Archive For The “FBS” Category

Your Bye Week College Football Viewing Guide

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Your Bye Week College Football Viewing Guide

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably wondering what to watch when there’s no Lehigh football game to attend or view on a fall weekend.

Fortunately, dear Reader, I’m available to help you answer that question.

From the early morning College Gameday at Happy Valley to Colorado/Washington State “Pac 12 After Dark”, there are a boatload of different opportunities to immerse yourself in the wild, wonderful world of college football.

Every week on College Sports Journal, I compile a list of links of every live internet stream that the NFF College Football Broadcast schedule puts out.  But this week, you don’t even need to go there, because everything you’ll need, Patriot League, FCS, or FBS, I’ll have right here.
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Not A Bad Feast Of FBS and FCS College Football This Weekend

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Not A Bad Feast Of FBS and FCS College Football This Weekend

Still bummed that Lehigh’s Patriot League Championship season is over?  Yeah, me too.

That doesn’t mean that I’ve totally tuned out the college football landscape, though.

Starting tonight, there’s some terrific games on TV and online streaming that I’ll be watching, both at the FCS and the FBS level.  Happily, the FCS Round of 16 games are not all going up against each other like last week, so the opportunity is there to catch one or more of those games – and you can bet that I will be.

Below the flip, starting with the MAC championship game tonight, are my picks for games to watch, and – why not? – some picks as to who I think will win.

(Yes, it includes Penn State.  Stop asking.)
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My FCS Top 25, 9/13/2016

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My FCS Top 25, 9/13/2016

You didn’t ask for them, but here’s my pick for this week’s FCS Top 25.

Photo Credit: Chicago Tribune

Illinois State kicker Sean Slattery, right, celebrates with quarterback Koty Thelen after scoring the game-winning field goal as Northwestern running back Justin Jackson, left, reacts.  (Nam Y. Yuh/AP)

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Monmouth 23, Lehigh 21 Postgame Commentary: The Importance of Burst Bubbles

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Monmouth 23, Lehigh 21 Postgame Commentary: The Importance of Burst Bubbles

The decision was made.  We were going up to my parent’s house over Labor Day weekend.

I knew it was the right decision, the correct decision.  My dad, who had suffered a back injury, was rehabbing, requiring for the first time in his incredibly active life to require the use of a walker to get around. 
He and my mother wouldn’t be driving down to Lehigh for any football games in the next couple of months, which effectively meant if I was going to spend any significant time with them, it was going to be this weekend – opening weekend.  The weekend that I wait for with fevered anticipation for more than nine months.
But sometimes bubbles need to be burst.  
For the last nine months, I’ve lived in bubbles: a bubble of Lehigh football, FCS expertise, and a focus on the football season.  I had lived in a bubble where I thought my father was still invincible, even in retirement unable to stay in one place, always able to come down with mom to visit once a season and take in a game or two – in between musical engagements, my mother’s teaching commitments, and countless other trips and activities.

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On Criminals And College Athletics

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On Criminals And College Athletics

Where does it ever end?

That’s the question I keep asking myself lately.

It seems to have added up for me from six months of lunacy, one where collegiate athletic departments have been caught up with such a large number of horrifying incidents.

There’s serious allegations of rape by athletes at Baylor and Vanderbilt.  Louisville hiring prostitutes to lure in potential recruits.  The case of the Stanford swimmer who got off with a slap on the wrist after raping a young woman.  They are literally everywhere, with new twists and turns coming in so fast it’s hard to keep up with it all.

Even past scandals involving college athletes don’t seem to keep themselves out of the news lately, either.  The Penn State Jerry Sandusky story that never seems to die got a new lease on life when alleged abuses were revealed as far back as the 1970s.  The when-will-it-ever-end revelations of sham classes at North Carolina.  The continuous trickle of revelations at Miami (FL), where the latest is that football players got free use of luxury cars.

The most worrying thread that weaves itself through this collegiate offseason is the word “criminal” — an offseason where criminals reveal themselves as students on college campuses, criminals that hang out with athletic departments, trying to get some of the fame, fortune and swag, and criminals reveal themselves in the management of collegiate athletics as well.

