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  • 09/06/13--06:49: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 9/6/2013
  • DALE!!!!!

    We're bound for Miami this morning, land of good times, the occasional discovery severed goat heads on a public beach, and the Florida/Miami game, set for a scorching and totally nonsensical 12:00 kick in the nOrange Bowl. (Pro Player Landshark Sponsor's Fool's Gold Stadium, which is not half the grand dump the Orange Bowl was, and will never be.) So it's quick this a.m., and we'll see you in the air.

    TIENES PREGUNTAS? The State of the U's preview answers much of what you need to know about environs, while Alligator Army is all over the news/defense of the great swampy north stream. Oh, look! Message boards look so weird these days. The fun part about intrastate bickering amongst fans of Florida schools is pretending they all don't share the burden of living in America's greatest tax-dodgin' gun-choked dystopia, but we applaud the effort all around. We are prepared for good times in all directions, so say hello since we'll be wandering the parking lots tomorrow.

    YOU COULD READ OTHER MICHIGAN/ND PREVIEWS. But why on earth would you, you fierce little Figthings?

    YOLO! TAMU belonged in the SEC all along and proves it every day.

    THAT'S A WAY TO DO IT. The Pat Tillman Tunnel at ASU was fantastic.

    EAT BUTT, PETA. Not that you would, you horrendous vegans, but birds are very stupid and deserve our domination.

    WELL, HELL, IT WORKED. If he is anything, Pat Dye is a pragmatist.

    ETC: Terrifying Djoker is our new desktop background, and that is why we have vertigo now. The Jags make some quality previews (if not quality football.) Get it how you live it, stuntin-ass yaks.


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    1. Alabama.

    Dominated the bye week by margins unquantifiable. Spent the weekend on the couch guffawing openly at your team. They play an unheralded Texas A&M next week in a neglected conference game of little import or public notice.

    2. Ohio State.

    Defeated San Diego State 42-7 despite this week's edition of "Braxton Miller goes down injured yet again because he is an expensive piece of high-performance equipment that happens to drive against the flow of traffic once a week." Kenny Guiton is the best stunt double in the world.

    3. Oregon.

    59-10 over UVA, but it was closer than the scoreboard makes it look, because at one point in the game these teams were tied! (For exactly one minute and one second in the first quarter, the length of time it took the Ducks to score.)

    4. Clemson.

    Hit the "sim rest of game" button against FCS South Carolina State some time in the second quarter of a 52-13 win.

    5. Stanford.

    Forget the perfunctory, efficient 34-13 win over San Jose State to open the season. Stanford posted a stadium attendance record, presumably by tying presence to meeting slots with venture capitalists.

    6. South Carolina.

    Lost 41-30 when the Gamecocks' defense went supercritical, melted through the turf at Sanford Stadium, and drove coaches to open warfare against each other on the sidelines.

    Scarcoaches_medium

    Radiation madness is real.

    7. Texas A&M.

    A 65-28 scrimmage against Sam Houston State might have seen a bit unfair, but that's before I tell you that their team name is spelled B-e-a-r-K-a-t-s. They thus deserved every point of a blowout.

    8. Louisville.

    Eastern Kentucky served as a warmup to regular, non-directional Kentucky next week, but more importantly gave a helpful baseline by losing 44-7, thus establishing a measure by which it will be possible to gauge just how awful FIU will be in two weeks against the Cardinals. (FIU had 173 yards of total offense against UCF this week. They scored zero points. They will be worse than the East Kentucky Colonels, but science requires data.)

    9. LSU.

    Scored 56 points to UAB's 17 despite having a decided disadvantage in time of possession.

    Screen_shot_2013-09-08_at_11

    That's offensive efficiency and time manipulation only a Les Miles team can create. By Alabama law UAB games are now only 20 minutes and 10 seconds long, proving Alabama is capable of making at least one sane law that benefits its citizens.

    10. Florida State.

    Bye week, spent mostly pointing and laughing at Florida and Miami while wrapping Jameis Winston in layers of state-of-the-art bubble wrap.

    11. Georgia.

    In five of their last six games, Georgia has allowed over 200 yards rushing on the ground. They are now a really good Big 12 team playing in the SEC. (Clemson missed it by three yards with 197 rushing yards total.) Georgia is also 4-2 in that stretch against really good competition, because defense and everything else you know are lies.

    12. Florida.

    Lost 21-16 despite holding Miami to 1/11 on third downs, doubling up Miami on offensive yardage, and gaining 22 first downs to Miami's 10. Everyone has a gift.

    13. Oklahoma State.

    Gave up 500 yards of offense in a 56-35 win over the UTSA Roadrunners, who scored 32 more points than Mississippi State did against the Cowboys. #Pray4Clanga

    14. Notre Dame.

    Lost to obscure regional non-rival Michigan 41-30, and now moves on to real games against opponents they care about. THEY DON'T CARE, MICHIGAN. DO YOU HEAR HOW MUCH THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT YOU? DO YOU SEE ALL THESE NOTES THEY LEFT, AND THE MIXTAPE THEY MADE YOU BECAUSE THEY DON'T CARE? DO YOU SEE BRIAN KELLY REACHING OUT TO A PICTURE OF BRADY HOKE WHILE SINGING "STAY" ALONE IN HIS KARAOKE DUNGEON BENEATH THE STADIUM?

    15. Texas.

    550 yards rushing to BYU in a 40-21 debacle that will end Manny Diaz's career at Texas. A shattered ashtray on the floor of a burned mobile home. BYU lost last week to Virginia. A dead sparrow hitting the cold pavement of an abandoned city. Mack Brown wants to coach until 2020. These are all the same thing now in 2013, because Texas has turned into the first three stanzas of "The Waste Land," and sometimes it's easier to explain things with poetry.

    16. Oklahoma.

    Vintage Big Ten Night in Norman was a rousing success as Oklahoma manballed the Mountaineers into a 16-7 win for the Sooners.

    17. Michigan.

    Beat the University of Notre Dame 41-30, then played "The Chicken Dance" afterwards, because a Michigan Man now plays night games AND is alright with a modicum of well-calibrated public bitchiness.

    18. UCLA.

    Bye week spent laughing oh so very hard at USC. Plays Nebraska next week, so is already given 400 yards of house credit in rushing yards at the Pelini Fountains Casino of Gap-Control-Negligent Defense.

    19. Northwestern.

    Trounced Syracuse 48-27 and dropped 24 points in the second quarter alone on the Orangemen.

    20. Washington.

    Bye week also spent laughing at USC.

    21. Wisconsin.

    48-0 over Tennessee Tech, who only mustered 113 yards of offense on the day, but still had more passing yards than both of USC's quarterbacks combined.

    22. Nebraska.

    A 56-13 win over Southern Miss brings the Pelini family to 1-1 on the weekend, since brother Carl lost 31-13 to East Carolina on Thursday night. There's gonna be a lot of 1-1 weekends in the Pelini family, because FAU may be one of the worst teams in the FBS. It is only saved by its proximity to an even bigger wellspring of football sorrow, FIU.

    23. Baylor.

    Could have scored a hundred on Buffalo in a 70-13 win, and probably had to actively try not to do so with 781 yards of offense total and a 56-13 lead at the half. Bryce Petty, a very good quarterback Lane Kiffin passed on, averaged 21 yards a completion. He probably finished the evening laughing at USC, too.

    24. TCU.

    Was at one point tied 14-14 with Southeast Louisiana State University, but pulled ahead in the second half to win 38-17. Also solved their quarterback dilemma the old-fashioned way via random injury, this time in the form of a broken arm for poor Casey Pachall.

    25. USC.

    Lost to Washington State 10-7 despite the Cougars finishing the night with seven yards of rushing offense.

    More from SB Nation:

    Georgia, Miami, Michigan surge in AP poll

    Michigan, FSU make BCS games in new bowl projections

    Did that loss seal Mack Brown’s fate? | And how about Kiffin’s?

    Improving Eminem’s bizarre Notre Dame-Michigan visit

    The greatest FAT GUY TOUCHDOWN ever?

    Today’s college football news headlines

    The 36 best photos from college football's Week 2


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    ADL. Activities of daily living, also known as the set of skills people have to lose before they're placed in assisted living facilities. These are simple things: bathing, dressing, feeding, and other things which you find easy and some older people do not. When you can't do them anymore, that's when it's time to go to a home and spend your days eating soft foods and watching NCIS, our nation's most popular television show. (Shh. Don't tell anyone that episodic network television now makes its money solely off captive populations like prisoners and the elderly.)

    Bath strips. It sounds morbid, but it will happen, and you might as well recognize the signs in all phases of life. Football-wise, it starts when a team loses motor function completely in one portion of its body. A good example pulled from thin air might be the Texas Longhorns' complete inability to stop the run, and not against a particularly good offensive attack. BYU spent Week 1 losing to Virginia. They spent Week 2 skipping jauntily over Texas linebackers and watching Taysom Hill run unblocked to the foothills of the Wasatch Range. There is a moment when you realize the bathtub is no longer a relaxing oasis. It is instead a deathtrap waiting to kill anyone foolish enough to step casually into it.

    Mack Brown fired Manny Diaz after two games, then cautiously coated the bottom of the tub in traction-friendly bath strips.

    Canes. There are other signs of impending decline besides rancid defense. You can develop an offensive anemia so severe you lose to Washington State at home despite the Cougars only rushing for seven yards. Thirty-eight would be considered young for an assisted living facility, but if that facility is the American Athletic Conference, then the best chances for Lane Kiffin's survival would be a quick relegation to it for rehabilitation. Louisville can take their place in the Pac-12 for a year on loan, and then in 2014 happily move into America's new power conference, the almighty ACC. Fruit cups and a properly challenged Teddy Bridgewater for everyone.

    Diagnosis. This assumes you want to treat the patient. But if there's an inheritance to be had, or grudges to settle, you may want that person gone, and the will read as soon as possible. We are but two games into the season, but it is time to have a realistic discussion about Grandpa Mack, the fortunes of Texas football, and how any diagnosis of Brown will necessarily be confusing, only partially correct, and problematic. We should also talk about what you're getting in his will. (Nothing. Absolutely positively nothing.)

    Etiology. We've used this one before, but it means the cause, set of causes, or manner of causation of a disease or condition. Texas is not bad because of Manny Diaz, who in three years watched his reputation as one of coaching's bright young talents get incinerated in a cloud of surrendered yardage. Please note that Diaz should have been fired, and fired with insane prejudice. He should have perhaps been humanely packaged into a comfortable projectile-craft and fired into the next state for the job he did at Texas. He was awful because the definition of awful has to include BYU running like Nebraska '95 on your ass, or awful means nothing.

