Offensive Line Play Key in SEC

Offensive Line Play Key in SEC
February 7, 2012, 1:04 pm
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Urban Meyer is recruiting at Ohio St. with the same passion he had at Florida.

Withsigning day behind us we can take a breath an unwind a bit before springfootball starts next month. Some schools have already had junior days whichgive them a first look at 2013 recruits. There is still some recruiting leftwith some guys falling through the cracks and junior college players looking toland somewhere. The guy that caused the most noise was a former SEC coach inUrban Meyer at Ohio State. The ex-Gator coachbreached a code that apparently existed among Big Ten coaches. All I can say isthat Meyer won't break any rules but he will use every avenue he can to get thebest players. I am sure the SEC coaches are glad he's in the Big Ten now.Speakingof the Big Ten the conference that once opposed all playoffs is looking athaving one using the BCS Standings and home sites for the final four. I lovethis idea because it protects all the bowl games and their traditional ties.The top four in the BCS play each other at the higher ranked team. Thechampionship is up for bid much like the Super Bowl. I like this better thanthe plus one model and better than any dual hosting scenario for the BCS.What's interesting about this is the Big Ten has not been in the final foursince 2007, but dominated it prior to that. Let's look at some examples of howthis would have worked out.2011-12:Oklahoma Stateat AlabamaStanford at LSU2008-9:Texas at FloridaAlabama at Oklahoma2006-7:Michigan at Florida LSU at Ohio St.2004-5Auburn at OklahomaTexas at USCWowsome really great games in terrific venues.Under this scenario Oklahoma State, Texas, Michigan and Auburn would have a chanceto prove their worthiness after being left out in the current situation.Remember Texas beat Oklahomain 2008 and Auburnwent unbeaten in the SEC in 2004.Insidethe Numbers-Alabama had the bestrecruiting according to the web and Ole Miss the worst.-9programs in the top 25 and 1314 in the top 50.-Thestate of Georgia producedthe most signees in the SEC (followed by FloridaandTexas).-Florida, Alabama,Georgia along with newcomers Texas A&M and Missouri all signed at least one five star prospect.-Mississippi State signed the most prospects with 28.-Ole Miss signed the least amount of prospects with 17.
OffensiveLine Play in the SECThe Crimson Tide had the best line in the SEC at protecting the quarterback.
Protectingthe quarterback is an important key to success. Even in the SEC where runningball is important, protecting your signal caller and keeping him upright winsyou football game. The top three teams at protecting the QB in conference playwere Alabama, LSU and Arkansas, Go Figure. I. The four gamesagainst each other the winning team had 12 sacks. The Hogs gave up six to Bamaand LSU but only 8 in their other six games. At the other end of the spectrumthere are some teams who needed to address the offensive line play this offseason. Ole Miss was a likely candidate considering their season but Florida, MississippiState and Auburn all need improved line play to get tothe top of the SEC. Those three teams combined to give up 66 sacks inconference play. Between the three schools they signed 13 offensive linemen onFeb 1st.TheTop Five BCS Schools in Sacks Allowed in 20111.USC-8 sacks allowed2.Boise St.-8 sacks allowed3.Texas A&M-9 sacks allowed4.Stanford-11sacks allowed5. Oklahoma-11 sacks allowed
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