It's been far too long, but Two Dudes, One Post is back! And you know it's a special occasion because someone we've awaken Bill from his posting slumber to chime in. This week we touch on Killah Cam, the Boise Chokejob, and whether my roommates will ever speak to me again after our holiday party.
1. Championship Weekend has arrived in college football, but unfortunately there's a giant black cloud hanging over the SEC Championship, Heisman Trophy, and likely the National Championship as well: the Cam Newton Scandal. How do you see this playing out? Will Auburn end up vacating everything? Will they end up with nothing or maybe just a slap on the wrist? And lastly, if you were an Auburn fan would you be able to fully enjoy what's going on knowing that there's a good chance everything could be wiped from the books just a few weeks later?
Mattare: There is enough smoke in this situation that there's not only going to be a fire when it clears, there's probably going to be a volcano. There are plenty of rumors bouncing around that speculate as to how deep this corruption runs and I think how big a deal this blow up into comes down to whether the NCAA wants to sweep this under the rug a bit and hope the 24-hour news cycle moves on and people forget about it or if they want to attack and gut the real problem. The temporary declaration of eligibility leads me to believe they're leaning toward the latter.
In the end you have to think everything will be vacated--it's just a shame that the Heisman will now be vacated twice in six years. If they allow him to keep everything under the ridiculous farce that "he didn't know what his father was doing" then I will be shocked and appalled. As my buddy Brad pointed out, how dangerous a precedent will this set moving forward? Will parents be able to just shop around their kids with no real fear of repercussions as long as their kid maintains plausible deniability? It's just a terrible situation.
And if I were an Auburn fan then wouldn't have a conscious about these things and would justify it by saying Bama probably does it too. So I'm sure they'd be more than willing to enjoy the accolades in the present and deal with the consequences later.
Bill: I see Auburn vacating the wins while Cam played there. I can also see them losing scholarships and getting a bowl ban for a couple years. Sounds serious, but is it? What happens after the punishment is handed down? They'll go right back to being a middle of the pack SEC team. So they really have nothing to lose. If I was a fan I would sit back and enjoy this. I'm assuming Auburn fans never cared too much about ethics in the first place so they might as well enjoy the success.
2. In one of the wildest games you'll ever see Boise State choked away a shot at the national title and lost to Nevada in overtime. This signaled the end of a Butler-esque Cinderella run. Did Boise State blow its only chance at a National Championship? Will they continue to knock on door or have they hit their ceiling as a program?
Mattare: Yes, I think this was Boise's best chance at a title. You had a year where they started in the preseason top five and really had only two teams with a stone-cold stronger case for a berth the national championship game. It's a shame, I would've loved to have seen David take on Goliath on the ultimate stage.
In terms of ceiling, I think they have reached it. If Peterson stays they'll continue to be very, very good but the ceiling is going to be sneaking into a BCS game and not winning a national title. I think the best way to maximize their ceiling isn't joining the Mountain West or any conference for that matter--it's going independent. Unfortunately their other sports add absolutely no value to really any conference so they wouldn't be able to arrange any sort of deal with the Mountain West so that'd be tough to pull off; but if they really want to challenge for national titles they need to take the BYU route just embarked on and barnstorm as an independent. I'd love to see it, I just don't think they can realistically make it happen.
Bill: I think they will perpetuate the non BCS school in the national title game discussion. They upgrade conferences to the very solid Mountain West, which I think will bring them slightly more recruiting success. If Peterson stays I still think they have a good shot to run the table most years.
Getting back to that horrendous loss this weekend! Is that kicker on suicide watch? Thanks to the west coast time zone we saw the end at approximately 1:45 am which led me to declare it the most amazing sporting event I had ever seen.
3. If Oregon or Auburn is upset this weekend who deserves to be the next team in line for a shot at the National Championship and why?
Mattare: It comes down to TCU and Wisconsin. The Badgers have been the most impressive team over the past month as they steamrolled through the Big Ten, but I'll give the nod to the Horned Frogs. All they've done is go 24-0 the last two regular seasons. Give them a shot--if they win the non-AQ schools will have a totally redefined place in terms of respect from their peers. Plus I'd love to see them stick it to that idiot Gordon Gee from Ohio State. Nice bow-tie you toolbox.
Bill: I think Wisconsin should get the nod. The same old strength of schedule argument knocks TCU out of the picture. Stanford lost to Oregon, so there's no way Stanford should get in ahead of the Ducks. Beyond them Wisky is the team remaining. They have an unstoppable rushing attack and Tolzien makes good decisions. Also a loss to 11-1 Michigan State looks good. I think they are the 4th best team right now but Stanford shouldnt go for the aforementioned reason.
