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Charleston, SC, United States
"Fear is a stranger to the ways of love. Identify with fear, and you will be a stranger to yourself." -ACIM

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Championship Saturday!

Go big or go home! It’s Championship Saturday and teams are either in or out of the BCS Championship Bowls while some teams will be off to the Nameyourcompany.com Bowl. It’s about reaching your season’s goals and going for the ultimate goal of a BCS Bowl win. Well, unless your Alabama and then you can take this week off and probably still get there.

I’m so happy that the Big-10 and PAC-12 are now finally playing Championship Games. Too bad the BigEast and Big-12 can’t but still get BCS bids. And, both of the new championship games were great despite the PAC-12 having to send UCLA to their game.

For those of you that are wondering, I finished this year at 93.8% accuracy on my college picks despite going 8-2 this week.

Toss a coin, grab a seat and let’s get on with this week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

The Big-10 Championship

#15 Wisconsin over #13 Michigan State 42-39
This was the best game of the weekend. Wow. If you didn’t get to see it, go watch it. The rematch was even better then the Hail Mary MSU win during the regular season. Wisconsin now will get to play Oregon in the Rose Bowl and that should be a really good game as well. I really think that is Michigan State hadn’t committed those two turnovers this game could have had a different outcome. Oh and that running into the kicker call at the end of the game was just heartbreaking for Sparty. The win was there, but so was the flag. But alas, the Badgers are now the Big-10 Champions for the second straight year. I’m really just happy it’s somebody other than Ohio State or Michigan.

The ACC Championship

#20 Clemson over #5 Virginia Tech 38-10
Who would have thought that the ACC would have put on such a good game. The final score doesn’t show just how close this game was. The score was tied at 10 in the 3rd before Clemson pulled away and will probably move on to the Orange Bowl. Clemson Head Coach Dabo Sweeney had some choice words for all those people “that quit on us” after the game. Can you really blame Clemson fans though? The team started off 8-0 and then lost two conference games and went into this game at 9-3. And, they’re Clemson fans, they know that traditionally their team sucks it up towards the end of the year. This is Clemson’s first conference championship in 20 years and it has to give that team a lot of satisfaction after falling apart late in the year. Whomever gets VT in the bowl game will have a tough test because that is a really good team too.

The PAC-12 Championship

#9 Oregon over UCLA 49-31
UCLA got in this game because USC was ineligible and surprisingly put on a good show pushing Oregon a bit. However, the Ducks were just waaaay too fast and UCLA just looked slow on both sides of the ball. The Bruins had a shot to make this a really good game in the 3rd, but stalled out and then LaMichael James closed it out. Oregon gets to go to the Rose Bowl after winning their 3rd straight PAC-12 title (the fist with an actual title game however) and UCLA gets to file an appeal with the NCAA to go to a bowl game with a losing record. Sad. Actually they were already granted approval by the NCAA, but really does it matter? They fired their coach last week, let him coach this game but he won’t coach the bowl game. Normally I hate FOX’s broadcasters, but the guy doing this game was awesome. He was so into it and very emotional on any big play. It was just fun to listen to him.

The SEC Championship

#1 LSU over #14 Georgia 42-10
Tale of two halves anyone? Wow. Georgia started out alright but LSU’s defense was just too good and Georgia’s special teams once again sucked it up. Three turnovers in the game by the Dawgs and all those dropped passes didn’t help out much either. Georgia left about 21 points off the board thanks to those dropped passes. I was not buying all that upset talk this week. Georgia hasn’t been able to run the ball for over a month now and if your hopes rely on Aaron Murray having a ‘huge’ day, then your hopes are lost. LSU on the other hand demonstrated how to win championships with great defense and a stable of guys who can run the ball. LSU is just too good and now will have about a month off before playing for the National Championship at 13-0. Will it be Bama? Will it be OKS? We’ll find out tonight. As a Georgia fan, I guess I’ve got to be happy with a 10 win season as long as the Dawgs can pull off a bowl win. The Outback Bowl?

Honorable Mentions:
#3 Oklahoma State wins the Big-12 over #10 Oklahoma 44-10
#17 Baylor winning the state over #22 Texas 48-24
#11 Kansas State winning Farmageddon over Iowa State 30-23

UPSET OF THE WEEK:

Conference USA Championship
#24 Southern Miss over #6 Houston 49-28
Oh No! Houston was just cruising along and looking for a BCS bid with an undefeated record. Guess Southern Miss had other plans. Some say Houston was distracted by all the talk surrounding their coach leaving next year. I don’t think that was the case with all that was on the line and with a chance to get into a BCS. Now both Southern Mississippi and Houston will finish with 11 wins (12 for Houston) but neither will go to a BCS game. Now while I think Conference USA has produced two very good teams this year, I just find it really funny (and sad) that neither will go to a BCS game while a crap BigEast team will. This will cost each school in the conference about $500,000 because of not getting to a BCS game. The Southern Miss coach may think his team deserves to go… they don’t.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:

The MAC Championship
Northern Illinois over Ohio 23-20
There were some awesome plays in this game and NIU had to come from 20 points down to win it, so this was an impressive Friday night High School football game. Wait what? Oh the MAC is a college conference? Anyway, the MAC Champs hopefully will get to go play a BigEast school in a bowl game and destroy them. That would just be awesome. A total of 13,052 people were in attendance for this game. So that leads me to believe that the MAC fans had better things to do on a Friday night than watch their championship game. Ohio had a 20-0 lead at half and then just forgot how to play defense. There were 7 total turnovers in this game and NIU ended up winning it on a last second field goal. So, a classic Pillow Fight Championship game.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:

#7 Boise State crushes New Mexico 45-0

Boise is 11-1, New Mexico is 1-11. So yeah this was a beat down before they even kicked off. Los Lobos managed only 197 total yards on the day and 8 first downs. By contrast, The Smurf’s QB Kellen Moore went 28/33 for 313 yards and 3 TDs by himself before he was pulled from the game in the second half. This was also Moore's 49th career win as a starting quarterback, the best in FBS history. He also has 137 career touchdown passes, second best behind Houston's QB C.K. While I’m not a huge fan of BSU, I do think they deserve an at large bid to a BCS Bowl. This is the third straight year that they’ll finish as a one loss team and I think it would be a lot more entertaining to see them than Houston. Which, shouldn’t be a problem now that Houston is also a one loss team. By the way, NM’s logo is waaaay more intimidating than their football team.

BIGGEST LOSER:







The BigEast!

Yeah it’s still the BigEast. West Virginia won A SHARE of the conference championship by beating South Florida. The other SHARE goes to Cincinnati who beat UConn. But, West Virginia will go to the conference’s automatic BCS Bowl since they will be the highest ranked team in the conference. (Right now they are 23rd). The Mountaineers will probably play Clemson in the Orange Bowl. And, Cincinnati will probably go play in some crap bowl.

Tune in next week when I talk about the Bowls and let you know which will be worth watching and which ones you can probably skip.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

RIVALRY Week!

Strap in College Football Fans, its RIVALRY WEEK!

Throw out the records, hang your season and all your hopes on the line, go out and play the guys that you hate the most and above all, feel free to commit a personal foul penalty from time to time just to spice things up. This week is all about the rivalries, trophies and pride.

Hey! The NBA is back. Oh, wait. I couldn’t care less. I was so hoping that their labor dispute would drag on so I could go a whole year without hearing about Kobe Bryant. Moving on…

Last week I said the BCS should look like this (1-10): LSU, Alabama, Arkansas, Virginia Tech, Stanford, Oklahoma State, Stanford, Oregon, Boise State, Oklahoma. (Guess nobody noticed that I had Stanford in there twice. I couldn’t make up my mind on them)

And instead it looked like this (1-10): LSU, Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma State, Virginia Tech, Stanford, Boise State, Houston, Oklahoma, Oregon.

Now, obviously the BCS computers don’t read this blog nor would they listen to me if they did, because I have NO love for Houston and I think Oregon is a way better team than either Oklahoma or Boise State. The computers LOVE Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. I don’t think VT is that good, but their record will keep them in the top 5. Anyway, this week and next week will tell us a lot about how these teams will end up come Bowl selection time.

How can you tell the female student who is a college football fan from the north from the female student who is a college football fan from the south?
The female student from the north is a physics major who understands Sylvia Plath.
The female student from the south is a Miss USA contestant and understands the west coast offense.

I’m altering the format this week and instead of ranking the games, I’ll just start at the top and work my way down the rankings. And, for those of you that care, going into the final week, my college picking accuracy is at 92.5% this year. Fail.

So with all that hate hanging in the air, let’s get on with this week’s games….

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

The Battle for the Golden Boot
#1 LSU over #3 Arkansas 41-17
This game was THE most important as far as the BCS went this weekend, but even more important to each of the schools. And, the score does not show just how close this game really was… for a half. It was all defense in the first quarter and felt like two boxers feeling each other out through the first round. But, Arkansas scored to start the second and was up 14-0 before LSU scored and then tied it on an awesome 92-yard punt return. The Tigers then scored again to take a 21-14 lead into the half. Arkansas got a field goal to start the 3rd and then… well then LSU just pulled away. However, the story here was LSU’s defense shutting the Razorbacks down. Arkansas managed 50 plays on offense (22 passing and 28 rushing) but for only 47 rushing yards (that’s a 1.7 yrd average) and 207 through the air.

