Thoughts on Last Night's Game
I may do this every Friday, so if you're down with reading my wandering ruminations on a non-Ole Miss Rebel football game as a part of your morning e-routine, then I'm glad to do it. Last night, as most Thursday night games, was a largely poorly played game with occasional spurts of football brilliance that, once again as with most Thursday night games, is indicative of very little. I picked Auburn to win, but I wouldn't have been surprised had State won - an opinion I certainly held far before kickoff. ESPN's Thursday nights put bad juju on football teams making such games both exciting and excruciatingly frustrating to watch.
(FULL DISCLAIMER: I listened to most of the game, only really watching the first and fourth quarters. I was watching online and a spotty internet connection either froze the video or rendered it too fuzzy to watch most of the time.)
All of that considered, I thought Auburn played a good first half, while mixed up good drives with poor drives throughout the entirety of hte game. Chris Relf obviously can't throw worth a damn, so give Mullen credit for not actually asking him to do that very much until it was absolutely necessary (see: that final drive riddled with incompletions). I thought State's option calls were good, and only lacked good execution to be better. Auburn's stupid-ass wrap-around draw plays were, mostly, poorly timed and ineffective, while their option calls were pretty good aside from some execution issues here and there. Why they kept using them, though, is baffling considering how well they moved the ball outside of the hashes. And why they waited until the third quarter or so to actually use Michale Dyer is wild to me. I know that Auburn has a bevy of halfbacks to choose from, but Dyer is a damned monster when he's got the ball in his hands. Cam Newton looked the part of "gigantic ass option quarterback who can throw pretty well," aside from a few poor decisions.
Manny Diaz's Bulldog defense was "creative" and all, but it did leave some gaping holes for Newton to expose. Still, State played well defensively when the pressure was on so give that 13-year-old lookin' guy a little credit. If they could tackle Newton a little better - a tall order, pun intended - they would have had an easier time against the Tigers. Oh, and Parnell McPhee is the real deal, but y'all knew that already.
Oh, and I think it's fair to say that, had State won the Cam Newton recruiting sweepstakes, they'd have won that game. He would have made the throws the Relf couldn't have, and Auburn would have been stuck with the classic "somewhat capable, slow, white suburban kid" at quarterback seen at most Alabama institutions of higher football.
Your thoughts? Alright, link time.
Presley Makes Major League Debut with Pirates | OleMissSports.com
I'm lazily linking stuff from the corporate headquarters today. I'm getting my shit packed together for NOLA and then the Vandy weekend - yes, I'll be in the dirty for a little over a week - so I can't focus too much on Googlin' interesting news for you. Sorry. Anyway, Alex Presley got his first major league hit last night with the perennialy moribund Pittsburgh Pirates, this all comes after a pretty solid minor league career.
The left-handed hitter turned in an outstanding season in the minors before being called up by the Pirates, hitting .320 for the year with 12 home runs and 85 RBI. He also tallied 28 doubles, 13 triples and scored 86 runs as he split time with the Altoona Curve (AA) and the Indianapolis Indians (AAA).
Congratulations, Alex. Thanks for the 2006 SEC Tournament Championship.
Rebel Scouting Report : Tulane | OleMissSports.com
Juco will provide the Cup's slant on the game later today but, for now, check out the corporate headquarters'.
Rishaw Johnson Gone, Brandon Sanders Suspended | OleMissSports.com
Rishaw... Oh Rishaw... How you've been nothing but wasted potential since you got here. This guy has been in the doghouse for a solid three seasons now, with his ferocity and pysical gifts being the only things keeping him around. I guess something happened which was the straw that broke the camel's back and, before you ask, I do not know the specifics. I could find them out but, after something like three or four suspensions, it was about time for the guy to go. Best of luck to you in everything you do, Rishaw, and here's hoping that you grow out of whatever it is that causes you to irritate coaches so much.
And Brandon Sanders was a little used linebacker and special teams guy who isn't that good or physically ready for hte SEC. So, yeah, I'm not too beat up over that one.