Livin’ La Vida Loca (or, NCAA Football, Week 8)

BCS begins.

Hard to believe we’ve reached Week 8, but the Thursday night entertainment certainly brought it home to the few lucky viewers who were tuned to the UCLA-Arizona game rather than the Series.

I mean, if you’re going to pretend you’re a referee, blow a whistle, and run onto the field behind the offensive line, it doesn’t make sense unless you also head for the end zone at a trot, removing your outer garments.

The truly interesting thing, however, is the melee that ensued, for no apparent reason, between the Bruin and Wildcat players.  Well, watch both videos.  The fans were going wild for Faux Ref Guy in the second one.

Just to get another pre-Saturday game out of the way up front, #11 West Virginia should have no trouble with Syracuse tonight.

Speaking of rankings, we’re basically OK with the first BCS product, although we think Clemson is ranked way too high.  Stanford is definitely better than Clemson.  OK-State is possibly (probably?) ranked a titch high.  Boise State and Wisconsin are possibly/probably both better.  Let the disputing commence.

Now, on to Tulsa, Notre Dame-slayer, which heads to Houston tomorrow to take on C-USA West Division rival Rice.  The Golden Hurricane is giving about 10, which sounds right.  With a healthy G.J. Kinne, they’ll probably cover and more.  TU, at 3-3, will need to defeat both Houston and SMU to pull out a division title this season; we say don’t count the Golden H out.  They beat Notre Dame last year, after all.  But beating Rice comes first.

#3 OU hosts Texas Tech, a sometime Big 12/BCS-buster and Sooner nemesis, on Saturday evening.  The Sooners should roll over the Red Raiders pretty handily, especially playing in Norman.  But Sooner fans shouldn’t neglect to provide rhetorical support during the game.  Tech has pulled a fast one before.  Isolated thunderstorms, with lightning and wind, will infest game day.

#6 OK-State heads to Missouri for a game the Cowboys had better be up for.  The Tigers aren’t as good as the Cowboys, but they can put some offense together and stun OSU fast out of the gate.  Watch your six, Pokes.  Justify that 7 point give.

Navy hosts a struggling East Carolina, and even after some tough losses is giving 11 to the Purple Pirates.  Army is at Vanderbilt, with the Commodores giving another 11.  We think Army will cover (perhaps due to an extra spurt of energy from mistaking the Commodores for a seagoing opponent).  Chair Force will suffer in its appointed turn on the Blue Field of Death, where #5 Boise State is giving 30.  Which sounds low to us.

#16 VA Tech is heaving 21 at Boston College, which comes to Blacksburg at 1-5 in a worsening down year. As long as the Hokies minimize the self-foot-shooting, penalty- and turnover-wise, they should cover.  Ridiculously glorious football weather is scheduled for Saturday, 62 and sunny at kickoff.

The Nevada Wolf Pack should have equally excellent game weather hosting Fresno State, with a dome of high pressure perched over the West and 76F at game time.  Nevada gives 11, and for good reason.  The Bulldogs are pretty sad this year.

Startlingly, the Golden Bears of Cal are giving points – if no more than 2 – in their Saturday match with the Youths of Utah.  We’re not so sure about that.  The Youths knocked off Pitt last week, after all.  And Cal sucks.

Meanwhile, we just want to say up front that we think #19 Auburn has a shot against #1 LSU.  Auburn comes in with its own issues, such as Latent Quarterback Identification Deficiency, but LSU will be without Mathieu and Simon on D, and yard-maker Spencer Ware on O.  Of course, LSU will be on guard in the replay of the Tiger-off that went Auburn’s way in 2010.  LSU gives 21, and we predict Auburn will cover.

#2 Alabama should crush Tennessee, however.  In other games of note, the pathetic Golden Gophers host #13 Nebraska’s next Big 10 test, and are sure to drop another one.  Michigan State, coming off a win over Michigan, hosts #4 Wisconsin.  We don’t expect the Badgers to have much trouble in that one.  Penn State gives 4 in the Nittally Lions’ annual classic with Northwestern.  #7 Stanford hosts the Washington Huskies, which have weirdly and unjustifiably climbed to #22 in the BCS after beating five middling-to-rotten teams and losing to Nebraska.  The Rose Petal, giving 20, should send the Huskies back south of 25 where they belong.

