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Kicking Off Week 5 With Tebow's Injury and Poll Insanity // 09.28.09


On a scale of 1 to 100


You only need to know two words to understand the drop: Tebow injured.

A look at who's going which way in college football 

Takeup_medium STEVE SPURRIER
Has first signature win as Gamecocks head coach, taking down overrated Ole Miss. Or, as he would have called it during his time in Gainesville, "another football game."

Takedown_medium URBAN MEYER
Sure, he's left Tebow in the game for far too long before. But everybody notices it when the leader of your team gets hurt. Seriously, did you think Mike Hartline was going to score 24 unanswered?

Takedown_medium '350 X STICK LION'
Florida can pretty much take this play out of the playbook now.

Takedown_medium RICH BROOKS
Hey, he changed the complexion of the race for the SEC Championship. But probably not how he wanted to. Loss to Florida shows the Wildcats still have a lot of work to do if they're going to be considered a player in the East.

Takedown_medium WASHINGTON
Only Southern Cal has the right to lose to Stanford and remained ranked.

A few things to think about for the week ahead

Poll positions
I'm not going to waste any time on anything other than the one semi-regular feature in FYC, mostly because we all know what the most important question of the week will be and there's no reason to hesitate in getting around to it. That said, let's take a look at the polls, as we always do on a Monday.

First, Florida maintains its 55 first-place votes in the AP poll. And while Texas stays put at No. 2 in the writers' rankings, Alabama has picked up one of the Longhorns' first place votes, giving them a 4-to-1 edge over Texas. Which is why I've become confident there's some odd voting going on by some pollsters, since Alabama remains behind Texas despite that advantage.

The Gators lose one No. 1 ballot to Texas on the coaches' side, but keeps the other 58.

Oddities for the AP poll: Ole Miss ranked but South Carolina unranked; Oklahoma ranked 12 spots ahead of BYU. I'm not a huge fan of voting based solely on head-to-head, but it's about all we have to go on at this point in the season. The coaches do one better, putting Oregon at No. 25 and Cal at No. 19. The score of the game between those two this week? 42-3. In Oregon's favor. (Yes, I'm going to fix that on my ballot. I guess it takes looking at someone else's insanity to recognize your own.) They also have Penn State ahead of Iowa. Is there even any reason to play the games anymore?

Florida debuts with 99 of the 113 first-place votes in the Harris Poll, with Texas having four and Alabama getting 11. Someone please tell me who is voting Alabama low enough so that a seven-vote edge in first-place ballots doesn't matter. LSU is at No. 4 in all three polls, which is why one of the news items below is particularly mind-boggling. And despite waiting until this week to cast their votes, the distinguished panel still places Cal before Oregon, Penn State ahead of Iowa and puts Ole Miss 11 spots ahead of where South Carolina would be ranked if they counted that far. But at least Kansas State, which lost to LOUSIANA-LAFAYETTE, got two points for its unheralded breakthrough season.


Tebow's injury. The Orlando Sentinel draws from Tebow's high school football coach, Craig Howard, to say "the concussion is 'mild' or 'normal.'" I am not the only one to make this observation, but it seems to me that a concussion is far from a "normal" condition.

Howard noted that the Tebows would have stayed at the hospital longer if there was serious brain swelling or bleeding, common results of severe concussions. ...

If Tebow is suffering from a Grade II concussion out of a possible three grades, he might return to action after a week of rest. A Grade III might make Tebow unavailable for LSU on Oct. 10. Redshirt sophomore John Brantley is his backup.

Absolutely nothing to see here. Move along.

Goodman does some more actual reporting (gasp!) to get beyond the spin.

Specialists classify the severity of a concussion with three grades: I, II and III. According to the American Academy of Neurology, a Grade III concussion -- or the most severe -- is the diagnoses for any concussion when a player loses consciousness.

On Saturday and Sunday, Florida coach Urban Meyer and then a member of UF's sports information staff publicly said they were unaware that Tebow lost consciousness. If anyone watched the game, or re-watched footage of Wyndham's sack on YouTube, it's obvious that Tebow was knocked unconscious. ...

By all other accounts, Tebow's concussion was anything but mild.

Give a great deal of credit to Gators bloggers, who are practically begging Florida not to let Tebow play against LSU at least.

Alligator Army:

Do you really think this was his first concussion? Yes, it may be the first time he's been diagnosed, but anyone who has played football as long as Tebow has had the lights turned out once or twice.

Someone, because you know Urban and Tebow won't do it, has to stop Tebow from playing at LSU and possibly until Georgia. You can make the case that if Tebow has no concussion symptoms, he should play. I'll make the case that someone who gets KO'ed cannot function normally two weeks later.

EDSBS non-jokingly asks Tebow to think about the children:

This is what you might call a teaching moment. We hope he chooses the lesson that it is just football, and that sometimes discretion is the better part of valor. Simultaneously, we are not optimistic about him making this choice.

I must agree. Listen, this is serious stuff we're talking about here. As Orson points out in his post, a concussion is not an injury to the skull, as a lot of people seem to think. It is an injury to the brain. That is a serious injury regardless of what the injury report says. Tebow cannot be allowed to gamble with the rest of his life because he might have a better chance than John Brantley to defeat LSU. Because no one wants to remember Tim Tebow's last game for all the wrong reasons.

Meanwhile, the guy who delivered the fateful blow is just trying to move on.

"When I got up and saw he was hurt, I was kind of upset about it," Wyndham said. "It's football, but you always hope that nobody gets injured.

"It was a good hit, a clean hit. I'm sorry he got hurt; I wish the best for him." ...

"I really don't want to be known as that guy."

Wyndham is right; the hit was absolutely clean. He has nothing to feel ashamed of. 

Byron Isom suspended
War Blog Eagle sees this as a problem.

What we do know is that

1. Isom is in some kind of trouble
2. If he doesn’t play, Auburn is in trouble.

In fairness, they play Tennessee this week.

Is Les Miles on the hot seat?
Most people would look at a 4-0 record and say "No." Then there are LSU fans ...

The most amazing play of the weekend
I half-jokingly said in the open thread that it looked like it took the entire Arkansas defense to take Jones down. Turns out, I was right.

Stafford-led Lions end 19-game losing streak
Now, if they can just avoid another 19-game losing streak, that will be real progress.

Injury Report (Besides the obvious)

DT Travian Robertson, South Carolina
Torn ACL, season

LB Dont'a Hightower, Alabama
Knee injury, season

MLB Nick Reveiz, Tennessee
Knee injury, season


Baylor loses it starting QB
And promptly loses his replacement. As if things weren't hard enough for Baylor.

Brandon Carter is not a Texas Tech captain anymore
We know because he told his Twitter followers that he was forced to walk the plank by Cap'n Leach.