Sunday, August 25, 2013

Buy, Pass, Sell: Independent Edition

Two new independent programs enter the ranks in 2013, but the group has not been improved by the additions of New Mexico State and Idaho, and it's a one year deal as those two schools enter the Sun Belt in 2014. Notre Dame is back after an amazing 12-0 run that culminated in a 42-14 blow out loss to Alabama in the title game. That loss will sting, so the Irish will be playing with a renewed vengeance in 2013.


Notre Dame: It would be understandable to look at the Irish as overrated in 2013, with the loss to Alabama, the loss of Golston at QB, and the loss of Te'o on defense. The thing is, I believe that with Tommy Rees taking back the QB job, and a load of talented up and comers on defense, the Irish, even if they don't go 12-1 again, are a team worth buying into long term. Brian Kelly has never spent this many years in a row in the same place, so continuity has been embraced, even if he did flirt with the Philadelphia Eagles last winter. I will just keep on buying in until I get stung on this team.


Navy: I'd like to buy in to Navy right away, but common sense tells me to hold out for just a little bit so that I don't get stung with a bad purchase here. The schedule is loaded with mines, and there are questions at QB and along the line on offense. There are major holes at LB, and a lack of overall viable playmakers across the spectrum on the defensive side. If these situations get shored up, Navy is always a team worth a few surprises, so I will be watching closely.

BYU: I was lined up to buy into BYU for 2013, and then the injuries started mounting in camp, especially in an already thin secondary. That concerns me deeply. The schedule is loaded all over the place, including games against Texas, Boise State, Wisconsin, and Utah State, and that concerns me as well, as does a new starting QB in Taysom Hill, and there are health issues at RB as well. I am holding off on doing anything here just yet. Anything could happen.


Army: The Cadets are one of America's best rushing teams, and bring back Raymond Maples, who is the star here. They do lose four year starter Trent Steelman at QB, and trying to break in a new QB in the wishbone offense is always tricky. Steelman is a huge loss. The schedule isn't impossible to navigate, but I have a problem buying into a run heavy option football team in the modern era.

Idaho: What can we say about this abysmal program other than to say there's always rebuilding. rob Akey is out as head coach, and Paul Petrino is in, but it will be a long while before we see any results here.

New Mexico State: Rather than wait out his probable firing, DeWayne Walker quit for an NFL assistant job. That's some serious crap, but then again, so is this football program. Doug Martin takes over having never been a winning coach. I think the misery continues in Las Crucas.

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