Ratto's Top 25: Giants' Casilla cracks list, closing in on Bama


Ratto's Top 25: Giants' Casilla cracks list, closing in on Bama

There were 1,504 points worth of points given this past weekend, and favorites were a mediocre (for Week 2 of a college season) 40-29-2, including a few outstanding losses, including our personal favorite, Southern Mississippi beating Savannah State, 56-0, but giving 56½ -- a great hook by any standard. 

But The Real Top 25 isn’t limited to mere college footballer, as you know, so let’s get down to slanders, especially in this NFL weekend. 

1. ALABAMA (2-0, 1-0-1): Pushing against Western Kentucky is probably not so much as of blemish to Nick Saban, but who the hell asked him?

2. FLORIDA STATE (2-0, 2-0): Up next: At Louisville. Sick of the hype?

3. LOUISVILLE (2-0, 2-0): Up next: Florida State. Sick of the hype now? 

4. OHIO STATE (2-0, 2-0): Trying to catch Oklahoma emotionally flat after the Sooners edged Louisiana-Monroe 59-17. 

5. SANTIAGO CASILLA (2-4, 31-8): Giant fans hate him to the depths of their pickled marrows, but he still has been unable to catch Chicago’s Nate Jones, who continues to own the blown saves category for a team that is far worse than San Francisco. Yay moronic stats! Yay irrational rage! Yay your favorite team! 

6. CINCINNATI BENGALS (1-0, 0-0-1) and NEW YORK GIANTS (1-0, 0-0-1): The first push of the year is always like opening your first present on Christmas morning, and finding out that Grandma and Grandpa inadvertently wrapped hospital pajamas instead of that Pokemon snuggie they thought you’d like –- even though your 37 and wanted a pony.

7. BILLY BUTLER (you don’t want to know, honestly): The A’s admit a mistake on the NFL’s opening Sunday -– and who says they don’t understand promotion? 

8. BIG 12/MAC and REPLAY CREWS: Suspended after turning the end of the Central Michigan-Oklahoma State game into a complete Lucy skit.

9. JACK DEL RIO (1-0, 1-0): Goes for the win on the road, which you’re supposed to do as a coach. Gets the win, which Raider teams typically don’t. Punked ESPN for pointing out that going for two in that situation was contraindicated, which Raider coaches have never done.

10. BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY (1-0): After hosting 150,000 for Tennessee-Virginia Tech, plans to hold a game next year while simultaneously running a NASCAR race, just to see how close a game can come to a fiery wreck in Turn 2.

11. DARLINGTON MOTOR SPEEDWAY: The traditionally small track plays to have North Carolina play East Carolina on a 70-yard field.

12. BERNARD SCHIRMER (0-1 arrest record, as far as we know): The player for Mt. San Antonio JC celebrated his team’s loss to Ventura by coldcocking the referee, and was, in fact, arrested. In doing so, he easily beat USC’s CHUMA EDOGA, who was ejected 90 seconds into the Trojans-Utah State game for shoving an official.

13. ARIZONA (1-1, 0-2): Had to rally desperately to beat Grambling State, a quality 1-AA team but still not good enough to convince Bear Down fans that Rich Rodriguez shouldn’t be extradited to Arizona State.

14. BAYLOR (2-0, 1-1): Leads the nation in penalties after two weeks, and there’s a lesson in that for all of us.

15. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS (0-1, 1-0): Blew a comfortable lead to lose in overtime, thus further enhancing their arguments for that November stadium ballot initiative.

16. ANGELIQUE KERBER (2-0): The new No. 1 in women’s tennis, which should lead to lot of debates among casual fans around the central topic, “Serena Williams is No. 1, right?”

17. SAVANNAH STATE (0-2, 2-0): Lost in successive weeks to Georgia Southern, 54-0, and then Southern Miss, 56-0. AND COVERED BOTH TIMES!

18. THE MEAC IN GENERAL (ick): Other than power North Carolina A&T, they have won one of 19 games and been outscored by an aggregate of 911-224, an average per-game defeat of 47-11.

19. FORDHAM (1-1, 0-1): Rallied from a not-close loss to Navy in Week 1 by making sure they didn’t overlook Elizabeth City State.

