Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | September 6, 2013

Football Follies: NCAA Football 2013 – Week 2

So… who saw that seven-TD night coming for Peyton Manning?  I certainly didn’t see the Bronco romp coming.  Wowsers.  The NFL season launches with a bang instead of a thud.

Tulsa hosts Colorado State on Saturday evening, which raises the indelicate question of FBS football in the state of Colorado.  Man, those guys have some challenges.  We’re guessing they held their intra-state rivalry classic, the Rocky Mountain Showdown, as a season opener last week in the hope that no one would notice.  Colorado State lost the Centennial Cup to Colorado; even coming off an ignominious loss to Bowling Green, Tulsa gives 10 as we count down to the 6 PM (CDT) kickoff in Chapman Stadium.

Don’t get cocky, Hurricane.  You could fall overboard in this one too.  Happily, this game will be on CBS Sports Network in the TOC viewing area, so we at your Football Commentary Service can form an eyes-on impression of where the squad needs work.

Oklahoma, #16, hosts West Virginia on Saturday, and no giggling from the gallery, please.  Someone industrious confirmed my impression from the WVU game last week that the Mountaineers made no more than two tackles for loss in the entire game.  The Wm & Mary QB mostly had his leisure in the pocket, boding well for the youthful Trevor Knight.  Should get to see the Norman game here.

Oklahoma State, #13, will be down in Texas again, this time visiting a spanking new C-USA accession from the FCS ranks: UT-San Antonio (UTSA).  The Cowboys should get some good drill out of it, at least.  We wish, just for this weekend, that the OK-State nickname were the Coyotes, since of course UTSA fields the Roadrunners.  Pokes give 26.

Navy kicks off the Midshipmen’s season at Indiana on Saturday evening, with the Hoosiers giving about 12.  Interesting, considering the 73-35 drubbing the Hoosiers administered to Indiana State on the 29th.  Navy QB Keenan Reynolds, second-year starter, is iffy for game completion, coming off a shoulder injury, and corner Kwazel Bertrand’s knee injury is a tough loss for the D, so Coach Niumatalolo (Indian name: “Needs a Nickname”) has his work cut out for him.  Army is at Ball State, facing a Cardinal squad that beat Illinois State 51-28 last week, and yet only gives 7 this week.  The Indiana bettors don’t seem to be a very lively lot.

The Hokies breathe a sigh of relief as they take the home field at Blacksburg against one of our all-time favorite teams, the Western Carolina Catamounts (FCS, Southern Conference).  The Catamounts lost badly to Middle Tennessee last week; VT give is 42, and that’s probably about right.  Just don’t get sloppy, Hokies.


Nevada learned a lot playing UCLA, and should fare well hosting UC-Davis (FCS, Big Sky) on Saturday evening.  The UC-Davis Aggies managed to lose to South Dakota in Week 1, which takes some doing.  Wolf Pack gives 17, and we say take all the points you can get.

#24 TCU will host Southeastern Louisiana (FCS, Southland), giving a miserly 42.  Sure, the Lions downed Southeast Missouri State 45-7 last week, but, well, that was Southeast Missouri State.  (The redoubtable SEMSU Redhawks, FCS/Ohio Valley, take on Ole Miss this week, incidentally, so you’ve got to hand it to them: they show up for punishment.)  Horned Frogs should hop through this one smartly.

In the Top 10, the #1 Tide has the week off to recover from the opener with the Hokies, and prepare for Texas A&M next week.  AP has Oregon at #2, although we prefer Ohio State; in any case, O-Ducks will hit the field against the Yahoos of Virginia for the first time ever on Saturday afternoon, in Charlottesville.  Duck give is 23.  They should live up to it, but watch for the trademark late start by the perennially first-quarter-challenged AFLACs.

Buckeyes give 28 hosting San Diego State; Aztecs may surprise on the point spread, but no more than that.  #4 Clemson gives an insane 59 hosting South Carolina State (FCS, Mid-East Athletic); if it were truly “insane” I wouldn’t italicize it, of course.  Stanford launches the Candy Pink season at #5, hosting San Jose State and giving 25.  #11 Georgia vies again for game of the week, hosting #6 South Carolina (motto: “The Other USC”) with a 3-point give for the ‘Dogs.  Not that surprising, considering the Gamecocks’ lackluster start last week, but you go, Bulldog Nation.

