Friday, September 13, 2013

5 comments Gregg Easterbrook Thinks Chip Kelly's Blur Offense Will Revolutionize the NFL Until It Doesn't Anymore

Gregg Easterbrook has written before about the Oregon Ducks' blur offense under Chip Kelly. Now that Kelly is the head coach of the Eagles, Gregg feels the need to become a part of the group of writers to who want to make a knee-jerk reaction to one regular season game's worth of seeing Chip Kelly's offense in the NFL. Gregg wants to know if the offense can hold up over an entire season at this pace, so I'm assuming he will announce the Blur offense can't hold up once the Eagles have a bad game. This week Gregg also criticizes head coaches and does his usual second-guessing of play calls and act of misunderstanding that television shows are not supposed to exactly portray reality. 

TMQ is reporting on an exclusive basis that during the first half of the Washington-Philadelphia game on "Monday Night Football," Chip Kelly shouted into the Eagles' helmet radio, "Mr. Sulu, engage warp six!"

You are awful. I feel like this needs to be gotten out of the way at the very beginning of the column.

The dramatic debut of the Kelly offense was helped by Robert Griffin III looking, in the first half, like a guy who had to skip the preseason. As RG III's play improved in the second half, the Eagles became steadily more human.

It's funny what can happen when the opposing team possesses the football on offense for a long time. It's almost like the Blur Offense doesn't fix everything and the Eagles still have to play defense.

Still, Philadelphia was able to run 77 plays, while switching to quick-snap tactics in the second half allowed Washington to run 70 plays, versus the league's average of 64 plays per team per game in 2012.

It's fine to run a lot of plays in a game, but the key point is these plays have to be successful for the offense to be successful. It's not like the Redskins started running plays faster and then automatically they play better. The Redskins had to use quick-snap tactics while also continuously picking up first downs.

Snaps are not normally a stat that football fans follow -- perhaps this year, they will be. On Sunday, New England staged a remarkable 89 snaps, though any stat compiled against the pitiable Bills comes with an asterisk.

Gregg, the Bills came very, very close to beating the Patriots on Sunday. The Bills are historically pitiful, but they weren't pitiful on Sunday. 

And snaps are no guarantee of success: Jacksonville snapped the ball 70 times and scored two points Sunday.

That is exactly what I just wrote after Gregg typed,

Still, Philadelphia was able to run 77 plays, while switching to quick-snap tactics in the second half allowed Washington to run 70 plays, versus the league's average of 64 plays per team per game in 2012.

which made it sound like the Redskins got to run more plays which led to their success when in fact it was the success of these quick-snap plays that led to the Redskins success.

Will the Eagles be able to sustain their Blur pace? NFL teams play more games than NCAA teams, and don't get the month of December off to recover.

True, but NFL players are also in better physical shape than college football players at the NCAA level.

NFL defenders are faster and hit harder than college defenders.

Again, I just wrote this and it seems like a fairly obvious statement. At this point Gregg is just churning out words and rambling in the hopes he can fill the space required in the introduction to TMQ and in the hopes his readers will actually believe he is writing something of substance.

Inevitably, Philadelphia will need to adjust as NFL defenses learn to counter what Kelly does.

And then Chip Kelly will adjust to what the NFL defenses do to his offense and therein lies whether Kelly will be successful in the NFL. As much fun as it would be to judge Kelly's success in the NFL after one game, and over the past 72 hours sportswriters really have enjoyed trying to do this, it is premature to do after only one game has been played.

Philadelphia did much of its damage by rushing against a backed-off defense that was focused on preventing long gains. Kelly's Oregon offense ran up the middle more than generally realized;

Gregg means the Eagles ran up the middle more than those who don't watch college football generally realized. Anyone who had watched the Oregon offense over the past several years knows the Ducks ran up the middle a lot.

Last season, Stanford held Oregon to 14 points by taking away up-the-middle run lanes. NFL defensive coordinators will learn to do this to the Eagles, and that will bring the Blur under control.

