Sunday, September 28, 2008

well that was awesome

Observations on the most embarrassing thing to happen to UVA football in the eight-plus years I've been a fan......

- Fuck.

- Two touchdowns in four games. 120th out of 120 in scoring offense. 118th out of 120 in rushing offense. 119th out of 120 in overall offense. (FIU must really suck.) This is the most pathetic display of pathetic patheticness I've ever seen in an offense. Mikey Groh must be relieved of duties, immediately. He has yet to lead the team to the top 100 in offense, and that won't change this season.

- Mikey must indeed go, but it won't make a lick of difference for this season. The offensive line is absolutely putrid. I'm tired of seeing yet another rushing attempt end up with Mikell Simpson extricating himself from the bottom of a big pile of defenders as four linemen stand around helplessly. Most of them need to be benched. At the very least the interior line must be. Time to see what Austin Pasztor, Mike Price, and Isaac Cain can do with a full-time gig - they can't possibly be worse than Shields, Stair, and Cabbell.

- Nice to see the Duke coaches bawling out Jabari Marshall for his dive into the end zone. Good for them, building a team not only with a more-than-competent head coach in Cutcliffe, but with some discipline as well. I rewound the tape about four or five times trying to hear what exactly came out of that one coach's mouth (it was Ron Middleton, the second-in-command) but all I could make out was "HAMINASEPTAWAHMAHOOMANAVA" which I guess is probably about ten different swear words all rolled into one.

- Duke fans: When you hold out your arms and wave your fingers at a guy inbounding the ball at Cameron, it is obnoxious, yet intimidating. It makes for a nice two-page Zoom Gallery picture inside the Mag. It is copied by schools around the country, and imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. When you do it at Wallace Wade, separated from the players by seventy yards of rubber track, officials, game staff, and grass field, in a half-empty stadium, you are not intimidating. You are tools.

- It's obvious who the best two players on defense are. It is no accident that the game went all to shit when Sintim and Dowling simultaneously went down with cramps.

- Calling for a quarterback change now would be the most counterproductive thing we could do, because:
1 - taking Verica out means no quarterback on the '09 roster will have any kind of extensive recent game experience at all. We can't throw Sewell back into the fire without any dependable backup, because a year away from football is enough time for the wax paper to go back over the eyes.
2 - Verica is the nominal 2010 starter, by which time hopefully things will be fixed somewhat, and we'll need a QB with experience.
3 - No sense in wasting Smalls' redshirt on this wasted season.
4 - Quarterback play is not the problem anyway.

- I have no idea why ESPNU would want to carry another UVA game this season, but they are. Great - we have already grabbed the title of Sorriest-Assed Team In All The ACC (SATIATA) with style and flourish, and now it is time to take a thorough beating at the hands of a hated rival. And technically it's on national TV. Things are gonna get really emo around here, really fast.

- Do you realize Duke is halfway to bowl eligibility? Would a Duke-Vanderbilt matchup be some kind of apocalyptic catastrophe?

- I have no doubt Mikey Groh needs to be demoted to third assistant to the tight ends coach, if not fired outright. I'm still on the fence about Al himself. On the one hand, the team is totally uninspired and directionless, which is 100% a reflection on the coach. On the other hand, you can't blame him for the absurd amount of attrition this team has seen, and I think we have a decent recruiting class coming in and worry about screwing that up, which coach-firings always do.

- Thank God I'm also a Michigan fan. Also thank God Wisconsin underestimated the Blue.

- Fuck.

Let's go to tape and look at Verica's stats/adjusted stats:

Actual stats: 19/42, 194 yards, 0 TD, 4 INT
Adjusted stats: 20/43, 200 yards, 0 TD, 5 INT

How do we get here from there?

5th throw: Koch had to stretch high, but should have caught the ball. Add a completion and 13 yards.

8th throw: Pass interference call that doesn't show on the stat sheet. Covington was interfered with. Probably doesn't matter, as it was a low-percentage throw, overthrown a bit, and probably wouldn't have been caught. Add one incompletion - I don't think the PI prevented a catch.

12th throw: That's many picks as Verica threw, he should have had one more, but Green broke up the catch nicely.

22nd throw: Torchia dropped it, though he was crushed at the same time the ball got there. Not Verica's fault, the throw was on target. Add a completion and one measly yard.

38th throw: Burd made a nice leaping grab on a way-high throw. Take away a completion and 8 yards.

Blogpoll ballot:

2Penn State 6
3Texas 4
4Oklahoma 5
5LSU 1
6South Florida 4
7Missouri 2
8Brigham Young 9
9Virginia Tech 2
10Utah 2
11Connecticut 15
12Ohio State 2
13Auburn 8
14Georgia 10
15Oklahoma State 4
16Texas Tech--
17Vanderbilt 7
18Southern Cal 15
19Oregon 7
20Florida 18
21Ball State 5
22Boise State--
23Michigan State 3
24Kansas 11
25North Carolina 1

Dropped Out: Clemson (#15), Nebraska (#18), Wisconsin (#20), East Carolina (#23), Wake Forest (#25).

- I wouldn't have dinged UGA so hard for just losing. Alabama laid the beat-stick. In Athens. With the special black uniforms. (Has any uniform gotten more obnoxious coverage than when Georgia wears black? It makes the front page of both ESPN and Yahoo. What's so special about this?)

- Northwestern is close at 5-0, but their wins just are not quite impressive enough. 16-8 over Ohio. 24-20 over Duke. Not really awe-inspiring. But if they beat MSU next week, it'll be their ticket to rankingdom.

- Wisconsin gets the boot for not having a whole lot of impressive wins, and for losing to a team that Notre Dame beat. Notre Dame also failed to make the cut, as it came down to them and UNC. Kansas, off a bye week and without a ton of impressivity on their resume, was in danger of missing out as well, but they squeak in.

- Just missed, in no particular order: Notre Dame, Northwestern, Nebraska, Tulsa, TCU, Wisconsin.

- I was one of two to put Alabama at the top of last week's ballot. I suspect I won't be so unique this time around.

Kindly do tell me how jacked up the ballot is.

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