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August 24, 2009

Things I Don't Understand These Days

This offseason has been a confusing one for me.  People have been screaming at me to just get some things through my head, but I've not yet seen the logic behind some of their conjectures. So here's a little list of things that I don't understand and that keep bugging me.
  1. The Alabama Hype - Alabama's going to have a good defense.  Any Nick Saban coached team must be respected as defenders.  My trouble is on offense.  The Tide lost two of the best offensive lineman in the country off last year's team.  It's difficult to replace one of those guys, much less two.  And those losses are at the most critical line spots, left tackle and center.  Just look at the two games Smith didn't play in last year and what happened to Bama's production - Tulane, 172 yards of total offense, and Utah, 208 yards of total offense. Add to that a new quarterback, and I don't think the sum of those subtractions equals the number 5 team in the country.
  2.  "Sliders" or Mini-hamburgers - Why would I want three small things when I can get one big thing, roughly equivalent in size to the three small things, for a lower price? 
  3. The Credibility of Preseason Polls - This has been covered a thousand times by much better writers than me, but I'd just like to mention one game that beautifully illustrates my confusion.  An LSU friend of mine recently argued that all you need to judge the credibility of preseaon polls is to look at the LSU-Auburn game last year.  Both teams were in the top 10 in the country and ESPN Gameday was there.  LSU finished the regular season 7-5.  Auburn was an ugly 5-7 and didn't even get invited to the Bowl.  In retrospect, it was a highly-ranked average team against a highly-ranked bad team.  Why do we keep doing this?  To sell newspapers?  Who is buying newspapers?
  4. The New SEC Digital Network Deal - There's been a load of discussion on this in the blogosphere.  The Senator and David Hale had some rational and sound thoughts about the new video restrictions on highlights and replays of SEC games under the new online media rights deal, which have subsequently been revised.  My concern is if the delivery platform will be reliable.  The online deal is with XOS Technologies who, through JumpTV, has administered GXtra.  During my time as a GXtra subscriber, I'm not sure if I spent more time fuming over the technical difficulties or actually following the game.  Whatever the SEC online media center looks like, it better run better than GXtra or every SEC fan, not just the reporters on the beat, will be squawking loudly.
  5. What the Braves are Doing.  This is usually the time of the year when I figure out if I am going to keep following the Braves through the start of football season or cut them loose.  For a while I thought it was going to be easy, but the past couple of series have given me a little bit of hope for the wild card.  They've got the arms, but if the increased offense is relying on Adam LaRoche, I'm concerned.


Anonymous said... opportunity to post about the Braves. Well, Hudson is poised to return pretty soon, so there is that. I've got a funny feeling about this bunch.

You're right about 'Bama. They're not going to score many points this year and I think Va. Tech beats 'em.

PTC DAWG said...

Here's another confused fan about Bama...I would see top 10, maybe, but top 5? Give me a break. They may soon be working on a 3 game losing streak.

Shan said...

I don't understand all the pundit love for Julio Jones -- at the expense of AJ Green. Don't get me wrong, Jones is quite good, and was statistically similar to AJ last year. But many of the season previews have gone overboard praising Jones without hardly a mention of AJ. For example, check this SI photo gallery:

Perhaps it dovetails with your #1 item above. Sigh.

Mel Martinez said...

For the answer to #2, go directly to your nearest Krystal. Eat the BA Burger. It sucks.

THen get a sackful of 12 Krystals. Oh lordy!

This may not work for some of the newcomers to the slider/miniburger shenanigans, but for one of the orginals, it's the little ones all the way.

Dawg Stephen said...

Here's one i dont understand. Georgia returns ALL those players who were injured along with the ones who supposedly "limped" their way to a 10-3. And Georgia is a #11 while Alabama is the 5. I have Georgia at my #8.

Why isnt Penn State getting more love than the buckeyes?? anyway. play the games you will see

JasonC said...

RE: Bama
I think it's the defense + Julio. Also, I saw some guy post his prediction for McElroy's numbers. They were better than JPW's last year (with the better OL), so my question was, why didn't McElroy start last year?

Krystals are about 40-50 cents a piece, right? The burgers in the link are more than that, thus PWD's point.

Bill M. said...

well relyihg on laroche hopefully wont have to happen. i would hope that eventually chipper will start hitting better in the next couple weeks. that combined with huddy coming back could equal a lot of success.

Anonymous said...

Bama may be getting the votes, but most of the "hype" is going to Ole Miss and, to a lesser extent, LSU.

massey said...

RE: 1 'Bama...It's just like when Saban came to the school. The State's no 1 new name for baby boys was 'Saban'. The 'Bama Bandwagon' has never rolled as deep as it has now.

RE 2: I agree with you to an extent, I never understand America's obsession with trendy food items. Soem of these mini sliders are good, but still the sheer amount of these things at ever dinig establishment I go to is staggering. Similar to the obsession with 'Chipolte'...that stuff was/is everywhere too.