LSU’s QB Jordan Jefferson had a good game and it looks like LSU is just going to cruse to a National Title this year. The Tigers are now 12-0 for the first time in the school’s history. They are the best team in college football AND they have awesome stuff like this…

The Iron Bowl
#2 Alabama over #24 Auburn 42-14
This is one of the greatest rivalries in all of sports. Every year is means something and love em’ or hate em’ the people of Alabama put on a great game. However, this one was never close.
The upset minded Tigers were just way over matched in this game and could do nothing to stop Alabama from making their case to meet LSU again in the National Championship Game. Really this was simple. Alabama played great defense and Trent Richardson went off for 203 yards on the ground but was amazingly held out of the end zone. Total yards? How about Alabama 407 to Auburn’s 157. Ouch. Guess this was a little pay back for last year.

The Battle for the Commonwealth (The Commonwealth Cup)
#4 Virginia Tech crushes Virginia 38-0
Now that’s a rivalry beat down type score. I’ve never thought this was one of the top rivalries but this one meant something to Tech since the win gives them the division championship and putting a beat down on your rival in their house is always nice especially since Virginia was riding a 4 game win streak in the series. This was also the first time that Virginia was shut out at home since 1984. How do you keep a Virginia football player out of your yard?
Put up a goalpost.

The Legends Trophy
#5 Stanford over #22 Notre Dame 28-14
Was I alone in NOT noticing that Notre Dame had moved back into the Top 25? They were 8-3 coming into this game, so, I guess that’s legit. Oh wait, no, it’s Notre Dame. This game was a tale of two halves since Stanford won the first 21-0 then Notre Dame tried to pull off a comeback wining the second 14-7. But the hot start by Luck and the Tree gives Stanford the Legends Trophy and a year’s worth of bragging rights. Ahhhh Notre Dame…. You SUCK!

The Civil War and the Platypus Trophy
#10 Oregon burns through Oregon State like Sherman through Atlanta 49-21
Great rivalry, but what a crappy trophy. Anyway, I love that in a rivalry you can put a beat down on and then pull your starters. Nothing says ‘I hate you, but you’re not even worth my time’ like pulling your starters. I get it. Oregon ‘rested’ their starters for next week’s championship game and knew they had this game won after they took a 28-7 lead into the half and a 42-7 lead early in the 4th. So, no need to run up the score and risk injury to your starters.

Battle of the Palmetto State
#12 South Carolina runs over #17 Clemson 34-13
It’s always a good day when the rednecks beat up on other rednecks. But it’s even better when the rednecks getting beaten are the rednecks from Clemson. This win is especially sweet for South Carolina since it gives them 10 wins for only the second time in school history. Even with that great season they won’t be playing for an SEC Championship because of the Dawgs having a slightly better season. "Historically, Clemson has owned this series," Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier said. "They don't own us now." Amen Coach.

There is nothing worse than hearing a Clemson fan drone on about how good their team is year in and year out while watching them play sub-par ACC schools and then suck it up at the end of the year. This loss drops the Tigers to 9-3 and sends them to face Virginia Tech for the ACC Championship on a losing streak. The loss will also probably drop them to near the bottom of the Top 25. So, Clemson fans… SHUT THE HELL UP!

Clean, Old-Fashioned HATE
#13 Georgia craps on #23 Georgia Tech 31-17
This is not only one of my favorite rivalries but my ALL TIME favorite name for a rivalry. Nothing says ‘I Hate You’ like having the word Hate in the name of your rivalry game. I just love that it’s clean unadulterated, no bones about it, I HATE YOU!

Oh how sweet this win is too. Not only did Georgia lock up a 10 win season, they did it against the fags from Georgia Tech who were picked to win this game by all the ‘experts.’ They thought Georgia had nothing to play for and that Tech would ‘want’ it more. Not so fast my friend! Georgia had everything to play for; that everything being whippin’ Tech’s ass.

“Oh the spread option is so awesome and we are soooo prolific in our scoring.” Yeah, no. Fuck you. Go back to your calculators and add up all those yards you racked up in the second half. It shouldn’t take you too long since you only got 79.

"I don't like losing to nobody, but when it's in-state, when it's your rival," Tech linebacker Julian Burnett said, his voice trailing off. "We're tired of being the little brothers in the state." Um… maybe Burnett should talk to his coach then and get him to design a better offense and not throw in the towel in the 4th quarter. Well except for when Paul Johnson showed his class by spiking the ball with :08 on the clock down 31-17 in order to get another play in for his backup QB who was in the game, “getting some practice in.” Tech then gets a false start penalty and the game ends with the aforementioned backup scrambling around and then getting tackled after about a 5 yard gain. Douche Bag. Also, it should be "losing to anybody" not "nobody." I guess he was just trying to prove that he sucks at more than football.

I hope Aaron Murray laughed himself to sleep last night after burning Tech and exposing their God Awful secondary in this game. I hope all those people on all those pre-game shows are having fun pulling their feet out of their mouths after saying Georgia’s defense was going to get “exposed” by Tech. I know the UGA fans that dominated a whole corner of Tech’s stadium and could be heard on TV chanting and cheering over the Tech fans loved this one.
Hey Tech fans… FUCK YOU!!! Hahahahahahahahahahaha!
The Game
#15 Michigan gets a win over Ohio State for the first time in eight years 40-34
Worst name ever. Just too pretentious and self-assuming. Well, that’s the Big-10 for you. What with the ‘Leaders’ and ‘Legends’ divisions, did you expect anything else?

Denard Robinson had one hell of a game in this one though. 5 TDs on the day (3 passing 2 rushing). His performance was just icing on the Ohio State shit-cake that is the 2011 season that stands at 6-6 and what I hope will be another Bowl loss to a SEC team. Wouldn’t it be awesome if a team like Vandy beat OSU in a bowl game? I would just fall over laughing and then laugh some more. Anyway, this was one of the better games on Saturday since a lot of the other rivalries were simply blowouts this year. Congrats to the maize and blue for snapping OSU’s win streak in the rivalry and completing a 10 win season.

I thought Urban Myer was “tired” and “wants to spend more time with his family away from the stress of the college game.” So why was he commentating on games and now is pretty much a lock for the Ohio State job next year? His wife and kids must suck.

What do you get if you drag a $100 bill through the ghetto?
An Ohio State recruit.

Heroes Game
#21 Nebraska over Iowa 20-7
Another crap name from a crap Big-10 rivalry. This game used to be referred to as the ‘Zeroes Game’ around my house during the Thanksgiving Holidays because we’d rather have taken a nap than watch it. But, Nebraska isn’t that bad these days and well, they proved it by rolling over Iowa in this year’s snoozer.

The Lone Star Showdown
#25 Texas broke the hearts at Texas A&M 27-25
The lone ‘star’ in this game was Texas QB Case McCoy. That’s right, he’s Colt’s younger brother. Anyway, he broke off a long run on the final drive after what had to have been the WORST call I’ve seen all year by an official that gave Texas 15 free yards for a “personal foul” that wasn’t even contact. After that it was tick and pick for field goal position and the game was over. A&M played really hard in this one and deserved to win what may be the last time we see this rivalry for a while. They’ve been playing it since 1894 and now with A&M moving to the SEC it could be going away. I hope not though because this is a great game every year.

And now I would like to present this year’s...


PILLOW FIGHT RIVALRY GAMES

The Backyard Brawl
West Virginia over Pittsburgh 21-20
They brought the pillows out into the backyard this year as the Big East continues to try and convince us of its relevancy. But, this was a ‘good’ game. Down 20-7 WV dominated the second half and pulled out a win at home thanks to 10 sacks including one on the final Pitt drive as time expired; oh, and some really bad Pitt special teams play. Will an 8-3 West Virginia team get the automatic BCS bid? If they beat S. Florida next week, they just may.

The Victory Bell
North Carolina over Duke 37-21
I guess since one team would technically have to win the game, Victory Bell is an appropriate name. Wow. It’s not basketball but I assume that rivalry transfers to football as well. Blah. Blah. Balh. It’s the ACC and it’s Duke and North Carolina. Need I say more?

The Sunshine Showdown
Florida State gets out sucked by Florida 21-7
In a game that used to mean something every year… this year it was just about pride. Florida just sucks this year. Period. John Brantley had a horrible game and then got knocked out of it in the second quarter. Florida committed 4 turnovers and managed only 7 points on a meaningless TD with about 5 minutes left in the game. Florida State on the other hand somehow won this game despite racking up only 95 total yards of offense and 7 first downs. Since 2000, no team has EVER won a game with fewer than 100 yards of offense. Wow.

These teams may not be putting quality out on the field, but one thing is for sure, they do still continue to put quality in the seats.
The Egg Bowl
Mississippi State scrambles Ole Miss and Huston Nutt; 31-3
Get it? Egg Bowl. Scramble? Never mind. This game is not even worth typing about. It’s just a classic rivalry and Nutt’s last game at Ole Miss. Nutt ends with a 24-26 overall record at Ole Miss, including a 10-22 mark in conference games. The Rebels have lost 14 straight SEC games. Not Good.

