How many carries will Mark Ingram get against Duke?

 Five things to look for this weekend:

 1. Lots of questions about Alabama at Duke: Yes, we know it will probably be a blowout at Wallace Wade Stadium. But we’re looking at this game for three reasons:

Mark Ingram: Ingram, the 2009 Heisman Trophy winner, sat out the first two games after having his knee scoped. He’s ready to go. So how much does Alabama use him in order that he’s full speed for next week’s SEC opener at Arkansas?

Marcell Dareus: The Alabama defensive end sat out the first two games against San Jose State and Penn State due to improper contact with an agent. Now he gets to take all of that pent-up energy and frustration and unleash it on Duke, which is coming off a heartbreaking 54-48 loss to Wake Forest.

Duke QB Sean Renfree: He is the latest latest protégé of Duke coach David Cutcliffe, who tutored the Manning brothers. Cutcliffe, a proud 1976 Alabama graduate, would love to win the game but that is not going to happen. More than anything, he wants to make sure that his quarterback is whole when this game is over.

 

2. Denard Robinson vs. UMass: The Michigan quarterback has carried the ball 57 times in two games against UConn and Notre Dame. The result is two victories. Now the Wolverines (2-0) have three relatively easy games starting Saturday with UMass followed by Bowling Green and Indiana. Then things get serious again with an Oct. 9 visit from Michigan State. So how many carries will “Shoelaces” Robinson get against the Minutemen before coach Rich Rodriguez gets his star quarterback out of the game? Robinson, who had 502 total yards against Notre Dame, is at the top of the early Heisman ballots.  How Rich Rod uses Robinson in this three-game stretch will be very interesting.

3. Michael Dyer against Clemson: A win on the road in the SEC is a very precious thing. When you play away from home in this league, you do whatever you have to do to get a “W” then get on the bus and go home. It ain’t about style points on the road. For a team that is 2-0 and 1-0 in the SEC, Auburn sure did have a lot of complaining fans last Friday after the Tigers won at Starkville 17-14. There were complaints that the offense was too predictable. There were complaints that Auburn should have put Mississippi State away and won by a bigger margin. Auburn’s defense, which was pretty porous a year ago, held Dan Mullen’s offense to 14 points. That wasn’t good enough. Sheesh! As good as new Auburn QB Cam Newton is, I’m hearing that freshman running back Michael Dyer will get a good look in Saturday’s big non-conference game with Clemson. I’m anxious to see how many carries Dyer gets against a good Clemson defense. I’m also anxious to see what the complaints will be Sunday if Auburn goes to 3-0 on national television with ESPN’s College Game Day looking on.

4. Tennessee’s determination against Florida: Everybody knows this is going to be a difficult year at Tennessee. They simply don’t have the players. But Volunteer fans can expect Derek Dooley to field a team that plays hard for the whole game. That didn’t happen last week against Oregon in Knoxville. The Volunteers jumped out to a 13-3 lead against the defending PAC-10 champs but wilted after a pick six gave the Ducks a 27-13 lead. The reality is that in a situation like this (Tennessee has had three head coaches in three years) the players still in the program get pretty beat down. I’m not going to say that college kids quit. Let’s just say that under these circumstances they don’t handle adversity very well. “We went into this game in the fourth quarter down 14 and we’re not even competing,” Dooley told reporters in Knoxville. “And that’s something we have to change.”

I’m pretty sure Tennessee will get another look at adversity in Saturday’s game with Florida in Knoxville. It will be interesting to see if they handle it any better.

 

5. Whither the ACC? After a one of the toughest weekends ever for a conference—with losses by four of five teams (Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, Miami, Florida State) ranked in the preseason Top 25–the ACC doesn’t have a walk in the park on Sept. 18. The headliner is a conference game between Georgia Tech and North Carolina in Chapel Hill. But the non-conference slate again looks like a long stretch of bad road: No. 1 Alabama at Duke; Clemson at undefeated Auburn; Maryland at West Virginia; BYU at Florida State; East Carolina at Virginia Tech and Wake Forest at Stanford (which beat UCLA 35-0 last week.) Also, N.C. State plays Cincinnati, the defending Big East champs, tonight on ESPN. That’s seven strong non-conference games. The ACC really needs to go no worse than 4-3 in these games.

