Thursday, September 06, 2012

Catching up annexes Gainesville

An unfortunate ending for Brandon Jenkins: Some not-so-good news for Florida State:
Florida State defensive end Brandon Jenkins will miss the entirety of the 2012 season with a Lisfranc injury to his left foot.

Jenkins left Saturday's game in the first half after a teammate stepped on his left foot. Trainers worked with Jenkins on the sideline, and he was able to walk to the locker room under his own power.
Ouch. Jenkins is/was one of the two or three best defensive ends in the country; he was a preseason All-Everything according to everybody after putting up eight sacks as a junior and 13.5 as a sophomore. He's legit. He's also probably done with his college career since he's a senior this year and would've been a first-round pick last year if he'd have bailed early.

That said, the hit to Florida State's defense will be less severe than it would be for almost anybody else's defense just because of FSU's absurd depth at defensive end. Bjoern Werner also was a preseason All-ACC dude (he had seven sacks last year) and had a ridiculous four sacks (!!!) in the opener, and former juco transfer Tank Carradine will take over Jenkins' starting spot after putting up 5.5 sacks in not-insignificant playing time last year. So Jimbo Fisher's comment the other day ...
"Tank's not really a third defensive end. They're 1A, 1B and 1C."
... wasn't entirely coachspeak. BTW, there's also Mario Edwards, ESPN's No. 1 overall recruit last year who didn't play against Murray State but could have his redshirt pulled off if necessary. Depth (especially five-stars-everywhere depth) is fun.

Upshot: Florida State probably won't lose a game specifically because of Jenkins' injury; they'll lose a game because of a lack of consistent productivity on offense (pending James Wilder Jr. becoming unstoppable) against the non-Murray States of the world.

Maybe Taylor Martinez can really throw now (lol): Rex Burkhead has a knee sprain of debatable severity that might keep him out for a few weeks or might keep him out not at all. The former sounds more likely given comments such as this from likely replacement Ameer Abdullah ...
Hopefully he has a speedy recovery," Abdullah said. "You never want to see someone like that go down. I've got to make the most of it. I've got to run the ball for my team. I'm probably going to be the anchor on Saturday, so I've got to step up."
... and this from Bo Pelini:
"You're thinking about the season and, obviously, not only the future of the team but Rex's future."
So yeah: Abdullah is probably the main guy for the next couple weeks. He's fast and a pretty excellent kick returner but isn't big; he's kinda the anti-Burkhead. The alternatives are former big-time recruit Braylon Heard, who's somewhat similar to Abdullah in terms of running style/ability, and 225-pound freshman Imani Cross.

As for relevance, Nebraska plays at UCLA this week, which might actually be an interesting game since UCLA appears to be offensively competent with Brett Hundley running the show. If Nebraska can get past that one, though, Burkhead will have some time to heal: The next couple games are against Arkansas State and Idaho State, so he won't really be needed til Wisconsin comes to Lincon on September 29.

Calling experienced receivers to Aisle Blacksburg: Virginia Tech wideout Danny Coles is done for the year:
D.J. Coles will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury, the school announced Thursday. Coles hurt his right knee in the first quarter in an overtime win over Georgia Tech on Monday night and did not return to the game.

Coles will be eligible to apply for a medical hardship waiver for an additional year of eligibility. He has not redshirted, so if the waiver is granted, he will be able to return for a fifth season in 2013.
First things first: Coles was one of Va. Tech's three returning receivers with any meaningful experience (albeit not starting experience), the others being Marcus Davis and Dyrell Roberts. Coles and Davis each had about 30 catches for 500 yards last year as the third/fourth guys on the field behind the since-graduated Jarrett Boykin and Danny Coale, whereas Roberts averaged about 20 catches a year for his first three seasons before missing all but the first game last year with a broken arm. With Coles out, the guess here is that Va. Tech just goes with more two-receiver sets since the two guys at the top of the depth chart represent minimal drop-off. The options for a third guy: redshirt freshman Demitri Knowles, whose first career catch the other night was for a 42-yard touchdown, and former Kansas transfer Corey Fuller, who had five catches for 82 yards in the opener and would seem to be the likely starter on the outside in three-wide sets.

Secondly, I'm not sure the above note about Coles needing a medical waiver is correct. My understanding is that a player who hasn't taken a redshirt can just take one if needed, medical or otherwise, although Coles might not be able to do so since he appeared in a game rather than just sitting out the entire year. Regardless, he should be back next season, and his loss this year won't be devastating since Va. Tech has basically already clinched the division title.

An intriguing assessment: This is Missouri defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson's totally reasonable response when asked about playing Georgia this week:
“It's old-man football. (Georgia) has got a Heisman candidate at quarterback. OK. So we're going to get some and do what we're supposed to do. We create our own pressure. That's it, man. Don’t nobody put pressure on us. We come out there for every game. We do what we're supposed to do. If we execute, nobody in this league can touch us. Period.”
Uhh ... dude. DUDE. You went 8-5 last year. You lost to Arizona State, got obliterated at home by Oklahoma State and beat Miami (the one in Ohio) by 11. Y U CRAZY?

Georgia by 20? Maybe. Alabama by 30? Definitely.

Speaking of which: Somebody associated with Texas A&M has a bunch of money and likes to use said money to put up super-obnoxious and houty-touty billboards:

As for the former claim, Vanderbilt would like a word. As for the latter ... ummm ... right. Vanderbilt would like another word.

It's early: I would just like to point out that Boise State, Michigan, Houston, Hawaii and Washington State are among the bottom 20 in the country in scoring offense. I'm guessing that won't last.

On a related note: Florida State opened with Murray State and next plays Savannah State, which lost 84-0 to Oklahoma State last week. Legitimate question: Why? Isn't one FCS sacrificial lamb sufficient? Ughghgh rabble rabble real games rabble. BTW, the one sports book that actually lists FBS-against-FCS lines has Florida State as a 70.5-point favorite (!!!!!), which is allegedly the largest line in the history of ever. Great googly moogly.

Of course: Washington is contractually mandated to play at LSU this Saturday. Obvious preparatory strategy: Bring a live tiger to practice. Seriously.

I was gonna make a witty remark here but got don't have to since Mike Leach is awesome:
"I think it would be impressive if they let that tiger out of the cage," Leach said. He had another idea though. "The other thing they could have done was they could have stuck a husky in there with that tiger and let that husky outduel that tiger inside that cage, and that would send a message to everybody."
Mike Leach is awesome.

Read this thing: Penn State will probably be terrible this year (and next year and the year after) but also will be pretty interesting, which makes this following-the-coaches-around thing from ESPN worth a read. BTW, it's always a good idea to give the media tons of access ... right? RIGHT?

NO WAY: I am shocked and appalled:
The University of Oregon is implementing random drug testing of all its athletes following a media report earlier this year that estimated from 40 to 60 percent of the football team smoked marijuana.

Oregon's previous drug policy allowed for testing when there was reasonable suspicion. A recent decision by the general counsel gives temporary permission for random testing effective this month.
I have nothing to add here.


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