Archive for the ‘Thursday Night Football’ Category

The Homestretch, Part One

November 15, 2007

Wow. I missed what turned out to be another fantastic weekend of college football, and I’ve just got to make a few comments. First of all, I’d like to congratulate Sylvester Croom and the Mississippi State Bulldogs for winning the battle of Alabama, and announce that the MLBGG will no longer use the term “Croomed.” I think that he’s earned that, along with not getting fired this season. Beating this year’s Kentucky, Alabama and Auburn is no fluke.

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From deepsouthsports.net. Please visit the site for the most delightful photoshop ever.

Also, don’t get too fired up, Illinois fans. Just watch and see if you don’t lose to Northwestern. That’s the beauty and the pain that comes with Ron Zook. (f*ck) Florida fans may be annoying, but they’re not nuts. That being said, you will have crazy talent coming into your school during the Zook era. That talent will always end up in the Capitol One or Outback Bowl, but you will have talent.

Now, on to the future. There’s so much hatred and contempt coming up in the next few weeks, beginning with this Saturday and the Ohio State-Michigan game. And then Thanksgiving weekend is a veritable hatefest: Kansas and Missouri (140 years of real, genuine contempt); The Egg Bowl (Ole Miss and Mississippi State); Texas & Texas A&M; The Apple Cup between Washington and Washington State; Virginia Tech (salt of the earth) vs. Virginia (brie eating wine drinking snobs); and what I affectionately call the “Hole in the Ground Game” between Auburn and Alabama. ( For those of you not swift enough to figure it out, the optimal result for me would be for the ground to open up under the stadium. It’s officially known as the Iron Bowl.)

But I am getting waaaay ahead of myself here.  Before we start off with the Thursday night game, let’s start with the most important game of the week for both LSU and Michigan fans. LSU is visiting Oxford, Mississippi (speed limit 18 on campus) to attempt to stay on track for a shot in the BCS title game (win out, and we’re in), and to solidify Coach Les’ resume as he heads to Michigan. The bookies have us at 18 point favorites over Ole Miss. I will be the first to admit that there is no way LSU will win by that much. I worry, in fact, that my Tigers  will be on cruise control, having won the West this past weekend. But, the Tigers do have the terrible memories of the game we should have lost to Ole Miss last year, and the fact that this is an away game to keep them on track.  Ole Miss has also taken some other top SEC teams to the last quarter,  and the boys will know that as well.   Despite having to face Arkansas for the Boot next Friday, I do not think anyone at LSU is looking ahead to the championship game. No one wants to be playing in some New Year’s Day Bowl, or at this point, even in a regular BCS bowl.  I foresee, as usual, a slow start that will give me a headache, and a pull away due to the sheer talent differential between the two schools. Plus, Ed Oregeron may bigger balls and less brain that my beloved, soon to be freezing his ass off, Coach Les.  LSU wins, but not anywhere close to the 18 point spread.

Thursday night, I’ll find myself cheering for the morons who stomped on the Eye of the Tiger last season. Oregon at Arizona is a huge game for the Ducks, since they were humilated by Arizona last year. A win keeps them in the national title picture, a loss, and they’re thinking about the Holiday Bowl (the Pac-10 really needs to work on some better tie-ins). I’ll be cheering for Arizona, but I think Oregon will run up the score.

Virginia Tech hosts a Miami team in total disarray. If it weren’t Miami, I might feel bad. Miami’s only shot at this game is the fact Virginia Tech has virtually no offense. Tech wins, but in a closer game than it should be. A couple of big plays by Miami’s defense could turn this a very unpleasant Senior Day in Blacksburg, but here’s hoping that won’t happen.

West Virginia at Cincinnati (Can anyone please tell me what a Bearcat is? Please?) This could be a trap game for the Mountaineers, as they had to labor mightily to beat Louisville at home.  Some of the media conspiracy is picking Cincy to win this game (anyone who thinks Brian Kelly is at Cincy next year, raise your hand. No takers? Didn’t think so).  I’ll go with the Mountaineers, just because I expect to see some of these people soon for a Christmas party.  I would note that the Bearcats have a better defense than Louisville, and are officially the second best team in Ohio. Don’t screw this up, Mountaineers; the Orange Bowl committee is counting on your ticket sales.

Lloyd Carr’s last game: GO BIG BLUE! Seriously, the only reason I care about this game is that I want the winner of the Big Ten Plus One to have lost to a Division 1-AA school, and I also want Les to see what he’s getting into, and what he’s losing. Andouille is better than brats.

Wisconsin at Minnesota: In addition to heading to the Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando, Wisconsin, a pre-season sleeper pick for Big Ten champions, can console themselves with keeping Paul Bunyan’s axe.  (Terrible things will happen to me if Minnesota wins this game. Terrible.)

Boston College at Clemson: as always, the question is whether Clemson can put together a whole game. I say that this time, they can.  Clemson wins big.

Iowa State at Kansas: I’ve been hating on them all season. Since that seems to be doing them quite well, I will continue hating on them, and pick Iowa State, although the Cyclones will be lucky to lose by 30.

