30.Sep.2013 Media Portrayal of the SEC

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It’s a bye week, so I thought a good time to discuss something that’s at the root of my recent disdain with college football. The media portrayal of “teams that matter” (the same 10-15 teams we hear about every year), and more specifically to this post, the top teams in the SEC.

Off the top of my head, I thought I remembered seeing more SEC bias/favoritism after the USC/Texas championship game, so that would be the following year, or 2006 season. It could have been a bit later, though, as this article points out:

In 2008, ESPN and the SEC signed that a 15-year, $2.25 billion agreement allowing the network to televise the conference’s games. In addition, ESPN owns the rights to televise all BCS games, including the national championship game.

In 2011-2012, ESPN and its partner ABC broadcast thirty-three of the thirty-five college bowl games. Which is to say that for all intents and purposes ESPN, a subsidiary of the Walt Disney Company, the most successful spinner of dreams and fables in world history, owns college football as a commercial entity.

Because ESPN essentially owns college football, the SEC agenda it pushes invariably sets the tone followed by other media. In February 2011, more than half a year before the start of the football season, ESPN placed three southern teams in its top-five ranking for 2011 and published an Internet story beneath the headline, “SEC teams dominate early look at 2011.” The story referred to the rankings as though they were the result of some organic process.

A more honest headline would have been: “We’ve invested $2.25 billion in the SEC and we’ve decided to tell you, yet again, that SEC teams will dominate college football. Surprised?”

I suggest reading the entire article, as it brings up many great points.

So for years we’ve heard that the SEC has 4 or 5 titans at the top who beat up on one another. And for this reason, any loss between these teams is forgivable; that the loser should only drop a few spots in the polls. We saw this over the weekend with Georgia/LSU. LSU only dropped 4 spots in the AP, sitting at #10, where they can theoretically still make the championship game. Due to this bias, ESPN now has 3 SEC teams in the top 10. The odds of one making it to the championship AGAIN are good (~30%).

We also hear the SEC is all about defense. After this weekend’s shoot out, I wondered what the spin would be come Monday. I joked with a friend that ESPN would probably spin the SEC as an offensive conference now. That they wouldn’t ever admit maybe some of these defenses are overrated, or at least vulnerable/inconsistent. No, we must maintain the perception that the SEC is all powerful. This morning’s headline reads: “where did the defense go?” and I thought, “Great, they are questioning the SEC!”. But if you read the article, it is all about how good the offenses are.

Welcome to the new SEC, where “three yards and a cloud of dust” has been replaced by “three straight passes and duck!”

Did Chip Kelly leave Oregon for the NFL or the Deep South?

After five weeks of the 2013 season, seven SEC teams rank in the top 50 nationally among FBS teams in total offense and scoring. SEC teams are averaging 6.52 yards per play — more than any other league in the country — and more than 450 yards of offense.

What a joke.

There is also a perception that the SEC breads exponentially more pros. But if you look at the facts, that simply isn’t true. For example, last year they put 42 players in the NFL, while the ACC put 37. The Big East only placed 12, and the SEC has a 16-15 record (since 1998, the first year of the BCS) against the Big East and 3-8 bowl record.

What’s my point? Just that, while the SEC is a solid, top-heavy conference, it is not what the media portrays. There is a clear, vested interest by ESPN to maintain a certain perception and force it onto us as reality. It, along with other factors, is ruining the sport. Regarding Georgia and LSU…I don’t know if they have bad D or great offense. Mainly because the SEC, in general, will not schedule any tough OOC games where we can gauge them against diverse styles and opponents. LSU and Georgia have actually scheduled respectfully, with TCU and Clemson (Georgia lost). I guess we’ll find out when these teams play in bowls. What happens if LSU scores 3 in their bowl game? What is the spin then??

In short: good conference that is top-heavy, but not nearly as great as ESPN wants us to believe. It is a perception vs reality scam controlled through the media.

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  • wannabeav says:
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    The spin machine at ESPN is the most under-remarked upon phenomenon in college football today. I’d like to see more analysis by competing media about: (1) the Nike connection to their College Game Day crew and other personal services contracts their front men have; (2) the obvious inconsistency of ESPN propping up the expansion of the bowl system, by owning half a dozen of the games outright, yet, at the same time, having the talking heads of Fowler and Herbstreit (principally, though not exclusively) become the loudest megaphones for moving towards a playoff system. (and it’s these guys who will continue to promote the need to expand to 8, and then 12, and then 16). Yes, the pro SEC bias exists, but it has merely supplanted the pro Big 10 bias that “Herbie” routinely brought to the table, echoed by Corso (before his unfortunate stoke limited his utility on air, which, sadly, has been reduced to the ridiculous head gear opera at the end of every game day. The ESPN monopoly definitely needs to be challenged, which is why the new Fox sports network is a welcome development.

    • angry angry says:
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      Regarding #1, I was actually doing some research on that. I found that Walt Disney allowed Oregon to use Donald Duck back in the 1940s. Is this true?

