It's Not Plagiarism If You Link To It is BHGP's regular news roundup. Send all tips to any of the email addresses at the bottom of the page. But preferably not all of them at once. We usually end up laughing at people who do that.
Well, at least it's early: After the 2010 NFL draft, we were cautiously optimistic about the fates of all the Hawkeyes who were drafted this spring. Bryan Bulaga's finally healthy, Amari Spievey and Pat Angerer wreck fools, A.J. Edds and Tony Moeaki are physically ready to step onto an NFL field on day 1, and Kyle Calloway is very large. Y'know, optimism with a healthy dollop of homeriffic sauce.
The thing about that, though, uh... well, let's just go down the list.
- Bryan Bulaga: Bulaga was drafted to eventually be the Packers' long-term solution at left tackle--perhaps with a season or two at right tackle while Chad Clifton's career wound down, but no more than that. Aaaaand Bulaga's already been moved to guard. It's not wholly discouraging, however; current LG Daryn Colledge is not very good at professional football, and Mike McCarthy indicated that this is more of a "let's get Bulaga on the field however we can" situation than a "well, that whole 'tackle' idea was pretty stupid" statement by the Green Bay coaching staff. And besides, Bryan Bulaga started at guard at Iowa too, because at Iowa, every offensive lineman plays guard.
- Pat Angerer: Pat Angerer is actually having a solid preseason. He picked up two sacks in the course of three plays during a preseason game last week, and the Stampede Blue boys have taken a shining to him. Angerer's still at third string, but barring injury or an upsurge in lousy practice play, he'll be given a chance to prove himself in due time.
- Amari Spievey: We really thought Detroit was going to enjoy the Amari Spievey era. Thus far, "enjoy" might not be the right word. From MLive.com and Pride of Detroit:
The Detroit Lions' scouting department believes the third-round draft pick has a lot of ability and can be a productive player. The coaching staff thinks otherwise.
Even Amari Spievey, who had been banged up, got into the game in the second half (and proceeded to get chewed out by Gunther Cunningham after Antonio Brown blew by him for a TD.)
- A.J. Edds: The worst off of the bunch; shredded his ACL a few weeks ago. Rookie season's over.
- Tony Moeaki: The consensus about Moeaki was that he had the physical talent to start in the NFL, but health was a near-constant concern. And sure enough, he was healthy when he showed up to Kansas City, so--oh, forget that:
TE Tony Moeaki has been the biggest disappointment of the Chiefs 2010 draft class because of injuries that have kept him off the practice field. In the off-season, it was a stomach ailment during the off-season program and then he tweaked his right ankle/foot in camp and that cost him 10 days. Moeaki had the same kind of problems at the University of Iowa.
- Kyle Calloway: The knock on Calloway was his lack of athleticism, but we figured that had to be just a little overblown, part of the clutter of noise that surrounds player evaluation but that doesn't matter quite as much when the games actually begin. Uh, still just a bit of a concern:
I did watch one extended drill in which the linemen were lined up in a cage, in an effort to keep them from standing upright at the snap. Basically, it was a leverage drill. I watched that drill to see explosion out of the stance and hand punch, and the most impressive players there were Andy Levitre and, oddly, Andre Ramsey. I wasn't particularly fond of Jamon Meredith's hand use. Demetrius Bell looked super fluid firing out of his stance. Kyle Calloway was the last lineman to rotate through on every drill, and is by far the least athletic lineman on the team.
That was on August 5, and Buffalo Rumblings hasn't said anything good about Calloway since.
Oh well. They're all still young.
There goes the Big Ten Network, whispering sweet nothings into our ear... and it sounds good: Everybody knows this 2010 Iowa team isn't without its flaws; losing Angerer and Edds to the draft stinks, and who knows what the backfield's going to look like by the middle of the season. But those are generally trivial concerns next to the offensive line, which is one of Iowa's smallest in the Kirk Ferentz era and returns precious few starts from last season. There's one beast in Riley Reiff and, frankly, four reasons we're keeping our fingers crossed.
But the BTN crew seems to disagree, after seeing Iowa practice during their tour of the Big Ten earlier. And here's what Howard Griffith and Gerry Dinardo had to say, according to Scott Dochterman:
"Maybe there are questions on offensive line. I don’t necessarily see them," Griffith said. "When you look at their system and what they do, I think they’re going to be just fine at that position. (Adam) Gettis, the right guard, I think is going to be an outstanding player for them. I think they’ve got everything in place to make some things happen for them this year.
"I saw a lot of talent. I see them run a lot of plays over and over again. That’s a good thing," said DiNardo, a former All-American lineman at Notre Dame. "Their skill set is constantly worked over and over. Kirk (Ferentz) is obviously involved because of his offensive line background."
Now, look. It's obviously in the BTN's (and the BXI's) best interests to talk up Iowa's line instead of cast genuine doubt on their ability to perform this season. They want fans in that state of ubiquitous summer optimism, not marking games off as losses.
But at the same time, that is the reality of the situation in the camps themselves; everyone is still undefeated, and there is the chance that any offensive line, or any unit, on any team, will or won't click. Some are more likely than others, but this is still college football, one of the least predictable* sports game-to-game and year-to-year. And if the BTN analysts are right about Iowa's line being better than we've given them credit for, well, look out.
Miscellaneous preseason profiles: Dochterman fluffs Mike Daniels, Morehouse fluffs Jeff Tarpinian, and the UI propaganda site fluffs a few freshmen. Still haven't looked "fluff" up on Urban Dictionary. I'm sure we're fine.
4 FAST 4 FURIOUZ
You're standing right now with nine delegates from 100 tailgates. And there's over a hundred more. That's 20,000 hardcore Hawkeye fans. Forty-thousand, counting the Magic Bus crowd, and twenty-thousand more, not organized, but ready to drink: 60,000 tailgaters! Now, there ain't but 20,000 police in the whole town! Can you dig it? Can you dig it??? Can you dig iiiiitttt!!!!
Iowa has multiple players on 11W's list of the best players Ohio State will face this season. How many players? Which ones? Where on their list? Therein lies the mystery, reader!
PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT: If you're going to pass out naked in a random stranger's house--and let's be honest, readers, we're not putting that past most of you--your response to the inevitable arrival of the police should not be assuming a three-point stance and charging said policemen; that will get you tased, thrown in jail, and kicked off your football team. TMYK!
And finally, A Beastie Boys and Will Smith mashup about outer space? Yes indeed:
BONUS MASHUP COVERAGE IF YOU'RE TOO COOL FOR THE NEW WILLENIUM: Eazy-E and Johnny Cash.
*Just so you know, I can't back this up at all. But it sounds right.