- RSS Channel Showcase 2480977
- RSS Channel Showcase 9906063
- RSS Channel Showcase 7976014
- RSS Channel Showcase 1586560
Articles on this Page
- 09/17/12--10:11: _EDSBS GEOLOGY! LAYE...
- 09/17/12--13:13: _THE LOGICAL END TO ...
- 10/06/12--20:53: _College football ra...
- 10/07/12--11:26: _LAFF RIOT, WEEK SIX
- 10/08/12--08:07: _THINGS GO BADLY FOR...
- 10/08/12--10:06: _HOMERIC TENDENCIES:...
- 10/08/12--13:06: _AN IMPORTANT MATT E...
- 10/09/12--06:31: _THE CURIOUS INDEX, ...
- 10/09/12--12:34: _The Alphabetical, W...
- 10/09/12--11:53: _THE ALPHABETICAL: B...
- 10/10/12--05:37: _THE CURIOUS INDEX, ...
- 10/10/12--08:17: _OH SO POWERFUL POWE...
- 10/11/12--06:31: _THE CURIOUS INDEX, ...
- 10/11/12--11:53: _A WORD FROM CRAZY O...
- 10/12/12--06:52: _THE CURIOUS INDEX, ...
- 10/12/12--07:57: _HAIRCUT SWITCHING W...
- 10/13/12--13:49: _Raider Red is not a...
- 10/13/12--21:36: _Don't ever go to Lu...
- 10/15/12--06:54: _SHUTDOWN FULLBACK P...
- 10/15/12--09:04: _HOMERIC TENDENCIES:...
- 09/17/12--10:11: EDSBS GEOLOGY! LAYERS OF THE EARTH'S CRUST
- 09/17/12--13:13: THE LOGICAL END TO FACEMASK GROWTH
- 10/07/12--11:26: LAFF RIOT, WEEK SIX
- 10/08/12--08:07: THINGS GO BADLY FOR UGA, AND STEVE SPURRIER IS RIGHT THERE TO HELP
- 10/08/12--10:06: HOMERIC TENDENCIES: LSU
- 10/08/12--13:06: AN IMPORTANT MATT ELAM METAPHOR
- 10/09/12--06:31: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 10/9/2012
- 10/09/12--12:34: The Alphabetical, Week 6: Dr. Paul Johnson says to amputate
- Alabama. They're perfect, shut up, no girl YOU shut up, you look great in that dress you should buy it.
- Oregon. Suspect defensively, hasn't played anyone, makes Nick Saban question the very definitions of life itself.
- South Carolina. Indomitable at home and underwhelming on the road.
- Florida. No semblance of a passing game at 111th in the nation.
- West Virginia. No defense. Dana Holgorsen driving this truck with no seatbelt on and the doors removed.
- Kansas State. At 107th in the nation in passing. Florida 2009 redux, but with more cow jokes.
- Notre Dame. A superb defense that watched THE Tommy Rees play snaps this past weekend on offense.
- Ohio State. There's Braxton Miller, and then no one of note on the depth chart to frighten a defense.
- LSU. A sewer fire of an offense. We don't know how a sewer catches fire, but Les Miles could make it happen.
- 10/09/12--11:53: THE ALPHABETICAL: BONUS LETTERS, WEEK SIX
- 10/10/12--05:37: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 10/10/2012
- 10/10/12--08:17: OH SO POWERFUL POWER RANKINGS: WEEK SIX
- 10/11/12--06:31: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 10/11/2012
- 10/11/12--11:53: A WORD FROM CRAZY OLD TESTAMENT GOD ON GETTING WHAT YOU ASK FOR
- 10/12/12--06:52: THE CURIOUS INDEX, 10/12/2012
- 10/12/12--07:57: HAIRCUT SWITCHING WORKS IN ALL FORMATS
- 10/13/12--13:49: Raider Red is not afraid to stare you down
- 10/13/12--21:36: Don't ever go to Lubbock: College football Top 25 scores, Week 7
- 10/15/12--06:54: SHUTDOWN FULLBACK PUTS AUBURN ON PERMADUFF
- 10/15/12--09:04: HOMERIC TENDENCIES: VANDERBILT
IN ANOTHER OF OUR ONGOING attempts to educate the youth of today about the importance of science, we would like to discuss an issue we believe is at the core of basic earth science. GET IT? It's about the core of the earth, and the many-layered, fiery onion of a planet we call home.
The first layer is the crust, the soil-heavy layer the oceans rest on top of, the layer you call home! It's about 70 kilometers deep at its thickest point as a solid, silicate-heavy coating for the earth's semisolid interior. Following that is the mantle, which under the pressures of the earth's weight become gradually more liquefied the deeper you go into its 2800 kilometers of molten iron and magnesium.
If you've made it this far, you will find the core. Its outer layer is liquid iron, while the solid interior contains solid iron under intense pressure. Oh, and somewhere between those two layers you will find Matt Barkley and his poor backup center, freshman Cyrus Hobbi.
This has been your EDSBS Science Lesson for the week. Someone please pull Matt Barkley and Cyrus Hobbi out of the earth. Additionally, you did not see David Shaw daggering with Lane Kiffin while the Tree watched on and looked far too comfortable with all of this. No, no you did not.
There isn't really a proper name for it. The diagonal grid version is the Justin Tuck, while the more properly aligned matrix extending clear up to the cheekbones might as well be called the Bane. (Again: Bane is just wearing a CPAP, there is nothing funny or intimidating about sleep apnea. HE's MEAN BECAUSE HE NEEDS SLEEP.)
In a game so boring it qualified as SEC-grade, it was hard not to notice Michigan State and Notre Dame have both embraced the newest in football fashion: the mega-mask, aka the cowcatcher you wear on your face. So has Texas, and if Texas is already on it, then soon they will have the biggest, most expensive, and impractically swaggy facemasks in college football.
It's not like nose tackles need to really see anything. They work more on smell, anyway. Did you know a defensive tackle can smell a single drop of blood up to seven miles away in open water? And will just wait for you to bleed out, because it's nice on the dock there the grill and the food and the ladies are? Take note: what they lack in abs they make up for in draft value and reduced heating bills, ladies. (The husband, guard bear, and heat pump, all in a single gigantic package.)
1. Alabama. Bye week. Nick Saban probably spent time with Urban Meyer's family. This is a joke; he watched film 16 hours a day like he always does.
2. Oregon. Put up 35 in the first half on a hapless Washington team, and then let Puddles hold up the play cards for the second half.
3. Florida State. An entirely unprecedented loss, for the observer who had not watched Florida State lose to Clemson or Wake Forest last year on the road, or to N.C. State in 2010, or at Boston College in 2009, or at Georgia Tech in 2008, or any of their other blindside road defeats preventing FSU from attaining maximum "backness." With a weak ACC slate to come and only Florida left in the quality non-conference category, Florida State is effectively out of of the BCS title picture before it truly started. This should also feel like something you have read before.
4. LSU. Lost to Florida 14-6, made seven first downs all day, and did so without a single fake field goal or punt. I don't even know who you are, Les Miles, but you did make it across the 50 in a big game, and there's something to be said for that.
5. Georgia. Lost 35-7 to South Carolina in a game that was at no point competitive in any way. Your annoying homeopath friend says you might want to go gluten-free and see if it helps, Dawgs.
6. South Carolina. Destroyed Georgia 35-7 in a game that was at no point competitive or even challenging for the Gamecocks. Mainline whole cinnamon buns! Gluten is great and is helping your game, South Carolina, and your annoying homeopath friend failed out of community college, so why listen to him about anything, dude.
7. Kansas State. Charlie Weis' decided schematic advantage meant a 40-point loss at the hands of geriatric mastermind Bill Snyder this year. In comparison, former KU football coach Turner GIll's strategic advantage in 2011 meant only a 38-point loss for Kansas against K-State in this game. This means nothing statistically speaking, but everything on a spiritual level.
8. West Virginia. Closed out a 48-45 road shootout with Texas by running the ball for the winning score because life is strange, but Dana Holgorsen is even stranger.
9. Notre Dame. Defeated Miami 41-3 and amassed 584 yards of total offense while holding Miami RB Duke Johnson to 23 yards. This is the part where we remind you to be cautious about Notre Dame while pointing to the box score and nodding enthusiastically and whispering, "Manti Te'o kills men for their own good," over and over again.
