Archive for March, 2012

Updated Super Bowl XLVII Odds!!!

March 20th, 2012 No comments

A couple of weeks ago I gave you the odds to win the 2012 National Championship courtesy of Bovada. In today’s blog I will give you Bovada’s updated odds to win Super Bowl XLVII after yesterday’s news that Peyton Manning will be a Denver Bronco next year.

I must stress that while does not affiliate itself with gambling, I do think it is interesting to see how Vegas is examining the upcoming season.

Also make sure you are checking out my updated 2012 Draft Preview with a Top 10 position by position outlook and the top performers at each position during each drill at the combine.

Don’t forget to check out our Spring Central section to get 2012 schedules, coaching changes, who’s back/who’s not and all the NFL Draft early entrants.


Bovada Odds to Win 2013 Super Bowl
XLVII @ Superdome-New Orleans, LA
Sunday, February 3, 2013

Rank Team Odds
1 Green Bay Packers 13/2
2 New England Patriots 15/2
3 New Orleans Saints 10/1
4 Denver Broncos 12/1
4 Houston Texans 12/1
6 San Francisco 49ers 14/1
7 Baltimore Ravens 15/1
7 Philadelphia Eagles 15/1
9 New York Giants 16/1
10 Pittsburgh Steelers 18/1
11 Dallas Cowboys 20/1
12 San Diego Chargers 22/1
13 Chicago Bears 25/1
13 Detroit Lions 25/1
15 Atlanta Falcons 28/1
16 New York Jets 30/1
17 Carolina Panthers 40/1
17 Cincinnati Bengals 40/1
17 Miami Dolphins 40/1
17 Seattle Seahawks 40/1
21 Arizona Cardinals 50/1
21 Kansas City Chiefs 50/1
21 Tennessee Titans 50/1
21 Washington Redskins 50/1
25 Oakland Raiders 60/1
26 Buffalo Bills 75/1
26 St Louis Rams 75/1
26 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 75/1
29 Indianapolis Colts 100/1
29 Jacksonville Jaguars 100/1
29 Minnesota Vikings 100/1
32 Cleveland Browns 150/1


1. Green Bay 13/2-The Super Bowl 45 champs and LY’s 15-1 season make the Pack clearly one of the early favorites and why not with QB Rodgers back behind center and of course they have done a solid job in recent drafts.

2. New England 15/2-Even with a loss in Super Bowl 46, the Patriots are one of the early favorites to capture their first title since 2004. In recent years they have retooled their defense and added a couple of outstanding TE’s and you can never count out Brady and Belichick.

3. New Orleans 10/1-The Saints arguably had one of the best offenses in the history of the NFL last season. While they had a tough playoff road loss to the 49ers, with Brees and Co back expect more of the same high-flying Saints and I’m sure they would love nothing more than to play the Super Bowl in their home stadium.

4. Denver Broncos 12/1-The Broncos were my inspiration to write this blog today as just a few weeks ago they were at least 50/1 odds at many places. Now with the addition of QB Manning, the Broncos probably have their best chance at winning to the Super Bowl since John Elway was on the sidelines more than a decade ago.

4. Houston Texans 12/1-The Texans won their first playoff game in franchise history last year and did so with their #3 QB Yates. With a healthy QB Schaub throwing to WR Johnson, a great RB in Foster and one of the NFL’s best defenses, Houston may become perennial playoff winner.

Top 50 Highest Paid College HC’s!

March 15th, 2012 No comments

I am now fully entrenched writing my 18th edition of my college preview magazine and awhile back finished writing all the coaches sections for each of the 124 schools.

One thing that has clearly changed in the past decade plus has been the proliferation of the coaches’ salaries and in 2011 a record 32 college coaches made $2,000,000 or more for the year.

I find it fascinating to see what each of the coaches make per year and believe me much of it is well deserved when you consider the hours they put in and the constant demands by alums all over the country.

Below is a chart of the top 50 highest paid college coaches and the salary information was provided by the USA Today football coaches salary database which combine both guaranteed and non-guaranteed incomes. (Private universities such as USC and Notre Dame did not reveal what they specifically paid their coaches.)