Why didn't the Redskins just think of taking away the up-the-middle run lanes? It was as simple as that. Here the Redskins were just leaving the middle of the field wide open and all they had to do was take away the up-the-middle run lanes, since after all the Eagles don't use offensive linemen and it's not like the Eagles would try to block the Redskins so McCoy/Brown could run up the middle. We all know neither McCoy/Brown nor Mike Vick have the speed to adjust and run to the outside. Gregg views the NFL in very basic terms like Tecmo Bowl. Gregg thinks if the Redskins just covered the middle of the field better, the Eagles would have lost and could not have adjusted their game plan accordingly.

But for the early part of the season at least, Philadelphia should be one of the most entertaining football teams in many years.

Well, at least until NFL teams start putting defensive players up the middle of the field and then Chip Kelly's offense is screwed and they won't be able to run the ball.

But when a defense sells out to stop someone or something, other options are offered. Kaepernick stood in the pocket like Bart Starr and threw for 404 yards -- see more on this game below. The season begins with quarterback rushes from the zone read a major concern. If defensive coordinators focus on tactics that contain the zone read, NFL wide receivers are going to be happy fellows.

That's assuming the quarterback can throw the football when the defense doesn't feel as concerned about that quarterback using the read-option to set up play-action. Of course, I guess that isn't a big concern for Gregg, or at least doesn't seem to be.

In other football news, Peter King of Sports Illustrated and NBC Sports has decided he will stop using the franchise name "Redskins," shifting instead to "the Washington team." TMQ has been on this bandwagon for a decade, and it's nice to have company on a bandwagon. (Some sousaphones would be nice, too.) King's decision shows he listens to his conscience. The world would be a better place if more people with insider status listened to the voices of their consciences.

Well, my conscience says to use the name "Redskins," so I'm very confused as to what that means (stabs a piece of Amur Leopard meat using the tusk of an elephant sitting on a plate made of rhino skin and then throws the napkin he was using down on the ground where it will take 50 years to biodegrade).

TMQ's Super Bowl pick is San Francisco over Denver.

Make sure you don't fall while out on that limb, Gregg.

Unless my pick is New England over Atlanta -- the Flying Elvii just ran up 431 yards of offense using volunteers from the audience at the receiver positions.

Oh yes, multiple Super Bowl picks from Gregg and I'm betting he will claim he was right if any of these choices end up being correct.

Maybe my pick should be Jersey/A -- the last time the Giants opened with a loss at Dallas, they went on to hoist the Lombardi.

Why doesn't Gregg just cut the crap and pick every NFL team to win the Super Bowl? 

Sweet Play of the Week: Defending champions Ravens leading 7-0 in the opener, host Denver lined up with two wide receivers right and little-known tight end Julius Thomas standing up right in the suddenly popular "flex" position.

If this were 2005 then maybe calling the "flex" position suddenly popular would make more sense. Otherwise, it doesn't make sense because the Colts used Dallas Clark in the flex position for years and this isn't the only circumstance over the last five years of an NFL team using a tight end in the flex position. I'm pretty sure Kansas City used Tony Gonzalez in the flex position and I know the Chargers have done the same thing over the past 7-8 years with Antonio Gates. So I'm not sure it is suddenly popular.

The touchdown was Thomas's first in the NFL. A collegiate basketball player, he lasted until the fourth round of the 2011 NFL draft despite having strikingly similar athletic abilities and background to Jimmy Graham, selected the previous year and now one of the league's top performers.

Comments like this make me want to bang my head against the wall repeatedly. So NFL teams should have known that Julius Thomas (who is in his third NFL season and had one reception over his first two seasons) would be like Jimmy Graham because both played basketball and football in college? Not every college athlete who plays basketball and football will turn into Jimmy Graham. Thomas has six career receptions in three NFL seasons while Graham has 215 receptions over his first three NFL seasons, but yes, NFL teams should have known how similar Thomas was to Graham.

