Monthly Archives: September 2014

BC, UMass lose, Harvard wins, Florida State hangs on, Michigan embarrassed, Charlie Weis fired

Another college football September is officially in the books and what have we learned?

Not much.

The non-conference scheduling has been a joke, and anyone who can play a scintilla of defense has a chance to be a special team.

To paraphrase Casey Stengel, “Can’t anyone here play defense?”

A template example of that took place in Amherst yesterday where the Minutemen (0-5) blew another fourth quarter lead losing to Bowling Green 47-42: in what was called a football game.

But in reality it was another example of what the game is evolving into; flag football with helmets and pads, as both teams combined for an absurd total of 1306 offensive yards, with the jaw-dropping aggregate of 1032 of those through the air. UGH!!!

From a traditionalist’s eye, it just isn’t fun to watch.

The Minutemen, who also saw its temporary scoreboard collapse at the renovated McGuirk Stadium, could use some help from the militia for whom they are named.

UMass football is now a bottom feeding 2-27 since joining the ranks of “Big Boy” football.

But as we have stated before, if anyone can plug the holes in this rusted bucket of bolts, it’s Mark Whipple, but it needs to start happening, and soon.

One man who does know a little bit about defense is our friend, and former linebacker, Tim Murphy, the Head Man at Harvard, opened the Crimson’s Ivy League season with a come-from-behind 22-14 victory over its neighbors from the south Brown University.

Staying in the Ivy League, in one of the wildest games of the day, Yale celebrating the 100th anniversary of Yale Bowl, once the Mecca of college football, upset its longtime rival Army in overtime: 49-43.

The two former football powers first met when Grover Cleveland occupied the White House in 1893, and haven’t played against each other in over a quarter of a century.

The Bulldogs knock off the Cadets brought a big smile to the face of Yale’s legendary Hall of Fame Coach Carm Cozza.

Up at the Heights, the Eagles blew a huge opportunity, surrendering a last minute fourth down touchdown pass in its deflating 24-21 loss to the Rams of Colorado State.

Coach Steve Addazio aptly summarized the disappointment: “We didn’t close this game out,” as he pounded his fist on the podium. “Sometime, someday.”

If BC could have held serve it would have been in a great bowl-potential position 4-1 going into its bye week.

But the picture is now much more muddled with the Eagles (3-2) taking to the road for its next game against a talented bunch from NC State.

One down, and one to go.

In the “what took you so long” department: the Kansas Jayhawks finally pulled the plug on its overstuffed, overmatched and arrogant Coach Charlie Weis, who still has two years remaining on his contract. What a country!!

Weis was a pathetic 6-22 in his tenure at KU, and an abysmal 1-18 in conference play. Yikes!! Sorry Charlie!!!

Tick, tick, tick!!

That is the sound emanating from the football offices of Ann Arbor as Brady Hoke’s “Mighty Meechigan” once again went down, this time embarrassingly so to Minnesota: 30-14.

For only the second time in the last 24 years the Little Brown Jug changed hands, and for the first time in the 135 years of Maize and Blue football, the Wolverines, who have lost 8 of its last 10, have three losses in the month of September. DOUBLE YIKES!!!

As the game wound down, chants of “Fire Brady” reigned down from the rapidly emptying Big House, as the faithful will now settle for nothing less than a new head man prowling the Ann Arbor next season.

Can you say; Rich Rodriguez!!! Double Ouch!!

On the national scene, NC State held a first quarter 24-7 lead, before the explosive Seminoles awoke demolishing the Wolfpack 49-17 the rest of the way.

The victory enables Florida State to keep its tenuous hold on its numero uno ranking, but there are a lot of cracks in the armor.

And as bad as things are in Ann Arbor, Michigan and Lawrence, Kansas, the scene in Fayetteville is brighter than the Esplanade night sky on the Fourth of July.

Bret Bielema’s Hogs gave Texas A@M everything it could handle before succumbing in overtime 35-28, and in doing so, showed the Razorback faithful that much better days lie ahead.

Break up the Jumbos!!!!

After losing 31 in a row, Tufts football team won its second straight a: 42-24 victory over Bates. Good for them!!

In Columbia, South Carolina Steve Spurrier’s Gamecocks surrendered a pair of late fourth quarter touchdowns losing to a tough bunch of Tigers from Mizzouri; 21-20.

It virtually eliminates the Cocks in the SEC East race, and once again denies the Head Ball Coach a chance for his ultimate goal; capturing a SEC Championship for South Carolina.

The team playing the best defense around just might be the Rebels of Mississippi who knocked off Memphis: 24-3.

While the nation’s best player is Georgia tailback Todd Gurley, the best in Athens since some guy named Hershel was donning the black and red of the Dawgs.

Finally, in the Charlie Weis category of ineptitude, SMU, whose Coach June Junes quit after the second game, was crushed by TCU: 56-0. It was the second time the Mustangs have been whitewashed.

But here’s where Weis figures in: SMU has scored only a single offensive touchdown (0-4) this season, and that was a 33 yard Hail Mary TD pass against North Texas.

Now can you say Charlie Weis!!! YIKES!!!

Thankfully, this week, we finally begin a regular menu of conference play, so hopefully, as Stengel once said, “Maybe someone here can play some defense!!

That’s it from cyber-space. We’ll be up and running with our analysis of week 6 Wednesday night. Until then, Peace and listen to the music. pk

Sometimes things Don’t go better with a Coke!

We begin this week with a new twist on the classic Coke jingle.

In Ann Arbor, Michigan as the gridiron losses continue to mount, and attendance at the “Big House” continues its downward spiral, it has also become readily apparent that things don’t always; “Go better with Coke.”

It turns out, that the Maize and Blue administrators were unaware of this week’s Coca-Cola game-day promotion in which the company had purchased a block of tickets for Saturday’s game against Minnesota.

For anyone who made a Coke purchase totaling as little as $3, two tickets to the Wolverines/Gophers game (a $150 value) were also included. WOW!!

