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Dr. Sloop's ANNUAL PRE-SEASON PICKS

Discussion in 'Buckeye Football' started by Sloopy45, Aug 30, 2004.

  1. Sloopy45

    Sloopy45 Pimp Minister Sinister

    BIG TEN HEAVIES:

    Ohio State Buckeyes: 10-1 (7-1 in Big Ten). This team could easily run the table with an unusually light schedule for Ohio State. However, I can't pick them to do so until a legitimate ground game shows its face. You can't win the National Championship at Ohio State without running the ball. Having scUM at the 'Shoe this year helps a lot, as well.

    Reason for 10-1: The Buckeyes should be favored to win each and every game they play in this year. However, the aforementioned running game (or lack thereof) is a big question.

    Player to Watch: Insert Freshman RB here. Either Pittman or Haw (or both) will have to step up and become dynamic, work-horse type backs if this team is going anywhere in '04.

    dUMb: 9-2 (6-2 in Big Ten). Lloyd Carr has shown a tendency to lose a game that he shouldn't each and every year (with the exception of '97). I can't see that trend ending considering he's got an inexperienced QB and RB starting (and this situation is VERY unusual at scUM).

    Reason for 9-2: An upset here, and an ass pounding at the 'Shoe there. All the others are wins.

    Player to Watch: Steve Breaston So. WR. Is electric in the return game. Is one of many interesting young players that dUMb has on its roster. If you can watch them without tossing your cookies, that is.

    CONTENDERS:

    USC: 12-0 (8-0 in Pac-10). Anything less than an undefeated season would be a dissapointment for Pete Carroll's crew. They backed into a National Championship last year, so now go run the table and earn it. They have weaknesses (as shown in Game 1 againt Va Tech) at WR and on Defense, but they have a great QB, an unbelievably deep and talented backfield, big-time talent all across the field, a great Special Teams, and there's no other big-time contenders in the Pac-10, or Bear Traps on the schedule. Everything should be in place.

    Reason for 12-0: I can't pick out a loss on their schedule, can you?? Cal is at home, and .... nothing. @ BYU? @ Stanford? ASU? Washington? @ WSU? Notre Dame? @ UCLA?? Where is the loss?

    Player to Watch: I'm going the unconventional route and saying Jeff Byers. I want to see if the hype matches the player and just how dominating this kid is.

    Oklahoma Sooners: 9-2 (6-2 in Big XII). The Sooners have three big questions to answer from '03: 1.) Is Jason White legit? (Sure didn't look like it in the last 2 games), 2.) Can they consistently run the ball? (They've got to scrap the FSU-style feature scat back), and 3.) Can the D-Line go 13 games without taking some critical games off?

    Reason for 9-2: The Sooners should be a lock to go 5-0, but it gets schetchy from there: @ K-State (Stoops has a habit of following a bad loss to an opponent with another bad loss to an opponent, and this one's in Manhattan), @ Oklahoma State (Stoops has a bad past here but Rashaun Woods is gone), and @ Texas A&M. I can't pick Stoops to run the table in that stretch, and I see 2 losses somewhere. A&M could be a darkhorse to beat them: Franchione's in his second year at A&M, Stoops has major ghosts at College Station, and Reggie McNeal has beaten the Sooners before. Plus, the Aggies will be looking for major revenge after the "Lupica Bowl" 77-0 drubbing in Norman last year (they even did a feature piece on that game in a recent S.I.).

    Player to Watch: Adrian Peterson, Fr. RB. OU has got to get production from a big, fast RB who can carry the load and establish the ground game. Peterson's got to be it. Kejuan Jones is too small (5-9, 191) and Jason White's weaknesses in the passing game have been exposed. They have to show a legit ground game to have any shot at the OB this year. If Peterson can pull off a Clarett-type Freshman campaign, the Sooners will go back to the BCS Title game. Bank on it.

    Georgia Bulldogs: 10-1 (7-1 in SEC). Georgia has a lot to prove this year. The OL was inexperienced and unproductive last year, and might not be all that better this year. They've got the SEC Title game to bail them out of any early season loss, and should be considered a legit threat to go to the Orange Bowl. They can even sneak in with an SEC East loss in the Title game.

    Reason for 10-1: The bottom line is this: Georgia cannot win at the Cocktail Party, and until proven otherwise, this is a loss. Talk about John Cooper's ghosts vs. scUM, talk about Mack Brown's ghosts vs. Bob Stoops, and they're nothing compared to Florida's dominance over the 'Dawgs in the last decade, plus. They've even made Ron Zook look good in this game, and these were Florida's down years! Georgia must win this game to propel themselves to the next level.

