Strength of schedule is going to likely be a key variable in the College Football Playoff equation starting this season, and conferences and schools are all taking that into consideration. That includes Florida head coach Will Muschamp, who said during the SEC meetings in Destin, Florida Tuesday the Gators may be looking to avoid games against FCS opponents in the coming years.
There is no scheduling policy in the SEC against scheduling FCS opponents, but it is a practice that some schools may look to avoid doing in order to boost strength of schedule for the individual program, but doing so would also boost the conference’s overall strength of schedule as well. That is part of the reason is mandating every school in the SEC to schedule one opponent from anther power conference. Florida meets that requirement with annual games against Florida State.
Muschamp’s quote is an interesting one considering how last season played out for the Gators. A dismal season hit a low point toward the end of the season when Florida was defeated at home by Georgia Southern, a program from the FCS that is making the move up to FBS in 2014. Muschamp also suggested he would be open to considering a neutral-site game against Miami, which has been an idea floating around recently.
Florida has one FCS opponent scheduled in upcoming years at the moment. The Gators will host Eastern Kentucky on November 22, a week before traveling to Tallahassee for the annual rivalry game against Florida State.
In the minds of some in the media and even more in the fan base, Ohio State in general and Cardale Jones specifically have been underwhelming through the first five games of the 2015 season.
Jones, in particular, has been a rather large target of much of the angst. Coming off a Cinderella-like three-game postseason run that helped OSU to a national championship, the perception is that Jones has been underwhelming and underperforming; even head coach Urban Meyer appeared to be leaning in that direction as he considered making the switch to J.T. Barrett prior to the Western Michigan win before reaffirming his commitment to the redshirt junior.
Is that perception valid? Statistically, he’s not that far off from where he was in the 2014 postseason, at least in a couple of categories.
He’s completing 61.3 percent of his passes this season compared to 59.4 percent in the games against Wisconsin, Alabama and Oregon. It was 9.9 yards per attempt in that three-game stretch last season, 8.2 in five games this season. When it comes to scoring and turning the ball over, however, that’s another matter entirely.
He threw a touchdown pass every 15 pass attempts in the 2014 postseason; this season, it’s one every 21 attempts. Even more glaring, he’s currently throwing an interception every 21 attempts as well. During the run that made him a household name, it was one pick every 37.5 throws.
So, fewer touchdowns plus more turnovers equals validation of the angst, right? Not so fast, at least as far as the college arm of Pro Football Focus goes.
A very serious allegation has triggered the latest resetting of the “Days Without An Arrest” ticker.
UCLA confirmed in a statement that Adam Searl (pictured, No. 39) has been indefinitely suspended from the football program. The move comes nearly a day after the punter was arrested on three counts of rape.
He was released a handful of hours after his arrest on a $300,000 bond.
“We have been informed of the situation involving Adam Searl, and we take these accusations very seriously,” UCLA head coach Jim Mora said in a statement. “Adam has been suspended from the team indefinitely while the legal process runs its course. Due to the ongoing police investigation, we are unable to discuss this matter further at this time.”
The arrest stems from an incident that allegedly occurred in the middle of last October, and is the result what the Los Angeles Police Department described as “an exhaustive investigation.” As for what led to the charges, here’s the Los Angeles Daily News‘ account of the alleged incident:
The victim, a student at UCLA, reported the alleged assault to the LAPD on Oct. 14, 2014. She told police that she had met the suspect outside of an off-campus house party in Westwood. They went to another residence, where she fell asleep and awoke to find him assaulting her. She was able to identify Searl following the police investigation.
Searl punted 11 times as a redshirt freshman last season. He had punted five times this season as the backup to Matt Mengel.