RE: 5 Braves are hurt. Mclouth, Prado...Gone for a while...but 'tis true Chipper and Escobar are in a slump. We still are finding ways to win, but those two need to get on the ball...pun intended. But are pitching (minus lowe) has been outstanding.


massey said...

And proofreading is not one of my stronger points...


Anonymous said...

"The State's no 1 new name for baby boys was 'Saban'." Right.

whataburger said...

Bama does return what could end up being the SEC's best D- even better than FLorida. And while they lose their OLine, they have a very good RB returning and of course the all-world sophomore Julio Jones.

But tell me this, what does Bama return that we do not?

...........still waiting...........

Anonymous said...

I've been saying the exact same thing about Bama all summer but no one seems to listen. This is a perfect example of why preseason rankings are completely pointless and out of date.

Mr. Bulldawg said...

LaRoche has been doing pretty well since coming back to ATL.

Ben in Georgia said...

Dawg Stephen,

I know it's just a slip, but I've got to call you on it anyways. We don't return "ALL the players who were injured plus those who 'limped' their way to 10-3". We are minus Stafford and Knowshon. Now, how much that really counts for? I tend to think not as much as most pundits believe, but I also tend to think more than most Georgia fans believe.

Also, Alabama returns a very good, proven RB. We don't. Our guys may have potential, but they're not proven just yet. However, 5 is way too high for the Hammers.

Dawg19 said...

Burger King tried something simliar to the sliders back in the mid-80's called Burger Bundles. It was a flop. I guess they are reviving it for another run.

The Braves will find a way to blow this. I am a diehard fan and, like the moth to the flame, come back to them every April hoping to rekindle the mid-90's magic. Even if they win the wild card somehow, they will get stomped in the opening playoff series by St. Louis or the LA.

As for preseason polls, they'll always be with us because fans need to something to chew on before the season starts.

DWH said...

Man I'm serious. Bama at #5 is the biggest joke I think I've ever seen in a preseason poll. And that's saying a lot.

Anonymous said...

#1-Its because its Bama. A lot of hype and not a lot of substance until last year.

#2- Actually I tink PWD is suggesting that the smaller burgers are more dollars for less bang. I know they are at BK and Ruby Tuesdays.

#3- Now for the biggie. I have been saying this for years and I wish someone would listen. IT DOES NOT MATTER WHAT YOU ARE RANKED WHEN YOU PLAYED, ONLY WHAT YOU END UP RANKED. Look at the Bama Clemson game last year. Preseason hype is huge, end of the year Clemson, not so much. Your Auburn, LSU game prime example. Our schedule that looked so tough at the beginning of the year, not so tough at the end.
#5- The Braves don't need Hudson as much as they do a good bat. The pitching is not the problem(although I wish Lowe could figure out his issues).They won these last two series with some guys out.Hopefully Prado and McClouth and Church get healthy soon.

X-Dawg said...

Braves fans = Charlie Brown. Braves team = Lucy holding a football for a kick......jmho

Hobnail_Boot said...


Preseason rankings are bunk because AU and LSU had subpar years? They were ranked that highly based upon track records of success. There's nothing wrong with that, and I'm sure the atmosphere for the Tiger Bowl was electric.. as it will be most years because both are historically strong programs.

I agree that preseason rankings are somewhat suspect, but you've got to come up w/ a better argument than that.

Mackie said...

...and what's the deal with Ovaltine?!? The cup is round, the can is round, why not call it Roundtine?!?

Anonymous said...

While i do agree with everything you said about Alabama, i would like to put forth the following point. Last year before the season everyone was saying it would be another year or two before Bama was great (presumably based off Saban's recruits needing time to arrive/mature). People were saying this knowing that they would lose Smith, JPW, etc. Now that it is a year later, what makes those predictions from a year ago go by the wayside?

Anonymous said...

Dearly misled brethren,

Quinton wrote this post, not PWD.

Hunker Down said...

#6. Women.

Anonymous said...

That's gold Mackie...Gold!

Anonymous said...

a few others:

why do you drive on a parkway and park on a driveway?

why do they call it a hot water heater when hot water doesn't need to be heated?

why do drive up ATM's have braille on them?

why is 'abbreviated' such a long word?

why does your feet smell and your nose runs?

Carlton said...

One More:
Why do they call them "apartments" when they're together?

skidawg1985 said...

The fellow who started the pre-season rankings admitted that the idea was just to sell papers.

I would add that it just revs up the excitement and discussion. It is college football's version of the old hot stove league in baseball.

Irwin R. Flecther said...

The problem is that all Bama fans younger than age 60 are front runners. They get one win over Georgia in the past 6 years and they crap all over themselves.

