ACC Football

September 15, 2006

Showdown Saturday

Tomorrow is Showdown Saturday. There are seven games that feature AP Top 25 teams going head-to-head. Teams from seven conferences plus Notre Dame will take part in those games. For some odd reason (or perhaps because it's the best game on ABC tomorrow), ESPN College GameDay is headed to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for the Nebraska-USC showdown, even though it was voted as the 3rd most popular game this week in an ESPN user poll. I suppose they didn't want to hype a game on CBS (LSU-Auburn) or NBC (Michigan-Notre Dame). It's a shame that they can't go to a better game though. Anyway, here are the games with my score picks (with rankings in parentheses):

(2) Notre Dame 21 - (11) Michigan 20
(3) Auburn 15 - (6) LSU 9
(12) Louisville 27 - (17) Miami 24
(18) Oregon 31 - (15) Oklahoma 17
(20) TCU 38 - (24) Texas Tech 31
(4) USC 42 - (19) Nebraska 21
(7) Florida 20 - (13) Tennessee 14

September 12, 2006

Week 1: Notre Dame 14 - Georgia Tech 10

I returned from Atlanta over a week ago, but haven't found the time to make this post until now. I was extremely nervous for the first 59 minutes of that game, much longer than I thought I would be. Georgia Tech has quite a defense. Quinn looked very shaky, especially in the first half. But the Irish came away with the W, which is all that matters. Here are some photos from what I call Marathon Saturday.

6:58 a.m. EDT — College GameDay Set. Three hours til live:
College GameDay set on Georgia Tech's campus

10:17 a.m. EDT — Buzz gets a bit close for comfort:

11:42 a.m. EDT — Touchdown Jesus in Atlanta (I'm the one holding it up):
Touchdown Jesus on GameDay in Atlanta

11:51 a.m. EDT — I make an appearance on ESPN:
Jimbo on GameDay in Atlanta

5:19 p.m. EDT — Inflatable Buzz in front of Bobby Dodd Stadium:
Inflatable Buzz

5:57 p.m. EDT — Brady Quinn departs ND's team bus:
Brady Quinn gets off bus at GT

6:12 p.m. EDT — Me with Touchdown Jesus mockup:
Jimbo with Touchdown Jesus Mockup at GT

7:19 p.m. EDT — Bobby Dodd Stadium from section 214, row 33:
Bobby Dodd Stadium before kickoff

11:32 p.m. EDT — Final score, Notre Dame 14 - Georgia Tech 10:
Notre Dame 14 - Georgia Tech 10

11:43 p.m. EDT — Bobby Dodd Stadium after the game:
Bobby Dodd Stadium postgame

November 08, 2005

Bruins, Hokies Go Down

UCLA's luck finally ran out on Saturday as they showed up in Tucson unprepared and unmotivated and got absolutely blown out by Arizona, 52-14. It was one of the most lopsided games I've ever witnessed, and that's saying something considering it was the 2-6 team beating up on the 8-0 team. UCLA had overachieved all season; Arizona had underachieved. And finally on Saturday afternoon in Tucson, the tables turned. I made the 500-mile roadtrip from Los Angeles to witness it.

Sign shows that I'm closing in on Tucson

Here comes the prey.

UCLA takes the field

As you can see, it was a beautiful afternoon for football. It may be November, but in Arizona, it was mostly sunny and a high of 84 degrees. And since it was homecoming and there was an undefeated team in town, the stadium was nearly filled to capacity, which isn't bad when your team is 2-6.

Arizona Stadium

It wasn't even halftime when this thing started to get really ugly. The Bruins couldn't move the ball. The Wildcats couldn't be stopped.

Scoreboard: Arizona 28 - UCLA 0 with 10:08 in second quarter

The guy carrying this flag probably started cramping up by the fourth quarter.

UofA flag

Meanwhile, about 3,000 miles to the east, Miami completely shut down previously unbeaten Virginia Tech, the opposite of what I had predicted. It was not the Hokie defense, but rather the 'Cane D that made the big impact on this game as Miami rolled to a 27-7 win. The Hurricanes pressured Marcus Vick all night and made him look absolutely mediocre, as he finished 8-of-22 for 90 yards, 0 TDs, and 2 INTs.

We started with five. Now we're down to three: USC, Texas, Alabama.

November 05, 2005

Week 10: GameDay Picks

Heading into week 10, the standings are:

Jimbo 6-3
Kirk Herbstreit 5-4
Lee Corso 5-4

This weekend, the College GameDay crew is in Blackburg, Virginia for Miami - Virginia Tech. Today is the day for the Hokies to make a statement if they want to have any say in the BCS title picture. Corso's got the 'Canes in a mild upset; Herbstreit's got the Hokies. I'm also taking Virginia Tech in this one. Their defense clamps down and stuffs Miami.

