HANSEN

Greg Hansen: Little bitty SC State was home to four of baddest, best players NFL ever saw

2012-09-15T00:01:00Z 2012-09-15T16:32:02Z Greg Hansen: Little bitty SC State was home to four of baddest, best players NFL ever sawGreg Hansen Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
September 15, 2012 12:01 am  • 

Dear Mr. Football: Who would win an alumni football game between Arizona and South Carolina State?

A: Who's going to stop Deacon Jones from sacking Eddie Wilson? Who's going to keep Harry Carson out of Art Luppino's grille? Could Rob Gronkowski go over the middle against Donnie Shell?

And, my Lord, what about Marion Motley? He might've been the best football player who ever suited up.

The Bulldogs have never beaten a BCS team (they have played only four) - best SCSU win ever: the 1976 Bicentennial Bowl victory over Norfolk State to finish 10-1 - but not even USC has four more imposing ex-players than Bulldog Hall of Famers Motley, Jones, Shell and Carson.

Dear Mr. Football: Is Jared Tevis really that good?

A: In two games, the former walk-on from CDO has 21 tackles and two interceptions. If he maintains those numbers over an entire season, he'll be Chuck Cecil Part II.

I will always maintain that in 2009, Tevis played so well for the 14-0 Dorados that it was one of the 10 leading seasons ever by a high school football player in Tucson. He doesn't run fast, but he is in the right place at the right time, and isn't that most of the game?

In 2009, Tevis made 115 tackles, had 515 receiving yards, intercepted six passes, averaged 18.7 on punt returns, ran back a kickoff for a touchdown and scored 11 touchdowns.

Here's the definition of a gamer: Upon changing into his civvies after the Oklahoma State game, he showed up for media interviews with eye black still on. If that's not a football player, what is?

Dear Mr. Football: Why didn't Mike Stoops recruit Tevis?

A: Here's what Pima College coach Pat Nugent, who coached Tevis at CDO in 2008, remembers:

"He signed with us (PCC) and was ready to be an Aztec. In late June (2010), Arizona gave him a chance to be a walk-on. I remember sitting with Jared and his mom, discussing the situation. He knew it was going to be an uphill battle and he wasn't sure they'd ever give him a chance.

"But I knew he had the football sense and instincts to play anywhere. He is always around the ball. He's not fast or really athletic, but he makes plays. All he needed was the opportunity."

Dear Mr. Football: Do the fans at Arizona Stadium get a bad rap?

A: Upon returning to Stillwater, Okla., Cowboys guard Jonathan Rush told reporters that the fans in Tucson were "probably the loudest crowd I've been around in a while."

How's that for an endorsement? A year ago, with Rush as a starting left guard on a 12-1 team, Oklahoma State played at Texas, Missouri and Texas A&M.

When it's in the mood, Zona Zoo rocks with the best of 'em.

Dear Mr. Football: Is it too early to start the Ka'Deem Countdown?

A: Ka'Deem Carey opened the season with 147 rushing yards against Toledo and 126 against Okie State. Let the countdown begin. Only one former player from a Tucson high school has gained 100 yards in three consecutive UA games.

In the first three games of 1986, Sunnyside's David Adams gained 126 against Houston, 155 against Colorado State and 130 against Oregon. At midseason, Adams rushed for 111 against Oregon State, 124 against Cal and 182 against Wazzu in successive weeks.

Here's the career count of 100-yard games for Tucson rushers: Adams, 7; Vance Johnson, Cholla, 4; David Eldridge, Pueblo, 4; Derriak Anderson, Tucson, 2; Harry Holt, Sunnyside, 1; Jim Krohn, Amphi, 1. (Holt was primarily a tight end, but gained 102 against UTEP in 1977; Krohn, a quarterback, gained 120 vs. Wazzu in 1978).

Dear Mr. Football: How come no one seemed to notice, or care, that Arizona's defense yielded 636 yards against Oklahoma State? Can a good team get away with that for long?

A: Incredibly, five teams gained in excess of 600 yards against Baylor last year and lost.

Baylor gave up 777 yards against Washington and won 67-56; coughed up 607 yards against Iowa State and won 49-26; allowed Missouri to gain 686 yards and triumphed 42-39; surrendered 617 yards against Texas Tech and prevailed 66-42; permitted Oklahoma to gain 616 yards and won 45-38.

Of course, Baylor had Robert Griffin III at quarterback last year. A Heisman-winning quarterback covers up a lot of defensive flaws.

If you don't have an RG3, it's not recommended. Other than Baylor, the only BCS teams to yield 600 yards last season and win were, coincidentally, Oklahoma State, 59-24 over, yep, Baylor, and Arkansas, which yielded 628 against Texas A&M and won 42-38.

College football, 2012, is not the same game played 10 years ago, or even five years ago. Long-standing statistics will forever be bloated and broken.

Dear Mr. Football: How did Arizona persuade the Bulldogs to come this far to play a game they're going to lose?

A: Most of it was the $450,000 guarantee. That pays a lot of bills at a school that drew just 15,491 for its home opener, against Bethune-Cookman.

For the first time, South Carolina State is playing two games against BCS teams in the same year. It will be paid $550,000 next week to play at Texas A&M.

By the time the Bulldogs arrive home in Orangeburg, S.C., Sunday morning, just before noon, they'll have some money in the bank, a losing record and another long (and losing) trip next week to College Station, Texas.

Next time, the Bulldogs should arrange to play a "money game" at Oregon. The Ducks paid Arkansas State $950,000 to get beat 57-34 at Autzen Stadium two weeks ago.

That's college football, 2012, for better or, I contend, much worse.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Free Wildcats Sports Newsletter

University of Arizona sports news and blog headlines, delivered daily


Follow the Arizona Daily Star

Most Popular

Deals, offers & events

View more...