The Battle for the Barrel
Kentucky beats Tennessee for the first time since 1984; 10-7

A Kentucky fan and a Tennessee fan, fighting side-by-side, were captured during World War II and sentenced to die by firing squad. The enemy commander asked the Tennessee fan if
he had any last requests.
The Vol said, "I want to hear Rocky Top one last time."
The Kentucky fan was then asked if he had any last requests.
"Yes, shoot me first!"

Tennessee finishes the year at 5-7 and with their 6-7 finish last year, has ended seasons with consecutive losing records for the first time since 1910-11. I love this more than redneck Tennessee fans like camouflage, chewing tobacco and the color orange.

They should change this to ‘The Orange Pants Bowl’ since Derek Dooley continues to disgrace his last name by wearing those god awful pants week in a week out. If Tennessee wins, the UK coach has to wear orange pants for the next year’s game. If Kentucky wins, they get to strip Dooley straight out of his pants after the game and burn them on the 50 yard line. Dooley would then have to walk home in his tighty whities in shame.

TUNE IN NEXT WEEK FOR:
Part One of Championship Saturday and…
Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State in The Bedlam Series
Iowa State and Kansas State in Farmageddon!!!! (That’s really what it’s called. There is no way I could have made something that great up.)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Week 12: Upset Saturday!!!

And we’ve reached… UPSET SATURDAY!!!

Well well well… the BCS just got a whole lot more interesting. With Oklahoma State, Oklahoma and Oregon falling out, all the other one loss teams can start lining up and making a case for why they should be able to play in the National Championship Game.

Speaking of the BCS, if you want to read an interesting article on how they whole system maybe getting changed check out: http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7248953/bcs-proposes-only-handling-national-championship-game-sources-say

Next week is my favorite week of the year: Rivalry Week! So be sure to tune in because I’ll have all the trophy presentations and a few laughs as well. (A couple of rivalry games were played this week, so we’ll get to those in a minute). Also, this week I’m going to replace (for one week only) Biggest Loser with Biggest Winner.

But, before we get to this CRAZY week in college football, let me first be a fan for a second and congratulate my Georgia Bulldogs for ripping off 9 straight wins and clinching the SEC East title this weekend. It was an ugly win over KY but a win nonetheless. The Dawgs had to play with their third string RB, but it didn’t really matter since Georgia’s defense is, in a word, awesome!

Toss a coin, grab a seat and let’s get on with this week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

Unranked Iowa State UPSETS #2 Oklahoma State 37-31 in Double OT
I woke up on Saturday morning to watch the end of this game thinking I would just catch some stats and see what the games on Saturday were looking like. I turned on my ESPN player just in time to see Iowa State score to tie it at 24 and force OT. What? What? What? The first OT was normal enough but as OKS snapped the ball to start the second OT a linebacker flew in tipped the pass and got an INT. What? Iowa State then handed the ball off four times and from the 25, found themselves in the end zone. Game over, National Championship hopes over. Just an overall lack of defense and 5 turnovers killed the Cowboys on Friday night. Now next week’s OSU vs. OKS matchup isn’t quite as interesting. However, with all the one loss teams lining up for a shot at the National Championship game, Oklahoma State can stick a dagger in the heart’s of Oklahoma fans with a win. #22 Baylor over #5 Oklahoma 45-38
Bob Stoops got Greeeeedy! Oklahoma drove down and tied it up at 38 with 51 seconds left. They kicked off to Baylor who was content to let the clock run out and play in OT. Stoops saw the decent field position and took a timeout. Baylor thought, ‘well, ok, now that the clock has stopped, we’ve got some time here, so let’s see what we can do.’ Robert Griffin III (Baylor’s QB) is awesome and one of the better athletes in college football. 4 plays, 80 yards 43 seconds and a 34-yard TD pass put the Bears up 7. They kickoff and then recover the kick! Oklahoma stunned, out of any National Title shot and it was the first time OU has EVER lost to Baylor. EVER! By the way, Griffin went 21/34 for 479yds and 4TDs while also rushing for 72 yards in this game.

Unranked USC over #4 Oregon 38-35
If you have a legitimate claim at playing for the National Championship, why would you leave it up to your kicker to force OT in a game you should have won easily at home? Blame the coach here Ducks fans. USC was up 38-14 late in the 3rd before Oregon’s offense even woke up. It took a USC fumble inside the Oregon 10 for the Ducks to even have a shot. They drove down the field having all their timeouts and got to the 25 before stalling out. Now, they only used 1 of those timeouts and the play calling and execution were highly suspect. So, the kicker’s career long is 40. The attempt was about a 37-yard try. And, he hooked it wide right. Goodbye National Championship shot.

Honorable Mentions this week go to:

#8 Virginia Tech hangs on to beat Unranked North Carolina 24-21. Up 24-7 going into the 4th VT fell asleep and almost let this one get away from them.

#9 Stanford survives Cal 31-28 to win the Stanford Axe. Well, at least somebody won today. This was a close game and is HUGE for Stanford; especially this week.
UPSETS OF THE WEEK: (as if there weren’t enough already)

Unranked North Carolina State over #7 Clemson 37-13 and winner of The Textile Bowl Trophy
Oh Clemson. You were already going to the ACC Championship game, you had a chance to fly up the rankings with a win and all those teams ahead of you losing and then you got tripped up by the Wolfpack of NC State. Oops. This is the wrong time of the year for Clemson’s offense to go to sleep and their defensive holes to start showing up. Clemson turned the ball over 4 times and gave up 27 points in the 2nd quarter. This is the best the ACC has to offer? Wow.

Unranked UAB over #20 Southern Miss 34-31
I made a joke a few weeks ago about Southern Miss getting into the top 25 and was shocked when they climbed as high as 20 in the rankings this week. This game proves my point. Then 9-1 Southern Miss just got upset by then 2-8 UAB. Oh C-USA… who cares? Southern Miss is now 5-2 in conference play and will get either #11 Houston or Tulsa in the title game. I’m thinking I need my conspiracy hat here and promote the theory that Southern Miss was just a ‘little’ overrated in the hopes that Houston would get a ‘quality’ win the title game. Here’s hopping Tulsa upsets Houston at home on November 25th.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK: (By request)

Tennessee over Vanderbilt 27-21 in OT
Oh Vandy. I know you wanted to become bowl eligible over the hated Volunteers of Tennessee, but… you’re Vandy. If you were something other than Vandy maybe you wouldn’t blow leads in the 4th quarter and then throw pick-6 INTs in overtime. Vandy was favored by 1 1/2 points in the game, but Tennessee has now won 28 of the last 29 in the series. The Commodores had a chance to become bowl eligible against Tennessee and now must beat Wake Forest next week for a chance to go bowling for just the fifth time in history. The Vols needed the win over Vanderbilt coupled with a victory at Kentucky next week to keep from missing out on a bowl for the second time in the past four seasons. Even the SEC can provide us with a pillow fight from time to time.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:

#15 Michigan State over Indiana 55-3 and winner of The Old Brass Spittoon!
Love those Rivalry Trophies, but… Ouch. Indiana only has 1 win this year and that was all the way back in week 3 against South Carolina State. The Hoosiers managed just 236 total yards and threw two INTs. Michigan State was just toned up for this game and now has clinched the Big-10 “Legends” Division with Michigan beating Nebraska.

I wanted to put LSU here since they started taking knees inside the 10 with 5 minutes left in the game. 4th down? Knee. We’ll turn it over, who cares? Wow.

BIGGEST WINNER:

The SEC!!!
Yeah, so LSU, Alabama and Arkansas are all laughing their asses off right now. Next week will determine who will play (and probably beat) Georgia in the SEC Championship Game. However, whichever team doesn’t win will probably have a legitimate claim at still having a shot to play for the National Championship.

I’ve also got to put Virginia Tech and Stanford in this category as well. Here is how I think the
Top 10 should look this week:

1. LSU
2. Alabama
3. Arkansas
4. Virginia Tech
5. Stanford
6. Oklahoma State
7. Stanford
8. Oregon
9. Boise State
10. Oklahoma

Wow. Next week is going to be AWESOME!!!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Week 11/11/11/11...

I sadly have to start this post with what you’ve all heard about all week; that being Joe Paterno and the Penn State “Incident.” I have never had any love for Penn State or Paterno, however, I do feel a little sad that his amazing career as a football coach came to an end like this. But, having said that, if he did in fact have anything to do with the cover up of those horrific crimes against children, I hope that the government prosecutes him and anyone involved to the fullest extent of the law. Child molesters and those who would cover up their crimes in order to save themselves should be shot. While Paterno may have brought Penn State to national prominence over the last several decades, nothing (not his name, the Penn State brand, college football, sports in general) is worth sacrificing our basic human decency. The man who committed those crimes should be stung up in those same showers and those who covered up his crimes should be forced to watch and then banished from our society.

