Chat with Ivan Maisel
Send your questions now and join Maisel in The Show at 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday!
Ivan Maisel (2:00 PM)
Hello, everyone. My podcast with Beano should be up soon if it isn't already. Same for the I-Formation. Check them out. Beano is in rare form today.
Scott (Oxford, MI)
Will 8 wins get Notre Dame to a new years day bowl?
Ivan Maisel (2:01 PM)
I assume that if ND is 8-4 that the Gator Bowl would take them. That's a New Year's Day bowl. But I haven't asked anyone at the Gator Bowl.
Dave (San Diego)
While I respect the Pac-10 for its aggressive non-conference scheduling, I am beginning to think they should change strategies. Do you agree? We are all seeing the likes of Texas Tech (who has played NOBODY) being undefeated and in the Top-10. I would argue that if Oregon State played Tech's schedule they'd be undefeated as well, and a ranked team. Bottom line, is the Pac-10 hurting itself with its scheduling?
Ivan Maisel (2:02 PM)
I don't think the Pac-10 is hurting itself. It is true that being undefeated helps. But the minute that Tech plays a good team and loses, it will drop like a rock. On the other hand, schools with tougher schedules benefit in the computer ratings and with voters, at least the ones paying attention.
Big game this weekend between Georgia and LSU. The thing is I'm a Gator fan and not really sure who I need to root for this weekend. LSU keeps winning it makes our win that much bigger but if Georgia wins their ranking will be higher come next week. PLEASE HELP!
Ivan Maisel (2:03 PM)
Good question. I would say root for LSU. The first thing Florida has to do is win the SEC East. The more losses Georgia has, the better.
Bob (Boston, MA)
Ivan, what's your take on BC? How do yout think they'll finish this year? Also, do you think they'll ever break out of their 8-4, 9-3 string of seasons and make a run at the national title? Or will they never get the recruits to climb to the top?
Ivan Maisel (2:05 PM)
I think BC is one of the big surprises of the year. I wrote a short note on the defense in I-Formation. Let's see how the Eagles replace injured linebacker Brian Toal. That will be a key to how they negotiate a difficult schedule in the back half of the season.
Todd (University of Dayton, OH)
I was wondering what your thought were on Ohio State being a national title contender?
Ivan Maisel (2:07 PM)
If Ohio State beats Penn State, the Buckeyes should be in the mix. As tempting as it is to hold 2006 and 2007 against Ohio State, you can't do it. Ohio State will have enough trouble explaining away the USC loss. They shouldn't have to answer for last year's games.
Ben Jammin' (Parts Unknown)
Georgia Tech has 3 of their last 4 ACC games at home, does Paul Johnson win the ACC Coastal/ACC Championship in his first year? He's done a hell of a coaching job!
Ivan Maisel (2:08 PM)
I think GT is the best team in the Coastal. It seems a lot more clear than the Atlantic. Now it's even harder to figure out why it took so long for somebody to get Paul Johnson out of Annapolis.
Brent (Atlanta, GA)
Hi, Ivan. Really enjoy your writing, even if you think the 97 Huskers are overrated. I did some research and came up with an interesting stat. Here are defensive performances from Texas, Alabama, and Florida against the same Arkansas team: Team ARK's YDS Texas 191 Bama 309 Florida 361 Texas is the only aforementioned team with a defense not ranked in the top 20 in total D. Perhaps the Big 12 offenses are really so good that it skews the numbers for Big 12 D's. Perhaps Big 12 D's would fare better in another league, like one with no top 20 offenses and only 2 good qb's. The conference has certainly been reevaluated in a negative light based on last week's Mizzou debacle, especially by SEC graduates/bloggers such as Schlabach and Low. Thoughts?
Ivan Maisel (2:10 PM)
I have seen Oklahoma twice and Texas once. I think the OU defense is good and the Texas defense is very good. But the offenses in the Big 12 are the best in the nation. I think that has to be taken into account when assessing the Big 12 defenses. I'll let Mark and Chris defend themselves.
Pat (Blacksburg, VA)
Hey Ivan, Can you please explain to us how Wilbur Hackett Jr. could ever be allowed to work in the league again? I've seen that video from different angles and do not understand how he could possibly keep his job.
Ivan Maisel (2:11 PM)
I love what Les Miles said Monday. He was disappointed that Hackett didn't wrap up Garcia. The thing is, we don't know what kind of grades Hackett has had through the years. I don't think it's fair to judge him by one play. But it does remind me of that, "You gonna believe me or your own eyes?" line.
Bobby (charleston, sc)
Odds of Clemson making a bowl game? And if so, odds of Dabo retaining the Head Coach position?
Ivan Maisel (2:12 PM)
I wrote in I-Formation today that Terry Don Phillips wants to see Swinney "earn" the position. I'd say odds of making a bowl game are good.
