Ketch's 10 Thoughts From the Weekend (Don't get mad at me for saying this...)

Discussion in 'Ketch's 10 Thoughts From the Weekend Archive' started by Ketchum, Oct 14, 2018.

  1. Ketchum

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    Ok, everyone... *exhale*.

    With the standout reporting from Anwar Richardson (and later confirmed by the school) on Sunday afternoon that established the injury status of Sam Ehlinger as something much closer to a sigh of relief than a call for panic, the Orangebloods universe can focus on a newfound reality that came into even clearer focus following a weekend that shook college football to the ground.

    As impossible as it seems to be having this thought, let alone writing it down for everyone to see, Tom Herman's second-year Longhorns are 100-percent squarely in the college playoff mix with five regular-season games to go. It's six if the Longhorns play in the Big 12 Championship game.

    Considering there's zero margin for error for the Longhorns after picking up a loss to Maryland in the season-opener, the idea of Texas running off 12 straight wins seems improbable on the surface, but there's no getting around these two things.

    a. Texas is already positioned inside the top 10.
    b. The final five regular-season games are pretty inviting.

    Outside of a road game to Lubbock, the Longhorns will be favored to win each of their remaining games against the likes of Oklahoma State (road), West Virginia (home), Iowa State (home) and Kansas (away). Other than Notre Dame, you can make a case that the Longhorns have the clearest road to a clean finish to the season as anyone else that's in the discussion.

    I'd normally be the first to issue caution with so much football left to play this season, but you'd have to intentionally close your eyes to miss what is suddenly staring this Texas program squarely in the face.

    Perhaps in a month from now, just being in the Big 12 Championship game will be enough, but for the moment...

    Dare I say ...

    You have my permission to dream big.

    No. 2 - About the play-tipping on offense ...

    As mentioned in my Instant Analysis of the game, one of the things that is impossible to ignore about the Texas offense is the apparent play-tipping that takes place based on the depth of the running back on each play. As first pointed out by Fox Sports analyst Joel Klatt, the Longhorns show pass when the back lines up next to the Texas quarterback and show run when the running back lines up deeper than a yard behind the quarterback.

    In re-watching the game, here's the breakdown of plays (including plays that didn't count because of penalties):

    When the Longhorns lined up with a running back even, on the hip or within a half-yard of the quarterback, they threw the ball 33 of 35 times.

    When the depth of the running back moved to more than a yard behind the quarterback, Texas ran the ball 34 times out of 41 occasions. Usually, when the Longhorns throw the ball from this look, it's a screen of some variety to either Collin Johnson or Lil'Jordan Humphrey. In fact, the most interesting thing that the Texas offense showed in the entire game occurred when the team was trying to run out the clock in the final four minutes of the game, as Tom Herman dialed up three straight passes to Johnson/Humphrey from a deep-back set, which flew in the face of the trends established from the rest of the game.

    The Longhorns might have been able to run the clock out with a couple of late first downs had they continued to distance themselves away from their trends instead of returning to them after those three plays, not including the third down Wildcat run that proved to be the final play on offense that the Longhorns ran in the game.

    At no point in the game did Texas throw the ball down the field outside of a five-yard box when throwing out of a deep-back set.

    Also, you can usually tell if the team is checking in or out of a play based on whether the running back changes his depth. If the Longhorns check from a run to a pass play, you'll see the running back move into the hip of the quarterback. If it's a check from a pass to a run, you'll see the running back move back a step or two. When the quarterback is only trying to give the appearance of a changed call, you can usually tell because the running back doesn't change depth.

    A note for full transparency ...

    There are times when the running back is lined up in a gray area of sorts with its positioning, when he wasn't quite within that half-yard window of the quarterback that screams pass, but he was probably closer to three-quarters of a yard than a full-yard. On most of these occasions, I marked the play as a "deep-back" formation, but there were likely a couple of these gray area situations that went the other way. It felt like a judgment call and I was into the second half before realizing that I should have simply marked them all the same or created a separate category for the half-yard to three-quarter yard range. All in all, we're probably talking about no more than 4-6 plays.