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Programming note: We’ve got a pretty strong lineup of guests today on the “Barnhart and Durham Show” on 790 The Zone. Joining us will be former Georgia coach Vince Dooley, SEC Commissioner Mike Slive, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney, and Gary Danielson, who will Saturday’s Florida-Tennessee game for CBS. We’ll be on remote at the Loco’s in Sandy Springs. Come see us! www.790thezone.com

176 comments Add your comment

rusty

September 16th, 2010
7:26 am

Auburn fan here. I really hope Dyer is unleashed and they take some of the carries away from Newton. Very interested to see if the defense continues to improve.

SC Boy

September 16th, 2010
7:28 am

First. Not that it matters.

SC Boy

September 16th, 2010
7:28 am

Shucks. Second?

just a fan

September 16th, 2010
7:50 am

I think they go 2-5 at best in those games sorry to say but there performance was abysmal last weekend

Dawg_Mike

September 16th, 2010
7:54 am

ACC is in for a long year….

Will

September 16th, 2010
7:54 am

Enjoy your daily blogs Tony. Thanks!

Mike

September 16th, 2010
7:57 am

The Knoxville News-Sentinel is reporting today that Tennessee is now selling tickets to the UAB game 50% off. They will be giving them away after Florida blows through them Saturday. The T on the helmet will always stand for Thugs at UThug.

Innocent Bystander

September 16th, 2010
7:58 am

Did you mean “whither” the ACC or “wither”?
Both make sense I guess.

WAR EAGLE!

September 16th, 2010
7:58 am

No complaints here. I was thrilled with the win and I’ll be just as happy with a win this weekend and next. Miss St is no pushover. I hope the Plainsmen turn it up a notch and put a serious whipping on the ACC Tigers. I’ll be there…at the top of my lungs. It’s Great to be an Auburn Tiger!!!

WAR EAGLE!

September 16th, 2010
8:01 am

Don’t be too surprised if UT makes a run at UF.

Ormewood

September 16th, 2010
8:03 am

Guess you have to give the ACC credit for playing tough non-conference games. I see them going 3-4 in those games at best.

H-Back

September 16th, 2010
8:03 am

I think UT/Florida will be a good game and closer than people think. Still not sold on the Gators. Brantley needs more reps, Moody is a bust and Rainey is gone. If Simms can hit enough passes to keep the Gator D honest, UT can run the ball and keep it close.

Tony Barnhart

September 16th, 2010
8:04 am

Thanks, Innocent Bystander. It is “Whither.” My high school English teacher, Tommie Ward, would be proud that we made that distinction.

Dog Island Gator

September 16th, 2010
8:04 am

Change of subject. Tired of all these arrests, DUI’s and other nonsence. Read Pat Dooley’s artical http://www.gatorsports.com in todays Gainsville Sun (FL). Right on point.

17 of 20

September 16th, 2010
8:08 am

Gators will win by 30 points.

Davey Boy Smith

September 16th, 2010
8:12 am

At what point does the Mountain West take the ACC’s at-large BCS bid? It’s pretty obvious that the Mountain West is already a much better conference.

Bozydeco

September 16th, 2010
8:12 am

The Auburn/Clemson game should be very interesting. Auburn has played at least one somewhat challenging opponent so far while Clemson has N. Texas State and Presbyterian. Who knows what type of team Clemson has fielded this year? I believe the Auburn Tigers can be considered a step up from the Blue Hose of Clinton,SC. We know at least Clemson’s punter Dawson Zimmerman from Brookwood High School will perform well – Zimmerman had a 79 yard punt in his first game.
WDE!

Jake

September 16th, 2010
8:15 am

What team wouldn’t be stressed with have 3 coaches in 3 years. UT is lucky to have enough players to field a team. Better get them now while their down, becasuse they have the history and the tradition to come back, and when they do,, look out.

5IML

September 16th, 2010
8:15 am

1 & 2. Ingram and Robinson should have no more than 10 carries each this weekend. Duke’s QB gets BAMA warmed up for Mallett next week.

3. I hate to say this but, I’m pulling for Aub this weekend.

4. UT hangs tough in the first half but, poots out in the second.

5. The ACC is what it is–second-tier.

30-24 Dawgs - We Run This State!

