As we step into 2013, it’s time to share my skills at looking into the future.
Here are three predictions for the New Year.
ONE - Tim Tebow will play for his third team in three seasons and reveal himself, once again, as a superb athlete who lacks the skill set required to play quarterback in the NFL.
There are fans. And then there are Tebow fans. All fans, as in fanatics, practice in worship. Tebow fans travel somewhere beyond worship. All fans are paranoid. Tebow fans are more paranoid. All fans struggle with the truth about their heroes. Tebow fans, blinded by love, have extremely blurry vision.
The Jets quickly discovered what the Broncos discovered during Tebow’s two seasons in Colorado:
He does not possess an NFL-caliber throwing arm.
In his final three losses with the Broncos, Tebow completed 28-of-78 passes (36 percent) and tossed five interceptions to go with one touchdown.
This observation about Tebow’s arm is nothing personal; although Tebow fans will shout that I’m anti-Timmy. He’s an inspiring young man, and if an NFL team ever installs an Air Force-style option attack, he would be the ideal leader.
But the NFL is passing league, and Tebow passes resemble wounded vultures. And those are the good throws.
He’s destined to join a long line – an immense line, really – of quarterbacks who won the Heisman Trophy and faltered in the NFL. Tebow will join Terry Baker, John Huarte, Gary Beban, Pat Sullivan, Andre Ware, Gino Torretta, Danny Wuerffel and Matt Leinart (among others) as NFL busts.
To close this Tebow section, I just wanted to give a shout-out to Denver attorney Dan Caplis, who offered his views in 2012 about the Broncos' pursuit of Peyton Manning.
“The facts … show,” Caplis wrote in The Gazette in March, “Manning is not a more effective quarterback than Tebow.”
Nice analysis, Dan.
TWO – Troy Calhoun will end Air Force’s football malaise by installing a more varied, more daring offense.
The Falcons struggled to a 13-13 record over the past two seasons. Part of this struggle has to do with an undersized defense, but the bigger problem has been a sputtering offense. The Falcons' attack ran out of fuel at the end of this season, dooming the team to its first losing record since 2006.
The pieces are there for a comeback.
Halfback Jon Lee is one of the more talented players in recent Air Force history. If Lee can learn to hang on to the football – and I believe he will - he could flirt with 1,400 yards next season.
Receiver/running back Ty MacArthur is shifty, determined, elusive. He should join Lee as a dangerous sidekick.
Quarterback Kale Pearson brings quickness, speed, arm strength and extreme nerve to the offense. The troubling question about Pearson, who’s only 5-foot-9, 175 pounds, will be his health.
Connor Dietz and Tim Jefferson boast bigger frames than Pearson and struggled to stay on the field. It’s not an easy gig playing quarterback in Calhoun’s system.
Calhoun has lifted the Falcons before. He will spend the offseason tinkering with his offense and pushing his players to get bigger and stronger.
He will deliver a better team in 2013.
THREE – I like this Air Force men's basketball team. The Falcons look excited instead of scared after coach Dave Pilipovich made the revolutionary move of liberating his shooters.
For the past decade, I’ve listened to Air Force basketball coaches talk about the immense might of the Mountain West Conference. Most of the time, the MWC was actually mediocre.
Here’s the problem for Pilipovich:
This season the MWC is mighty.
Still, I see the Falcons fighting to a 7-9 record in the Mountain West in a strong first full season for Pilipovich.
ALSO IN SPORTS
• Boise State to stay in the Mountain West.
• Broncos playoff tickets sell out in 9 minutes.
• Andy Reid among 6 NFL coaches sacked in firing frenzy.