10. Florida. Kept its second-half scoreless streak on defense alive while finishing LSU with 24 straight runs on offense. Like good sausage and how it is made, 2012 Florida football is an ugly process to watch with a delicious finished product. (This week's flavor: grass-fed tiger meat)
11. Texas. Was turned into a slightly more disciplined Baylor by West Virginia, something WVU does to everyone. Texas also gave up 207 yards to WVU on the ground, something that should alarm even those accustomed to the warping effects of Dana Holgorsen football on other teams.
12. Ohio State. Quietly staged their own ridiculous 63-38 shootout with Nebraska, but also benefitted from the appearance of 2011 Taylor Martinez and three gift-wrapped interceptions. Definitely the best team in the Big Ten, and that's a real shame since a.) they can't officially be the best team in the Big Ten this year, and b.) that title means way less than it used to, football-wise.
13. USC. Hiccuped early on the road at Utah, and then unloaded on the Utes for a 38-28 conference win. Definitely looked like a superior team to Utah, and see point B from above to reference exactly how much that means.
14. Oregon State. Beat Washington State, 19-6. Resisting urge to call this a "workmanlike" victory. Surrendering, and just giving in to calling it "workmanlike."
15. Clemson. Continued Paul Johnson's year of pain by defeating Georgia Tech, 47-31. Neither looked as good as Duke did on Saturday. Comprehensibility is something the ACC says is for the weak.
16. TCU. Lost 37-23 to Iowa State in Fort Worth, ending the nation's longest winning streak at 12 games and making Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads very proud to be your football coach. (Yes, you. He's proud of you even if your real dad isn't.)
17. Oklahoma. Pummeled Texas Tech in Lubbock 41-20 and did what Bob Stoops does best: go to an obscure corner of the Big 12 after a loss and then burn said town to the ground.
18. Stanford. Won a wild 54-48 overtime game over Arizona that was on at the same time as LSU-Florida just to make the submission match in the Swamp look even more like Cro-Mag SEC football. Arizona's Matt Scott threw the ball 69 times in this game. If you find his arm on the floor, please express mail it to him as soon as possible.
19. Louisville. Bye week. Charlie Strong lifted weights, most likely. Lots of them.
20. Mississippi State. Beat Kentucky 27-14, which means as much as any victory over Kentucky can at this point in history. (Answer: not much.)
21. Nebraska. Still on path to yearly goal of being America's best four-loss team after 63-38 loss to Ohio State.
22. Rutgers. After throwing for a profligate 400 yards-plus against Arkansas, Rutgers' QB Gary Nova returned to the confines of the Big East this week, a place where neither team gets more than 300 yards combined. A 19-3 victory over UConn? Ah, feels like home.
23. Washington. Crushed by Oregon 52-21, but no team with "Bishop Sankey" on the roster ever really loses.
24. Northwestern. Lost 39-28 to Penn State, but still tied for second in the Legends Division behind Iowa. Will Iowa go to the Big Ten Championship Game despite losing to Central Michigan? Oh, you know this is all totally happening.
25. UCLA. Lost 43-17 to Cal, the same team whose only other win was against non-FBS Southern Utah.
Check the national college football scoreboard right here, and look through SB Nation's many excellent college football blogs to find your team's community.
All of the wonderment of last night can't really be summed up in a single tweet--unless that tweet is this tweet, or any of the others Holly collects in Laff Riot. Is there a picture of Morgantown Spider Man ordering a drink? Of course there is,because Spider Man needs as much strength as you do for a long night of couch fire combat in Morgantown.
It's horrible that Aaron Murray's house was egged after a crushing loss to South Carolina, but add in a cancer diagnosis for Papa Murray and it's all looking so much worse in the cold daylight of a Monday morning. The good news for the Murray family: it's a very treatable form of cancer with a high rate of recovery, and football is just football. They play other games, you get other chances, and that's why they call it a game and not real life. Thoughts, prayers, and all other positive signals in their direction.
The bad news for Georgia fans on a very insignificant football-type level is that the diehards don't seem to be very happy with that football-type business happening on the field. Doug even mentions the word "Donnan," and to bring up that moment in Georgia history is to acknowledge that things have come to some sort of awkward crux. (And as always, Steve Spurrier is way too happy to help Georgia fans lose their grip on the cliff wall at this extremely sensitive point.)
I smell a massacre. Appropriate Kanye: "Monster."
1. Les Miles is joy forever. You have varying antagonisms going with various coaches as a fan. Nick Saban is this bleak narcissist drudge-genius, Jimbo Fisher is the doofus workaholic, Gene Chizik as the hollow shacket riding out the Larry Coker plan at Auburn, and James Franklin is the preppie who asks "you want somethin', fucko?" before eating a fistful of pistol from Henry Hill in Goodfellas.
There are, however, some coaches who shed antagonism completely. Spurrier, being our real dad*, is immune to any antagonism. You don't enjoy losing to South Carolina, but a part of you understands how that could happen to an extent no one else can fully appreciate. Derek Dooley at Tennessee is too odd not to like, while Mark Richt's saintly demeanor and equally inoffensive record against Florida also makes him benign in comparison to others.
2. Les Miles' status as teflon don for opponents comes from so many things, but mainly his ability to drop a pin on the map of the world and show exactly how close and yet how far he is from your plane of reality.
3. Urban Meyer: the stepdad we really came to respect who then divorced our mother, had a nervous breakdown, and it turns out left the finances in a shambles after some ill-advised investments.
4. Yes, Les, we as red-blooded Americans all agree that there is nowhere else we would want to be. It's also insane how much you are the demento Patton of the SEC, capable at any moment of framing yourself dramatically against an electric blue sky. An American flag may drop behind him at any point during this moment. Anything's possible with Les, really, save for quality quarterback play and tiny, well-proportioned headgear.
5. Also, you were wearing a jacket on a scorching day in the Swamp. You're just bizarre in so many ways, most especially your total lack of functioning sweat glands. (This is why Les Miles pants constantly and spends hours a day conducting business submerged in University Lake on the campus of LSU.)
6. Red-blooded is relevant phrase here, and literally so, because my god, the blood. Six points in a first half, relentless violence, Jeff Driskel hitting the turf like a narcoleptic at 8 frames a second, and Matt Elam flooding entire zones of the defense with angry wasps he was excreting from his pores spelled nothing fun for either offense or the viewer. It would be dishonest to say that LSU/Florida 2012 was "fun" in any sense for an uninterested viewer, the same viewer who probably got much more out of watching Texas WVU or the first hellacious quarter of UGA/South Carolina.
7. It would also be equally dishonest to say that for those interested, watching two teams agreeing to strangle each other and wait for one to pass out wasn't totally gripping. Thus the total lack of panic at the half, when Florida trailed 6-0. In a game testing the ability to function without oxygen, Florida and LSU were both at the bottom of the pool looking happily at their watches and shooting each other the finger.
8. And before we get to who ran out of breath first--and that was LSU--salute the defeated by acknowledging Kevin Minter of LSU, the linebacker who tallied 17 solo tackles and 3 assists on the day. He was less linebacker than a Stanley Cup playoffs goalie having his own series, dragging down Mike Gillislee and eating pulling guards for three hours in between tackling Jeff Driskel before he even had a proper chance to finish his drop. Minter was unholy and unblockable in a losing effort, making him the defensive Nick Foles* of this week. That is a high compliment, even if it doesn't sound like it at all.
*The Arizona Wildcats QB who always, in losing efforts, posted phenomenal numbers and made tremendous and valiant efforts to keep his team in the game. They rarely worked, but that's the point.
9. Minter was partially to credit for the unreal split between Florida's yardage and first downs: 237 total yards yielding 22 first downs, with 134 of those yards coming on two drives in the second half. Offensive numbers this strange are always a compliment of one sort or another to the opposing defense, and in this case in particular to LSU's defensive line. Once Driskel spent the entire first half admiring the cloudless sky, Brent Pease just shut down the passing game and started piling in as many offensive linemen and tight ends as the law would allow. That number of linemen on one play: seven.
10. The number of runs (called or not) ending the game for Florida: twenty-five straight, mostly running "power," and all aimed at something seemingly irrelevant to the scoreboard.
11. That thing irrelevant to the score: inflicting pain. I have never seen a gameplan so designed solely in thrall to the notion of obliterating an opponent for obliterating them's sake, and in turn have never seen an offensive line so bent on murdering the man in front of them on every assignment. Scoring seemed incidental, and in the midst of a bar brawl, Mike Gillislee just happened to look up and find himself in the endzone.