Not to mention, Jimmy Graham wasn't one of the best tight ends in the NFL when Julius Thomas got drafted. Graham had just finished his rookie season and had 300+ yards receiving, so the expectation for NFL teams to say "Hey, you know that Jimmy Graham guy who most likely will turn into one of the best tight ends in the NFL but you need to be able to predict the future to know this, maybe Julius Thomas will end up being like him. So let's draft Julius Thomas based on the fact he played basketball and football in college and will end up like one of the best tight ends in football, Jimmy Graham, who is a player we don't currently know will end up being one of the best tight ends in football" is ridiculous.

What's up in outer space? Not as much as expected. In the 1968 movie "2001: A Space Odyssey," by the year 2001, there are colonies on the moon, commercial flights to orbit, and NASA has built a giant ship bearing a crew to Jupiter. In this spring's Tom Cruise flick "Oblivion," by 2017, NASA has built a giant ship bearing a crew even farther, to Saturn. Nothing remotely like this is on anyone's drawing board, let alone funded.

You mean a movie where 5-foot-7-inch tall Tom Cruise is an action hero isn't realistic? That's just crazy to hear.

Barack Obama announced a plan to use an automated spacecraft to capture an asteroid, then drag it to orbit around the moon, there to be studied by astronauts. The idea sounds interesting, but doesn't have any clear relationship to preparing a defense against space rocks -- 

You know, other than the plan to capture the asteroid and prevent it from hitting Earth.

Building a defense against space rocks would take at least a decade and cost at least dozens of billions of dollars, would not involve the manned flights that make for dramatic TV footage, and might result in systems that are never used.

Well then we definitely shouldn't worry about building a defense against space rocks then. After all, if it takes at least a decade to build the defense then it's pointless since asteroids and space rocks will email NASA 20 years before striking Earth just as a warning to us. It's not like large space rocks pose a threat or anything.

The asteroid capture plan would require a new heavy-lift rocket unimaginatively called the Space Launch System, with roughly the power of the old Saturn V. Dull names are a symptom of the lack of vision at today's NASA.

If NASA used a fancy, creative name then Gregg would accuse NASA of spending more time caring more about the name of the rocket than making sure the rocket was functional.

SLS is the dumbest rocket name ever. How about calling it Artemis? She was the sister of Apollo.

Right, because calling it Artemis is just a fantastic name. Let's call it the Easterbrook and then offer Gregg a chance at a one-way ticket to visit the Easterbrook in space.

NASA doesn't want to build an asteroid defense because such a system would have no role for astronauts. Mars travel? Way too expensive to be practical. The agency is so adrift it has started claiming space spending is for jobs creation.

As usual, I'm not sure Gregg read the article he has linked. The article describes how outsourcing parts of the space program could help create jobs in the private sector.

Paying people to dig holes and then fill them creates jobs, too; space subsidies are an inefficient way to stimulate the economy, since unlike bridges or subways, space dollars have no multiplier effect.

Entirely possible, but the point of the article was that outsourcing some of the transportation could help create jobs in the private sector. I'm not sure paying people to dig holes has a multiplier effect either though.

StubHub World: The day of the NFL opener, the cheapest seat on StubHub for the monster Atlanta at New Orleans pairing was $138. Seats at the laugher Kansas City at Jacksonville contest -- teams a combined 4-28 last season -- could be had for $14. That's below face value: owners of Jax seats were taking a loss to be rid of them.

Since Gregg is all economist-y and all, I'm sure he realizes that the cost for the Jaguars season tickets is a sunk cost (yes, there is a joke in there), so these season ticket holders are taking a loss on the seats but are getting $14 for the seats rather than getting $0 for the seats. So in a situation of a sunk cost, it's not especially egregious to take a loss on the seats. I'm sure Gregg realizes this of course, because he's super-smart.

Boosters and the sports press fixate on game performance, avoiding the issue of the education that big universities are supposed to be providing to football players to justify their indentured status.

When discussing sports, then yes, the topic of game performance is going to be the dominant part of the conversation.