#7 Texas A&M meets the Sam Houston State Bearkats (FCS, Southland), giving a measly 38 due to Sam Houston State’s wild 74-0 rumpus over Houston Baptist last week.  #8 Louisville hosts Eastern Kentucky, giving 41; #9 LSU hosts C-USA’s U-Alabama Birmingham (give: 34); #10 Florida State has a week off, but will meet Nevada on the 14th.

Other games of note:  In the Used-to-Be-a-Classic category, #14 Notre Dame heads to Michigan, which gives a tepid 4 (and that may not be justified).  #12 Florida will be at Miami (Da U) for their annual rivalry game, with another moderate give (Gators, 3) in the mix.  #15 Texas will be up at BYU giving 7, and we understand #25 USC is playing someone, but we don’t care.  (#18 UCLA has the week off, but will be at #22 Nebraska next week for what could be a good game.)

If you’ve got control of the remote tonight, you can catch Wake Forest at Boston College, and a C-USA match-up between Florida International and Central Florida.

In Div III, the Rose-Hulman Fightin’ Engineers take the field at Kalamazoo at 1 PM Saturday, to kick off the 2013 season with one of their two non-conference games.  Kalamazoo’s Hornets play in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association and, like Rose-Hulman, went 5-5 in 2012.  Should be a relatively evenly matched contest.  Weather: 86 and partly cloudy at game time.

Christopher Newport will open the season out of conference as well, visiting Salisbury University in Salisbury, MD.  Salisbury’s Sea Gulls aren’t half bad; playing in the Capital Athletic Conference, they downed CNU 40-16 in their first game last year, and were 9-3 (6-1 conference) in all of 2012, taking the conference and making it to the second round of the Div III regionals.  Mid-70s and clear at kickoff.  Good luck to the Captains.

In other action, Deer Creek High’s Antlers (Edmond, OK) visit Piedmont for their first regular-season game tonight.  Deer Creek clocks in as the 2012 District SA2 Champs.  Putnam City The Original’s Pirates, TOC alma mater in northwest Oklahoma City, open the season against Putnam City North, alma mater of siblings.  Go everybody (except Piedmont)!



  1. I am waiting for my Fightin’ Illini to become relevant again at some point. Cincy comes to Champaign – Urbana after destroying Purdue and only give 7.5 points to my Illini that barely beat Southern Illinois last week.

    I don’t gamble on college football – but if I was going to start taking Cincy and laying the points looks mighty fine.

    Maybe next year I will have a reason to be excited.

    • I feel you, JEM. Sooner fans consider OU irrelevant when they’re below #10 in the polling. Guess it hasn’t been quite as long for them as for the Illini, since their most recent date of relevance. 🙂

      It has been for my Dallas Cowboys, of course. A Cowboy fan is equipped to feel just about anyone’s pain these days.

      • And of course they show me why I don’t bet!

        I-N-I !!!

        My goodness. Reality probably shows up nest week, but I will take it while I can. Also gives me hope we can win at least one game in the conference this year.

        • Thought you’d like that one, JEM.

  2. Keep your eyes on LSU which a lot of freshmen starting their first game on defense last week vs. TCU.

    Note that while LSU’s QB was only 50% in the stats, his throws were all accurate, out of reach of defenders (who enjoyed being able to grab receivers waistband on almost every single pass play before the ball arrived). Their running game was not up to what they have been like for the last decade, but the back situation will work itself out in time for SEC play.

  3. Whoopee and golly gee !
    West Virginia: Yum Yum Eatum Up!
    The play by play guy for WV was on the Sports Animal this morning. He sounded very excited to be in Norman.
    He stated that having to come from behind in the 4th ( at home) to beat a 3-7 William and Mary team was a good win!!!!!!!!!!!!
    He could work for the White House!!!! It wasn’t West Virginia coming from behind, it was the world. LOL !
    Okay, Linebacker info tomorrow or why is the new 3-3-5 just like the 5-2 Gary Gibbs ran for 15 years?
    Hint: There is no difference.

    • Heh. 🙂

      • Striker is a linebacker(Defensive End) that lines up on strong side (TE), two tackles and nose guard, safety on weakside line.
        Two line backers (Mike/Will), 3 corners and a strong safety to come over the top.
        It is a 5-2 from yesteryear and works just fine. I am glad Mike invented the 3-3-5.
        This is the first year Bob has had a linebackers coach for quite a while.
        Rejoice in the linebacker renaissance. Have no fear. Looks like Bob has watched a few Alabama games.
        The Midwest City 3 ,Edmond Santa Fe 0 was a barn burner. QB was out for Santa Fe. He has committed to OU.
        PCO crushed PCN 34-6.

        • Saw the PC-PCN score. Tee hee.