12. And sure, Zach Mettenberger was awful, but let's put that in context. He had his best throw of the day, a field-flipping bomb to Odell Beckham, Jr, stripped from his receiver's hands by Matt Elam. He weathered drops all day, had little to no time to throw, and received 42 yards of support from the run game. In other words, he did pretty much what every other quarterback Florida has played this year did in the second half: nothing.
13. That said, we never, ever need to see Mettenberger try to do anything outside of the pocket ever again. He scrambles as well as Case McCoy does, and that is to say that we fear for his life with every step and pray he is not killed running blind, slow, and upright in the middle of the field.
14. When you remember this game, you will remember how ugly, how reminiscent of Auburn/LSU games of the mid-2000s it was with zero offense, pounding rushing attacks, warped facemasks at every turn, but remember this, too: this was the day Matt Elam became the Apocalypse Chief of this Florida team.
Elam even tried to kill his own teammates, and played in a haze of barely contained rage and naked aggression. Seven tackles, a forced fumble, a late hit penalty, and miming CM Punk were enough, but that forced fumble? That forced fumble saved the game on what could best be described as "some George Teague shit there."
True, Elam did not return it like Teague did, but the rest is there: a blown coverage, a game-changing play in the making, and then a recovery, refusal to give up on a play, and then a recovery that confirmed that all LSU's efforts would be in vain for the rest of the game. Plus, unlike Teague's play, it counted. (Poor George's play had been whistled dead by a penalty, but you shouldn't let the stupid rules dictate what counts in your memory.)
15. In terms of what you could have plausibly learned that was new about this team from watching the game, there's little. Florida remains a second half team with a primeval passing game, brutal run attack, and a defense that in quarters numbered three and four will negate everything you do and turn it into sad, voided effort. Mike Gillislee is the war-armadillo we always believed him to be, and Charlie Weis is terrible at his job. We already knew all of these things.
16. What you might not have known is how this team looks when angry. We thought the 2008 UGA game was the angriest Florida team ever, a team so bent on destroying Georgia that they used the score of the game and yardage given up to the UGA offense as their reps in offseason workouts. That may still be true, but as hideous as it may have been, nothing I've ever seen matched the malice on display Saturday.
17. This team is not capable of blowouts, but what it is capable of doing is winning a fight to the pain. There is a scene in Henry V where the French are charging in, the archers at the ready, and the camera quickly shows Brian Blessed as the Duke holding...a mace? And no face guard? It's a quick shot, but one that lets you as the viewer know who the craziest motherfucker on the field is that day, and also that when you see him beating a man into the blood-soaked mud of Agincourt later in the battle scene that doing so makes him so very, very happy.
18. On a day when Les Miles was standing on the opposite sideline, that's quite an accomplishment, regardless of how the rest turns out in what remains a very long and brutal season, but that's Will Muschamp's spirit animal: a man with a mace wandering into fight. Then, in celebration, he stage dives.
19. The Kanye for this week is "Monster." The reasons, after watching three and a half hours of headbutting and joint locks on the football field, should be obvious.
SORRY AUBURN IT'S COME TO THIS. At Auburn, it's better than you expect because after a while you go numb and let the endorphins take over. Or maybe not. We don't even know anymore when it comes down to this as a coping mechanism:
By the way, when Christina Aguilera says "If I share my secret, you're gonna have to keep it?" GIrl, the world knows about Spanx and it's no secret, honey.
AL GROHVERTURE, GROH-VER. That was brief. (Not that Paul Johnson really cares about time, place, or what you think, son.)
SORRY, UTSA. In Bill C's listing of the best undefeated teams UTSA gets no respect, but WVU is way up there and why the hell not? Provided Alabama short-circuits and they keep at the Auburn BCS title plan, it could totally work. Did you notice that requires Alabama making mistakes? We like improbably plots, and thus loved Prometheus. ("Jesus was an alien, dude. BOOOOOOOOOOONG RIP.")
WILL MUSCHAMP IS PLEASANT. The last one is the champion.
JUST CHILLING FOR A WHILE. That's TCU QB Casey Pachall, taking some time off where he will most definitely not be wearing Superman underoos in a park, nope, not at all.
CHARLIE WEIS IS A CHARMING INDIVIDUAL. Sending the seniors to lift and run while everyone else practices is indeed a way to make the team unite around, um...you? Because that's worked everywhere you've gone, and seriously Charlie Weis is just the worst, and has also made more money than you'll ever dream about having.
GOT MY ARMOR ON. The South Carolina Gamecocks will be donning camo pants for their game against LSU, which is a wonderful symbolic move that we still want to evolve to an SEC team wearing Realtree camo on the field. Let's make this happen, Tennessee. It's not like you've got anything to lose at this point.
THERE IS A BORING ANSWER FOR YOUR DRAMATIC PROBLEMS, HOKIES. And at great length, The Key Play explains that boring answer in one word: fundamentals.
ETC: Felix Baumgartner is falling from space today, and lucky you, you can watch it from your desk. Hawkeyes legend Alex Karras is gravely ill, so thoughts, prayers, etc to him and his family. Tim Tebow makes no mistakes, ever. Arkansas sports are the best sports as long as we're not talking about football. Monkeys say fuck your cucumber, man. Imagine that college coaches invent good ideas you can use in the pros. BEST CAR CRASH SCENE EVER. The MMA Hour almost had real live assault on it yesterday. Free Radiohead is free Radiohead.
Atomic. This part is about Gus Malzahn, but first you need to hear about Tsutomu Yamaguchi, the only man on the planet to survive two atomic bomb attacks. Yamaguchi, a Nagasaki resident, was on a three-month business trip to Hiroshima when the first bomb hit on August 6th, 1945. Despite being burned over much of the left side of his body, Yamaguchi got treatment and showed up in bandages for work on August 9th. In his hometown of Nagasaki. Where the Americans dropped a bomb at 11:00 a.m., and Yamaguchi had to have had the most justified, "REALLY, LIFE? I MEAN REALLY?" moment ever.
Bailing. He lived. In comparison, what Gus Malzahn has survived is piddling, but comparable in terms of timing. Malzahn was hired in a cheap recruiting ploy at Arkansas, then thrown clear into the arms of Todd Graham at Tulsa. Malzahn's offenses thrived, but fate intervened again as Malzahn opted to move to Auburn, and thus both missed the Todd Graham Pitt disaster and met up with Cam Newton. After one non-Cam season at Auburn, Malzahn then took the oddball move of going to Arkansas State. This looked very strange until Auburn imploded this year and Arkansas got Petrino'd, and now Gus Malzahn is 3-3 at Arkansas State, comfortable and in line for interviews as a head coach in the offseason.
Corollary: If Gus Malzahn suddenly leaves a bus you are riding, you leave with him. That bus is about to explode.
Delocated. The very strange Adult Swim show about a family living in witness protection. It's really a show about people wearing ski masks all the time no matter where they are, but most of the plots center on identity, and how hard it is changing from one thing to the next. This is going to be about Auburn, yes? You're damn right it is, but there is a lot more to it than that.
Eagle War'd. The Auburn case proves a lot about staff continuity in the negative sense of the argument. Having switched out offensive and defensive coordinators over the offseason, you know see all the pitfalls of a team sorting out their identity on the fly: missed assignments, mismatched talent functioning in systems they've never played in before, and usually one unit (at least) that cannot even come close to functioning properly. In Auburn's case this is the offense, a unit riding in the bottom quintile of college football in every major category.
For the less statistically inclined. The Tigerplainsmen scored seven points against Arkansas, and they arrived by a trick play. That explains the inky sadness of the depths the Auburn offense lives at these days just as well as any other number does.
Gadolinium. The mineral that makes MRIs work through a series of complex chemical interactions you can read all about if you're really bored. If you don't want to read that, just know this: if ingesting gadolinium sounds like it would be bad for you, you have great instincts, but also miss the point of an MRI: diagnosis.
We've reached the point in the season where trial and error (mostly error) have let anyone and everyone see what is wrong with your football team. With the exception of Alabama, there's something grossly wrong with every team in the top ten.
Some of those are quibbles, but if you can do that in a few minutes on the top ten, everyone else below college football's obvious nobility can do this in seconds, and painfully so.