    No. 3 - If I had to guess today ...

    I was thinking about the players on this team that I believe are headed towards all-Big 12 seasons and here's where my head is coming out of the weekend.

    (Note: This is the way I think it would shake out if the voting occurred today, not automatically who I would choose if I was making the decisions.)

    First-team All-Big 12 Offense: Calvin Anderson (LT)

    First-team All-Big 12 Defense:
    Chris Nelson (DT), Charles Omenihu (Texas) and Brandon Jones (S) and Caden Sterns

    Second-team All-Big 12 Offense:
    Collin Johnson (WR), Lil'Jordan Humphrey (WR) and Sam Cosmi (RT)

    Second-team All-Big 12 Defense: Kris Boyd (CB) and Gary Johnson (LB)

    Honorable mention: Sam Ehlinger (QB), Keontay Ingram (QB), Elijah Rodriguez (RG), Breckyn Hager (DE), Anthony Wheeler (LB) and Davante Davis (CB)

    No. 4 - Collin Johnson and Lil'Jordan Humphrey might be making history ...

    Did you know that in the history of the Texas football program, only eight times has a wide receiver caught 1,000 yards worth of passes in a single season.

    The six players that comprised those eight seasons: Jordan Shipey (2008-09), Roy Williams (2002-03), Kwame Cavil (1999), Quan Cosby (2008), Wane McGarity (1998) and John Harris (2014).

    Both Collin Johnson and Lil'Jordan Humphrey have a chance to get there this season based on their current pace. Humphrey leads the team with 82.3 yards per game, which projects to 1,070 yards over 13 games. Johnson is second on the team with 80.4 yards per game, which translates to 1,045 yards over 13 games.

    Obviously, if the Longhorns play in the Big 12 Championship game in December, we'll be talking about the team playing in a 14th game, which would likely give them more than enough room to both pull off 1,000 yards seasons, barring injuries.

    Only the beloved Shipley/Cosby tandem in 2008 (with Colt McCoy as their quarterback) have ever pulled off what Johnson/Humphrey are on the verge of pulling off. The Texas program has never had two players reach 1,100 yards receiving in the same season.

    That's the company that this current pair of receivers is keeping.

    No. 5 - Story time with Uncle Ketch ...


    [​IMG]

    Earlier this year marked the 10-year anniversary of the final month of Darrell Scott's recruitment, which is remembered as one of the most infamous recruiting moments in the history of this site, which was highlighted by our very own Jason Suchomel getting banned from his announcement after making the trip from Texas to be on hand.

    Scott wound up committing to Colorado, which is a bit ironic considering Texas actually went to that state twice in 11 seasons (from 1997-2008) to land a five-star running back, each time coming up short in its pursuit in various manners.

    Back in 1997, John Mackovic and Co. actually signed Darnell McDonald (the nation's No. 1 running back prospect), only to watch him use his signing with the Longhorns as leverage in baseball negotiations with the Orioles, which included a press conference held in Austin that summer.

    Yet the five-star running back that stands out the most all these years later is Marcus Houston, a member of the Class of 2000, who selected Colorado over Texas out of pure state pride obligation.

    Of all the kids I've ever covered in recruiting over the last quarter-century, Houston stands out as perhaps my favorite of all-time, which is kind of ironic because I don't think we've spoken for nearly two decades. Houston is probably the only kid I've ever covered that I believed had a chance to be a senator or even the president. You just couldn't find a more impressive young man.

    For those that don't remember how his recruitment went down, Houston loved Texas and if all things had been equal, he'd have signed with Mack Brown and Tim Brewster, but this wasn't an even playing field because his reputation in the state of Colorado was such that I don't think I've ever seen a kid face more pressure to stay in-state. Even though he wanted to be a Longhorn, he selected Colorado out of pure obligation, sensing that it was important that he stayed in-state in the event that he actually became the type of person who might have one day ended up running for office.

