Chat with Edward Aschoff
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, ESPN.com's SEC blogger Edward Aschoff will stop by to talk some college football.
Aschoff joined ESPN.com in 2011 after spending four years covering the University of Florida for The Gainesville Sun. He grew up in Oxford, Miss., before attending UF, graduating with a B.S. in journalism.
Send your questions now and join Aschoff Monday at noon ET!
Edward Aschoff (12:03 PM)
Greetings, everyone! We are finally here. College football starts in only a couple of days. I hope you're all ready because I know that I am. Let's get started.
Can the Razorbacks defense break through this year and be the deciding factor we need to finally claim our SEC title.
Edward Aschoff (12:06 PM)
If Arkansas is going to make a serious push in the SEC West that defense has to be better. It was pushed around by LSU and Alabama last year -- the Hogs' only losses. Depth was a major issue and there are still depth issues at linebacker. The defensive line will be key with DD Jones, Byron Jones and Robert Thomas inside. But can Trey Flowers step up, especially with Tank Wright moving to linebacker? Tevin Mitchel could be an absolute stud at CB, so there is talent here, but Paul Haynes has to make this group more consistent, tougher and more aggressive.
Dash can we get this season started already! Can you redeem yourself over Low this season? I see the Razorbacks going 11-1 regular season with only loss coming from Alabama. Do you think our defense is underated. I believe they are the key to making this season count and finally breaking through.
Edward Aschoff (12:06 PM)
I've been training all summer to make a strong run in the picks. Chris' days of dominance are over.
How do you think Cordarrelle Patterson will fare in replacing Da'Rick for the Vols?
Edward Aschoff (12:08 PM)
He has all the talent to be very good, but he now has to learn that playbook on the fly. And he has to be pretty good at learning it. Having Hunter alongside him will help, but we still don't know if he truly is 100 percent. I think you'll see some struggles early from both as they get used to things, but having a talent like Tyler Bray throwing the ball will help. If Patterson adapts well he could be one of the league's top deep threats.
Chase (Red Stick, LA)
There has been some talk on ESPN's CFB shows (Gameday, CFBLive, etc.) that their predictions will be that no team from SEC will be in NCG this year.."This is the year!" With last year having 2 SEC teams in NCG...Kirk and the guys are going the opposite way? Agree or Disagree?
Edward Aschoff (12:09 PM)
I still think LSU is the best team in the country, while Alabama will be right up there this fall. Arkansas, Georgia and South Carolina can all push for a BCS run. I don't think an SEC team will get shut out of the national championship. Not with the talent coming back at the top.
I see South Carolina winning the east with a tie breaker. They will have 2 losses as well as UGA and Mizzou, but having beat both those teams they get the division. Would this be to bold of a prediction to say Mizzou ties for the division?
Edward Aschoff (12:11 PM)
I think Missouri brings back enough talent to compete in the East, yes. But I am just not sold on the lack of size. I know coaches and players aren't worried but come mid-October things might be different. You live and die by your lines more in this league. I just don't know if this team can hold up for an entire season. Now, I picked South Carolina to win the East, so I'm with you there. A tie-breaker with UGA won't surprise me. One with Mizzou would.
Does Wilson have enough options in his recieving corp to put up dominant numbers like last year. How much pressure will having a healthy Davis in the backfield take off of Wilson and the recievers?
Edward Aschoff (12:13 PM)
I think so. Cobi Hamilton could be the league's best receiver this fall and the coaches like what Julian Horton, Keante Minor and Javontee Herndon can do. Also, tight end Chris Gragg might be the SEC's top tight end. Like you said, having Davis back will help a ton because he'll help take a lot of pressure off of that passing game. I think he has a big year ... again.
Eric The Red (Norway)
Will Denico Autry give opposing teams OL fits?
Edward Aschoff (12:14 PM)
The coaches seem to think so. They've called him a freak since he got on campus and he has the ability to change games like Fletcher Cox, even though he's on the end. He could be a solid pass-rusher and can gobble up the run.
Chase (Red Stick, LA)
How do you think Jalen Collins and Jalen Mills will fill in for LSU this year?
Edward Aschoff (12:16 PM)
I think it will be by committee for most of the start. It sounds like Mills has a bit of the advantage to start at corner, while Collins will play the nickel spot. Whatever helps the team the most and makes those freshmen the most comfortable is what LSU wants.