Ivan, ND fan here who is scared to death. I could honestly see them finishing 6-6 IF they beat Wash this weekend. Please tell me that they will beat at least 1 of Pitt/BC/Navy.
Ivan Maisel (2:13 PM)
I think they beat Navy. Maybe Pittsburgh. Not BC.
Austin W. (Fairfax, VA)
Ivan - do you see Colt having a chance to win the Heisman with far lesser numbers than a Sam Bradford or a Chase Daniel? If so, is it because he beat them heads up or is it more because winning is what matters most, not stats?
Ivan Maisel (2:15 PM)
If the Horns go 13-0, his stats will be good enough. If they don't, it will depend on what Oklahoma does, I think. I'm not sure how good a shot Daniel has. I suppose if Mizzou wins the North and there's a McCoy-Daniel rematch in the Championship Game, or a Bradford-Daniel match, then Daniel will be measured again.
Greg (San Diego)
Ivan, what you are missing regarding the Pac-10 scheduling issue is that other Big-12 teams benefit by beating other "ranked" teams who haven't played anybody. So if Kansas now beats Texas Tech its a great win, but if Oregon beats Oregon St, "they were supposed to" because OSU isn't ranked. And you know better than anyone that writers don't pay close attention to this stuff.
Ivan Maisel (2:17 PM)
I hear what you're saying, Greg, but I disagree. And Oregon State is the exact wrong example to use after the Beavers beat USC. That's why I think Penn State has street cred coming from the Big Ten. The JoePas dominated Oregon State.
But to be 8-4, doesn't ND have to beat both Pitt and BC?
Ivan Maisel (2:18 PM)
Assuming a loss to USC, yes. I don't recall whether ND has to be 8-4 to be in the Gator Bowl mix or not. I'm not doing bowl projections this year, so I haven't looked at the bowl rules in a while.
Ivan, love your chats. Thoughts on Pitt? Looks like Wanny is turning things around and has great talent.
Ivan Maisel (2:20 PM)
I am really impressed with Pitt this year. They have been under the radar -- another I-Formation plug here; I wrote about this topic for today -- because of the state of the Big East and the season-opening loss to Bowling Green. But the Panthers have been solid this season.
I heard a rumor you might be lecturing in my class on Thursday?
Ivan Maisel (2:21 PM)
No, lecturing is what I do to my 11-year-old when I find an empty potato chip bag and an empty root beer bottle on the floor in front of the couch, as I did last night. I am talking to a journalism class tomorrow at Penn State.
David (Athens, GA)
Ivan, do you think the NCAA will change eligibility rules for circumstances such as a coach being fired? Seems to me that if an athlete committed to a school because of a certain coach, he should be free to leave at no penalty (i.e., sit out a year).
Ivan Maisel (2:23 PM)
The NCAA rules make it clear that a high school senior should commit to a school, not a coach. History makes that clear, too. Any kid who ignores that, or doesn't get that advice, isn't doing his homework.
Let's hear some love for Eric Berry. Haven't heard much about the fact that he set the all-time SEC interception return yardage record, which stood for 40 years, and did it in only 1 1/2 seasons. He plays on a down team right now but I would have to say he has to one of the front runners for the Jim Thorpe award at this point in the season. What do you think?
Ivan Maisel (2:24 PM)
Berry has been terrific this season. Chris Low blogged today about UT using Berry on offense given his ability to run in the open/broken field. I won't see much of the Bama game because I'm covering Penn State-Ohio State. But I will check out the play-by-play to see how Berry did.
Travis C. (Lake Highlands)
Maybe I'm an optimist, but I think Baylor beats Nebraska and A&M. What are the chances that the Bears also upset Texas Tech to go to six wins?
Ivan Maisel (2:26 PM)
Baylor is on the upswing but I don't think the defense is ready for Graham Harrell. Not based on what I saw against Oklahoma.
Clay (Oakland, CA)
How would the Rose Bowl select participants if USC and Penn State play in Miami?
Ivan Maisel (2:28 PM)
The Rose Bowl would get the first at-large selection. The rule book is fuzzy about whether it would get the second at-large selection. It just says it would get "two replacement picks."
Mark (Columbus, OH)
Hey Ivan. Do you think Alabama can hang on to their #2 Ranking now that Terrence Cody is out for at least two games (hopefully only two, just in time for LSU)? Can Tennessee pull the upset this weekend?
Ivan Maisel (2:30 PM)
Losing Cody will hurt. But I don't think Bama loses in Knoxville. I do wonder about how effective he will be at LSU coming off a sprained MCL.
If USF and Pitt win out, with Pitt getting the automatic bid where does that leave USF?... possible BCS bid?
Ivan Maisel (2:32 PM)
If USF is 11-1, it will depend on who else is out there. I would assume that the Bulls would be ranked highly enough that one of the other BCS bowls would select them. Keep in mind, though, that if a Boise State or Utah or TCU secures an automatic bid, that leaves only three at-large bids. Figure the Big 12 and the SEC runners-up will get one. That leaves one.
