Friday, November 19, 2010

Four Names You Should Know in College Football - (Jeff Bailey)

I try to come up with a list every year of the top players in the country that are not household names but should be.  Even though we are 11 weeks into the season, the four players listed below are still not known by a very large majority of college football fans.  I am not saying these guys will make great NFL players, but they are all great college players.  All stats listed below are through week 11 of the 2010 season.

4. Justin Blackmon, Soph, Oklahoma St, WR
This one is probably the most known of the four players on the list, but a lot of people still don’t know the name.  Blackmon is only a sophomore but leads the country in receiving yards (currently 1430 yards) by almost 200 yards.  If that isn’t impressive enough, he missed one game earlier in the season for a DUI arrest.  Not only is he leading the nation in receiving yards, but he is also #1 in the country in receiving TDs with 16.  Along with the stats, he is a long shot in the Heisman race and is #5 in ESPN’s Heisman Watch list.  Blackmon was also named a finalist for the Maxwell Award, which goes to the nation’s best player as seen by coaches, sportswriters and sportscasters.  I also expect Blackmon to be named a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award which goes to the top WR in the country.  I personally believe Justin Blackmon is the best WR in college football.  Since he is only a sophomore he will be back next year, so be on the lookout for him.

3. Ryan Kerrigan, Sr, Purdue, DE
Kerrigan is the first of two DE’s on my list.  Defensive players never get the recognition that offense players get in football but they are still amazing play makers.  Kerrigan is currently #2 in the country in sacks with 11.5.  This is not foreign territory for Kerrigan because he was tied for #4 in the country with 12 sacks last year, and led the Big Ten.  Ryan might be considered a sack machine college, but a major stat that has been totally overlooked for him is forced fumbles.  This past week, Kerrigan recorded his 13th and 14th career forced fumbled which put him in the top spot for that statistic in Big Ten football history.  To go along with his stats, he is a finalist for the Lombardi Award which goes to the county’s best lineman or linebacker.  He is also projected as a top 10 pick in next year’s NFL Draft.

2. Da'quan Bowers, Jr, Clemson, DE
Bowers is the 2nd DE on my list.  It amazes me that he is not a household name yet.  I believe Bowers is the best DE, and maybe the best defensive player in college football right now.  From the beginning people should have known his name.  When Bowers was coming out of high school he was ranked by multiple sources as the #1 high school football prospect in the country.  He as more then lived up to the hype.  Bowers currently leads the nation in sacks with 13.5.  Even though he is only a junior he is considered by many to be a top 5 pick in the upcoming 2011 NFL draft.  Bowers also joins Kerrigan as a finalist for the Lombardi Award and is also a finalist for the Bednarik Award which goes to the best defensive player in the nation.  I expect Bowers to go pro after this season, but if he doesn’t watch out for him next season.

1. Colin Kaepernick, Sr, Nevada, QB
Drum roll please….the #1 player on my list that should be a household name is Colin Kaepernick from Nevada.  This guy has been on my list the past 3 years, yet people still do not know who he is.  In my book Colin will go down as one of the best college football players ever.  Sure he plays for Nevada in the WAC, but what he has done on the field is insane.  Over his four year career he is averaging (using his 2010 stats from week 11) 2300 yards passing, 20 passing TDs, 965 yards rushing, and 14 rushing TDs per season.  That is an average of over 3200 total yards of offense and 34 TDs per season.  These numbers are guaranteed to go up since he still has 3 games, plus a bowl game to play this season.  The past three seasons, including 2010, he has gone for over 2000 yards passing and over 1100 yards rushing.  These numbers are very impressive, but let’s look at where he is on the all time NCAA lists for some stats.  With 3 games plus a bowl game left this season his stats will definitely go up, but the current numbers are through week 11 of the 2010 season.
Kaepernick has just over 13,000 total yards of offense in his career.  The record is 16,910, so it will be a stretch for him to break the record.  He currently has 132 total TDs in his career.  The record is 152, so it will be another stretch to break that, but he should lock up the #2 position.  #2 is currently held by Tim Tebow with 140 TDs.  He is only 8 TDs behind Tebow so it shouldn’t take him too long to break.  Kaepernick is averaging 3.2 TDs per game and with 4 games left, so he should easily become #2 all time.  Lastly, he has 54 rushing TDs in his career.  The record for most rushing TDs by a QB is 59 set by Eric Crouch.  This record should be his by the end of the season if he keeps up with his current pace.  On top of all the insane stats, Kaepernick was put on the watch list for 6 awards going into the season.

And there you have it; the top 4 players you should know in college football for 2010.  Now you can bust out new names when talking college football with your friends and family.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

WEC and UFC picks

By: Lotis Butchko

For the past two years, I have been handicapping UFC fights picking an outstanding
98.2% on the cards and 95% on parlays.

So right here on Man Cave Blueprint we are picking your fights for the next two weeks
including: WEC and UFC.

WEC 52 Faber vs Mizugaki

*Urijah Faber (No. 4 FW) vs. Takeya Mizugaki (No. 6 BW)
Faber wins easily. Faber is active and has great wrestling. This doesn’t make it to the
third round.

*Joseph Benavidez (No. 3 BW) vs. Wagnney Fabiano (No. 10 BW)
Benavidez is coming off a title loss. No hangover here. He wins in a decision.

