South Carolina, Baylor Lead Overrated Squads
By Joe Coughlin
Tom Brady, John Mayer, "Anchorman," New Year's Eve.
Quite a motley list, but what they have in common is that they're more talk than they are walk, more bark than bite, more Simon than Garfunkel. They are overrated.
Before you show me Brady's rings or Mayer's Grammys — or make me watch Ron Burgundy lead a newsmen brawl — let me explain. These are all overrated to me. I believe the scale of overrated is not universal. It is dependent on a person's experiences. For instance, if your friend suggests you "check out" John Mayer on Monday and then Thursday, and then Saturday through Friday, all before you've had a chance to do so, well then, by the time you get around to hearing Mr. Mayer, he doesn't sound all too impressive — and his awful mid-croon facial expressions overshadow the serious guitar chops.
It's similar in sports, especially college football. The next big thing is more exciting than the current one; therefore, every pundit in front of a camera or computer screen searches for those eyeballs. So, as Alabama rolls more tide, we start talking about up-and-coming Baylor or BCS-busting Fresno State. But do these "predictions" carry the weight of their strong words?
Like most New Year's Eves, rarely is the hype lived up to.
• South Carolina: If you saw our Google Hangout this week than you already caught my thoughts on the Gamecocks. Unfortunately, the hype for the other USC began in the preseason thanks to Jadaveon Clowney and his titan-like abilities. But, the Gamecocks are a flawed team. They lack a defensive punch behind Clowney and seeing as he his smothered every snap, South Carolina gives up points. If it wasn't for the emergence of RB Mike Davis (71 carries, 508 yards, 6 TDs), they would have lost to a good Central Florida team.
• Baylor: We are all impressed with a nation-best 70 points per game, but the Bears have yet to play a team with a winning record or in a power conference. I love RB Lache Seastrunk and think he keeps himself in the Heisman running, but Baylor sure as rain won't keep up 70 points a game, nor will it only give up seven points a game. It will happen all of the sudden and we'll see how Baylor reacts. My guess? It won't be like the 16th-best team in America.
• Louisville: Another case of "PROVE IT!" Teddy Bridgewater is a superstar and likely a top pick in next year's NFL draft, but I'm not sure how that got confused with the AP poll. Yes, the Cardinals are 4-0, but they haven't played a team worth watching, and they put up an underwhelming performance against a bad Kentucky team. The problem here is Louisville may not go anywhere. The Cardinals don't have much of a schedule, but Central Florida on Oct. 18 or Houston on Nov. 16 pose the biggest threats.
• Michigan: Easiest one on this board, and the one I've written about before. So, I'll keep it short. The Wolverines have an inconsistent offense, hole-y defense and lack focus. It actually seems like they are getting worse. They are not a title contender — for the Big Ten and definitely not the country. Why are they still ranked?
My other best guesses for teams that will plummet from their posts: Clemson (No. 3), Washington (No. 15) and Texas Tech (No. 20).
But hey, this is all just talk.