Going off the reservation

Most of you know that for the most part I try to be respectful when dealing with our rivals or our detractors. There is usually nothing to be gained from ad hoc personal attacks but today I am going to do just that and I am going to make it brief.

Tim Brando and Verne Lunquist are idiots...

Brando's comments in regards to USC running up the score on Washington St. and Lundquist's subsequent agreement not only show bias, which I can deal with, but also shows, as supposed experts, that they do not have the capacity to do the basic due digiligence in covering their sport. Yes, it would appear that SC ran it up but even the least informed person who paid any attention yesterdaycould have deduced that that was not the case.

As always Adam Rose breaks it down succinctly. (I am taking most of the post)

There was a bit of post-game talk about USC piling it on. And perhaps you could argue that's true, because USC didn't agree to play with their shoes untied. Otherwise, it seems a bit tacky that CBS' Tim Brando would say the Trojans were running up the score. Verne Lundquist didn't disagree. I do.

Here's why, in rough chronological order:

  1. Joe McKnight didn't suit up. Sure, he had turf toe, but he said earlier this week that he would have played if this game wasn't against Wazzu. He later took it back, but we all know better.
  2. With the ball in the redzone, USC ran out the clock to end the half. The first half.
  3. Starting quarterback Mark Sanchez stopped throwing the ball with 32 minutes left in the game (translation: first half). He was left in for the first series of the second half, evidently to practice his handoffs and didn't even throw on 3rd-and-19. His day ended three minutes after the second half kickoff.
  4. Mitch Mustain, USC's #2 quarterback, was only allowed to throw the ball once. It was the only passing attempt of the second half.
  5. After Mustain, Pete Carroll put in Aaron Corp and later Garrett Green -- apparently with firm instructions that they would have to find their own ride home if they attempted a forward pass.
  6. No single running back was featured. Instead, three different tailbacks each had over 100 yards rushing. Four more players carried the ball once.
  7. Broderick Green took almost all the reps in the second half. When Allen Bradford was healthy, he was the fifth string tailback. Fifth. 
  8. On the 4th quarter play where USC "went for it" on 4th down, the alternative was to kick a field goal (thereby "trying to run up the score"). So they ran on 4th and 5. Another alternative might have been to insult Wazzu by taking a knee or kicking a 5-yard punt. Carroll did not look happy about the touchdown.
  9. Every single player who made the trip got on the field. Walkons played. It was like Rudy, but only halfway through the season. Gerald Washington got a tackle. Remember that the NCAA limits the number of athletes you can bring on the road, otherwise they might have suited up a tuba player.
  10. Most of the play calling in the second half? Zone blocking and running.

Again, I can deal with bias...Brando and Lundquist are on contract with CBS, CBS is the SEC's home to the point that they even blocked ESPN from picking up any SEC games a couple of weeks ago so its clear that they want to proctect their cash cow. An SEC team in the BCS Title game goes a long way to increasing viewership so one would expect that Brando and by extension Lundquist would pimp their product. Where I draw the line though is where they don't even do the basic investigation.

This is a problem if for no other reason that because of his national recognition those comments by Brando can have influence on voters and coaches who did not watch the game and that is probably why Brando did it. As for the comments about SC dropping in the computer polls, it's just more fodder...these guys have no idea how SC's win will affect their ranking.

As Adam's list shows Pete Carroll did just about everything he could not to run it up but you have to let the kids play and play they did. Tim and Verne have been sipping a little too much Gumbo if you ask me.

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