Chat with Mel Kiper
Send your questions now and join Mel this Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (1:13 PM)
We've got Mel!
Chris (Buffalo, NY)
With another year of development, could Daryl Clark be a early rounder draft pick?
Mel Kiper (1:15 PM)
I don't know about early round. But he's certainly going to be a guy to keep an eye on. He has all the skills you look for. He throws the ball, he can run. He can create. He's going to lose his top three WRs to graduation. He's going to have to adjust to the new look WR. He's also going to lose his LT, his C. They'll all be leaving. It will be an adjustment period. But there's no question with his skills as a runner and a thrower, PSU is an 8-4 team this year. He's one of the great stories. It's amazing that he's not getting more Heisman talk.
Don (LA, CA)
The whole ranking system is a joke. Florida and USC are playing the best football right now and yet there is a snow ball chance in hell these two teams will meet in the Orange Bowl. I think it is gotten to a point we should really defer to Las Vegas to find the best two teams in the country.
Mel Kiper (1:19 PM)
I think what we have to do is get a playoff. Even Barack Obama, when he talked to Chris Berman, he said he was fed up with the computer rankings and we need a playoff. He said an 8-team playoff and that's right now. Hopefully now with the president in favor of a playoff, we can get it going. If he feels that strong, maybe that can work for our benefit. First of all, you can't rank teams. Look at the NFL polls, they change week to week. The Giants last year would have had no chance. Upsets occur. Just because you have teams ranked, it doesn't mean they're better. I think the whole college system is a joke. And for people to think it's working properly, it's a joke. Once the regular season ends, for me, personally it ends. I don't get a lot of pleasure watching inconsequential bowl games. At the most, you should have 50 teams in bowls. Maximum. You don't need 32 bowl games. That would be a reward for a successful season. You shouldn't be rewarded for a 6-6 season. I think the whole college dynamic would have to change.
Mel Kiper (1:19 PM)
I agree, all of these rankings, I don't even look at them. The only time I see them is if I'm watching something and they talk about the rankings.
Mike (College Park, MD)
Mel, Break down tomorrow night's match-up between VT and MD. Who wins?
Mel Kiper (1:22 PM)
VT's season has been one of some ups and downs, basically. It's been a case where they've had a tough start. Then they won some close games and of late, they've been struggling. They've had an up and down season. They lost so many key players on both sides of the ball. They're at home. Maryland has been the most inconsistent team this year. This is a game where they had off last week, so they have an extra week to get ready. Both of these teams should be well rested. Maryland, on this national stage, has played their best football against solid teams. The key thing in this game will be Maryland's offensive line. The great matchup is Heyward-Bey against Harris, the great WR against the great CB.
Mel Kiper (1:22 PM)
On paper, I think MD is the better team.
Ryan (Gainesville, FL)
Has Stafford's stock dropped at all after two blowout losses. sure the kid has a cannon, but he seems to make some pretty bad decisions.
Mel Kiper (1:24 PM)
No, not at all. If you look at that, how about all of the bad decisions Jay Cutler made at Vanderbilt. It's about not having great talent around you. Look at Georgia's line. They don't have a great WR core. They ahve one great option and he's a true freshman. They don't have the OL and the defense has been depleted. Georgia was just outmanned against Florida. Stafford has to play catchup and there will be some picks and some throws that people will wonder about.
Mel Kiper (1:25 PM)
You can't judge QBs how they play in so-called big games. It's a misnomer on QBs. If you go back in history, Peyton Manning went 0-4 against Florida. Ben Roethlisberger played at Iowa his senior year, he was terrible early in the year and he wasn't good against Iowa. Daunte Culpepper played at Auburn his senior year and threw some picks.
Mel, is Michael Crabtree the best player in college football righ now?
Mel Kiper (1:27 PM)
I think you could make that argument. Every time Texas Tech plays, he's the best player on the field. That's what I've said all year. It's like Florida, Percy Harvin is the best player on the field when they play. Crabtree is uncoverable. He's a power forward in traffic. He's dynamic in terms of how quick he is. He's tremendously competitive. He loves to block. Andre Ware compared him to Andre Johnson. I thought that was a great comparison. Crabtree is eligible for this draft.
