November 30, 2012

Wahooze Pix - Week Fourteen

Last Week
Mike: 8 (out of 11)
Pierce: 8
Garrett: 8
Kendall: 5

Standings
Pierce - 71

Mike - 70
Guests - 68
Kendall - 64

Still darn close (except for Kendall) as we get into championship games and bowls. This week features most of the championship games. [Ed note: picks were made before last night's "Big East" matchup] There's plenty of games this week and even moreso bowls, so anything could happen.

This week's guest is a longtime friend of Wahooze, Doug. Let's get to it!


FSU (-14) v GT 
Noles: Everyone.
Al Groh Sucks: No one.

Kendall: GT in the championship game is a total embarrassment.

Mike: It sounds like GT would have been better off just to have missed this game. The ACC will be lucky to pull a 1.0 on the rating.

Pierce: FSU by a million

Doug: Who really cares though... the real losers are us fans. Any
championship where one division winner in reality is in third place is
a joke.

Nebraska (-2.5) v Wisconsin
Huskers: Everyone.
Badgers: No one.

Kendall: Nebraska has had a really quiet 10-win season.

Mike: Too busy laughing about Ohio State to actually watch this game.

Pierce: Wisconsin is mediocre. I don't see this being that close. 

Doug: Nebraska - See comment on ACC. they should have had Nebraska play Florida State.

Bama (-7.5) v UGA
Tide: Pierce
Dawgs: Kendall, Mike, Doug

Kendall: Go Dawgs.  I don't think I can handle seeing another Bama championship.

Mike: I think Ugga can pull this off.

Pierce: Not betting against Nick Saban, that's for sure. Though it could be much too high of a spread.

Doug: Georgia - I think Georgia wins outright or keeps it within a touchdown.


Stanford (-9) v UCLA
Cardinal: Kendall, Pierce, Doug
Bruins: Mike

Kendall: One of these teams is really good.  The other?  Snacked on a bunch of Pac-12 cupcakes.

Mike: Gotta think this will be closer than the last time.

Pierce: Stanford is just this good.

Doug: Is it just me or do, outside of SEC, all these championship
games suck?

Texas @ KSU (-12.5) 
Longhorns: Kendall, Mike
EMAW: Pierce, Doug

Kendall: Here comes the upset.  Book it.

Mike: Texas will keep this one close.

Pierce: Spread is so high, but Texas is that bad. 

Doug: I actually thought this would be the game KSU would need to
worry about knocking them off. Texas seems to have folded the tents
though to me.

Louisville @ Rutgers (-3) 
Cardinals: Kendall, Mike, Pierce
New Jersey: Doug

Kendall: It's ACC vs. Big 10 for the Big East championship.

Mike: Welcome to the big boys Louisville. Go out with a bang.

Pierce: Chirp chirp?

Doug: now that they have joined the ACC, they can commence being
terrible at football.

Oklahoma (-6.5) @ TCU 
Sooners: Kendall, Pierce, Doug
Frogs: Mike

Kendall: So sick of the Big XII.  Actually... so sick of college football right now.  Screw our team.

Mike: One last BIG XII win for Gary Patterson.

Pierce: Sooners should roll.

Doug: I'll go with Oklahoma they still have an outside shot at BCS game

Welp, there you have. Stay tuned to Wahooze for bowl game picks, and to see if UVA get's left out of the major conference game of musical chairs. 

November 28, 2012

Trading Maryland for Louisville

First things first, let's not sound like idiots here.  It's not Lew-EEE-ville.  It's LEW-uh-vul.  (Also, pet peeve on this one...  It's not New Or-LEENS.  It's New OR-lins.  C'mon people.)

Okay, with the important stuff out of the way, applesauce to the ACC power brokers for needing just over a week (with Thanksgiving thrown in there) to move fast and decisively to replace Maryland with Louisville.

I know this feels like we're just further annexing the Big East into the ACC, but I think it's important to note that Louisville has been in the Big East for only seven years, as they joined that conference in 2005.  So for a lot of us ACC fans over the age of 30, Louisville doesn't feel like just another Big East turd to float in the ACC punch bowl.  Okay, maybe it's an Independent / Missouri Valley / Conference USA turd, but I've long believed that Louisville belonged in a true power conference.  It's not a great school, but it's improving, and it delivers good football tradition and future potential housed in a 55K-seat stadium that can easily be expanded to 80K.  And Louisville Basketball... well, let's just say they are a top-10 program in terms of the Blueblood Rankings.  (Maryland: #17)  And - oh wow - Rick Pitino is now an ACC coach.  Wow.

This bird has teeth.