          Deer Creek slew Piedmont 35-3. Nice opening weekend for partisans.

  4. The only problem the Hokies are going to have this weekend is ticket sales… The AD’s PR gang is out begging alums to buy open tickets…

    Season ticket sales are flagging, and you can see the little bits and pieces of a slowly disintegrating program dropping off and blowing away.

    The House that Frank Built needs a rehab… full top to bottom This Old House treatment… where are Steve, Norm, Tony and the crew when you really need them?

    The Western Carolina game is one that should never have been on the schedule, next week is a more appropriate ramp up East Carolina.

    Game is webcast on ESPN3 at 1330 hours EDT.

    Not that too many people are going to be watching… Which is why it’s on the computer to begin with.

    Score not worth the odds… stupid schedule move #1 Alabama for game 1, and #2 unknown rotten cupcake [name inserted here]


    • Well, yeah. I think a lot of it has to be that folks are poor now. At a school with a huge mega-football program, it will take longer for the economy to bite hard on ticket sales.

      Seems funny to think of VT in Blacksburg not being quite in the mega-football category, but there is a difference. Think Alabama, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Texas, Oregon, USC, LSU, Florida. Rabid, insane fans — fans who can drive the odds, against reason and sanity, through the sheer volume of their betting.

      Alums and fans whose financial planning is built around being able to attend football games in the fall. Teams whose migrating fan base changes the local population significantly for a weekend when it shows up to take over RV parks and hotels. Teams that have 80-100,000-seat stadiums, and still have waiting lists and hierarchies for season and game tickets.

      Even these schools are probably starting to feel the pinch. But it will take longer to show visible effects than it does with the next tier football schools like VT.

  5. So, is it pathetic that it took OK-State 5 minutes to score the first TD?

    • Sure enough: it was pathetic. Cowboys allow UTSA to waltz down the field for a TD. Unbelievable: tied 7-all in the Alamo Dome.

  6. OK, so UTSA isn’t chopped liver. OSU could still stop shooting itself in the foot with missed assignments and penalties.

    One of these plays, the OSU defenders are going to collide, leaping at each other from 10 feet on either side of the receiver. Do they call it man-zone coverage, or zone-man?

  7. Unranked Miami just got a big pick deep in their own territory. They are up by 5 over #12 FL with less than 6 mins to go. But 3 and out. Time to punt..

  8. TD Miami, following a fumble recovery a few plays earlier, deep in FL territory. 21-9 with 3:29 to go. Looks like that #12 ranking for FL is going to take a hit.

    • Hey, how about that, huh? I used to pretty much hate Miami, but their Evil Empire days are long in the past now. Doesn’t even hurt to see them sneaking around nabbing Florida from behind.

  9. Alabama taking the weekend off . I wonder what they have in mind for Little
    John John.
    UTSA puts 35 on OSU?
    The shorthorn stench still permeates the Gators.
    Will The Ole Ball Coach do it to the Dogs again? Luv that guy!
    Well, I have to fluff up my coonskin cap scalping tool.

    • SI reporting NCAA to release major violations regarding Former Coaches and Boosters at OSU. Money and sex seem to be the culprits.
      Drugs and rock n roll were not mentioned.
      Joe DeForest was named.
      No current players or coaches are named.

      • You would think Boone’s employees would show a little more respect.
        Sorry, I couldn’t help it.

  10. No coonskin caps on the top of old Bob, at least. Sooners and Mountaineers making this one exciting from the get-go. Sooners not impressing me otherwise. Clearly they need to settle down.

    • They look like crap on both sides of the ball.

  11. Yep, Sooners definitely SO not impressing me. WVU draws first blood. Sooner D too busy counting linebackers on their fingers?

    • LOL !!!! Nice Jab !!!!!!

      • Knight’s throwing mechanics look like Daphne.

  12. General impression from the first half of the Tulsa game: Colorado State reviewed game video of Tulsa. Tulsa did not look at game video of Colorado State. Hence the 20-14 CSU score. Could do without the stupid mistakes. (Really, guys? Losing a 15-yard run to an illegal formation penalty?)

    Tulsa tackling execution does look good, although there’s kind of a head-snap, “Whoa, that dude’s coming at me with the ball!” vibe.

    Puppy sure is cute.

    Down the road in Norman, OU D shutting down the run pretty well. Off step too often in the secondary. Way too many little mistakes on offense. Knight lacking judgment on when, where to throw. Ugghh.

  13. Navy up 41-28 on Indiana deep in the 4Q. Nice.

    Texas on the wrong end of 0-3 at BYU. Just a few minutes in. Have to assume that will change.