    Filigree. Pause the discussion for a moment to appreciate the detailing on the Fresno State offense. It's fundamentally sound, aggressive in design, and functional, sure. But like all fine works, it's the detailing that gets you: the engine note of a Ferrari, the impossible gloss of a Cezanne, and the moment when you call a hook-and-lateral for a fifth-year offensive lineman against Sacramento State.

    The greatest detail of that play is that they didn't even make the big man run too hard, because they love him and understand that being winded sucks.

    GERG. But back to Texas. Diaz should have been fired. Greg Robinson, the man promoted to replace Diaz, might have been very bad at his job recently, but consider this: if he is terrible at his job, nothing will have changed about the Texas defense, and Brown can legitimately claim he did not tolerate mediocrity in its present state. He will have made a new mediocrity and at least given fans some variety in their disappointment. (Also: Greg Robinson may entertain by shaking around stuffed animals on the sideline. This is real, has happened in the NFL and at Michigan, and will likely happen again.)

    The larger question for Texas is how it ever got this far. How did Diaz, who was great in six years of defensive coordinator work prior to his stint in Austin, fail to do the same work with a different staff made up of longtime Brown assistants? How does a team with so much talent fail to develop it? Particularly on the offensive side of the ball, where Texas has not had a player had one player drafted since 2010? And hasn't had an offensive lineman drafted since 2008?

    How does Texas, a school with every imaginable advantage in terms of money, recruiting pitches, and incoming talent, the only school big enough to command its own ESPN-built network, currently sit on a three-year average win/loss record below those of Baylor, Texas A&M, TCU, and Oklahoma?

    Hoary. As in "old and trite," like the argument that, yes, Brown recruited you as a safety. We're glad you know that joke by now, but you and everyone on the planet knows it, don't you? And suspect that though recruiting is an inaccurate science, and filled with never-beens and hardly-weres, that the long parade of talent that did not go to Texas, and in fact went elsewhere and prospered, is just the grace note on the long sonata playing Mack Brown into a golf-ridden retirement as a hilariously overpaid athletic director?

    Mack Brown may not have recruited you as a safety, but the cliches are starting to feel right: that he is loyal to a fault to longtime assistants, that the recruiting apparatus in Texas is a broken Nintendo DS compared to Alabama's thumping Cray XK6 supercomputer, and that Brown, always a CEO dependent on his assistants, may have lost his ability to groom new coaches. He may be stuck in the Tuberville Death Spiral of assistants' firings heralding his eventual demise.

    Intermittent Tuberville Death Spiral. That can be avoided, mind you. Mark Richt canned Willie Martinez, hired Todd Grantham, and nearly made the BCS in 2012. Nick Saban sheds assistants like scales and simply grows a new layer of protection, while Oregon has completely lost its head twice in the past decade with little ill effect on the body of the Ducks' football program. From 1968 to 1970 Bear Bryant hit a similar patch at Alabama. He staved off obsolescence by installing the Wishbone, then spent the rest of the decade selling opponent's blood on the black market for extra cash.

    Mack Brown has already changed his offense twice. He now has to overhaul his defense for the second time, but if this week proved anything, it is that Mack Brown is willing to do anything to survive. Parts will be replaced, entire wings of the Texas football mansion gutted and rebuilt, and he might live through this yet. They might beat Ole Miss by 40 points or lose by 20. You wouldn't be surprised by either, but Mack Brown probably wouldn't either, and that more than anything says a lot about where college football's most profligate old aristocrat stands in 2013.

    Jibes. USC fans have them.

    The image is not a new one, but that doesn't matter.

    You have to make a long case both for and against Brown, because for a decade he averaged over 10 wins at Texas. The case for Lane Kiffin is easier. His team, led by two four-star quarterbacks hw recruited, threw for fewer than 100 yards combined and lost at home to Washington State. Rephrased: the Cougars rushed for seven yards and beat USC in Los Angeles. Utah State and Chuckie Keeton could beat them on September 21st. My typing this without falling into a seizure of disbelief should be justification for firing by itself, and probably is admissible in a court of law in the state of California, but seriously UTAH STATE MIGHT BEAT USC, BECAUSE THEY ARE PROBABLY A BETTER FOOTBALL TEAM THAN WASHINGTON STATE. And at this moment, Washington State is a better football team than USC. That is the worst thing we have ever said about anyone, ever.

    Killcow. Definition: a bully.

    Football is hard, and for a few seconds I felt genuine pain for USC's quarterbacks on Saturday night because they were being bullied by Washington State's defense. Bullying is not funny even when it is done to USC. (Okay, it's funny when it happens to Kiffin, but not through the proxy of poor Cody Kessler here. He didn't deserve that.)

    Lackaday. An expression of regret, or the Florida offense on Saturday. Never claim Florida football doesn't offer variety: a straight fumble by Trey Burton, a botched route also by Burton resulting in an INT, another INT thrown into quadruple coverage in the redzone, and fumbles by Jeff Driskel and Matt Jones, both forced by the Miami defense. Miami didn't have to do much to win the game, and after a pair of early scores simply waited for the Gators to hand them the ball. And because the Florida offense delivers the ball to playmakers, that is precisely what they did. To playmakers. On the Miami defense.

    Malgré. In spite of, as in Miami won the game despite going 1/11 on third downs on offense. However, hold off on all announcements of the U being back, since no one is back until Jose3030 says they are. That said, they won a game ugly, and if they're capable of doing that against Florida they can do that to the entire ACC if they so choose.

    Narrative. The ACC has now bested two SEC teams in back-to-back weeks. Oh, but those were just two of the top teams in the conference, which also had Virginia die at the hands of Oregon this week. Yes, and VT lost badly to Alabama and UNC was run out of the game by South Carolina in week one, but if you ever want to compete with the SEC on a rhetorical level, we're going to have to show you how to cherry-pick in the name of conference solidarity. Follow Dabo. He'll show you how:

    As he leads a team, so does he lead a conference back to a competitive standard of shit-talking.

    Oak Hills Golf Club. Just north of Columbia, with 18 holes of fine turf to tear a long dotted-line of divots into, if you happen to be a football coach who just lost to the team he hates most in the world. Is it fun now that Georgia sort of doesn't care about defense and has compensated for the lack of safety features in the Richt 2013 by flooring the gas, taking every corner at a drift, calling onside kicks, and making long 4th down conversions? Yes, yes it is, thought not half as fun as imagining the trail of bent clubs and wrecked ball-washers Oak Hill is going to have to clean up when Spurrier rage-whacks his way through the course this week. Evil Richt is back, and everyone knows the most amusing part in any Western is when the priest pulls back the cassock to reveal a bandolier of ammo and two pistols on his belt.

    Propelled. As in grenades.

    Mmm, that delicious time of year when Steve Spurrier begins the rites for firing and/or getting his defensive coordinator sent elsewhere for employment. South Carolina's coaches fought on the sideline, and Jadeveon Clowney disappeared for stretches of the game, and despite all that, this is all precursor towards South Carolina somehow knotting up the SEC East in a three-way tie with Georgia and Florida. After the opening two weeks, it just feels too 2007 up in here not to believe this isn't going to totally happen.

    (In case of three-way SEC ties and unbroken tiebreakers, the SEC East's representative shall be determined by a series of coin tosses that allow, let's see ... Notre Dame to play in their place. You really should always read the rules all the way down to the bottom, every time.)

    Quoz. An odd person or thing. See: Cal, who had to rally to beat Portland State 37-30. If you care to replace the opponent names for the rest of the year, this will be the score for every Cal game this year, give or take 10 points in the upper direction, because all Cal does is drop bombs, then hand a few to the opponent to make it both sporting and terrifying. After two games, freshman Jared Goff leads the nation in total passing, because if you can drive at 16 and fight for your country at 18, Sonny Dykes thinks you're old enough can tear a bloody swath through the Pac-12's defenses just a few months out of high school.

    Reliquae. The remains of something, which might not be much after Baylor's done with it. The first eight drives against Buffalo: TD, TD, TD, TD, TD, TD, TD, [HALF], and TD. The Bears had nearly 800 yards of offense against Buffalo, which Florida International University will take four games to reach at its current pace. This entry mentions FIU's offense in the same breath with Baylor's. This entry should be burned for such blasphemy.

    Status: Georgia State, possessors of the worst schedule in college football, lost 42-14 to Chattanooga. At 0-2 they now head to face West Virginia, who only scored seven points in a loss to Oklahoma and who usually prefers to score about 500. In the absence of hope, we can only suggest courage, Georgia State, and perhaps a winding clock if both parties agree at the half to use one. (This is a serious suggestion. Ask for it.)

    Tumbleweed. That ball clearly wants to get the hell out of Wyoming. It is pining for its home in Idaho.

    We hope you got there someday, little buddy. Tumble on, homesick little pigskin of the west. Tumble on toward that indigo line called the horizon, where you'll find your way somewhere between hope and Pocatello.

    UTEP. Would someone on the Miners please tackle Kasey Carrier, the New Mexico running back who ran 41 times for 291 yards and four TDs? And then, if you're feeling sportsmanlike, please sedate him and place him in an ice tub under medical supervision for several days. It's hard to tell if Bob Davie gives him the ball because he loves him, or because he hates him and wants him to die from Exploding Knees.

    Versute. Crafty and wily, like Devin Gardner scrambling to keep drives alive for Michigan. Crafty can also mean "stupid like a fox," as in the instance when Gardner ran backward into the endzone to put himself in danger of getting a safety, but then safely opted for the more conventional INT for a Notre Dame touchdown.

    Saying a quarterback reminds you of Erik Ainge of Tennessee can be good and bad. It's good, because he's mobile, physically gifted, and often fearless. It's bad because sometimes that means Evil Erik Ainge, the one who threw interceptions when the team could least afford it. Gardner sort of reminds me of Ainge. Tommy Rees, however, might BE Erik Ainge, using a warm body as a spiritual proxy to replay his career in an alternate historical line.

    Wireless. As in microphones, like the ones referees forget to mute

    Xanthocyanopsy. A form of color blindness in which only blue and yellow can be seen. Noted sufferer: an overwhelmed and clearly disoriented Eminem, stunned by the maize and blue horde while stumbling through an interview with Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit Saturday night. (Or he was seeing this.)