Edward Aschoff (12:17 PM)
One of my predictions was that he would lead Alabama in all-purpose yards and I think he's that good to do it. He's sharp and very talented. He was all over the place in the spring game and I think Nick Saban will try to use him at both RB and out of the backfield in the passing game. Lacy gets hurt a lot, so that will mean Yeldon has to be prepared to play a lot.
jeff (asheville, nc)
Georgia spotted South Carolina 3 touchdowns last year and only lost by 3 points. With both teams returning a similar amount of talent why do you feel SC will beat Georgia again this year? I doubt Ga will spot them 3 td's again!
Edward Aschoff (12:19 PM)
I like South Carolina at home and this team is upset about last year. The Gamecocks swept the East and still watched Georgia play in Atlanta. It still stings. Plus, I think South Carolina's defense will try to rattle that offensive line as much as it can.
Darth Tripous (hyperspace)
Why is there never any love for South Carolina with y'all?
Edward Aschoff (12:19 PM)
I picked South Carolina to win the East ... soooooooooo
Casey (Kandahar, Afghanistan)
What do you think CMR is waiting on in regards to announcing the status of Rambo and Ogletree? I mean the media says they're suspended but Richt himself hasn't said anything? Any thoughts?
Edward Aschoff (12:20 PM)
I'm not sure. This spring it was reported that they would indeed be suspended, but the lengths were unknown. Maybe he wont announce anything. He'll just sit them.
Who has the best Oline/RB stable combo in the SEC?
Edward Aschoff (12:21 PM)
Man that's tough. I think Alabama has the best line, but I'll take LSU's running backs. Hard to really give someone the edge ...
Joseph (Arlington, WA)
If Les Miles has to go to the bench for a backup QB, will it be Rivers or Bolden?
Edward Aschoff (12:22 PM)
I'd go with Bolden. He has D1 experience and has done well in practices so far.
NC State is not an easy opener for UT. Amerson could match up with Hunter when healthy and a loss there would be Betty bar the door for Dooley.
Edward Aschoff (12:24 PM)
It's going to be tough. Plus, NC State's offense isn't too bad, either. I think it's a big test all around for the Vols. You'll see some awkward moments on both sides for the Vols as they shake some rust off and get more comfortable with each other. Double-teaming Hunter will be easier now until Patterson gets comfy.
Kyle (Houston, TX)
Are the Aggies going to make a bowl game this year? Six wins doesn't seem all that unreachable...
Edward Aschoff (12:26 PM)
I think it will be tough, but if the Aggies beat Florida early that will definitely help those bowl chances. If not, it might end them. Four of their West games are on the road. Yuck. A&M has to sweep its out-of-conference schedule, which I think it will. Getting wins on the road at Ole Miss and Auburn will be huge.
freakinpaullee (eye of the tiger)
Dash, if Mettenberger is as good as everyone says he is, could be end up being the best QB in the SEC?
Edward Aschoff (12:27 PM)
He has the talent to compete for that title, yes. But I don't think he'll have the numbers Tyler Wilson and Tyler Bray have. Aaron Murray can sling it around too.
Is there any all conference team that can beat a Bama/LSU All star team?
Edward Aschoff (12:28 PM)
Not likely :) Don't let the other bloggers see that ...
Auburn vs. Clemson. Which Tigers win?
Edward Aschoff (12:28 PM)
The ones in orange ... come on you know I don't reveal my picks until Thursday! I don't want Chris cheating ... again
atl-olemiss-terrell aka lexington steele (atlanta airport)
The Falcons' new retractable roof dome will be finish in 2017, can that be the year Ole Miss gets to ATL and rep. The west in the SEC Ch game?
Edward Aschoff (12:29 PM)
I like to say I can predict most of the future, but even this one is too far away for me. I need to see recruiting classes, discipline changing, wins happening. WAAAAAAY too early.
Jeffrey Scott (New York)
Will Georgia eventually have to play Arky/Bama/LSU or will they continue to have cupcake schedules forever??
Edward Aschoff (12:29 PM)
I predict that Georgia will have to play at least two of those teams next year. Something just tells me it's going to happen ...
Do you think Missouri and Texas A&M will be better equiped to handle their moves to the SEC than other schools (Colorado, Nebraska) who recently switch BCS conferences?
Edward Aschoff (12:30 PM)
I think Mizzou will this year, but might struggle when it comes to recruiting. I think this is a great move for A&M because the Aggies will be able to recruit Texas and more of the southeast than Missouri. However, a big first year for the Tigers will definitely help them in states like Florida and Georgia. A
Tville (A Barn Near You)
Hey Dash, I don't like your predictions for Auburn this year, I just don't see why you can place them so low, can you explain your reasoning? Thank you sir!
