Thursday’s Den: Random college football knowledge

— Replacing Nick Saban at Alabama is going to be really difficult; the fanbase is spoiled, the SEC is a really tough league. Very little chance this ends well.

Remember Gene Bartow coaching basketball at UCLA? The guy replaced John Wooden, he went 52-9 in two years, then beat feet to start the program at UAB, because back then, 52-9 at UCLA wasn’t good enough. Kind of like Alabama now.

Kalen DeBoer went 25-3 in two years at Washington, 12-6 in two years at Fresno State and before that, he was 67-3 at an NAIA school. Very good coach.

But Alabama has only 8 of 22 starters back from last year; good luck.

— Georgia scored 40.1 ppg last year; they’ve got nine starters back on offense, but lost four assistant coaches, two of whom became head coaches (Georgia State/Syracuse).

Last time Georgia didn’t play in a bowl: 1996.

— USC is in the Big 18 now; they got a break with their schedule- their three eastern road trips are in September/October. Trojans’ over/under win total is only 7.5, not very high; they’ve got only nine starters back. Who will play QB; last year’s backup, Miller Moss or UNLV transfer Jayden Maiava?

— Oklahoma/Texas are both in the SEC now; Sooners figure to struggle some. 

Oklahoma has a new:
Offensive coordinator
5 new offensive linemen

Sooners open with four straight home games, but Houston/Tennessee are two of those.

— As for Texas, they’ve got 5 starters back on offense, 7 on defense; their QB is back, and so are 4 of their starters on the offensive line, which is good. They’ve got a tough road game September 7 at Michigan.

Last year, Longhorns were #70 in country in 3rd down conversions (38.4%), 120th in country in TD %age in the red zone (50.8%). Those numbers need to improve.

Florida’s November schedule is kind of hard:
November 2- vs Georgia
November 9- @ Texas
November 16- LSU
November 23- Ole Miss
November 30- @ Florida State

No bye weeks in there; not ideal.

Coordinators who changed jobs since last year:
Ohio State OC Chip Kelly was head coach at UCLA last year.

Alabama DC Kane Wommack was the head coach at South Alabama last year.

Arkansas OC Bobby Petrino was head coach at Missouri State last year.

UCLA OC Eric Bieniemy was OC for the Commanders last year.

Boise State OC Dirk Koetter comes out of semi-retirement to revive the Broncos’ offense.

Michigan DC Wink Martindale was the Giants’ DC last year.

Famous birthdays for June 6th:
Max Venable, 67
Cam Neely, 59
Paul Giamatti, 57
Mark Ellis, 47

Anthony Rendon, 34
DeAndre Hopkins, 32
Joey Lucchesi, 31
Kenny Pickett, 26

12-team college football playoff starts with two games each December 20-21. 

Quarterfinals will have two games each December 31-January 1st.

Semi-finals are January 9-10.

National championship game is January 20th.

— Last year, I-A teams went 113-4 vs I-AA teams; it is stupid that these games are played, it is stealing money from fans to watch non-competitive games. This year, there are 121 of these games. Awesome.

I-A teams that lost to a I-AA team last year:
Buffalo, Nevada, Northern Illinois, Stanford.

Michigan QB Jack Tuttle was the 7th-rated QB in the 2018 freshman class; he is still a Wolverine. Here are some other QB’s who were also in that class:

#1- Trevor Lawrence- Was #1 pick in the 2021 draft
#11- Justin Fields- #11 pick in ‘21 draft just got traded to the Steelers.
#25- Zach Wilson- #2 pick in ’21 draft just moved to the Broncos.
#36- Michael Penix- #8 pick in 2024 draft by Atlanta.
#50- Brock Purdy- #262 pick in ’22 draft starts for the 49ers.

Tuttle isn’t the only QB in his 7th year of college football.

Oklahoma State’s Alan Bowman used to play at Texas Tech. 

Utah QB Cam Rising used to play at Texas.

— Clemson won its last five games LY, after starting the season 4-4; six true freshmen started 3+ games last year, and none of them transferred. This year, Tigers play Georgia, Florida State, NC State in their first five games.

Last year was first time in 12 years Clemson didn’t win 10+ games; they’ve only got three starters back on defense, but the offense figures to be improved.

— Coaches on the hot seat, alphabetically by school:
(In reality, every coach who lost his last game is on the hot seat, but still…….)
Arkansas- Sam Pittman- Hired Bobby Petrino to save his offense.
Baylor- Dave Aranda- Bears are 3-10 in last 13 games, with a home loss to Texas State.
BYU- Kalani Sitake- Were 118th in country running ball LY, now they’re in the Big X.
Florida- Billy Napier- He is 11-14 in two years, but has 13 starters back this season.
Pittsburgh- Pat Narduzzi- Pitt was 3-9 LY, then fired the offensive coordinator.

— Top QB’s who transferred this year:
Dillon Gabriel (Oklahoma to Oregon)
Cam Ward (Washington State to Miami)
Riley Leonard (Duke to Notre Dame)
DJ Uiagalelei (Clemson to Oregon State to Florida State)
Cam Howard (Kansas State to Ohio State)

— With all the conference shuffling going on, Oregon State/Washington State got screwed over, left behind to fend for themselves, all of which makes Oregon State-Oregon, Washington-Wazzu must watch TV this fall.

Beavers/Coogs are basically playing a Mountain West schedule for now; Oregon State’s coach bolted to Michigan State, and he’s an OSU alum. Not a good sign for the future. 

Author: Armadillo Sports

I've been involved in sports my whole life, now just write about them. I like to travel, mostly to Las Vegas- they have gambling there.