    Yes? Oh, you say Bobby Petrino's team turned the ball over five times in a quarter on six snaps? Have you considered the offensive coordinator's job at the University of Florida, sir? YOU SOUND MORE THAN QUALIFIED.

    Zapp Brannigan Quote That Explains The Upcoming Alabama/Texas A&M Game No Matter What Happens.

    [a "herd" of Lucy Liu robots are destroying New New York]

    Captain Zapp Brannigan: That's a wave of destruction that's easy on the eyes!

    More from SB Nation:

    Georgia, Miami, Michigan surge in AP poll

    Texas replaces defensive coordinator with Greg Robinson

    Michigan, FSU make BCS games in new bowl projections

    Would coaches rather replace Mack Brown or Lane Kiffin?

    Improving Eminem’s bizarre Notre Dame-Michigan visit

    Today’s college football news headlines

    The 36 best photos from college football's Week 2


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  • 09/10/13--07:35: IN SERVICE OF WHAT
  • This is as quick a thing as we'll ever write on a media exposé of a college football program.

    The SI series on Oklahoma State allegedly paying their players is well-reported, and cinches together a pattern of incentives and black market compensation well. We repeat: it does all of that in great detail, and via multiple named sources. Please note that: not anonymous sources, but players who were there over a significant span of time, and who all made similar claims involving the same names.

    It seems to be well done, at least on the cash side for part one. Tomorrow, part two will cover academic fraud--the only angle we really care about--and then in parts three and four devolve into a bold description of how college students like to have sex and use drugs. This part will be great if you find sex and drugs shocking, and in particular if you enjoy shaming young women who like to have sex as much as young men during college.

    That the thing is procedurally well done is nice. That's great: journalism needs to be done well. What bothers us most is this question: in whose service is this, and to what end? The common answer is "the reader," or "the public trust," and that may very well be true here. Oklahoma State is a public university, and the citizens of the state need to know if the academic integrity of that state school is being compromised in the name of making tax-free money through the football program. That part is potentially legitimate, and necessary.

    The possibility that bothers us most: the repeated invocation of the NCAA rules in order to make the exchange of services for cash. If the general thrust of the investigation makes clear that the notion of amateurism is bankrupt in so many senses, and provides a case study on how even big programs bleed down scraps to feed the dogs who pull the sleds of college athletics, and that this is a black market created to evade the demands and regulations of the free market...then that would be journalism in service of something noble.

    But if this is another "oh my god, look at the filth of college athletics" fret-piece in the end, we're out. It is good to have detailed case studies on how the college football black market works. But to show the slums of the city without pointing out the burghers who keep it that way renders this pointless. The NCAA are the police, pointing to unenforceable and insane laws, and doing their job as badly as could be imagined. It's fun to hate them. It's harder, and less fun, to tie this all back to City Hall, and the schools themselves who create the favela in the first place, and skim profit off the top. Put that money into a player's hands, and it's a violation of charter. Put it into a University President's hands, however, and it's part of a system, a system which could easily find further validation in the form of Oklahoma State's story.

    If that's not anywhere in this--or doesn't lead to this--then this is work done in the service of a larger corruption.

    P.S. The sex angle is going to be horrible.

    P.P.S. So will the drugs part.

    P.P.P.S. Both of those are in service to corrupt rules, too.


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  • 09/10/13--12:33: BLATANT HOMERISM: MIAMI
  • The completely biased and very random season diary for the Florida Gators skipped Toledo, and started with Miami. It gets weird.

    1. There was a guy we'll call Uncle Fred. Uncle Fred had on a kangol and a flowy, loose, guayabera-style button down, and he was sitting in the parking lot of Traz-Powell Stadium leaning on the trunk of his car. Booker T. Washington High School and Miami Central were just getting underway inside. Uncle Fred might have been forty, or fifty, and he had a bottle of Remy-Martin open on the trunk. Uncle Fred was not going to join the security lines on either side of the stands. He would not follow us under the gap in the fence and into the stadium, where a lady with a golf cart hounded us out for sneaking into a high school football game. Uncle Fred was there to sit, drink, and chill out in the parking lot as teenagers wearing "DEEZ NUTZ" t-shirts passed by, eyeballing everyone around them with the pathological and barely concealed self-awareness of teenagers. Uncle Fred stood there, quietly emanating a low pulse of William DeVaughn even though no radio was playing, and if there was it certainly wouldn't be playing "Be Thankful For What You Got," which I swear I heard somewhere in the distance past the giant billowing cloud formations blooming across the sky like pillowy tumors.

    2. Booker T. Washington would win the game 28-17. I don't know because I got kicked out of the game, because as an adult man with children I tried to sneak into a sold-out high school football matchup. An unprecedented matchup of two top five teams in the same county, yes, and a game that was Miami/Florida in miniature, the same people who would feed into the machines at Florida, Florida State, and Miami. The difference would be that instead of walking around outside in a crowd of boosters, students, and townies at these three schools, you could come to Traz-Powell and do it in Dade County. More specifically, you could do it with Overtown, and with those who grew up up west of I-95: black high school kids in outfits coordinated from the neon shoes to the accent colors in the t-shirts, adult men with sculpted beards holding single tickets to scalp in one hand and red solo cups in the other, a few PTA ladies pushing Booker T. Washington scarves and gear from a table on the side.

    3. The Miami beard is the strangest creature: shaped, well-trimmed, and entirely incongruous with living in a blazing climate whose lows bottom out somewhere in the sixties on a brutal January evening.

    4. The game was sold out, and that was how we met Golf Cart Lady. The fence around Traz-Powell Stadium runs right down into the water of a canal running along one side of Miami-Dade Community College: if you want to sneak in, you either go over double barbed wire (nope) or you get wet, and possibly expose yourself to brain-eating amoebas in the name of getting into a high school football game. We opted for the hole in the fence, torn there by someone long ago for another long-gone football game or criminal expedition. Golf Cart Lady picked us up from two hundred yards away, so I tried to explain that we were media, and just trying to find the media entrance, which was decidedly not a hole in a fence ten feet from the evil putrid water of a South Florida drainage canal. She did not believe us, because Golf Cart Lady was not stupid.

    5. Okay, not all the way stupid, but Golf Cart Lady had an ounce of stupid in her. She told us to walk through the back of the stadium itself--which, to be fair, was the only way directly out to the parking lot, but she still routed us straight past no fewer than four most unguarded entrances into the stadium. I couldn't even think about darting into the stands and melting into the crowd: not only was I really white that day,* but I was wearing a loud red shirt that eliminated any chance of having a cover, and the only other white guy in the stands close to my age was Andy Staples. The black dude with us could have tried, and almost did, but Golf Cart Lady saw his shoulder twitch toward the gate and yelled out 'DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT!' We exited without protest. There are no laws in South Florida. We could have been thrown in Miami football jail for all we knew, and though it does not exist, you do not want to think about being in Miami football jail.

    *and most other days, actually

    6. The little we saw of the game through a fence. Later, we watched some of the Boston College vs. Wake Forest game. The high school game appeared to be of much higher quality.

    7. "Where's the Marlins batter's lounge?"

    "The what?"

    Sunlife Stadium is a horrendous venue: an orange, tiered block O slapped into Miami's attic and bracketed by vast parking lots. The stadium itself has gone from Joe Robbie to to Pro Player to Dolphins Stadium to Landshark, and the things in it have been named and renamed so many times no one really knows what anything is in it. Will Muschamp was supposed to have his press conference in the Marlins' Batter's Lounge, a thing no one knew by its name because the Marlins had long gone, and the branded name had died stillborn seconds after it came out of some exec's email.

    Fortunately Will Muschamp was easy to find. He was the one loping along flanked by the Florida athletic staff, the one who I nearly blocked from coming in the door until someone yanked me aside hissing "he's riiiiiiiiiiight there." His face was drawn, the color gone from his skin. I don't know if you can see this adequately on television, but coaches who lose football games really do look like they just watched someone die in the postgame. Muschamp blanched and changed just a shade paler with each mention of the word "turnovers," and repeated that over, and over again. It may have been restraint that kept him from exploding, but it seemed like something else: nausea, or at least a sickness coming in waves as he spoke. He didn't look broken. He looked like someone in the first uncertain stages of food poisoning, listening to his intestines gargle and recoil and hoping this would be over as soon as possible.

    8. The people inside SunLife Stadium, however, were fine. Miami-Dade has little resembling a middle-class, so when things are good, they're very, very good, and when things go badly people live in houses with holes in the wall and zero air-conditioning in subtropical climate. This dynamic applies to the Miami fanbase, as well. If the team is horrendous, you will get that same picture of the stadium tweeted across your timeline every week: a sea of orange seats, a few thousand fans dotted through the stadium, and a merciless sun frying everything stupid enough to show up for a little peace and quiet in the middle of a football season.

    9. This was not that crowd. This crowd was a high-tide, boom-economy Miami Hurricanes crowd, wearing Al Golden tie t-shirts, and pleasantly free of tradition. Some fanbases might have a problem with a mascot who once got arrested--like really, properly, and totally arrested--and at Miami it is a source of pride, because people forget exactly how close to the edge of America you really are. Fans eat whole pizzas in the stands.

    They are fine with piped-in music, and with dancing to that piped-in music as Sebastian douses them with a fire extinguisher. They are fine that there is no song unremixed, and with singing along with "Seven Nation Army" like this isn't a tired thing, because it is a hit, and was once a hit, and feels good to sing while your team is dragging its way to a win against a team that, in semiannual bursts, we hate. Play the hits, and we will sing along to them. Refuse, and we will go do something else in another location between the Broward County line and Islamorada.

    10. Did they play Pitbull? YOU'RE DAMN RIGHT THEY PLAYED PITBULL. They also played Tootsie Roll, and a good quarter of the stadium did go to the left, then to the right, and then to the front and to the back. Sliding occurred, as well. This man beheld it all. If you can hate this, we disagree fundamentally on what is good in life, and cannot continue this conversation.

    20130906_gav_bb1_196_medium

    We still do not understand what the arm sleeves are accomplishing here, but admire the ingenuity.

    11. Despair didn't really set in until the fourth quarter, because...you have to understand. Even from the pressbox, you could see Miami drop men into coverage. Like, at least 30 of them, and all watching Jeff Driskel's eyes, and drifting along with him like dogs watching a piece of chicken dangling from your hand. And you know despair when you see this, and see a close game, and know that the ball is going to be thrown, and thrown late and into an area of the field where four defenders are, and it happens. Florida could have come back after that. That's a possibility. But despair ignores evidence: the 400 yards offense, Driskel playing reasonably well in every other facet of the game besides "not turning the ball over when we could least afford it," the 22 first downs on the day. Despair is believing that with four turnovers, your team will belch another one like a shark throwing up a diver's boot. This is exactly what Florida did. Despair can be right.