Unfortunately, the giveaway didn’t have the university’s approval. And once the Wolverines, who are increasingly worried about its bottom line, found out about the promotion, it was immediately shut down.

Michigan reiterated its thur$$t for Coke when it issued the following: “Coke is a great partner of ours … but due to a miscommunication, the promotion should not have run as-is.”

Nevertheless, just keep the $pon$orship rolling!! Fill those coffers!!!

This weekend, let’s see which teams see things go better, and celebrate its victory with a Coke, and which play so poorly, not even free tickets from corporate will entice its faithful to view the carnage.

No. 6 Texas A@M at Arkansas (Ch.4, 3:30 p.m.) Jerry’s World, Arlington, Texas The Aggies have been so explosive (55 pts – second in nation) its 12th Man may get the day off.

QB Kenny Hill (13 touchdowns – 1 Int.), the latest gunslinger to reside in College Station, can light a scoreboard quicker than Jerry Jones inhales a tumbler of Johnnie Walker Blue, which cashes out at $200 a bottle.

The Aggie’s maestro is assisted by a pair of earth movers; tailbacks Trey and Brandon Williams, while wideout Malcome Kennedy is his preferred field-stretching target.

The D led by sack-master (5.5) end Myles Garett, and backer Donnie Baggs, is vastly improved from last season’s Ole’-style matador eleven.

In Fayetteville, Coach Bret Bielema, the invader from Wisconsin, has the faithful starting to believe.

The Hogs have been slicing opponents behind its starry QB Brandon Allen, whose stellar play, along with tailbacks Alex Collins, and Josh Williams, and wideout Keon Hatcher, has given the Razorbacks better balance than Nadia Komenich.

The D, led by end Trey Flowers, and backer Martrell Spaight is improving, but still contains more questions than a ballot in a California state election.

In Jerry’s suite, the Johnnie Blue is splashed around in frustration, as A@M butchers the young, but rapidly improving Hogs.

Duke at Miami (ESPN2, 7:30 p.m.) The Blue Devils are 4-0 for the first time, since Bill Clinton was dallying in the Oval Office – 1994.

QB Anthony Boone directs Coach David Cutcliffe’s remarkable Durham renaissance, seemingly utilizing as many tailbacks; Shaun Wilson, Josh Snead et al, as the letters in Coach K’s surname.

Duke’s D, led by end Jordan DeWalt-Ondijo, backer David Helton, and safety Devon Edwards can be as ornery as “our” Duke from Savin Hill.

(When’s the last time you saw Duke smile?? I rest my case!!)

The U faithful are still waiting for the hurricane warning flags to be posted over Sun Life Stadium signifying the return of the former football juggernaut.

The Sons of George Mira are under the command of a curve-climbing true freshman QB, Brad Kaaya, whose job performance has been as impressive as Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

The Canes offensive catalyst is its dynamic tailback Duke Johnson, maybe the fastest Johnson since Atlantic Olympic Gold medalist Michael – 1996.

When the Hurricanes kid dart-thrower goes aerial, wideouts Clive Walford, and Phillip Dorsett, are dangerous defense testers.

The U’s D has a major disruptor in All-America backer Denzel Perryman, and is assisted by fellow backer Thurston Armbeister, and end Anthony Chickillo, but overall, has, as Jesse Jackson might say; “issues” stopping the run.

In a game in which a solid case can be made for both sides, we’ll take the Canes to take the wind out of the Dukies sails. Missouri at No.13 South Carolina (ESPN, 7:30 p.m.) This is a Ross Perot type of game.

To paraphrase the East Texas billionaire populist (now that’s an oxymoron), who twice ran for President, “Let’s look under the hood and see what we’ve got,” and what he’d find is two teams searching for some consistency.

Mizzou is directed by its starry sophomore QB, Matty Mauk (14 Tds – 4 Ints.), who happily performs in the anonymity that ISIS’ savage leader Abu Baker al-Baghdadi covets.

The talented dual-threat marksman is assisted by tailbacks Russell Hansbrough, and Marcus Murphy, while glue-fingered and chain moving wideout Bud Sasser, is a comforting Linus blanket target.

The D, anchored by book-ends; Markus Golden (hamstring will play), and partner Shane Ray, is like a cross walk, very pedestrian.

The Head Ball Coach, Steve Spurrier, who is now second alone to Bear Bryant in SEC victories, remains perpetually cranky regarding his squad.

But like Elle Macpherson in her prime, or German General Erwin Rommel, a fox when it comes to downplaying the talents of his Gamecocks.

After all, these Sons of George Rogers did defeat Georgia!!

The Cocks senior QB Dylan Thompson is no rolling stone, while tailbacks Mike Davis, a preseason All-America, and his partner Brandon Wilds, have the ability to splice apart any defense.

When the Tambourine Man from Columbia (not records) takes to the skies, receivers Pharoh Cooper, and Nick Jones are threatening targets.

But its D, led by backers; Skai Moore, and Sharrod Galightly, shows about as much spine as the Afghan Army (78th) in stopping the run.

We think the Chief Fox from Columbia, in a very tight game, adds another notch to his Hall of Fame resume.

No.16 Stanford at Washington (FOX, 4 p.m.) As the Cardinal fly to Seattle (this is for you BG – “and we don’t mean Timothy Dolan!”) it is imperative that it not drop to 0-2 in conference play, or its goal of a playoff invite, will disappear faster than the scent of incense at a High Mass.

The Sons of Jim Plunkett are directed by its oft erratic junior QB Kevin Hogan, who is assisted by a pair of pounding tailbacks; Barry Sanders jr. (7 yds. a carry – how’s that for pedigree), and his partner Kelsey Young.

When the big armed leader can find his target, wideout Ty Montgomery is as dangerous as an unannounced quiz in organic chemistry.

It’s early, but the Stanford D, anchored by backers A.J. Tarpley, James Vaughters, and safety Jordan Richards, has been harder to penetrate than the line to purchase an iPhone 6.

After compiling an eye-popping 92-12 record at Boise State, Huskies (4-0) Coach Chris Petersen is about to learn, to paraphrase Dorothy, “That he’s not in Boise anymore.”