      It’s interesting that Disney/ESPN and the Ducks would cross paths 60 years later under totally different circumstances. Again, this is a win win for the parent company, Disney, as they get to promote their favorite new team, their ESPN subsidiary, and also their amusement parks and cartoons all via that mascot. No wonder they love the Ducks. Seems that Duck is in an increasing number of their commercials, right?

      • Will Overhead says:
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        Random Blog

        Most of the above most likely came fromWikipedia and
        DisneyWiki.

      • wannabeav says:
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        yes, my understanding is that Walt Disney himself authorized the use of the “Donald Duck” image for the helmet logo, so long as there was no other commercial application. “Puddles” (which must be a latter-day moniker because I never remember hearing it used until the last few years) has become ubuiquitous on the Game day broadcast. He’s appeared in ads, he’s in the Big n Rich intro now banging on a drum, and I note that Capital One has him in the mascot contest this year. I have the suspicion that Gameday choreographs the Ducks appearances on the Gameday broadcast, which themselves have become commonplace, because they are simply too well planned out to be a “student’ product

      • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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        The legend is that Walt Disney gave a verbal/handshake agreement years ago to one of the former Oregon athletic directors, allowing them to use the Donald Duck character as the school’s mascot. Disney tightened their grip on the mascot recently because of Oregon getting loose with their use of his likeness (interestingly enough, Disney was upset he showed up in the I Love My Ducks videos)
        Now, Disney has decided to allow Oregon to “have” the mascot as their own, in costume form. All other printed Duck logo’s though, are controlled by Disney.

        http://www.oregonlive.com/sports/index.ssf/2010/03/disney_uo_mascot_part_ways.html

      • whiskeysoakednapkins says:
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        raise your hand if you give two shits about the U of O and donald duck

    • angry angry says:
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      Speaking of Fowler, any time Oregon State does something noteworthy (upset, ranked, etc), he seems to always misspeak and call them either “Oregon” or “The Ducks”…many analysts do this so I don’t know. Honest mistake or just more promo fuel? It happens so much, and I don’t see how you can confuse the teams. They are stark contrasts.

      • carltogr carltogr says:
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        The misquotes, commercial time, and ESPN inserts of the Ducks do add-up….

        1) A few years ago in 2007 I was working in Georgia/South Carolina on an engineering projedt when the Beavs won the Baseball title. Low & behold the title in sports section of the local news paper (I believe it was the Argonaut….I’m too lazy to go dig it up….I still have the article somewhere) dedicated to the NCAA baseball said “DUCKs keep their title”, even though the meat of the article clearly mentioned “Beavers”, “Oregon State”, etc multiple times — the Beavs won late the night before and the editor must not have cross-checked it. Anyhow, I wrote and called the editors of the newspaper, and pretty much gave them an earful. Even though most of my colleagues who I worked with out there knew I had gone to OSU, they still came in to congratulate me….”How about them Ducks?”….and then I would have to remind them that it was indeed the Beavers that won (many of them actually knew better and still gave me shit for it….knowing the Ducks are the rival).

        2) Why is it that the Ducks air commercials of their fan store during our games? I seem to remember this “random” phenomenon going back to around 1999 and especially during the Fiesta bowl years. It drove me nuts, because even when we beat them and they were behind us, the Ducks were right there, in the review-mirror. The Ducks have to have some kind of control over this….bastards!!!

        3) The misquotes of the announcers are vey common, and show lack of respect in my opinion. They’ve called us “Okie State”, “Oregon”, “Ducks”, you name it.

        These are all attempts — and they are gaining more success all the time — at associating the state of Oregon with UO and the Ducks. We can’t seem to get the recognition because that damn Duck is right there to remind people what to associate winning and the state of Oregon with. Look up the history of the Portland Beavers baseball team….at sometime back in the 20s-30s a group got together to rename them the “Portland Ducks” (not sure if it had to do anything with UO, but I don’t see how it could not).

        Luckily Oregon will always be the “Beaver State”…..surprised Phil Knight and politicians haven’t tried to get it changed.

        • benzduck says:
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          Oregon Duck Store ads run during OSU games because someone at Oregon is paying the network or cable channel to run its ads during football games in general, and probably games likely to be watched by people within driving distance of a Duck Store in particular. Think of it this way: the Oregon athletic department is helping make it possible to air OSU football games. You should be thankful they have such largesse.

          The question should really be “why isn’t the OSU athletic department placing ads for the Beaver Store in their own games?”

          As for misidentification, Oregon had the same problem as OSU for decades. There were countless examples of “University of Oregon Beavers” during the period when neither team had any kind of national exposure. Fortunately, that 28 year streak in Corvallis did a lot to separate the two, and Uncle Phil has taken care of the rest.

          This probably isn’t the biggest problem in Corvallis right now, in any case.

