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ASK CFN Part 2 - Is Johnny Manziel a pro QB?

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Jan 19, 2013


Part 2 of the latest ASK CFN. Is Johnny Manziel a pro QB?

2013 ASK CFN

January 19 - No Manti 
 

E-mail Pete Fiutak
@ColFootballNews 

Fire over your questions, comments and baskets of mini-muffins to fiucfn@gmail.com, or you can tweet them to me @ColFootballNews. I might not be able to answer them all, but I promise they're all read.  

- Part 1 - ALL MANTI. Several different angles on Te'o.

Q: Enough of this Te’o crap … give me something for 2013. Let’s get the season going already! Give me a team to keep an eye on! Something!
- Dan M.

A: Absolutely. We’ll come out with our Pre-Preseason Rankings next week, but in the meantime, my No. 1 team to “keep an eye on” this year, at least this offseason, is Texas, because there’s absolutely no excuse whatsoever for the program to not turn it back around and be in the BCS championship mix.

While it hasn’t worked out over the last few years to equate a relatively easy schedule with success at Texas, it’s hard to argue with a slate that has Ole Miss, Kansas State and Oklahoma State at home, a week off before going to TCU, and a week off to rest up and prepare for the final two games against Texas Tech and Baylor. There’s a tough-looking road game at BYU, and Oklahoma is always Oklahoma, but the Longhorns are beyond loaded with a who’s who of former four-and-five star prep talents maturing at the same time.

Ten starters are back on offense – including the entire line – and eight starters return on defense. On talent alone this deserves to be a preseason top ten team, if not top five, but after the recent clunkers, it’s hard to buy the idea that Mack Brown will finally get his team to play up to its talent level again.

Q: I’m so sick of your SEC-loving site. Can’t you give anyone else any credit for anything? The conference is so overrated, and this bowl season and Louisville proved it. GO CARDINALS! - K.R.

A: We would love – L-O-V-E IT – if some of the other conferences would step up their respective games to become true challengers to the SEC as an overall league, but the gap is widening.

I’m sorry, but it really is the SEC’s college football world and everyone else is just renting space.

I’m not saying that Louisville didn’t make the Gators look ridiculous, and I’m not taking away the Sugar Bowl victory in any way, but even with Will Muschamp wetting the bed by going for all of those unnecessary onside kicks, and despite a horrendous game from Jeff Driskel, Florida was still in the game late. Give the Cardinals credit for making Florida play bad, however, it’s not like they obliterated everyone in their path and then rose up to the occasion when they got their shot – like Boise State, TCU and Utah in recent years.

UofL got blasted by Syracuse, lost in three overtimes to UConn, and struggled to get by a winless Southern Miss, a lousy FIU and a miserable South Florida. Meanwhile, Florida beat LSU and Texas A&M, blew up South Carolina, and rolled on the road at Florida State by 11.

Either the Sugar was a bit of an aberration, or the Cardinals didn’t play as well as they should’ve throughout the regular season. With that said, it’ll be interesting to see if that game really is a jumping off point, because with a cheese-whiz schedule and a loaded team, there’s no reason to not come up with another BCS-caliber season.

Q: Why does EVERYONE in the NFL seem to want Chip Kelly? College coaches always stink in the NFL and Kelly’s offense is going to get everyone killed. - Husker Dave

A: Kelly was a hot commodity for his style more than for his success at Oregon. He’ll incorporate some of the running plays for the quarterback like he did in Eugene, but for the most part, he’s going to run a pro-style offense and speed things up a bit. Remember, New England tapped Kelly for ideas on how to improve the tempo, and the league is becoming even faster-paced and more specialized around mobile quarterbacks than ever before – even with three statues quarterbacking in the championship games. Kelly will adapt and adjust, but I’m all over LeSean McCoy in my fantasy draft next year.

To another part of your question, former college coaches haven’t been all that bad at the next level lately. Tom Coughlin won a few Super Bowls. Pete Carroll and Jim Harbaugh have been terrific, and Greg Schiano wasn’t miserable with Tampa Bay in his first year. As long as the talent is in place, college coaches can do just fine in the NFL.

Q: I’m not saying my Huskies would’ve beaten Florida State, but I would’ve liked to have seen what would’ve happened if Dave Doeren had stuck around to be able to coach the Orange Bowl. Why do all the coaches take off for their new jobs without finishing off the season? Don’t you want to finish what you started? - Terry B., NIU ‘87

A: There’s no way to do this right. Once a coach is taking over a new gig, it requires 24/7 attention to get together a staff, a recruiting class, and start changing things around. It’s not fair to the players on either side to have a coach who’s half in and half out. The players on the jilted team have to wonder if their coach is thinking about the new job, meanwhile, the wife and family are taking away some of the attention as they figure out how to uproot everything and start a new life. The players on the new team want things to be better, and they want the coach and the direction to be in place by the time the offseason workouts kick in. I fall into the Bo Schembechler “I want a Michigan man coaching Michigan” camp. The second you saw Doeren put on a new hat and say Go Pack, he wasn’t your head coach anymore.

Q: Is Brent Musburger going to get fired? How long will ESPN put up with him if he keeps talking about how hot women are? It seems like its an embarrassment now every time he does a broadcast. - I.G.

A: This is such an idiotic non-controversy – KATHERINE WEBB IS A FORMER MISS ALABAMA AND NOW A SI SWIMSUIT MODEL. IT’S HER JOB TO BE HOT.

As an unapologetic and unabashed Musburger fan, I actually thought he was hilarious – he wasn’t saying anything that almost everyone watching wasn’t also thinking at the time. It’s not like he disrespected her in any way, and he wasn’t even being creepy like some suggested he was. He saw that AJ McCarron’s girlfriend was beautiful and ranted about how good it was to be an Alabama quarterback - the bit absolutely killed. In terms of the Holly Rowe being “really smokin’ tonight,” he was poking the bear. The entire flap has been a joke, and Brent is known for being able to roll with the moment.

Q: Is Johnny Manziel a pro quarterback? Thanks! - Dave H.

A: Too … many … Texas … A&M … booster … jokes.

I’m guessing you mean to ask if Manziel is going to eventually become an NFL quarterback. Sure, he’ll be in the league, but can he start? Remember, it’s really, REALLY hard to become a starting NFL quarterback. Think about it, how many job openings are there for a No. 1 quarterback right now? Arizona, Kansas City, NY Jets … and?

It all depends on whether or not he improves as a pocket passer. While everyone loves the idea of RG3, the knock on him is now louder than ever that a mobile quarterback can’t last in today’s NFL for an entire season unless he’s bulked up. Cam Newton and Colin Kaepernick are mobile AND huge, and even though Andrew Luck is known for being more of a pure pro-style passer, he can run, too. Manziel’s running ability won’t matter at the next level, because for all the nice things that coaches like to do with the read-option, you still need a guy who can drop back and sling it around the yard.

Russell Wilson is breaking the height barrier, and while he’s a runner when he needs to be, his yards come when the plays break down. Also, he was one of the most accurate and efficient quarterbacks in college football history. Manziel is a little taller than Wilson, but he’s not the same pure passer. As long as Manziel develops into a passer who runs, rather than more of a “baller” or a runner who throws, yeah, the potential is there to start at the next level.

- Part 1 - ALL MANTI. Several different angles on Te'o.