    12. Stephen Morris scares the shit out of me. Fortunately, he scares the shit out of Miami fans, too, because on long play-action passes he is beauty incarnate, and on anything less is a rolling fireworks cart pushed into a cat shelter.  That can be fun, and we hope Miami fans realize this. He is high-risk, high-reward, and extremely dangerous. You just want him to be the kind of danger that works for you, i.e. the one who played the first quarter, and ran fakes and roll-outs with ease. You do not want him to be what he was the rest of the game--something that admittedly has a bit to do with Duke Johnson being bottled up by the Florida defense, who played well in a game where the Florida offense went up like a meth lab. This has happened before. It will probably happen again.

    13. Walking out of the stadium was the only time we heard a Miami fan call someone a homosexual, so that's improvement. For the record, it was Holly on the receiving end, and the guy had a chinstrap beard and a sleeveless t-shirt, less a person than a spirit-cliché summoned from the black marl of South Florida by a Hurricanes win.

    14. That night I woke up at five in the morning to make a flight. I was staying on Miami Beach in a tower of condos built with laundered money. There is no industry in South Florida, or at least not enough to support the gleaming barnacle of Miami stuck to Florida's hull. It's money from drugs, or from something else you don't want to know about, and the cheapest way to pass it through the membrane between the black market and legality is by building condos. You could possibly afford one of these, at least on a couple of professional's salaries. The houses across the water--dedicated to a name, a person, a spot on a tax roll and not a shadow corporation--those places on the channel start at the price of crime, and go up from there into a stratosphere where few can breathe.

    15. I watched Notre Dame and Michigan play after Will Muschamp made his bad-shrimp face, and after the quick hop onto county roads and into a media hotel built around gigantic banyan trees the size of missile silos. Michigan played "The Chicken Dance" when it was over, a direct kiss-my-ass in the direction of Notre Dame. I went to the last Texas/Texas A&M in 2011. That felt like the signing day for divorce papers, with neither side quite understanding the other. Michigan/Notre Dame seemed like the good kind of divorce, the kind that ends with both parties roaring off in new, unaffordable sports cars. It felt less like the end to a rivalry than a giddy, permanent separation. Rivalries end in different ways, but they sort of require you to, in some sense of the word, need the other party, to want them around for the game. Miami football, like Miami, is in its own universe, and much further away from the rest of the universe than you remember it being. Other people, other teams, other cities, only make cameos.

    16. The main character is always the city, and doesn't really consider the rest of the universe to be worth an equal spot in the credits. Their football team follows suit. You are a detail secondary to Miami and will be until the great flood, and then even possibly afterwards.

    17. That morning, I drove over the Tuttle Causeway, and past the elementary school and the Metro/PCS shops that might sell anything but cellphones, past the cranes from the port still lit up in the distance, and onto I-95, nearly empty in the early morning and populated only with weaving, bleary stragglers just leaving parties. In a hundred years, everything around me could be underwater. The second floor of a money-laundered condo tower would be the first. SunLife Stadium--or whatever it would be called by then--would be a coliseum prepped for naval gladiatorial combat. The University of Miami, kept low to the ground by Coral Gables zoning, would be mostly submerged. Miami--the rivalry, the city, the idea of the place--will be something you see from the shore, covered by the slow rise of the seas. For some reason, you'll miss it. Howard Schnellenberger, having grown gills, will swim with the tides, a manatee with a pipe paddling slowly through a patch of seagrass, trailing quiet puffs of smoke in the orange light of morning.


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    FLY YOU BEAUTIFUL TURKEY, FLY. We know this started out as mockery, but damn if it doesn't turn into something sad and beautiful after a few replays.

    That's like a live-action "Wish For Wings That Work" right there. (via MGoBlog)

    READ THE TAILGATE READ THE TAILGATE READ THE TAILGATE. There is no excuse just shut up and go read it there are Dr. Claw Bama uniforms and they are like the 35th most humorous thing in it NO SHUT UP AND JUST GO READ IT YOU HEEL THERE IS LITERALLY NOTHING ELSE TO DO TODAY BESIDES THE READING OF THE TAILGATE GO READ IT SHUT UP AND GO READ IT.

    OH YOU SAY ATHLETES GET FAKE CLASSES AND ARE SHUNTED THROUGH THE SYSTEM HMM. The second part of the SI series on Oklahoma State finds that tutors did work for students who still failed at a school with a crappy APR over the past five years. So if Oklahoma State has a pattern of cheating greater than the general population of students at large, um...it ain't working. Ooh, and more citing of dead guys as examples! WARM UP THE PULITZER WAGON, BOYS, and ponder this marvelous GIF as a counterpoint.

    YOU'VE GOT A CASE, SAYS MR. ZUCKERKORN.

    5wwjkrb_medium

    To NDNation's credit, the commenters below suggest that the proposal is the stupidest thing they have ever heard, which is saying a LOT.

    HI, HATERS. Oklahoma State happens to have their own site dedicated to responding solely to the SI story. (Haters.)

    IN LIGHTER BIG 12 NEWS. Ames is the new home of Initech.

    NO. You can think about the question, though. It's a fun exercise! Like Turkish Get-Ups, but where the weight crushes you in the end and breaks every bone in your body.

    THIS IS ABOUT RIGHT. Roll damn American tribes games.

    YOU HAVE TAJH BOYD'S APPROVAL, A&M. Saban heard that, and wrote it down just in case y'all meet in a bowl game.

    ETC: Anthony Bourdain can almost kick his wife's ass.

    Garth Feeney, East Lake High School.


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    Winston is talking about Nevada's Brock HekkingThis is a photo of Hekking's mullet, designed to look like Brian Bosworth's. Jameis Winston has not told one lie yet in press conferences, because that IS something you should be excited about, young man. Like, cheese balls excited if you're doing it right.


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    That's a great Georgia team that beat us, make no mistake. So talented you almost forget Mark Richt has a losing record against Ron Zook.

    That's a great moment for that program, beating a team with a starting quarterback with alopecia. Just a special moment.

    Saw Miami beat Florida the other day. Anything's possible through hard work and Valtrex.

    Pretty special that Al Golden still fits in his First Communion outfit.

    Florida really showed some flaws down there against Miami, but I betcha Muschamp will have 'em fixed in a week. And by fixed I mean castrated. Not that I disapprove of denyin' the world of Jeff Driskel, Junior, of course. The world needs more generosity.

    I know you got jokes about turnovers. That ain't the right pastry for Florida's offense, though. It's baklava, because it's flaky, falls apart, sucks, and infants could die if they try to eat it.

    Tennessee's 2-0? Well, I guess the ACC really is back.

    It would be irresponsible of me to suggest that Butch Jones is sacrificin' virgins to get wins in Knoxville, mostly because I already saw Derek Dooley on the Cowboys sideline on Sunday night.

    Sounds like things got kinda sloppy at Oklahoma State. Shady stuff happens all over, but you gotta be smart about it and hide the cash in the training table grub. Course, then you get Reidel Anthony poopin' Krugerrand.

    He's taking a lot of flack, but Mark Dantonio is one of the best coaches you can have leading your bumfight team.

    They say a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, but frankly I don't think it's polite to talk about what Mark Emmert does in the bedroom by his lonesome.

    Those allegations about Les Miles not taking academics seriously aren't true, and you can tell because Jordan Jefferson has a college degree.

    I'm not saying LSU's Harvard, mind you. Hand jobs are illegal in Baton Rouge, for one.

    I'll just say this about Chip Kelly getting a W in the NFL: Art Briles better make sure that Oakland contract ain't made out of people skin."

    Big A&M game this week, and I remember another young man who said and did things his elders didn't like much: Jesus. Jesus Montero, that is, a Tallahassee kid I tried to recruit in '99 who ended up changin' his name to Chris Rix.

    Y'all know you can bring a gun into church in the state of Georgia, but can't be on another man's back by law? Weird, but nothing else explains their recruiting and their run defense, though.

    Not worried about the Tide this week at all. I'm sure Alabama will handle Johnny Manziel just like they handled Stephen Garcia.

    Don't laugh. give it time and USF's gonna be something someday. That thing will be underwater, and probably a Dave and Buster's, but still.

    I'd say Dan Mullen kickin' the hell out of Alcorn State surprised me, but I'm pretty sure 'has beaten a dog to death' is a requirement to hold office in that state.

    Florida State needed an off week between Pitt and Nevada? Guess it's smart to pause between cupcakes lest you choke."

    Les Miles has never encouraged anyone to have sex, because that involves scoring on purpose. But I've heard Les Miles will let you hit something in the parking lot and still give you reps, though. Right, Jeremy Hill?

    Remember, Blake Bell - the fans aren't there to see you, they're there to see Mike Stoops coach the best unit on the team.

    That's what happens when you open the door for Mormons, Mack.

    The Longhorn Network got that Ole Miss/Texas whoopin' this weekend? If so, I guess Mack had this planned out right all along.

    Guess Urban Meyer shouldn't have canceled that gun buyback program.

    That game with Cal this weekend is dangerous, and not just because Ohio's been known to shoot hippies.

    You might think pulling off insurance fraud is hard, but then you see the FIU football program.

    The painful fact is we need diseases and such to keep the human population under control, and that's why Ron Turner keeps getting hired.

    I like Will Muschamp going for two. Eight points IS more than seven, and that's a considerable feat of countin' for a Georgia graduate.

    Always liked Western Michigan. Still sounds like cripplin' unemployment, but with a jaunty cowboy hat on.

    Wisconsin's got to go to Arizona State this week. They should be fine as long as they don't run any plays that look too Mexican.

    Syracuse might get its first win against Wagner which, hey, opera's got a helluva clock control game.

    Illinois' gotten a lot better at football since they took all those tollbooths off the field.

    Gonna be fun watchin' Ted Roof stroll back into Duke and point to all the places on the sideline where he stood and pretended he could read a playbook.

    Iowa-Iowa State is proof there really AREN'T enough channels on TV.

    I've never been to Purdue or had prostate cancer, but no one said you wanted to experience everything in life.

    Of course I'm not comparing those. We might one day find a cure for prostate cancer.