Top 50 Highest Paid College Coaches

School Conf Head Coach Univ Non-Univ Total Pay Max Bonus
Texas Big 12 Mack Brown $5,192,500 $1,000 $5,193,500 $850,000
Alabama SEC Nick Saban $4,683,333 $150,000 $4,833,333 $700,000
Oklahoma Big 12 Bob Stoops $4,075,000 $0 $4,075,000 $819,500
LSU SEC Les Miles $3,751,000 $105,417 $3,856,417 $700,000
Iowa Big Ten Kirk Ferentz $3,785,000 $0 $3,785,000 $1,750,000
Arkansas SEC Bobby Petrino $3,635,000 $3,000 $3,638,000 $650,000
Auburn SEC Gene Chizik $3,500,000 $0 $3,500,000 $1,200,000
Michigan Big Ten Brady Hoke $3,254,000 $0 $3,254,000 $500,000
Florida SEC Will Muschamp $3,221,000 $0 $3,221,000 $450,000
Georgia SEC Mark Richt $2,811,400 $128,400 $2,939,800 $525,000
South Carolina SEC Steve Spurrier $2,800,000 $28,000 $2,828,000 $1,000,000
Oregon PAC-12 Chip Kelly $2,800,000 N/A $2,800,000 $1,035,000
Nebraska Big Ten Bo Pelini $2,775,000 N/A $2,775,000 $1,000,000
Mississippi SEC Houston Nutt $2,756,250 $15,500 $2,771,750 $715,000
Florida St ACC Jimbo Fisher $2,750,000 $0 $2,750,000 $725,000
Missouri Big 12 Gary Pinkel $2,700,000 $0 $2,700,000 $850,000
Wisconsin Big Ten Bret Bielema $2,500,000 $98,186 $2,598,186 $400,000
Mississippi St SEC Dan Mullen $2,500,000 $0 $2,500,000 $650,000
Georgia Tech ACC Paul Johnson $2,369,000 $0 $2,369,000 $1,125,000
Tennessee SEC Derek Dooley $2,293,391 $37,200 $2,330,591 $475,000
Virginia Tech ACC Frank Beamer $2,243,000 $85,000 $2,328,000 $407,500
Louisville Big East Charlie Strong $2,300,000 $5,000 $2,305,000 $500,000
California PAC-12 Jeff Tedford $2,300,000 $0 $2,300,000 $255,000
Rutgers Big East Greg Schiano $2,195,000 $101,969 $2,296,969 $530,000
Wake Forest ACC Jim Grobe $2,275,545 N/A $2,275,545 N/A
Washington PAC-12 Steve Sarkisian $2,250,000 $0 $2,250,000 $1,075,000
Texas A&M Big 12 Mike Sherman $2,200,000 $1,000 $2,201,000 $350,000
Kansas Big 12 Turner Gill $2,100,000 $1,200 $2,101,200 $419,158
Oklahoma St Big 12 Mike Gundy $2,100,000 N/A $2,100,000 $500,000
Texas Tech Big 12 Tommy Tuberville $2,050,000 $9,000 $2,059,000 $1,025,000
TCU Mt. West Gary Patterson $2,018,362 N/A $2,018,362 N/A
Maryland ACC Randy Edsall $2,013,440 $0 $2,013,440 $875,000
Kansas St Big 12 Bill Snyder $1,925,000 $0 $1,925,000 $455,000
Michigan St Big Ten Mark Dantonio $1,918,000 $0 $1,918,000 $650,000
NC State ACC Tom O’Brien $932,950 $945,000 $1,877,950 $750,000
Clemson ACC Dabo Swinney $1,833,333 $13,000 $1,846,333 $775,000
Virginia ACC Mike London $1,780,000 $14,679 $1,794,679 $715,000
Duke ACC David Cutcliffe $1,762,895 N/A $1,762,895 N/A
Illinois Big Ten Ron Zook $1,750,000 $3,500 $1,753,500 $65,650
SMU CUSA June Jones $1,727,082 N/A $1,727,082 N/A
Kentucky SEC Joker Phillips $1,701,339 $1,150 $1,702,489 $1,105,000
Minnesota Big Ten Jerry Kill $1,700,000 N/A $1,700,000 $875,000
USF Big East Skip Holtz $1,700,000 $0 $1,700,000 $350,000
Utah PAC-12 Kyle Whittingham $1,700,000 N/A $1,700,000 $740,000
Baylor Big 12 Art Briles $1,549,396 N/A $1,549,396 N/A
Navy Ind. Ken Niumatalolo $1,538,190 N/A $1,538,190 N/A
Boise St Mt. West Chris Petersen $1,525,000 $0 $1,525,000 $170,000
Arizona St PAC-12 Dennis Erickson $1,500,000 $3,000 $1,503,000 $1,800,000
Connecticut Big East Paul Pasqualoni $1,500,000 N/A $1,500,000 $114,583
West Virginia Big East Dana Holgorsen $1,490,000 $0 $1,490,000 $600,000

Read more…

Phil Steele’s 2012 NFL Mock Draft Version 2.0 and Top 50 Overall Players

March 10th, 2012 No comments

Welcome to my second mock draft of the football season. I usually wait until after the combine and some of the pro days are complete to get a better grasp of where players will be going in the upcoming NFL Draft, which is just six weeks away.