    SLEEPERS:

    Kansas State Wildcats: 11-1 (8-1 in Big XII): Considering the fact that Coach Snyder won't let little things like, oh, academics or alleged rape cases keep his star players off the field, we know that K-State will have all the pieces in place for a National Title run.

    Reason for 11-1: The schedule & Darren Sproles. They're a little light in talent compared to the heavyweights, but they hardly play a warm body. I should make this an honorary section in my pre-season picks, because its always a good laugh: K-State's OOC Schedule: Western Kentucky, Fresno State, & Louisiana-Lft. They got Oklahoma at home, Missouri on the road, and nothing more than that. I'm picking them to win those games, and I can't buy all these Missou picks just yet (just because they have Brad Smith doesn't mean they're a good team, they were 8-3 last year and are still behind the Big XII heavies in terms of talent). Plus, K-State took a huge step forward last year with its win against Oklahoma. Don't kid yourselves about that. Sproles will control the ground game on KSU's way to the Big XII Title. They will get upset by someone (I can't see them in the OB), just don't know who.

    Player to Watch: Darren Sproles. Sure, he didn't do squat against the Bucks D last year, but not many RBs ever do. His numbers are staggering: 1,986 yards and 16 TDs in '03, and should get better. He should be the pre-season Heisman Front Runner.

    NOT QUITE THERE YET:

    Miami Hurricanes: 10-1 (7-1 in ACC). Miami has a lot of talent, and some great exciting young players in Ryan Moore, Tyrone Moss, Baraka Atkins, and established stars like Eric Winston and Antrel Rolle. But, you don't run the table with Brock Berlin at QB. Sorry. He will blow a game for Miami at some point.

    Reason for 10-1: They will beat FSU at home, and they will run a horrible schedule (by Miami's standards), except for one game (and you heard it here first): @ Virginia, November 13th. Odd Couple fans will remember that date as being the day that Felix Ungar was asked to remove himself from his place of residence, but that's besides the point.

    Players to Watch: Baraka Atkins So. DE. This kid is an animal. He gets to the QB, then gets to his family. Definately worth the price of admission. Honorable mention: Ryan Moore, So. WR: has as much athletic ability as any WR in the Nation.

    LSU Tigers: 10-2 (7-2 in SEC). LSU could come back to the pack a little bit in '04. They have talent all over, but there are big time questions at the QB position with unproven JaMarcus Russell and Marcus Randall replacing Matt Mauck.

    Reason for 10-2: Not to sound like Phil Steele, but if some of you remember this same thread on BN last year, I picked LSU to go to the Sugar Bowl, mostly because their schedule was favorable. This year's is not. From Sep. 18th to October 9th (in the span of 4 weeks & 4 games), the Tigers play @ Auburn, @ Georgia, and @ Florida. Its very likely that the Tigers go 1-2 in those games with a new QB (just getting his feet wet) and are out of the National Title race early. See my SEC Title game pick below.

    Player to Watch: Justin Vincent, So. TB. The kid can fly, is explosive, and was a key contributor to LSU down the stretch. Look for a big year out of him, and possibly a darkhorse for the Heisman.

    Florida Gators: 10-2 (8-1 in SEC). The Gators are loaded on both sides of the ball, and have a somewhat favorable schedule. The Leak-Fason (or Wynn)-Caldwell QB-RB-WR could be the best young trio of its kind in the Nation. But, Zook and the coaching staff haven't proven squat and haven't proven that they can win the big game. Plus, the pressure's on because the Ol' Ball Coach is looming.

    Reason for 10-2: I'm picking the Gators to run the table until FSU. I think they're a young talented team with a lot of potential, but the Zook and inexperience factor keep them back this year.

    Player to Watch: DeShaun Wynn, So. TB. Is behind Ciatrick Fason on the depth chart, but will most likely split the carries with the Junior. Has loads of potential, and besides, its great to see an Ohio kid light up the "speed" state.

    PRETENDERS:

    Florida State Seminoles: 9-2 (6-2 in ACC): I see them losing a game after Miami, and I can't, just can't pick them against the Canes. This is becoming a very one-side match-up, and the "Wide Right" Curse is reaching Curse of the Bambino proportions. Remember, the FSU punter had as much to do with blowing the '02 Classic as much as Beitia's missed FG with time running out did - none of the kickers can get in done is So. Florida.