Hacking. Paul Johnson, M.D. and coach at Georgia Tech, read the diagnostics quickly enough in firing Al Groh six games into the season. Clearly a fan of amputation, Dr. Johnson performed the operation after the Georgia Tech defense gave up more than 40 points in three straight games. This stretch included a 49-28 loss to Middle Tennessee State, whose only other 40-point game came against Memphis. This alone justifies the amputation. Proceed with your practice, Coach Johnson.
Item. In support of that diagnosis, here is an additional piece of evidence to drive home just how bad being compared to Memphis football in any sense of the word truly is:
Sometimes your life is merely a warning to others, and sometimes by life we mean "your football team." Memphis beat Rice 14-10 this weekend, however, making Rice your warning to others for the week. Don't be Rice football, ever.
João. As in Gilberto, the father of bossa nova who would fit right in with most football coaches in one respect: he never changed much, and used a few simple fundamentals to build a song. (Including playing piano one-handed, something that looks and sounds awesome when he does it, and sounds like a hamster hopping over the keys when you do it.)
Going back to change and football coaches, consider Alabama. You know what they do differently from year to year? The answer is very little, and always in increments. The best team in college football is a team whose basic strategies are something Nick Saban admits have changed little since his time as a young assistant with the Cleveland Browns working under Bill Belichick.
The only thing that has changed: he wore really cool glasses back then.
The formula is important, but the vaunted process is just like anything else that succeeds in football: it has to be done well, and it has to be done in a way that ensure replication under any conditions. It would be fun to mention this and compare Saban to a dronemaster, but he is far from alone in this emphasis on replicable results.
Karl Popper. German philosopher who would have been a fine coordinator at the college level.
Our knowledge can only be finite, while our ignorance must necessarily be infinite.
Assume nothing, and create something that works with an understanding that you may not know what's coming. This leads us to the West Virginia offense, a unit capable of admitting that ignorance and adjusting on the fly when necessary. When Texas showed two safeties high and the clock running, Dana Holgorsen did the unthinkable by doing what less audacious coaches would have done: he ran the ball.
See? Just look at that safety floating somewhere out around Lockhart, Texas.
Texas stayed two-high for most of the drive, and West Virginia responded by taking free money every time. Just like the Alabama defense's pattern reading and coverages, much of what makes Holgorsen's attack assumes little, observes a lot, and works with the numbers given. They do what they do, and only what they do. If this seems overly simplistic, well, go watch Auburn try to run a power-I offense with spread personnel, and you'll see just how hard it is to do in real time.
Lipothymy. A swooning, as in the Texas defense against the Hair Raid. Texas did a superb job against WVU relative to other defenses, forcing Geno Smith into two fumbles and limiting (limiting!) the Mountaineers to 49 points. Yet even with that effort, Texas finished the game by a.) guessing blindly and wrongly about WVU's endgame, and b.) refusing to let them run out the clock. The flipside: WVU's defense is so forgiving they let Texas score and then had to weather an onside attempt to seal the game.
Malaprop. Charles Davis repeatedly called Holgorsen (Hol-gurr-sun) by the last name "Hol-jurr-sun." This was the second worst error he made as an analyst this past Saturday. The first: saying Dana Holgorsen was calling "the game of his life." A game of Dana Holgorsen's life would involve so much more than football: waterbeds, casinos, skydiving, and that's just the stuff we can mention in front of the kids. (Also: it would involve his football team scoring more than a measly 49 points.)
Oddness. The best defensive effort against WVU so far? Maryland, who held the Mountaineers to 31 points. Randy Edsall's got superpowers, and never the ones he needs at the right time.
Prospect Hill. One of many high points in Boston where once could observe Frank Spaziani being fired sometime in the near future at Boston College. BC lost to Army this weekend, which while patriotic is not what you ever want to do in order to keep your job coaching football. Remember when BC fired Jeff Jagodzinski for interviewing for other jobs after winning 20 games in two years, and then gave the job to a lifelong assistant who appeared in need of a nap all the time? That was delightful.
Quinton. As in Patton, the Louisiana Tech receiver who faces Texas A&M this weekend in the game most likely to force defensive coordinators into seizures. Sonny Dykes will surely be going elsewhere this season, so catch the battle of "Who wants to be ranked No. 23 in the country" while one can.
Retread. We really want the whole firing conversation between Paul Johnson and Al Groh to have gone like this.
Al: Hey, Paul, I got this job lined up at Boston College.
Paul: That's great, Al.
Al: I know. I just don't want you to be weird about it. I'll finish the year here, and then go up there.
Paul: That sounds like a real opportunity, Al.
Al: Aw, pal, so glad you're understanding about that.
Paul. Oh, not at all. I said it was an opportunity. That's a fact. You're fired. That's another fact.
Al: [slumps in defeat]
Soft Spot. A list of Alabama's weaknesses at a team was supposed to go here. There are none, so here is a video of Bear Bryant doing comedy with Bob Hope.
His delivery's perfect, and in summary ROLL SKETCH COMEDY TIDE.
Torment. This has been covered elsewhere, but if you see Florida safety Matt Elam approaching, consider the irony of his position's name and the unavoidable harm you're about to experience at his hands.
Unacceptable. The slate this weekend features so little in terms of absolute value that we must flee to horror for entertainment, and...there it is, right on cue, the Paranormal Activity of college football viewing, Iowa-Michigan State. (The Big Ten Network is the camera in the corner watching the bedroom; the Iowa offense is the terrifying ghost watching you sleep.)
Vigilance. Everyone can use a little bit less of it in praising Notre Dame's actually-pretty-good football team if they beat Stanford this weekend, even if a Stanford-Notre Dame game in 2012 between two run-first defensive teams will be as ugly as a mannequin made of dead barnacles wearing fat pants and a sleeveless shirt. (This mannequin served as Stanford's quarterback under Walt Harris, and his life story will make the saddest 30 for 30 ever.)
Winless: Southern Miss, Eastern Michigan, and first-year FBS participants UMass.
Xanadu. A note to keep your chin up even if your football team has given up on life. Someone once sold Hollywood a movie about roller-skating wood nymphs, and if that can be done then anything remains possible for you, me, and all of us as humans, really.
Yadkinville. A small town in North Carolina, which is the state where Duke is, which is the school that has a 5-1 football team. It's a few steps to get from Yadkinville to Duke football, but be honest, your mind needed the time to adjust and accept Duke being the best football team in the state.
Zamindar. A landowner, as in Steve Spurrier, who can rightly claim after three straight defeats of the Georgia Bulldogs that South Carolina no longer owns them. South Carolina has been good at football for five years, and this and Spurrier's expanding estate in Columbia may be his greatest achievement yet.
Check the national college football scoreboard right here, and look through SB Nation's many excellent college football blogs to find your team's community.
The Alphabetical is up. Here are your bonus letters.
Alpha: Holy shit, it's The Entertainment.
Neiman Marcus sells this trailer for $150,000 American, and this is what you get with it. .
Tailgating will never be the same now that your Bulleit Frontier Whiskey Woody-Tailgate Trailer is on the scene. Designed by interior designer Brad Ford, it’s impressive on the outside, but what’s on the inside truly astounds: sleek leather furnishings and details from Moore & Giles, rich wood finishings (handcrafted from reclaimed Bulleit Bourbon casks), elegant glassware, and a top-notch entertainment system, including a flat-screen TV, Blu-ray Disc™ player, and a state-of-the-art sound system, plus a one-year supply of Bulleit Bourbon and Bulleit Rye. Bulleit To Go, a second gift offered by Bulleit Frontier Whiskey, includes a limited-edition handcrafted flask, a bottle of Bulleit Bourbon signed by founder Tom Bulleit, and a leather-bound edition of The PDT Cocktail Book: The Complete Bartender’s Guide from the Celebrated Speakeasy.
We really thought about rolling Doug up in it, sliding him bourbon through the hatch, and just making sure he's breathing every few hours until someone announces Mark Richt's firing. There are questions--what exactly would one define as a year's supply of bourbon--but the answers outweigh the queries. We could all just climb in and live forever like we were all floating around inside John Malkovich's skull. (Also in the catalog: personal jetpack.)
Beta: We really didn't say much about Florida State losing on the road in the ACC unexpectedly precisely because that's so expected at this point, and so unsurprising. The part that did makes us laugh was Mike Glennon's line: 30/55 for 259 yards. Nibbled To Death In Raleigh: The Jimbo Fisher Story, coming soon from EDSBS films after we makes this bold erotic thriller about the last days of the Glen Mason era at Minnesota.
