Friday, June 15, 2007

So I'm at the grocery store...

...and I pass by the news stand and see that the Sporting News football preview is out. Now, last year I opened up the TSN preview at the exact same grocery store and started to buy it until I noticed that they had picked Ole Miss to win at Missouri...presumably because Brent Schaeffer was a 5-star QB, therefore he had to be good enough to win at lowly Missouri. I put the magazine back on the shelf. This year, I decided to give them another shot. Now, I'm a major Phil Steele snob--nobody's more accurate, more detailed, or more interesting. But I'm also a nerd, so I still buy multiple mags.

Anyway, I opened up this year's TSN and skimmed it just long enough to see that their 1st-team All-Big XII TE was Martellus Bennett. And I put the magazine back on the shelf.

Some 2006 stats:

Chase Coffman - 58 catches, 639 yards, 9 TD's
Martin Rucker - 53 catches, 511 yards, 5 TD's
Martellus Bennett - 38 catches, 497 yards, 3 TD's
And for that matter...

Brandon Pettigrew (OSU) - 24 catches, 310 yards, 4 TD's
Some career stats:

Chase Coffman (2 yrs) - 105 catches, 1141 yards, 13 TD's
Martin Rucker (3 yrs) - 119 catches, 1341 yards, 10 TD's
Martellus Bennett (2 yrs) - 56 catches, 659 yards, 6 TD's (almost exactly Coffman's 2006 numbers)
Brandon Pettigrew (2 yrs) - 35 catches, 438 yards, 5 TD's
Now...I know what you're going to say--Missouri plays in a pass-oriented offense, and ATM does not. But a) Martin Rucker played two seasons with Brad Smith--not exactly a big-time passer--and Chase Coffman played one, and b) have you seen Martin Rucker block?

Look. Pick Colt McCoy or Graham Harrell (or both) over Chase Daniel on the QB's list. Pick Nebraska to win the North over Missouri. Hell, decide that Will Franklin isn't on the league's top WR's list. All of those are up for debate. What is not up for debate is who the best two TE's in the conference are. The only thing Bennett has that Rucker/Coffman don't are 5 stars from Rivals. But these guys are all upperclassmen now. Recruiting rankings for these guys expired a while back. Brandon Pettigrew is as close (or closer) to Martellus Bennett as Bennett is to Coffman and Rucker. There is no debate here. And the surest way to assure that I never purchase your magazine again is to pretend there is.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go drown my anger in a Sub Shop sausage & kraut sandwich...something else nobody in the Big XII can match.

UPDATE, 5:54pm: A buddy of mine who owns the TSN preview called and told me that once again, Ole Miss over Mizzou is one of their upset specials. Just keep picking it till it comes true, guys.