    Reason for 9-2: They should be favored against every opponent besides Miami, but Rix will blow one that they shouldn't lose. Bank on it. He's looked like a right handed Steve Bellisari to me since his Freshman Year, and hasn't improved.

    Texas Longhorns: 10-2 (7-2 in Big XII): You heard it here first: UT will lose to Oklahoma, but win the Big XII South.

    Reason for 10-2: The schedule is just too easy. Even Mack Brown can't screw this one up. Throw in the sure-fire loss to Oklahoma, and what else do you have? A bunch of N Texas, Rice, Baylor, Okie State, and A&M at home, and a little @ TT, @ Colorado, @ Arkansas, and @ Kansas. The only semi-tough home game is Missouri. There's nothing that resembles a loss on that schedule.

    Tennessee Vols: 9-2 (6-2 in SEC). Tennessee could be a sleeper in the SEC, and possibly get a good shot at the Orange Bowl. Not so much for the overwhelming talent (its weaker compared to other years), but look at the schedule: they only have 2 losable games (Florida, @ Georgia).

    Reason for 9-2: Because you can't spell Citrus without U.T. If the Vols beat Florida, they can easily back their way into the OB if the SEC East loses the SEC Title Game (see: Nebraska, '01). But, I'm picking Florida to win and have a bounce back year. Besides that, who else is UT going to lose to? Kentucky? "Arch-rival" Vandy? A fallen from graces 'Bama? Notre Dame (see: 'Bama description)? Ain't happenin'. The schedule is easy, and **** they could back their way into the OB. Don't laugh, Di - its very possible.

    QUICK HITS:

    West Virginia: Please. A horrible conference and an easy schedule do not a legit Title contender make. They can make a BCS Bowl and will get bounced. Hard.

    Notre Dame: Willingham got too much press for the resurgance in '02, and too much blame for the flop in '03. The Subway alum would be foolish to not give him a fighting shot with his own kids.

    Virginia: Will be a Pre-Season Top 10 team in '05. Good talent, but has a tough stretch run with road games @ FSU and @ rival Va Tech towards the end of the season. Also plays a home game in Miami that could decide the fate of the ACC and maybe the Orange Bowl.

    Cal: The Fighting Tedfords will surprise some people again. Watch out for them in the Pac-10.

    CONFERENCE PICKS:

    Big Ten: Who else? The Ohio State motherfuckin' University Buckeyes, beyotch!

    SEC Title Game: Florida vs. LSU. LSU avenges an earlier season loss and hands the Gators its 2nd loss in a row to end the season. fireronzook.com gets more hits than any web site in the world the next day, and 500 of them come from Steve Spurrier's laptop.

    Big XII Title Game: Texas vs. 1 Loss K-State. KSU wins a tight game against the worst big game coach in the country, and heads to its 2nd BCS Bowl ever.

    ACC: Miami Hurricanes.

    Pac-10: USC

    FED-EX ORANGE BOWL: USC vs. one of the one loss teams I have above (OSU, Miami, Georgia, or K-State).
     
  2. MililaniBuckeye

    MililaniBuckeye The satanic soulless freight train that is Ohio St Staff Member Tech Admin

    Yo, yo, yo...troof, boooyyyeeeeee.
     
  3. KillerNut

    KillerNut Banned

    I disagree with a lot of what you say there but I am glad the talk is almost over and the games are almost here!
     
  4. MegaWoody

    MegaWoody Newbie

    Word, Sloopy Dawg...
     
  5. Sloopy45

    Sloopy45 Pimp Minister Sinister

    KillerNut: "I disagree with a lot of what you say there but I am glad the talk is almost over and the games are almost here!"

    Where do you disagree with me, Killer?

    MegaWoody: "Word, Sloopy Dawg..."

    I'm "Hooked On Ebonics," Mega-Wood. Word to ya Mutha.
     
  6. AKAK

    AKAK If you hear the siren its already too late Staff Member

    The only thing I disagree with is that each of those reviews on their own is pretty good... but as a whole... those teams will lose more games than that... Just too many teams with only 1 or 2 losses...
     
  7. Sloopy45

    Sloopy45 Pimp Minister Sinister

    AKAK: "The only thing I disagree with is that each of those reviews on their own is pretty good... but as a whole... those teams will lose more games than that... Just too many teams with only 1 or 2 losses..."

    Agreed. But this year is odd: pretty vanilla schedules, and no huge OOC match-ups between heavies. The season will play out like you said, but for argument's sake in the pre-season, I can't look at a Miami-Clemson match-up and call that a loss for the Canes.

