College Football’s Opening Harvest

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Congratulations, college football fan – you made it!

After six months of trudging along through the hissing of untamable lawns, Frank Ocean’s endlessly dull carpentry show and, worst of all, baseball, you’ve made it. You’re here and you can leave one of the worst international capers not named The Thomas Crown Affair remake (don’t @ me) in the rear view.

College football is back, and we’re here to sell you all of the fantastic fruits and veggies that the farm of opening weekend has to offer as we head into autumn’s bountiful harvest of football. We’ll just warn you that farm-to-table doesn’t always mean that it’s the freshest. But hey, one dash of candy red paint will turn that moldy thing into the ripest beefsteak tomato.

THURSDAY: SOUTH CAROLINA AT VANDERBILT ON ESPN AT 8:00 PM EST

Hey, calm down, I know what you’re thinking: “You want me to watch this?!” 

The answer? Hell yeah.

Listen, it’s been awhile. College football is not always a glorious display of talent and coaching wizardry. Sometimes it’s an absolute train wreck; some of us forget that. What better way to reintegrate yourself into the sport by watching two teams play “The Floor is Lava” with the end zone?

In one corner, you have South Carolina, led by the former Florida pariah, offensive averse Kill Bloodchamp. In the other, you have Vanderbilt, a team who went 4-8 last year, including two conference wins that were strong armed out of Missouri and Kentucky. This game is going to be, by all accounts, absolutely terrible. But it’s better that we start this weekend with grain alcohol and ease our way into the rest of it. Also, I think we owe it to Steve Spurrier to enjoy this opening weekend tradition. Miss ya, Steve.

SATURDAY 

#3 OKLAHOMA V. #15 HOUSTON ON ABC AT 12:00 PM EST

Once you have had a chance to rehydrate and enough time to forget about that weird scythe fight you saw in Nashville, there will be great farm fresh eggs waiting for you. Inside those eggs are some of those silkiest yolks you will ever drip onto a frying pan in your life. Scramble them puppies up, put some pepper on them and enjoy. This is Oklahoma-Houston at NRG Stadium in Houston. This is where your weekend starts to glow as radiantly as the color of those scrambled eggs.

Houston, as you might remember, had a great 2015 season, with former Ohio State offensive coordinator Tom Herman as the head coach. In 2016, he’s decided to stick with the Cougars despite a heaping of job vacancies trying to lure him away with truck loads of cash. This does not bode well for an American Athletic Conference, and it certainly does not bode well for Big Game Bob, who has a tendency to flub things up when the spotlight shines bright.

Despite the fact that the Sooners return QB Baker Mayfield and RB powerhouse Samaje Perine, Houston could put a screw (wink, wink) in the Playoff hopes of Oklahoma without ever looking back at the carnage.

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Photo courtesy of ESPN

#5 LSU v. WISCONSIN ON ABC AT 3:30 PM EST

We probably should’ve saved the grain alcohol for this game because there is going to be a whole mountain of food served by people that are too intoxicated to care that it’s thoroughly cooked.

LSU, one of the top teams in the country, is heading to Lambeau Field in Green Bay to face a Wisconsin team that is mehhhhhhh, at bestThe on-field action is going to be very one-sided in favor of the Bayou Bengals. However, the main course is not the main draw: it’s the small plates that come in the form of crowd shots.

If you’re not a fan of tapas, you will be after you watch the small, precious moments of camera time for the two drunkest football fan bases in America.

#18 GEORGIA v. #22 NORTH CAROLINA ON ESPN AT 5:30 PM EST 

Look at all these nuts. I feel like Harlan Pepper lookin’ at all these nuts in Jimmy Carter’s home state: “Pine nut, peanut, walnut, Kirby Smart….”

Kirby Smart was hired (possibly elected?) as Georgia’s head coach in the offseason, and he looks like another surefire bet from the Saban tree, according to Georgia fans. A surefire bet, despite the fact that the defensive fruits that fall from Tree of Saban historically turn out to be goddamn sweet gum pods.

This game is being played in the Georgia Dome, amounting to what most certainly will be home field advantage for the Dawgs. UGA also has Nick Chubb at their disposal to boot. North Carolina has a pretty explosive offense and should give the home team somewhat of a scare. But, goddamn, do I want to see Kirby Smart fail so that we can cut down that Saban tree once and for all.

#20 USC v. #1 Alabama on ABC at 8:00 PM EST 

Like California avocados, USC will spoil quickly.

So begins another year of the Alabama Death March.

SUNDAY: #10 NOTRE DAME AT TEXAS ON ABC AT 7:30 PM EST

Everyone likes an old favorite. That usually comes in the form of something like barbecue, which might suffice those in Austin. For the over-the-hill crowd coming in from South Bend, we’re serving up some incredibly undercooked prime rib from the carver’s table at a K&W Cafeteria.

It’s kind of a surprise that those worshipping at the altar of Touchdown Jesus have deemed it appropriate to play on a Sunday. Maybe they are considering it a mission trip to teach Texas how to play football???

Hey, it’s still a game, and a game like this is better than no game at all.

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Photo courtesy of Sports On Earth

MONDAY: #11 OLE MISS V. #4 FLORIDA STATE ON ESPN AT 8:00 PM EST

I’ve given up with food metaphors, so, um, Florida oranges for no reason at all.

This game is one of the most unpredictable of the nationally televised games. Swag Kelly and Dalvin Cook are both going to do things that are going to make you jump around in fits of joy. It’s going to be one of the most exciting, and it’s going to make you remember how grateful you are for this game.

Praise be, college football is here again!

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