Edward Aschoff (12:32 PM)
I'm not and cold with Auburn. I had them as my sleeper this spring, but I'm backing off it a little bit the more I look at the schedule. And the offensive line and secondary just scare me. I think this team is a year away from really competing in the West. Frazier could be a real gamer in this league. Patience is needed on the Plains.
Ed How do you figure that MS. St. is higher in the power rankings than auburn is just outrageous. They can't even beat another sec team not named Ole Miss
Edward Aschoff (12:33 PM)
I think they will this year. I'd love to reveal my picks, but I just can't right now. I think Mississippi State has the year we thought it would have last year. Potentially nasty D. The offense does make me nervous, but the Dawgs will be able to run the ball.
Dash! How can our depleted defense keep up with LSU and Arkansas this year. We lost too much talent last year to the draft!
Edward Aschoff (12:34 PM)
Bama's defense will have some hiccups here and there. That's just natural considering the talent it lost, but I still think it will be one of the best in the SEC. Playing Arkansas early could be challenging. That offense knows what it's doing, while Bama's D will have to grow up pretty fast. Fun times ahead.
Chris Low (My Desk)
Dash, my good buddy, How dare you say I cheat on my predictions, you are going down this year on pick ems!!!
Edward Aschoff (12:35 PM)
You know the truth. Soon, it'll come out ...
Ed, I'm predicting the Wildcats run the table in the East defying all odds and ending up in the Championship Game. Thoughts?
Edward Aschoff (12:36 PM)
My. Goodness. Pretty high hopes there. Kentucky could have a rough year this fall. That defense lost so much and that line is an injury away from being in real trouble. Maxwell Smith has a lot of potential though. Must sweep nonconference schedule in order to make a bowl.
Joseph (Arlington, WA)
South Carolina seems set for a special season. Yet, they have been in this position before, only to have fallen short. Will the Gamecocks stumble in 2012 and where?
Edward Aschoff (12:38 PM)
Back-to-back road games against LSU and Florida are going to be tough. But having Georgia, Tennessee and Arkansas all at home is huge. I think this team is on a mission and if Lattimore stays healthy, watch out.
How does AJ McCarron stack up against the other QB's in the SEC?
Edward Aschoff (12:39 PM)
I think he has all the skill to be elite. He does press a lot though and that has to stop. Nick Saban wants to throw the ball down field more but he can't do that if McCarron tries to make every single play ever single time he touches the ball. He got in trouble doing that last year. He has the weapons to help him have a big year and he'll have good backs to hand off to. I think he has a big year.
Les Miles (Baton Rouge )
Hey Ed we here in Tiger Nation love the work you guys do on the blog. I just want to thank the faith you have in our team even after the dismissal of Tyrann. Thank you and Geaux Tigers. I wnat you in my next commercial.
Edward Aschoff (12:40 PM)
It would be an honor. Our comedic genius would mesh well together.
Bryan (Springdale, AR)
Is there a reason you left Brandon Mitchell off the list of WR's at Arkansas? Some are saying he is the no. 2 option behind Cobi Hamilton, but you know how the locals are ?
Edward Aschoff (12:41 PM)
No reason. Just typing quickly. I think he could be a big player in this offense. He could line up a few different places and he can still throw the ball. I'm excited to see him in the offense this fall.
Keenan (Atlanta, GA)
Which conference newcomer at WR will make the biggest impact to his new team, Cordarelle Patterson or Shaq Roland?
Edward Aschoff (12:42 PM)
OK so Patterson might have more yards, but I think Roland is more valuable. He's probably the most talented receiver South Carolina has and that team needs him to step up. I wouldn't be surprised if he led South Carolina in receiving yards this fall.
taylor (raleigh nc)
does vandy prove to be a tough game for sc
Edward Aschoff (12:43 PM)
I think so. That team is pretty confidence. The offense could give South Carolina's defense some issues here and there. The offense line does scare me as far as depth. Now the defense still has some questions. A lot of talent is gone. I want to see this team stop the run better and Lattimore will be playing like a man on a mission, especially in the first game.
Chris (Statesboro, GA)
Why does it seem u have a dislike for UGA, I do not believe I have ever heard u say one positive thing about the DAWGS?
Edward Aschoff (12:44 PM)
How about when I said this team is stacked on both sides? Or Aaron Murray being a possible Heisman candidate? Or calling Jarvis Jones one of the best players in the country? Yep, hate, hate, hate!
who will have a better year McKale McKay at Arkansas or DGB at Missouri?
Edward Aschoff (12:45 PM)
DGB. I think he comes in and is one of James Franklin's top targets. He's done very well in practice and he's big, strong, fast and will line up inside and out. I think he has a big first year.