    It turned out to be a disaster because Houston and then Colorado running backs coach Eric Bienemy had a horrible relationship, so much so that Bienemy referred to Houston as "Markeisha" to the local media. Eventually he transferred to Colorado State, finishing with 1,355 yards and 14 touchdowns in his collegiate career.

    How much did I like Houston?

    On a trip to Hawaii with the rest of the Rivals All-America team, I escorted Houston to a spot in Santa Monica during a 20-hour layover on the way to Maui, so that he could meet up with his brother, who was a defensive back for UCLA. It turned out to be a spot where half of the UCLA and USC football teams were having a good time. Upon just a little reflection, it was the type of responsibility that I probably shouldn't have willingly volunteered for. It sounds good on paper to chaperone a visit between a prospect and his older bother, but probably not when the prospect is a five-star running back being recruited by his brother's school. I'm just glad I got everyone back to the Rivals hotel safely.

    Let's just say that if I had been Houston, it would have been very hard for me to say no to UCLA.

    All these years later, it appears that Houston is a 37-year old lawyer in the Colorado Springs area. I think I'll reach out to him this week. Maybe I can get him on a podcast to retell the stories of his recruitment.

    No. 6 - Compare and contrast ...

    Redshirt freshman starting right tackle Sam Cosmi was a mid-three star in the Rivals recruiting ranks, who had offers from Texas, Houston, TCU and Memphis when he signed with the Longhorns in 2017.

    He wasn't a guy that was even ranked among the top 85 or so players at his position across the country in the Rivals rankings.

    Yet, here he is seven games into his redshirt freshman season and a case can be made that Cosmi is performing at a level higher than any other tackle in the Big 12.

    I thought it would be interesting to take a look this week at the top 10 tackles from the 2017 class and see how they compared to Cosmi. As it turns out, the Class of Beef in 2017 has a chance to be incredibly special.

    1. Alex Leatherwood (Alabama) - After playing in seven games as a true freshman, Leatherwood has emerged as a starter at right guard for the No. 1 Tide.

    2. Walker Little (Stanford) -
    Earned Pac-12 Freshman Offensive Co-Player of the Year honors in 2017 and continues to start at left tackle for the Cardinal, although he hasn't taken the steps from year one to year two that many people had expected.

    3. Foster Sarell (Stanford) -
    Although he played in 14 games as a true freshman, Sarell hasn't yet emerged as a starter for the Cardinal this season.

    4. Isaiah Wilson (Georgia) -
    After redshirting last season, Wilson has started six games at right tackle for the Dawgs this season.

    5. Jedrick Wills (Alabama) -
    After playing in 11 games at right tackle as a true freshman (one start), Wills has emerged as the starting right tackle for the No. 1 Tide.

    6. Navaughn Donaldson (Miami) -
    Started 10 games at right guard as a true freshman and has moved into the every-game starting right tackle as a sophomore.

    7. Calvin Ashley (Auburn) -
    Hasn't yet emerged as a starting level player for the Tigers, although he is currently on the two-deep as a redshirt freshman.

    8. Trey Smith (Tennessee) -
    Has started every game of his Tennessee career (17 starts), including five this season at left tackle. Smith is already regarded as one of the best linemen in the SEC.

    9. Austin Jackson (USC) -
    In his first season of action, Jackson has emerged as the starter at left tackle for the Trojans this year.

    10. Andrew Thomas (Georgia) -
    A year ago, Thomas started 15 games at right tackle for the national runner-up and now he's holding down the left tackle starting position as a true sophomore. Is projected to be a very high NFL Draft pick in the next year or two.

    The top five in-state tackles in 2017 aren't quite as stellar.