Monday's noon "SportsCenter" led with 12 minutes -- a long time in live broadcast terms -- on Texas allowing 550 rushing yards in a loss at BYU. This was spoken of as some kind of calamity. The calamity in the Longhorn football program is that in the most recent year, 46 percent of African-Americans graduated. That was not mentioned.

This was not mentioned because "SportsCenter" is a show about sports. As stupid as "SportsCenter" and ESPN can be at times, it would be even dumber for analysis of the Texas football program to include some statistics on the graduation rate of the Texas football players. Gregg can't seem to understand the point of "SportsCenter" is to show highlights of sports and discuss sports, not discuss graduation rates. He somehow expects the "SportsCenter" anchors to sit behind the desk and lecture us on helmet safety while showing video of a Jadeveon Clowney hit or expects a discussion from a college football analyst on the Texas defense to also include a discussion of the graduation rate of African-Americans on the Texas football team. It's not the purpose of the show. Don't be willfully ignorant.

True, most of the college football audiences only want exciting games. But that is no excuse for universities to accept tax exemptions and public subsidies, then stage NFL Lite contests without educating players; nor any excuse for the sports press to treat rushing yards allowed as a scandal, but say nothing about graduation rates.

It's not the job of ESPN's college football analysts to discuss graduation rates. Why doesn't Gregg start a network or a television show on ESPN where he discusses a college football team's performance on the field as it pertains to that team's graduation rate? Gregg works for ESPN, so he should go try and do it. If Gregg wants to discuss graduation rates, talk to his boss at ESPN about getting this done.

In the most recent Super Bowl, San Francisco gained 468 yards, scored 31 points, and lost. This season, TMQ will track the 500 Club -- teams that have put up spectacular offensive stats, and lost.

No, it's okay, you really don't have to do this.

During the 1930s, Rep. Louis Ludlow, Democrat of Indiana, campaigned for a Constitutional amendment that would vest the power to initiate war in a national referendum.

Gosh, as much as I enjoy the thought of the American people voting on such an important issue in the perfectly reasonable, non-emotional, and logical way I know they would vote...I think this vote should be left to those people the American people elected into office to make these decisions. This is a representative democracy after all.

In 1938, the proposed amendment drew 209 votes in Congress. One of the objections to Ludlow's plan was that a national referendum would take months to administer -- perhaps too long if events were pressing. Today using electronics, such a referendum could be put together in days. If the American public could vote on bombing Syria, what would happen? Last week the Pew Research Center found 29 percent support for yet another war.

I'm all about Americans voting for things, but issues like this I feel like should be voted on by those we elect into office to make the decision. I realize Congress doesn't really care to do any work and would love to not have to make a decision on Syria by allowing the American people to vote on the issue, but that's not how I think this should work.

I'm surprised Congress hasn't tried to push the vote on whether to go to attack Syria onto the American people. It would help Congress avoid a touchy political issue and could help them avoid the blame if it all goes bad.

Buck-Buck-Brawkkkkkk: The Bills entered their opener on an incredibly lame 3-25 streak versus New England. Trailing the Patriots 10-0, home crowd roaring, Buffalo reached fourth-and-2 on the Flying Elvii 44 -- and punted. You don't need to know anything else about the game.

Actually you do need to know something else about the game. The Bills led 21-17 going into the fourth quarter and it took a game-winning drive from Tom Brady for the Patriots to beat the Bills. I like how Gregg just glosses over the fact the Bills almost won this game because he wants his readers to think not going for it on fourth down in this situation was the very reason the Bills lost the game. Gregg tries to lie and mislead his readers. He does it constantly and this is a great example of him misleading and lying to his readers. The only reason Gregg would say we don't need to know anything else about the game is because if we learned anything else about the game we could find out he is full of shit.

NFL teams average around 5 yards per offensive snap; possession of the ball is far more valuable than field position; so why do NFL coaches order punts on fourth-and-short?

