‘Bama dynasty compares to Wooden’s?
Speaking of Alabama’s quest for a third consecutive national football championship, Mike Lupica of ESPN’s Sports Reporters said: “If they pull this off, we may be watching one of the great college sports stories of all time. Because if they win three in a row, in this time in college football, they’re going to start to feel like (John) Wooden’s UCLA’s teams in college basketball.”
Tim Brando of CBS Sports Network criticized LSU coach Les Miles for his futile and persistent attempts to run the ball on Alabama: “There are times when O-line head coaches get hard-headed. This just into Les: Your offensive line is not what you thought it was.” Brando also faulted Miles for playing QB Zach Mettenberger with a wobbly knee after his team was down two touchdowns in the fourth quarter. “He’s already got a brace on that knee. I was surprised he let him take that beating and be almost incapable of walking off the field.”
Brando said, “Alabama is far and away the nation’s best team. However, I still believe the SEC catches up to you. At some point in time I see a loss in their future.”
Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen after Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel passed and ran for 493 yards and 5 TDs in a 51-41 victory: “He starts running from sideline to sideline, twisting around, juking one way and then another. And all of a sudden he launches the ball 30 yards down the field. I’ll be honest, there’s no way to draw up a defense to defend that.”
The Houston Chronicle’s Randy Harvey on Gary Kubiak’s expected return to coaching this week: “That is good news in a season that has been woefully short on it. The Texans have lost their silver linings playbook.” Harvey cites negative thinking as part of the team’s problem: Kubiak talking publicly of his team being “in a funk,” and defensive coordinator Wade Phillips saying, “We need to change the atmosphere that’s been going on.”
Texans safety Ed Reed said his team was “outplayed and outcoached” by the Arizona Cardinals. Having to be both interim head coach and defensive coordinator may have been too big a reach for Wade Phillips, who wasn’t able to keep the Cardinals off balance on either offense or defense. Reed wanted more variety: “Eventually they’re going to figure out what you’re doing if you’re doing the same old things.”
Reed, who played 13 snaps, hit harder off the field than he did on it. The Texans cut him two days after his coaching critique.
Tennessee Titans tight end Delanie Walker saw no reason to give the Jacksonville Jaguars much credit for beating his team and winning their first of the season: “It’s disgusting. . . . I’m embarrassed. A team that’s 0-and-8 comes in here and beats us? . . . The Jaguars? Come on. . . We just got whooped by the Jaguars.”
Speaking on ESPN Chicago 1000 AM, Chicago Bears receiver Brandon Marshall compared the Detroit Lions to a little brother wanting to knock down his bigger brother: “Detroit Lions, sit back, sit in your little city, fix your financial problems. You can’t come with us right now.”
Kevin Sherrington of the Dallas Morning News faulted Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for having misplaced confidence in defensive tackle Jay Ratliff, “even though he was coming off a major injury, had been charged with DWI; had warred with the owner; had warred with the medical and athletic training staff; and had warred a little less with opponents each of the last four years.”
On CBS Sports Network’s Monday QB, Phil Simms said of the Indianapolis Colts: “They want to have a power running game. . . . The problem is they don’t have a power offensive line, so it‘s not working. It looks terrible. And then they have to throw, and Andrew Luck, who is maybe the strongest quarterback in the NFL and arguably the toughest, he’s getting hit at a record pace again this year. Everything they tried to avoid is happening to the team, like it did last year.”
On the same show, Boomer Esiason said of the Colts: “I also think the loss of Bruce Arians to become coach of the Arizona Cardinals is significant.”
Ed Reed will vouch for that.
Another Monday QB, Steve Beuerline, sees problems for Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos: “They miss Ryan Clady big time on the left side. Peyton’s not getting sacked, but you do see him getting knocked down a lot more, and we all know nobody hates that more than Peyton.”
Randy Moss on Fox Football Daily cited a lack of chemistry in the San Francisco 49ers’ passing game: “There really wasn’t a lot of chemistry there when I was there. We did individual routes but we did not work on the passing game. My strength was going deep, but we didn’t throw one deep ball in practice.”
Jim Rome of CBS Sports delighted in Tampa Bay’s Monday night win over the “South Beach Bullies” from Miami: “The same team that made Richie Incognito a – quote — honorary black guy just made the Buccaneers an honorary NFL team for a night. . . . The same tough guys who ran up thirty-thousand in dinner tabs on a teammate’s dime only ran for two yards. . . “
Bill Reiter of FOXSports.com was a guest on Rome and said of the Indiana Pacers: “They’re the best team that’s not the Miami Heat when the season ends. And they have a really good chance to beat the Heat in a seven-game series. . . . Paul George is becoming an MVP candidate right before our eyes.”