Well, here we are. The last day of college football for 200-plus days. Go ahead, take it a little easy at work today. Think about football. Savor it. Because after this, winter gets really cold.
JOHNNY FOOTBALL V. T-MAGIC >>> Remember Friday night’s Cotton Bowl? If not here’s a reminder. It was mostly just Johnny Manziel doing magical things against Oklahoma:
Remember when, seven games into his redshirt freshman season, Taylor Martinez was getting some low-level Heisman buzz? It seemed somewhat absurd at the time and was rendered moot when Martinez injured his ankle in game eight, but after watching Manziel win the Heisman as a redshirt freshman, maybe the buzz around Martinez wasn’t so far-fetched.
Here’s the rushing comparison between the two quarterbacks through the first eight games of their freshman years:
Manziel: 793 yards/99.13 ypg/6.78 ypc/13 TDs/6 wins/2 losses
Martinez: 886 yards/110.75 ypg/7.91 ypc/12 TDs/7 wins/1 loss
So far, slight edge Martinez. But the gap between Manziel and Martinez swings to the other side in the passing game:
Manziel: 173 – 269/64.3 completion percentage/2216 yards/12.8 ypc/16 TDs/ 6 Ints
Martinez: 72 – 120/60.0 completion percentage/1161 yards/16.13 ypc/9 TDs/3 Ints
Martinez was never going to put up the gaudy passing numbers in Shawn Watson’s offense that Manziel did in Sumlin’s short passing game — just look at the pass attempts. Johnny Football’s clearly a better passer as a freshman but it’s interesting to consider what that freshman season would’ve been like if Taylor wasn’t slowed by that ankle over the final third.
That’s not an attempt to diminish anything Manziel did, but it provides an interesting measuring stick for Martinez’s earliest days as a Husker. So much has happened since then that it’s hard to remember the excitement Nebraska fans felt in September and October of 2010.
Excitement that, in retrospect, was totally justified.
THE WORST COACH IN ALABAMA HISTORY >>> Pat Forde has put together a pretty cool looking ‘Tale of the Tape’ for tonight’s BCS Championship Game. Lots to learn in there, including who is the worst coach in Alabama history.
OREGON LIVES! >>> Remember that going away party we all held for Chip Kelly during the Fiesta Bowl? Not so fast. “Sources say” Kelly is returning to Oregon after meeting with the Philadelphia Eagles, Cleveland Browns and Buffalo Bills. It’s the second straight year that Kelly looked like a sure bet to head to the pros, only to shock everyone and return to Eugene.
By all accounts, Phil Knight was heavily involved in Kelly’s return which comes as a surprise to absolutely no one.