The bottom line is simply writing "NFL teams average around 5 yards per offensive snap" and then wondering why teams don't go for it on fourth down while assuming that team will pick up five yards is faulty reasoning. NFL teams should go for it on fourth down more often, but the statistic that rules in this case and determines whether going for it on fourth-and-2 is what the league-wide average gain on fourth-and-2 is. Gregg is using a 5 yards per offensive snap for information to be used in a situation-specific instance. What NFL teams average per offensive snap isn't applicable to fourth-and-2.

To shift blame. If a coach goes for it and the try fails, he is slammed by the sportsyak world; if a coach does the "safe" thing, orders a punt and the team loses, the players are blamed. 

Sometimes coaches also try to play field position and by punting the football he is telling his defense that he trusts them to stop the opposing offense and give their team's offense better field position.

Going for it tells the players their coach is challenging them to win; launching a punt tells the players their coach is trying to hold down the margin of defeat.

Couldn't punting in a fourth-and-short situation also be challenging the defense of that team to stop the opposing team? Of course not, because Gregg hasn't thought about it this way before.

In Sunday's action, Buffalo did the "safe" thing with the punt and lost.

Yes, but the Bills were winning the game for most of the fourth quarter while this punt happened early in the game.

Atlanta leading 7-0 at New Orleans, the Saints faced fourth-and-1 on their own 47. New Orleans went for it and failed -- a slow-developing play with no misdirection. But Sean Payton sent his team the message that he was challenging them to win, and they did.

Yes, that's exactly why the Saints won. It's because Sean Payton challenged his team to win the game early by going for it on fourth down. Of course, Gregg earlier in TMQ stated the Falcons would have won the game if they had run the ball on the goal line instead of passing four times. Here's what Gregg wrote:

So what happened? Four passes -- incompletion, short gain, incompletion, interception.

On the final play, fourth-and-goal from the New Orleans 3, the Saints were so certain Atlanta would go pass-wacky that they put just two defensive linemen and a dime on the field. In the middle, Atlanta had five blockers opposing three defenders. Matt Ryan could have called a sneak and walked into the end zone. Instead he was deep in the shotgun, forcing the pass into double coverage.

So not shockingly, Gregg is inconsistent in stating why the Saints won and the Falcons lost. Gregg states the Falcons would have won if they had run the ball (or if Matt Ryan had scrambled for a touchdown), but then he states the Saints won because Sean Payton challenged the Saints to win by going for it on fourth down. The idiocy of Gregg's fourth down logic can be seen here. If the Falcons had run the ball and won the game as Gregg suggests, why would then would the Falcons have lost the game if the Saints won the game due to Sean Payton challenging his team to win it by going for it on fourth down? Shouldn't the Falcons have had no chance to win the game using Gregg's logic? After all, the Saints were challenged and responded by winning the game. So the Falcons never even had a chance to win since the Saints were so pumped up after being challenged by Sean Payton.

In reality, we know if the Saints had lost then Gregg would not have brought up that Sean Payton went for it on fourth down or stated the Saints lost because Payton went for it on fourth down and didn't use misdirection. There is always a horseshit reason given as to why Gregg's theories don't always work. All I ask is that Gregg stops misleading his readers and stops trying to pretend he is spouting hard-and-fast rules when it's obvious he is just taking specific events that happened during a football game and tries to attribute them to the outcome of the game using hindsight.

But Baylor showed poor sportsmanship. Leading 63-10 in the fourth quarter, coach Art Briles still had his team throwing passes, frantically trying to run up the score. A host team that runs up the score on an opponent that obviously has no chance is not behaving honorably. Baylor faithful should be embarrassed by this game, and also forewarned -- the football gods will exact vengeance.

Of course Gregg had no issue with Pulaski Academy going for it on fourth down late in the game by refusing to punt, thereby running up the score on their opponents.

Yet another remake of "Godzilla" is in the cards, along with yet another "RoboCop." How stupid does Hollywood think audiences are?

Well, if anyone from Hollywood reads TMQ then they would see that audience members named Gregg Easterbrook are stupid enough to expect science-fiction movies and television shows to accurately reflect reality.

Then Gregg begins criticizing the realism of "Under the Dome" for showing the wind blowing and having too many abandoned buildings.