    1. Walker Little (See above)

    2. Chuck Filiaga (Michigan) - Currently a reserve for the Wolverines

    3. Stephan Zabie (UCLA) - Washed out of the UCLA program after one season. Might already be done with football based on the fact that I can't find him on a college roster anywhere at the moment.

    4. Xavier Newman (Baylor) - Started most of the season as a true freshman, but has dealt with injuries that have kept him off the field this year.

    5. Grant Polley (Colorado) - After redshirting last year, Polley is sitting out the entire 2018 season for "personal reasons".

    No. 7 – Buy or Sell …
    [​IMG]

    BUY or SELL: Iowa State is the toughest remaining regular season game?

    (Sell) If the game was in Ames, I'd probably say yes because of ISU's defense, but I'm still going to bunch the game in Lubbock and the home against West Virginia as the top two. This answer is subject to change if Sam Ehlinger is limited or misses any additional game time.

    BUY or SELL: Texas will be in the top 4 of CFP poll within the next month?

    (Sell) I'm not sure I see Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State or Notre Dame losing in the next 30 days.

    BUY or SELL: Caden Sterns will be a "top five" DB in UT football history?

    (Buy) He's having the best freshman season of any DB in Texas history, so I'm going to say yes.

    BUY or SELL: Coming off a bye week, we might see Cameron Rising or Casey Thompson with a small package of plays vs OSU in Stillwater?

    (Sell) Unless Tom Herman is forced to play his two freshmen, I'm not expecting to see either play in a game this season. By not playing either Rising or Thompson, it keeps Herman in a position to tell both of them that the battle between the two hasn't really started yet, which protects his depth if Buchele ends up departing after the season.
    BUY or SELL: The Longhorns will rebound from barely surviving Rape U. by marching into Stillwater and inflicting such gonadal damage to Mike Gundy that he'll vomit up bone dust from his pelvis?
    [/B]
    (Sell) Until I know Ehlinger is starting that game and not limited, I'm going to assume the game in Stillwater proves to be tricky.

    BUY or SELL: If Sam and Tua switched places, Bama still wins the NC and Texas ends up with the same record/result last year?

    (Sell) Nick Saban would have never replaced Jalen Hurts with Ehlinger in the national championship game, which means Alabama would have lost to Georgia. Meanwhile, Texas might have won nine games if Tua had been the quarterback a year ago. The two players aren't remotely the same thing.

    BUY or SELL: With Tom Herman quantifying Keontay Ingram's health at 90 percent during the post-game press conference, it explains why Ingram has been on somewhat of a pitch count? Otherwise, Ingram should be receiving 20+ carries per game?

    (Sell) These Texas coaches prefer to have a group of players handle the responsibility, rather than just one player. I think the Ingram health question has been drummed up in the minds of Texas fans that struggle with processing the alternative reasoning.

    BUY or SELL: Coach Mehringer has corrected the problems we all saw last season (underdeveloped talent and questionable rotation decisions) and is no longer a coach who should be replaced?

    (Buy) Given the praise Mehringer received in yesterday's post-game press conference, I think it's fair to assume he's safe.

    BUY or SELL: You’d take Collin/LJH/Devin over Roy/BJ/Sloan?

    (Sell) With all due respect to Johnson and Humphrey, neither is the physically freakish animal that Roy Williams was.

    No. 8 – Eternal Randomness of the Spotty Sports Mind …

    ... If I had a vote that mattered ...

    1. Alabama
    2. Ohio State
    3. Clemson
    4. Notre Dame
    5. LSU
    6. Georgia
    7. Texas
    8. Michigan
    9. Oregon
    10. Oklahoma

    ... The only thing slowing Alabama down this season is an injury to Tua Tagovailoa. The Tide are a different team when he's on the field than when he's not.

    ... One week after looking like a hot mess on the road at Florida, LSU delivered one of the best performances of the season against Georgia. Go figure.

    ... After watching Iowa State dominate West Virginia, the game in Austin vs. the Mountaineers looks much easier to manage if you're Tom Herman. West Virginia simply couldn't block anyone and I'd guess that would be a problem against this Texas defense.

