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  1. Oregon v Alabama Michigan v LSU Miami v Notre Dame USC v Texas Week 13 Texas v USC Notre Dame v Miami LSU v Michigan Alabama v Oregon Week 14 Oregon v USC LSU v Alabama Michigan v Miami Notre Dame v Texas
  2. With Hunter Higgins' season thus far now reviewed, our attention turns to Tyson Kelly and how his individual season and the season of his Alabama Crimson Tide has played out For the Tide, it's largely been a season to forget. Having only narrowly missed out on playoff action last season, Alabama fans were hopeful the team could push to that next level and get into the Eastern Conference Title game. That push has simply never come and in fact the team's record has gone backwards. They now sit bottom of the conference with a 2-8 record. However, the season is not mathematically over, with the second playoff spot (occupied by Miami) only 2 games ahead with four games to go. Alabama faces only one team with a record above .500 in those last four games, that being LSU, and faces Notre Dame and Oregon twice as well. It appears pretty unlikely and Alabama would also need other results to go their way, but stranger things have happened and for now at least, all playoff hope is not completely lost As for Kelly, his fortunes do not mirror those of his team. Despite some drops along the way, Kelly has proven to be a fairly reliable target for QB Peter La Fleur. Operating out of the slot, Kelly has racked up the fifth most receiving yards in the NCAA (639), with two receiving touchdowns. He has been a revelation as a receiver and as such, his rushing attempts have, much like his junior year, been very limited, with just 34 yards on the ground and one rushing touchdown. If Alabama are any chance to make a late season surge, Kelly will need to continue his current production and then some.
  3. It’s fair to say Tyson Kelly’s first year and a half of college ball hasn’t quite panned out the way he envisioned when he graduated from his Brooklyn high school as one of the top running backs in the state. Upon joining Alabama, Kelly saw himself continuing right where he left off and establishing himself as a clear threat out of the backfield, capable of finding space where there seemingly wasn’t and running all day. He saw himself topping the rushing yards list come the midway point of his sophomore season. But, as things have turned out, Kelly is towards the top of another yards’ list: The receiving yards Having spent his entire freshman year stuck behind top running back and now Seattle Predator Femidas Picante, Kelly assumed he’d become the number one back in Tuscaloosa. So, it took him by complete surprise when he was informed that role would instead be going to his teammate Kelvin Sarte “I probably took for granted that I would be the next man up once Femidas left so yeah, it was a little shocked and disappointed when they told me Kelvin was going to be the lead guy. From my perspective, it was like another year of being the backup and seeing minimal time. I could cope with that in my freshman year but I didn’t want it to become a running theme” Kelly said Keen to have Kelly showcase his skill set and keep him involved in the offence, Kelly was approached to play full time at another position: Wide receiver. Specially slot receiver, a position Kelly has some experience in, having taken snaps there during his freshman campaign, racking up a modest 188 receiving yards and 1 TD. Kelly jumped at the chance “I just wanted to be involved on a regular basis so of course, when they said we want you to play in the slot this year, I’d much prefer that to not playing at all and not getting the chance to help the team win. I worked on the pass-catching side of my game throughout my freshman year and the offseason, so I was relatively confident I’d do ok” Kelly continued Not even Kelly himself could have predicted how well this season has gone for him so far. At time of writing, through ten games, Kelly has caught 42 passes for 639 yards and 2 TDS. Kelly’s receiving yards total places him, a natural running back only semi-accustomed to playing receiver, fifth (at time of writing) in the whole NCAA “No, of course I didn’t expect it to be going this well” Kelly said “I’m just happy to be seeing the field on a regular basis and that the coaching staff have found a role for me to play in and play well. It hasn’t been all smooth sailing; I’ve had some drop issues that I’m working on correcting but that’s just the next challenge for me to overcome” he continued Kelly still maintains going forward his preference is to be a running back “I’ve been a runner all my life, it’s where I played all my high school ball, it’s where I feel most natural so if the decision was up to me, running back is where I’d want to play. Having said that, I’ll play wherever I’m needed and if right now that’s in the slot, that’s where I’ll line up” Kelly added
  4. USC v Alabama LSU v Miami Michigan v Notre Dame Oregon v Texas Week 10 USC v LSU Alabama v Miami Texas v Michigan Notre Dame v Oregon Week 11 Michigan v USC Notre Dame v Alabama Texas v LSU Miami v Oregon
  5. As we hit the midpoint of the NCAA season, it seems like the perfect point to take stock and see how the season has progressed for Hunter Higgins, as well as the Oregon Ducks After a promising 3-1 start for the Oregon Ducks, it's fair to say the Ducks have fallen away significantly, dropping their last four games to sit 3-5 on the season. The biggest issue for them is the strength of the two teams that lead their conference, who sit a combined 15-1. The Ducks playoff chances seem slim at best, as they trail second placed Texas by four game. But, if the Texas/Notre Dame result has taught us anything, it’s that anything can happen in the NCAA. Even if playoffs mightn’t eventuate, the Ducks will want to get back to their earlier high level of play in the second half of the season. For Higgins, it’s been a season plagued with inconsistency, of games with high involvement followed with games where he has been virtually invisible. He has forced two fumbles so far (ranked third in the NCAA), but is yet to register an interception or pass defence, whilst his tackle numbers have been lower than he would’ve liked. Like the rest of the Ducks, Higgins must step up his level of play in the second half of the season to finish the season off strongly. Already whispers have emerged as to whether next season will be Higgins’ final one in the NCAA, but nothing concrete has emerged at this stage and Higgins remains 100% focused on the task at hand.