          • carltogr carltogr says:
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            ….yeah, that is sad. I just attended the 5K run to open the Beaver store in Corvallis….would be nice for them to take our “territory” back.

    • ObjCritic says:
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      “The spin machine at ESPN is the most under-remarked upon phenomenon in college football today.”

      Agreed, but they seem to control to much of the message and mindshare. I cannot stand watching ESPN, but know people that can leave it on ALL. DAY. LONG.

      Unfortunately, I was once required to attend a Disney management training seminar. They talked about their past, their down phase in the 70s – 80s when they were almost taken over by – gasp! – a media conglomerate, then went on to brag about the ESPN and other acquisitions and act as if we – as trainees – were supposed to celebrate those acquisitions instead of recognize the hypocrisy. They spent extensive time talking about how they manage (manipulate) customers at their theme parks; their shameless. It’s an organizational mindset that it’s ok. It extends to their management of ESPN and other media acquisitions; control as much of the customer experience and perception as possible.

      I don’t trust Fox to add any balance in this issue. I expect the sport, like others before it, to become unwatchable for me.

      Already at this point, I find this board and many of its users more entertaining and informing then watching NCAA football.

      • wannabeav says:
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        I used to be an avid viewer of Gameday but it has become way too formulaic, and it’s too long of a show now too. I’ll have it one while preparing and eating breakfast before hitting the road to Corvallis. The best critiques about ESPN are to be found on sat rad, folks like Jack Arute, Dan Patrick, and other ex pats.

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    If LSU scores 3, the spin will be that they were so beat up playing that rough SEC schedule that they were just exhausted by end of the season, or maybe they were let down because they thought they belonged in the National Championship game.

    When I watch SEC football, I do have to say, the top 3-4 teams pass the eyeball test. Not sure if you watched the GA/LSU game, but the athletes on defense for UGA were just animals in the 2nd half. It was pretty fun to watch them flying around.

    The problem I see with collegiate athletics is that success breeds success. There is no equalizer like you see in pro sports such as salary caps or the draft. SEC football puts butts in the seats, which draws the big TV deals, which brings in the $$$, which builds the programs to new heights, which brings in the best players. Oregon is one of the few small market teams that has been able to jump into that group, all because of the money flowing into that program from their papa bear donor.

    Stanford is a rare example of a team that has broken into that upper echelon lately, without a huge amount of fan support. I have an easier time pulling for a team like Stanford than any of the other “top” teams because of this reason.

    At the end of the day though, it’s all just entertainment. Just like in the movie (or book) industry, the big summer action blockbusters get the most publicity, and the biggest budgets, and draw the biggest crowds, despite 90% of them being the same regurgitated crap. Many fans are just drawn to that and shell out their money for that entertainment. The minority of fans are purists and want to watch the independent film and value that type of entertainment more than the blockbuster type. Those films will still exist, despite the blockbusters, and maybe the fact that they don’t have a big budget is partially why their fans enjoy them so much.

  • angry angry says:
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    If LSU scores 3, the spin will be that they were so beat up playing that rough SEC schedule that they were just exhausted by end of the season, or maybe they were let down because they thought they belonged in the National Championship game.

    Spot on.

  • wannabeav says:
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    it is interesting that both Oregon and Stanford now have their own link button on the ESPN college FB main page, which in itself is a clue as to how the powers that be are shaping opinion.

    • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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      Stanford is Phil Knight’s “other” university. I guess it’s sortof win/win for him lately in the Pac-12 with Oregon and Stanford consistently at the top.

  • Bill says:
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    Larry Scott has done a good job getting the PAC12 into the spin machine. The coaches go to ESPN headquarters and do a ton of interviews and get more spotlight onto the conference. Now with national Thursday/Friday night games, and games on ESPN and ESPN2 on Saturdays.

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/9729454/sec-apologist-concedes-the-pac-12-year

    I’ve seen numerous other articles this year about how the pac12 is getting closer to the SEC.

  • Brady says:
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    Let’s not overlook the NCAA in their SEC bias either. Of all the major scandals in the last few years, USC, UNC, Miami, Ohio State, it is never the SEC. Take UNC for example, the NCAA spent 2 years gathering info and even longer to decide on penalties. When there has been a hint of trouble in the SEC with Cam Newton and Johnny Manziel, they took a weekend and found them both innocent. Hilarious. All these other school are giving money, but not the SEC, right? It is similar to how they handled Oregon, don’t bite the hand that feeds you. The NCAA is afraid of the SEC.

    • angry angry says:
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      Tees!

      Yeah it is as if the NCAA has lost control to ESPN, so now they are passively and meekly trying to maintain this illusion of authority. They do it by penalizing strong teams from these other conferences, which make it seem like they have authority and care about corruption, while also making life easier for the SEC (e.g. if Ohio St and USC are weak, SEC team xyz can take that bowl spot). Disney trades on the NY Stock Exchange. So they will manipulate the conference they’re invested in to gain max profit. Mark Emmert is a talking head just as much as Herbie. It is rotten to the core!

      • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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        I think this talk of the SEC bias is a little off. They have won the NC for the past few years, and Oregon was in one of those…..and lost. The Pac 12 needs to win a NC and then the talk will start changing. I dont blame the news media for talking up the SEC.

        There is a bias in the BCS system, on who gets into that NC game so the start of the 4 team playoff will be the big opportunity to change the media perception.

        • Jack says:
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          How often in the last 8 years have the two best teams played in the BCS CG? How many times would one loss SEC teams get in even when other teams with better SOS or better records were more deserving? How many championships would the Pac 10/12 have won if they had played in it every year as well? We’ll never know because we were never granted the leeway the SEC is granted every year before a single snap is made. When OSU beats a dominant USC in 2006 and 2008 you don’t hear about how deep the Pac is and how blah blah blah. But USC would have stomped either of the teams in either BCS CG those years.

          The point is that perception isn’t reality except in the world of BCS manipulation, where it’s everything.

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    Mannion gets Pac 12 POY again

    https://twitter.com/OSUBeaversFB/status/384764968152756224/photo/1

    • ObjCritic says:
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      I think he could hit 7 TDs in a single game…It’d be great if as long as they were contested games…

      WSU could be an opportunity. Be interesting to see how well WSU defends Cal’s passing game on the road.

  • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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    For a good example of the hype machine and SEC bias at work, consider the case of Texas A&M.

    Joining the SEC last season (2012) somehow transformed Texas A&M into a Top 10 team both last season and this season — a status Texas A&M was unable to achieve during any of its previous sixteen years as a member of the Big12 Conference.

    Details provided below, based on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas_A%26M_Aggies_football

    Texas A&M joined the SEC last season (2012). Texas A&M ended last season ranked #5 in the AP and Coaches Polls. Texas A&M’s freshman quarterback (Johnny Manziel) was awarded the Heisman Trophy.

    So far this season, Texas A&M is 4-1, and is ranked #9 in both polls (AP and Coaches).

    Prior to joining the SEC last season, Texas A&M was a member of the Big12 Conference. During its sixteen years in the Big12 Conference (1996-2011), not once was Texas A&M ranked in the Top 5 in either poll. Or in the Top 10. Only once in the Top 15 (1998). And only one Top 25 ranking since 2000.

    Coincidence, or SEC bias? The answer seems obvious…

    • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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      Should say: “…not once did Texas A&M end the season ranked in the Top 5 in either poll. Or in the Top 10. Only once in the Top 15 (1998). And only one Top 25 ranking since 2000.” I did not check midseason rankings…

    • angry angry says:
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      Great points.

      Manziel is a special QB, so the argument can be made he’s the reason they’re ranked so high, not the conference affiliation. I thought Klein was the best player last year.

      Speaking of Heismans, the SEC didn’t have one for 10 years (1997-2007). Since then, they have 4 of 6. In the opening post I mention it seemed like in 2006/2007 this SEC madness started…

      Maybe the Beavs don’t have to fire Ranker. Maybe they just need to join the SEC.

      • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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        Gotta wonder if they were able to land Manziel because they could tell him he’d start as a (RS)frosh in the SEC? That would be a bigger selling point to a recruit vs starting in the Big12

        • whiskeysoakednapkins says:
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          more than likely they landed Mangina because they offered the most cash

      • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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        Agreed that Manziel is a special QB. But Texas A&M also had a really good QB the year before (Ryan Tannehill, the 8th pick in the NFL draft and now playing QB for the Miami Dolphins), With Tannehill, Texas A&M put up big numbers in their last year in the Big12 Conference (39 ppg and 490 ypg). That didn’t get Texas A&M much love in the rankings. With Manziel, Texas A&M put up slightly better numbers in the SEC (44 ppg and 558 ypg), and ended up ranked #5. Why? Because this was done against allegedly superior SEC defenses (including Alabama’s), so it was considered more impressive. Key word being “allegedly”….

        • Jack says:
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          eaTme started 2011 in the top ten in both polls but went 7-6. If it wasn’t for USC, they would have been… well… the USC of that year.

          • Jack says:
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            But remember it was already known they would be joining the SEC. So the pre-season hype still holds.

          • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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            Exactly. It’s an endless loop of circular logic, with SEC hype justifying more SEC hype.

            According to ESPN, it is beyond dispute that the SEC is the best and toughest conference in college football. Once this bias and hype is taken as a matter of faith, it follows that statistics of SEC teams should and do “mean more”. That is, the records and stats of SEC teams should get a “+” fudge factor, while the records and stats of non-SEC teams should get a “-” or discount factor.

            To see this bias at work, just look at the current college football rankings. in the AP Top 20, there are 15 undefeated teams (including top-ranked Alabama). There are only five one-loss teams in the Top 20. And EVERY one of those five one-loss teams is from the SEC (#6 Georgia, #9 Texas A&M, #10 LSU, #13 South Carolina, #18 Florida).

