Running around to Give you the Reacharound


Bawlin' Cawlin' 09-09-10: Lock Box Edition

This is our Lock Box. Stuuuurdy.

Sure, it's early in the year. Not much point in revealing Sue's vaunted and on-point Top 10 list just yet, right? So we can have it on the initial record, though, look for big things this year from Oregon (OBJ's Top 10 Surprise), who only has to beat up on a weakened [possible?] and unstable PAC-10) and - you're not going to believe this, but - Georgia (SJF's Top 10 Surprise) to spice things up. Two years ago Sue's had Alabama in our Top 2 all year long, while everyone else saw them in a "building year." Count on Oregon and (I guess?) Georgia to finish in the Top 10 at year's end.

But, 2010 college gridiron being as such in the infant stage, let's officially enact something just as legitimate as College Football pre-and-early season rankings. The Runaround Sue's Lock Box!

Answering the most pressing questions in sports, we'll break down exactly how these unforeseeable events will transpire. Picking baseball, basketball and football boils down to a crap shoot, so being able to guess +60% in all of those is the same as predicting amongst an infinite amount of possibilities, right?

The questions for our Inaugural Box:

Will AJ Green's absence - or arrival - this season mean much in the grand scheme of things to the bulldogs' season?

But we have to believe that CMR (7-2 in bowl games, recruited #1 overall pick NFL draft) was and is still a top ten coach. It couldn't have all been the talent that Donnan (4-0 in bowl games, stellar recruiting classes) brought in, right? I mean, I love David Greene, but did you ever believe it was him (concession that he's the second all-time winningest quarterback in NCAA history) - and not the road map of CMR - that brought Georgia into national significance?

Plays like this won games and created memorable seasons, not Greene's unbelievable talent:

Word is Murray had never heard of 44-Flyback Rooskie before he met with Greene.
He should know it - and use it - well by now.

Georgia had plenty of close games in the early 2000s while they worked to gain reputation in the SEC. If Georgia can go 3-1 in the games AJ's out, his arrival back in the mix will mean a chance at an SEC Championship berth. Many in the bulldog nation feel Georgia's going to lose to South Carolina or Arkansas, perhaps both. If the Bulldogs have two losses when AJ's back to roast defensive backs, it will be too late.

But with a redshirt freshman quarterback, the Bulldogs' best player out for 1/3 of the season and a backfield lacking a standout all-purpose rusher, the coaching staff will be nearly more instrumental than the players on the field. Bobo's handling of his green quarterback will be key. Grantham's new defensive scheme and how quickly the defense picks it up will be key. And how CMR coaches his games against some of the best program heads in football will be the ultimate decider between a great and mediocre season.

So that's what Georgia needs this year. For Richt to step up and be the coach we all knew - and now think - he is. I don't care how close the wins are. Give me gut-wrenching slobber-knocking fist fights all year long. We need a road map to victory, Coach.

Basically, Georgia fans, if you still have faith in your Coach,
you have faith in Friday's 10-2 prediction.

Prediction: AJ's absence will matter. He's one of the best players out there, and arguably the best wide receiver in college football. His comeback will be meaningful, because the bulldogs will be in the hunt for the SEC East crown.

Will Steve Nash have a noticeably precipitous drop in effectiveness this season?

Sergeant Friday edited this post, deleting my thoughts on this topic and leaving behind a strong-worded short note kindly asking me to focus on football in September. I suppose he feels strongly about it. More on Nash later.

I know, Steve, I know. What gives, right? Don't worry: you'll get the treatment.

Prediction: TBD

Will Tiger Woods regain his form? Will Tiger Woods eventually overtake Jack Nicklaus?

Let's not be weak and take the easy road here. Of course Woods is going to regain at least some of his previous, championship form. Dominating? Probably. As intimidatingly and frighteningly imposing he was before? Doubtful.

The score: Woods has 14 majors, Nicklaus 20.

Tiger Woods is nearly 36 years old. Jack Nicklaus won his last major at August National in 1986 at the tender age of 46.5 years-old. Between the ages of 36.5 and 46.5, Nicklaus won six majors.

Are the courses different, most would say more difficult? Is the level of competition higher? Is Tiger working on surgically repaired shoe-fillers? Sure. But all Tiger has to do at this point is replicate the Golden Bear's prime-to-twilight years, and he'll match his majors wins.

The record will be here that SJF disagrees with me here, so there's likely an obnoxiously batty wager borne from this discussion similar to our $1000 "Pitchers will/won't be wearing helmets in 8 years." Silly boys.

Mark me down for yes. I'm not positive he'll break Jack's record, but I know he will at least match it.

Prediction: SJF says no, Jammin' certain he'll match 20 within 10 years. Should we change Sue's Lock Box to Sue's Time Capsule?

Will Boise State go undefeated?

This topic has been discussed too much already, so let's just go with the predictions.

Prediction: Joe Friday sees a loss to Oregon State. OBJ likes an undefeated Boise State at season's end.

Undefeated, does Boise go on to the BCS National Championship game in Arizona?

Prediction: Runaround Sue's collectively and emphatically says: No.

OBJ: 4-1
Joe Friday: 2-3

A solid start, but too early to be talking percentages.

Last Week's Picks
Virginia Tech (+2) over Boise State (-1)
Oregon State (+13.5) over TCU (+1)
Memphis (+22) over Mississippi State (+1)
Florida/Miami of Ohio OVER 52.5 (-1)
LSU(-6.5) over UNC (-1)
UGA/Louisiana Lafayette OVER 51.5 (+1)
Maryland (+6.5) over Navy (+1)
UCLA/Kansas State UNDER 44.5 (-1)
Michigan (-3) over UCONN (+1)
Kentucky (-3) over Louisville (+1)

Big blow to Sec Snobs everywhere with Ole Miss forgetting how to play football last weekend. Methinks they're just too worried about their mascot, what with not being able to secure the rights to Admiral Ackbar and everything.

It's a trap!

Today's Picks
Lots and lots of terrible games last week, and we're barely into ACC conference play. Several marquee match-ups this weekend.

Joe Friday 1: LSU (-9.5) over Vanderbilt

Joe Friday 2: Oklahoma (-7) over Florida State

Joe Friday 3: Tennessee (+12.5) over Oregon

Joe Friday 4: Alabama (-12) over Penn State

OBJ 1:
Georgia (+3) over South Carolina
Why does South Carolina always give Georgia fits? Anyone outside the SEC should still watch this game. These two teams always make it interesting...

OBJ 2:
Georgia/South Carolina OVER 46.5
...and usually low-scoring, too. The Gamecocks have an excellent defense and can finally stop the run this year, but Aaron Murray may just be the real deal.

OBJ 3:
California (-8.5) over Colorado
Here's hoping I'm wrong on this one. A win for Colorado can only make the SEC look better after Georgia disgraces them in Boulder, especially with Tennessee inevitably awaiting an absolute drubbing in Neyland Stadium at the hands of Oregon this week.

OBJ 4: Rice (+3) over North Texas
Rice? It appears Rice is a Conference USA team with 5,000 students. Tuition is $33,120 and the school features a student body comprised of 40% minorities! Plus their campus is very pretty. Go Owls!

And now, for your viewing pleasure, the sponsors of Sue's Lock Box.

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