We'll have more on this soon, but ultimately I think we're losing a little bit in terms of media footprint as we trade Maryland for Louisville, but we're gaining a slight uptick in basketball and a major uptick in football.  The overall athletic department of Louisville seems to have more momentum than Maryland, since, you know, they haven't been operating in the red and cancelling several athletic programs.  But Louisville doesn't have lacrosse.  :sadface:  Virginia lost its division crossover rival when Maryland bolted, so I wonder if Louisville will just slide into that spot?




Here's how the Cardinals performed most recently in each of the varsity sports I actually give a crap about...

FOOTBALL -- Currently 9-2 (4-2 Big East) and playing Rutgers on Thursday night for the Big East championship.  Ranked #23 in the USA Today poll, and just outside the top-25 in the other polls.  They look like a good bet for the BCS as the Big East champs.

BASKETBALL -- Currently 5-1 overall and ranked #5.  Last year they went 30-10, advanced to the Final Four as a 4-seed, where they lost to eventual nation champion Kentucky.

BASEBALL -- Went 41-22 (18-9 Big East) and earned a 3-seed for the NCAA tournament (failed to advance from Tucson Regional.)

LACROSSE -- No program.  :sadface:

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL -- Currently 7-0 overall and ranked #7.  Last year they went 22-9 and earned a 7-seed.  They lost to Maryland in the second round.  Ugh.


This is a solid athletic program we're adding to the mix, folks.  I'm excited.

Screw you, Maryland.  Welcome aboard, Louisville!


November 27, 2012

Scapegoating: The Running Game

Our shitty running game seems to be the thing that Mike London is scapegoating as we trundle off into the offseason abyss.



Check it out:
With season over, Virginia Coach Mike London laments run game struggles


[Running Backs Coach] Mike Faragalli is already out, and rumors are thick that [Offensive Line Coach] Scott Wachenheim is soon to follow.  I'm looking to see a hire geared more toward "Running Game Coordinator," like a lot of schools are doing these days.  Makes sense.  Our running game did suck this season, and I'm sure London wants running the football to be the overriding theme of the offense.

Of course, I could also stand to see a little scapegoating on special teams.  Dex needs to be relieved of his duties, like, yesterday.  Really, it needed to happen midseason.  I wonder if London has the gumption or chops to step in as the Special Teams Coordinator ala Frank Beamer during the rise of Beamerball?

Meanwhile, it appears likely that Marques "Biscuit" Hagans will be offered a full-time spot on the staff, after he served as the graduate assistant de facto Wide Receivers Coach.  I'm not sure I'm super-psyched about another ex-player and UVA great (much more difficult to fire if/when you need to) taking over a paid position, especially on offense, and especially given Biscuit's lack of experience as a coach.  Yikes.

Well, we wanted changes.  Here they come.  Anything beats the status quo, I suppose.



November 26, 2012

Self-Scouting Mike London

I think there are four qualities that make a good head football coach at the college level.  Very few coaches possess ALL of these qualities, other than maybe Nick Saban.

Anyway, these are the qualities I think are important, along with my grades on Mike London in each of the categories.  Let's do it.


Nick Saban: the ultimate college football CEO.

President and CEO
Does the coach improve everything within the program, from top to bottom?  Does he demand excellence?  Does he hold his players and staff accountable for their successes and/or failures?  Does he embrace heightened expectations?  Is he a leader?  Does he command respect?  Does he foster an atmosphere of collaboration among his staff?  Is he capable of attracting and hiring the right assistants?  Is he able to delegate successfully?  Does he get out of his assistants' way and let them coach, but still step in when needed?  Is he tough enough to let staff members go when they aren't performing to baseline expectations?  Is he a strong disciplinarian?  Is he properly connected to academics?  Does he provide a strong face of the program?

Mike London's Grade: C-minus
I think London is clearly in over his head at times in the management arena.  The question is, will he learn to swim or will he drown?  Will he rise to the challenge or will it eat him up?  His relative inexperience can be blamed for a lot of his shortcomings, and he has shown some nice potential with some of this stuff.  He's good at making believers of people, but there are times you really have to wonder about what's happening behind the scenes.  Is it real, or is he just a con artist?  His willingness and ability to properly shake up the coaching staff this offseason will be quite telling.  We need him to take full ownership of the product on the field, and he hasn't really done that yet.



Chip Kelly sets the gold standard for Xs and Os.
Xs and Os
Is the coach knowledgeable about football?  Is he aware of coaching trends?  Does he build cohesive and effective systems?  Can he put together effective gameplans?  Does he make smart in-game adjustments?  Does he properly develop talent?  Does he make good in-game decisions?  Is he a strong decision-maker who operates with conviction and possesses thick skin?  Does he have applicable experience as a head coach?  Is he flexible and open to new ideas and techniques?  Does he properly manage the roster and scholarship numbers?  Is he creative with the scheme?  Does he elevate the team into something greater than the sum of its parts?  Can he consistently coach 'em up?