            How can this be? Because a single loss in the SEC can be disregarded (given that the SEC is the best and toughest conference in football). Meanwhile, each win by an SEC team is accorded extra status (because the SEC is the best and toughest conference in football — even though many of the wins by SEC teams are against cupcake non-conference opponents).

            If you believe the hype, it would seem to follow that even strong teams from other conferences would be hard-pressed to move the ball against big-boy SEC defenses, much less to win many games in SEC play.

            But then how do you explain the startling success of Texas A&M in 2012 — its first season in the SEC — where it rolled up impressive offensive stats (44 ppg and 558 ypg) and a record of 6-2 in SEC play (11-2 overall)? Simple, in 2012 Texas A&M was an SEC team.

            Around and around it goes….

          • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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            One added (extra-cynical) thought. Manziel was given the Heisman in 2012 partly to explain Texas A&M’s surprising success in its first season of SEC play. Manziel’s Heisman shows that the success of Texas A&M in SEC play wasn’t because most SEC teams are no better than good teams from other major conferences. No, it’s because Texas A&M had Superman playing quarterback as a freshman in 2012.

    • Timber2002 says:
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      Texas A&M may have been helped by the SEC affiliation, but the bigger thing was getting Kevin Sumlin. He made Houston a national player, and now Houston is a nobody again. We are lucky Arizona State couldn’t get Sumlin to sign. And here’s to hoping that USC doesn’t take him away from A&M.

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    Surprised we haven’t heard this sooner from Will’s dad. Hopkins is being moved from TE to OT for next year.

    Connor Letourneau ?@ConnOregonian 4m

    Will Hopkins, who is redshirting this year, is no longer a tight end. Now an offensive tackle

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    ESPN exhibits their SEC bias by naming Sean Mannion their National Player of the Week…..wait…what? They even got the team name correct.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/ncfnation/post/_/id/84057/video-national-player-of-the-week-7

    • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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      although the caption below the video says he only tossed 4 TD’s Saturday. Like I was saying after the game, this type of publicity has to be the reason Riley decided to leave Sean in there. It was all about padding those stats and getting Sean some national recognition, which in my opinion, is great for recruiting.

    • JD says:
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      Talk about a bias, Mark Schlabach was absolute shit in that short video. It was crazy how much he pointed out all of Mannion’s and the Beavs weaknesses, including questioning if Mannion’s numbers were only because of weak competition. Not exactly a ringing endorsement for giving a guy national player of the week.

      • Beavergopher Beavergopher says:
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        No shit. Backhanded compliments.

      • Sad.Clown says:
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        “It was crazy how much he pointed out all of Mannion’s and the Beavs weaknesses, including questioning if Mannion’s numbers were only because of weak competition.”

        You’re acting like that is false..

    • ObjCritic says:
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      Riley tweeting all of this?

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    Mannion also up for the Manning award again this week. So far leads the voting. Wouldn’t hurt if you took the time to give him a thumbs up.

    http://www.allstatesugarbowl.org/site.php?pageID=19&newsID=638

  • Timber2002 says:
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    Lately there’s actually been talk on the radio (Scott Van Pelt’s show anyway) about whether the Pac 12 might be the best conference. The pac 12 north gets a lot of love in particular, even on ESPN.

  • Cali Beav says:
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    Dads side of the family are all huge Bama fans so I watch a ton of SEC ball. Honestly the speed of the game feels a lot different. But part of me thinks that just the superior quality of ABC/ ESPN or CBS broadcast compared to what we get out West.

    Clemson looks legit this year. It sucks that if they win out or have 1 loss they will likely not get in over a SEC school with a similiar resume.

    It would take a miracle to see a game like Clemson vs. The Ducks or Stanford

    • Brady says:
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      Is there ANY scenario that doesn’t include a SEC team in the championship game? Alabama has shown it can lose the SEC championship game and still make the national championship. And give me a scenario where the team winning the SEC championship doesn’t make it in. If LSU, UGA, or Bama win it, they would be in for sure.

      Clemson is good, but 1 loss by them and they will fall below several 1 or 2 loss SEC teams.

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    I want one of these, although I have my doubts the decals will hold up to a little rain.

    https://www.facebook.com/OregonStateBeavers?v=app_272887412730429&rest=1

  • Joe Avezzano says:
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    Joe Avezzano is shocked that Angry would hold such cynical views about the influence of media money on college football.

  • ObjCritic says:
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    ESPN talking about SEC QB from LSU being an emergent heismann candidate. Granted, he’s played different competition, but his numbers – 13 TDs, 1 INT – are nowhere near Mannion’s ridiculous numbers.

    I anticipate a shootout on the Palouse, with OSU struggling to contain the air raid. I also think that by spreading the beavers out, WSU will have success running the ball.

  • ObjCritic says:
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    S-I talking about SEC QB from LSU being an emergent heismann candidate. Granted, he’s played different competition, but his numbers – 13 TDs, 1 INT – are nowhere near Mannion’s ridiculous numbers.

