YOU TOOK TOO MUCH: Lessons from Week 3
Why are we in Berkeley and the stands are full of Ohio State fans? Can someone explain why Nick Saban is running an up-tempo offense? Why is there a fox running around a football field? Did Joel Stave just put the ball on the ground? Why are these Airheads making me cry? IT’S LIKE THE FLAVOR IS RUNNING THROUGH MY BODY. SWEET MAGNIFICENT MYSTERY WHITE FLAVOR, I HAVE CRACKED YOUR CODE. (YOU TOOK TOO MUCH, DUDE. YOU’RE TRIPPIN’ BALLZZZZZ)
Yes, you were on LSD from Thursday until Sunday morning. No, everything is fine. You didn’t burn anyone’s couch, and you certainly didn’t come close to losing to Akron. But I don’t think your perception of the world is going to be right for awhile. It might be crippled going forward, but that’s what happens when you visit Lubbock and then proceed to stand out in the Arizona desert. Don’t worry – you’re still sane, and you can still call out bad officiating. You just had a bad trip with Jesse Palmer – it’s going to be alright.
You learned that Texas A&M – Alabama was a great game! But was it worthy of a “Game of the Century” tag? Nope. Were there any implications for this end result besides narrowing the SEC West division chase and earning a W? Well, maybe the fact that AJ McCarron can get more press as being “better” than Johnny Manziel, but that’s where it stops. If anything was implicated in this game, it was that Nick Saban, like most college football coaches, minces words as if he were Francis Underwood. For a man who really thought no-huddle offenses were
dangerous not preferable to power football, there sure was a lot of hurry-up and AJ McCarron bombs down the field.
McCarron threw for 334 yards and four touchdowns in a game where Saban acknowledged that time of possession was really for the birds. Alabama went score for score against Texas A&M because it was pretty clear out of the gate that there is no clear way to prepare for Manziel. In a game where Manziel racked up 464 yards through the air and 98 yards on the ground, the Tide emerged victorious even though it was evident that the defense had no answer for him (Side note: you really started geeking out when you realized that stifling defense is at a premium in the SEC this year).
You also learned in your psychedelic state that things get a little bit crazy in the Southwest when the sun goes down. In Lubbock, aside from a fox being on the field (FOX ON THE FIELD), bizarre penalties made interesting a game between TCU and Texas Tech that lost most of its steam after the first quarter.
Texas Tech scored on their opening drive with a Blake Mayfield pass to Kenny Williams. A field goal later in the first put them up by ten with no other points scored until the third quarter, when TCU’s Jaden Oberkrom kicked a 37-yard field goal to put the Horned Frogs within seven. Despite the fact TCU was able to intercept Mayfield three times, they could never capitalize on it due to a combination of inept offense and an officiating crew that was ripped straight out of a Buster Keaton film. Needless to say, it was an ugly game with an ugly box score of 20-10. The only thing making this kind of football attractive was Kliff Kingsbury, who provided a timeless picture that could have only been topped by a wild animal wondering around inside Jones AT&T Field.
Ugly doesn’t begin to describe the end of the Wisconsin – Arizona State game, in which a last-ditch effort by Joel Stave and the Badgers proved fruitless after a confusing series of events where everybody ends up screaming. It’s really just a failed effort by everybody involved except for Arizona State because Todd Graham hates losing, especially losing to a program to which he will probably relocate if Gary Andersen falls short of keeping the Badgers a winning program.
It was the most confusing part in an otherwise thrilling game which featured the Badgers keeping up with the Sun Devils despite the temperature staying steady at an oppressive 97 degrees. Melvin Gordon ran the ball extremely well, putting up 193 yards and two touchdowns for the nightcap game despite having to run through an Arizona State defense anchored by All-American lineman Will Sutton. The lack of defensive stops on the part of ASU was made up for by the offense, which relied on the arm of Taylor Kelly to get in the red zone, where Marion Grice ultimately pounded the ball in the end zone. Grice was responsible for all of the Sun Devils’ touchdowns, while Kelly recorded 352 yards through the air with one interception.