LSU or UGA?!! LSU Defensive eats up UGA offensive line??
Ivan Maisel (2:33 PM)
I would think so, yes. Keep in mind that Mark Richt has lost only four games in the other guy's house in eight seasons.
Andrew (Ithaca, NY)
Pet Peeve: What's the deal with the diction trend of preceding a proper noun with the article "a"/"an"? Ex: a Sam Bradford, a Chase Daniel, an LSU, a Georgia?
Ivan Maisel (2:34 PM)
Ithaca or Cornell?
hi, do you think florida state can win out until they play the gators and make the rivarly more intersting this year?
Ivan Maisel (2:35 PM)
I don't but don't misunderstand me. I think FSU is very much improved this season. I just don't believe that the Noles have separated themselves from the rest of the ACC by enough for me to say they'll go 10-1.
Ivan! If you could have lunch with any past/present NCAA football coaches (any division), who would it be, and why?
Ivan Maisel (2:38 PM)
Gen. Neyland, who was at Tennessee from 1927-1952, with a few seasons away from football in there; Rockne, of course. Bryant. Dan McGugin, who coached at Vandy in the 1920s. This story isn't exactly as I recount it here, but it makes me laugh every time I think about it. He once told his team to go out there and beat Michigan (I think) because those damn Yankees had killed his grandfather. Vandy won the game but McGugin was from Ohio.
Jim (South Carolina)
Why has Syracuse not fired Greg Robinson yet?
Ivan Maisel (2:39 PM)
I don't know. Someone told me today that since ND plays Washington this week, ND could fire Willingham twice. Gallows humor! Get your gallows humor right here!
Guy (Reading, PA)
Who do you like in Columbus Saturday night and why?
Ivan Maisel (2:40 PM)
I like Penn State because of its experience on the line, experience and speed on the edge, and because Daryll Clark is playing as if he has experience.
Andrew (Ithaca, NY)
Current Cornell grad student via Texas (Hook Em). But seriously I find the language extremely annoying. I think Mel Kiper Jr. started the trend with draft prospect analysis and it spiraled out of control...
Ivan Maisel (2:41 PM)
I asked because my wife went to Cornell. It's a way to say something without being definitive. Gives you wiggle room.
Clay (Oakland, CA)
Would you rather cover one game live every week, or spend saturdays in a media room and watch every game possible?
Ivan Maisel (2:42 PM)
Live. Live. Live. You can't replace being at a game, and taking your readers to a stadium, and talking to the players and coaches afterward. It makes all the difference in the world.
Will J (Portland, OR)
Which game will you be at this weekend?
Ivan Maisel (2:42 PM)
Ivan, If Graham Harrell were to lead Texas Tech to an undefeated season.. would his stock in the upcoming draft change significatly? Seeing how everyone outside of Tech fans think he is a over-rated system-QB.
Ivan Maisel (2:43 PM)
I don't know what the NFL people think of him. But a Heisman and a national championship run barely got Troy Smith drafted. Just remember, for the all the talent evaluation that the NFL does, their batting average on quarterbacks is in the flip-a-coin range.
Hey Ivan! Whose your pick for the non BCS spot in a BCS game. Surely there will be one right? I dont' see UTAH beating both TCU and BYU they'll fall to at least one of them. Does BSU have enough if they win out to hold of a 1 loss TCU team?
Ivan Maisel (2:44 PM)
I doubt it. But if Boise goes 12-0, it may get an at-large bid even if it's not automatic. I doubt it but it's possible.
You don't have to be definitive because it also leave open the option of one of the many other Sam Bradfords when us say "a Sam Bradford" instead of simply "Sam Bradford'?? Come on!
Ivan Maisel (2:46 PM)
My mom the english teacher would love this discussion. Too bad she barely knows how to use the internet. When I say "a Sam Bradford" I'm saying "Sam Bradford or someone like him."
Ivan, I know you are against a playoff system, but isn't that the exact reason we have so many lousy out of conference matchups? If a team were guaranteed a shot at the championship by winning it's conference, it wouldnt be so afraid to schedule high powered teams out of conference.
Ivan Maisel (2:47 PM)
Maybe so. But keep in mind that a lot of teams won't schedule good non-conference games because it means that they have to give up a home game the next year (home-and-home). I'm not sure the end result would be better games, as you suggest.
Steve (Los Angeles, CA)
Ivan, is everyone giving the SEC a pass based on past years performance? Their top out of conference wins to date are the 7th place team in the Big East and the 8th place teams in the Pac-10 and ACC. No doubt they could be good even great but why do they get resume points for beating each other when they haven't been tested by the other BCS conference top teams?
Ivan Maisel (2:48 PM)
Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain, Steve.
Ivan Maisel (2:49 PM)
It's always good to finish up with a classic movie reference. Talk to you next week.