In Div II, the SWOSU Bulldogs travel to Searcy, Arkansas to meet the Harding University Bison, who come in 2-5 to the Bulldogs’ 4-3.  The Bison aren’t much on the gridiron, but their alumni include NFL linebacker “Tank” Daniels and former special prosecutor Kenneth Starr.

NWOSU hosts perennial powerhouse Langston U (Langston, OK) in Alva on Saturday.  The 5-2 Lions will give the Rangers a tough conference match.

In Div III, Rose-Hulman heads for Mennonite Bluffton University (Bluffton, OH) on Saturday, and should have a good shot with the 3-3 Beavers, who have lost to both Franklin and Mt St. Joe.

Christopher Newport hosts North Carolina Wesleyan for homecoming in Newport News Saturday evening.  The North Carolina Wesleyan squad rejoices in the name Battling Bishops, and at 2-4 has already lost to one of our all-time favorite schools, Ferrum College of Ferrum, Virginia, southwest of Rocky Mount (where we note that the Dyer family, to which there is every possibility we are related, dedicated a new residence hall just this past month).  Ferrum is not a useful place to look for a public restroom when you’re on the road, but it has many other charms.  Go Captains!

28 thoughts on “Livin’ La Vida Loca (or, NCAA Football, Week 8)”

  1. I watched till 28-7 point. It was better than a sleeping pill. Enjoyed listening to folks talking about how great Arizona was playing without Stoops.
    I remember a few weeks ago folks were talking about how good Texas was because they beat the Bruins so handily.
    The UCLA coach is 8 games below .500. Hello?
    Langston seems to have a problem evaluating tailbacks. Snark Snark.
    Sounds like you need to touch bases with the eastern Dyers. They seem to be throwing around a lot of money. ( I have some green energy ideas. We take the money and run.)
    My men and I would be perfectly at in Ferrum when we are working. One has to learn how to style it.

  2. I think OSU had really better watch out – this smells like problem. I am having a problem believing we are going to have 4 or 5 undefeated teams.

    I don’t think Auburn has a prayer at all – their win over S Carolina was pretty lucky, and they won’t have enough this weekend.

    Big Ten – I think MSUs defense can slow Wisocnisn down a little bit but not enough. Wisconsin really impresses me. I think in the end it is an easy win.

    Penn State had better be awake against NW, though I am not sure NW can stop anyone, even an offense as poor as PSU. Nebraska rolls. Iowa’s turn to beat up IU and I normally wouold say Illinois wipes out Purdue, but after losing against a team that that completed one – just one pass – I think Purdue could surprise some people – and the Illini, who if they win may not cover.

    I do like Clemson and also like Ga Tech to continue falling back to earth as the U makes them taste defeat again, leaving the ACC completely in Clemson’s control.

    Out west – I think Washington is the new over-ranked thing. Stanford in a rout.

    1. Probably should have clarified – I know the U and Ga Tech are in different conferences – but two straight losses by Ga Tech and I think they are no longer very confident, nor will their fans be very happy. I think that makes them easy pickings when they and Clemson meet – better to play at GT in fact – in the next week.

      1. Dumb ACC NitPick… Divisions.. and Jaw-juh Teck and Miama are both in the Coastal Division… Clemson is in the Atlantic Division…

        A win for the U means that The Hokies will be the odds on favorite, short of a total collapse… of winning the ACC Coastal (Something one always hopes for, but given the no-expectations year, is way above the booger bowl shot I thought we were going to get…) A Hokie even hinting at rooting or even hoping for a ‘Canes victory is bad for football karma… so I will put it out of my mind.

        Of course Clemson is looking like it will walk away with the Atlantic, and the “Dr. Pepper” Bowl in Charlotte is going to see another very Orange year. Given that Frank and Bud don’t often lose to the same team twice in a year… well.. Clemson isn’t likely to see a mere 3 from Tech’s offense, and Bud Foster’s Defense has only gotten better since holding Tajh Boyd his lowest performance numbers to date.

