Sunday, August 31, 2008

Miscellanea

Time for another collection of miscellaneous links as I watch Colorado play CSU. Not particularly excellent football, but it does have the merits of being the only Division I-A game I've ever attended, as part of my series when the last full high school, college, and NFL game I attended featured Chris Brown (ok, pretty sure about high school, don't remember him but it's likely).

You know the problem with collecting links and revisiting them later? One of them is the link may expire or otherwise lose functionality. Via SMQ and FanHouse linking to Dennis Dodd, USA Football put online the officials' test. Alas, while the test is still online, you could only get your test scored through July 15 (yes, I held onto this link for a while). Anybody got an answer key?

SMQ cogently points out that those begging for an NCAA football playoff may be a case of "Be careful what you ask for-you may get it."

Via Tom Kirkendall, a link to an interesting interview with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. I don't know that I particularly like Jones, but I've long respected his business acumen w/r/t running the Cowboys and his willingness to shake up the occasional complacency of NFL ownership.

Love for me. Nicer guys over email than they come off as on the blog. I emailed them to be sure of this.

Courtesy of Michael Lombardi, some excellent advice from Bill Parcells on picking the 53-man roster. 20 best offensive players, 20 best defensive players, 3 specialists (K, P, LS), and 2 more active players plus a third quarterback (back when teams had those).

The guy who came up with the same CFB playoff proposal I'd already come up with whines about preseason polls. But, what he's really whining about is poll inertia and the anchoring effect of preseason polls. As Tyler Cowen says, the key is really strong opinions, weakly held. Most people can't do that.

Michael Vick: wasted all his money on bad decisions. I'm reminding of Tug McGraw's comment after signing what was then a big contracts: "90% of it will go to women, whiskey, and good times. The other 10%, I'll probably waste."

Every fan knows that about the worst thing that can happen for an NFL team is to lose its starting QB. How much does that really cost a team, though? PFR blog took a look at this issue in three parts (one, two, and three). The answer is about one game, generally speaking, which is probably less than you thought.

By now, Gene Upshaw has been deceased for about 10 days, so it's kind of pointless to blog much about him. Andrew Brandt rightly points out the latest deal the NFLPA got was the best deal they'd ever gotten. See Michael Silver, though he kind of misses the point that Upshaw would be committing a federal crime if he channeled retirement benefits for former players without obtaining the consent of the current players.

Yakuza Rich is a worthless homer when writing about the Cowboys, but pretty good when writing about other stuff. See, for example, this non-Cowboy post on whether or not preseason success matters, looking at defensive statistics. Hint: it doesn't.

More on the flexbone, from SMQ, whom I will still keep calling SMQ despite his new moniker of Dr. Saturday, much as I refer to the guy in charge of EDSBS as Orson Swindle even though I know his real name is Spencer Hall.

Last for now, but certainly not least, Smart Football will be doing a weekly preview of a coaching matchup. For this week's action, it was Alabama-Clemson. Thanks to WLS for making the coverage map a liar and showing me the Michigan State-Cal game instead. Or not, jerks.

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