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Can Mississippi State Really do Better than Sylvester Croom?

Sometimes you have to look at yourself in the mirror, be honest, and ask yourself, “Can I really do better than that?” If Mississippi State were to ask themselves that question regarding their head football coach, my answer would be “No.” I don’t know who Mississippi State thinks they are, or what they expect to be in a football sense, but I thought Sylvester Croom did a pretty good job with the program. From what I remember, he inherited a program on NCAA probation with scholarship reductions, one that had gone 7-27 in the three previous years. Sure, it took a few years before Mississippi State was no longer a punching bag, but they had reached that point.

Croom scored a big win over Florida in his first year as the Bulldogs’ head coach, helping launch the fire Ron Zook movement. In 2005, Croom’s squad obliterated rival Ole Miss 35-14. Finally by mid-season in 2006, his third year with the program, Mississippi State started to play at a respectable level. The Bulldogs kept all of their games in the second half of that season close, proving to me that Croom was getting Mississippi State to a respectable level.

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Taking the Raiders Job Paid Off for Kiffin

A lot of people, myself included, wondered what Lane Kiffin was thinking when he took the Raiders job. Nobody lasted there longer than like two years, and nobody had a positive experience working for Al Davis. It was a miserable gig where one was guaranteed to fail, so as a result, nobody was willing to take it. But after getting rejected by several candidates, the Raiders came across Lane Kiffin who was eager to accept the gig. Knowing he was doomed for failure and a miserable experience, why would Kiffin take the job? Now we know why.

Lane Kiffin only had to put up with Al Davis for a year and a half, getting compensated handsomely in the process, before moving on. He got to skip a couple steps in the coaching tree to get to the top level — NFL head coach — and raise his profile in the meantime. It’s unlikely that he would have drawn serious consideration for the Tennessee job had he remained at USC as their offensive coordinator. Usually top coordinators at top schools are offered head coaching gigs at second level schools, not top notch schools such as the Michigans, Tennessees, and Alabamas. Those schools are looking for guys with head coaching experience. But having been in the NFL working for the Raiders, Kiffin got to pad his resume and make himself qualified for any job out there. If he could make a dysfunctional team like the Raiders competitive, he surely could compete with any college program.

I wondered what Lane Kiffin was doing when he took that Raiders job, but now I know. And when someone else accepts the gig in the near future, I’ll understand that they have a reason for doing it, too.

Iowa Fans Caught Having Sex in Metrodome Bathroom

And we can’t even use the excuse that they were just trying to keep warm since it took place indoors. In case you missed it because it was played late on Saturday night, Iowa trounced Minnesota 55-0 to retain the Floyd of Rosedale. With the game already in the bag, a few fans decided they had to keep things interesting in the best way they knew how: they had sex, which seems to be a theme lately at football games.

According to a police report, a Metrodome security officer saw two people having sex in a handicapped stall after noticing two sets of feet with underwear dropped to the ground.

A group of 15 onlookers were gawking at the scene by the time officers broke the couple up and wrote them misdemeanor citations.

The woman, 38, was turned over to her husband. The man, 26, was turned over to his girlfriend.

The best part of this whole ordeal might just be that they were cheating on their significant others. What does it even mean to be “turned over” to someone? How do we know they weren’t turned down afterward? And you know that somewhere in Iowa there’s a dude emailing his friends this link, bragging to all of them.

Mike Leach Would Put Oklahoma in Front of Texas in Big 12

The inevitable happened: Oklahoma beat Texas Tech in Norman creating a three-way tie for the Big 12 South lead. Texas beat Oklahoma on a neutral field, Texas Tech beat Texas in Lubbock, and Oklahoma beat Texas Tech in Norman. Those were each team’s sole loss, yet only one team can represent the Big 12 South in the Big 12 title game against Missouri, and after that point, only one can advance to the BCS National Title game should the Big 12 South winner lose to Missouri. So how do you decipher things? Who should get the nod between the three teams? Texas Tech coach Mike Leach knows his pick between Oklahoma and Texas: “I would put Oklahoma ahead,” Leach said. “They beat us and they deserve it.”