You can read a timeline of just how far all this goes back (well over 10 years) with Penn State and Jerry Sandusky here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/09/penn-state-scandal-timeline-jerry-sandusky_n_1084204.html?ref=mostpopular

With heartfelt sorrow for those children, let’s get on with what was otherwise a great week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

#7 Oregon over #4 Stanford 53-30
Ka-Boom! If last week the big game was in the SEC this week it was the PAC-12’s turn to show the nation their top two teams and dream boy do all QB Andrew Luck versus an Oregon team that refuses to go away. Oregon is on fire after losing to back-to-back SEC opponents (Auburn in last year’s title game and LSU to start the year). Since then, they have been calm on the surface but paddling like hell underneath. Stanford’s last loss before this game? Yeah, it was against Oregon. Just too many missed tackles and too many turnovers (5) for Stanford on Saturday. Luck was in the driver’s seat for the Heisman Trophy but last night it was the LaMichael James show as he ran for 146yds and 3 TDs. Oregon can now go on to the PAC-12 Championship and Stanford can wonder how close they could have been to playing for a National Championship had they just been able to beat Oregon.

Unranked TCU over #5 Boise State 36-35
Potatoes, Potatoes, Potatoes!!! What’s purple and eats flies that get in the BCS ointment? A TCU horned frog. Remember last year when Boise lost to Nevada because of a missed kick? Yeah, it happened again. This time however, it happened on their home blue turf which means that the Nation’s longest home winning streak (35 games) is now over. BSU also hadn’t lost a home conference game since 1998. Wow. This was a great game though. TCU scored to cut the lead to 36-35 with just over a minute to go and coach Garry Patterson made a huge call to go for two and the lead rather than the tie. They made it and went up by one giving Kellen Moore the ball and a chance for immortality. Didn’t happen though. While Moore got them down the field, the last-second 39-yard FG attempt went wide right and with it a chance for any major Bowl appearance for Boise State.

#14 Kansas State SURVIVES Texas A&M 53-50 in 4 OTs!!!
Kansas State needed a win after back-to-back losses. Texas A&M wanted to get bowl eligible off a conference opponent and make some kind of statement. But, down 14-0 K-State tied it up at 14 before halftime. Then down 31-21 with under 6 minutes to go they came charging back overcoming turnovers and poor defense to tie it up at 31 with about 2 minutes to go. And, as we all know, anything can happen in overtime. (Hence why I believe TCU went for two). The four OTs in this one went: TD/TD, FG/FG, TD/TD, FG/TD. K-State winner winner.

Honorable Mentions this week go to:
#9 Clemson surviving Wake Forrest 31-28. Wake had one hell of a 3rd quarter, but got shut down in the 4th.

#13 South Carolina surviving Florida 17-12. Man, Florida with all that speed just can’t get it together this year.

#15 Georgia (winners of 8 straight now) laying a WHOPPIN’ on #20 Auburn 45-7. It’s ‘The Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry’ and it rarely disappoints. Georgia has the inside track to the SEC title game and is only a win over Kentucky away from playing in Atlanta in December. GO DAWGS!
UPSETS OF THE WEEK:

Unranked Missouri over #16 Texas 17-5
5? Really Texas? 5? Missouri (who was 4-5 coming into this game) lost their starting running back and all you managed was a field goal and a safety? You only had 247 total yards? This was the first time since 2004 that Texas hadn’t scored a touchdown. I know they have some injury concerns, but… Wow.

#19 Nebraska over #12 Penn State 17-14
After Nebraska’s loss to North Western last week, I thought they would probably pack it in and not have enough to beat PSU on the road this week. However, with all that’s gone on at PSU, you could kind of see this one coming. It’s wasn’t like the PSU players could get on a ‘win one for the coach’ type ride and they just didn’t have anything really to offer Nebraska this week despite a pretty good effort in the second half.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:

Toledo over Western Michigan 66-63
Wait… How can two teams with a combined 11 wins be in a pillow fight? Well, one they only have a combined 11 wins and two they scored 129 points and didn’t play any defense! Oh, and three it’s a MAC game. A whopping 16,000 fans came out on a Tuesday to watch Toledo rebound after losing to N. Illinois last week 63-60. Toledo is now 8th in the nation in scoring but 96th in the nation in points allowed. I mean what is going on in the MAC? I get that nobody would watch their games on a Saturday so they move the marquee matchups to Tuesdays to get some TV time, but what their playing isn’t football. It’s like those old Madden games where you have 4 downs to get a touchdown or you turn the ball over. 1,439 total yards??? Really!? Just let the feathers fly in the ol’ MAC I guess.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:

#2 Oklahoma State over Texas Tech 66-6
Um, yeah. I started watching this game and then I stopped. It was one of the early contests so I thought I’d look in to see if Texas Tech could possibly pull another upset or to see just how good OSU is since they may just end up playing for the National Championship. I think I turned it off about a minute into the 2nd quarter when OSU was up 21-0, kicked off, TT fumbled the kickoff and OSU scored. It was ugly. That ball laid there for about 10 seconds with two Tech players looking for it before an OSU gunner ran up, picked it up and walked into the end zone to put the Cowboys up 28-0 with over 14 minutes still left to play in the second. It’s down to Oklahoma in two weeks to stop the Cowboy’s run, but I really don’t see that happening right now.

BIGGEST LOSER:

No clear candidate this week aside from the obvious that I spoke of in the introduction. So, we’ll just give it to: Texas, Stanford, Boise State, Toledo and Texas Tech’s defenses, and this guy…
Have a good week everybody!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Week 10; Will they play it again?

It was November 5th which means we finally got to see 1 vs. 2 on the field in a game we’ve all been waiting on for the past month. It wasn’t the game of the century but it was the best game so far this year, that’s for sure.

What is the deal with the Big 10? For the past 3 weeks the division titles have been there for the taking and it seems like nobody wants to step up and grab them. The ACC is a cluster of mid level teams and the Big East is well… we’ll get to them later.

Speaking of conferences, The SEC seems set to welcome both Texas A&M to the West and now Missouri to the East. (Announcement coming this week). I was hoping that the SEC would pick up a program a little better than Missouri, but whatever.

With a heartfelt welcome to the Top 25 for Southern Miss, let’s get on to this week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

#1 LSU over #2 Alabama 9-6 in OT
WOW! As a wise man said to me just yesterday, “Play some F-ing defense!” I picked Alabama in this one simply because they were playing at home. I thought this was going to be a low scoring and close game, but this was just great. I think had it not been for some key mistakes by Bama (also all those missed FG tries) the outcome would have been a lot different. But all credit to LSU, they went on the road, played a tough game and won. If you get a chance and didn’t see it, go look up the INT from LSU defensive back Eric Reid. He saved a touchdown that would have given Bama a lead and it was an awesome individual effort. Could this be the first time we see and all SEC National Championship Game with a rematch of this one? It’s too early to tell and there are still games to be played, but I can tell you that I would love to see this one played again. Now um… back to those kickers for Alabama. I hope that they and their families are safe this morning and no physical harm has come to them from the outraged Bama fans. A combined 2 for 6 in a game like this may just get you killed in Alabama. But, it’s a buyer’s market and I’m sure they can find nice housing in Louisiana.

#7 Arkansas over #9 South Carolina 44-28
Well well, Arkansas finally won a game that didn’t have to come down to the last play of the game. If the marquee matchup of the weekend featured defense, this one featured the offensive minded Razorbacks taking on a South Carolina team that is coming to the realization that without a Marcus Lattimore, they have no run game. (79 yards on the ground all day and only 207 total). They do still play good defense, but just not this week against a determined Arkansas team. If you like kick returns look up the 98-yard kickoff return in the 1st quarter by Arkansas. The guy ran untouched to the end zone and it was a big early momentum shifter. Really this game sets the table for the rest of the year in the SEC. South Carolina just opened the door for Georgia to win the East and Arkansas still has to play LSU and even though they’ve already lost to Alabama, they could still make a BCS bowl appearance and really make things interesting on November 25th.

#3 Oklahoma State over #14 Kansas State 52-45
Oklahoma State remains unbeaten and Kansas State (even with the loss) proved that they are a legit team this year; just not an elite team. It was a 27-24 game at half and K-State was actually playing some decent defense and hanging in there for most of the game. However, OKS’s passing game proved to be just too much for the Wildcats. The Cowboys have an inside track to the BCS Championship Game if they can get by a sneaky Texas Tech team next week on the road and then survive the Oklahoma game on December 3rd.

Honorable Mentions go to:

Unranked UCLA upsetting #19 Arizona State 29-28; again, missed kicks will kill you!

Northern Illinois over Toledo 63-60; 1,121 total yards in this game and a track meet broke out in the MAC.

UPSETS OF THE WEEK:

Let’s remember that last week it was Nebraska upsetting Michigan State and Ohio State taking out Wisconsin for a Big-10 upset week. This week it was…

Unranked Northwestern over #10 Nebraska 28-25
Really Nebraska? Northwestern? They were 3-5 coming into this game and 1-4 in the BigTen. Nebraska was there and had the division pretty much wrapped up. Northwestern had to go to their backup QB in the second half and their defense had been getting shredded all year long. So how is it that Nebraska couldn’t come up with a win here AT HOME!? Nebraska now becomes the third team in as many weeks to be upset at home by an unranked team: (Clemson/GT last week and Texas Tech/Oklahoma the week before).