        Of course Virginia Tech still has to win.. UNC, GT, and Virginia are not going to be pushover football games.

        Meanwhile… we are back in Newport News to attend the Homecoming/Family weekend festivities at CNU. A report as seen from the front row of the 40… will be forthcoming Sunday evening.


  3. No need to concern self with OSU ranking b.c. they will have a chance to validate it. ( If they beat OU then they will have a much better win the Wisky or Boise and the ranking will have been justified, if they loose the current ranking will avail them nichts.

    They have won relatively difficult games v. TAMU and Texas whereas Wisky and Boise (the Georgia win looks better but this is deceptive b.c. Georgia is a much better team now than they were at the beginning of the season: very different from Oregon which was immediately awesome against everyone except LSU) have done nothing heretofore.
    That said Wisky looks very good and I’m inclined to believe they will have an easier time against MSU than their D numbers would suggest.

    I don’t think you can every be comfortable giving LSU 21 v. Auburn but they have been iffy this year and lived very dangerously even last year. LSU is the better team and I’d give the 2 TD without further though.

    Bama/Tennessee being relegated to a regional game is very sad. The ghost of General Nyland is not well pleased. Let’s hope they get back soon.

    Incidentally (this would have been more appropriate last week, of course), possibly the most exciting sporting experience of my life was going to an LSU/Tennessee game at Nyland. My college roommate was from Knoxville and we went their for the weekend specifically for this game. This was during the early Fulmer revival (but before Payton) and LSU really sucked but the atmosphere was absolutely amazing. Even under those circumstances a whole bunch of LSU fans had come and our interactions was every bit as colorful as you could expect

  4. I wouldn’t be so dismissive of Fresno State. They are 3-4 overall and 2-0 in the WAC. (OK, not exactly a power conference.) Last year, a pretty good Wolf Pack was lucky to escape with a one point win in Fresno. This year’s Nevada team is nowhere near that level offensively. But, the home field advantage ought to suffice for a win if the Wolf Pack can keep from shooting its pedal extremities with turnovers and big lapses on defense.

  5. Please forgive me here for going off topic. I know that I should be commenting on cfb (a couple of upsets in the making I see).

    fuster, are you out there? Remember that discussion we had about the Declaration of Independence and how it says We hold these truths as “self-evident,” as opposed to the original “sacred?” Apparently Benjamin Franklin thought “sacred” was too religiously implicit and suggested that “sacred” be replaced by “self-evident.” I tried to find on youtube for you the clip from the John Adams series that shows Franklin, Adams and Jefferson discussing Jefferson’s rough draft of the Declaration, but to no avail.

    Anyway, HBO now has an online version of “on demand.” If you have HBO, you can log onto and sign up (for free) and have online access to just about any movie or show from HBO. If you sign up, go to the 2nd episode of the John Adams series….

    Go to about the 1 hour mark of the episode. That’s the scene I was referring to.

  6. This just in: Yale 20 Penn 13.
    Two not PC comments. A white pre-med receiver from Modlothian,Va. (Yale) just out ran a black corner from Penn. How embarrassing for the corner.
    Previous touchdown for Penn: white receiver, white safety. When the play began, I prepared a sandwich and grabbed a brewski just in time to see them cross the goal line. Einstein was right. Time does slow down with sloth like skill players.
    Looks like about 2000 folks in the stadium. I guess the students are busy at Wall Street or something. Playing at Penn.
    J.E. where are you today?
    Okay back to OSU/Missouri.

    1. 100 years ago Penn/Yale would have been like LSU/Alabama. ‘Corse Ike was still a senior at West Point.

        1. I guess I’m just not as “jet-setty” as you Sooners. i figured a trip to the coast would last a full week rather than be just week-ender.

  7. Speaking of LSU. The upset special this week. Herbstreit said it would be tight. Chuck Todd actually took Auburn. Even our own OC didn’t think they would cover. I myself though there was a danger of a close game.

    42-3. 7:27 left in 3rd quarter.

