Welcome to our weekly discussion amongst The Ralphie Report's staff. Same format as last week, so dig right in.
Feel free to throw your answers to the same questions into the comments below.
1) What do you feel will be the most important match up this weekend when the Buffaloes are on offense?
Bob: Against Cal, I said the Buffs CB's against the explosive Cal WRs was the matchup to watch. Quickly, we learned it was all about how the big guys play up front. For me, it is how Colorado's offensive line deals with the speed of the Georgia defense. CU did not respond well to a quicker, smaller California defense a couple weeks ago. Hopefully, we see improvement in that department.
David: Our Offensive Linemen against the Georgia Linebackers. They are an athletic bunch, and it will be a good test of our Linemen if they can find those guys at the second level when blocking for the CU Running Backs. I think they can handle the Georgia Defensive Line, but if they don't lock onto those smaller guys past the LOS, our Running Backs won't find any room to run. And we know what that does to our offense.
Jon: The Buffalo offensive line against the Georgia defensive line. We all saw what happened in Berkeley when the o-line played one of the worst games I have ever seen and we all saw how we can have a real bona fide offense when our line plays like it did in the second half of the Hawaii game. If the line can play like that again, or how they played against Nebraksa last year, I can see this offense moving the ball enough to win the game. Of course, that is relying on...
2) What do you feel will be the most important match up against Georgia when the Buffaloes are on defense?
Bob: Fortunately, Georgia is having some issues on the offensive side of the ball which bodes well for a Buffs defense who has been playing well already (Georgia Ranked 80th overall on offense, Colorado comes in with the 7th ranked rush defense, 40th overall). The key for me is controlling the line of scrimmage. Georgia gives up 2.5 sacks a game, 6.5 tackles for loss and has the 86th ranked rushing offense. Keep Georgia struggling at the point of attack and I like Colorado to keep this one close.
David: Easy Answer? Smith & Brown vs. A.J. Green. But I'm going to go with the CU pass rush vs. Aaron Murray's confidence. If we can rattle the Redshirt Freshman QB, the Georgia Offense won't be effective. He will stop looking downfield and his accuracy will drop.
Jon: ... our secondary's ability to stop AJ Green. And I do mean stop. If he is able to get a big catch on the first or second drive of this game it will really ignite the Bulldogs. Jimmy Smith and Jalil Brown have the ability to play with Green (they better if they want those NFL paychecks), but he is the best receiver in the country for a reason and these two are going to have to play an pretty special game to shut him down.
3) After starting the season at 1-3, a lot of talking heads have claimed that this is a must win game for Mark Richt. How would you feel about Richt if you were a Bulldog fan?
Bob: Be careful what you wish for, that is all I have to say. A 90-31 record, no less than 8 wins ever since he has been there. 7-2 in bowl games. Two conference titles and two additional division titles in nine years.
David: Yes and no. If he loses to us, he's in trouble. Losing to CU isn't a good thing these days. If he beats us, it won't save his job, because we're 'just' CU right now. This game isn't incredibly important though. He will keep or lose his job based on the rest of their conference sked.
Jon: This one is kind of hard for me. Richt has consistently keep the Bulldogs very competitive and near the top of the heap in the SEC, but he has really only had one or two really good seasons. That being said, he still has the best overall winning percentage in Georgia history. I think this may be a case where the team just needs a fresh face. I think Richt has done a good job in a tough division and there is a huge risk that the successor may fall on his face, but in college football, fans want championships in year 2, not year 10.
1) If the season ended today, who would be your top 3 Heisman candidates?
Bob: As much as I dislike Michigan - Denard Robinson, Andrew Luck, Cam Newton. A few years ago, we were talking about Dennis Dixon being the Heisman frontrunner until he got injured. Have to love Robinson's ability outside the pocket but I can see a similar thing happening to Robinson like Dixon. Has there been two more impressive teams than Stanford and Auburn? We knew Luck would be good but Newton has really emerged and led a tough Auburn team to victories. We will see about Newton and this Auburn team when they have to travel on the road. Both big wins have been close ones at home.
David: In no particular order: D. Robinson of Michigan, D. Thomas of K-State & C. Newton of Auburn. Seriously
Jon: Kellen Moore, Denard Robinson, Cameron Newton. Sorry Pryor, I said the season ended today.
2) BCS of playoff. What do you want? If you want a playoff, how would you structure it?
Bob: Probably a Plus One but not much more than that.
David: I would love a playoff, but there's no good way to structure it. Remember, these guys are full-time students, and it would be really expensive for the schools to be figuring out travel last-minute. There's no way to really make it work.
Jon: BCS. A lot of people look at me like I am crazy when I say that. I like the sport the way it is. Every single college football weekend is an event. Every loss is season ending. Every win is one step closer to a championship. We have bowl games for almost a month and a half and we bitch about the BCS rankings for the entire season. I love it. It's perfect. Who wants to complain about who is going to get the eighth seed?