Missouri at Kansas State: this here, folks, is my real and genuine upset pick.  Missouri has been dazzling this season, and Kansas State has fallen off dramatically, losing to the Cyclones (ick) and being treated like an escaped ‘ho by Nebraska the last two weeks. Ron Prince and those K-State Wildcats need to redeem themselves, and heck, they might be pissed off by that Missouri t-shirt, too. ( If I were engaged in negative recruiting, I would sure point out how Missouri students are still celebrating confederate heroes. Worse than Ole Miss!) I think Missouri may get caught looking to next weekend, and Kansas State isn’t quite bad enough to look past. Kansas State in the upset.

Oklahoma at Texas Tech: Ah, the Red Raiders. They beat up on the Baylors of the world, and then when they run into the top half of the Big Twelve food chain, they get slapped around. I see no reason for that to stop this weekend. I think that Oklahoma, more than any other team in the Top 10 in the BCS, is on a mission. The past five or so years have not been all that great for the Sooners. They lost to LSU in a BCS title game that the media conspiracy (and annoying Pete Carroll) said they didn’t belong in. The 2005 season was wiped off the books thanks to a too-generous booster and some dumb kids who, lo and behold, acted like bad kids, and took money.  They did get screwed last year against Oregon, and then they lost to Boise State, last year’s America’s Darlings (and that was awesome).  I’m not sure that any team should really be thrilled about facing them from now through the bowls, because they’re going to open up a big can of whoop-ass on everyone they play.  Someone from Texas Tech will get broken on Saturday. (I’d just like to announce, so I can get back into Cliff and Heather’s house, that I am not pro-Sooner in any way, and I’m sure Texas will open a can of whoop-ass, too. Just not in the Big 12 title game.)

Two games I will be paying a lot of attention to, as either Georgia or Tennessee, both of which are very capable of beating LSU when they actually show up, will play the Tigers in Atlanta:

Kentucky at Georgia: I just don’t believe Georgia can keep it up week after week. I think the Bulldogs, beat Kentucky, but it will be a harder game than it should be.  The optimal result in this game for me is four overtimes (doesn’t matter who wins) and Matthew Stafford and/or (ok, especially) Knowshon Moreno suffering a severe ACL sprain, broken collarbone, or completely separated shoulder.

Vanderbilt at Tennessee:  Tennessee should win this game, like they should always beat Vanderbilt.  But Tennesse has a way of say, shutting down the number one pick in the 2008 NFL draft one week, and then needing to stop a two point conversion against a service academy the next. I can’t say the smart kids can’t do it, but they probably won’t.

(You may be more able to tell which team troubles me more from the above. )

Next week, the MLBGG bids goodbye to the Darren McFadden Experience and his coach, Houston Nutt, and I tell Rich Rodriguez that not only is Baton Rouge is a great place to raise a family, but why he should head back to Louisiana, where he first made his name as an offensive genius. 

Also, we’ll get a bunch of names who are supposedly up to be LSU’s next coach, and try to figure out where Tommy Tuberville is going next.  Texas A&M is apparently hoping they can do better with another person who coached in Alabama than with the last one. My Texas fans had best hope he doesn’t head to College Station.

GO DUKE!!

And welcome back to the NFL, Ricky. Hoped you visited rehab (no, no, no).

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The Time for Mourning is Done

October 18, 2007

It’s time for another weekend of football, so my period of mourning must end. But first, a little post-mortem on the LSU-UK game. Many other sites have done in depth analyses, so I won’t re-do what’s already been done well. 

 My response to the game was to engage in a stream of profanity for well over four hours, which was occasionally punctuated by a high pitched scream. Then at the end of regulation, I turned off my phone. Then I kept screaming. The Kentucky offensive line deserves high praise, as does Andre Woodson. As much as I’d like to blame the coaches, Gary Crowton and Les Miles did not drop a perfectly thrown pass that would have made the game 31-14 in the 4th quarter. Coach Pelini did not blow a 27-14 lead on his own.  LSU had the chance to put the game away late and did not.  The Tigers had the chance to make stops, and didn’t.  But they can’t dwell on that game, as the other Tigers from the middle of nowhere are coming into the unfriendly confines of Tiger Stadium.

I am seeing a repeat of last year’s game, as both teams will be utterly worn out from their supreme efforts of last weekend (unlike some teams from other conferences, that continue to play in-state rivals). Auburn totally shut down the Arkansas offense (Felix Jones and the DMcFE), avenging last year’s loss.  (And I understand that Coach Tuberville took some time to tour the Arkansas weight room and athletic dorm). Last weekend must be put out of the team’s collective psyche (defense, that means YOU). LSU must find a way, through whichever unit, to put up 3 touchdowns.  The Tigers can’t let it come down to Auburn making a field goal, because Wes Bynum has downright elephantine testicles, and liquid nitrogen running through his veins.  If LSU can get to that magic number of 21, Auburn will have a very hard time, because they generally can’t score that many points.  Obviously Auburn shut down The Darren McFadden Experience, but I can’t tell if that is a result of Houston Nutt being an idiot who didn’t get him enough touches, Arkansas having absolutely no passing threat, Houston Nutt being a moron, or Auburn’s defense being that good. It’s likely a combination of all those factors.  Let’s reward the faith the computers and pollsters still have, eh, darlings?: LSU 21 Auburn 13