There are no longer soldiers or police officers stationed outside the dome -- Chester's Mill is forgotten. If an impenetrable dome mysteriously appeared over an American town, would the government really lose interest after five days? 

Probably the government would lose interest. After all, the government would be too busy tallying votes from United States citizens on whether the United States should attack Syria or not.

By having the outside linebackers contain rather than pinch toward the quarterback, Green Bay showed that the zone read can be stopped dead in its tracks. But corners and safeties were so worried about not letting Kaepernick get outside that they let him throw over their heads. Several of Boldin's 13 receptions came on broken plays where Boldin simply looked for an opening in the secondary, then turned around and waved;

When the Packers became concerned about stopping the zone read they also didn't get as much of a pass rush in certain situations on Kaepernick. It's not that the corners and safeties were so concerned about stopping Kaepernick, it's also that they can't cover the receivers forever. At a certain point a quarterback scrambling around will find an open receiver if he's not under pressure and that's often what seemed to happen in this game.

Both Green Bay and San Francisco averaged 6.6 yards per offensive snap: the key to the game was that the Niners ran 17 more plays, while Kaepernick did not throw an interception.

The key to the game was also that the 49ers had the football for 38 minutes during the game. It's easy to run 17 more plays when you possess the football for 63% of the game.

Yet though Weeden was performing poorly, Cleveland coaches radioed in 59 passing plays versus 13 rushes.

Chud! I would take him over Mike Shula, but he does love to pass the football.

Nine undrafted rookies made the Browns, including seven late-summer waiver-wire acquisitions. Normally TMQ roots for the waived or undrafted. But as yours truly has pointed out, despite one of the league's weakest rosters, during the April draft, Cleveland banked choices till 2014 rather than use them now. That left space on the Browns' roster for players other teams did not want. A bad team doesn't improve by banking draft choices.

This is hilarious. Normally TMQ roots for undrafted and waived free agents but when a team doesn't play very well with those undrafted or waived free agents then a team has way too many of these players. As always, Gregg remains as inconsistent as ever when championing the cause of undrafted players. A team should want these hard-working, lowly-paid players on their team, but they don't want too many of these players. After all, undrafted and unwanted players are great, unless they aren't great. Just ask Gregg after the season is over and he can tell you exactly how many and which undrafted/unwanted players each NFL team should have signed.

Denver used aggressive defensive tactics, keeping six or seven men on the line of scrimmage, big-blitzing on third-and-long. By the second half, the Broncos' front was noticeably outperforming Ravens offensive linemen. Bear in mind -- big-blitzing usually works early in the season and fails late.

Bear in mind, this is a statement that Gregg Easterbrook has made while providing zero factual backing that he isn't just simply pulling this non-factual based statement out of his ass. This is the luxury of your readers having low standards for you or simply trusting that whatever you write must be correct.

Welker's early second half touchdown came off a two-receiver "combo" move, a standard football action, yet Baltimore defensive backs looked confused. Welker's second touchdown came when he ran a short combo to the other side, and the other side of the Baltimore defense looked confused too.

They weren't confused, it's just hard to stop a pass from being completed when the receiver runs a great route and has the ball thrown to him by a Hall of Fame quarterback.

The entire Ravens defense looked awful on the 78-yard hitch screen touchdown to Demaryius Thomas that iced the contest. Now would be a good time for the Baltimore defense to panic.

You mean like last year when the Ravens and John Harbaugh were in a panic after firing Cam Cameron so that Harbaugh could shift the blame for the Ravens' eventual playoff loss to Cameron and off of himself? How did that work out again?

You'll be reading a lot this week about how the Eagles staged 77 plays on Monday night using their Blur Offense. Houston staged 75 plays the same night, though the reason was that the Moo Cows' defense forced San Diego into four three-and-outs and a turnover in the second half.

Apparently it is all about running the most plays. Who ever could have thought that time of possession is an important part of football...other than the dozens of other NFL coaches who have preached time of possession over the past 30 years of course.

