Answer Thursday! (Part 2)

Questions in this segment about how many games USC wins, who wins the Pac-10 and Stanford’s ranking.

Q: uscmike said:
What are your predictions:

1. What is USC’s final record this year?
2. Who does USC lose to this season?
3. Who wins the Pac-10 this season?
4. Who wins the National Championship this season?

A: USC’s final record could be a lot of variations because the team’s played so inconsistently the first four games. I still think around 9-4. Oregon is the favorite but Stanford obviously looks like it could win the title too. I’ve got Alabama ranked No. 1 right now but I still think they will lose a game in SEC so maybe someone else like Boise State wins the title because of their easy schedule.

Q: shaneepoo said:
Why can’t Barkley throw a spiral on the longer range passes? It seems like his throws flutter a lot.

A: He always struggled with spirals and it’s an issue that has to do with footwork. I once asked Jeremy Bates (before I realized what an uninspired decision that was) why Barkley did not throw more spirals. And he said, “Peyton Manning doesn’t throw many spirals either.”
Of course, I was at USC a couple years ago when Manning showed up and worked out with some players and I can’t recall a single non-spiral pass. Thanks Bates.

Q: Trojan Conquest said:
I’m confused by your ranking of Stanford at number 9. I think they’re a top 5 team and might be in the BSC title game if they can get by Oregon on the road. Why not higher?

A: If they win at Autzen Stadium, they will be in my top 5 and it will take care of itself.

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  • Bobo

    The Boise State and TCU rankings drive me nuts. Boise barely beats a mediocre VTech team and beats the Beavs at home and is now the #3 team in the nation? TCU was losing in the 2nd half to SMU but won the game. Both of these teams would very likely have at least two conference losses in the Pac 10 or SEC. By the very fact that they have an admitted “easy” schedule from our esteemed AP voter SW, should be enough to keep these teams out of the top 10. But by ranking them #3 and #4 (SW’s most recent AP vote), and saying that Boise could ultimately play in the title game, is a complete joke. I was expecting Scott to lower his vote for both since they failed to cover last week….I love that logic.

  • I DIg Go Go Girls

    BSU, TCU and Utah could beat USC, but that ain’t saying much these days

  • LBprGuy

    Just laughed out loud at the Bates-Manning story – great post!

  • sureshot

    People who are driven nuts by Boise’s ranking drive me nuts. Boise plays the best (hardest) schedule they can. You don’t think they’d join the Big X or SEC if they were given a chance to? They do the best they can with much less money than all the BCS teams that complain about some “unfair” advantages. Does anyone remember a Nebraska team that got shellacked in the Big XII Championship game going to the NC and getting pummeled by Miami? Or how about Oklahoma getting pasted 35-7 by K-State and Darren Sproles and still going to the NC game (over SC) one game later?

    BCS teams need to face facts and come to grips with the possibility of Boise State playing in the NC game. If they run the table and all the other BCS schools lose a game, BSU will have earned it.

  • Bobo

    TCU and Boise St are teams that I admire and both have first rate coaches. I also agree that SC would have difficulty beating both teams if they played them this year. A fundamental problem is obviously the BCS system but I won’t go into that one.

    I disagree with sureshot when he says that if one of these teams runs the table that they would have earned it. One could argue that SC (or Iowa, Wisconsin, Arkansas, Florida fill in the blank) would likely run the table with either Boise St or TCU’s schedule and SC a championship worthy team? Right now it sure doesn’t appear so and the mechanism to flush out how good we are is the core PAC 10 schedule. The key difference is that while teams like SC, Bama, Florida etc play 8 or 9 difficult games while Boise and TCU play 1 to 3 games against good opponents. Stacking wins week after week against quality opponents is much more difficult than blowing out teams that aren’t very good and getting up for a couple of big games a year.

  • sureshot

    That sounds like an SEC retort. In fact, it sounds a lot like Urban Meyer circa 2006 complaining that Florida ran the SEC gauntlet and USC only had to face a couple of tough teams. Of course, he omitted the part about USC beating SEC Title Game foe 50-14 in Arkansas.