20. UNIVERSITY OF MARY (0-2, uncharted): After two weeks, still seeking that elusive first point.

21. OREGON  (2-0, 0-2): Can’t cover against UC Davis, can’t cover against Virginia. If Mark Helfrich doesn’t cover at Nebraska next week, expect his name to crop up as the next coach at Oregon State.

22. PNEUMONIA (no record): Spelling isn’t as easy as it looks, apparently.

23. TERRANCE WILLIAMS (0-1): Getting out of bounds isn't as easy as it looks, apparently.

24. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (1-0, 0-1): Covering a big number isn’t as easy as it looks, apparently.

25. STANFORD (1-0, 1-0): Played nobody. Did nothing. Took the weekend off. Not running into people at high rates of speed a lot of times IS as easy as it looks, apparently.

And until next week, go away.

NCAA Tournament schedule 2019: Bracket, dates, times for 68-team field


NCAA Tournament schedule 2019: Bracket, dates, times for 68-team field

The 2019 NCAA Tournament field was announced Sunday, with Duke, Virginia, North Carolina and Gonzaga earning the four No. 1 seeds.

The tournament will have a definite Northern California flavor, as Mississippi State, Liberty, Virginia Tech, Saint Louis, Wisconsin, Oregon, Kansas State and UC Irvine all will play their first-round games in San Jose. Additionally, the West Coast Conference champion Saint Mary's Gaels earned a No. 11 seed, and will face No. 6 Villanova in Hartford, Conn.

Below are the matchups, game days and scheduled start times for each first-round game. Let the bracket-filling commence!

At Columbia, S.C.
No. 1 Duke vs. No. 16 NC Central/North Dakota State -- Friday, March 22 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT
No. 8 VCU vs. No. 9 UCF -- Friday, March 22 at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT

At San Jose, Calif.
No. 5 Mississippi State vs. No. 12 Liberty -- Friday, March 22 at 7:15 p.m. ET/4:15 p.m. PT
No. 4 Virginia Tech vs. No. 13 Saint Louis -- Friday, March 22 at 9:55 p.m. ET/6:55 p.m. PT

At Jacksonville, Fla.
No. 6 Maryland vs. No. 11 Belmont/Temple -- Thursday, March 21 at 3 p.m. ET/Noon PT
No. 3 LSU vs. No. 14 Yale -- Thursday, March 21 at 12:30 p.m. ET/9:30 a.m. PT

At Des Moines, Iowa
No. 7 Louisville vs. No. 10 Minnesota -- Thursday, March 21 at Noon ET/9 a.m. PT
No. 2 Michigan State vs. No. 15 Bradley -- Thursday, March 21 at 2:30 p.m. ET/11:30 a.m. PT

At Columbia, S.C.

No. 1 Virginia vs. No. 16 Gardner-Webb -- Friday, March 22 at 3 p.m. ET/Noon PT
No. 8 Ole Miss vs. No. 9 Oklahoma -- Friday, March 22 at 12:30 p.m. ET/9:30 a.m. PT

At San Jose, Calif.
No. 5 Wisconsin vs. No. 12 Oregon -- Friday, March 22 at 4:20 p.m. ET/1:20 p.m. PT
No. 4 Kansas State vs. No. 13 UC Irvine -- Friday, March 22 at 1:50 p.m. ET/10:50 a.m. PT

At Hartford, Conn.
No. 6 Villanova vs. No. 11 Saint Mary's -- Thursday, March 21 at 7:15 p.m. ET/4:15 p.m. PT
No. 3 Purdue vs. No. 14 Old Dominion -- Thursday, March 21 at 9:45 p.m. ET/6:45 p.m. PT

At Columbus, Ohio
No. 7 Cincinnati vs. No. 10 Iowa -- Friday, March 22 at Noon ET/9 a.m. PT
No. 2 Tennessee vs. No. 15 Colgate -- Friday, March 22 at 2:30 p.m. ET/11:30 a.m. PT

At Columbus, Ohio
No. 1 North Carolina vs. No. 16 Iona -- Friday, March 22 at 9:15 p.m. ET/6:15 p.m. PT
No. 8 Utah State vs. No. 9 Washington -- Friday, March 22 at 6:45 p.m. ET/3:45 p.m. PT