The Sons of Warren Moon operate behind its dual-threat sophomore QB Cyler Miles, who has the luxury of targeting a trio of mercury-infused receivers Jaydon Mickens, and John Ross, and Kasen Williams.

When UDub grinds it out, tailbacks Lavon Coleman, and Dwayne Washington, carry the load.

The Huskies D returns nine starters, led by nose Danny Skelton, backers Shaq Thompson, and John Timu, but overall, this group has been as inconsistent as the striper fishing season in Boston Harbor.

We think Dorothy was right, as the Cardinal (not Dolan) fly home with the W.

Colorado State at Boston College – The Rams are capable of butting heads with anyone.

The Sons of Lawrence McCutcheon are directed by its starry senior QB Garrett Grayson (8 Touchdowns – 2 Ints.), who can choose from a passel of quality wideouts led by Rashard Higgins, and Joe Hansley.

But CSU’s ground attack, featuring Treyous Jarrells, and De Hart, won’t cause any sleepless nights for BC’s Mensa d-coordinator; Don Brown.

The Rams D anchored by a trio of backers: Max Morgan, Aaron Davis, and Cory James is a bottom feeding 103rd defending the run, which isn’t a winning formula against the Eagles.

Not even St. Ignatius saw this start coming.

The Eagles are just 3 victories shy from becoming bowl eligible, and by last Saturday afternoon, may have that number shaved to two. Amazing!!

QB Tyler Murphy (3 TDs. – 5 Ints.- 51%) is the engine behind the nation’s third best (336 yds. game) rushing attack, with starring contributions from tailbacks: Jon Hilliman, and Myles Willis.

But the Eagles QB, who has already accumulated 500 yards while averaging an eye-popping 9 yards a carry, completes a pass about as often as Jackie Bradley gets a hit, or Governor Patrick spends a day at the State House, and that one dimensional offense may be an albatross, or as Tom Menino once said “Alcatraz,” around the necks of the Chestnut Hill eleven.

BC’s top-20 D, featuring backers Steven Daniels, Josh Keys, and end Brian Mihalik, has been as stout as the Guinness hoisted in honor of Mayor Marty Walsh’s during his sojourn to Ireland.

It’s not quite a miracle, but we think St. Ignatius continues to be amazed, as BC’s victorious locker room belts out “For Boston” after it captures win number four.

Last week:   4-1                                                                               Season record:   16-4.

That’s it from cyber-space. We’ll be up and running with our recap by noon on Sunday. Until then, Peace. And listen to the music!     pk

Tufts end 31 game losing streak, Harvard, Dartmouth, FLorida State win, LSU, Indiana stunning wins, UMass crushed

There are plenty of places to begin.

We could start in Columbia, Missouri, or Tallahassee, Florida, or Baton Rouge, Louisiana, or Ann Arbor Michigan.

But instead we’ll stay local, and begin in good old Somerville, Massachusetts home of the Tufts University Jumbos football team.

Yesterday the Tufts eleven did something that hadn’t been accomplished on campus in nearly four full years, celebrate a football victory!!

The Jumbos ended its elephant sized 31 game losing streak with a 24-17 victory over Hamilton. Good for them!!!

I know one thing, its starting quarterback won’t be jumping onto the top of a table in the middle of the student union, and screaming a disturbing obscenity about women.

Remaining on the local front, kudos to a pair of Silver Lake Regional teammates Coaches; Tim Murphy of Harvard, and Buddy Teevens of Dartmouth for opening their seasons with victories.

The Commonwealth’s flagship university UMass Amherst 0-4, was crushed by a superior Penn State squad 48-7, and is now a bottom feeding 2-26 since signing on to play with the big boys!!

DOUBLE YIKES!!!

But as we have said previously, if anyone can turn this rust bucket around, it’s Coach Mark Whipple, who once again didn’t do any coddling when he said he thought his team played “scared” at Beaver stadium.

Now on to the national scene.

In Tallahassee, it was Clemson, once again in a big game, being Clemson, as the Tigers missed a pair of chip shot field goals, and had a number of costly miscues that left points on the field, in losing in overtime to the “Crablegs” (QB Jameis Winston) suspended Seminoles: 23-17.

It was tough to watch the phony Heisman Trophy winner, wearing his number 5 jersey, cheering on his teammates from the sidelines. YUCK!!

It felt as sleazy as a Steve Wynn casino production.

And the Seminoles, winners of 19 straight, remain a front runner for the ACC Conference title, and a coveted spot in the playoff race.

Speaking of yuck, there is a whole lot of it going on in Ann Arbor.

The once mighty Maize and Blue lost yet again, in another desultory performance; 26-10, this time at the hands of the Utes of Utah.

Michigan has now lost 7 of its last 10, and Coach Brady Hoke’s popularity now rivals the bottom feeding numbers of Barak Obama, as UM was the only loser in the conference yesterday!! DOUBLE YIKES!!

The game was delayed for hours by a biblical rain and lightning storm, which may be a message to the Administration about the way it handled the firing of the coach it should have kept; Rich Rodriguez.

But most importantly for any program, it’s fannies in the seats that do the loudest talking.

And there were thousands of empty seats at the Big House, with tickets selling on Stub Hub as low as $19!!! Holy coffers!!!

That is the ultimate coach killer, and will most assuredly making this the last roundup for the “Meeechigan Man” at Michigan.

As Gene Wilder screamed in “Young Frankenstein” “It’s alive!!”

And yesterday, the conference everyone loves to bury; The Big Ten, had a very nice day, as; Rutgers, Iowa, Michigan State, Maryland, Illinois, Northwestern, Minnesota, Purdue, Nebraska, and Wisconsin, and Indiana all won.

We’ll highlight the Hoosiers in its stunning upset in Columbia, Missouri, a 31-27 victory, in which Indiana scored with 22 seconds leaving the Mizzou faithful heads down and slumping in its seats.

It was IU’s first victory over a ranked team since W occupied the White House in 2006.

