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Plainslinks works on its weather-related SAT analogies

Ben, I wouldn't want to be typecast like that, either, man. So I'm here to help.
Ben, I wouldn't want to be typecast like that, either, man. So I'm here to help.

McCalebb : lightning :: Tate : ????? I predicted in my RB preview that it wouldn’t take long for the Tate and McCalebb tag-team the get stuck with the “thunder and lightning” moniker, and sure enough, here we are. For his part, Tate doesn’t have an issue with the latter half of that analogy

“McCalebb’s definitely lightning, I’ll tell you that.”

… but as for the first part …

“I wouldn’t really call myself a thunder back,” Tate said. “I’m not a Brandon Jacobs guy. I’m not going to run everyone over, but I’ll pick and choose my battles. If I see a linebacker that’s about my size, I’ll try him. If that’s what they want to call it, whatever works for them.”

My objections to the nickname are more from an originality standpoint than a truth-in-advertising standpoint–let’s face it, even if his quicks are above-average, what makes Tate such a quality back is his ruggedness and ability to gain yards-after-contact–but “Thunder and Lightning” has been done to death. I agree with Tate: we need something else.

So I propose: “Hailstorm and Lightning.” As Tate says, McCalebb’s too fast (and slim) to be anything but “Lightning,” but “Hailstorm” fits Tate pretty well, right? Hailstorms hit you surprisingly quick, bruise and batter everything in sight, and leave a visible trail of damage in their wake. Tate and McCalebb, Hailstorm and Lightning.

Tell your friends.

More. Andy Bitter has your typically exhaustive rundown of Auburn quotes and news from yesterday. Worth noting:

  • Chizik is suggesting Eric Smith will play on Saturday, which would be a surprise to me–but since Luper’s also suggesting they won’t work McCalebb as much, I guess it makes sense.
  • In a related story, Luper expects Aycock to redshirt.
  • Fannin will likely be off punt returns, but who’ll replace him is a total mystery.
  • Chizik said he expected the “same crew” to hit the field even though The Toro “looked better.” The guess here: Freeman sits one more week and is fully ready to go for WVU.
  • Taylor on the Darvin Adams fumble: “You’ve got to save that dancing for the club.”

I also can’t say I thought this was a particularly encouraging Luper quote about Douglas:

He’s tough. He can play with a little nick here and a little nick there. He knows the offense well. In the spring, he was just consistently there every practice, every day and he earned the right to play and he played well. He’s not as physical as you would like for him to be. A couple times in the game a couple linebackers got the best of him but he’s going to stick his nose in there every single time.

Emphasis mine because 1. we’re talking about the guy whose sole job it is (as least to date) to be a blocking back not being “physical enough” 2. after re-watching the game, I agree. If the coaches feel Douglas is the best they can do at that spot, I won’t complain (much), but I remain a little worried how he’s going to hold up against SEC (and Big East) competition.

There’s even more at that Bitter link, including quotes from Thigpen and Grimes and a wonderfully aggressive philosophy on kickoffs from Boulware, but I think I’ve gone way past the point of “fair use” already.

Elsewhere, Chizik desperately tries to keep McCalebb’s head from swelling and Greg Knox is returning to Auburn.

THE TODDENING. LSU blog And the Valley Shook has created a clever quarterback-tracking stat that measures, basically, how many yards per both passing and rushing attempt a QB gains, with bonuses and demerits tossed in for TDs and picks. And after one week of action, the top of the leaderboard in the SEC looks like

tableJust one week, I know. But could you say, adjusting for strength of opponent, that Todd had the strongest Week 1 performance of any QB in the SEC? What the hell, I’m going to say it anyway.

BlAUgosphere. PPL‘s Kevin Ives gets around to reviewing the game at Tigers Corner (I co-sign on wanting to see more out of the TEs), Acid Reign takes a look at the history of first-year coaches at AU and MSU, and Beaver borrows a wrap-up on how Auburn’s 2010 commitments fared this weekend.

A quick moment of thanks. With The Toro, Tim Hawthorne, and Mike McNeil all still on the sidelines and Aairon Savage gone for the year, you can’t say Auburn’s dodged the injury bug. But when you root for a team this perilously thin, every weekend that passes without Auburn getting anyone seriously (or even non-seriously) dinged up is one that you need to express some gratitude for, and this past weekend happened to be one of those. So particularly after reading this Barrett Sallee CFN post on the injury (and flu) woes elsewhere in the SEC, consider this the Official WBE Expression of Thanks. Now, let’s all knock on some wood and have another weekend just like it.

Etc. The Animated Blogpoll is always a hoot … give the State-related links made available by Andy Bitter here a try … the stat work here is based on the NFL, but no matter what league you’re in, a touchback is a terrific play (via) … in case you missed it, the Worst Sports Column Ever was written this week … and thanks to Smart Football we now know the battle for the coolest high school nickname in the country has been decided, and the winner is Millenium High School in Tracy, CA. Behold:

mhs falcons

Tate photo via.

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