  6. Week 6 Texas v Alabama USC v Miami Notre Dame v LSU Michigan v Oregon Week 7 Notre Dame v USC Oregon v LSU Michigan v Alabama Miami v Texas Week 8 Alabama v LSU Texas v Notre Dame Miami v Michigan USC v Oregon
  7. Hunter Higgins on the season so far It's certainly taken a little getting used to the new scheme and direction our new AD has put into place but I really can't speak highly enough of her and how she's taken to the role From the team's perspective, I'd say our season so far has been as good as we could've hoped for. A hard fought loss to a good LSU team in Week 1 is nothing to be ashamed about in my eyes, followed by grinding out three wins in a row, including a W against last season's runner up, Miami. Did get our asses collectively kicked against Texas, that certainly wasn't how we wanted to play, but full credit to Texas, they're a strong unit and just too good on the day. We've definitely set the foundations for us to have a good season overall. Unfortunately the top two teams in college football also happen to be in our conference and getting ahead of them for a playoff spot won't be a walk in the park but there is still plenty of football to be played, plenty of twists and turns to come and I have the faith in us to be right there when playoff spots are to be decided. I know that I haven’t been playing to anywhere near the level I know I’m capable of and I know that I need to step my game up and become more involved on a consistent basis. It’s been a bit frustrating I’ll admit but I’ve just got to keep working my ass off and getting myself in the right spots to make a play and things will come my way.
  8. I also only just remembered about this so I've just done mine for Week 4 & 5 Week 4 Oregon v Miami Alabama v Notre Dame USC v Michigan LSU v Texas Week 5 Alabama v USC Notre Dame v Michigan Miami v LSU Texas v Oregon
  9. I've always been a stats person. Even as a young child, I'd spend my hours looking over all the stats from my favourite sports (that includes the best sport in the world: Aussie Rules Football. But that's a conversation for another day), keeping track of how my favourite players were doing. As I grew older, my love for stats never changed. Instead, it was accompanied with the thought of "Is this why girls won't talk to me?". As I sank deeper and deeper into my stats, I came to two realizations: The answer to that thought is most certainly yes and that not all stats are created equally. Some held far more weight than others. So, I thought I'd rank player stats by how valuable I view them. For this, I'm going to be focusing on defensive stats in relation to my SS 6. Sacks If I was a DE or LB, this would obviously be higher up but as a SS, it’s not really my job to put consistent pressure on QB. They occur so infrequently for strong safeties that it’s hard to see them as a valuable indicator of how good a safety is tracking. Sacks as a safety are much like the cherry on top of a sundae. 5. Pass Defences Something that I look out for as a SS, as it can give a bit of an indication of the impact you’re having on defence in being able to prevent passes being completed . Now, obviously if the ball simply isn’t thrown your way, it’s pretty hard to make a play and come up with a pass defence so low PD numbers can be purely a lack of opportunity. Context is key with this stat and that’s not something that can be determined simply by looking at it. 4. Tackles + TFLs Speaking of context, let’s talk about the tackle stat. Some would argue it’s a completely useless stat for the simple fact that it completely lacks context. A tackle on third down that stops a receiver short of a first down is marked down the same as a tackle after a big gain, yet one of those is definitely more important than the other. TFLs can highlight some of those more important tackles, but much like sacks, these tend to be few and far between for a SS, purely for the lack of opportunity to do so. Despite it’s obvious flaws, I do think the tackle stat has relevance for looking at how involved a SS can be, but these tackle numbers need to be taken with a grain of salt 3. Safeties and Defensive TDs Coming to the top three and the theme for these is impact. These are direct indicators of a strong safety’s impact in being able to turn the ball over and getting the offence back on the field or put points on the board yourself. The first of these is safeties and defensive TDs. These I view as the least important “impact stats” simply due to how infrequent they are. I’d rank defensive TDs slightly ahead of safeties purely for the fact that as a SS, I’d be more likely to score a defensive TD off a pick six or returning a recovered fumble than be able to force a safety. 2. Forced fumbles/fumble recoveries I’ve grouped forced fumbles and fumble recoveries together purely for simplicity and have them ranked slightly ahead of safeties and defensive TDs on the basis that fumbles occur more often and whilst they don’t directly put points on the board, the ability to demoralize an driving offence by coming up with a fumble and preventing points being scored is huge. Fumbles show great instincts in seeing an opportunity to rip the ball out from the opponent. 1. Interceptions Probably a bit of personal bias here, but this is a personal ranking list and c’mon, who doesn’t love a good pick? Not only does it measure impact on defence in getting turnovers, but it also displays your IQ in anticipating what’s coming and a knack for getting yourself in the right place at the right time. One INT might be a fluke, but when you’re consistently getting them, that’s the sign of a great ball hawking safety.