Chad Mendes vs. Javier Vazquez
I like both fighters here. But give me Javier. Javier has only lost two fights in the WEC
both by split decision.

Damacio Page (No. 7 BW) vs. Demetrious Johnson
Johnson is an up and comer. But I am not sold on him. He has really beat up on lower
caliber guys. Give me Page in this fight.

Zachary Micklewright vs. Dustin Poirier
Micklewright is a devastating striker, and Poirier has a great ground game. This has an
interesting tone to it. In betting I would stay away from this fight, but if you want to take
Poirier, if he can get it to the ground he is solid.

*Anthony Njokuani vs. Edward Faaloloto
I started watching Njokuani about four years ago in the Dallas circuit. He is a solid
striker – one of the best Muay Thai guys I have seen – So I like him here. Take him for a
Knockout of the night.

Yves Jabouin vs. Brandon Visher
Both fighters are finishers. So you can bet this won’t go three. I like Visher here. Not
only can he strike but Visher has a great ground game.

Michael McDonald vs. Clint Godfrey
I hate picking new fighters. I have seen Clint before, but only for one fight. If I have to
pick a fighter here I will take Godfrey. But this is one of the lower fights where I would
stay away from.

*Cub Swanson vs. Mackens Semerzier
Take Cub, plain and simple. This is a feeder fight.

L.C. Davis vs. Raphael Assuncao
Not an easy fight. But for fun take Assuncao. He has a pretty good game.

UFC 122 Germany

Two nights later UFC kicks off their Germany show. This show should probably be free
on television. But every time you think it’s a bad show for the UFC the fighters come out
and deliver.

Nate Marquardt (No. 4 MW) vs. Yushin Okami (No. 8 MW)
Marquardt was doing great till he ran into Sonnen. Now he is out to prove he can still
beat silva. He beats Okami in two.

Alessio Sakara vs. Jorge Rivera
I like Sakara here. He is solid.

Krzysztof Soszynski vs. Goran Reljic
Soszynski with a Kimura. The guy can swing and submit.

(Amir Sadollah vs. Peter Sobotta
Amir takes this one.

Dennis Siver vs. Andre Winner
I like Andre in this fight. Andre is a good fighter and he is hungry.

Vladimir Matyushenko vs. Alexandre Ferreira
First off I was shocked that Matyushenko was in the UFC. He is getting old. But I like his
experience against Ferreira.

Rob Kimmons vs. Kyle Noke
Honestly I don’t know much about either guy. But I will take Noke on the soul fact that
he went the distance with Hector Lombard who is just freaking scary.

Karlos Vemola vs. Seth Petruzelli
Take Kimbo Killer Seth in this fight.

Duane Ludwig vs. Nick Osipczak
Nick O, he was set to win this right.

Kris McCray vs. Carlos Eduardo Rocha
And of course I have to take McCray here.

Pascal Krauss vs. Mark Scanlon
Paul Krauss… I like his name.

* indicates sure fire bets that I would make in a heartbeat. The other fights are just ones
that I think. If you want to make some money pick the indicated fights.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Crashing the BCS Party (Jeff Bailey)

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, Boise St, TCU, Utah and other mid-majors are here to stay in college football.  Some people say they only play 1 game seasons; others say they should not be considered for a National Championship period; while others believe the shoe does fit for Cinderella.  Both TCU and Utah have been around for 70+ years in Division 1, but they are still considered mid-majors.  Some people don’t even realize TCU actually won the National Championship in 1935 and 1938.  As for Boise State, they have only been in Division 1 since 1996, but have done nothing but wreak havoc on the BCS and win games.  In the 14 years of playing D-1 ball, they have amassed 135 wins.  As a comparison, Ohio State won 130, USC won 126 (including 2005 season), and Florida won 141 in the same span.  Cupcake or not, that is a very impressive feat. 

Is 2010 the year of the Bronco?

  People cannot say that BSU, TCU, and Utah are weak teams because they play weak opponents.  Sure they are in weaker conferences, but that doesn’t mean their team is.  All three of these teams win and win big in their conferences; just like any other great team would do if they were in the same situation.  Currently TCU is #1 in the country in total defense, with Boise State 3rd and Utah 6th.  On top of that, all three teams are in the top 20 in offensive yards per game, and they all rank in the top 10 in points per game.  The only other team to be in the top 10 in both points per game and total defense is Ohio State.  To me, that sounds like a total team package.

  The BCS has not been so kind to these mid-majors, but when they do make it, they have proven that they belong.  BSU is 2-0 in BCS games, while TCU is 0-1 (lost to BSU last year in Fiesta, aka the Cop-out Bowl), and Utah is 2-0.  To increase their BCS value, all three of these teams scheduled 2 teams from automatic qualifier conferences this season; and they are currently 5-0 in those games.
When will TCU get respect?
  In recent years a national championship contending team has had 1) a great defense, 2) a great offense, 3) a Heisman candidate, and 4) a great resume.  In my mind these teams, especially Boise St, fit that mold.  The one thing keeping them back is their conference, which is not their fault at all.  How many times do these teams have to prove they belong on the next level of college football?  To me, they have proven themselves more than enough.  Should these mid-majors be considered for a national championship?  I mind it is an easy answer…hell yeah!