It’s enough to depress any college football fan, and to rightfully make one think: Can it happen here?
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Six Possible FCS Wins Over FBS Teams, 2016 Edition

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Six Possible FCS Wins Over FBS Teams, 2016 Edition

(Photo Credit: The Oregonian)Even though Lehigh isn’t taking on any FBS teams this season, it’s not too early to take a look at the 2016 college football schedule and look at some of the games that pit FCS teams vs. FBS teams and look for potential ups…

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Penn State Focus Shouldn’t Only Be Paterno, But How Sex Crimes Were Handled At Penn State Overall

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Penn State Focus Shouldn’t Only Be Paterno, But How Sex Crimes Were Handled At Penn State Overall
In the news last week came, essentially, four new claims of abuse that happened at the hands of Gerald Sandusky while he employed as a linebackers coach at Penn State.

All are, at a bare minimum, troubling, and they invite the question “who knew what, and when” in terms of these allegations.

Three of the allegations, however, are worthy of further examination because they could demonstrate that the administrators at the time, which would include former athletic directors Ed Czekaj and Jim Tarman, violated the law.

It also could eventually – though nothing has surfaced yet – implicate Joe Paterno.

With the very important caveat being we don’t know everything, we do seem to have enough to bring some context to the goings-on inside Penn State’s athletic department during the last 40 years.  The only clear fact was that child sex allegations weren’t handled with the respect they deserved.
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Sandusky/Paterno Timeline Keeps Getting More Difficult To Ignore

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Sandusky/Paterno Timeline Keeps Getting More Difficult To Ignore

The crimes committed by Gerald Sandusky continue to be a band-aid that is re-applied, and continuously ripped off, the arms of those of love Penn State.

Already convicted by a court of law, Sandusky has what is effectively a life sentence, while others who were in power at Penn State during the 1998 period where sex crimes were reported internally, Graham Spanier, Gary Schulz and Tim Curley, have still not faced any sort of trial and are still at-large today.

Last week, with an interesting sentence appearing deep in an insurance lawsuit involving a Sandusky victim settlement, the band-aid was once again ripped off.

The details of the lawsuit claim that Joe Paterno chose not to act in 1976 when one victim reported abuse by Sandusky, while Sarah Ganim, the hero reporter who broke the Sandusky story wide-open five years ago, added a second story of abuse in the 1970s where Paterno pressured one of Sandusky’s victims over the phone in the 1971 to not press charges against him.

Penn State folks doggedly and consistently appear to deny that Paterno had anything to do with Sandusky, with the Paterno family themselves on the leading edge of of the denials.

As you’ll discover below, these denials are becoming less and less plausible by the second.
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Like A Zombie, The WAC Could Indeed Rise from the Dead

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Like A Zombie, The WAC Could Indeed Rise from the Dead

Recently, I wrote an entire article about how the way the NCAA allows schools to become FBS is broken.

It turns out I had no idea exactly how broken until I was guided towards the Idaho Vandals Football Consultant report, helpfully posted in full on the University of Idaho’s website.

In that report, one of the possible avenues that Idaho was mulling over was to join the WAC.

I was confused – the WAC had stopped sponsoring FBS football long ago, a couple of years after then-commissioner Karl Benson finished his uncanny impersonation of Baghdad Bob in regards to saving FBS football for that conference – only to leave his job to take over at the Sun Belt Conference.

But it turns out, after a fresh read of the NCAA rulebook, it is indeed true.

Like a bad horror movie, the zombified WAC football conference could indeed resurrect itself – and, in the process, shows how royally screwed up this system of FCS and FBS movement really is.
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Idaho’s Return To Big Sky Shows How Broken FBS Membership Is

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Idaho’s Return To Big Sky Shows How Broken FBS Membership Is

People rightfully can paint me as an FCS football fan.  I love Football Championship Subdivision, the section of Division I where Lehigh and the rest of the Patriot League competes.  I find the quality of the games tremendous, and the emphasis on football and competition as the exact right balance.

From that fact, some might also think I’m performing cartwheels around my office now that the University of Idaho, after they were unceremoniously cast out of the Sun Belt as football-only members, have decided that their only choice to retain football is to join the rest of the Big Sky in sponsoring football at the FCS level, starting in 2018.

You’d be wrong about that.

What Idaho’s decision really should be telling us is that the process for switching subdivisions is a senseless, conference-driven exercise that forces schools into making tough decisions that they shouldn’t be forced to make.
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