Mike London's Grade: F
I'm still waiting for a real head coach to show up.  As it is, London seems like a rah-rah position coach miscast as the head honcho.  I feel like Jim Reid's experience level has propped up a bad - borderline negligent - performance from London in the Xs and Os area.  The debacle against Virginia Tech is the latest testament to his extreme shortcomings.  I just fear he lacks the requisite nuts and bolts of successful head coaching.


Pete Carroll did a lot of winning at USC as a rah-rah guy.
Warm Fuzzies
Is the coach a great motivator?  Does the coach clearly love and care for the kids on the team?  Does he show outward love for the town / area / region / state and clear pride for the school?  Does he revere the game of football?  Is he considered approachable and accessible?  Is he enthusiastic for his job, and show passion and heart in chasing greatness?  Does the coach inspire and instill belief in the program?  Is he good with community relations?  Does he inspire trust?  Does he maintain a consistently positive winning attitude?  Do his players "lay it on the line" for him?

Mike London's Grade: A
This is London's biggest strength as a head coach.  But unfortunately, just being a "players coach" is never enough, unless it is accompanied by at least C+ level management and Xs and Os ability.  The rah-rah stuff has a short shelf life if it is not followed up with results on the field.  When he's winning, you love the energy on the sideline.  When he's losing, you are just annoyed by it, and it comes off as frenetic and desperate.  So while the warm fuzzies is definitely an asset, it's not enough to buoy shaky performances elsewhere.


He's a total slimeball, but Urban Meyer wins championships
thanks to his recruiting chops.
Recruiting
Is the coach good at assessing talent?  Does he excel at making personal connections with recruits and their families?  Can he seal the deal with recruits?  Can he sell the program to recruits and reel in talent that is better than what is typically attracted to the school?  Is he able to expand his recruiting territory?  Does he build and maintain solid relationships with high school coaches?  Does he consistently deliver highly-ranked recruiting classes?

Mike London's Grade: B
Mike London is a good recruiter, but he needs to start reeling in more elite-level talent.  3-star kids are great, and they'll form the bedrock of the program, but we need more and more 4- and 5-star guys to overcome the Xs and Os deficit.  These top-25 classes need to become top-15 classes in order for Virginia to become an important team.


Overall, I think we have a C-minus head coach who is severely lacking in one of the key areas.  He can overcome that with better recruiting and hiring the right assistants.  His ultimate success or failure will boil down to that "President and CEO" area.  If he develops as a program manager, he'll find enough success to coach here for a long time.  If not... well...  We'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

Good luck, coach.  We're still behind you... for now.


November 25, 2012

REALIGNMAGEDDON -- UVA and UNC to the B1G?



The rumors are flying fast and furious right now: Virginia and North Carolina to the Big Ten.  It's probably always been the B1G's endgame, and would be accompanied by Virginia Tech and NC State heading to the SEC, and Florida State, Clemson, Georgia Tech, Miami, Louisville, and Notre Dame heading to the Big XII.  That would leave Duke, Wake Forest, Boston College, Pittsburgh, and Syracuse adrift without a conference home, as the era of the SUPERCONFERENCES dawns on college athletics.

Not long after the ACC crumbles and the three 16-team conferences are formed, the Pac-12 would look to move toward becoming the Pac-16 (adding San Diego State, Boise State, BYU, and one other Mountain West / WAC lottery winner).  Those four 16-team conferences, 64 schools in total, would then look to secede from the NCAA and form their own playoffs.  It's been the doomsday prediction that a lot of realignmageddon rumor-mongers have been making for years now, and it seems more possible now than it ever has before.

So how about it, UVA fans?  Are we ready to join the B1G?

Here would be our new conference-mates:
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Maryland
Michigan
Michigan State
Minnesota
Nebraska
North Carolina
Northwestern
Ohio State
Penn State
Purdue
Rutgers
Wisconsin

We'd be part of a four-team division that included UNC, UMD (ugh), and Rutgers.

We'd be trading our history and tradition in the ACC for an additional $7-$9 million per season in television revenue, not to mention the major research windfall associated with joining the Big Ten's AAU consortium.  It's hard to turn down that kind of ching.  It's a big deal.  Sentiment and nostalgia will never trump money.  Ever.

Not pictured: Terrapin, Scarlet Knight... Tarheel, and Cavalier?

So how about it, everyone?  Are we ready to embrace this rumor and start finding reasons to be happy about potentially joining the B1G?


