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By Matt McCoy
The Sporting News is out with its rankings of the top college football coaches and Ohio State's Urban Meyer is number two behind only Alabama's Nick Saban. (To see the Sporting News article, click here).
The Sporting News college football staff did the rankings but the author of the article is Matt Hayes, who you may remember, wrote the "From Champs to Chomped" piece last year ripping Meyer for leaving the Florida program in shambles. Perhaps that's why, even in an feature ranking Meyer as one of college football's elite, there's a back-handed shot at the Buckeye coach, as Hayes wrote that Meyer "ran away from Florida when it got tough."
Nonetheless, it's hard to argue with Saban being the top dog, as Alabama has won the last two national championships and Meyer at number two also seems to be a no-brainer, given the 12-0 Buckeye season as well has his two national titles while at Florida.
The rest of the Sporting News top five have Boise State's Chris Peterson at number three, Oklahoma's Bob Stoops at number four and Notre Dame's Brian Kelly at number five.
Northwestern's Pat Fitzgerald joins Meyer as Big Ten coaches in the top 10. Fitzgerald is ranked eighth. Two others are in the top 25 with Penn State's Bill O'Brien 13th and Michigan's Brady Hoke, 23rd.
Former Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema, now of Arkansas would have boosted the Big Ten profile--he's 15th--but instead, he's one of six SEC coaches in the top 25. Saban is first, with South Carolina's Steve Spurrier sixth, LSU's Les Miles ninth, Georgia's Mark Richt 12th, and Florida's Will Muschamp 24th.
Goodbye Legends and Leaders
In case you missed it over the weekend, the long rumored end of the Big Ten's 'Legends and Leaders' divisions took a step closer to reality.
A report by ESPN.com said Big Ten Presidents and Chancellors this week are expected to approve a realigned plan for the Big Ten, which will split up the schools georgraphically into East and West divisions.
What it means for Ohio State is that when Rutgers and Maryland join the league in 2014, the Buckeyes will not only be in the division with those new schools, but they will be joined, in the East, by rival Michigan. The East will also include Penn State, Michigan State and Indiana.
The West division will feature Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Wisconsin and Purdue.
I love the move. I never liked Ohio State and Michigan being in separate divisions. It was done to forge 'competitive balance' between the divisions. It left open the possibility (which may happen this year) that the two schools would meet in consecutive weeks--the regular season finale and the Big Ten title game. Starting in 2014 that cannot happen....and thank goodness. The Game is a once a year event.
The Worst of the Worst
The NBA regular season came to an end last week and TNT analyst Shaquille O'Neal produced his top five worst plays of the season. Good news if you're a CAVS fan... no Cleveland plays are included. Anyway--it's a funny and entertaining watch. Enjoy.