“Proving It on the Field�

In many football arguments, “Proved It on the Field” is a popular quote for fans and media alike though it’s usually misused. Does it simply mean a “Wâ€?? If you play poorly and win or win by a bad call, have you proved it on the field? Conversely, if you play well and lose, have you proved anything? In many cases, the media somehow bastardize the statement to defend human polls over computer polls, which obviously makes no sense as computer polls are based on facts and human polls on opinions. In any case, while you can’t say team A is necessarily better than team B at this point in the season, for most teams, you can tell if they are legitimately good or just hype.

USC, Texas, Va Tech, Alabama, and to some extent, Ohio St. have played enough reasonable opponents to merit high rankings. That’s not to say these teams don’t still have questions, but they have each played at least one strong opponent and looked good on the field. Of the top teams, Ohio St. (and Texas) has played the toughest individual opponent. If the Buckeyes had the same schedule as USC, Va Tech, or Bama, they would be undefeated as well. A close game against Texas and an impressive win over Iowa still proves more than the teams below.

Florida St., Georgia, Tennessee, and Miami are in the second tier in terms of proving it on the field. FSU could have and perhaps should have lost 2 games at this point. Georgia’s marquee win to date is versus once over-hyped Boise St., and games against the Cocks and Bulldogs were closer than they should have been. Tennessee lost a close one to the Gators and won an even closer one over the Tigers; however, despite the talent, no one can yet really know if this team is any good. Miami is also hard to pin down. They are loaded with talent but yet to play up to their ability, and like the Vols, Miami has a close loss to a team from Florida and a close win over some Tigers in a Death Valley.

Rounding out the AP Top 10 is Cal, who has done nothing so far to warrant their ranking other than beat up on some pathetic competition: 41-3 over division whatever Sacremento State, who only has 1 win; 56-17 over one win Washington; 35-10 over two win Illinois (this is Cal’s marquee win); 41-13 over winless Northern Arizona.; Finally, a 28-0 victory over one win regular Arizona. The only thing the Bears have proven is that IA is better than IAA.

But once again, Texas Tech beats Cal. If you think Cal knows how to schedule patsies, check out the Red Raiders: 56-3 over FIU (only win is vs. IAA opponent); 80-20 over IAA Sam Houston St.; 63-7 over winless IAA Indiana St.; 30-17 over Kansas. I suppose Kansas is Tech’s marquee win.

Just outside the AP top 10 is LSU. These Tigers have more questions than a round of Jeopardy. The QB has been both the savior and the goat. Injuries have plagued the offense since preseason, and the play of the defense has been sub par to say the least. The talent is definitely there. Every offensive player on the 2 deep has a shot at the NFL. The defense is loaded as well and starts 6 seniors. The biggest question is coaching. Miles isn’t the right fit for LSU, but he doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel, just continue the success that’s already there. Most LSU fans will give him the benefit of the doubt as no one wants to relive the Archer/Hallman/Dinardo fiasco of the ‘90’s. Of course, I think these Tigers are one of several teams (Tulane and USM) who deserve a mulligan this year. So what have the Tigers proven on the field 1) they have heart 2) they will be competitive in every game even if the defense stinks 3) they have the ability to run the table, if they get everyone in sync.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply