Tuesday, October 30, 2007

About Last Saturday (and Thursday)...

Sorry for the delay in posting the weekend recap. The wife and I have been catching up on our movie watching, highlighted by the eminently quotable and exponentially-funnier-after-repeat-viewings Blades of Glory. As such, today's photo captions are brought to you by that fine slice of cinematic genius, since I am too lazy to actually think of anything creative on my own...

Alabama in 1992 and Ohio State in 2002 won several games like this (although perhaps not nearly as dramatic), were summarily dismissed throughout those seasons as unworthy of being mentioned with the big guns, yet in the end won their national championship bowl games in which they were huge underdogs (curiously, both against supposedly dominant Miami teams looking to repeat). To play like ass for 55 minutes and still come out of Blacksburg with a victory is nothing but positive. Every great team in every season turns in a clunker or two. Winning the clunkers is what separates a Music City Bowl team from a BCS Championship Game team. As for the Hokies, the offense is still a wreck, but the defense turned in the most dominant performance of any 1-A defense this season...for 55 minutes. Prevent-D and all of the quasi-prevents are the scourge of college football.

I just threw up in here people...that's the reality. Another layer to the legend.

Distracted much? Coming off a bye week, Butch Davis' Tar Heels were flatter than a Huddle House pancake against the Demon Deacons, leading folks like me to speculate whether Davis may be a tad preoccupied with the goings-on at his alma mater, Arkansas. He's been mentioned in connection with that job for nearly two years, and appeared to be a shoo-in for it 14 months ago, when Houston Nutt was entering a make-or-break season, and then started 10-1 and won the SEC West. Can't fire a guy after that. Now that the Nutt-house is falling apart, ol' Butch is back in the running. Remember, the nanosecond Miami was "back" in the national picture, Butch bolted for the Cleveland Browns approximately 27 seconds after saying he was staying in Coral Gables. Now that Arkansas is back in the mix, here is Davis' response when asked if he'd leave for Fayetteville: "I just told you, I’m thrilled to be at North Carolina." Is this guy running for public office? But I digress. Distraction is one thing that Jim Grobe will never be accused of, and Wake is playing like a team focused on a repeat ACC title. And this year's Deacons are better than last year's version.

I am never satisfied! It's a curse...

Not much to take away from this one, other than maybe - just maybe - the Tigers could avoid their annual slip into mediocrity. Winning on the road at Maryland (and up 30-3 in the 4th before the damned prevent made the game and stat-sheet appear much closer than it actually was), in order to stay alive in the Atlantic race, is something I didn't expect, especially in this goofy season. James Davis and CJ Spiller each surpassed the century mark on the ground and Cullen Harper was the Cullen Harper we all grew to love before the Georgia Tech fiasco. The injury-depleted Terps probably cost themselves a bowl bid with this loss, as three of their remaining four games are on the road (@UNC, @FSU, @suddenly resurgent NC State) and oh by the way, BC visits College Park in two weeks. The supposed genius that is Ralph Friedgen is dangerously close to posting his third losing season in the last four years.

It's over. All the endorsements, everything, gone. Oh my God, I can't get a real job; it'll kill me!

Ladies and gentlemen, introducing Donald Bowens - #80 in your playbook, #1 in your hearts. His 11 receptions for 202 yards and 2 TDs against the Cavaliers nearly equaled his entire season output coming into the game and gave the Pack a bonafide offensive attack, considering that QB Daniel Evans had his second 300+ yard outing in a row. Even better, State RB Jamelle Eugene ground out 112 yards on the ground, freeing up space for Bowens and vice versa. After starting off 1-5, the Wolfpack are now 2-0 after their rejuvenating bye-week, ready and able to spoil the Miami, Wake and Maryland seasons over the next month. As for Virginia, the charmed season finally came to an end...nonetheless, they were without QB Jameel Sewell for the last seven minutes and that was just after the Pack had taken the final lead. Who knows what could've happened if Sewell had those seven minutes to forge a comeback? The good news in Hoo-ville is that he'll be back for next week's showdown with Wake Forest. And oh yeah, they still have a half-game lead over Virginia Tech in the Coastal race.

Better step aside homeschool, there's a new Sheriff in town.

One of those games in which the scoreboard fails to tell the full story. The Seminoles had five trips into the redzone against the Blue Devils in the first half, yet only had nine points (on three field goals) to show for it at halftime (a missed FG and a fumble were the end results of the other two drives). They punched the ball into the end zone twice in the second half and as a whole looked the best and smoothest they had all season on that side of the ball. The fact that the steadier Drew Weatherford was back under center, that Antone Smith ran for 146 yards, and that it was Duke...all of that played a part in perhaps this game being the one in which the proverbial light turned on for the beleagured Seminole offense. Now that Weatherford clearly has the job to himself (thanks to this development), he should settle into the position over the next few weeks without having to worry about getting an early hook. And that's just in time, as a trip to Boston College looms this Saturday - the scene where Weatherford had his breakthrough as a freshman two years ago. As for Duke, it's doesn't get any easier, with Clemson and Georgia Tech up next. The buzz they generated after the Northwestern win and the close calls with Navy, Miami, and Wake Forest is gone.

But I remember Boston, and that victory was as sweet as the cream pie for which the town was named.

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