  8. Newport News, VA — Well.. Back at the hotel… after a really great Christopher Newport Homecoming victory against North Carolina Wesleyan. Even the Captain’s defense got in on the scoring opportunities by picking up a fumble in the 4th quarter, just as NCW was about to prove that the CNU prevent offense was, indeed a really bad idea…

    This event lit up the CNU offense, maybe a little wound to the old pride was a good thing… Too often this season the offense has gone catatonic during the 3rd and early 4th quarters to lose big leads. Not this evening…

    The score: CNU Captains 51, NC Wesleyan Bishops 33 (7 of which were in the last minute of the game garbage time.)

    As to the fate of my beloved Hokies… well the score was 30-7 Tech over BC, the real score was 37 to 7 but Frank WILL NOT run up the score, so the last plays of the game were “get the first down, then take three knees sorts of affairs… I think that Beamer refuses to cover the spread on purpose… just to make the sports writers sick.

    Georgia Tech fell to Miami (says hoping not to disturb the Football Karma Continuum)

    Sparty beat Wisconsin which leaves room in the top 10 (not that Tech is getting there but it sure makes the to 10 a good bit less easy to vote on..)

    And in news that will send serious chagrin to TOC HQ, Texas Tech is kicking Oklahoma’s tush… no guarantee in a “no defense” situation… but if TT knocks off Oklahoma, and now that Wisconsin has had one of Buckey’s teeth pulled.. well… things are going to get right silly at the sports book… um I mean polls…


  9. OU (for two years now) has shown immaturity with their up and down attitude toward opponents they don’t respect.
    This has been floating in the air this year. Poor effort against Missouri-Kansas-T-Tech. It caught up with them. Tech with much less talent came to play. Brought confidence and attitude. My hat is off to them.
    OU richly deserves what it got. At home no less. The entitlement thing is alive in the OU locker room. Sports talk around OKC on Monday will be full of venom. Should be a lot of fun.
    No one should hang their head in the Wisconsin/Michigan State game. That was all out, maximum effort game. WOW!!!!!!
    Let me get the first bumper sticker out there before the chat begins. OU/Boise State rematch.

  10. For the pro football fans from Indiana, it looks like the Colts, with two minutes left, are gonna fall a bit short of catching the Saints.

  11. Tough weekend for football. Yes, Mom was still here on Saturday, and although we had a full viewing experience with OSU-Mizzou and East Carolina-Navy, we caught only the first hour or so of Tulsa-Rice, and didn’t see TT-OU at all. The latter of which turned out to be a blessing. ESPNU ran the OU game again on Sunday, because they’re sadists, but I hadn’t the heart to spend much time with it.

    (A friend of mine was having a birthday party, and our Saturday evening was dedicated to that. Very nice time with some great people. Mom left on Sunday morning from the Ontario airport, which is an absolute ghost town these days. It’s incredible how the traffic has declined there. It’s a major airport, with international flights and constant cargo throughput, but it reminded me of the Stephen King novel/flick The Langoliers these past two weekends, ifyaknowwhuddamean.)

    We will admit it, Nevada didn’t cover. A pretty evenly distributed scoring fest, but the Pack came out on the long end, 45-38. Hokies pecked and clawed the Eagles into a coma.

    Painful ending for Navy after a gallant comeback. Army pretty much whomped by Vandy.

    We do note that Cal trounced the Youths 34-10. Shall we say, “unexpectedly.” The Battle of the Bears is next week, and it’s hard to know which of Cal or UCLA to crown “Least Likely to Win.” But we’ll go with the Bruins for now.

    LSU way more than covered, and it appears to our eyes that the offense is gaining depth as the season develops. Hard not to see the Tigers as BCS champs right now. The Tide didn’t look as dominating over a worthless Vol squad.

    The surprise of the week, for nous, was the Michigan State win. We figured on Wisconsin to cover. Penn State upended Northwestern 34-24. Stanford did clobber the (UW) Huskies, but let them score 21 points. The Stanford D could stand to add some speed. Boise State didn’t beat Chair Force by as much as expected. The Broncos can be stopped.

