Monday, August 15, 2005

College Football Preview: Pac 10

USC has been the king of college football and dare The Man say established a dynasty. True, it's a weak conference overall, but it apparently hasn't made a different as evidenced by the domination top teams in the National Title game for the past 3 years.

Pete Carroll might have been a mediocre at best NFL coach, but his recruiting and coaching skills are what separate this program from every other in the country. Given their depth, including the return of Matt Leinart at QB and Reggie Bush at RB, their coaching staff losses might be the only thing stopping them from a four-peat.

The Man's Pac-10 Picks:

1. USC - too much talent, not enough competition in-conference

2. Cal - A near score away from upsetting USC last year, look for another 2nd place finish in '05.

3. Arizona State - top running back in jail, early game @ LSU. Play both Oregon and USC at home this year.

4. Oregon - Disappointing year in '04, Coach Bellotti revamped his staff and gets Cal and USC at home.

5. UCLA - Improved team last year, look for that improvement to continue into a bowl appearance this year. Play three of four ranked teams at home.

6. (tie) Oregon State - Beat the teams they were supposed to in '04, lost to good opponents. Look for that trend to continue. Creampuff opener against Portland State, then No. 19 Boise State at home. Plus they finish the season against rival Oregon on the road.

6. (tie) Arizona - Look for Mike Stoopes to continue to turn this program around. Beating ASU at the end of '04 was amazing and their recruiting class was in the top 15. Unfortunately, most freshman aren't impact players so look for a sub-.500 overall finish.

8. Stanford - New coach, new system, old ways - a losing season.

9. Washington State - The end of a great 3 year run was last year. Time to rebuild.

10. Washington - It's going to take more than a new coach and one season to turn this program around.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005

College Football Preview: Big Ten

If you know anything about college football, it's that the Big Ten appears to be stacked this year and their logo sucks (11 schools, Big Ten, you do the math). Living in Big Ten country, The Man doesn't want to seem homerish by saying a Big Ten school will win the National Title (which they won't). With that much competition, it's going to be hard for any of the top tier Big Ten schools to finish undefeated. Scheduling will play a huge factor that will help determine the rankings.

1. Michigan - Early test against Notre Dame at home, games at Iowa and Ohio State will determine who's #1 in this conference. RB Hart is a stud, defense promises to be more aggressive especially against mobile QBs (Michigan State, Texas, Ohio State QBs ate them up on the ground). Always find a way to at least tie for a Big Ten title.

2. (tie) Iowa - Kirk Ference has done a great job with this programm, legit top 10 team with returning QB (Drew Tate). Question mark comes on offensive line (most sacks allowed in conference) and mental mistakes (penalties, in particular).

2. (tie) Ohio State - stellar defense with a mobile QB could lead to a good season for OSU, early test with Texas and of course final game against Michigan will make or break their season.

4. (tie) Purdue - they get Iowa at home but have to travel to Minnesota. Tiller always has his boys ready to play, however the QB position isn't as solid as last year. Easy schedule might see them move up to a 2nd or 3rd place finish in the conference.

4. (tie) Minnesota - prove you can play with the big boys and you could move up the ladder -- STOP SCHEDULING PATSIES!

6. Michigan State - Mobile QB Drew Nietzel has the ability to win games; he almost upset Michigan last year by himself. Defense a question mark, however The Man can't recall a John L. Smith team that had a good defense. Look for a track meet and bet the over on most MSU games.

7. Penn State - Creampuff non-conference schedule that will have people buzzing about JoePa's Lions. Unfortunately a rude awakening when they enter conference play and have to compete against D-I talent.

8. Wisconsin - last year's bunch overachieved, this year looks like a rebuilding year for Barry in Madtown. Potential for early losses to Bowling Green and UNC.

9. Northwestern - Brutal schedule (five top 18 teams), spread offense could provide for an upset.

10. Illinois - Hasn't been competitive since the 1990s, no turnaround in sight.

11. Indiana - Yet another basketball school waiting for the season to start.

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Wednesday, August 10, 2005

College Football Preview: ACC

The Man kicks off his 1st College Football Preview on The Man Blog by shining the spotlight on the now 2 division ACC. True, the ACC is known as a basketball conference, however the addition of Miami automatically raises the bar for the rest of the ACC schools and the conference as a whole. An overall comment on the ACC and the national title race - no ACC team will win the ACC title this year. Sorry, but there's no way

The Man's Atlantic Division final standing predictions

1. Boston College - The Man's sleeper pick to upset FSU for the inaugural Atlantic Division title
2. Florida State - Who's the FSU QB again? A great defense, sure, but no offensive leader.
3. Maryland - A respectible year expected to make up for last year's disappointment.
4. Clemson - Tommy Bowden pulled off a miracle to win against Dad, don't look for more than a .500 conference record this year.
5. NC State - Amato's corny sunglasses, lack of talent, just not happening for NC State.
6. Wake Forest - The bottom of the Atlantic barrel, the Deacons don't have the experience or talent to compete.