    Even with the USC pick, I don't think they'll run the table, but I had to pick somebody. Call it undefeated by default.
     
  8. LightningRod

    LightningRod Senior

    I want to see how well Breaston has recovered from the hairline fracture in his foot. I am assuming the pin has been removed and he is good to go.
     
  9. AKAK

    AKAK If you hear the siren its already too late Staff Member

    I see exactly what you are saying... but somewhere along the road those types of upsets are going to happen... the trick is to know which ones...

    If I had to pick... a couple...take Florida for example.. I look at their schedule and I just see more than one loss in the conference.. dunno which ones.. but I think there is more than one there. I feel pretty much the same about K-State... (I'm actually torn with K-State... They might go 'and 1' or they could get taken to teh shed in a bunch of games... Anyway... Like I said, I can't argue with one particular analysis... I just know there are more losses for that group.
     
  10. KillerNut

    KillerNut Banned

    I think as long as Ross stays healthy, he will be dominant. I am talking MoC/Eddie George type of dominance. IF he stays healthy.

    The most overrated team this season in the Big Ten. Llyod and the boys should be looking up directions to San Antonio, not talking National Championship.

    scUM will lose 3 maybe even 4 games this season to teams like Notre Dame, Iowa, Minnesota, Purdue, Michgan State, Northwestern, and of course Ohio State. I can't tell you which games but I know they will lose a lot more of them than people think. What they have is a good offensive line and a good WR core. There defense is very suspect as it has been for the last several years. I really think the three losses are going to come to Ohio State, Minnesota, and Notre Dame, but I also think they will give at least one of the other teams every chance to beat them this year.

    Big Ten
    1) Ohio State
    1a)Minnesota
    2) Iowa
    3) Wisconisn
    4) Michigan
    5) Purdue
    6) Northwestern
    7) Illinois
    8) Penn State
    9) Mich State
    10) Indiana

    Nope! Not to say that the media has not hyped them as the team to beat but I really think we are looking at a two loss team. Cal or WSU will get them and then ND? Oregon St? Washington? BYU? AZ St.? One of these games that they should be a big favorite in will get them.

    Georgia is not even the best team in the SEC East. They will be behind Florida, and Tennesee, One of these teams will beat them, South Carolina will beat them, and LSU should win the SEC. Along the way they drill GA in Athens. Georgia to Tampa.

    K-State will lose @ aTm, Oklahoma, @ Mizzou, and will be in San Antonio with scUM


    Nope. FSU will win that one, in fact I have a feeling it may be a flat out beating. I comend you on seeing the VA upset, but you missed NC State which will win because they have a big brusing TB which seems to always hurt Miami, and they will not take the challenge seriously.

    I kind of agree with you but it will Be Tennesee vs. LSU with LSU winning

    Mizzou (10-1) vs. Oklahoma (who will have two losses). Mizzou finally makes it. Look at the schedule and look at the talent. @Texas is the only real chance for a loss on the road (and don't try to talk to me about Nebraska) Every other game that may be a challenge is home.

    Sorry to say this but it will be Co-Champions Florida State and Virginia both with one loss Florida State will beat Virginia and Florida State will lose @ NC State. NC State I know I mention as beating both Florida schools but VaTech, Mayland, and Clemson should beat them so should Ohio State.

    Well I know it will not be USC. My thoughts right now are:

    Florida State vs. LSU/Ohio State/Missouri/ as much as I hate to say it West Virginia
     
  11. BuckeyeNation27

    BuckeyeNation27 Goal Goal USA! Staff Member

    dammit killer nut....i was looking forward to this season.....thanks for ruining it and telling me whos gonna win every game. :biggrin:

    seriously tho....thats some major analysis.
     
  12. Sloopy45

    Sloopy45 Pimp Minister Sinister

    Killer: "I think as long as Ross stays healthy, he will be dominant. I am talking MoC/Eddie George type of dominance. IF he stays healthy."

    Here's where we disagree big time. First, Lydell won't stay healthy. He gets hurt because he's not big enough to take a pounding. Second, he's not at the talent level of MoC or Eddie Heisman. He's dominated Indiana in his career, and not done anything else to tell me that he's more than that.

    Not to talk bad about a college kid, but he's just not a star back at the college level. He's shown me nothing to prove otherwise.

    "scUM will lose 3 maybe even 4 games this season to teams like Notre Dame, Iowa, Minnesota, Purdue, Michgan State, Northwestern, and of course Ohio State."