    A&M has let Sam Houston State score 14 points. Coasting on an Aggie 30 right now.

    Who-knew-wise, Illini did a NUMBER on Cincinnati, 45-17. I definitely did NOT see that one coming. JEM should be pleased.

    VT cruised over the Catamounts, 45-3.

    Just for Daphne, we note Wyoming over Idaho, 42-10.

    Georgia made a case for itself, downing South Carolina (motto: “The Other USC”)…at least by an unexpected margin. 41-30.

    • Daph says Thank You !!!!!!!! Coaches have lost all confidence in Knight.

    • Yes, yes he is!

  14. Oh, and LSU up 35-7 on UAB, with simply hours to go before the pain ends. Ho to the hum.

  15. We are saddened to report that Rose-Hulman dropped the season-opener to Kalamazoo 28-23.

    We are happy to report, however, that Christopher Newport logged a 17-10 win against Salisbury, which came in ranked #16 in Div III. Even without a Fahvaag enlivening the brass section. Good job, Captains!

  16. NOW the WVU RBs start running all over the Sooners.

    Although I guess if the QB is going to throw directly to the Sooner defenders, as he did just now, it’s all a wash anyway.

  17. So Knight said, “Hey, that looks like fun — I need to get in on some of that throwing it directly to the defenders action!”

    • Tulsa game pretty exciting!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Wow!!!!!!!!!!

  18. Yeah, fun times for Tulsa there. Could have enjoyed a bigger point spread.

    Talk about excruciating in Norman. All that work for 3 lousy points in the second half. Like watching paint get messed up while it’s trying to dry.

    • I am sure you noticed Knight was hit right on the knee cap toward the end of the 3rd. That is the last time the coaches let him run.
      He lost his confidence.
      It is interesting that OU could run the ball in the 4th when everyone in the Western Hemisphere knew they were not going to throw.
      WV had 7 or 8 in the box, the line still moved them a bit. The missed field goal was a nice touch.
      Landry Jones looks pretty good huh?
      The D might be for real.
      If OU can figure out a way to complete 10 passes for about 120 yards a game, they could blow people up with their new and improved run game.

      • Didn’t see the kneecap — presumably I was switched to Tulsa on that play. I did notice a precipitate drop in confidence for Knight. He looks like good material that needs a lot more work. Serious judgment issues with the throwing. His arm doesn’t look bad, needs some technique drill.

        He had adequate pocket time, possibly a function of WVU D’s, er, lack of dominance. OU line looked about as surging and stalwart as Wm & Mary’s last week.

        • Trainers were flexing the right knee for a while. His foot was planted when the linebacker made the hit.
          He seemed to be walking okay after the game.

  19. It did look like Salazar’s kick would have slid through even from 39 yards. A least from the angle we were viewing.

    That said, it’s a good thing the Rams gave him the 5-yard freebie.

  20. Shorthorns gave up over 500 yards rushing by the Mormons.
    Maybe 4 backs direct snap and no QB for OU/Texas.

  21. Those Christopher Newport University Captains pulled off a stunning upset of the Salisbury Seagulls. 17-10 in the Captains’ home opener. When I checked at the half, the score was 7-0 Gulls and it looked like the stout Captains D was going to get pooped on again for the third year in a row.

    But the offense rallied in the second half for two TD’s and an FG to open their season on a winning note.

    Heading down to Newport News for Family Weekend… picnicking, football, and a great Sunday Brunch in the Student Union dining hall (yeah… I mean it.. it’s primo… better than a restaurant buffet..). Can’t get more American than that.

    Army got pasted by Ball State, so the football karma had to maintain some sort of balance… drat…

    Go Hokies!
    Go Captains!
    Go Army! Beat Navy! (ok ok… it;s an early vain hope.. but still we must not set Memorial Markers to rumbling at West Point…)

  22. So, Dallas stays in front the whole game, shuts down and rattles Eli, creates a real, live “pocket” for Romo, could have won by more if a wildly talented offense had lost the stupid turnovers and those razza-frazzin HOLDING PENALTIES…

    Maybe they won’t be mopping up the basement floor this year?

    (Or maybe the HOLDING PENALTIES will dog them the entire year? Have I mentioned the HOLDING PENALTIES?? It’s been, like, five years now, Pokes. Time to shelve the pacifier and the blankie and stop with the HOLDING PENALTIES.)

    • Well, Manny out at UT after BYU debacle, Roberts back in.
      Mack promoted to corner office with big window after this season?

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