On April 2, 2013, I said this:
Over the next few weeks I will be dropping these lists with as much commentary as I can scrape together from the powers that be and will let you all tell us just how wrong we are.
Somewhere around September (Note: I named this series, Spring-ing to the Top, which was both terrible and funny because I finished it much later than Spring) I realized I didn't really finish this entire series, but I have enough of these finished that I can kill some time with football as the basketball fans go crazy over the greatness that is Illinois at Nebraska. For those of you who were not around when I kicked this all off - at a time when the SBN B1G Twitter account was throwing shade towards the SBN SEC Twitter account - I and whichever bunch of writers who decided to indulge my email requests for help, decided on five or so players we thought would be the best five at each position group in the upcoming season. That was a real long sentence. TL;DR, OTE writers choose good players.
Then I did a Q&A and a meme was started... So, let's do another Q&A and make that awful decision to look at our previews. Mainly because I want to talk about football outside of recruiting. I'm sick of recruiting. Let's do this.
Jesse, how does it feel to be idiots who put [insert your team's player here] over [insert one of our choices here]? Do you even watch football?
Similar to how we started things out last year, we were most definitely not spot on as we could have been. However, injuries happen y'all. Since that time, Ted has left us and we're now biding our time watching the Olympics. How are those two things relevant to the question at hand? They aren't. I'm just sad that I can actually answer, "Do I even watch football?" with no right now. Football is gone. Everything is meaningless (until - spoiler - I start waxing poetic about College Baseball... just you wait everybody. It's going to be awesome.)
Jesse, should I just assume you're not going to rank every position and every player and show how things should have been?
Yes. Mainly because these are reviews which are much less fun than previews. Plus, we've gone over our MVP's and such already. Oh, and we did some awesome post-mortem pieces because our site is awesome. In fact, considering our football watching habits, we deserve bonus points. Kind of like how my friends spot me letters in HORSE.
Jesse, why didn't you include Maryland and Rutgers?
This Spring, when I do everything over again, we'll be sifting through 14 teams. I don't know how I feel about that.
So that was a quick revisit down the questions you'll have... Let's look through who we ranked.
Was this our best prediction? There sure is a strong argument for it. Braxton Miller won offensive player of the year, was first team B1G QB, won a bunch of other awards, was a darkhorse Heisman candidate, and did happen to lead his team to the B1G Championship game undefeated. Sure, the ending was mired in injury and left Urban with the bad taste of stale pizza in his mouth, but I'm going to say we were right on this one
Arbitrary Grade: A+, but these are athlete grades. We get graded on a curve most of the time.
2. Taylor Martinez
Let's talk about things that were closer to Taylor Martinez being the No. 2 QB this year.
- My cat losing weight... She's really fat and is getting fatter. Trust me. This is a big deal.
- Justin Bieber becoming anything other than his smarmy little annoying self.
- Craig James becoming a legitimate politician not mired in dead hooker scandals.
- Me watching football - allegedly.
3. Kain Colter
Colter is somewhat of an enigma to me. Sure, he had injury issues as well, and honestly, when you pull up the stats, he wasn't awful. However, would any of you list him as the third best QB in the conference? Put another way, who would you exactly want on the field for you in light of who else was in the conference? Basically, this was another swing and a miss. Adding to our good friend Salt Creek's misfortune - after he jinxed the Wildcats with projecting them as B1G winners - and to the misfortune of Northwestern fan's livers, was just a bad year up front. I feel bad for Colter, but that's how these things work I suppose.
Grade: D, but he's from Northwestern and that's a hard school, so it's really like a high B anywhere else.
So let's do that really annoying compare QB1 and QB2 thing for a moment, shall we?
In conference play:
QB1: 150/244, 2159 Yards, 8.8 YPA, 14/3 TD/INT and 483 rushing yards with 11 TD
QB2: 158/263, 2012 Yards, 7.7 YPA, 15/5 TD/INT and 17 rushing yards with 1 TD
Obviously we're talking Gardner as QB1 here, but the second is Connor Cook who actually landed second team All-B1G. Now, I'm not saying Gardner is necessarily better than Cook, but at least Cook had an O-Line. If you would have told me that line was Gardner's line, I'd have expected a much better season. Unfortunately Michigan forgot how to run the football this year.
Anyhow, I'm not sure Gardner wasn't properly slated on this list. I'm going to go with it and give us a good grade and you can argue with me later.
Grade: B, because I'm the teacher here and you can all deal with it.
5. Indiana Quarterbacks
So here was Ted's quote on Indiana QBs going into the season:
Tre Roberson is going to be the third best QB in the conference behind Miller and Colter when it's all said and done. You heard it here first.
//inhales more glue
Honestly, I don't know if you can say we did good or bad here. Obviously Indiana QB's were part of an impressive offensive onslaught that did work this season. In fact, since we cheated and graded them as a group, there is a strong argument we put them too low, but at the same time, no one QB stood out as the greatest. It's a great system and Indiana was *this* close to a bowl. We can blame the defense some more if it makes Hoosier fans happy.
Grade: B-, but really it's because I didn't read the essay and am going on past history. Seems fair.
So how should we have ranked everyone? That's for you to decide. Vote who was the biggest miss and be looking for more as the long winter keeps on. But hey, SPRING IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER!!!