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“Les Miles is a Jackass” and other headlines from the over-hyped SEC

On July 1, 2007, Les Miles, esteemed coach of LSU, went on the attack and called out USC, the Pac-10 and the Big Ten. Refer to exhibit A – LSU coach rates SEC best. Lets take a closer look at some of his comments and then bring up some issues he clearly intentionally chose to ignore.

“I can tell you this, that they have a much easier road to travel,” Miles said of the Trojans. “They’re going to play real knockdown drag-outs with UCLA and Washington, Cal-Berkley, Stanford — some real juggernauts — and they’re going to end up, it would be my guess, in some position so if they win a game or two, that they’ll end up in the title (game). I would like that path for us.

What a funny guy you are Les. Last year you invited Louisiana-Lafayette (6-6 team out of the Sun Belt) , Fresno St. (4-8 out of the WAC) and Tulane (4-8 out of C-USA) for home games and you still got to play Miss St. (3-9) (a game you did not cover) and Mississippi (4-8). You lost to Auburn, a team that barely beat Nebraska 17-14; a team USC easily beat 28-10. LSU barely beat Tennessee, a team that a terrible Penn St. team beat, barely beat Mississippi and barely beat Arkansas, a team USC destroyed on the road 50-14 and who also lost their bowl game to a Big Ten team. So Les… lets take a look at the out of conference juggernauts you decided to play in 2007:

Middle Tennessee St.
Tulane
Louisiana Tech
Virginia Tech – I will give props where they are due and this is a great non conference game but it is at home this year. The other three games are a total joke.

in conference you play:

Miss. St.
Mississippi

So before the season starts you know you have 5 blow out games that will not be close.

So now lets look at what USC does with their non-conference schedule. Last year they played:

Arkansas
Nebraska – road
Notre Dame

This year they play:

Idaho
Nebraska – road
Notre Dame – road

USC looks to play big names. USC picks up Ohio St. in 2008 and is talking to BC about playing a series with them. They are not trolling the Sun Belt or Conf USA looking for beat on teams to come play in the Coliseum. You get what you deserve and if you play good teams and you beat them all your season will not be questioned and you go to the BCS. If you have a loss or two you do not deserve to be there.

More jibber jabber from Les Miles:

Miles said the subject of the SEC’s superiority came up at league meetings in May. The conference office compiled statistics showing 58 football players from SEC schools were invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, where pro scouts and coaches evaluate players before the draft. The Atlantic Coast Conference and Big 12 Conference each had 43 players invited, NFL records show. The Pac-10 was fourth with 39 players invited. Eleven of the 32 players selected in the first round of the 2007 NFL draft came from SEC schools, including four LSU players. JaMarcus Russell, the No. 1 pick, played three seasons for the Tigers, two of them for Miles. Based on the above and two seasons of coaching in the SEC, Miles told his New Orleans audience the conference, from week to week, is the football league “most like the NFL” in America.

What does this have to do with anything? USC has 10 of 11 starters returning on Defense so how can their players go to the combine or get drafted. Are USC’s players less talented because they are young and not eligible for the NFL. USC is becoming the model in college football with a all positions are open for competition philosophy and if you are an 18 year old freshman or a 23 year old 5 year senior you will get the chance to play if you are the best player on the field. USC has ridiculous talent and this is evident from them having top 1 or 2 draft classes the last three years. These kids can not play in the NFL even if they wanted to because they are not eligible so who gets drafted means diddly poo in my book.

More from Les:

In nine seasons of the BCS, the SEC has three national champions: Tennessee in 1998, LSU in 2003 and Florida in 2006. Auburn was undefeated in 2004 but didn’t play in the BCS Championship Game, finishing third in the BCS standings behind eventual champion USC and runner-up Oklahoma. Miles said Auburn was the victim of an injustice and repeated his assertion that an unbeaten SEC champion should play for a national championship. Two SEC schools — LSU in 2003 and Florida in 2006 — proved a team doesn’t have to be undefeated to win a national title. Both were 13-1, the only teams in BCS history to win the championship without a perfect record.

Right Mr. Miles, Auburn not playing for a national title in 2004 was an injustice but a one loss USC team in 2003 was just and fair when LSU won the title. USC dismantled a favored Michigan squad when LSU barely made it past an Oklahoma squad. An undefeated SEC team means absolutely nothing when the entire conference schedules games against 1-AA schools, the WAC and Sun Belt conferences. In 2004, Auburn played Louisiana Monroe at home, Citadel at home and Louisiana Tech at home while USC played at Virginia Tech (a 24-13 win), Colorado St at home, at BYU and at home against Notre Dame. I think USC plays a significantly tougher schedule and deserved to be in this game. Going undefeated in the SEC playing powder puff schedules does not merit an instant pass through to the BCS title game if teams like USC are stepping up and playing ranked non-conference teams on the road every year.

So Mr. Miles I am calling you and the SEC out. Of course you want to knock down USC anyway you can, they are the model franchise and the team to beat year in and year out since Pete Carroll got through his first season as coach. They walked on down to Louisiana and stole Joe McKnight right out from under your nose, they go to Michigan and take top recruits from that stae and go to NJ and take them from there. They run an NFL style defense and offense. They have numerous coaches on their staff with NFL experience. They are plain and simple the team to beat. The only way to knock them down is to attack the Pac-10. Well the Pac-10 has only seen two undefeated teams run through that conference in the last 40 years and the SEC has seen 4 teams go undefeated. The SEC is hiring NFL coaches to take over some of the underperforming teams in the league or hiring a Ty Willingham who has always been successful and simply took a bad rap at Notre Dame. You saw what Weis did with Ty’s players. The Pac-10 is on the rise and the SEC is going to get passed much like the nation passed the Big 10 (reason for an entire other blog on why the Big Ten does not understand the new dynamics of college football).

I am begging and praying that USC faces the SEC winner in the BCS game and I am hoping it is LSU so we can go toe to toe, match up strength and speed and coaching and smash it out. I know what the outcome will be and nothing you face in the SEC or the Sun Belt or Conference USA will prepare you for the Trojans. Les…Thanks for the bulletin board material in July. I hope it comes back to haunt you.

Flash Flash

July 5, 2007 Posted by | BCS, Big Ten, Florida, Football, Les Miles, LSU, LSU Tigers, Mississippi, NCAA, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Pac-10, Pete Carroll, SEC, Sports, USC, USC Trojans, Virginia Tech | Leave a comment