Now, lets skip back to Thursday, and what really is the Big East Game of the Year, South Florida (2!) at Rutgers.  I’m not going against the Bulls. I know that Rutgers ran all over the Bulls last year, but that was last year.  I’ll just put it like this: if the Bulls weren’t scared at Auburn, and shut down The Greatest Offensive System in the History of College Football (TM), then they aren’t gonna be scared of Thursday night in New Jersey.  I’d make some joke about some Rutgers fan popping a cap in the Bulls’ ass, but that’s just as likely to happen in Tampa.  South Florida continues the dream season.

Mississippi State at WVU: The Moutaineers have had a couple of weeks to get ready, and MSU just exhausted themselves against the Volunteers (good job not blowing that game, Coach Fulmer).  The Bulldog defense is capable of giving West Virginia fits for most of the game; however, the offense is prehistoric and run by a kid who couldn’t start for a top Texas high school team.  The Moutaineers should win against the Bulldogs, but other superior teams have been Croomed before.  My West Virginia people have been warned.

Cincinnati at Pittsburgh:  Bearcats, as Brian Kelly continues his job interview. Boy, does Pitt suck! If your coach tears his achilles three days before your game, the football goddesses are not on your side.

Texas at Baylor: Texas. I got nothing else. I just mention the Longhorns because one of my friends is a fan. Did you know Mike Singletary went to Baylor? I think that was the high point of that program’s existence.

Oklahoma at Iowa State: To top Texas, Oklahoma will feel compelled to hang 70 on the Cyclones. And they will succeed.

Vanderbilt (we can read!) at South Carolina: I think Coach Superior will use the Commodores to experiment on. If the ‘Cocks had the offense, Coach Superior would run up the score.  Poor things. Vandy always does put up a good fight, but they usually fail. 

Tennessee at Alabama: A measure of how far this game has fallen this season: instead of being the SEC Game of the Week on CBS, sponsored by Home Depot, or an ESPN prime time game, The Third Saturday in October is now the 12:30 game on the network formerly known as Jefferson Pilot. (I don’t know what it’s called now). Let’s see.  I really want Tennesse to stomp on Alabama and smack them around like the crimson clad bitches they are. The game is at Alabama. Alabama does not have the talent that Tennessee has.  Fulmer has not managed to blow a game in a couple of weeks.  Therefore, Alabama and their traitorous bastard of a asshat coach will win. 

USC at The Pyrite Dome: Perhaps this week, USC will remember how to put up 70 points again, and realize that their fourth string could start at the Pyrite Dome. Come on, Trojans! America is counting on you.  If the Trojans don’t win by 20, something is seriously wrong.

Michigan State at Ohio State:  Ohio State continues its tough Big Ten Plus One schedule. Michigan State has begun its annual tailspin.  Ohio State.

Florida at Kentucky: The SEC Game of the Week, on CBS.  Boy, the best option for me would be for a sinkhole to open up under Commonwealth Stadium, revealing yet another massive Kentucky cave complex.  That, unfortunately, is unlikely to happen.  The question for Kentucky is if they can duplicate last weekend’s effort. The only thing in their favor is that the game is in Lexington. I don’t know the Wildcats can repeat last weeks heroics against LSU. (f*ck) Florida is coming off a weekend off and two losses, which are likely to make the Gators very, very angry. Back to back comebacks are hard, especially in the SEC.   I’ll do something which makes my skin crawl and my stomach flip: I will pick the rested Gators and the Timmy Show to win at Kentucky.  Enjoy this season before your program graduates and your coach moves on to another job, UK fans. I understand Nebraska will have an opening available soon.  

That being said, if Wildcat fans rush the field again if Kentucky beats the Gators….act like you’ve been there before, people.

There are some other games that I have virtually no interest in:

Texas Tech @ Missouri:  Go with the over.

Cal @UCLA: everything says that Cal should win this game easily. So I’ll pick UCLA.

Kansas at Colorado: Colorado. I still think Kansas is a mirage.

Kansas State at Oklahoma State: Kansas State, just because purple is my favorite color…

Oregon at Washington: …but I’m not crazy. The ugly uniforms win.

Michigan at Illinois: Illini fans, there was a reason Ron Zook got fired. You are about to find out why.  Michigan. (The MLBGG is an unabashed Wolverine supporter for the remainder of the 2007 season, as she yearns to see the team that lost to a 1-AA team win the “Big” Ten Plus One. I’m sending some positive thoughts to Mike Hart’s ankle.)