November 24, 2012

List of Demands

*sigh*

I'd say something about the blatantly obvious yet un-called pass interference / defensive holding against Exum on the late Rocco INT, but we were playing to lose at that point anyway.  Saving the timeouts to ice the kicker?  Laughable.  That was Mickey Mouse bullshit, and that's on Mike London.  And the dirty-ass cut block that took down Chris Brathwaite?  Par for the course with the Hokies.  They are common scum, no way around it.  But they are scum that have our number, to the point where we watch the air wheeze out of the balloon at the end of that tied game instead of manning up and fighting for a win.  Fuck it.  It's not worth it for me to get upset about it.

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeze.

Now it's been nine times in a row that Virginia Tech has fricasseed our asses and/or let the air out of that balloon.  We're pushing a decade.  And that 2003 Wahoo win was the outlier -- the Hokies have beaten us in nine straight, and 13 out of 14 stretching back to 1999.  That's bad.  That's unacceptable.

What's also unacceptable is this 4-8 record.  Yeah, there are reasons (read: excuses) why we were bad this season -- Al Groh's weaksauce 2008 and 2009 recruiting classes being the only one that really holds water with me.  But 4-8 is not indicative of our talent level.  It's less than the sum of the parts.  We underplayed our hand, and we failed to live up to our ability level.  That's bad.  That's unacceptable.

There are now questions - serious questions - surrounding Mike London's ability to lead this program where we want and need it to go.  Therefore, I have a list of demands for our football program for the next 12 months.  He needs to meet this list of demands in order to answer those questions and maintain my full faith and support.

Demand #1 -- Make a coaching change geared toward fixing special teams.
Look, I love Anthony Poindexter.  I also appreciate loyalty, maybe more than most.  And I'm glad that London is loyal to his assistants.  But special teams directly cost us the LaTech and Maryland games, and played a big role in several of our other losses.  Something needs to be done.  London needs to prove he has some teeth and that he's willing to take a bite out of his coaching staff in order to cure what ails the program.  It's time to relieve Dex from special teams duty, and maybe remove him from the staff altogether (though his recruiting ability would be missed.)  It's time to make a bold move for a true special teams coordinator, and attempt to turn our biggest liability into a strength over the course of this offseason.

Love you Dex, but you're in over your head.
Your special teams suck.

Demand #2 -- Keep the very good 2013 recruiting class together.
We can't afford to hemorrhage any of these recruits because of our piss-poor record this season.  We gotta keep 'em all committed.  Some of the guys have the wandering eye.  We don't have to worry about practicing for a bowl game - BOOM! - so we need to be out on the recruiting trail stitching up the 2013 class and also laying serious rail for 2014 and 2015.

Demand #3 -- Force some accountability upon the offensive gameplanning and playcalling.
I'm not suggesting we should shitcan Bill Lazor.  But the message needs to be delivered - loud and clear - that things are going to change; that Virginia will no longer be the predictable, dink-and-dunk, milquetoast garbage we saw in 2012.  No more wilting under pressure.  No more limited shots downfield, and no more playing it safe to the point of crippling our chances to score points.  It's time for an explosive offense, and I think four years is long enough to build it.  Mike London needs to talk to Bill Lazor about how much he hates the vanilla flavor of our offense, and we need to see tangible progress toward spicing things up in the spring.

Demand #4 -- Choose a fucking quarterback.
Mike Rocco vs. Phillip Sims vs. David Watford vs. Greyson Lambert this spring.  And leaving spring practice, one of them needs to be chosen to lead this team, and that announcement needs to be delivered to the media and the fans.  It's time to commit to one of these guys.  No more musical quarterbacks.  Show us you have the stones to pick one and make the necessary commitment to him that allows him to fully take the reins.  Seriously.  CHOOSE A FUCKING QUARTERBACK.

Rock is probably my guess to lead the team in 2013.  He'll be a senior,
and he's been right there as the team has worked through this rebuilding process.

Demand #5 -- Develop Jake McGee.
McGee is an otherworldly talent, but he lacks a position.  I'm going to use him as my unofficial litmus test on this staff's ability (or inability) to develop talent and find roles for unique players.  McGee received a criminally low number of targets down the stretch this season.  He's our best receiver -- pump the ball to him!  Didn't happen, but now I demand the situation to be rectified.

Demand #6 -- Kiss my ass.
I met today's loss with a feeling of annoyed apathy, and if I'm feeling that way, I know legions of Hoofans have already written off their allegiance to Virginia football.  As the weary die-hard Virginia fan, I need to be romanced back into excitement and enthusiasm for the football program.  I don't know what form that needs to take, but it's on London to fucking figure it out.