Gamma: The other thing we really look forward to watching is Alabama in conference play, particularly in that stretch surrounding the LSU game. In 2009 they squeaked out the 12-10 game over Tennessee by the fat hand of Terrance Cody, and lost outright to LSU in The Game Of the Century Of The Fistfight Conducted With Broken Glass Taped To The Hands. Somewhere they will be tested, a fact we forget every year until it happens.
Delta: To a lesser but still curious degree, we want to see Mississippi State under pressure, as well, particularly Tyler Russell on the offensive side and the defense with a quarterback capable of real harm. They get that in Tyler Bray this weekend in the Tyler Bowl, but remember: the fun part about the kind of harm Bray can do is that you never know who's on the receiving end.
Zeta: We finally got Big Ten and Pac-12 networks this year, and that point where wants become needs? Both have crossed it. Viva tax deductions for work expenses! (Because we're never living without either ever again.)
Eta: Johnny Manziel may have 500 yards of offense by himself against La. Tech, and hoooboy is that something you want to watch happen.
Theta: Looking down the schedule, there is one probable win on the rest of Mizzou's slate: Kentucky. The rest, including a November 17th game against Syracuse, are either losses or tossups. Berks are indeed being stressed in Columbia in year one in the SEC.
DEREK DOOLEY MEANS IT WHEN HE SAYS YOU NEED TO PLAY HURT. The Vols coach underwent hip surgery this week and will coach from the press box against Mississippi State this weekend. The reason: he has been walking around with a broken hip for two months, and just now decided that he might want to do something about it. Derek Dooley is both the Job and G.O.B. of the SEC, and DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MUCH THESE PANTS COST?
THE CIVIL WAR CONTINUES. Good Bull Hunting continues to remind you of the importance of fully funding PBS.
DEAD BODIES. Just let us know how you feel, Mike Leach.
Some of them have been great and some of them have been very poor. Some of them have had kind of this zombie-like, go through the motions, everything is like how it's always been, that's how it'll always be. Some of them quite honestly have an empty corpse quality. That's not pleasant to say or pleasant to think about, but that's a fact. That's why it's been necessary for us to have the youth moment that we've had."
Well, it is roughly 28 days later in Pullman, and this is a pretty apt summary of what that kind of disaster looks like.
AND BACK TO THE FROZEN TUNDRA OF LOUISIANA WITH YOU. LSU had problems with the humidity and heat at Florida, according to Kevin Minter of LSU. We think this might have more to do with Minter playing eight miles out of his skull against Florida and making 17 solo tackles, and thus over-exerting himself doing the work his teammates did not, but that's something LSU can figure out back on the hardbitten wastes of the bayou.(Minter is right, though: the humidity in Gainesville is ridiculous. We have no idea how we spent four years there.)
WE'RE GONNA NEED 71. While every coach on the planet is being honest, why not Paul Rhoads admitting that you need exactly 71 points to win a game in the Big 12? It's just honesty day everywhere.
COACH. Longform does the story of one of those guys everyone in town called "Coach."
WITH OOOOHHHH SO MUCH POWERRRRRR----Power Rankings return, held in place here by the notion that always governs power rankings, i.e. that this only covers current power levels for the week, and not in aggregate. Alabama is one despite being on a bye, because they remain that terrifying merely sitting on their couch.
1. ALABAMA. The Ming Dynasty collapsed under the reign of Emperor Chongzhen, who with the enemy at the gates of the Forbidden City ordered his entire family together for a dinner. The Emperor finished his meal, and then killed every member of his family except for his daughter Chang Ping, who survived despite having her arm cut off by her dad. People in the past were really super tough, and dealt with missing limbs and sword attacks on a daily basis more than you do.
Anyway, Emperor Chongzhen went and hanged himself on a tree to avoid capture. You can still go to the Forbidden City and touch the tree. This is a reminder that when you are at the top, only bad things can happen to you from that point on, and that all striving is futile. Also, if Nick Saban invites the entire staff to dinner after the inevitable loss, DECLINE THE INVITATION. (Kirby Smart has two fake arms. He calls them "loyalty" and "John Brantley's ankle.")
P.S. It's still pretty great being emperor, so let the killings continue until morale improves.
2. WEST VIRGINIA. A down week for West Virginia is 48 points on the road. The Mountaineers offense is now their own distortion field, warping defensive rankings like massive volcanic eruptions dent climate patterns. The bottom three defenses in the Big 12 are two teams WVU has already played, followed by the Mountaineers themselves way down at the bottom. Some day we will tie Nick Saban to a pole and force him to watch a West Virginia practice where they play themselves, and then collect the tears of rage to sell on eBay. (Well, not a pole. A short post or sapling will do.)
3. OREGON. As a commenter rightly corrected us on in the comments in the Alphabetical, Oregon's defense is fine, even burlier than one might expect, and that the real weak link in the Ducks waddling death machine is the offense. Chip Kelly can probably fix an offense with a stuttering problem, because he's Chip Kelly and can turn eight JuCo tight ends and three nearsighted DBs into the nation's fifth best offense with two weeks of practice. He'll need a tub of Adderall to do it, mind you, but Phil Knight will make sure it comes in swoosh-shaped tablets in green and yellow colors. This Adderall will also have an mp3 player in it and shimmer in direct sunlight. Being Oregon is pretty awesome, and stop complaining about your offense, especially around SEC fans.
4. SAKERLINA. The nicest part about watching LSU/UF and then UGA at South Carolina was the contrast. Three quarters after the kick, Florida finally started drawing blood with the brick they kept banging against the side of LSU's adamantine skull, only really completely flattening the Tigers after an excruciating, protracted siege campaign.
Then you changed the channel, and South Carolina came out with twenty-one points already on the board and blazing. It's nice to win games, period, but winning the way the Gamecocks did is especially fun. You open the door. You explain you are from the Church of Flatter-Day Saints, and then you proceed to make them flatter and closer to Jesus than even Mark Richt ever imagined. Missionaries who read from the book of Clowney, who then appears like a fire-demon from the pages themselves and burns down your house: they will knock down the door to spread the word, and if necessary brand it into your forehead. Click-fuckin'-clack.
5. OHIO STATE. It's nice to be the Usain Bolt of the Big Ten: slow out of the blocks, horrendous form, only one trick in the arsenal, really, and yet still capable of laying the Brax-phallus on the bar to win every bet while sweeping up cash with both hands. Spectral talent at one very crucial position is a delight to behold, and when Braxton Miller actually has other people to involve in the game of American football. Fortunately for you, Ohio State fan, all one needs to beat Nebraska these days is one Braxton Miller over here, and Taylor Martinez over here throwing clean post routes directly to safeties. Taylor Martinez is a college football quarterback! Follow your dreams!
6. FLORIDA. The snapping turtle of SEC teams at the moment: slow to rouse, grumpy, and then capable of latching on to an extremity and waiting for gravity and fatigue to do the work of drowning you as punishment for ever messing with it. If that metaphor doesn't work for you, allow us to offer another.
Just a silverback who is very pushy about his dinner invites and RSVPs: that's Florida football right now. Like the noble mountain gorilla, we'll probably get clipped somewhere down the line by wily poachers, but you'll bleed and lose a limb in the process. (Also: gorillas are really bad at throwing things, much like our team.)
7. NOTRE DAME. The only team in FBS to have not trailed in a game this season deserves some recognition, even if they found out the fun way that Miami's tackles are just fat linebackers on the pizza-and-squats training plan. (Don't laugh: it worked for Big Ten linemen for years.) Their OH SO MUCH POWER RANKING could rise significantly with a win over Stanford, a team nearly identical in M.O. to the Irish. This should mean a 49-48 shootout in the making, since nothing in college football is easy or predictable save this: Manti Te'o, full of the love of god himself, will remind you that sometimes God wants you to hurt because LOL, God just likes to watch Stepfan Taylor take a helmet in the sternum all day.
8. USC. Robert Woods may have failed his concussion tests, but he passed a test of the heart, something dumbass football fans value because they cut open an earthworm in biology class one time and it was fine, dude. What's Lane Kiffin's power move in every life situation? The double move, since he's NFL-style. (NSFW GIF GOES HERE.) James Bond and Lane Kiffin: dicks gettin' it done, one bikini-interrogation at a time.
9. OKLAHOMA. Scored 41 points in Lubbock while Tommy Tuberville texted Jimmy Sexton about the Kentucky job and quietly mouthed "thank you" to Bob Stoops standing across the field.