ACC Coastal Division predictions
1. Miami - Reloaded, restocked and ready for a run at a national title. Didn't have a lot of draft picks to replace relative to prior years. Question mark at QB could mean a slip into second place in this division.
2. Virginia Tech - Marcus Vick is back, which is good, but he also spent a year off the field - not good. Much like his brother, his ability to put the team on his back and carry them is as far as they will go.
3. Georgia Tech - Good, young QB in Ball who is a difference maker. Not enough firepower to compete with the big 2.
4. Virginia - too many starters missing to compete against the big boys.
5. North Carolina - Being a basketball school hurts this program. Too inconsistent to win in this conference.
6. Duke - Devils fans don't measure the season in wins and losses, only "Saturdays remaining until basketball season".

ACC Championship Game: Miami over BC

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Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The Man's College Football Preview coming soon!

The Man's NCAA College Football insider will be posted this week, starting Wednesday - stay tuned! We're talking about The Man's look at College Football, conference by conference with conference champion predictions and NCAA champs. Why pay top dollar to get someone else's take when you can get The Man's for free?

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Monday, August 01, 2005

The Man's Guide to Back Injuries

As you may've noticed, the Man has been absent from blogging for a month... A bulged disc will do that to you. The Man, like most men, has chronic back problems and had to rest from the computer to let that bad boy heal up. Some tips from The Man to dealing with and recovering from back injuries, Man style:

1. Drugs

The Man doesn't advocate taking prescription drugs unless they're completely necessary. If you read the labels closely, they don't actually heal the problem and cause unnecessary damage to your liver and kidneys. If you're going to do that, you might as well enjoy a buzz while you're at it. So The Man prescribes his medication in the form of 12 ounce curls. Take 2 every half hour until the pain is gone. Sure, you're destroying your liver, but if you follow The Man's guide to hangovers a little B complex will help minimize the amount of liver damage... Plus it's a lot more fun!

2. Exercise

Some white coats will recommend that you relax and "take it easy" while you're in pain, the slowly work your back into shape. The Man says that's a load of crap and you should avoid exercising all together -- how did you hurt your back in the first place??? Exercise!!!

3. Insurance

The Man thinks insurance is probably the biggest scam on the face of the earth. So if you're going to pay into it, you might as well milk it for all you can. Get a note from your doctor and play hookee from work for a few extra days. Go fishing. Catch a ball game. Try to set a world record for most beer consumed in 12 hours. Just don't get caught!

4. Sex

It's unrealistic to think that a man isn't going to want sex, even if his back hurts. Hell, The Man's wanted it after getting kicked in the groin, so a little back pain surely won't deter him. So here's The Man's advice: Insist on being on bottom, and tilt your hips slightly to show some signs of movement (you're also working your abs and lower back, so it's a win-win-win!). Note: A real man lets her do all the work anyway!

5. Getting back to work

When The Man gets back to work, he tries to get as much out of his time off from the cube as possible. Don't be afraid to make others do what you don't want to do -- remember, you're recovering!

And when telling co-workers how you injured your back, take a cue from The Man and be manly about it! Feel free to use one of these scenarios:

"I was power lifting 450 pounds and I heard this 'SNAP!'. The entire gym turned to look at me and I felt my legs go numb. I finished my set before dropping the weight and calling an ambulance."

"I went on one of those porn star cruises, and while having a three way with Kobe Tai and Jenna Jameson in the hot tub of the poop deck, I heard someone screaming for help. Ron "The Hedgehog" Jeremy fell overboard and was drowning, so I jumped in to save him. I grabbed the Hedgehog and swam him to safety, only after fighting my way out of a shark's jaws."

"My neighbor was changing the oil on his car and I heard a crash, so I put down my High Life and ran outside, only to see him covered by his '82 Olds Ninety Eight. I grabbed the bumper, lifted the car up and slid him out with my foot. That's when I pulled a muscle in my back."

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