Demand #7 -- Lower ticket prices.
Take away seats from the students and expand the availability of the $100 season tickets beyond faculty/staff and young alumni.  Help area residents bring their whole families to games for cheap, and cultivate a new demographic of fans.  Mike London wants UVA to be Virginia's team, so UVA needs to price its tickets for the Virginia populace, not just for the popped collar hoity-toity fuckfaces that don't understand how to be good football fans.

Limit the student section to just the lower bowl,
and maybe it'll look like this for every game.

Demand #8 -- Bowl game or bust in 2013.
Can't really expand on that one a whole lot.  Gotta win enough games to go bowling, the program has to show progress to that level.

Demand #9 -- Beat Virginia Tech.
2013.  The losing streak has to end there.


I'll revisit this list of demands throughout the upcoming 12 months.



Fuck it, time for some pizza.

Wahooze Pix - Week Thirteen

Last Week
Mike: 7 (out of 10)
Pierce: 7
Kendall: 5
Adam: 4

Standings
Pierce - 63

Mike - 62
Guests - 60
Kendall - 59

Last week 

Good morning Wahooze lovers. Welcome to rivalry week - and the Hoos last game of this disappointing football season. Luckily for everyone, this wont be the last week of Wahooze Pix - we've got you covered through the championships and bowls. So everything is still very much in the air - anyone can win (even Kendall). 

This week's games include some great rivalries (and BC v NCSU). Will the ACC show up against their SEC foes? Will the Wahoos win in Blacksburg for the first time since...1998? Will someone light Maryland's bus on fire? We can all only hope.

This week's guest is one of my oldest friends: Garrett. You can find him at Hoos basketball games trying to discover the next Sammy Zeglinski or arguing the unpopular opinions on a certain UVA message board. For his safety, I'll leave out his username. Garrett has been going to UVA games as long as he's been alive - we'll see if his picks can help the Guests overtake the overall standings. Also, G's not one for clever commentary, so we'll just have his picks below:
And this dashing headshot




Vandy (-12.5) @ Wake
Dores: Mike, Pierce, Garrett
Deacs: Kendall

Kendall: Vanderbilt is the better team, but I believe we'll see some fight from Wake as they try to get bowl eligible.

Mike: Wake looked bad vs. Notre Dame. I'm embarrassed we lost to them.

Pierce: Vandy is a better team than Wake is a desperate one.

GT @ UGA (-13)
Al Groh Sucks: No one
Uga: Everyone

Kendall: Easiest pick of the Millennium.

Mike: This won't be a game. Neither will the ACC Championship

Pierce: Dawgs roll, easy. Ladies and Gentlemen - your costal division champion!

UMD @ UNC (-24)
Garbage: Garrett
Heels: Kendall, Mike, Pierce

Kendall: Enjoy them, B1G.  We won't miss them one iota.

Mike: Maryland needs the season to end. ASAP.

Pierce: Ridiculous spread, but I'm not picking the Horseshit team from the north. 

UVA @ VT (-10.5)
Hoos: Mike, Pierce, Garrett
Turkeys: Kendall

Kendall: The Hokies just have that weird edge over us that this year's team isn't ready to overcome.

Mike: Kiss of death. Too many points. Logan Thomas will miss at least this many based on his inability to pass.

Pierce: Too many points in Phil Sims plays the majority. I think the Hoos hang it all out, at least keep it close. 

Miami (-5.5) @ Duke
Canes: Mike, Pierce
Blue Devils: Kendall, Garrett

Kendall:  Self-banning has to be deflating for the team.

Mike: Put Duke in their place.

Pierce: Miami easy.

BC @ NCSU (-14)
Eagles: Garrett
Pack: Kendall, Mike, Pierce

Kendall:  State will be looking to finish the season strong.

Mike: Spaz is the worst coach in America. Rolled over for VT last weekend.  I hope the players mail this in.

Pierce: Big spread for an inconsistent team, but BC sucks.

Fla @ FSU (tossup)
Gators:  Pierce, Garrett
Noles: Kendall, Mike

Kendall:  I still have faith in FSU, and I always pull for them in this game because I effing hate Florida.

Mike: FSU's drive to the national championship needs a huge statement win here. FSU will try and run up the score.

Pierce: Florida is going to win, sorry ACC.

USC @ Clemson (-4)
Cocks: Mike, Garrett
Dabos: Kendall, Pierce

Kendall:  I like the Tigers at home, but really this one could go either way.

Mike: Clemson in a big spot? That's what I thought.

Pierce: Clemson reps for the ACC here, I think. Haven't heard much from the Cocks since Lattimore went down. Clowney is still my Heisman vote.