5. Cranky (ain't a bitch, unlike 90% of the Thomas and Friends cast)
3rd-1,092,0928th: NOT THE BAND
LET US NEVER FORGET THAT 2012 WAS THE YEAR OF THE BUTTCHUG. The appearance of the attorney and the production values really piece it all together.
If one thing about the past ten years of Tennessee football can tell you, it's that Tennessee fans take losses hard enough to drive them to the brink of madness and unsound practices, and that they also have horrendous taste in wine. We fondly remember the time we kiestered a 2009 Mitolo GAM Shiraz after the Taxslayer.com Bowl victory, and still savor the notes of "bottle in our ass" and "oh god what the hell are we doing." But a night out with Jack Del Rio in Jacksonville has to end one way or another, and that was "another."
GOOD LORD, JONNA CHIZIK. God is really uncomfortable about being brought into Auburn's current football situation, lady.
GOOD LORD, LADY FICKELL. We're sort of on the side of the Fickells/pizza barons here, but a bit more on this in a minute.
AND THUS ENDS THE DUMBEST NCAA CASE UNTIL THE NEXT ONE. Boise will accept the number of scholarship reductions at nine in the case of Boise's NCAA violations of housing rules. If Butch Davis is reading this now, he will not be in a moment because dying of laughter ends your life.
JUST DABO'IN IT UP. Dabo and Spurrier are becoming a nice pairing. Enjoy in fall when their flavors are ripe and ready for consumption.
WE'RE WAITING FOR YOU TO STOP GIVING US FREE YARDAGE. The Florida run game relies a lot on creating an unaccounted gap in the defense, and then runs gap-creating Power to that side, and then repeating said thing until you adjust and force them to do something else. This is what happens when you don't listen to Jared Lorenzen discussion your human resources decisions.
THE NONSTOP PIPELINE OF GENIUS IS ON. New 8-Bits up over at Shutdown Fullback's pipeline, including Herbie the Husker taking B12 shots until his head explodes. Speaking of, if you didn't watch 9.79 the other night, one should probably do just to watch Ben Johnson get super-ripped, win everything, and definitely prove that steroids are something you should never, ever do, especially once you get that fat Diadora contract.
ETC. They turned out alright.
And now for an answer to a request from an influential member of the Auburn football Waffle House family.
This is the response I gave to one of our fans, Brandi Efferson, on facebook today. Maybe one of you will feel led to take this on.... "I have given quite a lot of prayerful consideration to your desire to help and make a difference this season and I do have a thought.
CRAZY OLD TESTAMENT GOD:
OH HO HO HO HO I BET YOU DO. GO ON, I"M FINISHING A SINKHOLE SWALLOWING EVERYTHING AROUND IT. I CALL IT JOHN L. SMITH. YOU'VE MET, I BELIEVE.
As you know, Social media can be a very powerful tool.
SO CAN CHOLERA. HOLY SWEET ZAXBY'S, DO I MISS CHOLERA. GONNA HAVE TO BRING THAT BACK FOR RETRO THURSDAYS.
Recent examples of its power can be cited by googling how it played a primary role in the Occupy Wall Street protests, the uprising in Egypt, the Konya 2012 movement,
...and the various flash mobs that randomly occur all over the world to name just a few examples.
OH COME ON FLASH MOBS ARE SO 2008. I KNOW AUBURN IS A FEW STEPS BEHIND BUT YOU HAVE A JIMMY JOHN'S IT'S NOT LIKE YOU'RE A WASTELAND.
[GLOWERS MENACINGLY WITH GIANT BARN FIRE IN HAND.]
Therefore, my humble suggestion is to create a VERY POWERFUL "ALL IN" movement of your own.
LIKE SODOM AND GOMORRAH? AT FIRST YOU HAD MY INTEREST, BUT NOW YOU HAVE MY ATTENTION, PUNY HUMAN.
We have fans all over the US and I think it is time that they RISE UP and snatch back what satan, himself, has stolen.
NOW WAIT A ME-DAMNED MINUTE, APE-FLEA. YOU CAN SAY A LOT OF THINGS ABOUT SATAN. DOES HE PRIDE HIMSELF ON HIS FIDDLE PLAYING A BIT MUCH? UNFORTUNATELY YES, BUT HERE'S THE PROBLEM: YOU CAN GET REALLY GOOD AT ANY INSTRUMENT, AND YOU KNOW, YOU STILL HAVE TO USE IT TO PLAY MUSIC YOU LIKE. AND EVEN THOUGH IT SOUNDS HILARIOUS OVER A 20 CAR PILEUP, ROGUE METEOR STRIKING A MOUNTAIN SHEPHERD FOR LIKE NO REASON OTHER THAN WHOOPS! THURSDAY, OR ESPECIALLY FUNNY WHEN YOU'RE COMMANDING A MAN TO EAT TWENTY POUNDS OF BOLTS AS A TEST FROM, YOU KNOW, ME, WELL...IT'S STILL BLUEGRASS, AND I STILL DON'T LIKE IT VERY MUCH. IT'S A FAILING, AND I'LL OWN THAT
I ALSO DON'T LIKE PHILLIP ROTH, WHICH IS WEIRD BECAUSE I THINK WE'LL GET ALONG SOME DAY ON A MOLECULAR AND PERSONAL LEVEL, YOU KNOW?
ANYWAY, SAY WHAT YOU WANT ABOUT SATAN, BUT THE GUY WORKS HARDER THAN ANYONE. ODIN HAS LITERALLY BEEN HIGH ON MY COUCH FOR THE PAST 2,000 YEARS. GODDAMN SWEDES AND THEIR PENSIONS AND FORTY MILLENNIA OF VACATION AND BUSTY BLONDES WHO JUST FREAK OUT LIKE SEXO-SPIDER MONKEYS AFTER THREE DRINKS AND THEIR MOTHERS WHO NEVER CALL AND SAY OHHHHH YOU COULD HAVE BEEN A NICE DEITY, BUT WHAT SORT OF WORK IS THIS---
I'M SORRY. PLEASE DON'T TELL MOTHER I SAID THAT. I'M JUST SAYING THAT SATAN'S GOT DEALS, BITCH. DEALS ALL DAY. YOU DON'T LIKE 'EM, DON'T SIGN THE CONTRACT WITH THE HARDWORKING RENT-TO-OWN BARON WITH THE SEXY LORD BYRON HAIR AND DISCO BALL IN HIS CARPETED VAN. HE'S AN EARNER, RIGHT MOM? RIGHT?
We serve a God who recovers ALL that "has been stolen" from us and there are times that He requires the efforts of His people to accomplish this truth.
OH I'M SORRY ODIN WAKE UP NO REALLY HERE YOU HAVE TO READ THIS--
[they laugh for a span of time unmeasurable in human terms, and considered excessive even by the loose chronological standards of Hindu gods--]
OH HOOOOWEEE I'M SORRY. GO BACK TO SLEEP ODIN. IF YOU DON'T PAY BACK RENT BY NEXT WEEK I'M KILLING ACE OF BASE IN A SPECTACULAR BUS WRECK OH STOP YOU KNOW I COULD NEVER DO THAT. I SAW THE SIGN AND IT SAID ACE OF BASE HAS YOUR HEART FOREVER, CRAZY OLD TESTAMENT GOD. SETTLE DOWN, THEY'RE FINE.
Just think about the effect it will have first for the players and their families who sacrifice daily but how it will impact the fan base as a whole.
SACRIFICE? AGAIN, YOU PULL ME BACK IN.
During the season of 2010 the fans came together each Friday afternoon to send our boys off with a reverse tiger walk and the effect of just that alone was palpable enough that it carried over onto the field each and every Saturday.
ACCORDING TO THIS DOCUMENT I HAVE IN MY HAND, COACH CHIZIK SIGNED AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT DEAL THAT SENT AN EFFECT ONTO THE FIELD. THE PAYMENT PER A CLOSE FRIEND OF MINE WHO MY MOTHER THINKS IS A REAL EARNER--[ROLLS EYES]--WILL BE ONE CAM NEWTON IN EXCHANGE FOR UNENDING MISERY FOR A DECADE AND ENDORSEMENT IN A CLOTHING LINE OF INNOVATIVE SHACKETS.
I SAID HE WORKED HARD. I NEVER SAID HE HAD TASTE IN CLOTHING.
I encourage you to think outside the box and create something that will show the rest of the world WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO and why when we refer to ourselves as FAMILY that we mean it.