Good for them, and good for the Big Ten.

In the stop the madness scheduling: Michigan State, Georgia, Wisconsin, and Texas A@M outscored its opponents by the combined aggregate: 265-37!!!! ENOUGH!! NOBODY WANTS TO WATCH!!!

In another stunner, Mississippi State (4-0) got its signature victory in the Coach Dan Mullen era; a 34-29 Saturday night smack down of the Bayou Bengals in Death Valley. WOW!!

It was the Dak Prescott show, as the Bulldogs QB passed, and ran around the overmatched Tigers.

And MSU marched out of Baton Rouge with its first victory since Old Man Bush occupied the White House; in 1991.

The Bulldogs had lost 15 in a row against ranked opponents, and the Starkville eleven who had been a pathetic 2-22 against top-25 opponents under Mullen, played like it is a legitimate contender in the rugged SEC West Division.

Hail the smart kids!!!

Duke using a stifling D, clobbered Tulane 47-13 to start 4-0 for the first time since 1994, while VaTech is losing the beam off “Beamer Ball” as the Hokies lost two in a row at home for the first time since” 1995. Ouch!!!

Finally, in Tuscaloosa, Groucho’s favorite town, Alabama found its QB, as Blake Sims sliced apart a – at least was thought to be – a good Florida defense passing for over 440 yards and 3 TDs.

Bama crushed the Gators 42-21 in a game that really wasn’t as close as the 21 point deficit, and are clearly once again, one of the nation’s best.

That’s it from cyber-space. We’ll be up and running with our analysis of week 5 Wednesday night, until then, Peace, and listen to the music!!   pk

Disney’s Donald find a home in Eugene

We begin this week with a special duck.

No, not the duck from the Groucho Marx classic ‘Why a Duck’ in the movie “Cocoanuts,” or the “secret word” duck in Groucho’s television show “You Bet Your Life,” but the University of Oregon’s mascot duck.

And if you thought it had a strong resemblance to Disney’s ubiquitous Donald, you would be correcta, or to prove to my mother that my BC High Jesuit education wasn’t a complete waste of dough; recte.

The reason it resembles Disney’s Donald, which debuted in 1934, revolves around a friendship and a handshake.

Oregon’s original nickname was the: Webfoots, which eventually morphed into Ducks. And live ducks, all named Puddles, took turns quacking up and down the sidelines during games.

But that all changed in 1947 when the university was searching for a more consistent style of mascot.

And in a fortuitous turn of events, Oregon’s athletic director Leo Harris happened to be a friend of Walt Disney.

Disney told Harris that the university was welcome to use the image of Donald as its mascot provided it was done in good taste.

When Walt died in 1966, Oregon realized a contract for the use of Donald have never been consummated, so and the university and Disney officially put it in writing in1973, giving Donald a permanent residence in Eugene.

And now, as Paul Harvey used to say, “You know the rest of the story.”

This weekend, let see which teams play like it has webfeet, and which achieve such Magic Kingdom memorable moments, that even Walt Disney, would be impressed.

No.22 Clemson at No.1 Florida State (Ch.5, 8 p.m.) The winner has the inside track to a December invite to Charlotte for the ACC Championship game.

The early version of Dabo Swinney’s 2014 Tigers are like Stonehenge, a total enigma.

The Sons of John Heisman (coached 1900-03) are now under the steady command of its senior QB, Cole Stoudt.

The Death Valley igniter is assisted by a pair of tailbacks; turbo-fueled Wayne Gallman, and his partner Adam Choice, and when Clemson takes to the skies Artavis Scott, and Mike Williams, are big play targets.

But the success of the Tigers season rest on the shoulders of its high caliber attacking D, led by All-America end Vic Beasley, and backers Tony Stewart, and Stephone Anthony.

No one ever accused FSU QB Jameis “Crablegs” Winston of violating his Mensa Club privileges.

This moron with the big arm, who is also the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, has been suspended for the first half of this game for using “offensive and vulgar” language in the middle of the student union.

Now, that my friends, is pure genius!!

Back to the game, in which sophomore Sean Maguire will be the FSU starter.

If Florida State was written up for a Car and Driver review, it would read: has a Porsche-like interior and exterior features, but sputters, as if it is using inferior fuel products.

So far, “Crablegs” has played as if he needs a dose of Low-T tablets.

But if the Tallahassee coaching mechanics are able to perform a quick tune up, watch out, there are more stars on the Seminole roster than a night sky in Wyoming.

Mr. “CL” has a pair of All-America targets; tight end Nick O’Leary, and wideout Rashad Greene, but despite the quality o-line, and the ability of tailback Karlos Williams, FSU’s ground attack has been grinding in neutral.

The imposing, and constantly attacking D, led by corner Jalen Ramsey, and backers Reggie Northrup, and Terrence Smith, possesses more speed than the raceway in Daytona.

We think, even if “Crablegs” started this game, that it will be closer than the experts predict, but ultimately the Sons of Bobby Bowden earn the inside track into the ACC Championship, and a possible playoff spot.

Mississippi State at No.8 LSU (ESPN, 7 p.m.) This game will be a pedigree barometer for the visitors from Starkville.

Is MSU still your father’s Bulldogs?

These Sons of Jackie Sherrill are directed by its dynamic dual-threat QB Dak Prescott (9TD’s-1Int.) who can be as dangerous as a late Friday night in Chicago’s Southside.

The sharpshooter is assisted by tailback Josh Robinson, but is hamstrung by a pair of pedestrian receivers; Jameon Lewis and Fred Brown.

The teeth of the Bulldogs D is a front seven featuring tackle Chris Jones, end Preston Smith and backer Benardrick McKinney.

The Bayou Bengals are coming off two weeks of cupcake gorging, but like Joey Chestnut, must now be ready to slice into this entrée of substance.

QB Anthony Jennings, who is showing signs, like the “Body Snatchers”, of emerging from his incubation period, is assisted by a pair of field stretching targets; Travin Dural and John Diarse.

