Friday, Fetch Friday, we're getting so fetch on Friday! South Florida just did their annual "we is so for fake as Big East contenders" dance. How annual? 2010 dropping opener to Syracuse. 2009 getting doubled up by Cincinnati in second game followed by a 41-14 mash out by Pitt. 2008 raned tenth losing to Pitt as double digit favorites. 2007 losing to Rutgers after beating West Virginia and getting up to second in the nation.
So I should have seen this coming before I picked them but oh Skip Holtz I thought you would be different. Perhaps it is just a Pitt problem, a team South Florida has not beaten since the 2007 regular season finally. They'll need to regroup with their bye week before taking on a UConn team that has no identity. My whining is over, I'm not mad USF and I'm not even disappointed, you are who you are. It was my fault for getting into bed with you.
On a more positive note we've got good friend of the program Russ Mitchell back on the Fetch Friday Bonus Podcast (Ooooh OoooOOOH!) to talk about the two biggest games of the weekend; Bama-Florida and Nebraska-Wisconsin. Over at College Football News Russ has got his take on the game where he thinks this is going to be a Bama Roll Tide Roll mash out affair not quite the tight slugfest I do. Special teams and defense should be crisp for both teams but how Florida and their edge based rushing attack get manhandled by Bama should be interesting to watch.
We go back and forth over the Tide and Gators game before getting to the "All Russell Wilson Everything" portion of the show where we talk about Wisconsin's machine and how Nebraska can stop them. Short answer? We don't really see that happening although if Jared Crick plays for the Huskers he'll give the "black skirts" as Russ calls them a mega-boost. If the player above isn't doing it for you just click here and get your Gators-Tide fix plus Huskers-Badgers and even a little Clemson discussion.
Now after this video on to the fetch, where stuff and things happen:
There is something that happened yesterday most folks likely don't care about but my friends and I had a lengthy debate over it so obviously we do. Here's the deal, UNC has renewed our series with East Carolina for the 2012 and 2013 season. I hate this.
Seriously, I hate it. I hate playing them. I don't like the game. I can't wait for Pirates and other people bring up the tired ass Boise State logic of "you're scared that's why you don't want to play them" so commonly used. Fact is this has nothing to do with fear or being worried about losing; it is about benefit versus zero benefit. When UNC signs up to play a home and home with ECU I don't really see any benefit for the UNC side of things. Game doesn't end up on national television, you're not taking a trip that can gain you any sort of exposure in areas that you don't currently recruit and you're losing a home game.
This doesn't even factor in the slanted emotional edge to the game or the fact that you're helping stuff money into the Pirates pockets. Throw those out. We'll just look at the fact UNC doesn't actually gain anything from playing this game. Until the legislature, as they have done in the past, makes you play it don't do it. I don't feel bad saying it either. It is a waste of a ball game for UNC, no matter how super awesome happy terrific it is for ECU or "the state" in general.
Speaking of UNC-ECU thank you television and East Carolina scheduling Gods for making me hate this game even more. This is a noon to 3:30 kickoff game. Two teams, neither of which is very good, from a few hours apart and they seriously have ZERO BUSINESS PLAYING AT 8PM UNLESS IT IS ON THE ESPN FAMILY FOR SOME ODD REASON. But, instead of a quaint little afternoon game where they can put it on local tv and the internet these guys decided to have a "Black Out" for the UNC game.
That means while actual good teams are playing like Clemson and Virginia Tech closing out, the Jedi and the Padawan in the Swamp and All Russell Wilson Everything in Madison the UNC-ECU game will be on too. So. Not. Cool. Do. Not. Want.
But don't worry people, given the fact that I'm taking this weekend off from chilling, I will be there for all the big game action. My UNC tweets will likely be few and far between, not because I don't love my Heels but because these other games are too good to miss live.
To wrap up with my own personal final thought on Bama and Florida, because while Huskers-Badgers is arguably a better game there is one thing about the SEC match-up.
How long can Florida go without getting much help from the wide receiver position?
Not just in this game because I don't expect Andre Debose or Deonte Thompson or Quinton Dunbar to step up this weekend. They can't really get open playing the slate the Gators have played up until now and with Bama's elite secondary I don't think this is the game where they turn it around. The Tide secondary is suffocating, actual good and established wideouts like Arkansas group couldn't get openings, to expect Florida's to best Bama's guys is just unfair.
But, and I guess ignoring next week's LSU game too because their secondary is elite, going forward when do some of these kids materialize? Not having a legitimate vertical threat is a killer, especially for a quarterback like Brantley who is pocket confined. Unlike Cam Newton, Tim Tebow and Denard Robinson who force safeties to keep their eyes in the backfield for the threat of run a pro styled or immobile passer is facing a more true-rules defense. The cheating up through QB run action or just general fear of the running game creates seams and holes that make it easier to target receivers in the passing game.
When those factors are absent it takes solid vertical threats to put the pressure on a defense and keep them honest. Guys who run good routes. Guys who can climb the ladder to get the football. Guys who can get open by finding holes in zones and settling down. Guys who can pull balls in with defenders on their backs. Hell, just guys who will catch the ball when they get a chance.
As the season progresses Florida has got to have these guys to be successful. That's part of the lifeblood of Weis' offense and while Chris Rainey is nice the fact is Weis just got done having Golden Tate and Michael Floyd, guys who would catch anything in their area. Gotta think if Brantley had someone he could rely on, if Florida had a receiver they could rely on, this offense would play a bit more vertical than just the side to side game.