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Hawktober


MEMBER SINCE   August 01, 2016

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Comment 15 Jan 2020

From top to bottom, this looks like a pretty accurate top 25.  We may feel like we played better than a 15 ranking, but as already said, it's tough to argue against the teams above.  Auburn might be the exception for me, but they have that 'Bama win to buoy them up (even though that should be worth less this year than other years).

Comment 27 Dec 2019

29 points = 5 FGs and 2 TDs?  That would surely be an impressive way to snag the single-season FG record for Mr. Duncan.

Comment 26 Dec 2019

For me, the biggest thing a win does is give the program it's first win in California for decades (and my memory).

For Nate, it's a chance to offset his statistical downturn this year and maybe boost his draft stock a little bit.  Other guys have a similar opportunity (AJE, if he leaves, for example).

For the team (including Nate and others above), it's an opportunity to play against a program that has been nationally relevant during their formative years, travel to a place where they probably haven't visited before, and spend more time with each other.

For Kirk, it's a chance to continue his bowl win streak and experiment with a tighter bowl prep window.  Also, it's a chance to really see how the young guys have progressed and give them some more time to get better.

Go Hawks!  Let's kick some Trojan butt and get revenge for the 2002 team.

Comment 26 Dec 2019

I went over the rankings in depth before writing in a comment to a prior post a week or more ago.  It would take a lot of stars aligning perfectly (including a VERY convincing win over USC) for this team to end up in any top 10 ranking.  The playoff poll isn't re-done after the bowls are over, so the rankings you're quoting above aren't even going to help us.  We are only going to see post-season AP and Coaches polls.  We're at 19 in both, so there are just too many teams ahead of us for the top 10 to be worth hoping for. 

We can note that one chip already fell our way with Boise losing, but there are too many other games among the top teams that even an explosion of upsets won't help us too much.  The "right" upsets would have to happen.  In fact, we'd have to cheer against many of the B1G teams, as they make up a large chunk of the teams between us and the top 10.

Comment 16 Dec 2019
I'm expecting MSU to win that game, which I believe would be the first win by a road team in B1G conference play this season.
Comment 13 Dec 2019

My thoughts on the broadcast:

1. It was weird having Dakich slobber over our guys (especially Garza) for a change.  That dude goes too far sometimes.
2. I hope ESPN picks a better spot for their microphone next time that isn't right next to a young lady screaming and yelling "rebound" every time a shot was missed.  Maybe that's on ISU for requiring the mic to go in a certain place?  Either way, I was glad that we were leading the whole game to reduce the screaming.

Comment 13 Dec 2019

He's still young and showed a tendency to push a little too hard at times (leading to 2 or 3 straight turnovers), but I like his attitude and what he brings to the floor.

Comment 13 Dec 2019

Officially, Nunge will be RJr, but he would have the ability to appeal for a medical hardship waiver after the 21-22 season when his eligibility is officially used up.

With that roster, I'd have to assume one or two of the freshmen will redshirt (maybe both of the Murrays?).

Comment 09 Dec 2019

I think it's relatively easy to explain.  The committee has stated that a huge component of their rankings is resume.  Looking at our schedule and seeing our close calls against three highly-ranked teams and our win over another, plus the ISU road win (they've been at the fringe of the rankings all year) gives us an argument to say we belong.  However, the voting polls are based on whatever criteria each voter wants to use.  And I would wager that most of the voters vote based on "who is better" as much as "who has performed better".  Some of them probably just rank teams based on "who would beat who".  This isn't wrong, but it is much different from ranking as a committee based on merit.  Look no further than Alabama being ranked a lot lower by the committee to see how this plays out opposite to our own situation.  Alabama has beaten no one, but has a couple of close losses.  So they get placed a few spots ahead of us by the committee, even though the voters all recognize that Alabama would be favored against most other teams and therefore get ranked top 10.

Comment 09 Dec 2019

TLDR version:
It's very unlikely we could reach #12 in the voters' polls.  Getting to a theoretical #12 in the committee rankings might be possible from a #16 starting point, but the committee doesn't do a final ranking, so that's not going to help.

Full version:
Here are the teams ranked above us in AP/Coaches with rankings and bowl opponents.  I stopped at Alabama/Auburn because I don't think we're likely to catch anyone above them, based on my guess of current voter opinion as well as the stature of their opponents.

Alabama 9/9 - Michigan 17/17
Auburn 9/13 - Minnesota 16/16
Wisconsin 11/11 - Oregon 7/6
Utah 12/10 - Texas UR/UR
Penn State 12/13 - Memphis 15/15
Notre Dame 14/14 - ISU RV/RV
Memphis 15/15 - Penn State 12/13
Minnesota 16/16 - Auburn 9/13
Michigan 17/17 - Alabama 9/9
Boise State 18/18 - Washington RV/UW

Rooting interest guide to get us to #12:
With a convincing Holiday Bowl win, I think it's possible we surpass the loser of Memphis/PSU regardless of winner.  However, we should probably cheer for PSU to be safe.  The Minnesota/Auburn game is similar, though we should cheer for Auburn to be safe.  Michigan/Alabama is similar as well.  Due to perception, I think Alabama would stay ahead of us with a loss, so we should probably root for them to be safe.  This is despite the fact that a 3-loss Alabama would have its best win be a 7-5 Texas A&M (full Alabama schedule analysis below).  So at this point, we have three games that would possibly need the "right" team to win, but which would help us move up three spots.  Wisconsin could pick up their fourth loss against Oregon, which could be enough to get us ahead of them, despite head-to-head, so we should root for Oregon.  That leaves Utah, ND, and Boise playing teams outside the top 25 (some are receiving votes).  Wins by Texas, ISU, and Washington should drop each of those three below us.  Along with Wisconsin, that's four more teams that could drop below us, with a total of 7 all together.

Conclusion:
If every game goes exactly as I detailed it above, we could jump to #12 in both the Coaches and AP polls, but that relies on only the biggest upsets happening and none of the ranked teams beating those above them.  This doesn't seem likely.  Also, it relies on most of the B1G teams losing, which might be enough to devalue our schedule to the point of costing us some voters' confidence.  So that might be counterproductive.

Alabama's schedule this year:
The combined record of the teams they beat this year is 47-73.  Of those 47 wins, 12 were against FCS teams.  Every FBS opponent played one FCS team and Alabama's own FCS opponent, WCU, went 3-9.  The two very good teams they played this season beat them in close games, but that's a WEAK schedule overall.