Oklahoma can eliminate themselves from contention should they lose to Oklahoma State in their final regular season game — something entirely within the realm of possibility. Should that happen, Texas Tech would need to beat Baylor in order to capture the Big 12 South since they own the tiebreaker with Texas. Should things end in a three-way tie, I would disagree with Leach and give the nod to Texas. The reason I give Texas the leg up on the other two teams is because they beat Oklahoma on a neutral field, not at home the way Texas Tech and Oklahoma got their wins. Additionally, Texas fought back and made it very close with Texas Tech on the road in their lone loss. By virtue of their neutral field win, I would say Texas should represent the Big 12 South should things remain tied. A Texas vs. Alabama/Florida winner for the national title? I could definitely go for that.

Notre Dame Fans Classy til the Very End

So much for the delusions of an 8-4 season and surge to prominence under Charlie Weis and his “number one recruiting classes in the country.” Notre Dame suffered its 5th and no doubt most embarrassing loss of the season Saturday, getting beat 24-23 by a Syracuse team that had won just two games prior to the contest. The Orange had also just fired their head coach the week before for good measure, something from which ND might have to take a cue. Things are so miserable for Notre Dame fans at this point that they’re trying to find new ways of amusing themselves at football games — they’re making snowballs. And hitting their own players with ‘em:

Notre Dame football players were pelted by snowballs from fans sitting in the student section during their loss to Syracuse on Saturday.

“To throw snowballs at their own team, I didn’t think that was a smart thing to do. I guess (they thought) it was funny,” defensive tackle Pat Kuntz said.

Defensive lineman Ian Williams got hit in the helmet, defensive end Ethan Johnson was struck on the left cheek and a St. Joseph County police officer on the sideline looking into the crowd got hit in the chest.

Well, I guess that’s one way to respond to an embarrassing loss. I wonder what kind of raucous the fans of UW and Wassou would be causing if they had the manners of Notre Dame fans. This is certainly a low point for the program and no doubt the fans will regret their actions (especially the ones in jail).

UPDATE: Check out video of the snowball fights

Bill Belichick Offers Advice to Urban Meyer on Blowing Teams Out

Convenient that two pretty certified jerks are good friends inside the football coaching circle. Think about it: Bill Belichick and Urban Meyer have a lot in common; Belichick used to run up the score last year, Meyer’s doing it this year. Naturally, after seeing Florida blow out South Carolina Saturday, Belichick had some words of advice for Meyer on handling his players:

Who knows better than Belichick what it’s like to have a team that’s dominating opponents, and making it look easy in the process? And who knows better how the hype that accompanies being ranked No. 3 and remaining in the national title hunt can adversely affect a team?

“I had a very nice call from Coach Belichick, and he said just make sure you stay on top of them because they are going to be hearing how good they are,” Meyer said Sunday morning. “When you watch film, we still can be a lot better.”

Will Belichick counsel them on advice prior to the National Championship game should the Gators reach that point? Interestingly enough, Meyer was also pressured to answer a question whether or not Utah (currently undefeated and where he coached prior to Florida) deserved a shot at the title game ahead of a one-loss Florida team. No way they do, but it sure puts Meyer in a bad spot to answer the question. And we all know what the answer is, of course.

(via Ben Maller)

Video: Chris Beanie Wells Hurdles Illinois Defender, He’s Got Hops

We’ve already had a couple of notable hurdles make the front page here at LBS this year. One came earlier in the college season courtesy of Knowshon Moreno, the other was recently achieved by Giants tight end, Kevin Boss. This airborne move by Ohio St running back Chris Beanie Wells ranks right up there with the other two. Check it:

Beanie went freakin airborne on that one. It wasn’t so much about the height as it was about the distance. And the best part was it allowed him to grab another 10 yeards on the run. There’s no doubting the talent of Beanie Wells and how much better he makes the Buckeyes. Boy did they miss him when he was hurt.