There’s nothing in the ACC worth discussing. The big ACC game is next week, Boston College (who’s played no one) at Virginia Tech (who was dismantled)(Strange things will be afoot at the home of my favorite Tech fan that night. I guarantee it).  I was thinking that there were no meaningful ACC games on this weekend, and then I realized Florida State and Miami are facing each other. Ten years ago, discussions of that game would have opened Sportcenter. Now it’s just filler bewteen the SEC main courses.  Enjoy all the Wake Forest and Virginia you want, ACC boosters, but you better hope that Miami and FSU can get back to what they were sooner than later.

Mike Hart is definitely expected back against Minnesota.

That’s all.

Oh, for one week, the NFL does exist.

SECentric, and How Kentucky Ruined West Virginia’s Season

September 23, 2007

So yesterday was long, but fun. My half marathon was fun and I got my t-shirt and medal. I went to brunch, got my nails done, and then headed out to the middle of nowhere in Maryland for my friend’s wedding, which was beautiful and wonderful and had an open bar. Spiffy!  In another spiffy note, my friend’s husband is from southern West Virginia, Williamson, I believe. He is cool.  When I got together with my friends from high school, we basically regressed to fifteen year olds. I met my friend’s new boyfriend: the best way I can describe them is to recommend the chick flick “Something New,” with Sanaa Lathan and Simon Baker.  That pretty much sums them up in a Hollywoodish nutshell. I am not being facetious in anyway. Anyhoo, it was a lovely day, except that it kept me from my regular and favorite Saturday activity.

I only got the chance to see the first quarter of LSU’s win over South Carolina. Of course, the opening few minutes of the quarter were not pleasing to me, as South Carolina dinked it’s way to a touchdown and early 7-0 lead. (Here’s a tidbit for you Big East homers: LSU is dead last in red zone defense in the SEC. This is because LSU’s opponents have been inside the 20 yard line twice this season; once was the end of the Virginia Tech game, and the other was against Coach Superior’s ‘Cocks). Once Bo Pelini adjusted to what South Carolina had to serve up, which is what championship caliber coaches do, the universe righted itself, and everything was OK. As I noted in a prior post, I didn’t expect this to be an easy game for LSU, and I didn’t think the Tigers would blow out South Carolina.  The coach who underestimates a Superior-coached college team does so at his peril.  Matt Flynn was gimpy, Early Doucet was out, and it was pouring rain the whole game. But I’m not gonna make excuses for the Tigers. They already know that allowing 16 points, 261 yards (17 rushing yards on 27 attempts) at home to South Carolina was not acceptable:

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/columns/story?columnist=schlabach_mark&id=3031943&lpos=spotlight&lid=tab2pos1

To put all the bellyaching in the proper perspective, however, it was a victory over a ranked conference opponent, and even LSU’s kicker is fast.  

I’ll take this “mediocre” victory over Coach Superior’s SEC East team over a blowout of say, a Conference USA team coached by the son of a senile ESPN analyst any day.  To answer a question that popped up via text message, LSU lost some depth as it had four players taken in the first round of the 2007 draft: Jamarcus Russell, Laron Landry, Craig Davis and Dwayne Bowe.  I’d say four out of thirty-two first round picks counts as many.

And if Matt Flynn can’t play, LSU will be all right with Ryan Perrilloux and some crazy-freaking-good defense. I’m not sure the same is true if Pat White goes down in a freak accident, tripping over one of his own linemen, because he’s not going down to a Big East defense (well, maybe South Florida.)

Speaking of South Florida, I’m looking forward to the Big East game of the year this Friday night. It will likely decide who gets to go play in the Orange Bowl, as former national championship contender Louisville looks to be headed for a Spartan-like swoon.  Eventually, the inability to play defense will kill a team.  Now, I wasn’t expecting it to kill Louisville so fast and so dead, but there you go.  Louisville will be unranked when the new poll comes out, and still has games against Utah and Cincy before playing WVU. Yeesh.  If anyone wants to talk to me about tickets for the now-meaningless November 8 WVU-Louisville game, I’m open to offers.  Miss Fran keeps me from scalping, so it’d be at face value.

Speaking of the team that ended both Louisville and West Virginia’s national title hopes*, Kentucky was down 29-21 in the fourth, and came back with 3 fourth quarter scores.  Kentucky is no joke this year, and clearly not a team to be taken lightly. I worry about the potential for that to be a trap game for the Tigers, coming between hosting Florida and Auburn (no need to worry about LSU being fired up for those games). I do suspect, nay I expect, that some Kentucky player, between then and now, will say something stupid regarding Glenn Dorsey, that Kentucky media will provide sufficient locker room material, and that the clip of Devery Henderson taking the tipped hail mary into one end zone while the Kentucky fans flooded onto the other will be shown about 957 times, especially if both teams are undefeated going into the game. (LSU has my po’ Tulane and (f*ck) Florida, while Kentucky has Florida Atlantic and South Carolina). There are no easy games in the SEC. (Of course, I am also encouraged by the fact that LSU’s coaching staff is also creating their resumes for the several head coaching opportunities that will be popping up nationwide, so I don’t think there will be too many letdowns).  