Brett (Gainesville, FL)
Mel, what are your thoughts on a Big 12/SEC Challenge in FBS similar to what we see in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge in basketball? Would that help clarify the rankings as well as provide one great opening weekend of football?
Mel Kiper (1:29 PM)
Yeah, I think if you could schedule it properly. But schedules are made so far in advance. We're in a cycle right now where The Big 12 has so many great QBs. But who's to say that in 3-4 years they will still have great QBs? People talk about the schedules and how easy they are, but when they scheduled the game, the team was good. I think it's a great idea, having the SEC and Big 12 play each other. Texas plays Arkansas and I think that might be it.
Mel Kiper (1:30 PM)
Look at next year, if Bradford goes to the NFL, Harrell is a senior...you can't expect it to be this good 3-4 years down the road.
It was widely thought that Texas' gauntlet of 4 teams was too tough, which proved to be true. How about the run that Tech is on now? Can they do it?
Mel Kiper (1:33 PM)
Well, Texas Tech's run began at Kansas, OK State, OK and Texas. But Texas Tech had Texas at home, OK State at home and OK after a week off. Texas had its games in successive weeks. From a scheduling standpoint, I don't see Tech beating Oklahoma, even with a week off. But that's why they play the games. Tech scares everybody. But they ahve some guys that can play. You didn't have that before. They were a system team. They have players on both sides of the ball that could be elite players. Now they're given credit for their talent.
Can Graham Harrell become a franchise quarterback?
Mel Kiper (1:34 PM)
No, he's not that type of QB. He's a franchise QB at TT, but he's not going to be in the NFL. He'll have a chance to prove what no other QB at TT has done -- prove they can play in the NFL. He does have some skills that will translate into the NFL, but he's not a QB that will mean first or second round attention. He's the best we've seen TT have.
John (St. Louis, MO)
Mel, Look into your crystal ball and tell me if you see Terrelle Pryor turning into a top 10 pick at QB.
Mel Kiper (1:36 PM)
Pryor is still too young to determine that. He's got a little bit of Vince Young in him. Young right now is going through a tough time with the Titans. If Vince Young were a star in the NFL, and doesn't return to being a star in the NFL, it will be a negative for Pryor. If Young re-establishes himself as a starter next year, where his career is when Pryor comes out, it will be how he's viewed.
Will J (Portland, OR)
I'm glad to see you being so adamentally opposed to the BCS, I wish some of your cohorts would do the same. No one has still given me any reasonable or rational explanation as to why a playoff system isn't good.
Mel Kiper (1:39 PM)
no, there's no reason why you can't. I think it's a lot of stubborn people that don't want to change the system. You could still have the bowl games. They don't have any significance now, so how could a playoff negatively impact them. Have you ever cared about a consolation game? Everyone only cares about the one game. Nobody cares about the BCS games. Some of the teams care, some don't. Is anybody disappointed in being in the NFL playoffs? No. They have a shot. No one goes into the college basketball tournament disappointed. Do people go into the bowl games disappointed? Yes. Some don't even want to be there. They try to get you to believe that every week in the college football season is a playoff. That means a team that plays in September has to be as good as they are in December. What separated Texas from TT on Saturday? One play. If that goes the other way, they're still No. 1 right now. But nope, they get moved down.
Mel Kiper (1:41 PM)
I've been screaming about this for years and I get tired of screaming about it. I can't scream about it any louder. There are too many college football apologists out there. They act like nothing college football can do is wrong. If you stop being an apologist for a minute and look at it and realize you have a major problem. The worst postseason by far of major sports.
What direction do the Bears go with their draft this spring? QB?WR?OL?
Mel Kiper (1:43 PM)
Certainly you look at this offense and it's better than anyone imagined. Orton's out and Grossman is back in there. They got a good one in Forte. They had an injury with Chris Williams. This defense is not playing to the level that it did. This defense needs to be fortified as well. That's an area where you can balance it out. You can't sleep on the defense. They've tried to address some positions.
Trey (Tuscaloosa, AL)
Whats the upside to Terrance Cody's draft stock, meaning, how high can a nose tackle actually go, since he'd only fit a few teams defenses.
Mel Kiper (1:45 PM)
First of all, he's a DT. He's a huge plugger. Ted Washington, how valuable was he? Kris Jenkins, how is he doing with the Jets? Rodgers, what an impact he's made for the Browns. Look throughout the NFL. Albert Haynesworth. Whether it's the big guys or the penetrators have become the key guys on the defense. To me, Terrance Cody has tremendous value to a defense. Just look at the guys I mentioned. Even though he's a juco kid and has the one year, but he'll be helpful to a defense.