    The Governor's cup is a horse's skull filled with dip spit, and if you win it you get all the free fryer oil you can haul out of a KFC in the state of Kentucky. No, you don't wanna know what Bobby Petrino did with it, but it ain't safe for children or the weak to hear.

    Game wardens are useless and terrible shots with a tranq gun, and Bo Pelini being a free man is proof.

    Carl's the older brother and a good example of why that Chinese birth policy was a bad idea.

    I don't go as hard as I used to when I was young. I don't drink as much, and I take better care of myself by watching my diet, and not watching Auburn and Mississippi State play football.

    Bret Bielema fills out crossword puzzles with poop emojis in every square.

    Johnny Manziel's gonna turn that Bama game into a track meet, and by that I mean he's got a gun and a liter of someone else's piss.


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  • 09/12/13--08:20: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 9/12/2013
  • GOOD LORD, PART ONE. Yahoo's story about five players--including Alabama's DJ Fluker-- receiving money from three different agents is an important one because, unlike some people, Yahoo packaged it with a damning editorial by Dan Wetzel pointing out that all of this is bullshit, and that the rules of amateurism need to be scrapped. They were also there when Nick Saban threw his car into bitchth gear and quit a press conference after three questions, and the revelation that the store "Sticks 'n Stuff' is an important hub in the failed agent network.

    The other amusing part--in the bitterest way possible--is that Mississippi State had two players involved, because they are Mississippi State and always get the booty end of the stick in life. Oh, and someone gave Tyler Bray money, which is inherently funny because seriously what is Tyler Bray going to do with money that isn't amazing or dumb. (And which NFL team gave him a LOT of money? Oh, like you even had to look it up.)

    This is something to remember right now, too.

    GOOD LORD, PART TWO. The Reefer Madness section of the ongoing SI investigation into how utterly normal Oklahoma State is as a major football program continues by revealing that over a span of ten years, at least thirty players smoked marijuana, a stunning statement if you cannot do math and know nothing about drugs. There is also a mention of cocaine and steroids in the article, but WHATEVER, DEMON WEED IS ON THE LOOSE.

    The other extremely important pieces of information contained within:

    1. Mike Gundy is alleged to have made a joking joint-puffing gesture once in his life.
    2. A player said, re: meth, that "it was the country boys that really liked that shit."

    We await the sex portion of the series tomorrow where players and hostesses "were reported to have removed clothes and manipulated each other's genitals, sometimes for hours without supervision from football staffers."

    HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAAHHAHAHA.

    You've been waiting on a dream, they walk in and out, and they never stop, USC, Ohio State, and Penn State fans. You've had enough, and now you want your share.

    ONLY IF HE WEARS THE MASCOT HEAD THE WHOLE TIME. Seriously, the suit and the head in the passenger's seat the whole time or there's no deal.

    EASY CALL. Dan is on the "Cal will make it terrifying for Ohio State" for a while train, as he should be.

    EFFORT IS WORTH SOMETHING, AKRON. That's a great try, and sometimes that's what matters most.

    ZERO LINEMEN INCLUDED. Whatever, sizeist assholes at Seventeen magazine. Someday you'll be fat, so you might as well get used to it at a young age.


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    How many 1997 Ford Escorts could buy a Tyler Bray? FIND OUT IN THIS WEEK'S SHUTDOWN FULLCAST:

    (DOWNLOAD THE MP3 HERE)

    Topics covered include:

    • Whether Coach Saban knows he makes less money that Andy Reid
    • What SEC town income gradient is greatest? (I.e. Starkville to Nashville in purchasing power, etc)
    • Will Jason and I bring down the Georgia State program by ourselves, and also write the story of how we did it with a rain of dollar bills?
    • Was Gary Patterson hit by an asteroid?
    • Will Boston College or Utah State upset USC? Or both? NO REALLY, WILL BOTH OF THEM BEAT USC?

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  • 09/12/13--11:21: IT'S MONTAGE TIME (WHOOP!)
  • F1w_medium

    TRYING HAAAAAARD NOWWWWWW

    IT'S SO HAAAAARD NOWWWWWWW

    TRYING HARD NOWWWWWWWWWW

    Johnnymontage2_medium

    GETTING STRONG NOWWWWWWWW

    WON'T BE LONG NOWWWWWWWWW

    GETTING STRONG NOWWWWWWWW

    Johnnymontage3_medium

    GONNA FLY NOWWWWWWWWWWW

    FLYING HIGH NOWWWWWWWWWW

    GONNA FLYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

    FLYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY-----


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  • 09/13/13--07:47: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 9/13/2013
  • LUBBOCK CONTINUES TO BE STRANGER THAN IMAGINED AND ALSO FULL OF WILDLIFE

    It'll take no fewer than seven hundred words or so to describe what happened in Lubbock last night, but a summary follows: a fox/coyote-thing loose on the sidelines, Gary Patterson refusing to talk afterwards about Dada officiating that helped give Texas Tech the game, Kliff Kingsbury losing his QB and still calling a game-winning TD throw with a freshman quarterback in, and much hesitant cursing in the stands as a result of college football's first genuinely bizarre game of the year. (Even more bizarre than what follows, and that says a lot.)

    TULANE BEAT LOUISIANA TECH. Something that did not come as as surprise to some!

    NEXT TIME GO OIL-BASED. LIKE, REALLY OIL-BASED. You might even want to consider tattooing the school colors on next time just to prevent this horror from gracing a television screen ever again.

    HAWTNESS. Rodger took a look at Seventeen Magazine's ranking of OMG HOTTEST COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYERS and found that Seventeen should either consider never writing about football again, or should write about it all the time.

    HAWTNESS, POSTPONED. SI hasn't got it up yet, but the OMG SEXCCSSXXX section of their Oklahoma State investigation should drop sometime this morning.

    NEVER FORGET. Never, ever.

    ETC: Morrissey has an autobiography, and he doesn't. HNNNNNGGGHHHHHHH Jaguars/Raiders gets the preview it deserves. This is what space sounds like 12 billion miles from the earth.


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    The old magic's still there, Steve Spurrier. Note: that is still a better punt than some attempted this weekend.


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    There is video of the end to Wisconsin-Arizona State below. Watch it, and then read along as we go through what probably happened (and should have happened) at the bizarre end of Saturday's most baffling college football game.

    1. With 18 seconds left and no timeouts, Arizona State leads by a score of 32-30. Wisconsin has the ball on the Arizona State 13. You might think simply running the clock down, spiking the ball on 1st down, and kicking for the 33-32 win on 2nd down would be the right call. You might be right, but that is not what Wisconsin is going to do here. Sort of. We think.

    2. Badgers QB Joel Stave snaps the ball with 18 seconds on the clock. He runs around gamely, and then takes a knee after running into one of his blockers. Wait! That's not what happened in the video! No, not from the ESPN angle. This is what the play looked like from the perspective of the Wisconsin endzone.

    3. The referee clearly signals "down." The play is whistled dead. Stave places the ball at the line of scrimmage for the officials to spot it, and then also appears to make something that looks a lot like a time out signal. This would be a time out that Wisconsin does not have. This really doesn't matter a lot save for the additional confusion it may have injected into the mounting chaos.

    4. An Arizona State player -- either as confused as the TV viewer, or simply trying to delay the inevitable game-winning kick for Wisconsin -- flops on the ball like it is live. The clock is running. Wisconsin must either a.) spike the ball, b.) rush their field goal unit onto the field in something like eight seconds, c.) wait for the officials to pull a large man off the ball and assess a penalty and make subsequent clock adjustments, or d.) sit there and watch the clock run out while the officials reset the ball too late, and end the game without calling a penalty.

    5. Wisconsin chose d.) sit there and watch the game end. They had no choice: despite the referee obviously telling a Wisconsin player that Stave was down, the umpire standing over the ball makes no call against the Arizona State defender for laying on a dead ball, and after finally getting the defender off the ball tells Wisconsin to hold while the clock runs down.

    6. So what should have happened? Arizona State probably should have been penalized for delay of game for flopping on the dead ball after the referee signalled down. (Watch it again: the play IS blown dead.)  The Sun Devil defender lays on the ball for a good seven or eight precious seconds, and by the time the umpire sorts things out it's too late. Wisconsin gets something like ten seconds on the clock to set up a spike, and then sets up with a few seconds left to attempt the winning kick.

    7. That is something that probably should have happened. This is also something that should have happened: Wisconsin should have never let it get to this, and should have played a faster endgame. Stave was told to run around and down the ball in the middle of the field. The odd, half-assed kneeldown starts the whole sequence, and then puts the rest of the game in the hands of the clock, the officials, and defenders all too happy to lay on a ball and dare an official to do something. The officials killed Wisconsin's chances of winning the game, but the Badgers handed them the gun with a smile. (Arizona State may be charged as an accessory.)

    8. The officials did do something. When the clock ran out, they disappeared in a hurry.

    Update:Big Ten admits officials botched end of game

    More from SB Nation:

    All our coverage from Week 3’s Saturday

    Trying to explain that insane Wisconsin-Arizona State ending

    The full story of Alabama-Texas A&M

    Yahoo! Sports shows evidence of agent money in the SEC

    Would coaches rather replace Mack Brown or Lane Kiffin?

    Today’s college football news headlines


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    1. Alabama.

    Allowed 628 yards of offense and 42 points to Texas A&M, but scored 49 in response and relied on the arm of AJ McCarron to throw for 334 yards and 4 touchdowns. All told: 62 first downs between the two teams, a back-and-forth free fire zone of a football game, and a breathless run to the finish line finishing with an Alabama passing TD. In other words? CLASSIC ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE FOOTBALL.

    2. Ohio State.

    Won a rollicking 52-34 home game against Cal even without the ailing Braxton Miller.

    3. Clemson.

    Bye week, most likely spent trying to unglue a plush tiger's hands from an orange door.

    4. Oregon.

    Beat Tennessee 59-14, handing the Volunteers their worst loss since 1905. Elated Oregon students chanted "We want Bama!" at the end, which seems funny until you remember that Tennessee has to play Alabama in October, where they could suffer the next-worst loss in the history of the program. Stop making us sad about clusters of historical beatdowns, elated Oregon students.

    5. Stanford.

    A polite 34-20 win and scrimmage in honor of our country's fighting men and women. You know what David Shaw has shown on tape for opponents to study? As much as you need to beat San Jose State and Army, or exactly nothing.