    I anticipate a shootout on the Palouse, with OSU struggling to contain the air raid. I also think that by spreading the beavers out, WSU will have success running the ball. Mannion will have a good opportunity to add to his TD total.

    • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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      Mannion doesn’t even get in the conversation on Heismanpundit.com. It’s funny, because they have Mariota at #1, but when you look at his numbers (through 1 less game) they’re actually not as impressive as Mannions, aside from the rushing yards/td’s. His completion % is worse. They note that he was playing in bad weather last week, so that’s used as an excuse for his low numbers last week, yet Mannion played in windy conditions and still put up pretty impressive numbers. Mannion’s biggest fault is playing for a team with a crappy defense.

      http://heismanpundit.com/2013/09/30/week-6-heisman-watch/

      • ObjCritic says:
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        I think OSU’s weak schedule hampers Mannion. If he could keep this up through the remaining schedule, he’d definitely be in the conversation.

        • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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          UO’s schedule has been equally weak, if not weaker considering they have already had a bye week. Their biggest opponent so far is Tennessee, who barely handled South Alabama last week. South Alabama had a chance to tie in the final few minutes but blew it.

          Mariota benefits from having a solid all around team surrounding him. Unfortunately, that’s who wins the award usually. Best player on the best team (or at least one of the best teams)

          • orangejulius orangejulius says:
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            the ducks DID play that powerhouse, nichols state, though.

          • ObjCritic says:
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            Mariota also benefitted from last year, all the off-season talk, exceptional athleticism, and being part of a high profile, winning program.

            I’m willing to bet that when Tebow was rolling over non-conference foes – as SEC loves to do – nobody was critical of his schedule….

  • Beavergopher Beavergopher says:
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    Question for the hoops folks. Minny signed a kid from Bothel, WA, Josh Martin. At one time was in ESPN 100. Anybody know anything about him? Did CR recruit him?

    • Jack says:
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      He’s good. He was a UW lean forever, but something unknown happened which dropped him from that list. OSU initially showed interest, but the UW lean was too heavy, and we moved on.

      Think Collier with a little more hops, less defensive skills (but can block shots) and somewhat of an outside shot.

      • Beavergopher Beavergopher says:
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        Thanks. Sounds like a good get for Pitino Jr.

  • ObjCritic says:
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    OT – Imagine Chip back in the PAC at USC. From Gil Brandt:

    “3. Chip Kelly, Philadelphia Eagles head coach: It would not shock me to see Kelly, 49, leave Philadelphia after one season, especially if the Eagles have a down year. Kelly knows better than most the kind of job this is and can be. He has never been in pro football before this season, and to tell you the truth, I’m not sure he’s made for it. He reminds me of Steve Spurrier and Bob Stoops; they were destined to be college coaches. Kelly is similar. Being around him a little, I know he’s a rah-rah, enthusiastic guy. Guys like that don’t cut it for very long in the NFL. What he did at Oregon, transforming an OK program when he got there to what it is today, is nothing short of remarkable. This one could potentially get messy because of the sanctions leveled against Oregon. Kelly received an 18-month show-cause penalty, which would make his re-entry into college football problematic, but not impossible.”

    http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap2000000251997/article/jack-del-rio-among-top-candidate-to-replace-lane-kiffin-at-usc

    I know Brandt has been around a LONG time, but is he every very accurate, or does he trade on a long-ago career with the Dallas Cowboys?

    I could see Kelly back in college ball in <= 4 years, but I don't think it'd be west coast again…

    • oneoldbeav says:
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      I agree with the <==4 years, hadn't thought about the west coast thing but I think you are spot on there as well. Chip never seemed at home in the west.

    • whiskeysoakednapkins says:
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      fuck Chip Kelly. He can DIAF for all I care. Piece of lying gutter trash

      • Sad.Clown says:
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        You mad bro?

        • whiskeysoakednapkins says:
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          sorry ass clown

          • Sad.Clown says:
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            It’s alright. Just crack open a new Bud Light, and have yourself a good old fashioned wife-beating session.

          • whiskeysoakednapkins says:
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            Thanks! Will do! After I finish with your mom ducky. ass.clown

  • progressivebeav says:
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      I dunno, Mullaney’s blind catch probably should have been top 3 – that was amazing focus.

      Watch the OSU sideline when Cooks is making that 52-yard catch in double coverage. His teammates know he’s got it, and they are nearly in disbelief at his ability.

  • progressivebeav says:
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    Update on the b-ball suspensions. CR sounds confident….

    http://www.oregonlive.com/beavers/index.ssf/2013/10/oregon_state_basketball_morela.html

    Moreland will return for the Beavers’ Jan. 9 home matchup against Stanford, meaning he’ll miss nearly half of the regular season (14 games). Collier will come back Nov. 13 against Portland, one game into the year.
    ….