    ... Game Day Sign of the Year


    ... Don't look now, but Texas A&M is 5-2 and coming off a solid road win at South Carolina. Jimbo is looking at an eight- or nine-win season in year one.

    ... For once (and perhaps one time only), the 2018 Dallas Cowboys looked a hell of a lot like the 2016 Dallas Cowboys. That was one of the most complete performances by any team I've seen in the league this year. Do it again.

    ... Nathan Peterman was going to turn into Nathan Peterman at some point in the game against Houston and the Texans won the game because when he turned into Peterman, the Texans had defensive backs ready to capitalize. It wasn't a pretty win, but it was a win and suddenly the Texans are back to .500.

    ... Cincinnati must be so sick of Ben Roethlisberger. There was never a doubt that the Steelers would win the game after the Bengals took the lead with almost two minutes still left on the clock. Yes, you can score too soon.

    ... The Bears/Dolphins game was one of the most interesting games of the entire season. I shouldn't have enjoyed a game involving Brock Osweiler, but I most certainly did.

    ... If you have Todd Gurley on your fantasy team and don't win your league, you suck at fantasy football.

    ... The NLCS looks like a good ol' fashioned seven-game barn-burner. I'd love to see Clayton Kershaw get a game-seven start on the road.

    ... Yeah, Terence Crawford landed this one flush.


    No. 9 - The List: Top 10 Favorite Movies About Music ...

    [​IMG]

    After catching the soon-to-be-Oscars-contender A Star is Born last weekend, I wondered what a Top 10 list of my own personal favorite movies centered on some form of the music world might look like.

    Excluding musicals, movies centered around dancing or simply having an awesome soundtrack, here's what I came up with.

    10. Crazy Heart
    9. La Bamba
    8. Walk The Line
    7. High Fidelity
    6. 8 Mile
    5. Eddie and the Cruisers
    4. Whiplash
    3. Purple Rain
    2. A Star is Born (2018)
    1. Almost Famous

    No. 10 – And Finally...

    Because everyone's day is a little bit better when dogs get involved, I give you this.
     
    1 Ketchum, Oct 14, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
  2. speedy27

    speedy27 Well-Known Member
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  3. TaylorHorn

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    Close
     
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  4. gclass

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    ^^^ moving on up!
     
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  5. jimhbw

    jimhbw Well-Known Member
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    There's no mystery here! Got to get Sam back to keep this run going!
     
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  6. McLovin327

    McLovin327 Newsletter Editor
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    [​IMG]
     
  7. MB-HORNS

    MB-HORNS SUPERFAN
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    IMO they both bolt for the NFL after this season.
     
  8. Incognito2

    Incognito2 Well-Known Member
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    $100 Gary Johnson is 1st team All Big 12
     
  9. Califashorn

    Califashorn Well-Known Member
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    That was one helluva punch.
     
  10. Coelacanth

    Coelacanth Unknown Member
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    If it has been drummed up, it has been drummed up by Ingram and Herman. Ingram wore a brace against Kansas State, and Herman has said that he is not 100% on multiple occasions.
     
  11. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    :D
     
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  12. Jim DeLoach

    Jim DeLoach Well-Known Member
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    Understand the broader context of where you're coming from, but when it comes down to performances against OU and demonstrating leadership for the younger players, RW wouldn't come close to CJ/LJH.
     
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  13. Ketchum

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    Could very well be. He's not among the top tacklers in the conference and I think that might hurt him.
     
  14. Ketchum

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    except he dismissed the notion that it has an impact on how they are using the freshman.
     
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  15. Smootus

    Smootus I am aligned
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    @Ketchum ...
    I sincerely appreciate your efforts and I agree that it is amazing that Texas is in the chase..... I like your recruiting stories.... and I wonder... do you know Lonnie Bennett ? Any stories about him?
     