But as always in Baton Rouge, the calling card remains LSU’s anvil-pounding ground attack led by Kenny Hillard, and a mercury-elusive freshman; Leonard Fournette.

The D swarms like a pack of Kenyans training in the Rift Valley, and is anchored by ends Jermauria Rasco, Daniello Hunter, and backer D.J. Welter.

Overall, this group is harder to penetrate than the crypt of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen controlled under the watchful eye of New York’s Cardinal Timothy Dalton, who is in a pitched battle with the Diocese of Peoria from the control of Sheen’s remains, while his canonization remains in limbo.

Only in the Catholic Church!!

In a solid test for both teams, we think the Tigers in Death Valley, on a Saturday night, slobber out; “Hold that Tiger,” over another victory.

Florida at No.3 Alabama (Ch.4, 3:30 p.m.) The Fun-n-Gun days of Steve Spurrier are a vague memory, as the Gator offense has been as stagnant as Congress trying to pass immigration legislation, scoring a touchdown about as often as California see some rain.

That impotency has the Gator faithful in a full froth over the employ of Coach Will Muschamp.

This moribund eleven is directed by dual-threat QB Jeff Driskel with assists from tailbacks Kelvin Taylor, Matt Jones, and receiver DeMarcus Robinson.

In contrast to its brothers, the Sons of Tim Tebow has a defense featuring All-America end Dante Fowler, backer Antonio Morrison, and All-America corner Vernon Hargreaves with moves like Jagger.

In Groucho’s favorite town, Tuscaloosa, Alabama (“…When we tried to remove the elephant tusks they were embedded so firmly, we couldn’t budge them. Of course in Alabama, the Tuscaloosa …..” “Animal Crackers,”) St. Nick rules all.

The Tide has settled on QB Blake Sims to drive this championship wagon, and luckily the youngster can rely on a pair of All-Americas; tailback T.J. Yeldon, and wideout, Amari Cooper.

The D, anchored by All-Americas safety Landon Collins, backer Trey DePriest, and tackle Jonathan Allen is disruptive, but still shows some fissures protecting against the pass.

In Gainesville, the pressure builds on Muschamp, as Bama takes another step toward its SEC Championship chase.

No.4 Oklahoma at West Virginia (FOX, 7:30 p.m.) “Oklahoma! Where the wind comes sweeping down the plain…” is exactly how its offense has operated, sweeping behind its dynamic QB, Trevor Knight.

The big-armed sniper is assisted by tailbacks; Keith Ford (out ankle), and Samaje Perine, while wideout Sterling Shepard has the elusive touchdown moves of squirrel in the middle of traffic.

The Sooner’s swarming D, featuring All-America backer Eric Striker, end Chuka Ndule, and backer Caleb Gastelum, hits harder than an oil rig worker in a Saturday night saloon brawl on the prairie.

The Mountaineers Mad-Scientist, Coach Dana Holgorsen has been stirring up a surprising early season winning brew.

Gunslinger Clint Trickett is the triggerman of this offensive juggernaut, with assists from tailback Rushel Shell, and a pair of field-stretching receivers: Kevin White, and Mario Alford.

The WV D, featuring backers Nick Kwiatkoski and Brandon Golson, still has more holes than a Big Dig Tunnel, or the tax returns of former Turnpike “on time and on budget” Chairman, Jim Kerasiotes.

In what may well be a Wild West shootout, we think ultimately it will be a Sooner-Boomer night for Mr. Knight.

No. Illinois at Arkansas (ESPNU, 7:00 p.m.) This may not fall into the glamour category of a Hepburn and Tracey, or Liz and Burton, but it still carries a good deal of intrigue.

There are two questions in the lining of this game: How much have the Razorbacks improved in year two under man from Wisconsin Bret Bielema? And can the upstarts from Dekalb, Illinois stir things up in the South?

The Huskies are mushing along with the nation’s longest (17) road game winning streak.

Its lead dog is dual-threat QB Drew Hare, who is assisted by a pair of breakaway backs Cameron Stingily, and Joel Bouagnon, who nicely complement the field-stretching duo: Da’Ron Brown, and Juwan Brescacin.

The Dekalb Debunkers attack behind a relentless D, anchored by backer Rasheen Lemon, and end Jason Meehan, but has some vulnerability defending against the pass.

In his second year in Fayetteville, Coach Bret Bielema’s Hogs are starting to display some prime cuts.

The Sons of Bill Clinton, who run more than Althea Garrison, are directed by sharpshooter Brandon Allen, who has the luxury of leaning heavily on a pair of slippery game breakers: Alex Collins (8.2 yds. carry), and his partner Jonathan Williams (9.8 yds. a carry).

When the Razorback marksman takes to the air, Keon Hatcher, and Demetrius Wilson, are primary targets.

The D, led by tackle Taiwan Johnson, end Trey Flowers, and backers Martrell Spaight, and Brooks Ellis, is operating under its fourth coordinator since December 2011, and despite its lack of depth, is a vastly improved operation.

On Saturday night in Fayetteville it will be a Razorback “Woo, Pig Sooie” for the Sons of Frank Broyles.

Last week: 4-1                                                                       Season record: 12-3

That’s it from cyber-space. We’ll be up and running with our recap by noon Sunday. Until then, Peace, and listen to the music. pk

BC stuns USC, UMass loses another heartbreaker, Duke, Mizzou, Georgia win, backup Jerry Neuheisel rescues UCLA

This is why we love college football!

It was the spirit of the Red Bandanna!!

In a student, field storming shocker, which resonated throughout the college football landscape, a

bunch of scrappy football players from Chestnut Hill stunned its visitors, the “mighty” ninth ranked Trojans of USC; 37-31.

Believe me, NOBODY saw this one coming.

It was the signature victory for BC’s second year coach Steve Addazio, the first victory for an unranked Eagles team against a top ten opponent since 2002 (Notre Dame), and one of the biggest wins in the history of the Boston College program.

But the way, the Sons of Mike Holovak did it, was even more eye-popping.