Michigan @ OSU (-4.5)
Blue: Garrett
Buckeyes: Kendall, Mike, Pierce

Kendall:  I don't really know (or care) about this game, but I can't wait to watch these two teams stomping mudholes in Maryland.

Mike: I'll enjoy OSU being the only undefeated team this season.

Pierce: OSU wins big here. Remember all that preseason Michigan hype? Haha.

Miss St @ Ole Miss (-1)
Bulldogs: Pierce
Rebels: Kendall, Mike, Garrett

Kendall:  I'm always kinda feelin' the Rebs.

Mike: Love the Rebs

Pierce: Aw shit the Egg bowl. I like the Bulldogs here. 

Stanford (1.5) @ UCLA
Cardinal: Kendall, Pierce, Garrett
Bruins: Mike

Kendall: They'll come down off the cloud hard, but I still think the Cardinal have enough to top UCLA.

Mike: Boom. UCLA is much better than I thought.

Pierce: Stanford's legit, plus if UCLA wins this game, they have to play Oregon in the conference championship. If they lose, they get a rematch with the Cardinal. Time to scout all their plays and give away the result. 


GOOOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOS



November 23, 2012

Here you go...



It's time to beat these scumbags.  So tired of this kind of bullcrap.

Not sure if this year's team has the goods to go down to Blacksburg and beat the Hokies in Lame Stadium filled to the brim with mouth-breathing rednecks.  But if I am granted one holiday wish, it is that.  Oh, and maybe a slice of humble pie for young Mr. Gayle in the form of a devastating chop block or something.  I wonder what he'd tweet after that?



November 22, 2012

Terrapin Treason

Hey guys!  Happy Thanksgiving!

While your busy digesting, I thought I'd drop in and offer up some light reading.

First and foremost, I just want to make sure you have seen these three pieces pertaining to Maryland's dirtbag move to the Big Ten.

A Step Too Far?, by SI's Stewart Mandel

Expansion by Big Ten May Bring Small Payoff, by The New York Times' Nate Silver

i hate college football, from the excellent blog From Old Virginia


My take on Maryland's move to the B1G?

1) I think it's total bullshit that they can grossly mis-manage their athletic department to the tune of seven cancelled sports, and then find this golden parachute.  It's a dumpster couch fire up there in College Park, and now they'll be able to throw piles of cash on it to keep it burning.

2) Careful what you wish for, B1G.  Yes, you may be expanding the footprint of the BTN into the DC, Baltimore, and NY/NJ markets, but how many people in those areas even care about college football?  The Terps and Scarlet Knights water down your product immensely.  I can't help but think this was fueled - at least in part - over [B1G Commissioner] Jim Delaney being butthurt over Notre Dame making a commitment to the ACC over the Big Ten.  Sour grapes is not a good reason to invite these two dead-end athletic departments to your boats & hoes party.

Enjoy this shit, Big Ten.

3) I am worried about the ACC, but much more importantly, I am worried about where UVA is going to land.  I do not wish for Big Ten membership.  Sure, the money would be nice, as would the AAU affiliations.  But dammit I'm a fan, and I don't want to see UVA vs. Minnesota or UVA vs. Iowa as conference games.  We're a southern school with southern rivalries, and we belong in the ACC.  That said, if the ACC is crumbling (and there's no reason to panic about that... yet), then we gotta jump fast, and I don't see a place for us in the SEC or Big XII.

4) I am choosing my words very, very carefully here: FUCK MARYLAND.  The ACC needs to make damn sure it doesn't budge on the $50M buyout, and UVA needs to make damn sure we never, ever, ever, ever, ever schedule the Terps for a regular season game, ever again.  Let them rot in the Big Ten, with an athletic department just as horrendously run as it's always been, but with more money to throw on the bonfire.

5) I am boycotting Under Armor.  I hope that you will join me.

5) What's next for the ACC?  Stay firm at 13 members for football and 14 for all other sports, or make a quick, strong stab at UConn, Louisville, Cincinnati, or USF (in order of likelihood)?  Or will we now see F$U make their move toward the Big XII, thus triggering the collapse of the conference -- Clemson following F$U to the B12, VT and NC State to the SEC, and GT begging for inclusion somewhere, anywhere.

For now, we're back in wait-and-see mode.  I like to think Maryland doesn't have the power or sway to send those dominoes tumbling... but only time will tell.  It's kind of like the house trailer at the edge of town just burned down.  Will we let the smoke ruin our quality of life here in the suburbs?









November 19, 2012

UMD to the B1G

It's official.