Unranked Iowa over #15 Michigan 24-16
With the Nebraska loss, Michigan of all teams had a chance to take control of the “Legends” division of the Big-10. Oops! Michigan had FOUR shots at winning this game at the end and missed on all four chances despite the statistically awful Iowa Red Zone defense. Now really in this game Iowa’s Defense came up big (holding Michigan to half of their average rushing yards per game). There were some questionable calls in this game from the officials, but this game should have never been this close. But, Iowa has now won a few in a row against Michigan and may be the Wolverine’s kryptonite.

Hey college football fans; care to take a guess at which team is leading the Big-10 right now? Think of a team you haven’t heard about all year… yeah, it’s Penn State! Penn State is sitting at 8-1 overall and 5-0 in the conference. Now, they’ve cruised through an easy schedule, and they still have a shot at winning out with: Nebraska at home, AT Ohio State and AT Wisconsin to make this a very interesting end to the year. Now, I don’t think they will win out because it’s the Big-10 in 2011, but there’s a chance.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:

Idaho over San Jose State 32-29
A classic WAC rivalry game. Idaho came in 1-7 (0-4) facing a San Jose State team that was sporting a beefy 3-5 (2-2) record. SJSU took a 22-10 lead into the 4th quarter and then just let it all slip away. Oh the dreams of a WAC championship may never come true for ol’ Sparty, Well unless Michigan State ever moves to this conference. Idaho’s only other win this year came against North Dakota in what I guess was their “fluff” game this year. Anyway, yeah, these were two crappy teams throwing feathers at one another in another Pillow Fight out west.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:

#18 Georgia over New Mexico State 63-16
Score not indicative of the beating the Dawgs laid down this week. Georgia was without their top three running backs due to either injury or suspensions and had to go with two walk-ons in the backfield on Saturday. It didn’t matter. Georgia scored 42 points in the second quarter and then pulled the starters for the second half. To Georgia’s credit they did only attempt 10 passes in the second half and since it was homecoming, they let some of the alumni from the women’s soccer team come out on the field and play defense in the 4th quarter just so NMS could get a score or two. (Only one of those statements was intended to be a fact).

BIGGEST LOSER:

THE BIG EAST CONFERENCE!

What the hell? West Virginia lost to Syracuse earlier and then hung on to a Top 25 ranking before losing to Louisville this week 38-35. This should give us a poll this week without a Big East team in it. Now, there are no criteria for stripping a conference of its automatic BCS bid. In fact, even if the Big East finishes with no teams in the Top 25, they would still have a representative in one of the BCS Bowls. Why? Because they were given one at the formation of the BCS and there are no clear criteria for stripping a conference of its bid unless they fail to have at least 8 teams playing football. That’s it. In fact if the Big East were denied a bid this year, they could file a huge insider lawsuit against the BCS. So essentially this rule at the formation of the BCS a few years ago keeps the Big East from slipping into national irrelevancy (at least as far as bowls go). Now, contracts will be renewed at the end of the 2013 season and things could change after that, but until then, the Big East is here to stay.

Now, that last part is important because all the conferences should be done with all this realignment by the end of the 2013 season. Boise State should have chosen a conference by then and maybe just maybe Notre Dame will join up somewhere as well. (We all know about the Notre Dame clause in the BCS). So, while the current system will force us to watch a crappy Big East “Champion” in a BCS bowl for the next two seasons, things will surely change in two years. We could see conferences like the SEC, Big Ten, and PAC-10 getting 2 automatic spots and the bowls being expanded to include more non-automatic qualifiers. We can hope against hope that the BCS will establish a play off, but let’s not get started on that this week. I don’t have the energy.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Week 9; I'm feeling salty

How awesome was that World Series huh? Game six was just great from the 6th inning on and game seven was just tense the whole time. Congrats to St. Louis for winning their 11th World Series Title and I can’t wait for Spring Training just five months away. Ahhhh baseball, you’re my number one. But, we’re here for college football so let’s get to that.

So, I’ve got a little egg on my face this week and I don’t mind admitting that. I went 6-4 on my picks this week so that dropped me back down to 91.5% accuracy on the season. I’m ok with that, but not ok with some of the results this week as you will see. Hey college football teams in contention, if you win a big game, the season isn’t over. You still have to play the next week.

Glory Glory to ol’ Georgia! It’s always a good season when you beat Florida. I don’t care what the rankings are (Georgia back in the top 25 by the way). The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party is always an event and it’s ever so sweet when Georgia walks away with a win. And this 24-20 win, while not pretty, was beautiful.

Also, I need to congratulate QB Casey Keenum from Houston on breaking the all-time NCAA touchdown record for passing. Congrats Casey, you and your 139 TD passes can now go on to be a backup in the NFL just like the guys who occupy the two, three, four and five spots on that list; Graham Harrell, Colt Brennan, Kellen Moore, and Ty Detmer.

(I’ve had my Hater-Aid this morning fans, this could get ugly)

While we wait on the LSU vs. Alabama game next week, let’s get on with this week’s trick or treating…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

#6 Stanford SURVIVES Unranked USC (the one from California) 56-48 in 3 OTs.
Um, hey, Cardinal fans; that wasn’t supposed to be that close was it? Didn’t think so. I do have to give Stanford a lot of credit here though because this was billed as a trap game and USC was/is slightly underrated this year. They aren’t great by any means, but USC does have a decent team. This may just add to the legend of Andrew Luck though since he and the Cardinal took the ball with about 3 minutes to go in the 4th down by 7 and ended up tying the game with only 38 seconds to go just to get the game to overtime(s). Once you get a game like this to the 3rd overtime it’s anybody’s contest to win. I hated seeing the USC back fumble and the game end like that, but this was an instant classic and a great game all around. And, it doesn’t matter how many times I see it, that Stanford Tree is just creepy.

#9 Oklahoma over #8 Kansas State 58-17
How could this be a game of the week? Well there are two teams ranked in the top 10 and the score was 23-17 and competitive at the end of the first half. Now, nobody was drinking the purple kool-aid coming out of Kansas State this year, but after Oklahoma got beaten at home last week, the potential was there. And, it was there… for the first half. Then, OU just blew the doors off K-State. Also, I’m only giving this game half of a game of the week since only one half was actually good. The other half goes to…

Unranked Iowa State over #20 Texas Tech 41-7
Are you fucking kidding me Texas Tech? Really? Was that win over OU soooooo great that you didn’t even bother showing up this week? This was pathetic and you should be in my Biggest Loser section this week. What a piss poor performance and you should be ASHAMED of yourselves.

Honorable Mention goes to: #10 Arkansas surviving Vanderbilt 31-28. Can Arkansas not win a game normally anymore? This is three weeks in a row that their game has come down to the last second. This week it took Vandy missing a short field-goal to sew up the win for the Razorbacks.

UPSETS OF THE WEEK:

Where do I even begin with this? Does anyone want to win the Big 10 Conference? But first…

Unranked Georgia Tech over #8 Clemson 31-17
There is always one game every year that just pisses me off. Generally that game doesn’t come from the ACC since, who cares right? But all year I’ve been (to my disgust) high on Clemson. And, I guess nobody there watches film on Tech and therefore doesn’t know how to stop the option. What the hell? If you thought the Texas Tech performance was poor; look no farther than Clemson for this week’s biggest lie-down. Excuse me; I need to go puke…

#14 Nebraska over #11 Michigan State 24-3
Speaking of hangovers… Sparty must have thought they were going to cruise to the Championship Game after beating Wisconsin last week. Um, remember Nebraska? Yeah, they play defense there. Michigan State managed just 187 total yards this week and had more penalty yards (90) than passing yards (86).

Unranked Ohio State over #15 Wisconsin 33-29
Ugh. I don’t know what makes me more nauseous, Georgia Tech’s big win or Ohio State’s. Wisconsin had a chance to stay alive and still make a run and they got help from Nebraska in their cause. But, this was just sad. Two weeks in a row now they’ve been beaten on long passes at the end of the game. This one a 40 yard TD pass with only 20 seconds left.

Is it the play of these teams or the fact that I care about how the ACC and Big-10 are shaping up this year? Whatever it is, I’m going to need some antacids.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:

Liberty over Presbyterian 27-20 in OT
We’re back in the BigSouth this week for another epic pillow fight. I’ve got to admit I have no idea what’s going on with this conference, but Liberty is now 4-0 in the conference and 6-3 overall. I think they may get my pillow fight powerhouse award this year. Liberty led 13-10 with 1:32 left in regulation. Presbyterian drove 50 yards on seven plays, capped by a 22-yard field goal to send it into overtime with 5 seconds left. Liberty scored, Presbyterian didn’t. Game over. Anyone have a guess on Presbyterian’s mascot? Hmm…? Yeah, the Blue Hose. I couldn’t make this shit up. Wow.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:

See Iowa State over Texas Tech from earlier 41-7.