    6. Texas A&M.

    Lost 49-42 to America's new kings of fast-break offense, the Alabama Crimson Tide. Mike Evans, Aggies wide receiver, had 279 yards receiving against the best defensive team of this era. The Aggies play SMU next week, a team that barely beat Montana State 31-30. The number of points the Aggies can score against mortals is limited only by the duration of their sustained anger, is what I'm basically trying to say here.

    7. Louisville.

    A functional, 27-13 win over Kentucky looks a lot better when you remember that the Cardinals got off to a sluggish start, and also held Kentucky to zero third-down conversions. The game kicked off at noon and no, we don't care what you say, no one has ever played a well-wrought game of college football at noon. College students are barely awake at noon, much less ready to hit each other and catch footballs capably.

    8. LSU.

    Demolished Kent State 45-13, and did away with their MAC opponent handily. Unlike some people in the top 25.

    9. Georgia.

    A bye week that you totally, absolutely need before facing the formidable North Texas Mean Green in Week 4.

    10. Florida State.

    In the second quarter, Nevada actually led this game 7-3 after getting good field position off a Jameis Winston interception. That's something you can never take away from Nevada, and so are the 59 points the Seminoles dropped on them after that brief moment of hope in a 62-7 blowout.

    11. Michigan.

    DOMINATED AKRON IN A terrifying, ramshackle, and completely unanticipated 28-24 VICTORY.

    12. Oklahoma State.

    Hammered Lamar 59-3, but that's what Lamar gets for owing Mike Gundy money.

    13. South Carolina.

    Jadeveon Clowney didn't even throw a single touchdown in a 35-25 defeat of Vanderbilt.

    14. Oklahoma.

    51-20 over Tulsa thanks to Blake Bell's exceptional work in his first start at quarterback. Bob Stoops didn't formerly base his QB depth chart on "ability to flatten a convenience store with bare hands," but life's a journey, not a destination, and sometimes that journey means giving the ball to the hairless mastodon in shoulder pads. (P.S. That's Blake Bell, because he is huge, and probably files down his tusks to prevent them from sticking out of his helmet.)

    15. Miami.

    Spent the bye week laundering Al Golden's impossibly huge shirts.

    16. UCLA.

    Recovered from a 21-3 deficit to defeat Nebraska 41-21 in Lincoln. There is a requisite and easy point to be made about Nebraska's defense dissolving yet again, but the more intriguing story here is Nebraska's volatile offense being held to zero points in the second half by the Bruins' defense.

    17. Northwestern.

    P.J. Fleck's Western Michigan team might have lost the war in a 38-17 loss to the Wildcats. You can never defeat rhythm, however.

    18. Florida.

    Bye week, probably spent dropping something priceless and uninsured down a flight of concrete stairs.

    19. Washington.

    Look at you, Illinois, staying within 10 points of Washington, 34-24. That sounded less sincere than it was. Here, try this, because we'll take sincere statements about Illinois football for $400, Alex.

    20. Wisconsin.

    Lost the most bizarre game of the weekend 32-30 to Arizona State. (This does not include Texas Tech-TCU. Lubbock is an unfair advantage in any contest of the bizarre.)

    21. Notre Dame.

    Tommy Rees played brilliantly in a 31-24 road win over a real, live, competitive Purdue football team. Smile, Notre Dame fan, for there is no kicker to this statement, nor any qualification of Rees' performance. He was good, and for this week you may exhale.

    22. Baylor.

    Bye week spent calibrating optimal levels of TURNT. Findings: optimal turnt levels are "all the way up."

    23. Nebraska.

    Lost badly at home to 41-21, but, um ... IT WASN'T A NEAR-LOSS TO AKRON? Yeah!

    24. TCU.

    Hosed by deranged officiating in 20-10 loss to Texas Tech in Lubbock.

    25. Ole Miss.

    Only ran for 272 yards against the Texas defense in a 44-23 win over the Longhorns, so is clearly half the team BYU is.

    More from SB Nation:

    All our coverage from Week 3’s Saturday

    Trying to explain that insane Wisconsin-Arizona State ending

    The full story of Alabama-Texas A&M

    Yahoo! Sports shows evidence of agent money in the SEC

    Would coaches rather replace Mack Brown or Lane Kiffin?

    Today’s college football news headlines


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  • 09/16/13--06:54: BREAKING BAD: "OZYMANDIAS"
  • 1. Well, hello, Steve Gomez!

    Gomie_medium

    (via)

    For those who thought all those bullets didn't hit anyone last week, and thus screamed about how unrealistic the firefight was, well...congrats? Breaking Bad has traditionally been all too happy to linger on the deaths of its characters: the slow strangulation of Krazy-8 with the bike lock in season one, the unbearable scene of Jane's death in season two, and even the lingering shot of a half-destroyed Gus Fring head at the end of season four all paused, at least, to take in the moment. Gomez is dead before the episode starts, and Hank is in the ground less than ten minutes later. It's a change of pace, but we're at that point where the desert starts eating everyone, and sand covers everything in sight.

    2. You knew Hank was dead as soon as Marie opened up the garbage can and found the bloody remains of Hank's simulated headshot, but Hank wasn't far behind. He knew Jack was going to kill him from the start, and that's how you get to one of the episode's less obvious mirrors: Walt, crying in the same shot Gus Fring mourned his dead partner.

    3. Why did Walt tell Jesse about Jane? I don't think it's a matter of simple spite, or confession, but a bit of both done in the act of burying Heisenberg. The desert is Heisenberg's birthplace, and that spot in particular is where Walt shed his pants, got naked, and turned into the meth devil incapable of telling the truth. That for me is why this is not a matter of pure spite: if this were Heisenberg talking, Jesse would not deserve honesty, but would be something manipulated with lies, poison, or force. This is the first act of Mr. Lambert, the horrible byproduct of the chemical reaction between Walter White and Heisenberg. Mr. Lambert is about clearing ledgers, burying bodies, and crawling out of the desert with new covers and blank tracks--something happening in this same scene. If Jesse's hurt by it, that's fine. But this is less Heisenberg stabbing Jesse one last time than Mr. Lambert veering into inhuman Dr. Manhattan territory, and erasing every trace of what he once was in service of creating his own galaxy.

    4. Another bit of chemistry: in pulling barrels of cash out of the ground, Heisenberg has literally turned liquefied bodies in barrels into cash.

    5. I laughed out loud at Walt rolling the barrel along to the Limeliters' "Times Are Getting Hard, Boys" both because it's a literal rolling out of the barrel for the worst party ever, and also because Meth Sisyphus walked right past the pants he lost in season one's opening RV cook scene.

    I also laughed because Walt is clearly on some serious postmodern anti-hero imagery here: stuck in the desert, his bullet-riddled luxury car dead in the road behind him, cancer-riddled and pushing a barrel of blood money into a baffled Native American man's yard. That's how far the show has pushed you, the viewer: not only did it make you root for a psychopathic meth dealer for several years straight, and hate his wife for merely suggesting he not sell meth and kill people, it made this the funniest scene since Walt's roof pizza tantrum. (This, despite Hank getting his brains blown out just a few minutes prior, because Vince Gilligan is a nice man and a demented kidnapper of a storyteller.)

    6. For some reason, with grotesque Walt shedding his skin and becoming something even stranger, I kept thinking about the final scenes in Cronenberg's The Fly, when Jeff Goldblum, beyond mutated and fully transformed into something horrible, decides that the best way forward through the hellscape he's about to call life would be to--why, yes! Let's jump in the teleporter and take the whole family along for the ride. You know, for togetherness. That's Walt here, his jaw falling off, obviously monstrous to everyone but himself, wondering why the family won't get in the truck with the thing trailing slime all over the carpet.

    7. I've said it once, and I'll say it again: shooting is just business, but stabbing is passion. And if Skyler could have caught Walt running out of the house with the baby, she would have gutted him with that knife. Instead you get the part where we see that there is something even Mr. Lambert won't do: kidnap his own child, and take her away from her mother.

    8. Koala Care AND the huge family-sized stall? Mr. Lambert is an abhorrent creature, but he picks only the nicest of bathrooms to change his daughter in. By the way, if you are a business and do not have a Koala Care in the men's bathroom then FUCK YOU. Changing kids' diapers helps Dad build up credit for future cash-ins like uninterrupted time watching football, and this robs us of that.

    9. Purple is the color of confession in the Catholic tradition, if you're wondering why Marie is always surrounded by it. The scene where she breaks down Skyler in the office is one of four or five emotional terrors in "Ozymandias," particularly because you, the privileged viewer, know just how fleeting that moment of triumph really is. The church element has been there from the start for Hank and Marie, by the way: the purple, the sanctuary of their tiled, mission-style house, Hank brewing beer like a happy monk, Hank framed behind the confessional wire as Jesse refuses to talk to detectives. Marie, clad in black for most of the episode, is probably not done ministering yet, I think.

    10. Oh, one other association with purple? It was the Victorian color of mourning.

    11. Another long transaction paid off: Jesse threatening to start a fire in the White House in "Confessions," and the eventual appearance of the fire department at the end of this episode. We don't know what watching any of this is like for the childless, but Walt putting on one last performance for Skyler in order to leave the children with at least one un-jailed parent while coming apart at the seams did give Mr. Lambert back something like three cents of humanity. He got another few cents back when the lights in the fire station went on, and you realized there was something he could not do, and something left of humanity in him. (Or at least something that recognized he was no longer human enough to care for another living thing. That's different, but still significant.)

    12. The show has gone so far into anarchy and the underworld and a place of utter desolation that seeing firefighters playing cards in the dark seemed hilarious to me--that anyone was on watch, and capable of rescuing someone else in the name of a greater good.

    13. I have no idea where the show goes from here, or whether you can adequately top the burnoff from this episode. So much of the show is about building, mounting tension that finally setting the trap and watching it snap down on its quarry did seem...off. Or at least wrong, because for so long this show has lived in the realm of possible threat, and now is about the consequences, and the run into the grave for Mr. Lambert. How many other people slide there with him is the only question, and if you don't believe that check the array of headstone-like rocks framing him at the waiting point. (As they framed Jesse, who finished the episode a zombie, buried alive in a pit, his face distorted from violence, and chained to the meth trade.) Flash back to Walt watching Scarface, and openly wondering if everyone dies in this movie. There's a house to ruin yet--the one Skyler and the kids are sitting in at the end. Mr. Lambert is going to need an M-60. It's not something you use for baptisms and baby showers.

    14. Jesse is on a leash, but won't be on it for long. The last thing you see in "Ozymandias" is a stray dog crossing the road, after all, as Mr. Lambert drives off into the sunset.


