Licht Doesn’t Care About SEC (Or MAC)

February 21st, 2014
khalil Mack 0221

There’s no fear of Khalil Mac at One Buc

Joe knows many local college football fans grow bitter when the Bucs draft a guy out of the Big Ten. The same crowd sneers when a guy from the Big XII is selected. The same fans scoff if a draftee (not from Florida State) played in the ACC.

And the same crowd grabs a bottle of Absolut if a player from the MAC is chosen.

Why, these bitter Bucs fans say, only players from the SEC should be considered!

You know what new Bucs general manager Jason Licht thinks? He believes the conference affiliation of a player carries about as much importance as the hair color of the player’s girlfriend.

Speaking before Joe and the assembled NFL media yesterday at the NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Licht explained if a player can play, he can play, no matter where he played.

“Good players are coming out of all divisions and all levels,” Licht said. “I guess in the back of your mind your saying to yourself that you would like to see him go against top competition. But, really, you can tell on tape that he’s a good football player. “

Let Joe just type this: elite NFL quarterbacks are Big Ten products. One with two rings is a MAC product. The Bucs’ best player is from the Big XII. And Bucs fans (some of them) are pining for wide receiver Sammy Watkins, an ACC guy.

So, no, it really doesn’t matter where a player comes from, so long as he can play. Remember that when the Bucs draft players this May not from the SEC.

23 Responses to “Licht Doesn’t Care About SEC (Or MAC)”

  1. lurker Says:

    so true…

    people choose colleges for different reasons e.g. to be near home, to get playing time.

  2. BucsfaninChina Says:

    Dude is a friggin beast. At the price that proven pass rushers are going for these days, Bucs gotta take him if he is there at 7

  3. lurker Says:

    proven pass rusher make more than proven qb’s? nope.

  4. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Schools move to different conferences all the time….so the conference makes little difference.

    MW19 came from Syracuse…..Big East now ACC….but the important thing is he has a stripper pole in his living room and mattresses on his lawn after parties.

    Josh Freeman came from K-State (Big 12) and he danced for Mike

    So…it matters not the conference…each player is unique.

  5. Pro LIbertate Says:

    That’s not quite what he said. (Really? Joe was there and spoke to Licht outside of the media frenzy.–Joe) Talent can come from anywhere. It’s preferable if you can see the player compete against the better college teams, but it’s not an absolute requirement. No one disputes that Jackson State or UCF put superstars in the NFL; it’s just that it sometimes is a little more useful to see that talent challenged. In any college league, the talent is not as concentrated as it is in the NFL, so tape can certainly be deceiving. Leagues without defense, for instance, can make QBs look awesome who aren’t.

    I think the slide of the Big Ten (for instance) has upset NFL GMs and scouts more than most people, simply because it used to be a more competitive conference. Without the same level of talent, it’s just that much harder to evaluate talent when competing with similar levels of talent.

  6. williethewonder Says:

    Ray Perkins had a thing for the SEC, picking Keith McCants one pick ahead of Junior Seau, and then next year taking Charles McRae ahead of Herman Moore.

  7. Luther Says:

    Tampabaybucfan…trying my hardest not to bust a gut reading that.

    Garrapolo plays at a small school and I would gladly take him over AJ McCarron from an SEC school.

  8. PRBucFan Says:

    But Manchild is great because he beat Saban’s “SEC” defense…

  9. rayjay1122 Says:

    I agree that where a player comes out of college should not determine his draft status. Look at K. Mack for instance. Buffalo is not a football powerhouse or in a top conference yet he is highly regarded. Most people worry about level of competition as an arguement for avoiding weaker conferences but I think that if a player can play great at his position then he should be given consideration in the draft. Remember the Appalachian State WR Jackson who we drafted seemingly based on a good game against Michigan a few years back? Well we know how that worked out. A players entire body of work should be carefully evaluated regardless of conference they played in at college instead of conference hype or one good game against a team from a BCS top conference.

  10. cbell96825 Says:

    Vincent Jackson-northern colorado
    Doug Martin-boise st
    Donald Penn-utah st
    That’s three Pro Bowlers just on our team that came from small non bcs schools. You can find talent in any round out of any school. If a dude can ball it shouldnt matter what school they played at.

  11. Chef Paul Says:

    “Joe knows many local college football fans grow bitter when the Bucs draft a guy out of the Big Ten. The same crowd sneers when a guy from the Big XII is selected. The same fans scoff if a draftee (not from Florida State) played in the ACC.”

    Do people really do that? That sounds like the type of person to just ignore and get on with your life and be better off for not paying attention to such drivel.

  12. Joe Says:

    Do people really do that? That sounds like the type of person to just ignore and get on with your life and be better off for not paying attention to such drivel.

    Go back and look at the comments when Akeem Spence and Will Gholston were drafted. Read (some; a few, granted) of the comments about Sammy Watkins.

  13. OB Says:

    If I am not mistaken, there are high school and Junior College players also that have done well, so I guess we come down to the person and his ability and character, plus his coaching and team mates, not what he had for breakfast, school, or where he comes from, because if this could be done, give me all Deacon Jones, Merlin Olson, Sapp, Brooks, Lynch, Ronde Barber, GMC, etc., but they just come from anywhere.

  14. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    Jerry Rice- Mississippi Valley State
    Ray Rice – Rutgers
    Jason Paul Pierre – USF

    I like Licht’s attitude, about not being tied into any school or conference.

  15. Orca Says:

    Again JBF making up stuff… Guessing maybe 5% of fans care about what conference a player comes from.

    Not playing nice, fair or honest, Orca. Joe hopes your day improves. –Joe

  16. Dougy balls Says:

    How is joe making up stuff when he is quoting straight from licht

  17. Joe Says:


    Then it is not made up then, is it?

  18. Orca Says:

    Well, it’s a made-up issue. It’s not an issue. It’s presented above as “many” fans get worked up over conference affiliation… Depending on how you define “many” — as a percentage or sheer numbers — it’s a questionable claim. It’s an overstatement at least. As far as the point of the article, clearly Licht agrees.

  19. Tom S. Says:

    Mack is a great player, will probably be a great player for whoever selects him. But I don’t see him as more than a Sam ‘backer and it doesn’t make a ton of sense to draft someone like that in a Tampa 2-styled defense unless the other options at 7 are significantly less talented.

  20. MadMax Says:

    Watkins, Barr, Lewan….unless Matthews is still there (not a chance of that haha)

  21. bigpoppabuc Says:

    Am I the only one who thinks of Steven Means when I hear hype about Mack? I thought Means was a good pick, but he struggled like a typical rook last season. But look at his highlights from Buffalo and they’re as impressive as Mack’s. Should where player played determine his draft value? No. The eye in the sky doesn’t lie. But Mack is most definitely not worth a top ten pick.

    Joe has thought this as well, but Means was a fifth-round pick — as a pass rusher. That tells you the league looked at him as a project at best. That has nothing to do with Buffalo.–Joe

  22. mike Says:

    Dilfer put up great numbers in college while at fresno state. But as we all learned, there is a difference when you play against quality players instead of actual student athletes. Maybe not so much for a linebacker or lineman when you can look at footwork, etc. but I would think twice before taking a second tier qb (Bortles, bridgewater, carr, etc.)

  23. PRBucFan Says:


    But Manchild is great because he beat Saban’s “SEC” defense…