    “If we end up having a good season despite all of this, hip-hip hurray,” Robinson said. “And if not, that’s the result of what happens when you do stuff you’re not supposed to do.”

    • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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      Dang, Moraland must be getting the repeat offender version of the punishment. I didn’t realize a little smoking would get a guy suspended for such a long period. I figured it would be the typical 1 to 2 non-conference games. It’s not like he was using performance enhancing drugs. If anything, it’s the opposite.

      • Jack says:
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        The OSU book is 1/10th the season for the first offense and half the season for the second. Three strikes and you’re out. Coach Rob lobbied to diminish both but couldn’t save the repeat offender. That’s what he meant by extensive talks.

        It’s nothing like down here where Nikegon doesn’t have to worry about its athletes smoking pot. They just don’t do it. They keep it in their glove box and use it like incense to make rental cars smell better on red eye drives. But it’s not like they do it then et hammered and break into women’s houses late at night only to pass out. And it’s not like they get recruits so high they tweet pictures of themselves with bongs and stoned people.

        Those things just don’t happen down here in this lovely strip mall with trees.

    • ean says:
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      they should just cut Moreland loose. Bringing him back mid-season isn’t going to do anything. The dude could get started on his career in a Russian or Israeli league.

    • mckalk says:
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      I was kind of hoping that CR would be “permanently suspended” by December 1st.

  • Jack says:
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    No surprise here:
    http://www.oregonlive.com/beavers/index.ssf/2013/10/oregon_state_football_mike_ril_27.html#incart_river

    But boner better get over there and beat down that first comment. Someone hijacked his persona and is just making him look like a complete idiot. What are pollyannas going to do when Riley eventually retires? It’s as if they have this mega-inferiority complex, and they just know that nobody worth anything will ever come to Corvallis to coach. They’re denying history thrice with such an argument. And they’re denying that Riley/Erickson/Riley have done anything of any lasting worth which would be considered anything remotely resembling a legacy.

    They’re basically saying OSU is some suck-ass destination that stinks, and Riley is just a plug-in deodorizer who is temporarily covering that stink.

    Why do pollyannas hate Corvallis and OSU so much?

    • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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      Because U of O has indeed convinced them they are the little brother, and are inferior by definition. They actually believe it.

      OSU has no boosters even remotely close to Phil Knight. Boosters who want their school SUPERIOR to the rest, and are willing to work to make it so.

    • mb says:
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      Not sure pollyannas hate Corvallis. Most probably prefer certainty even if it may mean mediocrity. And they also react defensively to an American Culture that wants to instantly fire everyone over any perceived injustice . The butt kissing of the existing emperor may be a resistance to change and fear of the future. Sometimes you do have to make that blind decision to cut the strings and hope for the best. And sometimes you need to see things thru with a bunch of pushback of the existing crew and an eye open to pounce quickly in the future when opportunity presents itself.

      • bendbeaver bendbeaver says:
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        If the pay gets bumped up, wouldn’t top coaches take a good look at it? or am I just talking crazy? Things that bother people in here, such as extended patience and appreciation from fans, and low pressure from the Athletic Dept, might actually be a pro for a coach looking for the next stop. Stay with me, not that I want a coach who’s looking for low expectations, but one that would rather have those pressures taken off the list of ‘shitty things about my job’. It’s an opportunity for a coach looking to move a team to the top of the conference and see hurdles to that as an opportunity.

        • Jack says:
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          I think the pay might be the basis for their argument sometimes. But even that’s silly. If we go out and look for a new coach on the same budget, then we don’t want a good coach to replace Riley.

          “Who is OSU going to get for the same money?”

          I’ve heard it more than once. And the answer is always the same. If you’re coming from that position, then you don’t have a clue what the discussion is about in the first place.

  • bone says:
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    Connor Letourneau ?@ConnOregonian 2h
    Vaz sat out of practice today because he dropped a weight on his foot, Riley said. Doesn’t know when he’ll practice again

    Too bad for Vaz, but I guess it will be good to get Vanderveen a few more meaningful snaps in practice and possibly some game action.

    • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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      Hurts just thinking about it. Hope he has a speedy recovery. I still think he will play a role this season. Mannion is going to get knocked out of a game a some point, just because some of the better defenses we face will bring the bull rush and knock him on his ass, regardless of personal fouls. Last week I saw a UCO player tried taking him out below the knees. Looked like he was fortunate to avoid injury on that play.

      • oneoldbeav says:
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        I fear you are right about the likelihood of Sean getting knocked out of a game. What I’ve wondered though, is whether or not Mary-oh-TAH is more or less likely to suffer the same fate this year. Seems a mobile QB would be exposed more than a pocket passer. Maybe that would only apply if every D followed the rules, no?

        • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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          Hairy -Scro-Tah does a pretty good job of keeping himself out of harms way. He seems to do a good job of avoiding the pass rush or getting rid of the ball early enough that he doesn’t take the hit.

          • Sad.Clown says:
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            As opposed to the stone statue that is Mannion.