From ESPN's Big Ten Blog:

The University of Maryland Board of Regents unanimously approved a move to the Big Ten on Monday, a source tells ESPN colleague Brett McMurphy. 
An official announcement is expected at 4 p.m. ET at the school's campus in College Park, Md.  
Maryland must officially apply for Big Ten membership, and needs a yes vote by at least nine of the 12 Big Ten presidents/chancellors (80 percent required) for admission. This is basically a formality.

After two decades of relative quiet, the Big Ten is poised to expand for the second time in two and a half years. Rutgers is expected to follow Maryland, giving the league 14 members.

Much, much more to come...

What does this mean?  Not sure yet.  A lot of things to consider.  But as my friend Doug just said: All eyes are on Trailerhassee now --- if FSU gets the wandering eye, the ACC grenade could explode, blowing UVA and UNC to the Big Ten.

Stay tuned...


November 17, 2012

REALIGNMAGEDDON -- Maryland to the B1G?!?

I kinda thought I'd never have the chance to do another REALIGNMAGEDDON post, but then this fun little rumor bubbled up: Maryland to the Big Ten.

WHAAAAAATTTTT?!?

You read that correctly.  Check it out...

As the Conferences Turn: Maryland, Big Ten rumors back in vogue

Not sure that it's even possible, given the new $50mil ACC buyout.  But the fun part of the rumor has the B1G releasing Penn State in order to add Maryland.

Trading the Terps for the Nits?  Sign me up!

More importantly, sign ESPN up!

November 15, 2012

Choose your fate...

Tonight will go one of three ways.  And each of those three outcomes will go a long way toward deciding how this football season will ultimately be viewed by fans and recruits alike.  It's a "set the trajectory" type of game.

If Virginia Wins...
The miracle turnaround continues, as does the destiny march toward a bowl game.  We'll become media darlings for our gritty reversal of fortune.  A 5th win in a clear rebuilding season is a pretty big deal, regardless of what happens against Virginia Tech on November 24th.  This season can - and will - be seen as another step along the path toward rebuilding this program into something formidable, and the questions surrounding the coaching staff (other than Poindexter heading up special teams) will die down as everyone, even the habitual doubters, will buy back in.  The game against the Hokies on the 24th will be for a bowl berth, and a super-motivated UVA team will roll into Blecchsburg hyped, confident, and on a mission.  Not sure if it'll matter in the end, but I would like our chances in that scenario.

Do you have another magic moment in you, Jake McGee?


If Virginia Loses a Close Game...
Expect to hear an audible WHOOSH leaving the stadium as the fanbase quickly deflates after being pumped up by the wins over NC State and Miami.  It'll be a big opportunity lost, and many will begin to play the "what if" game.  What if we hadn't put 12 on the field against LaTech?  What if our special teams had been merely competent against Maryland?  What if the punt hadn't doinked off of Khalek Shepherd's facemask against Wake?  What if we had done x, y, and z we needed to do to beat UNC?  But in the end, I think most reasonable fans ("reasonable fan" being a clear paradox) will still be able to see the improvement down the stretch, and will accept a 4-8 finish as improvement for the team after its 2-6 start that seemed the be leading directly toward a 2-10 swirl-the-toilet type of disaster.  I think we'll head to Tech feeling like we have a chance to spring the upset, though the Hokies will be heavily favored and will hold a tangible edge in all the intangible categories that help decide the outcomes of football games.  I think a close loss to UNC leads us into a blowout loss against Tech.  A sad end to the season, but 4-8 is still a lot better than 2-10.

Don't wanna see tonight's game end like this.


If Virginia Loses in a Blowout...
Fans leave angry and depressed.  The last two wins are written off as flukes and stripped of any value.  We're dropped back on our humpty dumpty heads, trying to pick up the pieces from a lost season.  Recruiting momentum is halted, intense pressure is put back on the coaching staff, and disbelievers begin to stretch their vocal chords yet again.  We head to Tech to receive our annual beating, and then slink off quietly into the terrifying abyss of the long, dark offseason.  2013 becomes a "show me" season, where another losing record leads London into lame duck status as too many fans and boosters lose faith that can never be regained.

There could be trouble around the corner, Coach.  Big trouble.


So which is it going to be, Virginia Football?  Choose your fate, as tonight is your dance with destiny.



Wahooze Pix - Week Twelve

Last Week
Adam - 5 (of 9)
Pierce - 4
Kendall - 4
Mike - 4

Standings
Pierce - 56

Guests - 56
Mike - 55

Kendall - 54


Two weeks in a row, we've all lost to our super intelligent guests. Bravo guests, we know nothing. The guests are also tied for the season standings lead, so I guess Leah and Adam get to take over the blog if they end up winning the whole thing. 