Stats?
Total Yards: ISU 512; TT 290
Rushing Yards: ISU 368; TT 99
Turnovers: ISU 1; TT 3
Time of Possession: ISU 40:09; TT 19:51

Quote of the week: "Pretty obvious we got beat on both sides of the ball, in the kicking game," (Texas Tech Head Coach) Tommy Tuberville said. "They came in ready to play and they took advantage of us not really focused, coaching or playing the first or second half. I take total blame for that. I saw a lot of it coming during the week."

Really Tommy? And you didn’t feel the need to stop practice on maybe Wednesday or Thursday to address that? Wow.

BIGGEST LOSER: (Fan Edition)

Florida!

This week’s Biggest Loser is going to the University of Florida. Because, well… Fuck em’!
Every Georgia fan knows from the first time they yell ‘GO DAWGS!’ that each and every season has just one goal: Beat Florida!

After that, it’s: To Hell with Georgia Tech, Screw Tennessee, Beat Auburn and please don’t lose to either Vandy or Kentucky. (Each fan has their own order, that’s just mine).

The game was one that would warm the heart of any Georgia fan who longs for the days when Georgia had a dominant defense. The Dawgs held Florida to -19 yards on the ground. -19! Love it. The offense didn’t do much, and the kicker sucked, but the defense was just great. Florida has now lost 4 straight and it looks like Mark Richt may have just saved his job. Georgia is now 6-2 on the year after starting out 0-2 and if they can get by Auburn in a few weeks, they may just get a chance to lose the SEC title game in December.

Enough about Georgia being awesome though, let’s focus on Florida’s 4 game skid. It’s the first 4 game losing streak for Florida since 1988. They are now 100th in the nation in passing yards per game, only 41st in the nation in rushing yards per game and 72nd in the nation in points per game at 26.9. In the last 4 weeks they’ve been outscored 120-47. Will Muschamp said, "Obviously, I didn't do a very good job of getting our team ready.” Obviously. You went 2-13 on 3rd downs, had 14 penalties for 106 yards and 2 lost fumbles. Oh, and did I mention that you’re team was held to -19 rushing yards? I did? Good!

Florida had one kick return for 99 yards as the sole highlight. They relied on the kicker who made field goals of 43 and 40 yards and other than that there was only the first quarter drive that gave them any points. Oh, and John Brantley, Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson may want to double team you and lick the sweat off your ass, but nobody else cares. You suck!

I don’t care that this game was more about Florida’s ineptitude. GO DAWGS!!!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

OU Who? and the BCS. It's Week 8

World Series World Series World Series! Sorry, but it’s better than any of the other Fall holidays. Forget Spring Break, it’s the Fall Classic that should get kids out of school. Well, at least me anyway. I’ve been downloading and watching as you’ll see later in this post.

But, you didn’t come here to hear me ramble about baseball you’re here for our beloved College Football. And what a week it was; oh, we’ve got games to discuss this week fans. The BCS is back and now we can debate who had what kind of win and how computers will score it. Say what you want, it’s the system we have.

But before I get on with that there are two other items that I need to let you in on. My College has, after 100+ years, decided to start a football program in D-III by 2013. Not only will this tarnish our undefeated record (never played, never lost) it will give the students something to do on Saturday. Everybody knows that Saturdays at Berry are for either going home, or spending all day catching up on all the work you didn’t do during the week. Not watching football on campus! But seriously, I am happy for them and I hope they do well. Maybe they can make an appearance in our Pillow Fight of the Week in a few years.

Second, I would be a bad person if I didn’t use some space here to say Happy Birthday to my most loyal reader, my Mom. Happy Birthday Mom!

Anyway, let’s flip a coin, choose sides and get on with this week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:

#16 Michigan State over #6 Wisconsin 37-31
What a game! Anytime two top 25 teams play and the game ends on a Hail Mary, it’s going to be the top game of the week. Awesome. We learned this past Sunday that the computers hate Wisconsin and we learned on Saturday that now it really doesn’t matter. The Badgers took a 14-0 lead early and it looked as if that offense was going to roll over MSU. But, the second quarter belonged to Sparta and Michigan State ended up taking a 23-14 lead into halftime thanks to a safety and a blocked punt in the end zone for a score. With a 1:26 left in the game Wisconsin finally tied it back up with two good drives. But, it all came down to a wing and prayer! I don’t think I would do it justice to describe it to you so you’ll have to go look it up on the highlights, but that was an awesome pass that bounced around and had to go to replay to be confirmed (or overturned as was the case here). They guy was called down short and I can’t say that I saw enough to overturn the call, but I could understand them doing so. If MSU can get by Nebraska next week they can cruise to the finish line and if it weren’t for that Notre Dame game we’d be talking about them fighting for a National Championship.

Texas Tech UPSETS #3 Oklahoma 41-38
The Sooners may have blown by the Red River Rivalry but they just got ROCKED by the Red Raiders! “OOOOOOO-klahoma where the winds come sweeping down the plains, and the football defeat, sure smells sweet, when standings come out on Sundaaaay!” (Sorry, that was uncalled for and my musical references will stop from here on out). But seriously, how did Oklahoma let this one sneak up on them? They looked awful in the first half! Texas Tech was up 24-7 at half and 31-7 early in the 3rd. However, from about half way through the 3rd to the end Oklahoma outscored TT 31-10. A tale of two halves football fans. The only problem is, Oklahoma can’t afford to play that way this or any other year when they’re sitting in the Top 5 and just waiting on November 5th for either LSU or Alabama to knock the other out of title contention. It was there! All you had to do was take it! Tommy Tuberville (TT coach) tried to give it to Oklahoma with some suspect calls in the second half, as is his style, but even he couldn’t save Oklahoma’s 39 game home winning streak.
I’m thinking this game is going to be with the Oklahoma program for a while and may even come back to bite them later in the year. (See: Next week at still undefeated K-State, Nov. 5 vs. Texas A&M and oh yeah, December 3rd AT Oklahoma State.)

Honorable Mentions go to:

#9 Arkansas clawing back to beat Ol’ Miss 29-24
Purdue pretty much knocking #23 Illinois out of this and any conversation with a 21-14 win.

UPSETS OF THE WEEK:
Unranked Syracuse over #15 West Virginia 49-23
Um, yeah the score is not indicative of the beat down that Syracuse put on West Virginia. Up 35-16 Syracuse called a halfback pass in before going into the end zone 2 plays later. The Orangemen’s defense put all kinds of pressure on the W. Virginia QB and never allowed them to run the ball. Syracuse may have made a huge step with this win and I’m by no means getting on the Orange bandwagon (even though they did win 8 games last year), but they played a physical game and made a statement this week. On the flip side of this, the West Virginia loss is really bad for the BigEast. The Mountaineers were the conference’s only top 25 team and their biggest game before this was a loss to LSU where they “played well.” And this conference STILL gets an automatic BCS bid.

Unranked Miami over #22 Georgia Tech 24-7
Can people please stop talking about the triple option like it’s something special? Two weeks in a row now GT has been stuffed by sub-par ACC opponents. If you want to stop the option, attack the backfield. Don’t let them get to or past the line of scrimmage. Play a 4-4 and call it a day. Right Miami and Virginia? Oh and bad news Tech fans, next week you’re going to get your asses kicked by Clemson then you get Virginia Tech. Guess it’s a good thing you racked up all those stats and got bowl eligible off of those studs at Western Carolina, Middle Tennessee, North Carolina, NC State, Kansas and Maryland. God I hate Georgia Tech!

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:

Northern Illinois (5-3) Survives Buffalo (2-6) 31-30
The MAC is back!… in our Pillow Fight of the Week. Up 31-10 going into the 4th quarter NIU must have popped the champagne a little early and forgotten that a football game is 4 quarters not 3. Dozens of people were in the stands to see this comeback and it would have been amazing if it weren’t for the Bulls kicker MISSING the extra point to tie it with 14 seconds left. There was no pressure, there was no wind, that guy just shanked it. Ouch.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:

#10 Oregon over Colorado 45-2
I just like that Colorado’s one highlight was tackling the punter in the end zone for a safety in the third quarter. The only story from this game is that Oregon has depth. They were without their starting QB and RB and still put up 29 points in the first quarter. Colorado on the other hand has so many injuries everywhere I think the male cheerleaders may be on the O-line next week. Oregon now sits at 6-1 (again another LSU victim) and has a chance, unlike Auburn, to make a run. However, they’ll need to get by Washington and Stanford (both games on the road) and get healthy again if they want to make a push for the BCS title.

