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Buckeyes Buckeye Archive The Furls Preseason Craptacular
Written by Mike Furlan

Mike Furlan
It's the opening Saturday of the college football season, which means it's time once again for the Furls Preseason Craptacular.  This is by no means your typical season preview.  Furls doesn't make bold predictions based on incomplete depth charts and historical trends.  He keeps it light, keeps it fun, and tells us how he thinks this college football season will unfold.  Furls prediction track record has been great these last three years, and I hope he's on the money again this season.

Everyone else gets to have a national preseason preview, why not me?  The difference is that I am not going to make bold predictions based on incomplete depth charts and historical trends.  I am going to have a little fun the same I way I like my mixed drinks, at someone else's expense.   

Most Overrated Team:  West Virginia.

This award is generally reserved for the Fightless Irish, but this year the national media finally caught on (it only took about 15 consecutive bowl blow outs and a 3-9 season) to the fact that Notre Dame just isn't that good at football anymore and left them unranked.  Kudos to them on this one. 

I know that there are going to be a lot of Big East Conference games this year and someone will have to win them, but is that alone enough to base a #8 ranking?  Apparently it is.  The pundits have recently admitted to considering a team's schedule in their rankings and in doing so they have proven exactly why polls are garbage, because they are voting for the teams that they think will lose the least instead of the best teams.  Isn't a ranking supposed to rank teams on how good they are?  I guess not.

Most Overrated Conference:  Big XII

I thought about going with the SEC (Speed Exaggerated Conference), simply because no team/conference could ever live up to the hype, but I am really tired of getting incomprehensible broken English spam in my email box.  That is why I have to go with this year's media darlings the Big XII.   

I get that Mizzou and Oklahoma look tough, but who really thinks that Kansas has turned the corner is now a perennial powerhouse?  The sportswriter types should read that disclaimer on the back of your mutual fund prospectus, "Past performance is not indicative of future results."  Who here really thinks that Texas Tech will play enough defense to be relevant?  Wasn't Nebraska losing by like 73, 475 points per game last year?  Better hope Bo Pellini smuggled some SEC speed out with him Husker fans.  I am not saying that the Big XII is not good, they are just nowhere close to the SEC this year. 

In the past I beat up on the Big Least, afterall that conference has been so bad that it has done what over 100 years of football could not do (make Rutgers relevant), but the media has caught on, maybe USF and Cincinnati really aren't the football powerhouses that we all thought they were.  

Most Disgustingly En Vogue Dark Horse Pick:  Clemson.

Did I miss something, isn't Terry Bowden still the coach in Death Valley?  Sure, go ahead and point to recruiting rankings and "talent," all I have to do is point to every game that Clemson has under delivered on in the last decade.  How about Georgia Tech last year for starters.  The Ramblin Wreck was so bad that they fired Chan Gailey, ironically Bowden kept his job.  I get it, someone has to win the ACC (and the Big Least, MWC, and Sun Belt), but that does not mean that it is a good team. 

BYU is a close runner up for this award.  Boise State's big win over Oklahoma has been a mixed blessing for college football.  It proved that it is possible for the little guys to win against the big guys, but it also caused the BCS to feed the Hawaii Warriors to the Bulldogs last year.  The worst part is that the pundits are now obsessed with finding the next mid major that might clear its terrible conference unscathed so the networks can have an outside shot at good drama while putting on an exhibition of "fairness" in the BCS system.  So as long as BYU can withstand the rigors of the MWC schedule and a couple of nonconference games against PAC-10 bottom feeders they can earn the right to be the squishy, gooey substance on the bottom of some national power's Jack boots.  Congrats and wish you guys the best on that one.

Sumo Match, Weis vs. Mangino

I gotta take the "well rounded" Kansas coach over the "Guru" in this one.  Mangino is not just a better coach than Weis; he is also more spherical.  As a matter of fact, I bet if he drew a porn star mustache on his bare ass no one would even be able to tell if he was upright.  Just remember coach Mangino, weebles wobble but they don't fall down.  You are going to have to push Charlie out of the ring to get that point.

Number of Rivalry Games Michigan Wins:  0

I am calling it now, Rich Rodriguez drops all three of Michigan's rivalry games (ND, MSU, OSU) this year en route to a terribly disappointing season.  Michigan fans will have plenty of time rationalize it at next year's Hash Bash between spirited debates on the meaning life and the age old question, Twinkies or Doritos (Doritos of course).  The real question this year is how bad is tolerable for Michigan fans. 

Hottest Hot-Seat:  Kirk Ferentz.  Honorable Mention:  Terry Bowden

Ferentz has only been underdelivering for about four years, but this season the hot seat should heat up enough to fry his ass.  College football fans will tolerate a lot of misconduct if their team is winning (see Hurricanes, Miami), but if the team is not winning, well, the fans will begin to frown upon something like 18 arrests in the last 16 months.  The real question here is will the university actually fire him and eat his $3.4 million dollar per year contract.  I am guessing NO.  He is a guy, like Charlie Weis, who will be saved by his ridiculous contract and the embarrassment that eating it would cause.  Seriously, Kirk Ferentz makes 3.4 mill/year to win half his games! 

The Heisman Trophy

I succumbed to peer pressure and made a Heisman prediction in spite of the fact that we have no idea who is going to tear an ACL in their last practice, but whatever.  The obvious pick is Tim Tebow, he is obviously pretty good and is probably just going to get better, but I am going to take Graham Harrell.  Texas Tech plays no defense and that should help his cause immensely.  All Harrell did last year was throw for 5,700 yards, 48 TDs, with just 14 Ints in over 700 attempts, for a measly 158 passer rating.  Ironically, I can already hear the "System Quarterback" screams from Gator fans. 

Game of the Year:  Ohio State vs. USC.

This game is an All Star game in a sense.  There are going to be at least 5 first team All Americans in the game and at least 10 players on the field at all times that will play in the NFL.  If you like watching talent this is the game.  What is interesting is that I think the game will be very low scoring.  This game is a must win for the Buckeyes to play for a national title in a third straight season.

National Champs:  Ohio State

Third time is a charm, right?  I think so.  The '06 title game was a lesson in complacency and self satisfication.  The '07 title game was a gift for a team that was too young to capitalize on it.  The Buckeyes self-destructed every chance they got, and frankly, looked like a raw team that wasn't quite ready for the spotlight.  All I know is if they lose one more title game they will run the risk of becoming this generations first losers, like the Buffalo Bills. 

Conference Champs: 

Big Ten: Ohio State. 

Big XII:  Oklahoma 

Big East:  West Virginia 

ACC:  Virginia Tech 

PAC 10:  USC 

SEC:  Florida

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