This week's game include tonight's matchup on ESPN between the Hoos and the Heels, and VPI (winless on the road this season) going up to Boston College. Both teams are playing to keep their bowl hopes alive. If both win, the Commonwealth Cup will also be the right to play in some shitty town in a bowl I've never heard of! Go Hoos!

Guest intro comes from Kendall this week: One of the best things about this football season has been tailgating with and getting to know Adam.  He started out as my brother's friend, but now I can safely say he's my friend too.  Thanks for being a guest picker for us, Adam, and thanks for reading the blog.  Also, thanks for the beers and whiskey this season.  It was a BLAST! [Ed. note: Give us whiskey and you get to be the guest picker.]


UNC -3.5 @ UVA
Heels: Kendall, Mike
Hoos: Pierce, Adam

Kendall: I pick against the Hoos because it's been good luck for them when I do so.  Also - and this pains me to say - I don't see us being able to contain Gio Bernard.

Mike: Didn't like how many big plays we gave up. Gio Bernard is much better than duke Johnson too. I am officially worried.

Pierce: Fuck it, we're going to win x 3

Adam:  Bernard puts up video game numbers, but the Hoos continue their November magic.


Duke @ GT (-13)
Devils: Adam, Mike
Al Groh Sucks: Kendall, Pierce

Kendall: The Wreck needs this win for bowl eligibility, and I betcha they come out really fired up and smoke Duke.


Mike: I actually know a Duke football fan now. It's like finding a rare white elk. I think the devils can hang.

Pierce: GT has found it's offense, but still has no defense. Duke doesn't have the athletes like other teams - even if Duke scores 40, tech will score 60.

Adam:  Devils have had a bye week to prep for the triple option, will keep it close in Hotlanta.

VT (-9) @ BC
Turkeys: Kendall, Adam
Jesuits: Pierce, Mike

Kendall: Yeahbuddy.


Mike: Gimmie that upset.

Pierce: On the road against a terrible team...Tech wins, but not by 10. 

Adam:  Nobody rallies the wagons like Pud and Slappy. Sets up "Battle for .500" in Blacksburg on November 24th.

USF @ Miami (-6.5)
Bulls: No one.
Canes: Everyone.

Kendall: Canes ride Duke Johnson hard, and put him away wet.


Mike: Getting players back on d. Don't think last week will be too demoralizing.

Pierce: Spread is oddly low...I guess because Miami can't play defense.

Adam: Duke Johnson will be a thorn in our ass the next 2 years. If the U survives sanctions part deux...

FSU (-31) @ MD
Noles: Everyone
Garbage: No one

Kendall: Tomahawk Chop to oblivion.

Mike: Noles need style points. Sorry turtles.

Pierce: There's nothing stopping FSU from winning by 50.

Adam:  I just feel so terrible for the Terps and their 12th string QB. LOLZ

NCSU @ Clemson (-17.5)
Pack: Pierce, Adam
Paws: Kendall, Mike

Kendall:  Big spread, but the Tiggers have gathered a full head of steam and are in hot pursuit of an at-large BCS bid.


Mike: NC State can't let Clemson get out ahead. Unfortunately they let everyone get out ahead

Pierce: Spread is way too high, to me.

Adam: Trap game for the Tiger Paws before their showdown against South Carolina.

Wake @ ND (-24)
Deacs: Mike, Adam
Domes: Kendall, Pierce

Kendall: Wake is horrendous.  Just absolutely horrendous.How the hell did we lose to them?


Mike: Wake will cover. Notre dame not built for the blowout.

Pierce: If NCSU can beat wake by 31, Notre Dame can win by 25.

Adam: Will be a typical Notre Dame game against an inferior opponent this year: Irish win in a slop fest. 

OSU @ Wisc (-2.5)
Buckeyes: Mike, Pierce, Adam
Badgers: Kendall

Kendall: Screw Urban Meyer, and get bent Ohio State.

Mike: I hope for irony's sake the is Urban's only good season.

Pierce: Not sure why Wisconsin is favored here.

Adam: Urban Meyer must curse Terelle Pryor's name daily for ruining another shot at a natty.

Stanford @ Oregon (-21.5)
Cardinal: Pierce, Mike, Adam
Duck: Kendall

Kendall: The Ducks are going to win the national championship and send Chip Kelly off into the sunset.


Mike: Weird tree>weird uniforms

Pierce: Standford should keep it close.

Adam: Love Stanford's style of football, will grind the clock and keep Oregon's O off the field.

Tenn @ Vandy (-4)
Vols: Kendall
Dores: Mike, Pierce, Adam

Kendall: No real reason, other than a gut feeling.


Mike: Still love you Derek. You can even keep those pants if you come.

Pierce: Vandy runs up the score, just cuz.

Adam: Vols mailed it in a few weeks ago.