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    Agon. The fundamental conflict in a Greek drama or tragedy. I don't know what makes a classic game, or a classic ending, period, but it has something to do with balance: at the end, did you feel like it obeyed its own logic? Did it run out the rules as they were laid out at the start, and at both ends was it consistent in its rationale?

    The 2007 Fiesta Bowl is a classic game, and not just because of its ending, but the ending clearly matters. It's not like Boise just pulled one rabbit out of its hat: it pulled three in a row in short succession, and got away with it because Boise was small, fast, and smart. Oklahoma was big, dumb, and ultimately slower on the brain-trigger than the wily opponent. Marinade the rest in a little luck, and you have a satisfying result. It was a conflict, is the point, and that conflict had rules.

    BTHO. A story where characters follow their own rules should lead to a result you find sensical and satisfying. Texas A&M's code is aggression: nimble, speedy aggression across every point of the field. They did come out and run quarterback lead-option looks Alabama had never seen before, because of course they had that ready. They did throw fearlessly at Alabama's corners, because what have you done? Who are you? When we put this ball in the air, you know who our playbook says catches it? The giant wearing the Aggies uniform, the one who will beat your ass all day because one-on-one with knowledge of the ball going through the air means advantage, offense.

    Of course A&M did this all day. They are Kevin Sumlin's team, and Johnny Manziel is his avatar, maybe the best he will ever have at quarterback for channeling the naked animosity his style of football has for defense. (Note: for a school fond of "BTHO [TEAM GOES HERE]", it took them a long time to hire someone whose entire attitude and ethos is that from start to finish. Imagine Mike Sherman down 49-35, and tell me you would believe he had a shot at tying the game with two minutes left.)

    Carapace. Alabama followed code, too. Halfway through the game a former coach texted me: why was Saban leaving his corners in man? Why was he so damn stubborn? The answer is because that is what Nick Saban does, and has always done, and will always do. Coaches may evolve. They rarely do so mid-game, much less when the corners are part of a defensive system that has four national title rings. The answer every down, on the perimeter or along the offensive line, was the same: cover your man, use the sideline as a defender, and funnel action to the middle of the field.

    Nick Saban is stubborn, but so is the fact that for Alabama, there is no more perfectly designed challenge -- no more ideal Holmes to their Moriarty -- than A&M. Wherever you are weak, they will pry. They will often tear the carapace off of the war machine you have worked so hard to create.

    Digression. A quick aside about the dangers of poor human sign coordination.

    Lubbock is weird at night. (And during the day.) (And during whatever you call the strange twilight accompanying a passing dust storm.)

    Entrusted. Nick Saban also happened to be stubborn in another way: more than anyone would like to admit, he listens to trusted players. Last year, tied with LSU and driving in a horrendous road environment, Saban listened to Barrett Jones, who thought a halfback screen was there for the taking. Alabama ran the screen, T.J. Yeldon hit the endzone laughing, and the win saved Alabama's season.

    This year, with the game on the line, and Johnny Manziel waiting on the sidelines for a chance to tie, McCarron called his own play: a play action pass to the fullback in the flat, aka "stealing money on the goal line, because the fullback is always open if he gets out of traffic." It is odd to think of Saban as stubborn in the sense of being a player's coach when it counts, even if it is potentially risky. But that's genuine battlefield improv on display and an astonishing display of trust in a moment the Crimson Tide's entire offseason had been building towards.

    Foley, Alabama. The hometown of Kenny Stabler, another quarterback who was allowed to call plays at the line of scrimmage at Alabama. That's worth noting in two directions: one, that Bear Bryant wasn't above letting a smart player help him, either, and two, that AJ McCarron is approaching stratospheric company in terms of program peerage.

    Gunwale. McCarron will not ever take a picture this masculine, however.

    Howard. In the end Alabama would win because of a different stubbornness written into the code of the team: their offensive line, and a blind faith in their quarterback's ability to make completions on first down. McCarron made daring throws through coverage, including several throws over a linebacker and in front of a safety on seam routes to O.J. Howard that required a bombardier's touch. Alabama kept passing the ball on first down, getting the ball to yet another set of lethal legs downfield, and did so through the seamless blocking of the offensive line. McCarron did have a brilliant game. He did so much more than management. He also left the field with a spotless jersey, something so obvious the quarterback himself noted it in postgame interviews.

    International. Please also remember that the offensive line coach who helped make that possible -- Mario Cristobal -- was fired from Florida International University and replaced with Ron Turner. Florida International, a three point underdog going into the game, lost 34-13 to FCS Bethune-Cookman on Saturday. Everyone here got exactly what they deserved, especially Florida International, whose every loss we will cite this year because THEY HIRED NORV TURNER'S BROTHER TO DO STUFF.

    Jonathan Football. With that, you can only really fault Johnny Manziel for not playing safety on more than one play. (That one, a diving miss of Vinnie Sunseri, was a disastrous turn at the position.) One interception was a laugher of a mistake, the other, a forced ball given the Matt Davison Kick Of Indifferent Fortune, and then run into the end zone by Sunseri. The rest: a white-legged dervish heaving easy catches to an NBA forward playing wideout, scrambling in terrifying traffic, and gouging more points from the hide of Alabama than almost any team in the Tide's history.

    I'll watch a monster movie any day of the week, but will watch it twice on Saturdays if it's these monsters.

    This needs to go on for a bit. His QB rating for Saturday's game was his third-best, lifetime. Those other two opponents he was better against were Sam Houston State and Rice. He passed for over 400 yards against only one opponent last year, a smoldering crater of an Arkansas team too stunned to realize what was happening. Under Manziel the offense averaged 8.8 yards a play, double the 4.2 yards per play total that Alabama opponents averaged in 2012. With his defense flattened on the ground all day, his secondary in shambles, and his run game skewed heavily towards him, he still had a chance to tie the game in the fourth quarter against the best football mecha assembled in the modern age.

    He was, despite all the advantages granted to the opponent by circumstance, chance, and sound management, right there at the end, waiting. I don't care what league this is, or what level of competition, or whether the SEC has sneakily transformed into the Big 12 overnight. I care even less about the result. Johnny Manziel at quarterback has paid himself the ultimate compliment: he has ruined future versions of himself in comparison to what he is in college, and achieved the kind of cartoonish gigantism of youth only granted players like Vince Young, Tommie Frazier, Sammy Baugh, Herschel Walker, a strange beast whose adult life as an athlete will pale in comparison to the space he occupied at 20.

    Kaiju. Japanese for "strange beast," aka the creatures in Japanese monster fiction, which is clearly where we are with Alabama. This giant robot crushes all it sees in the landscape, blocking the sun as it wishes. It has an opponent, a strange beast that rises from some accident of nature. It takes losses in the struggle before adjusting, relying on superior machinery, cunning, and the belief that the machine is always right. And when that machine is wedded with sheer potential and scientific discipline, it always wins.

    Saturday was Pacific Rim football played out in the Hate Barn at Kyle Field. The Apocalypse was cancelled for Alabama, though not after a lot of loud noises, frantic action, and a final defeated challenge. The plot is predictable, but you're not always here for plot. Sometimes you're here for the noise the scales make slamming into steel, and to watch a unique beast like Manziel struggle against the perfect calculus of Alabama, and its ideal pilot, McCarron. That this could be the last installment of it -- and likely will, given Manziel's struggling relationship with amateurism -- is the only negative here. I'll watch a monster movie any day of the week, but will watch it twice on Saturdays if it's these monsters, and this level of desperation on every play. I'd watch it again right freaking now.

    Louder. It is adorable how Chris Spielman's voice keeps getting louder when someone makes a bad play, like he's lost control of his voice, and is a car with a bad wiring system speeding down the interstate.

    Math. It is hard, and harder for some. Skip Holtz, why did you go for two when your team was down 24-15 with 3:54 on the clock against Tulane?

    We were going to have to go for two either early or late. At least then, if you made the two then you kick it deep because you are in a one score game and you play defense and try to get the ball back. If you go for two, you are going to know when you go for two you, whether you need two possessions or not to kick the onside kick. If you wait until the very end to do that, you do not have that opportunity any more.

    So, let's illustrate that.

    Skipholtzmath_medium

    This makes no sense, Skip Holtz. This is opting for a more difficult scenario for your team that requires the exact same actions as your first and easier option. It is nonsense, gibberish, hooferaw, balderdash, gobbledygook, and total bullshit. Also total bullshit: getting mashed out by Tulane, a team that just lost to South Alabama in their first full year of FBS membership. You don't have to be good at math to be a football coach. You simply have to know you aren't and delegate the job to a card, like Bret Bielema does when going for two with a 50-point lead. (At least then, you can always blame the card.)  P.S. See "S" entry below.

    Nick Marshall.Completing passes to himself already, and throwing game-winning touchdowns with 13 seconds left for Auburn. That's Nick Marshall, a former DB who allegedly cannot throw a football very accurately, being told to go out and throw a game-winning TD against a lively Mississippi State defense with spare change on the clock in a game when a field goal could have sent it into overtime.

    It's times like this that I wish Ron Rivera coached in college football, because I would love to see what kind of unholy, red-assed beating Gus Malzahn would deliver unto him, and exactly when in the game Rivera would kick a field goal while losing by 40. (Answer: early fourth quarter.)

    Obstruction. Of justice, as in the case of Wisconsin's endgame implosion against Arizona State, a failure of execution by Wisconsin and miscommunication between the officials that cost the Badgers a shot at a game-winning field goal. In summary, Wisconsin stepped into an open elevator without looking, and that's on two people: the elevator company, and the person who didn't look before stepping.

    Also, field goals should be outlawed, and are un-American, and everyone should just be like Gus Malzahn and bank on a daring endzone strike rather than the foot of one very unsteady college kicker, because this is America. We believe in rocketry, end zone scores, and daring the defense to do something about whatever we want to try next.

    Punterception. Noun: the interception of the ball off the foot without ground contact, bobbling, or jostling of the ball in its reversal from flight to carriage in the opposite direction.