At New Orleans, early on, a Saints' defender was flagged for unnecessary roughness. The home crowd booed lustily, though the call was correct. Perhaps there's a little residual hostility regarding Sinnersgate.

Or perhaps home crowds boo any penalty called against their team.

The Football Gods Chortled: Jacksonville lost 28-2 at home to Kansas City, which was last season's worst club. Remember, Jacksonville is the team that's too good for Tim Tebow.

Or they don't want to expose themselves to the madness that having Tebow on the roster involves. Right now, every NFL team seems to be too good for Tebow.

In addition to writing Tuesday Morning Quarterback for ESPN, Gregg Easterbrook is the author of "The King of Sports" and eight other books, and is a contributing editor of The Atlantic. His website is here and you can follow him on Twitter here. Every Tuesday during the football season, at 3 p.m. Eastern, he will answer questions on Twitter about that day's column.

That's interesting considering if you go to his Twitter account it doesn't appear he answered any questions on Tuesday. Not that Gregg would ever mislead his readers of course. 


Anonymous said...

"Today using electronics, such a referendum could be put together in days. If the American public could vote on bombing Syria, what would happen? Last week the Pew Research Center found 29 percent support for yet another war."

I think I want somone with a security clearance to review all of the classified information we can glean from Syria to then make an informed decision/vote. So let's just release all of that to the general public so they will have all the info they need....

BJ said...

Couple of things (among oh, so many) that stood out. One is just Gregg being Gregg - "dozens of billions"...why can't he just say "tens of billions" like everyone else. Don't know why that bugs me so much...long day.

Also, my Dad went to Baylor so I follow them, and they had basically all backups in at that point. If all you're going to do is run the ball every down, up by 53, what's the point of playing anymore? Not a fan of running up the score, but shit...

ZidaneValor said...

The calamity in the Longhorn football program is that in the most recent year, 46 percent of African-Americans graduated. That was not mentioned.

Being a half-black college graduate myself and having experienced just how few black men were actually on my campus (especially for my Software Engineering major), I feel Gregg should know that 46% is much higher than the national average of 35% for black males (black females graduate about 45-50% depending on the study I read).

That's the one point I never hear people decrying these "low" percentages about. College football also allows men who couldn't have afforded college any other way to attend.

Anonymous said...

"A collegiate basketball player, he lasted until the fourth round of the 2011 NFL draft despite having strikingly similar athletic abilities and background to Jimmy Graham, selected the previous year and now one of the league's top performers."

Gregg just can't let his I'M SMARTER THAN EVERYONE attitude get out of the way. For a tight end out of Portland St. with limited football experience, being drafted in the 4th round is really good. Gregg seems to think he should have been a first round pick. And he bases that opinion on one good game. Julius Thomas, up until last week, had done literally nothing in his NFL career. In fact, I'd be willing to bet Gregg didn't know who he was until last Thursday night (or Friday morning, watching highlights).

Bengoodfella said...

Anon, that is very true. Americans would be voting based on incomplete information or information they may not have complete access to knowing. Probably not the best way to have a national referendum.

BJ, dozens of billions is a weird way to say what he is trying to say, no doubt about that.

I tend to agree with you. I'm not a fan of running up the score either, but another part of me understands if the backups are in the game then the opposing team is just trying to give these guys some burn and not force them to just down the ball or run it.

Zidane, the 46% is a low number, but that's a good point that it isn't terrible in perspective with the general figure you quoted. I guess that's always been my retort when Gregg brings up this number. Yes, it is low, but how many of these college athletes would go to college and have a chance to graduate without sports?

Anon, Gregg doesn't think about the other college basketball players/part-time football players who didn't get drafted and didn't make an NFL team. The 4th round is a pretty high draft choice for such a guy and it took Thomas three years to even start producing for the Broncos. How many NFL teams spend a 4th round pick on a position player and then can wait three years for him to start to produce? That takes a certain amount of patience.

Gregg is annoying when he solely uses hindsight to make a point. Where was he in 2011 saying teams should draft Thomas or even mentioning Thomas prior to the previous week's game?