3) Give me the final scores:
- Miami @ Clemson
- Virgina Tech @ NC State
- Wisconsin @ Michigan State
- Oklahoma vs Texas
- Stanford @ Oregon
- Florida @ Alabama
- Miami @ Clemson 23-22
- Virgina Tech @ NC State 13-21
- Wisconsin @ Michigan State 27 - 17
- Oklahoma vs Texas 40 - 10
- Stanford @ Oregon 55-54
- Florida @ Alabama 17-34
- Miami @ Clemson 37-14 Miami
- Virgina Tech @ NC State 27-14 NC State
- Wisconsin @ Michigan State 33-29 Wisconsin
- Oklahoma vs Texas 24-9 OU (this would make for a very happy Jon)
- Stanford @ Oregon 27-24 Oregon
- Florida @ Alabama 48-14 Alabama
- Miami @ Clemson 27-31
- Virgina Tech @ NC State 13-20
- Wisconsin @ Michigan State 24-17
- Oklahoma vs Texas 31-17
- Stanford @ Oregon 38-41
- Florida @ Alabama 10-24
1) If I told you that you could turn back time and attend (with some kick ass seats and whatever other amenities you can dream up) three sporting events of your choice (the results of the contest would not change) over the last 5 years (starting January 1, 2005) what three would you have chose?
Bob: 2005...give me one back to the 90's. Broncos first Super Bowl win against the Packers would be one. Elway, 13 point underdogs, beating Favre, dominating fat Gilbert Brown, Terrell Davis fending off migraines and still killing the Packers, "This One's For John" speech...glorious. Unfortunately, my three teams - the Broncos, the Buffs and the Irish - have struggled to say the least over the past five years unlike Jon's teams (Steelers, Mavericks, Penguins, Sooners). Those teams have been defined less by winning and more about the drama/off the field (Brandon Marshall, Jay Cutler, Mike Shanahan, Darrent Williams for the Broncos / the scandals, Darrell Scott committing and then transferring, Dan Hawkins).
I do have to say I felt lucky being at the Rockies v. Padres Play in Game where Holliday scored the winning run gashing his chin on home plate. The big sporting event I want to go to is the Masters or Ryder Cup, seems like a nice little party if you ask me.
If I had to pick one game that sticks out in memory that I would have loved to have been at, it would have been Gonzaga vs. Michigan State in 2005 in the Maui Invitational. Yes, many probably won't remember it off the top of the head but what a game that was. With my little brother going to Gonzaga, I sort of lived vicariously through him when college hoops was in session. I remember watching that game in my dorm room at college amazed. Gonzaga, eighth-ranked, finally took down 12th-ranked Michigan State, 109-106, in a three-hour, three-overtime semifinal game. Adam Morrison put in 43 points in 52 minutes, dropping three pointer after three pointer. Michigan State guard Maurice Ager answered every Morrison dagger with 36 points himself. It seemed like it would never end and it was pure greatness only a couple weeks into the season. Plus, when you got done with that game, you could walk outside and be on the beach. Not bad.
Since Woods has had amazing sports success with his teams over the last five years & I have not, I try to make sure to take him down a notch when this sort of stuff comes up. September 29, 2007 Colorado 27 Oklahoma 24. Hawkins beats Bradford. Hawkins beats Stoops.
David: In no particular order:
Boise State vs. OU Fiesta Bowl. That was just an awesome game.
Olympics '08 (That's 'one event,' right?)
'05 Nat'l Championship game
Jon: It's a bit easier for me to do these since I am the one that writes the questions. Therefore I can kind of have the answers in mind as I write them. On this one I didn't plan ahead and I spent a ton of time thinking about it. I couldn't do 3, so I just went with five. So sue me.
1) Penguins @ Red Wings - June 12, 2009 - Stanley Cup Finals. Game 7. One of the most intense televised sporting events I have ever seen. The last two minutes, with Fleury holding off the Red Wings barrage of shots as they tried to tie the game is one of my favorite moments in sports. The night was fantastic as it was as Bob, his brother and I celebrated with shots and unnecessary bar hopping, but I can't imagine what being there must have been like.
2) Mavericks @ Spurs - May 22, 2006 - NBA Western Conference Semifinals. Game 7. Something about a great game seven obviously resonates with me as I have two of them before my favorite NFL team winning a Super Bowl. But I remember watching this game vividly. I was by myself, pacing and yelling for the entire 4th quarter. I'm pretty sure I fell on the floor and threw my full beer when Dirk's 3 point play (after nearly blowing a 20 point lead and a 3-1 series advantage) sent the game to overtime.
3) Steelers @ Colts - January 15, 2006 - AFC Divisional Playoffs. Pretty interesting that my top three are all road games. I guess that's ok when you are a transient like myself. I watched this one at the bar at the top of the Keystone gondola. After being ridiculed by Colts fans the entire game, the few other Steeler fans in the bar were sharing congratulatory high fives as the Steelers were about to put the game away. Then Bettis fumbled and we went deadly silent until Ben made "the tackle" and we erupted in relief. This is a game I will tell my grandkids about.
4) Padres @ Rockies - October 1, 2007 - The Play-in game. This one I was actually at. The most amazing sporting event I have ever attended. 9-8, 13th inning. You know the rest.
5) Steelers vs Cardinals - February 1, 2009 - Super Bowl. No need to go over this one. An incredible game. I just got a slight bit depressed realizing that there most likely won't be a better sports year in my life. Steelers Super Bowl, Penguins Stanley Cup, Sooners National Championship appearance (got to go to that one). Whoa.