September 16th, 2010
8:18 am

“The ACC is what it is–second-tier.” – True Dat. Even North Dakota State is better!

GT Dude

September 16th, 2010
8:19 am

The ACC team with the most to lose this weekend is VT… can you just imagine the whining coming from Coach Beamer if they start out 0-3; “we need preseason games”, “it was the illegal chop blocks”, …

GT Dude

September 16th, 2010
8:22 am

30-24 dawg
how can you even have the nerve to run your mouth,
if your beloved UGA goes down this weekend your season is over with no chance to recover
you’ll struggle to even to get back to a bowl in Mississippi

Chad

September 16th, 2010
8:26 am

Clempson has a good defense? Haha.

Davey Boy Smith

September 16th, 2010
8:26 am

Ah, yes, but GT Dude, they will still have the Jackets to beat up on. Not much solace in taking out a mediocre foe from a 2nd tier conference, but still, it all that will be left.

Buck Belue wears a toupee

September 16th, 2010
8:27 am

What about my beloved dawwwgs???

I predict a comfortable win for them this Saturday.

How my “hair” look ?

JDW

September 16th, 2010
8:34 am

Hey GT Dude…did you enjoy your trip to Kansas? BTW even if we were to “go down” this weekend, we have nine games left and get to finish by swatting bees as always. Lots to look forward to.

GT Dude

September 16th, 2010
8:37 am

Davey,
If what i saw last Saturday continues, there is a good possibility that there’s a good chance that there will be two mediocre teams playing only for bragging rights.
Only solice is that if Tech goes down at UNC this weekend there is a chance to recover with only one conference loss; however, if the Dawgs go down to Arkansas, the SEC season is done.

joe

September 16th, 2010
8:38 am

@Mike–that is such a funny comment from a UF fan who’s team has had 30, yes 30 arrests under CUM. What was that text made just this week?? “Time to die…biatch…Wait and see what happens when the cops leave.” Stay classy Gators…

RxDawg

September 16th, 2010
8:39 am

Kind of a David vs. Goliaith week huh?

Look, if a player is ready he is ready and you play him. Especially a talent like Ingram.

Gatorbait 17-3

September 16th, 2010
8:42 am

I thought Tenn played very well the 1st half, but they just aren’t deep enough to rotate in fresh players. Their starting 22 will play with most teams in the 1st half—–they just get worn down in the second half—I don’t think quit.

Gatorbait 17-3

September 16th, 2010
8:44 am

joe

Rainy’s off the team, WHAT ELSE WOULD YOU LIKE?

TDone

September 16th, 2010
8:45 am

All the badgering of the ACC is premature. Let the season play out and see the bottom line at the end of the year.

SimpleDawg

September 16th, 2010
8:49 am

Satan will play Ingram just enough for him to work up a sweat and get his uniform dirty, but Richardson and others will get most of the carries. Cutcliff had better watch his QB closely…..if he starts getting roughed up, Duke had better start running the ball every play.

The Vowels probably take another beating this weekend, but the Gators had better be ready to play or this game could get a little tedious.

Clempson will give Awbarn a tough test. A low scoring game helps Clempson stay close until the end…..then, who knows what happens.

Meechigan will do well as long as Shoelaces can continue to avoid those trying to rip his head off…..one zig when he should’ve zagged, and Rich Rod’s season…and job go down the drain.

Dawgs had better have an intense pass rush this weekend, or Mallet and the Hogs may hammer them into submission.

Fire Bobo Now!

September 16th, 2010
8:59 am

Why not go ahead say Tennessee quit against Oregon, Tony? Barbara (Babs) Dooley sure as hell didn’t mind saying that on the Finebaum show the other day.

bamaguy

September 16th, 2010
9:01 am

We are only told what Coach Saban wants us to know about the extent of Ingram’s injury. WIth RIchardson as his “back up” I see no reason to take any chances on a further injury. The guy has a multi-million dollar NFL career waiting on him at the end of the year. Marcell Darius will tear Duke up.

Auburn and Florida, on paper, should win easily. But this is a year where Jacksonville State beat and SEC team, so I am taking nothing for granted. I want Auburn (because they are in the SEC0 to win but I knew Dabo in college. A very nice guy.