The Eagles chewed yardage like a Kenyan training camp in the Rift Valley, compiling a jaw-dropping 452 yards of rushing offense, on what was considered an elite defensive squad. OUCH!!!

The star of the game, and undisputed team leader, was QB Tyler Murphy, who garnered 191 of those yards on 13 carries, averaging 14.7 yards a pop, with the coffin nailer, a 66 touchdown scamper with 3:30 left in the game.

If the Eagles ground attack was deserving of its marquee billing, the defense was almost an equal co-star, stifling USC, making it a one dimensional neutral sticking jalopy, allowing the Trojans a miniscule 20 yards on the ground!!

BC literally floated out of the stadium, as its fight song “For Boston” coursed from the locker room.

For USC, a very long plane ride back to the West Coast awaited for a bunch of sullen, dejected, and ultimately defeated Trojans. What a victory for BC!!!

The 2-1 Eagles now find themselves in a great position.

With three winnable contest in the next three weeks, a bowl game invite, something that not even Coach Addazio would have envisioned before the season began, looks as promising as salmon fishing in Alaska.

How do you know you are old?

Answer: when you watch the son of a quarterback, whose father lead UCLA to victory in the 1984 Rose Bowl, throw a winning touchdown pass Saturday night against Texas!! Ouch, age is a wonderful thing!!

In a dramatic ending in Austin, UCLA, without it’s injured All-America, and Heisman candidate QB, Brett Hundley (elbow injury, first quarter), saw Jerry Neuheisel come off the bench and rescue the Bruins throwing a 33 touchdown pass (his second) with three minutes left, to preserve UCLA’s playoff hopes; 20-17.

At game’s end, an ecstatic group of Bruins, along with Coach Jim Mora, hoisted the kid QB on its shoulders, and with his shock of blond sweaty hair bobbing in the breeze, carried him to its sideline.

It was a great scene, and somewhere, daddy Rick, the Rose Bowl winning QB of thirty years ago, must have shed a few tears of joy and pride.

On the darker side, the Charlie Strong era in Texas now rests at 1-2. Yikes!! Sorry Charlie. That can’t sit well with the Horns faithful.

In the biggest game of the day, the ever resilient Steve Spurrier, one of the best the sport has ever seen, captured his 201st SEC victory, a 38-35 thriller over Georgia, tying him with the Bulldogs Vince Dooley for second place all-time.

The Dawgs have been the Head Ball Coach’s foil, as the Cocks have beaten the Bulldogs, four of the last five, and Spurrier holds a 16-6 all-time record against the Bulldogs, surpassing Auburn’s Shug Jordan.

The victory also puts the Gamecocks right back into the SEC East race.

But it was a curious call late in the fourth quarter by Coach Mark Richt that caused a great deal of head-scratching amongst the Athens faithful.

Instead of running the ball from the 6-yard line, with arguably the best player in the nation Todd Gurley, he elected to throw, an intentional grounding penalty, and an ensuing missed chip-shot game tying field goal, and the game was lost. Yikes!!

In Amherst, it was another tortuous loss for the Minutemen who are showing a lot of life under the guidance of their Football “Belle of Amherst” Coach Mark Whipple.

For the second week in a row, UMass saw an 11 point lead evaporate in the fourth quarter, but this 34-31 loss was even tougher to digest.

The Minutemen were on the Vanderbilt 6, with a dozen seconds remaining, when quarterback Blake Frohnapfel overthrew a wide open receiver in the end zone for the game winner.

You guessed it, the extra-point distance game tying field was wide, and UMass trudged off the field in Nashville with another stomach-acid churning loss.

Never one to pull a punch Whipple said simply, “Frohnapfel has to make that throw at the end of the game for a touchdown.” Nothing more need be said.

In Missouri, the Boys from the “Show Me State” are once again quietly putting on a great show led by its scintillating QB Matty Mauk – 4TDs- one of the nation’s best that nobody knows, in its 38-10 destruction over a good UCF squad.

Hail the smart kids as the undefeated Dukies of David Cutcliffe crushed the sorry Kansas Jayhawks of Charlie Weis; 41-3.

Tick, tick, tick!!!

That is the only sound coming from the KU football offices these days as the clock has to be finally winding down on the sorry coaching tenure of the overstuffed, and arrogant Weis, who is a pathetic 5-21 in his tenure on the Lawrence campus.

Sorry Charlie!@!!

It took a triple overtime, but Florida held on to defeat Kentucky: 36-30 for its 28th consecutive victory against the Wildcats. Double Yikes!!   But the Cats are improving.

Finally, kudos to Pitt tailback James Conner, who last week torched BC for 250 yards, then rolled up another 177 yesterday against FIU, for an eye-popping two game total: 427 yards!! Wow!!

For an undistinguished week of games on the card, it turned out to be a blue-ribbon day!!!!

That’s it from cyber-space. We’ll be up and running with our analysis of week 4 on Wednesday night.

Until then, Peace, and listen to the music. pk

Grass head not a winning formula for Michigan State

We begin this week, (the weakest of the year, as witnessed by Game Day heading back to Fargo for the North Dakota State game,) with an Oregon meat commodities trader, and a lot of grass.

Last week before its monster game against Oregon, Michigan State alum Brian Aust of Silverton, Oregon, which is approximately 78 miles northeast of Eugene, took a lawn rake to a field of grass seed, and using a template, scratched out a giant head of a Michigan State Spartan in the middle of the field.

The class of 1988 Animal Science major then had an aerial photo taken by his nephew, who flew a helicopter over the artwork. The picture was tweeted out with the caption:

“Flying into Oregon?”

“Hope your flight pattern takes you over Brian’s property. #GoState.

MSU’s athletic director Mark Hollis saw the picture and invited Aust to the game as his tailgate guest.

The grass-seed field is part of a ‘hobby-farm” said Aust. Despite the artwork, the Spartans went down to defeat at the hands of the mighty Ducks.

This weekend let’s see which team look like they have partaken in too much grass, and which scratch and rake out another victory, laying the seeds for a potential playoff spot.