Kyle M (Knoxville, TN)
Mr. Kiper, who makes your short list for Tennessee's head coaching position?
Mel Kiper (1:48 PM)
I don't know about names, but to me, it's an elite job. There are storied programs, historic programs. Let's give Fulmer credit, he won a national championship. Neeland Stadium and how many great teams played there. All the great players. It has always been a group of talented players there. This last recruiting class was not highly regarded, that was kind of a red flag. Steve Spurrier had a better recruiting class at SC, Huston Nutt and Ole Miss too. This year was not a highly regarded recruiting class. For the boosters and fans down there, maybe that was a red flag. But it is an elite job.
Jeff (Brooklyn, OH)
Is Taylor Mays comparable skills-wise to Sean Taylor?
Mel Kiper (1:49 PM)
He's a talented kid. Big physically. He has a lot of ability. Kevin Ellison was doing a good job as the other safety, but he just got hurt. Mays is a hard nosed safety. Almost LB size with safety skills. He's only a junior.
Mel Kiper (1:49 PM)
Workouts for him will be important for him. When he goes through all the drills, safeties have to cover now.
Does CJ Spiller enter the draft early or stay at Clemson. Where do you see him and James Davis going in the draft.
Mel Kiper (1:51 PM)
With the RB situation the way it is this year, there are some underclassmen that could come out that are more highly rated that Spiller. If McCoy, Wells, Moreno come out those are three that are better. The senior class, the top senior is Javon Ringer, James Davis is in that mix. This year has not gone Clemson's way, the QB issues, the coach change, nothing has gone right. For Spiller, I think he would be better served going back to Clemson. I would advise him to go back.
Scott (Simpsonville SC)
Your thoughts on South Carolina and the last three games of the season. They have a "stout" defense that possibly could carry them to wins in their last 3. Do you see this as a possibly and a good bowl?
Mel Kiper (1:54 PM)
They do. They're getting good play from the guys up front. The back 7, Brinkley, Norwood, Cook, hard hitting safety, cover corner...real good components. It's homecoming against Arkansas, who's at 4-5 and they have a chance at a bowl. That's going to be an interesting game. The one thing about Arkansas, Casey Dick had a big game throwing the ball. Michael Smith has had a great year running the ball. You have a red hot QB and a RB against a very stout defense. I'd favor SC. If they win, they go 7-3, they'll lose to Florida and beat Clemson for an 8-4 season.
Mel Kiper (1:54 PM)
That's better than last season where they went 6-6 with no bowl game.
Steve (Syracuse, NY)
Is Curtis Brinkley the next great back to come out of Syracuse?
Mel Kiper (1:57 PM)
He's done a good job. He had a nice game last week. It seems like Syracuse can only beat Louisville. IF they could play them every week, they'd be 12-0. Syracuse was 2-10 last year and they beat Louisville. This year they're 2-6 with another win over Louisville. This week they play at Rutgers. When you look at Brinkley, give him credit, he's done a good job. He has had some good games. He's only about 5-9, 205, and against Rutgers last year, he had 16 carries for 98 yards. In 2006, he had 15 for 108. He's had some good games.
les zachary louisiana
what do you think LSU s chances of beatin alabama sat in baton rouge?
Mel Kiper (2:00 PM)
I like it a lot more if it's at night. I don't know why they do it, I think since 1960, they're 2-3 games under .500 in day games. The shame of it that it's not being played at night. I'm not a big fan of Saturday night football, I like the afternoon, but there are select venues with LSU being head and shoulders above everybody, where night games should be mandatory. In the day time, they're just an ordinary team. If you play a game at home, don't you want to maximize your advantage? They are tremendously different in the night. I like LSU at night, I don't know about the afternoon. I said weeks ago that Alabama are overrated, I still do. But LSU has not played well either. If this were at night, I would pick LSU, but in the day time, I'm not sure.
Mel Kiper (2:00 PM)
The Big 12 dominates the landscape this week. LSU-Alabama. Every week we have the Big 12 game and the one big SEC game. We'll be back again next week to do it all over again.