Tide Roll

September 16th, 2010
9:03 am

Ingram gets some early work, 80-100 yards, then takes it easy the rest of the day to get ready for florida in a few weeks—the only game that Bama needs to worry about.

SimpleDawg

September 16th, 2010
9:09 am

With this week’s game against UNC…..

Has GIT braced for impact?

Bama Fan #2

September 16th, 2010
9:09 am

GO CLEMSON!!! RTR

WDE

September 16th, 2010
9:14 am

Barnhart, while there is always complaining from any SEC fan base after any win/loss, you really are exaggerating Auburn’s complaining after Miss. State.

Don’t know what your problem is, but anyone reading can know that most Auburn fans are very happy to have gotten by Miss. State- a team that is definitely going to beat some people this year.

3rdn8

September 16th, 2010
9:15 am

who knows what Clemson has. Their cupcakes are cupcakes, compared to other schools cupcakes.

I’m torn on this one. I pull for AU when they’re not playing Bama, but have a high regard for Dabo Sweeney, and Kevin Steele.

I’m guessing this will be a good game, but home team pulls it out.

Palladin

September 16th, 2010
9:16 am

1. After witnessing VT’s second game, I wouldn’t consider any contest a “guaranteed blowout”.

1a. No wound heals completely in 2-3 weeks. Ingram should see limited duty.
1b. Marcell is a beast.
1c. See 1b.

2. The spread offense is a gimmick. Quality defenses now know how to shut it down. Fortunately for Rich-Rod, Michigan doesn’t face very many quality defenses.

3. Home field advantage is greatly overrated, but the fans do appreciate getting partial credit for a win. The fans would be even more effective if they all wore their “lucky underwear”. Little is known about either of these teams — it will be an interesting game.

4. Tennessee should compete early, but a diminished roster is nearly impossible to overcome. This is Florida’s game to lose. I’d be absolutely shocked if they lost it.

5. Nice of you to mention the ACC for the benefit of your local audience. I thought that the addition of Miami and Florida State would improve the conference. Instead, the conference dragged them down to mediocrity.

3rdn8

September 16th, 2010
9:21 am

Palladin (think this handle gives your age away)

have to disagree on your point No. 2

I thought the spread was a gimmick as well, but have been convinced otherwise. If a spread team has a QB the caliber of Tebow, or anything close, it is tough to defend. The glaring weakness that I’ve seen comes on 3rdnShort. That was always Tebow time. Fortunately for AU, I think they have a QB who can pull it off.

sunny purdue

September 16th, 2010
9:26 am

H-Back – apparently you have not had a chance to see Florida’s D. They will smother Simms, stuff the run and shut down the passing game. This may be another game where UF picks off another 4 passes.

We Hit and Run This State

September 16th, 2010
9:27 am

At least we play tough OOC games.

Duke, WF, and MD will all likely lose, but the other 4 have a great shot.

THWG

UT1998

September 16th, 2010
9:27 am

17 of 20 (I mean 1 of 2) , you said “Gators will win by 30 points.

You better be praying that they win at all. What an embarrassment it’d be for you and all the gaytors if UT beats FL after the whipping we took from a Pac-10 team last weekend.

We Hit and Run This State

September 16th, 2010
9:30 am

And hey “SimpleDawg”:

This just in…Marcus Lattimore breaks another tackle for a 20-yard gain

Davey Boy Smith

September 16th, 2010
9:30 am

GTDude,

This year’s UGA-Tech game could be the most irrellevant, poorest attended contest since 1996, which is also the last time UGA fielded a squad with as little talent as this year’s team.

3rdn8

September 16th, 2010
9:32 am

3rdn8

September 16th, 2010
9:36 am

poor tackling.

I’ve seen more cases of poor tackling in the SEC than I’ve seen in a long time. UGA, UT, Bama, and Penn State come to mind.

I can’t figure out if is a problem with the defenses, or if the RBs, and WRs are just getting so much better. UGA, UT, and Bama had better get it sorted out pretty soon.

Bama blows

September 16th, 2010
9:36 am

“How many carries will Mark Ingram get against Duke?”

No one outside the trailer parks of Tuscaloosa cares.