THE ALLCAPS ARE SHOUTING LADY AND ARE TOTALLY UNNECESSARY.
I look forward to see what you come up with. Blessings, Jonna Chizik P.S. feel free to share all of this as you feel led! WAR EAGLE"
YOU LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING WHAT WE COME UP WITH? OH YOU SHOULD, LADY. I HAVE A TENDENCY TO GET IN A RUT WITH EARTHQUAKES AND THE OCCASIONAL ALIEN ATTACK I MEAN YOU'VE PLAYED SIM CITY WITH DISASTERS ON IT'S JUST LIKE THAT AND TWICE AS MUCH FUN BUT WITH LIKE THE BIGGEST OPTIONS MENU ON THE PLANET. BUT SCROLLING DOWN HERE I SEE "SEVENTEEN POINT LOSS TO OLE MISS" AND I HAVE TO ADMIT THAT I SHUDDER A BIT AND THAT IS TRULY SAYING SOMETHING.
THE DEBATE FOR OUR NATION'S SOUL.
Les would be pretty great at debate, actually, since saying nothing in a lot of words can take you pretty far in life.
DISGUSTING AND UNACCEPTABLE. Florida university boards of trustees are always delightfully vocal and unpredictable--remember FSU's going rogue in about five seconds over realignment?--but even the usual madness can't totally discount a USF BOT member saying the current state of USF football was "disgusting" and "unacceptable." Skip Holtz is the PT Cruiser of coaches. We don't know what this means, but it just fits.
HAS A CLEMSON FAN ALREADY ACCUSED SOMEONE OF AN ANTI-CLEMSON MEDIA CONSPIRACY? If you had "First comment" in the pool, collect your winnings and head to the window, because that's how long it took for someone to do that under Godfrey's fine piece on the ongoing drama of the Robert Nkemdiche recruitment and his brother's development at Ole Miss. How dare someone write down quotes and publish them, aka oh my god you do not even understand how language works you peasants and we hope Robert Nkemdiche flips the whole world's coffee table over and takes up handball in Croatia.
AND NOW THEY ARE ONE. The most interesting thing to happen in the UTEP/Tulsa game? SOMEONE GOT THE GRAVITY GUN OUT AND STARTED DOING REALLY DUMB THINGS WITH IT.
HUMANITY ADVANCED ADVANCED. Jadeveon Clowney is the kind of player who makes opponents wonder not about their chances for winning, but about whether evolution itself has already passed them by.
SO SHUTDOWN FULLBACK AND LHN ARE ABOUT THE SAME SIZE, AUDIENCE-WISE.
We don't doubt the science of this at all. Hook 'em, you brave few.
ETC: Jim Lehrer has this shit on lockdown. This is what it's like to crash in a bus off a 30 foot cliff, a process that for the lead singer of Baroness included rebreaking his own arm. Clearly a novice at the art of cooking squirrel.
If the rest of the internet is doing it, Freek can do it better. This week's best matchups are not here because it turns out a lot of the best coaches have precisely the same haircuts, so you get these instead.
Homeless Frank Beamer is the saddest thing ever created. David Cutcliffe, meanwhile, was going bald, and decided to do something about it. Then he jumped into a pool, emerged with his hair unmussed, and then was immediately assaulted by five women half his age.
We not gay or anything, man, but Al Golden is just beautiful with the tousled hair, like Adonis if he ran a rental car place by the airport in Miami. (Which Al Golden does.) That's a belief you might feel uncomfortable voicing at New Voices Faith Covenant Church Community And Faith Center, but Pastor Fedora isn't going to judge (out loud, anyway.)
Hugh Freeze's hair color has no impact whatsoever on his demeanor. In contrast, change Gene Chizik's hair color and catch him at the right angle, and suddenly he's eight bong hits deep and looking for a bag of Flamin' Hots to watch HGTV with for the afternoon.
Put any head of hair on Dana Holgorsen and he turns into just another avatar of Holgo, but man, misplace one hair on Tommy Tuberville's head and he turns into a file photo of a physicist killed in a Manhattan Project criticality experiment.
Les Miles, assistant principal at every middle school you ever attended. Spurrier just looks even more redneck and alpha-crackery, which yes, is possible.
Sonny Dykes: Jewish. Kevin Sumlin: really thrilled at how the low-rise Jackie Wilson thing turned out.
You know things are going sideways in Lubbock when even Raider Red is mean-mugging you. The internet has already enhanced this moment for you, and you are so very welcome for that.
1. Alabama. The usual ultraviolence: a 42-10 home invasion of Missouri, an utter disregard for human life, and cruelty so abhorrent the weather attempted to intervene with a lightning delay.
The elements should have tried a little harder, because that suplex and the rest of the game still happened. A.J. McCarron had an injury at one point just to make things interesting, and then came back with a knee brace on and led a fourth quarter touchdown drive because Alabama football players have robot bodies and the souls of ruthless sharks.
2. Oregon. Bye week. Chip Kelly caught up on fives seasons of Breaking Bad in seven hours.
3. South Carolina. A 23-21 loss to LSU confirms much of what you already suspected: South Carolina is a very different team on the road than they are at home, Connor Shaw doesn't respond well to 275-pound men jumping on his head, and winning a game at night in Tiger Stadium is very, very difficult.
4. Florida. 31-17 is deceptive, since only Jeff Driskel's 177 rushing yards on 11 carries pulled Florida away from Vanderbilt. Then again, Jeff Driskel had 177 yards on 11 carries, topping Tim Tebow's single game record and taking Florida to 6-0 in a potential letdown game on the road, so deceive yourself, fool. You could have gone to Lubbock, and didn't. (Unlike some teams, like ...)
5. West Virginia. Went to Lubbock. Played Texas Tech in Lubbock. Fell behind by a halftime score of 35-7 in Lubbock and never really recovered in a 49-14 loss to Texas Tech in Lubbock. Had to fly all the way home and think about how they were going to reattach the asses they had handed to them by the Red Raiders in Lubbock. Don't ever go to Lubbock is what we're saying, especially if you're an undefeated team and Tommy Tuberville is waiting for you there.
6. Kansas State. A 27-21 win against Iowa State in Farmageddon had them grinding, but that's what unstoppable combines like Collin Klein do. This metaphor requires Collin Klein to be a limb-mangling piece of farm machinery, and that works, actually. Carry on.
7. Notre Dame. Tommy Rees threw the game-winner in a 20-13 overtime win over Stanford. You can obsess over the iffy call that ended Stanford's overtime possession all you like, but two things negate your concerns. One: if you get four cracks at the goal line after first and inches, you deserve to have the game flop into the unsteady hands of human officials. Two: TOMMY REES THREW THE GAME-WINNING TOUCHDOWN. If that happening isn't a harbinger of doom, you don't know what the word means.
8. Ohio State. Positive! The Buckeyes held on to a three-point lead late on the road. Negative! The margin came via a 52-49 score against Indiana, and a fullback was playing middle linebacker for Ohio State by the end of the game. Per Urban Meyer's postgame comments, he will continue to play there, too. Imaginary football that doesn't count for championships can be just as scary as real football in its own special way, Ohio State.
9. LSU. The hammering, slammering LSU gameplan Miles wanted against Florida last week happened against South Carolina, with the Tigers running the ball 53 times and reducing South Carolina's d-line to powder by the fourth quarter. [LSU QUARTERBACK] was underwhelming. (This year it's Zach Mettenburger, but the sentence is true every year, and has little effect on LSU's win totals.)
10. Oregon State. Cody Vaz, starting in relief of the injured Sean Mannion, threw for 332 yards and three TDs in a 42-24 win over BYU. The In-N-Out streak continues for Oregon State, a team so likable we'll all have to invent things to dislike about them. ("FIVE GUYS IS SUPERIOR AND THE FRIES SUCK!" says an east coast fan who clearly wants to die in a hail of thrown milkshakes and punches.)
11. USC. Beat Washington, 24-14, but Matt Barkley's still not quite right and had another mediocre night. But hey, it says "W" in the win column, and Lane Kiffin still has a reserved parking spot he puts his very expensive car into, like, every day, butthorn. (Translation: it's a win, and Lane Kiffin does not care what you think about it.)
12. Florida State. Beat FCS power Boston College, 51-7.
13. Oklahoma. A light scrimmage/exhibition at the Texas State Fairgrounds highlighted an uneventful bye week for the Sooners. The informal score was 63-21, but statistics took a backseat to the experience and reps their backups and young players got down the stretch. The Sooners expect a slightly tougher challenge when improving Kansas comes to Norman next week.
