Friday, August 05, 2005

Media Daze | by Michael

By now most have seen firsthand or read how ESPN's Mike Gottfried thought the Irish could open their season with five straight losses. Everyone's entitled to an opinion, I suppose.

Now that the dust has settled from the Pac-10, Big East, and Big Ten media days held earlier this week, let's take a very quick look to see what's going on with Gottfried's Goliaths...Pitt (9/3), Michigan (9/10), Michigan State (9/17), Washington (9/24) and Purdue (10/1).

At Pitt, Dave Wannstedt is worried about a completely revamped front seven. Even the returning starters from last year's Pitt defense (Thomas Smith, H.B. Blades, et al.) are lined up at different positions.

A two part interview with Lloyd Carr is up on Go Blue Wolverine. Steve Breaston is mentioned often and expectations are high despite an injury-riddled, inconsistent sophomore season. If he plays like he did as a freshman, it could be a long day in Ann Arbor.

That other team in Michigan is figuring out how to rebuild a defense that soared in 2003 but really struggled last year. With last year's starting CB Jaren Hayes suspended, there's some uncertainty surrounding this year's Spartan defense.

Out in Seattle, the Huskies were picked to finish last in the Pac-10 preseason poll. Is anyone really surprised?

Finally, Purdue appears to have lost two of their top recruits from last year's class. Losing Selwyn Lymon is unfortunate for them, but Purdue's been moving the ball in the air without stud receivers for years, so I think they'll manage.

0-5? Even the pessimist in me says it couldn't get any worse than 2-3.

Admittedly, it was hard not looking ahead to that sixth game against the Trojans. Their defensive line just got a little softer now that Jeff Schweiger broke his leg. He could return for the October 15th match-up in South Bend but the injury can't be making Pete Carroll's job any easier.