Speaking of job openings, I just put Houston Nutt on the clock. There’s gonna be a good number of open slots in the SEC after this season.  The top spot of course, will be at Tennessee (after yesterday, I’m not quite so sure I’m ready to write off Lloyd Carr just yet, and that Coach Miles will be heading to Michigan. There is no reason, other than Ohio State, that Michigan can’t win what is proving to be a delightfully average to sub-par Big Ten. That Minnesota-Purdue score looked like it was from the Pac 1.5).  I am going to assume that Florida (with the exception of Tim Tebow) did not come firing on all cylinders for yesterday’s game at Ole Miss, but it looks like the Rebels did. And for that, Phil Fulmer should be embarassed. Ole Miss is not good. They do not have the talent. It is hard to get players (and by that I especially mean talented black kids who make up the bulk of major college football players) who are not from Mississippi to go there.  Ole Miss makes some noise every 15 years or so. But Ole Miss took Florida to the last second, and the kids on Ole Miss never laid down and gave up (and neither did South Carolina, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Georgia, Alabama, the Arkansas (offense) etc, etc). The ONLY SEC team that has appeared to give up at a certain point in the past few years is Tennessee. And that can only be laid at the coach’s feet.  Am I a Tennessee fan? No. I am not a fan of any other SEC school other than LSU (I do hold a spot in my heart for the smart kids). Do I respect what the Tennessee program has meant to college and SEC football? Yes. Do I want to see the Volunteers decline to mediocrity after another few seasons of Fulmer-ball? Absolutely not.  A change must be made in Knoxville at the end of this season.

Speaking of SEC East teams, a hearty hooray for Georgia!! ( The East appears to be the stronger division this year. Bleh). Getting back to the SEC West,  I am praying for Auburn to man up and prepare for an epic game against Florida this Saturday, or at least to play hard and well enough to bang up the Florida offense.  Auburn players, pretend the team opposite of you next Saturday is wearing crimson, and Coach Tuberville, play the sound of private jets flying to Tampa and Cincinnati while drawing up your game plan . That should help. 

Notre Dame is 0-4! That glorious 0-8 start is looking like it will be reality, and I wouldn’t count Air Force and Navy as gimmes for the Pyrite Domers.

* Let me explain myself. At this point, WVU has four teams ahead of it: LSU, (f*ck) Florida, Oklahoma, and USC.  I think that Oklahoma will beat Texas, but if Texas wins that game, Texas will leapfrog WVU.  USC’s only stumbling point in their schedule is the .5 in the Pac 1.5, Cal, and perhaps Oregon, as both of those games are away. And I think the Trojans be more than a wee bit fired up and ready. If Cal beats USC, they will leapfrog WVU.  Ohio State and Wisconsin  both lurk in the Top 10, and either one of those teams suddenly turning it on would also have shot of leapfrogging WVU.

LSU and the Gators will take one or the other out of the equation, but the prevailing wisdom (and likely scenario) is that both teams will meet again in the SEC title game. Should they (eck) split, both LSU and (f*ck) Florida would be probably be ahead of an undefeated WVU on strength of schedule, and the talking coming from Les Miles and Urban Meyer to get their teams into the national championship would be nothing less than extraordinary. Both teams will probably be in BCS bowls, if all plays out as it should. WVU’s signature out of conference win is against a team that defeated Villanova and Florida International. Maryland has Rutgers next, and then plays all conference games, and I don’t see Maryland going much better than 4-3 in the ACC. If Maryland somehow manages to beat Rutgers, kiss any shot of going to the title game goodbye. Rutgers has reached a number 11 ranking by beating up on Buffalo, Navy and Norfolk State, and any loss by Rutgers to a non-creampuff (look out for that Oct. 6 game against the mystery Bearcat team) will be severly punished in the polls, which further hurts WVU.

The Louisville losses really, really hurt WVU’s schedule strength and title chances. Unless WVU whoops on Louisville, that game has now has absolutely no benefit to WVU, and is in fact, incredibly dangerous, as Louisville has not lost the ability to score, and would probably love to spoil WVU’s season.  South Florida is quickly becoming a media darling (media darling= higher ranking), and WVU needs a convincing win over USF (and for the remaining undefeated Big East teams to step up)  to keep from taking another step back in the polls now that the conference schedules have started.  BTW, Mississippi State’s next three games are South Carolina, UAB and Tennessee, and they are now 3-1. It is not inconceivable that the Bulldogs will have a winning record (4-3, or 5-2, depending on which UT team shows for the game. I think that the ‘Cocks beat MSU, simply because of better coaching, although it won’t be a pretty game), when they arrive to Morgantown, which would help WVU’s schedule strength.

I am going to consider leaving my house.  Toodles!

Semi-NFL related notes

September 21, 2007

According to Page Six, Kim Kardashian is now “dating” Terrence Howard (most famous for “Hustle and Flow” and his light eyes,  andmost recently in “The Brave One”), instead of the Savior of My Franchise. I say good riddance. Maybe now he can get back to concentrating on football instead of Kim’s unusually large-for-a-white-girl, soon to be in Playboy, and already on the internet with Ray Jay behind. 