No.6 Georgia at No.24 South Carolina (CH.4, 3:30 pm)The Dawgs are on the prowl, and showing, as if they belong at Westminster.

The best-in-show sled-leader is its All-America Heisman candidate, and Hershel clone; tailback Todd Gurley.

The Athens dynamo is under the command of its crafty commander, QB Hutson Mason, who has the luxury of choosing from a passel of receivers; led by Michael Bennett and Chris Conley.

The main artery of its improving D is a backer quartet of backers featuring All-America Ramik Wilson, and his talented partner, Amarlo Herrera.

Steve Spurrier’s Cocks are still searching for a game to crow about. [Note: Spurrier became the third coach in SEC history to record at least 200 wins, joining legends Vince Dooley and Bear Bryant with that milestone.]

Poised QB Dylan Thompson directs the Columbia eleven, ably assisted by All-America tailback Mike Davis, and his partner Brandon Wilds.

When the “Tambourine Man” goes aerial, Nick Jones and Pharoh Cooper are lyrical targets.

New York and Westminster had better watch out, a special breed of Dawg is residing in Athens, and it will be showing well in Columbia on Saturday.

Tennessee at No.4 Oklahoma (Ch.5, 8 p.m.) It’s been a long time since Rocky Top has been near the top, but the hiring of Butch Jones is the right step in restoring the Tennessee brand.

The Volunteers are directed by a talented, but oft erratic senior QB, Justin Worley, who is assisted by a pair of orange-clad bruisers; Jalen Hurd and Marlin Lane.

When Worley isn’t playing like Joanne [Laugh-In for you youngsters], wideouts Maquez North, Pig Howard, and Von Pearson (ankle) can test any defense.

The strength of the attacking D is its linebacking corps featuring A.J. Johnson and Curt Maggitt.

In Norman, Coach Bob Stoops, embarking on his 15th season has compiled numbers (88-5 at home) 162-39 overall that even Warren Buffett would admire.

The Norman conquerors are commanded by QB Trevor Knight, who if he continues his stellar play will be welcomed as Sooner royalty.

The QB’s supporting cast is also Round Table worthy, featuring tailbacks; Keith Ford, Alex Ross, Samaje Perine, while the receiving corps is led by one of the nation’s best; Sterling Shepard.

OU’s fuel-injected D returns nine starters, led by All-America backer Eric Striker, his partner Caleb Gastelum (walk-on), and end Chuka Ndule.

Once upon a time, before cable, Laugh-In was must watch TV.

And fifteen years ago this matchup carried the same cache, but now, it is simply be the Boomer Sooner show, and on Saturday night, it should be quite a spectacular.

UCF(Central Florida) at No.20 Missouri (SEC Network, Noon) The Knights playing style is reflective of its owly, gruff, profane, and leather-neck, red-faced tough 68 year old New York City Irishman Coach, George O’Leary.

(A UNH graduate by the way.)

Sophomore QB Justin Holman is expected to be the starter, and the fearless leader will be able assisted by tailbacks; William Stanback, Dontraviouis Wilson, and a trio of receivers; led by Rannel Hall that will stretch any defense.

UCF’s stout intimidating D, employs eight returning starters, anchored by backer Terrance Plummer, and corner Jacoby Glenn.

The Boys from the “Show Me” state’s spread attack has been on full parade display.

Dual-threat QB Maty Mauk is the drum major, with a huge assist from a trio of glue-fingered receivers; Bud Sasser, Darius White, and Jimmie Hunt.

When Mizzou plows the fields, tailback Russell Hansbrough is the principle load carrier.

The D utilizes a pair of disruptive ends, Shane Ray and Marcus Golden, while backer Michael Scherer is a tackling machine.

In what we believe will be a very tight game, the show in Columbia, belongs to Mizzou.

N0.12 UCLA at Texas (FOX, 8 p.m.) Since his arrival onto the Westwood Campus two years ago, Coach Jim Mora has taken UCLA on a ride of Dow Jones proportions.

The big kahuna of the lads from LA is its All-America, and Heisman candidate, QB Brett Hundley.

The Bruins dual-threat maestro is assisted by a trio of field-stretchers; Jordan Payton, Devin Fuller, and Thomas Duarte.

But so far, the UCLAns running attack featuring Paul Perkins, has been as anemic as the Feds case against Jack O’Brien, hamstrung by an ineffective offensive line.

It needs to be corrective quickly if the “other” team from LA is going to be a legitimate playoff contender.

The talented D attacks behind All-America backer/fullback Myles Jack, his partner Eric Kendricks, and nose Kenny Clark.

In cleaning house, newly minted Texas Coach Charlie Strong has sliced off more Texas beef than a cook at a roadhouse rib joint.

Unfortunately, many of these “last men standing” are missing gristle, and have as much experience as Pope Francis at a roulette wheel, or the Mass Gambling Commission with casinos!!!

With the loss of its starter David Ash (concussions – maybe career ending), newbie QB Tyrone Swoops is shakier than a newborn calf.

And with the replacements on the offensive line, the expected powerful run game of Johnathan Gray and Malcom Brown has been immobilized.

It also appears that the D, led by All-America end Cedric Reed, and backers Jordan Hicks, and Steve Edmond, has more holes than a Lady Gaga outfit.

We don’t think it will be a repeat of the ’97 rout 66 game (UCLA 66 Texas 3), but we don’t expect the Horns to emerge victorious, leaving the start of the Strong era a weak 1-2.

Minnesota at TCU (FS1, 4 p.m.) This is the fourth year in what the Gopher faithful lovingly refer to as: Jerrysota.

Minnesota Coach Jerry Kill has designed, and instituted a Frank Lloyd Wright type of building job at the once moribund program.

And in a throwback to the days of Woody Hayes, the Gophers utilize a relentless running attack, while tossing in an occasional pass, the way a chef tosses in a pinch of parsley.

Minnesota’s blue ribbon plough horse in its senior tailback David Cobb, who is averaging an eye-popping 7 yards per carry.

