Gameday's here, with all kinds of notes
Is Matt Grothe the No. 21 quarterback in the country? The latest issue of The Sporting News ranks the top 60 quarterbacks in college football, and that's where they put Grothe. What's fun is they have the second-guessing already built in on the same page -- Bill Curry says Grothe should be ranked higher, and USF linebacker Tyrone McKenzie has his teammate's back: "Are you kidding me?" he tells TSN. "I've obviously played against a number of those quarterbacks, here at USF and at Iowa State, and Matt Grothe is a top-10 quarterback."
I'm not going to debate Grothe's ranking, but if I'm him, I'd be annoyed that Louisville's Hunter Cantwell is right behind him at No. 22. Who needs to be a starter for two years if all he had to do was be 6-4 and throw an occasional pass? What's a meaningful game Cantwell's ever won? Beating Middle Tennessee State two years ago? I just don't yet understand the fascination with him.
The rest of the Big East? West Virginia's Pat White is No. 1, Cincinnati's Dustin Grutzka/Tony Pike is No. 49, Connecticut's Tyler Lorenzen is No. 56, Pitt's Bill Stull is No. 62 and Syracuse's Andrew Robinson is No. 71.
The rest of the state? Florida's Tim Tebow is No. 2, Florida Atlantic's Rusty Smith is No. 11, FSU's three-headed QB is No. 49, Miami's combo of Robert Marve and Jacory Harris is No. 79, and UCF's Michael Greco is No. 101. Florida International's combo of Paul McCall and Wayne Younger is dead last at No. 120, in case you were sweating next week's USF game there.
Speaking of Sporting News, the fan voting on their site has 71 percent picking Kansas to win tonight, and a computer simulation that ran the game 10,000 times has Kansas scoring an average of one point more than the Bulls.
-- For my readers who are DirecTV customers: Why does ESPN/ESPN2 only block off three hours for a college football game? They're never done in three hours. If you don't remember that, you come home and get to watch three and a half quarters of football and miss the end. So you have to tape the next program as well. Such a glitch. Fix that for me, DirecTV.
-- Baseball note: I'd reported last week that senior Brian Hobbs, second on USF's baseball team with nine home runs last season, was off the Bulls' 2009 roster. Got an e-mail from Hobbs, who explained that he's academically ineligible after finishing one less class than he needed. He's due to graduate next summer, he said, and has a redshirt year, so he hopes to return to the Bulls for one more year in 2010.
"They definitely have the talent to do well this year, but with the new attitude I believe they will do great," Hobbs writes. "It will be fun to watch the young guys mature this year because we had so many freshmen last year and a lot of talent."
-- Basketball note: For those of you wondering about guard Mike Mercer after his arrest last week, he is still in the program, and coach Stan Heath said his discipline will be handled internally. Heath wouldn't say whether the penalty would involve any kind of game suspension, but did say that Mercer will take part in some counseling as a result of the incident. ... One recruit who had been considering USF, 6-5 swingman Earnest Ross of Cary, N.C., has commited to Auburn, by the way. Ross was at one point scheduled to come to USF for a campus visit this weekend.
Lots more to come, and we'll have a live blog throughout the game tonight ...