    We agree with wreed’s diagnosis that the Sooners just don’t “bring it” for every game, and we’d like to chase them around a closet with a tire-iron for that. I think the world of Bob Stoops, but that’s coaching, that is. Bedlam will be very, very interesting this year. I don’t know if OU will meet BSU again; the Sooners might well be a Big 12 also-ran, and wind up in the Bridegepoint Education Holiday Bowl or something.

    The (OSU) Cowboys could stand to add some consistency, and I’d really like to see them mixing it up with the run more. But they do belong in the Top 10, and definitely outperformed OU this week.

    We note, for C-USA fans, that Southern Miss knocked off SMU (SMU!), which definitely helps Tulsa out.

    Anybody see Purdue bounce Illinois? We weren’t getting that one here. Purdue hasn’t been chopped liver this year. Seems like the Illini have to fade from the Top 25.

    Missed the tip on WVA and Syracuse too. Wow, the Mountaineers looked weak and disorganized for that one. 49-23. Go figure.

    We are sorry to report that Rose-Hulman lost to Bluffton and falls to 3-4 on the season. But as TMF reports, CNU beat the Battling Bishops 51-33 for a most satisfying homecoming. The 5-2 Captains are currently on top in the USA South conference, followed by (wait for it) the Panthers of Ferrum College. Both are 5-2 overall, 4-0 conference. The Captains will play in Ferrum on 5 November, and we just hope TMF & Co are able to be there.

    Sadly, in Div II, SWOSU lost to Harding, and by a lot. 70-28. Wow. NWOSU gave Langston a run for their money, but lost a nailbiter 42-39. The UCO Bronchos have continued their losing streak, falling to the Washburn Ichabods (you can’t make this stuff up) 48-3 on the 15th, and to the Fort Hays State Tigers 38-21 on the 22nd.

    In the low-class dance hall downstairs, USC “defeated” Notre Dame 31-17. What. Ever.

    1. it’s not a rarity in most places, and buying tickets is no longer necessary, though using some sort of paper is considered appropriate. ( cobs no longer fashionable !)

      1. One, in good taste, may be permitted to pass a cob in a two holer under certain circumstances.
        1. The only paper available is too smooth (Sears)
        2. There is only enough suitable paper for one, the paper has been properly folded and the second person is dilatory.
        (Tie goes to the runner)

  12. Some one with diarrhea (the trots, the runs) and, consequently, an inflamed and sensitive bottom, may be allowed the use of a small piece of smooth silk.

    THAT is the meaning, in this case, of the aphorism…tie goes to the runner.

    1. I am a Tarheel native. We reserve small pieces of silk for securing important commodities (like Sharon Stone).
      I am afraid in the hinter lands silk is not readily available inside the out. I suppose one must come prepared.
      I wonder who will go with the scratch and sniff comment and get both of us thrown off the blog. Taken to the outhouse as it were.
      We could go next to the slit trench motif.
      You have the last word my friend. Make it a dandy.

  13. Well, this WAS about football.

    So, who didn’t expect the Jags to come through in that silly MNF game?

    1. OU played like Cal Saturday night. Pretend smarty pants football players are THE worst.
      Okay Kansas State. If we are just looking on paper K-State has very little after the first 22.
      They are just like Oklahoma during Bobs’ 2nd year (2000). Scrappy, attitude, bad mood, and mean. However, the linebacker QB really can’t throw the ball.
      Look for OU to take it in the mouth for a while. Talent will finally win unless the team has quite. They have it written all over them. Sissies.
      I can think of many scatological adjectives concerning this team. Especially the kickers.
      Just for conversation. T-Tech is 5 points from being un-defeated and 3 points the other way from being a sub 500 team. Effort is everything.
      I love football.

  14. Well, there you go. But yes, the Red Raiders have made the most of effective but not overpowering scoring. The Sooners could have given up dozens of points altogether and still achieved the same thing they have to date. Idiots.

    I suppose this week they’ll thrash Kansas State around the field in a paroxysm of atonement. BCS don’t do atonement, unless you’re some weirdly favored team like Clemson or UConn, which the Sooners never are. (The BCS has had a lengthy crush on Ohio State too, for some indiscernible reason.)

    Much to opine on for Saturday. Next NCAA football post.

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