  16. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    Roy would post ridiculous numbers in a 2018 offense.
     
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  17. rgvhorn 89

    rgvhorn 89 Well-Known Member
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    [​IMG]
     
  18. AnwarsFedora

    AnwarsFedora Well-Known Member
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    I remember all the freaking out about Zabie and Pulley. OL are by far the hardest position to project.
     
  19. Coelacanth

    Coelacanth Unknown Member
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    The "alternative reasoning" is that they don't want to put too much of a burden on a true freshman.

    Is that not a reasonable alternative reasoning?
     
  20. Mars512

    Mars512 Well-Known Member
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    Ketch, do you think the coaches are aware of the running back tell, and possibly, do it on purpose to spring a surprise play off it?
     
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  21. EXQBcoach

    EXQBcoach Well-Known Member
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    Agree on your Roy Williams assessment.

    “Crazy Heart” too low, in my opinion. Amazing movie.
     
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  22. Manolo

    Manolo Well-Known Member
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    Collin Johnson will be first team Big 12.
     
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  23. Caskeyjm

    Caskeyjm Well-Known Member
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    Has anyone told the coaches about the tell on play calling?

    In another note, can we get Herman to talk about the freakish number of delay of game penalties?
     
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  24. KingPinChris

    KingPinChris Chumming for aggy’s on the Gulf
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    Cosmi may end up being one of the best before it’s all said and done. Kid has outstanding feet and when he adds a little more beef, he’ll be a handfull.
     
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  25. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    except at the very, very top it seems. The national listed is loaded with future pros.
     
  26. Ketchum

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    It's probably a piece of it. They don't seem to baby Sterns or Foster.
     
  27. Ketchum

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    It's been all season. Yes, they have to be aware.
     
  28. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    Have you seen the stats of the competition?
     
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  29. mackbrown

    mackbrown Inside the Yakk
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    Oh boy. This all but guarantees we finish the season 1-4 and Herman is out after next year.
     
  30. FrancoBevo

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    Bye week came just in time
     
  31. PaperChampion

    PaperChampion Well-Known Member
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    Cowboys should buy lottery tickets tonight. Dak fumbled the ball forward twice and both times the ball bounced three feet in the air right back into his arms while he was in full stride. Just ridiculously lucky shit.
     
    31 PaperChampion, Oct 14, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
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  32. CoSLonghorn

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    Georgia doesn’t belong one spot behind LSU.

    They lost by three scores.
     
    East Mall, Cdun, MATF and 2 others like this.
  33. Manolo

    Manolo Well-Known Member
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    Yes. They’re all fairly close. People watch the games too, it won’t be straight stats. It will be Hollywood Brown, Wesley and CJ.
     
  34. jimhbw

    jimhbw Well-Known Member
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    Speaking or movies about Music; can't wait for Bohemian Rhapsody. Which will be released on Nov 2.
     
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  35. McLovin327

    McLovin327 Newsletter Editor
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    Location:
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    So many great music centered films.

    A few worth considering in a top 10:
    - Purple Rain
    - The Blues Brothers
    - A Mighty Wind
    - Amadeus
    - Pink Floyd The Wall
    - Footloose
    - The Commitments
     
  36. Coelacanth

    Coelacanth Unknown Member
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    Sure, but every person is different in terms of what they can carry at what point.

    I think they've earned some trust in this department. The heavy reliance on Sterns & Foster underscores the point that they're not simply holding Ingram back for no reason at all.
     
  37. NativeTex

    NativeTex Well-Known Member
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    Count me MIA on the Mehringer love fest.
     
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  38. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    Tylan Wallace is 5th in the nation in receiving yards, averages more yards per catch and has the same number of touchdowns.
     
  39. Xbeehookem

    Xbeehookem Living on BPT
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    I’m just here to say Spence would destroy Crawford.
     
  40. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    Watson is now averaging 3.8 yards per carry, nearly three yards less per carry than Ingram.
     
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