    Quaeritur. "The question is asked" in Latin, as in, "Who are a few good candidates for the rotating guest spot coaching Texas' defense after Mack Brown, incensed by a loss to Ole Miss, fires Greg Robinson this week?" Candidates:

    • Joe Lee Dunn
    • Joe Kines
    • Jerry Glanville
    • Mickey Andrews
    • Matthew McConaughey
    • Robert Earl Keen
    • Lyle Lovett (he seemed to know a lot about football on TV)
    • Dikembe Mutombo
    • Rob Ryan
    • Longhorn Network Dial-A-Blitz Contest (user voting by text determines playcall)
    • Yahtz-D (short straight = double A-gap blitz, full house = Cover 2)
    • A very polite and slightly overweight 14-year-old boy with a lot of good ideas he got from NCAA 2011
    • Bobby Petrino (he'd be there by nightfall)

    Rectified. The Longhorns did improve by not allowing a BYU player to run for 259 yards. They were playing Ole Miss, but given how they played this was probably still a theoretical possibility. They did still lose at home to Ole Miss, but we are trying to be positive.

    S is for Situational Math, aka Continuation, aka the same day correction. This was originally published without an "S," because I am not a competent adult. So let's continue the discussion of whether Skip Holtz sucks at math or not --because, as numerous commenters have pointed out to me, he doesn't, and I'm wrong, and they happen to be correct. (Sort of.)

    Situationally, you want the most information you can, so you go for two early to know that. Okay, that makes math sense, which we completely got wrong. And here's where math meets context, and why I'd still go for two early: THIS WAS TULANE. Make them prove they can avoid screwing up a game, and put the pressure on them, because they are fragile things, and my football team is not. Make them crack first, because they will, because, um ... blind optimism, grrr toughness, or some other blind instinctive belief.

    This would fall into the department of Grudenesque Things You Believe About Football Without Any Empirical Data. This list includes, but is not limited to:

    • Always go for a big play after a turnover.
    • Trick plays always work. ALWAYS.
    • A neckroll will increase a player's tackling ability by 50% instantly.
    • Never, ever quick kick.
    • Field goals are against America.
    • Rugby punting is against nature.

    It should be noted that neither Jon Gruden nor I coach football for a living at the moment, and Skip Holtz does. Apologies to Skip Holtz on that. He might be bad at other things, but he's not bad at math. We are, and Jon Gruden makes millions of dollars working one night a week and making Hooters commercials. Adjust your life goals accordingly.

    Tribe Called Quest Lyric That Explains Everything You Need to Know:

    Go get yourself some toilet paper cause your lyrics is butt

    Michigan, just forget about almost losing to Akron. Shhhhh. This never happened. You'll be amazed at how much this never happened in a few weeks. Clean up and move on and remember that Florida almost lost to Louisiana-Lafayette at home last year, needing a blocked punt to avoid disaster. Akron ran a short-side power run at the goal line with no time outs. Your lyrics are indeed butt. They require toilet paper immediately.

    Unleal. Unfaithful, as in this ball thrown by Sean Mannion on the final play of Saturday's most underrated game, the 51-48 OT win for Oregon State over Utah.

    Osutdbeatsutahtipped_medium

    (Via @cjzero)

    COME HERE BALL. MY HANDS WERE ON YOU. I WAS SUPPOSED TO INTERCEPT YOU AND INSTEAD YOU LEFT ME FOR THAT MAN WHO WON'T LOVE YOU LIKE I WILL, BALL. COME BACK. COME BACK AND I WILL LOVE YOU LIKE NO MAN EVER COULD. Also, Utah ran on the first two plays of the overtime, which seems conservative until you check the stats and realize that Utah had run easily on Oregon State all night. Yet they got little, missed on a pass attempt on third down, and had to attempt a field goal. They did what they were supposed to do by the numbers, and still lost. The numbers are bastards sometimes.

    Vallum. A wall, like the one in front of the endzone in Buffalo, New York.

    Screen_shot_2013-09-16_at_2

    Four overtime possessions without a score, and you should burn this tape, this box score, and all memories of what transpired here.

    Weis. Has now lost 16 straight games to FBS competition, including this weekend's 23-14 loss to Rice. That is an unkind stat. This is unkind SEO:

    Screen_shot_2013-09-16_at_2

    Let this be a warning that in this day and age Google does your marketing for you, Kansas football, so watch what you say at press conferences.

    Xenodochial. Kind to strangers, as in Nebraska, who allowed 31 points in the second half, scored none, and lost 41-21 to UCLA at home. That Nebraska has had this much trouble building a defense seems baffling at this point. This sentence is evergreen. Cut-and-paste it, and use it in every analysis of every Bo Pelini Nebraska team since Ndamukong Suh's graduation.  This sentence, however, is new: Nebraska's offense disappeared completely in the second half and had no response to UCLA's onslaught.

    Yellowback. A lurid novel, like the one someone could write about Bobby Petrino's lone year in Western Kentucky before taking an offensive coordinator's job in the CFL. Bowling Green Nights will be a steamy account of one football coach, the team he loves, and probably not about how they lost to South Alabama this weekend, because some things are too graphic even for the Thug Erotica table at Barnes and Noble.

    Zorro. It means "foxy" in Spanish.

    Lubbock: the place where wildlife makes itself part of the game, and freshman quarterbacks come off the bench to throw game-clinching touchdowns.

    More from SB Nation:

    What we learned from the Alabama-Texas A&M classic

    Pretty much everyone agrees Wisconsin-Arizona State ending was botched

    All our coverage from Week 3’s Saturday

    You shouldn’t care about Bo Pelini vs. Tommie Frazier

    Would coaches rather replace Mack Brown or Lane Kiffin?

    Today’s college football news headlines


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    That's Chris Kiffin of Ole Miss, caught by his wife preparing during a bye week for a looming game against Alabama while also waiting for the birth of his child. Before you get judgmental, let us say this to those who haven't had kids: there is a ton of waiting involved, particularly if your child has to be evicted from the uterus by induction. Still, Alabama fans, go ahead and claim a Birthing Experience Interruptin' National Title. NAME THE BABY NICK IF YOU WANT A WINNER, CHRIS. YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO. ROLL BIRTHIN' TIDE.


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    Yes, we'll get it on iTunes soon. No, you probably shouldn't listen anywhere where you can't listen to us do terrible impressions of Nebraska fans cussing out Bo Pelini. Yes, these topics are also discussed:

    • Why Bo Pelini is going to beat Bret Bielema in the Outback Bowl by four hundred points
    • Why a three-inch tall Houston Nutt would be the best three-inch tall coach ever
    • The importance of every football program's spot-uncle
    • An explanation of Zaxby's for those whose lives are impoverished by not having one nearby
    • Why Mississippi State has never had a father
    • What the exact percentage of your life savings you would bet on fight to the death between Mack Brown and Bill Snyder. (Answer: 110% of them.)

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    The American economy has not collapsed completely yet. But if it does, we may have to all make our living rapping.

    Some of us will be more prepared for this from birth by having a given name that already doubles as an MC handle. Some of those people will be football coaches, and some of them are already set for a stage name and ready to battle rap.

    (Finally, one list where Texas football is still number one.)

    1. Mack Brown

    2. Jerry Kill

    3. Al Golden

    4. Charlie Strong

    5. Sonny Dykes

    6. Bronco Mendenhall

    7. Rich Rodriguez

    8. Larry Coker

    9. Hugh Freeze

    10. Frank Beamer

    11. Doc Holliday

    12. Dabo Swinney

    13. Paul Rhoads

    14. Paul Petrino

    15. Butch Jones

    16. June Jones

    17. Kliff Kingsbury

    18. Urban Meyer

    19. Willie Taggart

    20. Jimbo Fisher

    21. P.J. Fleck

    22. David Bailiff

    23. Troy Calhoun

    24. Norm Chow

    25. Rocky Long

    26. Bobby Hauck

    27. Ron English

    28. Pete Lembo

    29. Tommy Tuberville

    30. David Cutcliffe

    31. Ruffin McNeil

    32. Bo Pelini

    33. Nick Saban

    34. Darrell Hazell

    35. Rick Stockstill

    36. Will Muschamp

    37. Mike Leach

    38. Bill Blankenship

    39. Jim L. Mora

    40. Bret Bielema

    41. Les Miles

    42. Mike Riley

    43. Mike MacIntyre

    44. Justin Fuente

    45. Don Treadwell

    46. Bob Davie

    47. Frank Solich

    48. Mike London

    49. Bobby Petrino

    50. Paul Chryst

    51. Mike Gundy

    52. Mark Richt

    53. Paul Haynes

    54. Matt Rhule

    55. Joey Jones

    56. Mark Dantonio

    57. Lane Kiffin

    58. Mark Stoops

    59. Paul Pasqualoni

    60. Ron Turner

    61. Tony Levine

    62. Curtis Johnson

    63. Rod Carey

    64. Steve Addazio

    65. Trent Miles

    66. Steve Sarkisian

    67. Bill O'Brien

    68. Dave Clawson

    69. Gus Malzahn

    70. Garrick McGee

    71. Dan McCarney

    72. Mark Helfrich

    73. Carl Pelini

    74. Larry Blakeney

    75. Dave Doeren

    76. Dan Enos

    77. Scott Shafer

    78. Randy Edsall

    79. Todd Berry

    80. Todd Monken

    81. Jim Grobe

    82. Kyle Flood

    83. Bob Stoops

    84. Kirk Ferentz

    85. Steve Spurrier

    86. Paul Johnson

    87. Doug Martin

    88. Jim McElwain

    89. Bill Snyder

    90. Larry Fedora

    91. Art Briles

    92. Charlie Weis

    93. Dana Holgorsen

    94. Ken Niumatololo

    95. Mark Hudspeth

    96. Matt Campbell

    97. Gary Patterson

    98. George O'Leary

    99. Rich Ellerson

    100. James Franklin

    101. Ron Caragher

    102. Dan Mullen

    103. Bryan Harsin

    104. Matt Wells

    105. Dave Christensen

    106. Charley Molnar

    107. Brian Kelly

    108. Pat Fitzgerald

    109. David Shaw

    110. Sean Kugler

    111. Chris Petersen

    112. Brady Hoke

    113. Brian Polian

    114. Jeff Quinn

    115. Kevin Wilson

    116. Kevin Sumlin

    117. Tim DeRuyter

    118. Tim Beckman

    119. Terry Bowden

    120. Dennis Franchione

    121. Skip Holtz

    122. Gary Andersen

    123. Todd Graham

    124. Gary Pinkel

    125. Kyle Whittingham

    More from SB Nation:

    Spencer Hall’s Alphabetical: Strange beasts in College Station

    Bo Pelini’s profane rant isn’t bigger than Nebraska

    What we learned from the Alabama-Texas A&M classic

    Pretty much everyone agrees Wisconsin-Arizona State ending was botched

    Would coaches rather replace Mack Brown or Lane Kiffin?

    Today’s college football news headlines


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