          • Jack says:
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            I’m pretty sure that’s the whole narrative… that you just repeated… recapped… recapitulated, if you will.

            ?

    • Beavergopher Beavergopher says:
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      “Vaz was scrambling with the weight when it fell out of his hand.”

    • mckalk says:
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      Witnesses confirm that Vaz was not touched when he “fumbled” the weight.

  • Jack says:
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    The good… apparently someone else is excited for Chris Brown.
    http://centralvalleyfootball.com/brown-gets-first-carries-of-oregon-state-career/

    The bad… it has been confirmed that a private plane took off from somewhere in Oregon and landed in SoCal.

    The ugly… Ahmad Starks’ hardship waiver was denied by the NCAA because Champaign is more than 100 miles from his home. That’s a little crappy considering what they’ve done for other similar situations.

    • Numbers says:
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      No IFR flight out of Corvalis to SoCal recently.

      http://flightaware.com/live/airport/KCVO/departures

      • Beavergopher Beavergopher says:
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        PBH took a Greyhound to throw off the reporters.

      • Jack says:
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        I just said somewhere in Oregon to SoCal. One probably went to Wisconsin as well… or came from.

    • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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      One of my buddies just flew from Portland to LA and then to Vegas on a private jet as part of a contest he won to see Motley Crue in Vegas. It was just 2 nights ago. Maybe it was him

      • ObjCritic says:
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        Geezus. Motley Crue in vegas. That musta been ugly…who’d they open for?

      • Numbers says:
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        What kind of crappy private jet service makes a connection? Did he have to change planes!

        • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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          It was a 2 part trip. Still waiting to hear details but sounds like they spent a day/night in LA (where motley crue is from) and then onto Vegas, where theyre playing a new stint at the Hard Rock for the next month or so.

          • bendbeaver bendbeaver says:
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            Did he get to rub Gold Bond on Vince Neil? Metamucil Pounders!!!

          • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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            yes, during the Dr. Feelgood performance.

    • mckalk says:
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      Starks should have received a hardship waiver just for dealing with CR’s psycho-babble for three years, but then again Starks took numerous fade away three pointers that clanged off of the back rim during this tenure, so maybe he needs a year to think about shot selection!

    • mckalk says:
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      After you posted this I was curious about Illini reaction….some of them are really tweaking….I’m not sure they are even talking about the same Starks I came to know and “love”. Apparently, he was going to be the saviour of their program in 2013/14.

  • CVO beav says:
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    NCAA is rapidly losing credibility. Suspending Justin Heard at Ark St for giving his scholarship money to his younger brother (also on football team). Meanwhile Oregon and Miami are barely slapped on the wrist. As an instituition it has lost its way.

  • ObjCritic says:
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    Real meat of the pac-12 schedule coming up. Every week, it seems there’s an attractive game from a viewership standpoint and from a conference and national implications standpoint. Games that look like real highlights to me, with a clear and equitable lack of regard for the UA and ASU programs:

    UW @ Stanford this weekend (Week 6);
    Ducks @ UW week 7;
    UCLA @ Stanford week 8;
    UCLA @ UO and Stanford @ OSU week 9;

    UO @ Stanford week 11
    UW @ UCLA week 12;
    UW @ OSU week 13;
    OSU @ UO week 14;

    I have to think the Pac has one of the better remaining schedules in the entire country. I’m sure the SEC feel the same about themselves.

  • oneoldbeav says:
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    OT, but nice to know: Eggers tweets “OSU tight end Connor Hamlett got clean MRI, according to coach Mike Riley. Sat out Tuesday practice but will be fine for Wazoo game”

  • Beavblazer Beavblazer says:
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    Brandon Sprague (@BrandonSprague) tweeted at 10:35 AM on Wed, Oct 02, 2013:
    Oregon State commit, Isaiah Manderson 6’10 250, was updated to a 4-star recruit by ESPN for class of 2014 http://t.co/wBgG5lJIOJ
    (https://twitter.com/BrandonSprague/status/385457975147520001)

  • ObjCritic says:
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    Mannion getting some publicity from the Washington Post, with a comparison to (contrast with) Mariota:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/colleges/qb-sean-mannion-lighting-it-up-for-oregon-state/2013/09/30/b3cbeab8-29ab-11e3-b141-298f46539716_story.html

    • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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      Glad to see OSU getting some love and attention from one of the leading media outlets on the East Coast (the Washington Post — just recently bought by a West-Coaster — Jeff Bezos of Amazon).

      I added a comment to the WaPost article, in the hope of influencing some random WaPost sports page reader who might have a son who is a super-talented HS quarterback considering his college options. OK, probably a wasted five minutes on my part. But hey, you never know….

      • oneoldbeav says:
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        I don’t think your comment was a waste of time at all. I found it well organized and concise; pointing out several areas of interest to east coast writers and fans along with potential recruits. OSU can use all the publicity it can get and your input was first rate.

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