Apparently, the last session several readers of the GPP had with our guest psychologist Dr. Frasier Crane did not really help matters when it comes to putting this season and the state of FIU football in perspective.
So let's try this again, but this time with a different approach so none of you Golden Panthers fans goes all Paulie Walnuts FOUR games into the season. Let's see if Dr. Melfi and Tony can help us out here.
GPP people. . .We're not in Kansas anymore (that's the last Wizard of Oz reference here until the 2008 season opener back in Kansas). The out-of-conference schedule is just about done, with the exception of the Oct. 27 game in Arkansas. So now we'll get a better measuring stick of where FIU football is at with games against the Sun Belt.
For those of you who wrote already complaining and hyperventilating about MC....I'll let Mr. Soprano deal out some advice for you folks. As TS said in one episode..."Think. The Big [Frigging] Picture." Of course, he used a more colorful word that begins with "f" and ends with "ing". But hopefully you get "The Picture".
(Before anyone starts pounding the keyboard, I AM NOT COMPARING MC to the coaches in the following examples -- just the situations) Here are two NFL historical examples of what MC DID and DID NOT INHERIT at FIU. When S.F. 49ers coach Bill Walsh retired in 1988 he went out with a Super Bowl win and left a loaded team for George Seifert. The only thing Seifert had to do was NOT screw it up. He didn't and won the 1989 Super Bowl. If Seifert starts 0-4 with the '89 49ers then he's being run out of town with pitchforks. THIS IS NOT MC'S SITUATION coming into FIU.
MC's situation is more like when Jimmy Johnson inherited the 1989 Dallas Cowboys. Tom Landry went 7-9, 7-8 and 3-13 in his final three seasons and there was a lack of talent on the Cowboys. JJ had to come in and build his team with draft picks and trades -- like the highway robbery of sending mediocre Herschel Walker to Minnesota for a bevy of picks. THIS IS THE SITUATION MC inherited when he took over at FIU.
Forget about the Kansas game for now. Yes, FIU was annihilated, but I think KU may be the best of the 4 BCS teams FIU has played this season. We'll find out for sure when Big XII play starts, but the Jayhawks have a balanced high-powered offense and a stout D. Penn State could not run, but threw on FIU, and its D denied the FIU offense. Maryland will struggle this season. The Hurricanes have a good D, but their offense is like tea -- it's hot and cold.
Now in these next 7 Sun Belt games we'll see where FIU is at. The offense had some spurts in the first half against KU. Wayne Younger went downfield more and the freshmen receivers made some plays. KU focused on A'mod Ned and they shut him down. The defense had no answers for that no-huddle KU offense. That reminded me of the Louisiana-Lafayette no-huddle offense which has given FIU fits over the years. The FIU special teams are better than last season, but are still a work in progress.
So when it comes to FIU this season and next, the GPP like TS says "Think. The Big - - - - - - - Picture". MC has to clean up and build what was left from the previous coach, which is basically nothing. Asking fans down here to follow TS's quote is like asking Jennifer Aniston to be ugly -- it's an impossible task (BTW my pick, Jen over Angelina). But that's where FIU football is at. With each game and practice these young Golden Panthers gain a little more experience and develop. There are too many great athletes down here in our area for FIU not to become a successful football program. The previous FIU leadership did not capitalize on that and that's why FIU is where it's at today. Have faith and "Think. The Big - - - - - - - Picture.
GPP WinaBlog leaderboard
4-0: FIUrulez (79), NY Josh (84), FIUPantherFan (86), MRedArmy (90), Formenter (91), FIUmom (96), GPP (96), FIU Fanatic (100), Hay (106), 24/7-11 (107), FIU0406 (108), yippee (121), Crazy Cane (122).
3-1: CJ (111), JMFIU (111), SouthPaw (132).
2-2: Messod (135).
1-3: NYCFIUFan (127), YouGotGold (149).
0-4: alt7787 (151), FIUandME (156).
** FIU/Middle Tennessee scores need to be in by 11:59 pm on Friday, Sept. 28.
quijote: Got to have the Cuban coffee pix in there - good stuff. As far as your Texas A&M question, they are just overrated. I don't think you can read too much into what FIU did vs. the Hurricanes and what the Hurricanes did vs. A&M. Only if FIU and A&M played each other. There is nothing new on the PG situation. And in NO way is getting Don Strock back going to be better for FIU. Like has been said before here you can make a strong argument that DS may have set back the FIU program 2 or 3 years, because of his recruiting and lack of work ethic from practice to game planning.
MRedArmy: MC & PG inherited the brutal out-of-conference schedule from DS & Rick Mello. Word is future out-of-conference games will be toned down some instead of playing a gauntlet of Top 25 teams. MC & PG take control of the sked in 2010. FIU's sked is booked through 2009.
YouGotGold: 1) Chris Cook is just a sophomore and he's still developing. He has gotten better from last season. Read my story on him in Tuesday's Miami Herald for more info. 2) There is no excuse for FIU's offense to be taking those early timeouts vs. the HCs and KU. They need to get better organized, b/c that will cost them in a close game. 3) As far as the QBs in the 4th quarter, I'll look into it and have your answer in the next blog. 4) I don't follow your question about kicking a field goal when down 27-3??
UltimateFIUFan & chil'in man: Nothing is wrong over here. I did not travel to Kansas, because the Herald decided to cut the travel budget for last week. I WILL BE IN Nashville this weekend to cover the FIU/MT game. Looking forward to some good BarBQ and country music.
FIUJM: There is nothing new on the PG front. Ryan Young is a writer from a Kansas newspaper who filled in for me last Saturday. I'll be back with the Golden Panthers this Saturday in Nashville.
Caned_out & fiurabbit: Welcome to the GPP!
Must correct myself on one of the highlights from the Turtle Thomas interview on Descarga Deportiva last Wednesday. It was FIU pitcher Chris Allen whom TT noticed was tipping his pitches last season, and NOT Corey Polizzano. TT fixed Allen's problem and said Polizzano has been hitting the weight room like never before.