BIGGEST LOSER: (Soap Box Edition)

Sorry but I’m going to have to step away from college football for a minute and give this week’s biggest loser award to Tim McCarver and the FOX broadcast of the World Series. Now, I get that you want to appeal to the lowest common denominator when you broadcast a sporting event so that everybody can “understand” what’s going on. You want to throw in some humor and human interest from time to time just to spice some stuff up and I get that baseball occasionally needs some spicing up while a pitcher stalks around the mound or we’re waiting on the next batter.
HOWEVER, people who watch the World Series fall into two categories: those who are fans of the teams that are in the Series or, like me, are just avid fans of baseball. Passive fans and those who either don’t like or don’t understand baseball don’t watch the World Series. So, FOX, understand this and tell Tim McCarver to shut the hell up! He has to be one of the worst color men of all times. I can put up with Joe Buck’s smug attitude but I cannot abide McCarver. This guy is the MASTER of the obvious and more likely than not is seconds away from saying something that is just plain dumb. McCarver is that little annoying kid you always just wanted to punch in the mouth every time he said something because it was either about as useful as tits on a nun, or just plain stupid.
FOX should be required to have a crawler at the bottom of the screen that reads “FOX broadcasting and its subsidiaries do not endorse or condone the words spoken by Tim McCarver and accept no responsibility for a loss of IQ suffered by those who listen to him.” Prime example: Game One: "It's a five letter word: S-T-R-I-K-E" –McCarver in the 5th. Dumbass!
Check out some of these nuggets of wisdom from Game Two:
- “There are more right handed pitchers in the game than left handers… so moms don’t let you babies grow up to be righties.” Really Tim? Not only is your cultural reference about 30 years behind your average viewer, you just made a factual statement that EVERY red-blooded American over the age of 6 knows. Where is the guy sitting at home asking his friend, ‘Really Bob? There are more right handed pitchers?’
- “When a batter is facing a pitcher for the first time, usually the advantage goes to the pitcher.” Again, who doesn’t know this? And, why he felt the need to over stress the word ‘usually’ I’ll never know.
There were a few more but I seriously think my brain just rejected them and now I can’t remember. But this guy has made a living of mispronouncing multi-syllable words and just saying things that are just plain stupid. Tim McCarever… SHUT UP!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Week 7 of College Pig Skin

Week seven is the first time since December 6, 1982, no Sunshine State team is among the AP rankings, marking the end of 472 straight polls where either Florida, Florida State or Miami -- and usually all three -- were on the list. I’ve gotta say… I’m good with that.

I’m not going to touch too much on this Mountain West and C-USA merger. The MWC is already adding Fresno State, Hawaii and Nevada next year while TCU is already planning on leaving. Boise State, Air Force and Central Florida could all be leaving to go to the BigEast. So, what we know is that we know nothing at this point. And, Boise State in the BigEast? Really? That just sounds like an oxymoron already. Just wait college football fans, this new “mega” conference will be screaming for a BCS bid to be automatic. Sorry, I ain’t buyin’ it boys. Your conference would be big alright; a big pile of B-level football.

It was a ‘Road Trip Weekend’ for most of the teams in the Top 10 and for me as well. I had to go back out to Muganlo this weekend for a visit since they’d been calling me for about two weeks. I figured if I got it out of the way this weekend, I could avoid being out there in the cold weather later. Also, I decided to finally break down and spend the cash to get the ESPN package for my computer. No more of this reading box scores and watching 1 minute highlights. I’m watching any and every game anytime I want. Oh yeah, time to step it up a notch.

Anyway, let’s flip a coin, choose sides and get on with this week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:
#21 Texas A&M over #20 Baylor 55-28
Before you freak out let me tell you why this was one of the better games of the weekend. Offense. Baylor put up 480 total yards with 430 of those coming through the air off the arm of Archie Griffin’s grandson. Not to be outdone, A&M put up 681 total yards. That’s right 681. Wow. They did all that with 415 yards of passing and 266 yards on the ground while going 10 for 13 on third downs conversions. The Aggies NEVER punted. I know it wasn’t exactly the marquee game from the Big-12 this weekend with Texas and Oklahoma State taking the spotlight, but this game was entertaining to be sure.

#23 Michigan State over #11 Michigan 28-14
Don’t call it an upset. Michigan State was hyped up for this and had Michigan’s offense all kinds of shutdown for most of the game. The interception return for a TD with under 5 minutes to go put the nail in the coffin and gave Sparty the win. Nobody can claim this was a trap game because, the Spartans have now won four straight against Michigan for the first time since 1959-62, equaling Michigan State's longest streak in the series. And, what the hell was up with those uniforms? What is this the year of fashion in college football? Which NCAA official’s wife has been watching too many of those awful design shows on TV?
Honorable Mentions this week go to: #6 Oklahoma State over #22 Texas 38-26 and #17 Kansas State over Texas Tech 41-34. What can I say? It was the week of the Big-12 I guess. A lot of close games and some nice matchups.

UPSETS OF THE WEEK:
Take your pick:

Virginia over #12 Georgia Tech 24-12 where Tech just got run over and their triple option just looked dead.
-or-
Ohio State over #16 Illinois 17-7 where Illinois proved they were way over ranked by just giving the game away to OSU with turnovers and a complete lack of passion.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:
Virginia Military Academy (VMI) over Charleston Southern 21-17
This week it’s the BigSouth’s turn once again to show some muscle and provide us with another classic pillow fight. The VMI Keydets (yeah that’s right) defended the home turf and kept CSU winless dropping them to an 0-6 start while picking up their very first win of the year to run their record up to 1-5. The one highlight from this game would have been the 22 yard punt block return for a TD by CSU who then added a two-point conversion. After that I’m pretty sure all the excitement was in the fans enjoying a nice fall afternoon and watching the leaves change because not much of anything resembling competitive football was happening on Saturday on the VMI campus.

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:
#4 Wisconsin over Indiana 59-7
Um yeah. News flash: Wisconsin has a great offense. And, you know its bad Hoosier fans when the Badger QB is out there throwing AND catching TD passes. Wisconsin didn’t even need to throw the ball (they did anyway) since on Saturday they racked up 332 rushing yards and just blew the doors off Indiana. Here’s a piece of advice for the Indiana coaching staff: You can’t attempt just 20 passes in a game where you’re playing one of the best offenses in the country. You especially can’t attempt just 20 passes when you complete only 8 of those throws. Actually 10 of them were completions but the other 2 were INTs. It was ugly out there.

Oh, and sorry Alabama fans you only won you’re game 52-7 so Wisconsin has you beat this week. Wait, what am I apologizing for? Alabama fans can't read this anyway.

BIGGEST LOSER:
UAB! Sorry Blazer fans but your 0-6 start has you as this week’s biggest loser. But wait! UAB is not alone at 0-6 in “major” college football… Florida Atlantic is also a paltry 0-6 to start the year. So that gives both Conference USA and The SunBelt an 0-6 team. The only reason I bring up FAU and UAB is because I’m secretly hopping that they both stay winless so that on Saturday November 26, 2011 when they meet in Florida for the last game of the year we will have the Pillow Fight to end all Pillow Fights. Come on guys, just 5 more losses to go. You’re already over half way there.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Week Six in The Land of College Football

Week six is behind us and I can’t say much about this week other than there were a lot of predictable outcomes and teams from the top 10 really just establishing who they are. I guess you could say this was a week where those in contention for the National Championship really had to prove they were for real and it appears that they all are. Trap games? I think not.

A few rivalries were on the slate but none of them will rate in our top games this week. (Sorry Red River fans, that was not even close. OU could have made that look a lot worse. Good thing Texas has that huge TV contract so everyone could see them get beat up this week). A couple of my favorite teams (this year anyway) also got wins this week including Arizona State and Kansas State, while Auburn once again showed their youthful inexperience. What did I tell you last week about Arkansas?


One NFL note, a sad day in football as Al Davis has died at the age of 82. Say what you want about how he ran his franchise but the man was a huge part of how the NFL got to where it is today and was a big part of the civil rights movement in California. He won't be missed by many of the higher ups in the NFL world; but should be.

Anyway, let’s flip a coin, choose sides and get on with this week…

GAMES OF THE WEEK:
#10 Arkansas over #15 Auburn 38-14
I know, I know. Not a great game but It had some great plays in it including a 92 yard run and a stellar performance by Arkansas QB Tyler Wilson who complete 19 straight passes at one point. How did Auburn go from unranked to #15 just by beating South Carolina last week? I was shocked when I saw this week’s rankings. Anyway, Arkansas proved they deserve to be the third best team in the SEC West behind Alabama and LSU and certainly a top 15 team in the nation. Defense looked good, offense looked great and we’ll just have to wait and see how they hold up through the rest of their SEC schedule.

#24 Texas A&M over Texas Tech 45-40
Offense! Offense! Don’t forget Tech came into this game undefeated at 4-0 and were playing at home. However, two blocked field goals by A&M (one returned for a TD in the 3rd quarter) made the difference on the day. Texas Tech as usual threw the ball all over the place and outgained A&M overall but the Aggies just played solid football and “it came down to the special teams.” Also, big thumbs down to the Tech fans for this little nugget: http://espn.go.com/dallas/ncf/story/_/id/7077711/texas-aggies-buses-vandalized-manure-texas-tech-red-raiders-logos

#14 Nebraska over Ohio State 34-27
I like to pick on both of these teams but this game warrants a spot in this week’s top games because of the comeback. OSU led 20-6 at halftime and 27-6 midway through the 3rd. This was Nebraska’s first Big-10 home game and their largest comeback in school history. Now, The Gay-Acorns did lose their starting QB in the 3rd and their offense did nothing after that, but you’ve got to think that a defense can hold a 21-point lead. Wow. Just another shining example of OSU sucking it up. Oh, and congrats Nebraska. (Yes this picture is what an actual Buckeye looks like… gay acorn).