(Of course, if Big Kim and Reggie were dating November 2006 through 5 PM on January 14, 2007, then I beg her to dump Terrence Howard’s old, wrinkled self, and come back to Reggie.  It’s not just him who needs the Power of the Kardshian Ass, it’s the Gulf South and the Katrina Diaspora. Think of the children, Kim. Think of the children.)

(Those Kardashians love them some black folk, eh?)

 In NFL news that won’t made you feel slightly sticky or turned on, depending on what you think about Ms. Kardashian and her potentially detrimental/ positive effect on Saint Reggie, Kevin Everett, the Bills’ player who was paralyzed from the neck down is flying home to Houston, and will try to stand up in the next few weeks, and his doctors are expecting he will walk again.  That is an absolutely beautiful thing.  I’m petitioning the NFL now- if he’s up to it, make him an honorary captain for the Super Bowl, and let him participate in the coin toss.  I’ll sure cry.

The Dennis Franchione Era at Texas A&M continues to go well (snicker).  Texas A&M was either overrated, or Miami showed a flash of being Miami. The ACC gets its first big out of conference win last night, so hooray.  Let’s hope Randy Shannon can get Miami back up to snuff and do it the right way.  Eveyone needs a villain, and college football (and the ACC) needs Miami to not suck. As for Franchione, it’s a good thing re ran out on Alabama, because he would have been fired by now.

There will be no discussion of the NFL on this blog*

September 17, 2007

Well, looks like I won’t be discussing the NFL much this year, specifically a team out of the NFC South.*  But before I never discuss the NFL again for this season: Cincinnati’s defense is really, really bad. I think it took 3 0r 4 games to Cleveland to score that many points last year.  It would br nice if we had someone on the Saints who could tackle. Doesn’t seem like much for ask for.  On a positive note, both of my fantasy teams are doing OK. I’m looking for the Patriots to shut down the Chargers without tape assisstance so I don’t regret benching Philip Rivers for a second week in a row. Starting the Jags’ defense was a good move for me, and Tony Romo continues to get me major points.  

Well, that’s my NFL coverage for the year. Sorry, Courtney. 

So anyhoo, the latest polls came out, and when I’m wrong, I’m wrong. The Mountaineers dropped to number 5, after Florida leapfrogged to number 3 based on their-I’m not sure what to call that game- of Tennessee. A couple of WVU fan sites bitched and moaned on the conspiracy against them and the Big East, specifically bitter about the bias shown by some of the commentators who come from conferences that are not the Big East. Eh.

Anyone actually taking anything that airhead Herbstreit says to heart probably deserves a coronary he can give them.  Welcome to the world of the SEC, WVU boosters. Florida is annointed as the top team every year, and the team to beat every year before the first snap is taken.  The media are just dazzled by the fact Pete Carroll lets them in to meet the players, and watch their “Fun Friday” practices. It’s not just what you put on the field. Pete Carroll talked himself into a share of LSU’s national title, Les Miles talked a 2-loss LSU team that didn’t even reach the SEC Championship into a BCS bowl, and well, Charlie Weis talked himself into being the second coming of Knute Rockne. Seriously, why do you think Rutgers is ranked 11th after having beaten Navy, Norfolk State, and Buffalo? Think the proximity to the New York media has anything at all to do with it? Your coach has to talk up your team as the greatest thing ever.  For whatever reason, that doesn’t happen with the Mountaineers.

Mountaineer fans, since LSU and Florida are both ahead of you, the trick is not to lose to now ranked South Florida on September 28, as Florida should drop, and the Mountaineers should move up, bar any other blowouts of co-conference teams by Cal, Wisconsin or Texas.   That November 8 Louisville game is having the potential to be less and less meaningful. I will make this -not-so-bold statement right now: Louisville will not be ranked by the time of the former Big East Game of the Year.  Their defense is just not good enough. Louisville will have a chance to take out its frustrations on Syracuse next week. They ought to be able to beat North Carolina State, but I think Tom O’Brien will have that team a little more together by the time that game takes place in two weeks.  Utah makes for an interesting Friday night (but I will be engaged in idiocy, or rather supporting the Idiot Brigade), and then Cincy has a defense that the Cardinals do not. I can’t say what the 2 losses will be, but I think Louisville comes out 1-2 from the next three games, dropping them out of the top 25.  The Cardinals are then at UConn, and host Pitt. Again, those should be easy games, but Pitt does have some talent.  WVU fans, once again, you need Louisville to step up until November 8.  Louisville not being as good as advertised hurts you. I’ve gotten the texts about the emergence of Cincinnati, but I’m sorry. It’s Cinncinnati.   Cincinnati being good gives the Big East no weight with the powers that be. After another five years or so, it’ll stop being the school where Bob Huggins used to give kids second chances to go the NBA and not graduate.  South Florida has definitely gotten the media attention that gives the BE the hype it needs (thanks to beating Auburn in Jordan Hare, overrated SEC team or not).  Rutgers plays Maryland next, and needs to beat up on Maryland just like WVU did.  South Florida has North Carolina next, and should be able to win that game before facing WVU. Then USF plays Florida Atlantic and UCF, neither of which should be taken lightly.  Let’s put it this way: if that F_U school wasn’t scared about playing a Big Ten, albeit one that has been fair to middlin’ since I was alive, and UCF wasn’t scared (at ALL) of Texas, they won’t belive anything about USF other than they can beat the team that ruined the Moutaineers’ 2006 and sent Auburn on a downward spiral. 