Jimbo's Pick: Virginia Tech 20 - Miami 10

September 24, 2005

Week 4: GameDay Picks

After all picking Florida State last weekend, the overall College GameDay pick standings are as follows:

Jimbo 3-0
Kirk Herbstreit: 2-1
Lee Corso: 1-2

This week, the GameDay crew is in Blacksburg for the Tech War between Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. Both Corso and Herbstreit are picking the Hokies this week. Corso even donned the vintage Hokie gobbler head.

Jimbo's pick: Virginia Tech 38 - Georgia Tech 31

September 17, 2005

Week 3: GameDay Picks

In week two, both of the ESPN GameDay analysts lost by picking the Buckeyes. I was correct in picking the Longhorns. The standings are as follows:

Jimbo 2-0
Kirk Herbstreit 1-1
Lee Corso 0-2

This week, we're all picking the Seminoles to knock off the Eagles.

Jimbo's pick: Florida State 13 - Boston College 6

September 07, 2005

Vick Stars in ESPN's Broadcast

Vick certainly stood out on ESPN's broadcast of the Virginia Tech - North Carolina State game on Sunday night. The problem was that it was the wrong Vick. ESPN made current Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael the main attraction, taking the spotlight away from younger brother Marcus' performance as VT's quarterback in an entertaining 20-16 Hokie victory. For some reason or another, ESPN thought it was necessary to show Michael's reaction to just about every single thing Marcus did. Fans tuning into the game saw more of Michael than they did of either head coach, NC State's Chuck Amato or VT's Frank Beamer.

Viewers also got to watch Michael's every step up every single row of the stands as he made his way out of the stadium. I've SportsCenter wrap up an entire game's worth of highlights in less time than they allowed for us to watch Michael exit the building. It was excruciating! Why they had to incessantly focus on the former VT quarterback is beyond me.

During his brief halftime interview, sideline reporter Stacey Dales-Schuman even noted that Michael was hesitant to give the interview because he didn't want to take the spotlight from his brother; after all, his brother Marcus was the one who was suited up. Despite his efforts, Michael did steal the spotlight, thanks to Rod Gilmore, Trevor Matich, and the ESPN game producers. But why would ESPN choose to focus on Michael Vick as much as they did? Hmm... the Atlanta Falcons wouldn't happen to be playing on parent network ABC's first Monday Night Football game, would they?

Seems like some Hokie fans grew tired of the over-the-top hype as well. Although some thought at the very least, it could help recruiting. Check out this thread over at

September 05, 2005

Kicking Woes, O-Line Ruin Canes

Well I certainly didn't think that the 10-7 halftime score would hold up. I expected Miami to be able to move the ball effectively against the Seminoles in the second half. But a school record nine sacks given up by Miami eventually proved too much. Quarterback Kyle Wright looked very good on the Canes' final drive of the game, completing eight of ten passes for 98 yards during the 18-play, 81-yard drive that ended in a botched field goal snap on fourth down. During the drive, the Canes converted four of five third down plays after going 0-for-10 prior to this possession. All four third down conversions were passes from Wright to standout tight end Greg Olsen for gains of 15, 17, 26, and 6 yards. Expect this duo to connect a lot this season.

But in the end, the Seminoles were victorious, mostly because of what had cursed them throughout the history of this series, the kicking game. But tonight, almost in Yankees-Red Sox fashion, the tables had finally turned: Miami's Jon Peattie missed two field goals in the first half of 48 and 39 yards and then in the last minutes of the fourth quarter, holder Brian Monroe dropped the snap on what would have been a 27-yard attempt from the left hash mark; conversely, Florida State's Gary Cismesia nailed a 37-yard field goal in the first quarter and his 26-yard miss in the third quarter will never come back to haunt him.

Unimpressive was Miami cornerback and punt returner Devin Hester, the subject of much Deion Sanders-inspired hype on ESPN before the game. It would have been difficult to put up a more disappointing performance: Hester finished with three yards on one punt return and two muffed punts. He also failed to field at least one punt that he certainly should have, costing the Hurricanes valuable field position in a tight game.

Miami vs. Florida State at the Half

Florida State leads visiting Miami 10-7 at halftime. But the way I see it, the Noles are in big trouble. They're winning this game so far because of special teams and having capitalized on Miami quarterback Kyle Wright's first interception. Unless Miami continues to make foolish mistakes, this trend will not continue. Wright looks as though he's settling into a good rhythm and his halftime passing statistics (5-of-13, 96 yards, one TD, two INTs) would look much better had there not been so many dropped balls (at least three that should have been caught). Hurricane running back Tyrone Moss looks like he could break one big at any moment, having already rushed for 93 yards on 17 carries in the first half. On the other side of the ball, however, Florida State has been completely anemic in the passing game, with Drew Weatherford completing 3-of-12 for 14 yards and one INT. I wouldn't be surprised if Miami begins to run away with this one in the fourth quarter as Wright and his receivers start to connect for big gains.