Honorable Mention this week goes to: Georgia over Tennessee 20-12. The Dawgs got destroyed their last two trips to Knoxville but this week picked up a much needed win and got coach Richt his 100th win with the program. Georgia is now 3-1 in the SEC and tied with South Carolina for the East lead. There are still some tough matchups ahead, but with some amazing luck, they might just pull this off despite those two early losses.

UPSETS OF THE WEEK:
Unranked Wake Forrest over #23 Florida State 35-30
Again, this one was hard to call an upset (Wake came in at 3-1 to FSU’s 2-2) and FINALLY we’re going to be able to get FSU out of the top 25. From 5 to out in just a few short weeks. Awesome. Don’t look now Georgia Tech fans but Wake is 3-0 in the ACC and could be making their own appearance in the top 25 before too long. I know, they haven’t played anybody yet, but we’ll see. (They do host Virginia Tech next week and then travel to Clemson late in the year). Wake really just took the momentum in this game to start the second half and for the Seminoles it was too little too late and Wake sealed it when they recovered that onside kick attempt to end it.

PILLOW FIGHT OF THE WEEK:
Western Kentucky over Middle Tennessee 36-33 in DOUBLE OT!!!
EPIC PILLOW FIGHT!!! Western Kentucky earns their first win of the year to go to 1-4 while the loss drops MT to 1-4. I demand a rematch! The SunBelt Conference is just too competitive! Wow. Feathers were-a-flyin’ in this one. What can I say about this game? MT kicked a field goal in the second OT and W. Kentucky scored a touchdown on a RB pass from 7 yards out. The Hilltoppers’ (that’s W. Kentucky btw) running back Bobby Rainey also ran for 146 yards on the day and scored a TD early. Wow. The SunBelt just keeps putting up quality matchups for our Pillow Fights. Where is their network on the TV dial?

BEAT DOWN OF THE WEEK:
Every conference has their whipping boys and the SEC is no exception. So this week I’m calling it a tie between #2 Alabama’s 34-0 win over Vandy and #18 South Carolina’s 54-3 win over Kentucky.

Alabama’s QB A.J. MaCarron tossed 4TDs and went for 237yds on the day while their RB Trent Richardson put up his 5th straight 100 yard rushing performance with 107 yards and a TD.

South Carolina debuted their new offense and QB (see below) in a big bounce back win over Kentucky putting up huge yardage numbers (639). Somehow Marcus Lattimore was held out of the end zone but still managed 102 yards on the ground. Kentucky meanwhile had 96 total yards and committed SIX turnovers.

BIGGEST LOSER:
South Carolina QB Stephen Garcia (You know the guy who’s in his 5th year and has been suspended more times than the entire Miami defensive backfield).
This is either a picture of Garcia drunk again or right after another sack; I’m not sure.

Well well well; The Ol’ Ball Coach Steve Spurrier finally did it. I was wondering how long he would stick with that crapper of a QB after last week’s loss to Auburn which knocked them out of the top 10. This week Spurrier went back to what he’s good at and that’s putting up yards with an efficient QB. Granted it was Kentucky but Sophmore QB Conner Shaw really stepped up and basically ended the Stephen Garcia era at USC. Through 5 games this year Garcia put up these numbers: 61 of 118 (that’s a 51.7% completion rate) for 844 yards and 4TDs to go with his 9INTs which as of last week led all Div-I QBs in the INT category. Now, not to forget, he has rushed for 171yds on 34 attempts (5yd avg.) for 3TDs. But that’s Stephen Garcia. A 50/50 passer meaning he may complete every other throw and he makes a ton of bad decisions. In ONE GAME Conner Shaw went 26/39 for 311yds and 4TDS with 0INTs. He also rushed for 42yds. So, he has as many TDs in one game as Garcia has had in five and he didn’t turn the ball over. What more could that visor wearing mad scientist want? Stephen Garcia had better start packing his bags or pick up a clipboard because barring an injury this is Shaw’s team now. I like Spurrier’s quotes on the day: "It was just time to call some plays and see what happened," Spurrier said. "Gosh, we had over 600 yards,"

Thanks Coach! See ya’ next week!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Shoes, Guns and the French

So I’m going to be super lazy and bullet point a blog post. I’ll even go so far as to not even bother using actual bullet points and just use the dashes. Deal with it dear reader.

- Started making my own sweet tea at home in the apartment this past week. I’m having to make it in a liter and a half bottle so the first couple of batches were a little too sweet. Yeah, I drank it anyway, but I think I’ve got the mix down now.

- Got the Internet up and running at the house so that’s nice.

- Why do they call is breaking in shoes when it should be called breaking in feet? I’ve had this one pair of dress shoes for a few years now and have never really had occasion to use them outside of weddings and funerals and the rare occasion that I wore a suit. With starting the new job I figured, hey, I need to wear these shoes because I’ve been hauling them all over the world and now I have a job where I wear slacks and a tie most days. Well, my feet are none too happy about it. Two of my small toes on my left foot and the heel of my right are blistered and sore. I thought only women had to endure foot pain for the sake of fashion.

- Downloaded and watched a documentary called “African Cats” just because it was narrated by Samuel L. Jackson. I thought for sure it would be awesome. It was ok, but I knew it would fall well below expectations when I saw it was produced by Disney. I was so hopping to hear Samuel L. Jackson drop a few F-Bombs while describing a lion chase or something. Oh well.

- My Georgian residency card expired this past week and I learned they want about a hundred bucks for a new one. I don’t need one to be here legally, but it was nice cause all my info was in Georgian on there. I just got my school to translate all the information for me and then photo copied my front passport page to the back of it. All will be well.

- I was walking down the street the other day and saw this guy literally selling an AK-47 out of its case. He had these two other guys around him and they were talking about it. I couldn’t resist. I had to stop and at least try to listen in. Of course they were speaking Georgian and using vocabulary that was way above my level, but I did get a good look at the thing. I was still in my school clothes and I guess looking like I had money because the guy who was selling it turned to me and asked me if I was interested. I was not. I just wanted to get a good look at the thing. It looked awesome and I totally wanted to take it up in the hills and squeeze off about 200 rounds. I just thought that this was a funny example of how even though Georgia has come a long way; it still serves as a giant army surplus store.

- Got my hours reduced at school by two. No big deal. I was pretty loaded down and this at least gives me a break now in what was quickly becoming ‘kill me now’ Thursdays. The Ministry of Education decided that my second graders needed more Georgian Literature so instead of having them every day, I now only have them three days a week. I could see reducing their hours, but for Georgian Literature? I mean how many times can one really read Rustavelli in a lifetime?

- Started teaching private lessons this week. My first student was late for his first lesson. He’s Georgian, I expected that. Surprisingly though he wanted to talk about how Westerners are always on time and how Georgians can work on that aspect of their culture. I wanted to congratulate him on completing the first step ‘admitting you have a problem.’

- Got my first surprise day off from school this week. (There will be many more for random Georgian holidays and events.) French President Nicholas Sarkozy visited Tbilisi on Friday and since a lot of the streets would be blocked off, all of the Tbilisi schools decided to take the day off as to not have people showing up three hours late. Love when Georgia does stuff like this. Mind you, Sarkozy spent Friday morning in Azerbaijan and didn’t get to Georgia until the late afternoon to make an outdoor speech at Freedom Square and then take off the same night back to Paris. How this would have affected school traffic I’m not sure. But, I’m not complaining. See article here: http://www.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=24009 (Also: I’m glad he, “felt like” he was in Europe. Wish I could say the same thing.)

- I got a package from home in record time. Mom was the first to mail one off and it got from her post office to my hands in only 10 days!!! Amazing. I now have my winter coat and some awesome kitchen knives. Score!

- I’ve found my favorite brand of orange juice. It tastes the most like real OJ and says its 100% juice. But, and this goes back to my questions about Georgia and their customer service and pricing, the price of the OJ is kind of weird. For 1.5 liters of this OJ it costs you 4.75 Lari (not too bad) but for the 2 liter of the same brand it’s 6.75. What the hell is that? Two extra Lari for another half liter? No way!

- Just noticed that Monday is Columbus Day in America. As much as I like to make fun of random Georgian holidays, Columbus Day has to rank right up there on the list of most useless holidays. I for one think we should change it to Leif Ericson Day, (or [insert first Indian to cross the land bridge’s name here] Day) or just drop it all together. As if we don’t have enough holidays we stick this one in at the beginning of each October to show that we really don’t know who discovered America but that we’d all like a Monday off. And, by all, I mean those with government jobs because everybody else goes to work. I’d like to see us vote to strip the government of all of their holidays until they can prove that they actually do some work on the days when they are supposed to be there. (I’ll stop here because I feel a rant coming on).

Well, that was my week. I’ve got to run some random errands this weekend and then play our last softball game until spring. So sad that we’re preparing in advance for winter by shutting it down this early in October. But, it’ll start raining and getting cool here pretty soon as everyone rushes out to the fields to haul in their grapes.

Peace!