For purposes of your season, I am going to assume that Mississippi State University will suddenly become an SEC juggernaut, so that after Slaton, White and Devine combine for 550 rushing yards against the MSU defense, which will be on the field for 45 minutes. thet will be part of the WVU argument for a top five ranking and a trip to the national title game.  WVU fans, I will be joining you in watching a team that even your defense should feel no fear of, a quarteback that your defensive backs can intercept at least twice. Then, feel free to point out beating up on MSU and the 2005 Sugar Bowl as signs of a massive power shift away from the traditional powerhouses, and toward West Virginia and the Big East.

(Chick moment: has anyone seen “Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style” on Bravo? He is just so utterly fabulous.  I’d love to go on one of those shows.)

But enough about the Big East. Admittedly, the Best Conference That Ever Was or Will Be isn’t having a great season through these first weeks (given that there are only six teams in the Top 25). Next week, LSU plays South Carolina, which is no gimme game (as Florida can attest); luckily, the game is in Tiger Stadium and Les Miles wasn’t in the conference when Spurrier coached (f*ck) Florida, so he doesn’t seem to be subject to that black magic juju. October 6 is against (f*ck) Florida, so we get to see if LSU deserves to be ranked second. If LSU can beat (f*ck)Florida and run the table (to face (f*ck) Florida again in the SEC Championship, the original and still the best), LSU has a date against someone in New Orleans on January 7. I can’t say who, as USC has shown a tendency to relax in one game they should win over the past few years. A one loss LSU team, as long as that loss is to the Evil Empire in the October 6 game (F*ck Florida), still has a better shot at the national title than an undefeated WVU, or any undefeated BE team, which now does not include Louisville.  LSU is at Kentucky, hosts Auburn, which would love to spoil the Tigers’ season (but not as much as they would love to beat Alabama), before heading to Alabama to face Coach (redacted), that traitorous bastard. (Now if you THINK you know SEC hype, WVU boosters, just wait until that game if Alabama manages to remain ranked through that period. I’m already sick of hearing about the return of the Crimson Tide.) LSU then has a couple of games against La Tech, and Ole Miss (and there are no easy SEC games, but Ole Miss is pretty bad), before finishing hosting the DMcFE at Tiger Stadium Thanksgiving weekend.  It’s a heck of a season coming up.

That’s all for now.

Apparently, the Patriots don’t need to cheat to win, although it seems to add the extra spicy touch for Belicheck.  Hail to you, people with Tom Brady on your fantasy teams. He’s thrown for 140 yards in a quarter.

*Discussions of the NFL are subject to my team not reverting back to traditional status.

The Magic Show

September 14, 2007

I’ve got tons to do and am feeling a bit lazy, so I won’t be doing a complete rundown of the Top 25 this week. We’ll just focus on a few big games, and ones of interest to me and my people.

First of all, let me say that WVU looked very good last night against the number 7th ranked (snicker) ranked defense in the NCAA.  Knowing the set of stairs those boys probably run during the season,  I can’t imagine that there is  better conditioned set of football players in college football(just as good, but not better). Maryland didn’t get blown out this year; they just got worn out.  The game (when I got home it was 21-7) was just close enough for a while to keep the hopes of the Terps fans up before they vanished in the cloud of dust Noel Devine created.  That game was the Mountaineers toughest out of conference contest,  and they came through well. They looked to be more up for that game than against Marshall.  They shouldn’t slip after this weeks poll.

And lets hear it for the smart, undersized and brave: Air Force (you remember them from last year, Rocky T*ts?) beat TCU (so much for that mid-major BCS bid) to start 3-0. I look forward to the Falcons beating Notre Dame.

Now, onto the magic show. That, my friends, is what I believe USC will be pulling this weekend against Nebraska. Watch the hopes of Nebraska becoming a player on the national stage vanish under an onslaught of points!  Watch Nebraska alumni magically get a stunned look on their face as they wonder why Bill Callahan got a contract extension! Watch the game become utterly boring by halftime! It’s not that I respect USC that much ( I am not a loudmouth like the future coach of Michigan, but I’ve made my feelings on the Pac-10 clear: not as hard as the SEC), but I think that Pete Carroll and the Trojans will feel the need to make a statement to the pollsters, LSU and Oklahoma after losing a significant number of first place votes after a bye week.  The unfortunate victim of that statement will be the Nebraska Cornhuskers, who would have probably lost against Wake Forest if Riley Skinner had not been broken.  I’m looking at USC to score 50.

