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Posts Tagged ‘Cam Newton

Reflecting on Cam Newton; Remembering Barry Sanders

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As you might imagine with my insistence on talking about Player of the Year instead of MVP when looking at the NBA, I don’t like to take stock on what athletes accomplish until season’s end.  So I held off really evaluating Cam Newton‘s accomplishments until after the National Championship.  That game came and went, and I started putting Newton up against the guy who I consider college football’s gold standard in recent years, Vince Young.

Cam Newton vs Vince Young

Briefly, Newton’s got the bigger stats over all, but part of that is simply a decision by Auburn to focus more around Newton than Texas did with Young.  This increased focus around one running quarterback is part of a general trend, and why I’ve previously said it’s unreasonable to expect a typical star running back to match the impact of someone like Newton.  If you go back and look at the numbers for the Tommie Fraziers and Michael Vicks of the world, it’s amusing to look at how small they are compared to the Newtons, Youngs, and Tim Tebows.

Auburn was more reliant on Newton than Texas on Young, but Texas’ dominance was significantly greater.  Auburn was really quite lucky to go undefeated, Texas was not.  Given that, and Young’s two amazing bowl performances, I still lean toward Young as the more accomplished college player.

What these comparisons really got me thinking about though was Barry Sanders at Oklahoma State.  Hopefully those who saw my previous rant about the relative impotence of running backs in college football knew that Sanders is in his own category.  Still, the more I think about Sanders, the more his superiority over EVERYONE, quarterbacks included, is glaring.

Barry Sanders, Greatest of All Time Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Matt Johnson

January 12, 2011 at 12:50 pm

6 Thoughts from Auburn vs Oregon

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1. Great game.  One of the best national championship games we’ve seen in recent years.

2. Disappointed to see a game get decided on a play like Dyer’s big run.  Oregon has no right to complain that it was a bad call, but there’s a clear reality that such a play is not something that can be replicated reliably by the team that benefitted from it.  Meanwhile, from the Oregon players’ perspective, clearly if there was no fear of being called for personal fouls, Dyer gets taken down.  It’s only the bizarre context of football with fears of being incorrectly seen as malicious that allowed Auburn to benefit here, and that’s a shame.

3. I was really glad Oregon got that last touchdown.  Not simply because it made the game more competitive, but because it helped damp down some of the silly narrative implying that Auburn was simply in a different league than Oregon.  The Cowherds of the world are still saying Auburn was clearly the better team, but until the last fluky drive, Oregon had gained more yards, and could’ve been up a couple touchdowns if this had broken slightly different in the red zone.

4. Cam Newton was still valuable for Auburn, but I was disappointed.   Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Matt Johnson

January 11, 2011 at 10:13 pm

You Damn Well Better Give Cam Newton the Heisman

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Okay, first things first.  Cam Newton still has to play the SEC Championship game there – so this post is in some ways premature.  I write it because:

1) Newton’s so far out in front of everyone else now, it’s hard to imagine anything could possibly justify considering him other than the most outstanding player in the country.

2)  People are actually, and ridiculously, telling voters to NOT vote for Newton.

Cam Newton is Very Good

First, a refresher on point (1)…

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