14. Georgia. Bye week. Mark Richt spent his time with his family relaxing and probably not working a lot. This makes him a normal person and a very strange football coach.
15. Texas. [APP IS NOT AVAILABLE] [ERROR MESSAGE 63-21] [BURN YOUR PHONE] [SHOOTS ASHES OF THAT PHONE AND THE APP THAT WAS ON IT INTO SPACE] [NEVER TALK ABOUT IT OR THE GHASTLY BUMP ON DAVID ASH'S WRIST AFTER THE GAME EVER AGAIN]
16. Clemson. Bye week. Dabo showed up to the stadium thinking there was a game, and then pretended he was just "looking at some film" when someone asked what he was doing.
17. Stanford. Lost, 20-13, to Notre Dame. Missed a first-and-goal chance to tie in overtime on four shots in a row, but can still hold important advantage of being the prestigious private school not located in the post-nuclear wastes of northern Indiana.
18. Louisville. Fought off a game Pitt team in a 45-35 shootout all your friends who are Big East fans will tout as "just the kind of football no one gives the Big East any credit for in the mainstream media." This is a joke; you don't know anyone who sticks up for the Big East, shut up, no really, shut up.
19. Mississippi State. Dan Mullen, with a lead and mere seconds on the clock, went for it on fourth-and-goal and got it to win, 41-31, over Tennessee. Why? Well, there's lots of technical reasons, but the first and most important would b--CLANGA CLANGA CLANGA CLANGA CLANGA CLANGA
20. Rutgers. A workmanlike effort in beating Syracuse, 23-15, which is the condescending way of saying "Rutgers plays ugly, unspectacular football."
21. Cincinnati. Beat Fordham, 49-17. Fordham, like Boston College, is not an FBS football program.
22. Texas A&M. Survived a five-hour, 59-57 bulletstorm with Louisiana Tech, largely due to the 576 yards of offense Johnny Manziel piled up by himself. He breaks the record held by Johnny Manziel, and will hold the record until Johnny Manziel sets a new record next week. Johnny Manziel cannot play defense, and this is Texas A&M's greatest weakness as a team.
23. Louisiana Tech. Came within a two-point conversion of going to overtime with Texas A&M in that 59-57 loss, and sadly cannot have Johnny Manziel play defense for them, either.
24. Boise State. 20-10 win over Fresno State. If you squint hard enough they look like "Blue Team Rutgers" this year.
25. Michigan. If a thunderous, 45-0 win over Illinois happens against Illinois, does it happen at all? (Answer: Yes, but don't let Illinois get any of its Illinois-ness on you.)
Check the national college football scoreboard right here, and look through SB Nation's many excellent college football blogs to find your team's community.
Mack Brown, you created a meme called "Texas Fuck Girl," and for that alone you deserve to be fired. (Texas fans really, really agree on this point, even the ones who admit you are the nicest person on the earth who totally deserves to be fired.) Shutdown Fullback this week focuses on Texas Fuck Girl's travails, places Auburn on the PermaDuff list for 2012, reviews Tommy Tuberville's impressive audition for the Kentucky job, and praises the performance of Barack Hussein Nascar's brother, Johnny Football.
Relevant Kanye: "It All Falls Down."
1. They still have that giant magnolia tree at one end of the stadium at Vanderbilt, something most schools would have razed to the ground in the name of seating. The word quaint sounds patronizing, but please don't think it is: that tree's shade covered the fence where my dad used to sneak peeks at Alabama when they came to town. There is legitimate emotion tied to the word in this case. It is quaint, and lends its own personality to an otherwise featureless stadium.
2. We hope trees don't have emotions or memories. If so, that tree is a bitter, twisted soul from the years of shitty football it has been forced to watch. It probably craves death at this point, but continues to live thanks to the indifference of the heavens and a lack of arms or legs to do the job.
3. Yet very rogue moon's eve or so, Vanderbilt will waltz up and drop a brick on your skull, and even if they don't beat you you come away shaken, disturbed, and questioning the order of the universe itself. Like PCP or ketamine, Vanderbilt football really isn't made to make anyone feel good: it's there just to disrupt and disturb, and then serve a dim, upsetting memory later in the season. Remember that time we did Vanderbilt in October on a Saturday night? And you ended up breaking Tim Tebow's single game rushing record? Yeah, let's never do that again, dude.
4. So if the question is "How is James Franklin any different from Derek Dooley?", then the answer is "because James Franklin coaches at Vanderbilt, and Derek Dooley coaches at Tennessee." That is not a fair answer to either, but it is the answer. Both have to this point relied on moral victories and bluster on the recruiting trail for food, and both are capable of seducing a room full of sportswriters in mere seconds.
5. For the record: this is not hard, since sportswriters are emotional whores looking for a reason to fall in love, and then stage the stormy breakup they will inevitably blast all over facebook and your texts. The first time it's a crisis, and the sixth time it gets blocked and unfollowed with an eyeroll. Sportswriters, in general, are everyone's worst exes all the time.
6. If the difference between a 42% winning percentage (Franklin) and a 47% total (Dooley) excites you, we salute your ability to argue marginal stupidities in famine conditions. It still doesn't describe their different situations, or how Dooley is now three years into a tanking rebuild at Tennessee, and how the expectations for him will always be higher thanks to Tennessee's glorious past and hypothetically competitive future.
7. If you'd asked us two years ago which job would be harder given school, circumstances, roster, and potential ceiling, we would have answered in the direction of Vanderbilt. Yet after watching Derek Dooley lose coaches, recruits, and a pile of games, one of these things is true: either the Tennessee job is way, way harder than anyone imagined, or Derek Dooley is very good at making things as difficult as possible, especially for himself.
8. We're leaning toward the latter. James Franklin, on the other hand, had his team at 24-17 within one score in the second half, and you can't really ask for much more as a second year head coach at Vanderbilt than that. It should have been 24-21, actually, were it not for Zac Stacy dropping a TD thrown right in his hands by Jordan Rodgers, and thereafter should have been closer if Florida had not whipped out the full zone read just in time to baffle an entire defense at once.
9. That zone read saved Florida's ass down the stretch, since the Commodores flooded Gillislee's run lanes to an absurd degree and left whole alleys of Vandy's defense unoccupied. It worked nicely on Gillislee, who ended the evening with 67 rushing yards. Meanwhile, Jeff Driskel averaged 16 yards a carry and broke Rhino Jesus' single game rushing record. The zone read's a pretty neat thing, especially when Brent Pease is unafraid to pop it out of several different formations with quality sales jobs done by Gillislee.
10. Driskel also had 77 passing yards, which is unimpressive, but won the game, which is impressive and trumps unimpressive. Will Muschamp ain't winnin' no beauty contests, but this is basically a Paul Johnson team with a great defense at this point. Did you know your fingers can sweat? They can, and did right as we typed this.
11. As for that defense, they had a solid night up front, particularly linebacker Antonio Morrison, who had six solo tackles, two assists, and did much of that working against the underrated Vandy running back Zac Stacy. Omar Hunter also had a large night with two tackles for loss and a lot of marauding bear-ness. These are the nice things to say about the night.
12. The bad thing to say is that Matt Elam's periodic moments of being totally rabid spread to Louchiez Purifoy and Marcus Roberson. All three played like they had no fewer than twenty angry bees in their helmets all night, and not in the good way, but in the bad swatting-at-everything-and-crashing-into-stuff way. Muschamp called it a sloppy night in the secondary, and with reason: Jordan Matthews had 131 yards on eight catches along with a TD. He's very good at his job, but so are the people in the Florida secondary when they're not undergoing one of their spells of misdirected aggression. (Saturday night's lasted around two hours, minimum.)
13. So that's Vanderbilt, a game on everyone's schedule that's as much a warning to others as a football program, and the one conference team you might plausibly call your team's favorite mistake. An unbalanced, sloppy effort at any point in the schedule might as well fall here where no one can see it, where you can remember that it all falls down without proper diligence, and that even with that it might all fall down anyway.
Florida played a mediocre game this past weekend and is currently ranked second in the BCS. Vandy is the kid squirting mustard in this video, and if that's not enough warning and tones of ominous foreboding, then the concept of metaphorical foreshadowing is wasted on you. (And we liked that clean white shirt so much, you little shit.)