This game could very well have been a win for Wisconsin, but, once again, chaotic offensive bumbling and awful officiating led to Todd Graham basking in all of his futuristic headset (soon to be completed with Google Glass) glory.
The only thing that made you feel safe and drove away all the mechanical spiders you were hallucinating about was stability in the fact that the Big Ten is still not very good at college football. Ohio State attained the only win against a Pac-12 team over the weekend with a victory over Cal that felt like the university moved its campus from Columbus to Berkeley. Each of the others, Illinois, Wisconsin and Nebraska, failed to add any high profile wins over another major conference. Adding to that, Purdue lost to Notre Dame, and Michigan barely inched by the Akron Zips. There are bright spots to be found within the conference which suggest a higher interest in football (hey, Northwestern) but it looks like down times might be here again as Illinois is still gon’ Tim Beckman and Nebraska still gon’ have the defensive mentality of the Maginot Line.
You also had a bull session with someone tripping on mushrooms where you babbled on about how Greg Robinson was going to turn the Texas defense around only to find out that Ole Miss has black bears which scare everyone on the Longhorn defense. You didn’t actually see the black bears play because you don’t have the Longhorns Network. You just accepted it as truth.
In reality, black bears did not play against the Longhorn defense but Dr. Bo Wallace did. Wallace was performing surgery on a secondary that has not been great in years with a performance where he recorded 177 passing yards and two touchdowns. On the ground, the Rebels’ Jeff Scott provided some assistance with the necessary incisions (164 yards and one touchdown) to gut Texas further. It’s not looking good in Austin, and it’s not looking good for Mack Brown. Wallace just confirmed the suspicions of the sporting nation on Saturday night: the cancer of Mack Brown has become malignant, and treatment will have to begin immediately.
Your bad trip through college football is over but the awful memories are not. You now have the insight to proceed in your indulgence with extreme caution if you choose to. Remember though, it’s more than just turning on, tuning in, and dropping out. You also have to be wary of Central Florida and George O’Leary, Penn State. His pronunciation of Floridians alone is enough to make your psychosis from a bad trip worsen.
IN OTHER NEWS: Oregon handed Tennessee its worst loss since 1910, and now you’re feeling bad about Tennessee football again. South Carolina beat Vanderbilt by a margin of ten points in a game which, of course, featured a Steve Spurrier visor toss. Oklahoma beat Tulsa with a freshman quarterback nicknamed the Belldozer by 31 points because Bob Stoops loves to say hello. Oklahoma State murdered Lamar, which will be included as an added special report about the homicidal tendencies among the Cowboys in the Sports Illustrated shock-and-awe expose. LSU rolled over Kent State, and 2013 Zach Mettenberger is a far cry from 2012 Zach Mettenberger. Stanford beat Army after giving our armed forces hope that they could beat the team supported by the domestic terrorism of the Cardinal Band. Florida State’s Jameis Winston can throw the ball really well, as illustrated by the 214 yards he racked up against Nevada. Louisville beat Kentucky, and Kentucky football was nationally televised to our discontent. Louisiana Monroe pulled out a victory against Wake Forest, and we’re all laughing at the ACC again.
Editor’s Note: Just a point of pride here – Fordham, an FCS school, defeated Temple, an FBS school, on a last-second pass to the endzone. It was the first time in a decade that a Patriot League team had defeated an FBS school. Hail, men of Fordham, hail! – R.M.
WHILE YOU WERE BEING A SPORTS SHUT-IN: Dave Chappelle has a great Kanye West story because life keeps getting better. Blood Orange released a new single with a music video that showcases hilarious Dev Hynes dancing and a great song. You can have fun learning about the Jewish faith through eScapegoats and Twitter-friendly confessions. 2 Chainz released a cookbook with his alright album, and it’s significantly better than the music. Vice magazine is rolling out a documentary about the rally of the Ku-Klux Klan and the counter rally of the Crips in the oddest Southeastern city in America, Memphis.