Option QB Mitch Leidner (sprained mcl) oversees the entire offensive operation, and when the Sons of Bruce Smith (’41 Heisman winner) decide to take to the skies, Donovahan Jones, and tight end Maxx Jones, are viable targets.

But the calling card of the Gopher renaissance has been a defense led by backers Damien Wilson, and Jack Lynn, that is harder to penetrate than the night collection box at the Eire Pub.

[Note: When the Gophers have the lead at the half, they are a perfect 16-0 under Coach K.]

TCU’s Coach Gary Patterson is so desperate for some offense, that in the off season he hired a pair of o-coordinators, Doug Meacham, and Sonny Cumbie, to try and infuse some life into these Sons of Davey O’Brien

The Horned Frogs newly installed no huddle attack, will be under the direction of QB Trevone Boykin, with assists from jet-fueled tailback B.J. Catalon, and the hopefully rejuvenated receiving corps; Ty Slanina and David Porter.

But as always, the identity of the Fort Worth program, is a defense that would be the envy of General Motors.

This snarly group attacks with a trio of backers, Marcus Mallett, Paul Dawson, Mike Tuaua, and is boosted by the return of starry end Devonte Fields.

On Saturday, in a close anvil hitting contest, we think it will be a Gopher kill by the Frogs from Fort Worth.

Last week’s record: 4-1                                                                     Season’s record: 8-2.

Be sure to read our recap of week 3 which will be up and running by Sunday at noon. Until then, Peace, and listen to the music.   pk

Ohio State, Michigan State, lose, Michigan crushed, USC wins thriller, Texas embarrassed, Oregon real deal,

Yesterday, the Big Ten Conference sank faster than the Lusitania, and she went to the bottom in a mere 18 minutes!!

Picking through the smoldering embers, when its Glitter Twins, Michigan State, and Ohio State lost within hours of each other, any hopes for a Big Ten Team in the college playoff virtually disappeared.

In addition to the “big boys,” Purdue was crushed by Central Michigan 38-17, Northwestern lost to Northern Illinois 17-13, and Nebraska needed a last second TD to avoid disaster and defeat 1AA McNeese State.

But the topper was Michigan, who was annihilated by Notre Dame; 31-0.

It was the most dominate performance by a team in the history of the series, which stands, and may stand forever at: 26-16-1 for Mighty Meeechign.

In addition to suffering its first whitewash between the two legendary programs, it was the first time Michigan failed to score a point in a game in 376 contests, which dates back to Ronald Reagan in 1984.

Double Yikes!!!

We think it is time for Coach Brady Hoke to do some serious resume polishing, and we are not alone. There is a great deal of grumbling amongst its influential alums.

Where’s Lloyd Carr when you need him? Or even, dare I say, Rich Rod?!!

Sadly, Notre Dame decided to pull the plug on this great rivalry, one in which Hoke said the Irish were “chickening out,” and one in which Irish Coach Brian Kelly said was a “regional game.”

Yeah, it is so regional that is why ESPN televised it in prime time on Saturday Night. PLEASE!!!

And on an historical note Notre dame’s first “Football” game took place against Michigan on November 23, 1887.

It is reported that Michigan came down to visit South Bend and teach the Catholics how to play football.

I wonder how Touchdown Jesus, or Knute, or Ara, feels about the lads pulling the plug??

In the game of the day, Oregon was able to edge away late in its battle against a tough, resilient group of Spartans, as Heisman contender Marcus Mariota was magnificent, leading the Ducks to 28 unanswered points in its; 46-27 win over Michigan State.

The win snapped the Spartans 11-game winning streak, and catapulted Oregon into a prime playoff position.

In the Horseshoe in Columbus there were no ringers for the Buckeye Faithful, as the largest crowd in Ohio Stadium 107,517 watched as Virginia Tech knocked off the Bucks 35-21.

The growing pains were evident for Buckeyes QB J.T. Barnett, who in fairness played tough against a Prime Rib bunch of VaTech Hokies.

Unfortunately, the newbie had little support from his supporting cast, which included a dropped game tying TD pass late in the second quarter.

This may be Coach Frank Beamer’s (226-109-2) best squad in several years, as Texas Tech graduate, QB Michael Brewer, provided a certain leadership that has been missing in the last few years in Blacksburg.

It also showed that VaTech may have a great deal to say about the dynamics of the ACC Conference race.

In Austin, with apologies the “WHO” it was more of “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”

The Horns 41-7 beat-down by BYU, its second consecutive shellacking by the Cougars was UT’s second worst home loss since the infamous rout 66 game: the 66-3 bust out against UCLA in 1997. OUCH!!

Somehow, even though he lost all his Texas memorabilia in a house fire in North Carolina, we think Mack Brown might just have a smile on his face.

On the local front, it was a much more spirited bunch of Minutemen, who held an 11 point second half lead on its bigger brethren of Colorado, but the D couldn’t hold the lead, falling: 41-38 to the Buffs.

On the Heights it may be a long season for Coach Steve Addazio’s chargers, who were run over by the Panthers of Pitt: 30-20.

The Sons of Dan Marino ran for over 300 yards on the Eagles, but more disturbing was the lack of protection by the BC offensive line.

I don’t want to say it was porous, but it made the Big Dig Tunnel look like the drought in California!! YIKES!!

QB Tyler Murphy must improve his passing if BC is to have any chance of scrapping out six victories.

Clemson puts up 73, and Arkansas snaps a 10 game losing streak by also hanging a 73!!

Please stop the nonsense. No more of these meaningless exhibitions.

The fans don’t want them and it only hurts the sport. Enough!!!

And finally, in an old fashioned to quote Keith Jackson, “slobber-knocker” USC took, and gave, snapping Stanford’s 17 game home winning streak in a thrilling; 13-10 victory over the Cardinal.

It showed the college football world that a low scoring game is indubitably more interesting than a 52-50 “football” game. To paraphrase Casey Stengel, “Can anyone here play defense?”

Fight on!!

That’s it from cyber-space. We’ll be up and running with our analysis of week 3 Wednesday night.

 

Until then, Peace, and listen to the music. pk