The Georgia community has a growing disdain for all things Bama. Probably has to do with the fact that they have 3 conference championships since the Bear left, with none since 1999. They have a 3:1 coach to conference championship ratio in that time period. (9 coaches:3 championships for you math wizards). They haven’t won a BCS bowl since 1992. (they are 1-5 in the BCS bowls since 1980)

Yet somehow, getting blown up in the Sugar Bowl and the SEC championship game to end the year gets you the cover of SI’s college football preview, 157 “Saban is a demi-god” articles, and more hype than Freddy Adu.

All praise to Bama and the ratings boost you give to the supreme being, ESPN.

(oh...go braves! Love to see Heyward get called up in September to see if he can swing it at the major league level)

Andy Rooney said...

Why do I get so much junk mail? Here's a credit card application from a company called "Visa".

Anonymous said...

The one thing I don't understand this offseason is hype the Dawgs have been getting.

I mean with insightful analysis by the ESPN crew talk about games and players I never would have considered to be trouble for Georgia. I am impressed with their level of football knowledge. Even Mark May let everyone know the toughest game is going be in some place called Jacksonville. Where is that?

Also, the media has just bashed everyone but Georgia these days. In fact I am getting a little embarrassed by all the attention. You would have thought that the QB and DL would be a question. However, it seems that everyone sees nothing but great things from these two parts of the team. Even Okie State and T-bone Pickens has downplayed their offensive prowess on the field and in the locker room because of the perceived awesomeness of Georgia. WOW!

I just don't understand. I would have thought FU would the preseason pick breaking all sorts of records for general magnanimous superlative achievement for being the studs they are but no one is talking about them. Tim Tebow has been put on a backburner. Is there something I missed?

I must be confused this offseason because I just don't understand... irony anyway.

Jeff said...


Mmmm, Double Cheese sprinkled with ketchup.

Chili Cheese Pups.

---- Safe ----

Ben said...

I don't understand why the final poll from last year isn't just used to start the next season...Does that not make sense?

skidawg1985 said...

Ben, not sure if you are being serious or not, but teams lose players (except somehow for UF) so the complexion changes a bit.

Anonymous said...

the reason for the poor play by the bama offensive line in those two games has to do with people playing out of position. in the utah game we had 2 lineman playing out of position and a freshman making his first start. at this point in the preseason we've had plenty of time for guys to practice and become familiar with their position. we also signed a few new lineman so the offensive line everyone saw in the sugar bowl isn't neccisarily what we'll be using this year. all the preseason polls and previews realize this. also we return 9 starters on defense, a proven running back in ingram, a healthy roy upchurch, one of the top running back recruits in the country last year in trent richardson, and julio jones. when you combine the offseason work with who all we're bringing back and who we're bringing in its easy to see why some many people are high on alabama in the preseason.

also irwim fletcher,
we've played three times in the last six years, so we're 1-2 against you but i guess since until 2002 georgia football didn't even deserve to be mentioned in the same sentence as alabama, thats why you only look at the past six years. so now i'm going to say something to you that people love to tell bama fans...stop living in the PAST!!! some georgia fan yelled at me in the student section last year after i got finshed singing rammer jammer and said,"you still lost to louisiana monroe." this was alomst as good as the guy who walks by me at halftime when it was 31-0 and says,"bama sucks" to which i politly replied scoreboard.

as for the disdain towards bama i can't help but think it has something to do with last year's game.


Anonymous said...

Change 6 years to 7 and you're 1-3. Just pointing that out for your enjoyment. You'd have to go all the way back to '95 to change that record.

27-25, 37-23, 26-23

Anonymous said...

Alabama just scored again and its 31-0.

Alabama plays physical and disciplined football.

Georgia does not.

Alabama believes in strong defense and special teams.

Georgia does not.

Alabama believes in scheduling for a national championship.

Georgia does not.

Therefore, Alabama is respected and is ranked high.

Georgia is not.

Irwin R. Flecther said...

Bama fans are turds and have no concept of reality.

Wake me up when you actually start winning championships instead of just 'scheduling' for them.

Did you win the SEC last year?

Did you win your bowl game last year?

I tell you what, if Bama can get through a season without either losing to a non-BCS team or having to vacate a win against a non-BCS team (which you would have to go back to the 'glory years' of 2005 to find the last time they did that), I'll give them a little respect. Until then, I'll let the d-bags at SI and ESPN continue to glorify a program that hasn't won anything this decade and a man who at last check hasn't won any game of championship significance since 2003. Seriously, the now fired Tommy T has won a championship more recently than Saban or Alabama.

Anonymous said...

oh how could i forget that georgia won the sec last year irwin? oh wait you didnt either, nor did you even win the east. in fact you didnt even win the east the year before you were preseason number 1 but by all means you deserved to play in the national champioship that year over lsu who actually won the sec. you have to go back to 2005 for the last time you won the sec, so it that was as long ago as you try and make it sound, why dont you wake me up when you start winning championships instead of just making up pathetic reasons of why when you finish second in the east you deserve a shot at the bcs title.


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