At Salt Lake City, Utah
No. 5 Auburn vs. No. 12 New Mexico State -- Thursday, March 21 at 1:20 p.m. ET/10:20 a.m. PT
No. 4 Kansas vs. No. 13 Northeastern -- Thursday, March 21 at 3:50 p.m. ET/12:50 p.m. ET

At Tulsa, Okla.
No. 6 Iowa State vs. No. 11 Ohio State -- Friday, March 22 at 9:45 p.m. ET/6:45 p.m. PT
No. 3 Houston vs. No. 14 Georgia State -- Friday, March 22 at 7:15 p.m. ET/4:15 p.m. PT

At Jacksonville, Fla.
No. 7 Wofford vs. No. 10 Seton Hall -- Thursday, March 21 at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT
No. 2 Kentucky vs. No. 15 Abilene Christian -- Thursday, March 21 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT

At Salt Lake City, Utah
No. 1 Gonzaga vs. No. 16 Fairleigh Dickinson/Prairie View A&M -- Thursday, March 21 at 7:15 p.m. ET/4:15 p.m. PT
No. 8 Syracuse vs. No. 9 Baylor -- Thursday, March 21 at 9:55 p.m. ET/6:55 p.m. PT

At Hartford, Conn.
No. 5 Marquette vs. No. 12 Murray State -- Thursday, March 21 at 4:20 p.m. ET/1:20 p.m. PT
No. 4 Florida State vs. No. 13 Vermont -- Thursday, March 21 at 1:50 p.m. ET/10:50 a.m. PT

At Tulsa, Okla.
No. 6 Buffalo vs. No. 11 Arizona State/St. John's -- Friday, March 22 at 3:50 p.m. ET/12:50 p.m. PT
No. 3 Texas Tech vs. No. 14 Northern Kentucky -- Friday, March 22 at 1:20 p.m. ET/10:20 a.m. PT

At Des Moines, Iowa
No. 7 Nevada vs. No. 10 Florida -- Thursday, March 21 at 6:45 p.m. ET/3:45 p.m. PT
No. 2 Michigan vs. No. 15 Montana -- Thursday, March 21 at 9:15 p.m. ET/6:15 p.m. PT

Quinnen Williams, possible Raiders draft target, misses mark in Alabama's loss


Quinnen Williams, possible Raiders draft target, misses mark in Alabama's loss

SANTA CLARA -- Quinnen Williams proved Monday night that he can talk a big game, even if he doesn’t play one.

The Alabama defensive tackle, whom many project to be a top-five pick if he leaves school for the 2019 NFL draft, didn’t exactly show out in the College Football Playoff National Championship at Levi’s Stadium. The redshirt sophomore finished with just four total tackles (three solo, one assist) and 1.5 for loss.

Williams went relatively unnoticed in Clemson’s 44-16 rout, except for this first-quarter stop that showcased his power.

Williams, who entered the game tied for second on the Crimson Tide with eight sacks this season, didn’t register any noticeable pass rush -- to be fair, no one on Alabama did -- as the Tigers handily won the title.

Still, Williams wasn’t that impressed by what he saw from the now-national champions.

“They really didn’t do anything that caught us off guard,” Williams said. “We knew everything that was coming. They ran zone. They ran go routes, 50-50 balls.

“[Clemson QB] Trevor Lawrence threw the ball, and it looked like he put it on the money. He didn’t drop dimes, none of that. He threw it up, and the receivers made plays. All the respect to the receivers.”

While Williams later called Lawrence “good,” his comments were reminiscent of his pre-Orange Bowl words on Kyler Murray, when he smartly stopped himself from criticizing Oklahoma’s Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback. Williams showed no such restraint this time, and while you could chalk it up to the hurt of losing a national title game, NFL teams surely will ask him in pre-draft interviews about how he'll handle such situations.

As for his NFL draft status, Williams didn’t want to say much, claiming he really hadn’t thought about the possibility of turning pro after the season.

“I don’t know yet, man,” he said. “I got to go home, watch this film first, get with my teammates and let them know, man, everything.”

New Raiders general manager Mike Mayock, whose team has been linked to Williams with the No. 4 overall pick in numerous mock drafts, saw the defensive tackle in person Monday. Whether he liked what he saw or heard remains to be seen over the next three months.