13) Philadelphia Eagles were -2 in turnovers at Chicago Sunday; over the last 40 years, NFL road playoff teams who were -2 or worse in turnovers went 4-112 in those games.
But the Eagles won, so make that 5-112. Turnovers are still important.
12) Turns out the Chargers used seven defensive backs on every snap but one against the Ravens Sunday, which neutralized Lamar Jackson’s speed when he scrambled.
11) Underdogs covered the last ten NFL playoff games.
10) How is it that Kliff Kingsbury gets the boot at freakin’ Texas Tech, but is a hot commodity with NFL teams? Mike Leach won at Texas Tech, but doesn’t get any NFL looks. Having coached Pat Mahomes elevates his resume; would Lincoln Riley be a hot commodity now if he showed interest in an NFL head coaching job?
9) Ohio State hired Michigan DL coach Greg Mattison as its new co-defensive coordinator; he will team with former San Francisco 49ers DB’s coach Jeff Hafley, as new HC Ryan Day tells former Rutgers/Bucs’ HC Greg Schiano to take a hike.
8) Speaking of the Buckeyes, QB Dwayne Haskins declared for the NFL Draft, which figures since QB Justin Fields transferred from Georgia to Ohio State last week. If Haskins was staying in Columbus, Fields would’ve transferred somewhere else.
7) Is Haskins a first round draft pick? The last QB from a Big 14 school to be drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft was Kerry Collins, way back in 1995. Tom Brady/Drew Brees weren’t first round draft picks.
6) Things can change quickly. Three years ago, golfer Xander Schauffele started his season by missing nine of 12 cuts on the Web.com Tour; he wound up earning his PGA Tour card by only $11,687. Now he leads the race for the FedEx Cup (worth $10M).
5) #1 seeds in this round of NFL playoffs are 5-1 vs spread the last three years, but there is a quirk in there; Eagles were actually a home underdog to Atlanta in this round LY, because of Carson Wentz being hurt and his backup (the now-famous Nick Foles) starting in his place.
4) Major league baseball had a 4% drop in attendance last year, blamed in large part on bad weather in the spring and a change in how the Marlins and the Blue Jays accounted for sales (Marlins were lying about attendance before their sale).
Overall, the major leagues topped the $10B mark last year in total revenue.
3) Movie recommendation; Molly’s Game is playing on Showtime this month, a terrific movie (and a true story) about a woman who ran an underground poker game for celebrities and rich people in Los Angeles, and later New York. Tremendous movie.
2) Favorites covered eight of first nine ACC conference basketball games this season.
1)Clemson 44, Alabama 16:
— Sixth straight year underdog covered the national title game.
— Alabama didn’t score in last 44:18 of this game.
— Clemson ran a pick-6 in for a TD 1:40 into this game
— Tigers converted 10-15 on third down, Alabama only 4-13.
— Clemson WR Justyn Boyd looked like freakin’ Fred Biletnikoff, catching six balls for 153 yards and two TD’s; kid has tremendous hands.
— Clemson won two of the last three national titles; Alabama is still damn good.