  10. Tyson Kelly on the importance of starting the season off strong It's vital to build a platform to launch our season so I'd say those first few games are really important in establishing ourselves and what we want to do. Getting off to a poor start immediately puts you on the back foot, you're forced to play catch up and it just makes the entire challenge of making the playoffs and beyond that much harder. It's also something that can affect the morale in the locker room and that's something that can't be overlooked For me personally, I want to hit the ground running. I feel like I've done a lot of work in the off season to improving myself and I want to take that next step and become one of the best players in the NCAA but also one of the most dynamic. My freshman year really taught me the importance of adding strings to your bow and being a versatile player that can do a bit of everything. In high school, I was a run first guy, I wanted to be given the ball and pound through the line of scrimmage. I didn't have a greater deal of pass catching ability and that's something that I found could set me apart from other guys so I was able to get the opportunity to work on it my freshman year and this off season and now, I think I have the versatility to line up in the backfield but also in the slot as a receiver Getting my season off to the right start will give me immense confidence and I feel like that's what I've done so far. I led the team in receiving in our week one victory and was still able to contribute in our close loss to Texas so I'm pretty happy from a personal standpoint but also from a team standpoint. We got the W in Week 1, a great team performance, and we pushed Texas all the way so I'd say we've started off as well as we could've hoped for. Here's to continuing that throughout the season
  11. How do you feel about the team getting a new AD? It's always exciting when new people get brought in with new ideas and ways of doing things. Absolutely no disrespect to @oilmandan, he did a great job as AD and was rightfully rewarded with a position in New York, but with that came a position here that needed to be filled and I couldn't think of anyone better than @HuddleHussy to lead this new era of Ducks football Why did you sign with the Ducks? Two fold really. The first reason was I wanted to move away from my comfort zone of living in Louisiana and try something new by going completely out of the state. The second was the Ducks were the first ones to take serious interest in me and I liked the system they had in place Have you ever forgot to wear a piece of equipment and what was it? Not so much forgot but in high school, one of my cleats broke during the game and I had no replacement pairs on me, so I was forced to play an entire half wearing only one cleat. Not the greatest experience, let me tell you. What are you hoping to get out of this season on the ducks? From a personal perspective, I'm hoping to develop into one of the elite safeties in college football but from a team's perspective, getting back into the playoffs would be a great starting point and hopefully we're able to go on to win the whole thing Oregon has some fun uniforms, which is your fav? I've got a soft spot for our all yellow uniform Would you nominate yourself to be team Captain? Yeah I'd certainly like to be in the discussion to become the team's defensive captain Usually other ducks are the prey, how do you like our tag line : "This season (Fall) the Ducks hunt you! #QuackAttack" ? I mean, it's pretty tough to make a duck sound intimidating but this tagline's pretty good, I'd say Is it odd having a female Athletic Director as a player? Not really, no. The gender of the AD isn't something I'm particularly concerned about, I'm more interested in how well they support and lead us players and so far, I have nothing but positive things to say about @HuddleHussy
  12. Week 1 Texas v Miami USC v Notre Dame Alabama v Michigan LSU v Oregon Week 2 Miami v USC LSU v Notre Dame Oregon v Michigan Alabama v Texas
  13. Name: Hunter Higgins Team: Oregon Workout/Equipment Name: 6 TPE + 1 TPE Equipment Gain(If applicable): N/A Cost of Workout: $3,000,000 Cash you Have: $3,000,000 Cash Left: $0 Name: Tyson Kelly Team: Alabama Workout/Equipment Name: 6 TPE + 1 TPE Equipment Gain(If applicable): N/A Cost of Workout: $3,000,000 Cash you Have: $3,000,000 Cash Left: $0
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