    I can't see that. scUM (with the aforementioned questions) is still way more talented than any of those teams you mentioned. Northwestern?? They have no prayer of beating dUMb. Come on. These last two picks were made with Scarlet & Gray glasses on.

    "There defense is very suspect as it has been for the last several years."

    I don't see that at all. Gabe Watson & LaMarr Woodley are stars in the making on the DL, Pat Massey can get it done, Pierre Woods is an All-Big Ten caliber LB, the LB corps is experienced, and the defensive backfield includes Marlin Jackson & Ernest Shazor. LeSeuer was the guy that OSU burned in "The Game" last year, and he's long gone. scUM has playmakers all over the field on D.

    "Georgia is not even the best team in the SEC East. They will be behind Florida, and Tennesee, One of these teams will beat them, South Carolina will beat them, and LSU should win the SEC."

    I picked Florida to finish ahead of Ga. in the SEC East, and I picked LSU to win the SEC. Some of the others: South Carolina?? You can't pick them over the Bulldogs at this point. And Tennessee doesn't have the talent level of Georgia, and they always lose to them! Plus, they play in Athens this year!

    "Nope. FSU will win that one, in fact I have a feeling it may be a flat out beating. I comend you on seeing the VA upset, but you missed NC State which will win because they have a big brusing TB which seems to always hurt Miami, and they will not take the challenge seriously."

    FSU "flat-out" beating Miami?? They might win, but it won't be a blow-out. This game is in the Orange Bowl, remember? Not to mention that Miami has flat out dominated, snake-bit, and have completely taken the FSU kicker (mentally) out of the game the last few years. I'll keep you in mind on Monday after this game plays out. And, you could be right about NC State. We'll see.

    "Florida State vs. LSU/Ohio State/Missouri/ as much as I hate to say it West Virginia"

    I disagree. I think you're overlooking the problems LSU and FSU will have at QB for this upcoming season. They're huge holes. Plus, Missouri and WVA just flat-out don't have the talent to make the Orange Bowl. It doesn't matter what their schedule is like, someone will beat 'em at some point. You've got to mix talent, luck, and schedule to run the table, and the Tigers and 'Eers don't have the players.
     
  13. KillerNut

    KillerNut Banned

    6'0" 225 isn't big enough to take the pounding? HaaWHAT! He is plenty big enough. What I question and have always questioned is his heart, but it is now or never, and a big paycheck in the NFL is the prize. I have a feeling that the Grinch he will find he has a heart and it will grow times 3.

    Well scum should have lost to Minnesota last year, and IMHO Minnesota is better this year than last year, scUM on the other hand I think took a step backwards loosing some of the players they lost. Purdue gets them at home, after getting embarassed last year, later in the year, when that defense should be much better. Michigan State is a rivalry game, so although the talent may not be there, I will not give scUM that one. Notre Dame plays scUM at home with a 2nd year QB. I will not guarantee a win on this until I see them play, but at this point I do see it as a possibility. Northwestern would be a big upset, but they always seem to pull one off. Iowa has beaten them two years in a row, with less talent, and they get them at home again this year. Ohio State I hear might be okay too. All of this spells A-L-A-M-O even when you take off the scarlet and gray glasses.

    Last season they gave up:
    Oregon= 31pts
    Iowa= 30 pts
    Minnesota= 35 pts
    Michigan state 20 pts
    Ohio State 21 pts (and we know what kind of offensive juggernaut(sp) we had)

    You can talk about individual talents all you want, in my book that equals suspect.

    When can I then because it is the second game of the season. It is in Columbia. It is a rivalry game. That stadium can be and probably will be brutal. Georgia no longer has a running game to keep the pressure off of Greene. South Carolina does have a running game. South Carolina is returning 9 offensive starters and 8 defensive. They have, IMHO, one of the best coaches in the country in Lou Holtz. I think this could be a better team than I am predicting, but they will get that win, or give them one hell of a game.

    Finally in Florida State which the last two coments deal with there is nothing wrong with their QB Chris Rix, is Herbie's pick for the Heisman, and I don't think that is much of a strech. He has all of the tools all of the weapons, and great coach. This is going to be his year, and he will start off by getting the attention of everyone by winning the game in the Orange bowl. Florida State is going to be there in the end, I just don't really know who they are going to play.

    LSU doesn't need a QB to play great just don't blow it. They have a running game and a rediculous defense. They will be in the hunt I just don't know with the schedule that you pointed out what will happen.
     

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