Random point- it is not permissible for forty year old men to have temper tantrums unless they are managers taking on umpires, or football coaches losing it on a ref.  Other than that,  not good. It is also not permissible for a man to send his girlfriend to fight his battles, especially when the person she’s fighting the battle against is close to three times her size (and she doesn’t know of what she speaks). Those are unmanly acts.

 Tennessee at Florida: Fulmer’s on the clock. The games at the Swamp. Tennessee played a decent game against Southern Miss, but I am going to assume for purposes of this discussion that there is no one on Southern Miss as fast as the players on Florida. Tennessee simply did not have an answer for Cal’s speed. I would like for that to have changed in two weeks, but I don’t see that happening.  And did I mention the game’s at the Swamp?  I foresee ugliness. I have no idea of the score.

Arkansas at Alabama: the first real test of the (redacted) Era for the Crimson Tide. Has one season of that traitorous bastard coaching been enough to stop the Darren McFadden Experience?  Last season, McFadden was simply unstoppable. He had over 100 yards against both (f*ck) Florida and LSU (and I’m pretty sure it was closer to 200 in both cases, as he was the offense); LSU and that team from Gainesville were just better teams than Arkansas. Can the Alabama defense shut down both the DMcFE and Felix Jones, forcing whatever sucker is playing at quarterback to attempt a throw? Methinks not.  Arkansas in a close one, 17-13.

Louisville at Kentucky: 1500 yards total offense, 73-70 in 3 overtimes.  Heck, I could care less who wins this, although it should be a blast to watch. I’ll just be a homer and go with the Wildcats.

Boston College at Georgia Tech: the battle for (hee hee) ACC supremacy!! Boston College has looked pretty good these two weeks; Georgia Tech beating the Greatest Team in the History Of All Sports doesn’t say much at this point. I’ll go with Boston College.

Notre Dame at Michigan. Please Wolverines. I beg of you, grow a pair, and don’t let the Jimmy Clausen hype machine get restarted.  Is it wrong to watch a game simply to see how awful it will be? There’s too much good football at 3:30 to waste 3 1/2 hours on this garbage. Poor NBC.

The Ohio State University at Washington: GO HUSKIES!  They probably won’t win, but I can dream about an 0-3 Charlie Weis and a 3-0 Ty Willingham, can’t I? Should be good through the first 3 quarters.

The Daddy Brought Me this BMW Cup: Ole Miss at Vandy. Ole Miss is just awful, although the Rebels have one kid who will be drafted in the first or second round next year, tackle Michael Oher. Read his story in “The Blind Side,” by Michael Lewis.  This is winnable for both teams. I’ll go Vandy.

That’s today’s abridged version. Many teams have rest weeks, including the Tigers against Middle Tennessee State.

Please, Golden Gophers, don’t lose to an F_U team, lest I have to go smacking. Big, big smacking.

XOXO, the Lil’ One.

WE MUST IGNITE THIS HOUSE!!

September 11, 2007

Thursday Night’s Firestarter All Stars

 

It’s West Virginia at Maryland in the couch burning, mini-riot special of the year!  (7:45 on ESPN). Will Maryland have a reason to engage in pre-basketball season burning and car-overturning? How many mentions of the fact that Steve Slaton had his scholarship yanked by Maryland will there be? Will Ralph Fridgen beat the odds, and survive yet another game without a coronary? Can West Virginia play for two halves?

 

On paper, this should be a relatively easy game for WVU (much like last week’s game against Marshall) was supposed to have been). Last year’s Moutaineer victory was downright boring (believe me…I was there) and Maryland hasn’t beaten WVU since the 2004 Gator Bowl.  Maryland has been simply average since Ralph Fridgen’s first few seasons. The Terps haven’t beaten a top 5 team since 2004 (FSU). Maryland struggled last week against Florida International University, after opening against (I-AA) Villanova. They were only winning by six points in the fourth quarter against the F_U.  However, Maryland’s website/ propaganda proudly trumpets that their defense held Villanova to 187 total yards, and FIU to 163 yards, making them the number one defense in the ACC (I’m sorry, I just started giggling while typing that), and number seven in the country. (Hee hee hee). You would think this the Maryland defense is the 1986 Bears after reading this:

 

http://umterps.cstv.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/091007aaa.html

 

I think those defensive rankings will probably change after Thursday night. Maryland, despite the glowing propaganda written by the athletic department, doesn’t have the personnel to keep up with an actually motivated Mountaineers team.  The game is sold out, but Chevy Chase Bank Field at Byrd Stadium is not known as the hardest place to play (plus, it’s harder to throw batteries and mock player’s families in a football stadium than a basketball arena); the students can rather quickly be quieted down, and sent back out to Route 1 to drink, and perhaps burn some stuff, with a few early touchdowns. Coach Rodriguez should have them pumped up and ready to go for this night game.  I would think this is Steve Slaton’s favorite game of the year, being that he didn’t live up to Maryland’s high standards and all.

(I’m realizing that I may have a new target for my most cutting mockery: the ACC)

 

I’m going with West Virginia, 42-17. Maryland will try really hard to shock the nation, and Maryland will not succeed. The students will riot.