A word of caution, remember these are not necessarily the order of the top players (check my updated top position by position breakdown for that info) but where they fit into that organization’s needs. I will have at least two more mock drafts in the upcoming weeks before the draft and naturally with trades impossible to predict, these do not take them into consideration, which could effect the entire draft but like I predicted in my first mock draft, it looks like the Redskins will trade with St. Louis and get the #2 pick.

Rk Team Player and Position School
1. Indianapolis Andrew Luck, QB Stanford
2. Washington (from STL) Robert Griffin III, QB Baylor
3. Minnesota Matt Kalil, OT USC
4. Cleveland Trent Richardson, RB Alabama
5. Tampa Bay Morris Claiborne, CB LSU
6. St Louis (from Wash) Justin Blackmon, WR Oklahoma St
7. Jacksonville Quinton Coples, DE North Carolina
8. Miami Riley Reiff, OT Iowa
9. Carolina Dontari Poe, DT Memphis
10. Buffalo Courtney Upshaw, OLB Alabama
11. Kansas City Jonathan Martin, OT Stanford
12. Seattle Melvin Ingram, DE South Carolina
13. Arizona David DeCastro, OG Stanford
14. Dallas Mark Barron, S Alabama
15. Philadelphia Fletcher Cox, DT Mississippi St
16. NY Jets Luke Kuechly, ILB Boston College
17. Cincinnati Dre Kirkpatrick, CB Alabama
18. San Diego Nick Perry, OLB USC
19. Chicago Michael Floyd, WR Notre Dame
20. Tennessee Whitney Mercilus Illinois
21. Cincinnati Cordy Glenn, OG Georgia
22. Cleveland Kendall Wright, WR Baylor
23. Detroit Janoris Jenkins, CB North Alabama
24. Pittsburgh Dont’a Hightower, ILB Alabama
25. Denver Michael Brockers, DT LSU
26. Houston Rueben Randle, WR LSU
27. New England Andre Branch, OLB/DE Clemson
28. Green Bay Peter Konz, C Wisconsin
29. Baltimore Mike Adams, OT Ohio St
30. San Francisco Stephen Hill, WR Georgia Tech
31. New England Devon Still, DT Penn St
32. NY Giants Coby Fleener, TE Stanford


Read more…

2012 Projected AP Top 24!!!

March 2nd, 2012 1 comment

For the past several years I have projected the preseason AP Top 10 nearly six months in advance and I have correctly projected at least nine of the Top 10 teams each year. It is one of my more popular blogs in the off-season and this year with its overwhelming popularity I have decided to expand it for the first time to 24 teams! I will mention it now and I will mention it numerous times throughout today’s blog but this is NOT MY preseason Top 24 for next year, it is where I project the AP Top 24 to come out at the start of the season. I have also strategically projected 24 teams and not 25 because I feel confident that all 24 of these teams will be in the preseason Top 25 while leaving room for a wildcard team that could slip into the Top 25 due to injuries, suspensions, transfers or preseason magazine projections.

Most AP voters usually look at a couple of criteria when they evaluate a team for the upcoming season. First they look at the number of returning starters that the team has coming back particularly at the offensive skill positions. A team that returns its starting QB and a combination of its RB and WR’s is often times more highly thought of than a team that loses its starting QB but returns its entire offensive line. Similarly a team that returns most of its starters on offense but loses a lot of its defensive playmakers usually is more highly thought of than a team that returns a majority of its defensive starters but loses its skill position players on offense.

Another factor that is heavily weighted is the performance of the team in the bowl game, which undoubtedly is the lasting image of that team in the off-season. A team coming off a huge bowl win usually is more highly thought of than a team that is coming off a bowl loss regardless of what their schedule looks like for the upcoming season.

Using these criteria and a few more, I project the preseason AP Top 10 every year at the conclusion of the previous season, which in most cases is nearly six months in advance. Now as you all know, a lot can happen from now to August including injuries, suspensions, transfers, etc. If you want to see how I have performed with my Top 10 projections refer to my January 30 Blog. Also it should be noted that a couple of teams have been moved up or down to reflect what has happened since that last blog, which includes national signing day.

Now let’s take a look at this year’s projected Preseason AP Top 24 and keep in mind again these are NOT MY preseason Top 24 teams!

#24 Florida-The Gators have had two sub-par seasons finishing 8-5 and 7-6 in 2010-11 but 2nd-year HC Will Muschamp looks to have the Gators on the upswing. They return 10 starters from a defense that allowed just 299.5 ypg last year and one of their keys to their season will be if they can get better QB production from Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel. Read more…