Will Franklin's mobile ability change the way defenses play against them enough to give a beat up line a chance against the SEC? and what are the chances for a georgia upset at Mizzou?
Edward Aschoff (12:48 PM)
He told me he doesn't want to run as much because he doesn't want to get hit as much. He suffered like nine injuries last year. He wants to throw the ball more and be more of a pocket passer. Now I think he'll still have to run a bunch because the offense calls for it, but he wants to avoid those big defenders as much as possible. If those key defensive starters are out for Georgia, you have to think Missouri has a better chance. But this game is at home in front of what should be an amazing crowd. I'll go with ....
the Gators def is going to be great, what do you see if the off. get on track could they be a surprize in the sec.
Edward Aschoff (12:49 PM)
I think the D will be very good and will have less bend than it had last year. Especially up front. And that secondary should be pretty good. Now, the offense just has so many questions. OLine, QB and WR are issues to me. I think Mike Gillislee has a pretty solid year at RB and that line has to be better right? But who is going to catch the ball? If the offense comes together this team will definitely fight for the East.
Pachy (SEC Blog)
Three games you won't miss this year no matter what.
Edward Aschoff (12:50 PM)
Bama-Michigan, Bama-Arkansas, Bama-LSU
First of all I think AJ McCarron has great potential, but who would you pick,AJ McCarron or Matt Barkley?
Edward Aschoff (12:50 PM)
Dang, that's tough. You know I'll conform with everyone else and go with Barkley. He's a little more proven and could be the top pick in the draft. But I would be happy with either.
Joseph (Arlington, WA)
Following Eddy Lacey last year and through this year's fall practice, he seems to be injury prone, is he the replacement for Richardson that the Tide need? Or, is Bama's O-line physical enough to make life easy for any of it's RBs?
Edward Aschoff (12:52 PM)
Bama's line is that good and I think this team is going to use multiple backs regardless. Yeldon could eat into Lacy's carries because of talent alone. Expect at least four guys to carry the rock for the Tide this fall.
Barack Obama (White House)
The SEC has visited me every year I have been here. Do you think it will happen again this year?
Edward Aschoff (12:53 PM)
A true celebrity in the house! Welcome, sir! I hope you're a fan of gumbo and have a purple tie ...
Is Nov 3 the biggest regular season night for CFB ever? Oregon USC and Bama LSU. 4 top 5 teams 1 night sounds very post seasonish
Edward Aschoff (12:54 PM)
It's the quarterfinals for the national championship really. Winners head to conference championships (though loser out west could end up going as well).
Kevin (Reno, NV)
Are the Trojans the team to end the SEC's "Reign of Dominance" over CFB? Or will there lack of depth due to scholarship reductions and attrition prove to be there undoing?
Edward Aschoff (12:55 PM)
I think the depth is an issue and I just don't think that defense is "elite" especially up front. If an SEC team makes it to the big game it will have a stout line and I just don't know if USC would have a ton of success against it.
Hog Tied (Pig Pen)
Why do you hate the hogs? We were national title contenders until Bobby P. was dismissed? We still have all our players and the same assistants? What gives?
Edward Aschoff (12:57 PM)
I've said since the spring that I like everything about this team, but I question the defense. And Petrino is gone. Your head coach is gone. Can John L. Smith command the same sort of respect he did? Can he motivate like Petrino? What happens when adversity hits? Can he be the man? No one knows yet.
Ed, I'm a huge Gator fan... But with that being said, I've played all the scenarios out in my head, and I can't see them winning more than 9 games w/ losses coming from LSU, Georgia, and FSU... What's your honest take on their season?
Edward Aschoff (12:59 PM)
This team is an enigma because of the offense. The defense could be elite, but who knows what the offense will do. This team could start 2-2 or 4-0. If it's going to get to nine wins it has to at least split South Carolina and Georgia and Texas A&M and Tennessee.
Can my hogs ever beat Bama and ARky in the same year? I'm scared with the talent we will lose this year that its now or never.
Edward Aschoff (1:00 PM)
I assume you mean LSU. The fact that both are at home is huge. But it's still going to be tough, regardless. The offense might have the advantage against Bama early, while that LSU game could be an absolute slugfest.
Ed,Would a title game without an SEC team be taken seriously? I understand people hate the fact that the SEC dominates... but don't they want to beat the SEC on the field?
Edward Aschoff (1:01 PM)
Ha, of course it would. There is some obvious SEC fatigue, but it's the national championship. Football has been played longer than the last six years and people survived. Hey, look at that Texas-USC game. Pretty good.
Edward Aschoff (1:02 PM)
OK, guys. I'm out. Great chatting with you all again. Talk to you all soon and smile, college football is here!