That's right, the official kickoff of the football season happened last night. I wont' use this space to complain about how I've never actually taken part in this unique standard of UC's football conference, rather, to rejoice its arrival.
We are now less than one week from the first Bearcats practice (Aug. 5) and just over a month from the opening game against Purdue (Aug. 31). We can stop talking about conference juggling and Ryan Braun's urine samples.
The Bearcats sent Brendon Kay, Austen Bujnoch, Jordan Stepp and Greg Blair.
Our sterling media team sent Dan Hoard and Video Shane to document the festivities.
Unfortunately not lobster, but let's eat ...
--- The media poll came out with UC slotting second behind Louisville, the Bearcats were the only team besides the Cardinals to receive a first-place vote, they had two.
|Team (1st votes)||Points|
Not many surprises, most anticipated Louisville first with UC and Rutgers the top contenders to dethrone them. Of course, I'll give the same speech here I do every year at this time. Pay as little attention to these polls as possible. How many years when the Bearcats won four outright or shared titles were they ranked first in the preseason? None.
|Year||UC Poll Pick|
All that said, Memphis will be terrible. Believe that.
--- Dan spoke with Brendon about all things clambake and anticipation of today's Media Day questions. DH also points out Kay participated in the Manning passing academy this offseason. It's a collection of the top 30 QBs around the country. Amazing how much life has changed for Kay in less than a year. More than halfway through last season he was a backup quarterback riding out his senior year seemingly into a frustrating obscurity. Now, he's throwing with the top QBs in the country and being instructed by the Mannings.
Perhaps we've come across time to start thinking about Kay not as much as in a battle within his own team, but a battle among quarterbacks nationally. Unfair? Maybe.
How many returning quarterbacks reeled off four of five games to close last season with at least 61 percent completion, at least 240 yards per, 10 touchdowns and two or less interceptions?
- Tajh Boyd, Clemson? No. Seven picks.
- Teddy Bridgewater? No, tossed one pick in each of his last four games.
- Aaron Murray? No. Twice completion percentage less than 55 percent
- Marcus Mariota, Oregon? No. Twice under 175 and twice less than 57 percent.
- Brett Hundley, UCLA? No. Twice under 52 percent, three picks.
- AJ McCarron, Bama? No. Three picks, twice under 175 yards.
- Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M? Almost. Had three picks in last five games.
Debate however you'd like about difficulty of opponent or if stat-twisting is going on, we only have five games to weigh how Kay played and his numbers compared with the best in the country and his team only lost one game.
--- Because I love the word extrapolate and the calculator app on my phone, let's extrapolate Kay's numbers out over the course of a 13-game season.
Totals: 226 of 360 (63 percent), 3,375 yards, 26 touchdowns, 5 interceptions.
Who can claim hitting all those watermarks last year?
Colby Cameron (La. Tech). That's it.
Those numbers are rather unfair, particularly the five interceptions but you get what I am getting at here? In a game where the quality of your quarterback relates directly proportional to your success the Bearcats could have one of the best around.
--- Also, a recap of the lobster, with Buj, Jordan and Greg discussing how much food they will put down. And DH goes back to his TV roots with the standup over top of the plate. And I have no doubt those went down smooth and in mass.
--- Random observation: The cover photo on the American Football Twitter page is the Bearcats entering the 2008 Orange Bowl.
--- Have to love the retrospective on the 2008 team from Bill Koch at The Enqy. Great to hear from all the old players who permanently changed the direction of the football program.
--- Want to hear what Commish Mike Aresco said Tuesday morning. Here you go. Highlights worth earmarking: If the power five plans on attempting to break off from the rest of football, he fully expects The American to be a part of that.
"Whatever the highest level of football is, we expect to be a part of it."
--- Randomness ...
--- One of my favorite movie scenes is from Barbershop when the women busts up a car with a baseball bat thinking its her cheating boyfriend's, only to be some old man getting a lined up for a cut. She just takes off running when she realizes. This isn't quite that, but the whatever this dude did his lady wasn't real fond of it.
--- Brian Williams rapping never gets old for me.
--- Sam Elliot on Parks and Rec can only result in genius. That also means by my own personal law, I must link to Sam from The Big Lebowski.
--- Southwestern Oklahoma's new helmets appear to be made for use in a tree stand on a deer hunt.
--- Going with The Who today and I shouldn't need a reason why.