4. TCU is now officially headed to the Big East in all sports. Is this a good move or a bad move?
Mattare: Good move if you're TCU. You pick up a chance at an auto-bid to the BCS in a league that they could roll through based on recent history. They also expand their exposure to the entire east coast and help their bottom line since they're guaranteed a bigger part of the BCS pie every year. Plus, the geography isn't as massive an issue as people think; makes as much sense for TCU to play conference games in Pennsylvania and New Jersey as it does to play them in Utah and Wyoming.
In terms of their other sports, they're doomed. Football is the ultimate cash cow though so that'll be more than enough to make up for their complete futility in every other sports arena.
Bill: Bad move. They will get crushed in basketball and they grab headlines in football now winning 11 games every season. I think they would still win at least 9 or 10 a year in the Big East but they still wouldn't get to a title and they wouldn't be able to carry the torch for all the small time programs out there.
5. Both of you have gotten to see Rich Rod face your teams for three consecutive years. First of all, if you're the AD would you can him after yet another disappointing season in Ann Arbor? Second of all, as a fan of a Michigan rival do you want to see him fired? Lastly, if Rodriguez is retained will the Wolverines turn the corner next year and become a legitimate contender in the Big 10?
Mattare: If I'm the AD could get Harbaugh and find a way to guarantee he'd be in Ann Arbor for the long-haul then I'd drop Rich Rod in a heartbeat. I don't think that's realistic though because eventually Harbaugh wants to land in the NFL (hopefully this offseason so ND doesn't have to deal with him ever again). As a Notre Dame fan I want to see Rodriguez there for another couple years because their ceiling is not nearly as high as it's historically been with him at the helm. Sure, the offense will be explosive, but the defense is broken beyond repair at this point and there's not a lot of help on the way in terms of highly-touted recruits.
I don't think the Skunkbears will be a legitimate contender as long as Rich Rod is coach--not next year, not three years from now. He's a great offensive mind and found the perfect player to make it go in Denard Robinson, but there hasn't been anything to suggest they can do anything to improve an indescribably atrocious defense. Rodriguez and Michigan have been a complete mismatch from day one and it's been a joy to witness. I can only hope that this era lasts another couple years and when it's over they hire someone not named Jim Harbaugh (Les Miles anyone?).
Bill: I think you have to fire him based on how he's handled the defense. There's just no hope for that unit and he doesn't understand that he has to take responsibility for their performance.
Personally, I really don't want to see him fired. I always enjoy Michigan games now! We're not even with them until we beat them 10 times in a row, then they can go shopping for a coach. Unless the defense gets a one year turnaround like Illinois did with Vic Koenning they will not be a legitimate contender. I think their offense gets even better but that's clearly not enough in a Big 10 that is going to have the most depth it's had in years with the addition of Nebraska.
ON TO THE RAPID FIRE FINISH!
Bill: It's basketball season! Do you like Kobe in spite of Lebron at this point?
Mattare: I'll never like Kobe, but my hatred of Lebron has definitely ratcheted up. I can't wait for the game vs Cleveland tonight. There will never be a more venomous crowd in sports history--it'll be like if Michael Vick playing a game at an animal right convention two years ago.
Mattare: Along those lines, can you think of a situation where there'd be a more hostile crowd at an American sporting event?
Bill: No, while Lebron didn't commit any violent crimes he may have done worse in the eyes of Cleveland fans. A new age diva turned his back on an old city that held all their championship hopes in him for a warm weather team with terrible fans that will never appreciate him as much as they did.
Bill: Congratulations on your engagement. Does Gaby know about this blog? Don't lie.
Mattare: Yes, she does. Does she read it? No. She says she's essentially forced to listen to everything I write on here anyway so it'd be redundant to read it...and it's not like there's any Penn State articles posted that she could learn anything from.
Mattare: My house is throwing a Christmas party on December 18th. Among the confirmed guests are Slatington's own John "Hollywood" Yackabonis and Steven Stanley Reed. Chris Marciano is on the fence. How do you see this playing out? Will I be on speaking terms with my roommates on the 19th?
Bill: I haven't seen Chris or Steve in awhile so I'm going to go ahead and not give them the benefit of the doubt. You will be asked to move out after Reed wakes up your roommates at 4am with an elbow drop.
Bill: ONCE AND FOR ALL: CHIPOTLE OR QDOBA?
Mattare: Chipotle and IT IS NOT EVEN CLOSE.
Mattare: You haven't really posted since PSU got throttled by Iowa two months ago. What do you say to the people who say you've been a coward for not coming on and taking your medicine for ass-whoopings at the hands of Iowa and Ohio State (among others)?
Bill: I'm sorry, I've been living the rockstar life ever since WNG took off. Drunk off fame. No more late nights for me--I will once again dedicate myself to writing about the most predictable program in the country and trying to make it interesting.