What made me smile most over the weekend — other than winning Joey the Vig’s Bowl Pool, with two games left to be played, about which I shall boast in a moment — was watching Steve Alford’s UCLA Bruins gobsmack crosstown rival Southern Cal.
Not that I love the Bruins that much, though their classic unis are still the smartest looking in college hoops. Or, that I care much for usually surly Alford, for that matter.
It’s really the hubris of He With Hot Wife & Big Mouth But No Resumé, Andy Enfield, the new insufferable without portfolio coach at USC.
So, it was poetic justice that in the first meeting of the first year mentors, the score read: UCLA 107, Southern Cal 73.
As we wags are wont to say on occasion to add emphasis, it wasn’t that close.
The coup de grace is that Alford’s sons contributed significantly to the W. Bryce tallied 20. Corey hit the FT for the final point, which matched UCLA’s best tally ever against the Trojans.
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U of L’s next football coach?
I haven’t a clue.
But I have confirmed a tidbit from the past that gives perspective to the current speculation. Specifically that the name Rich Rodriguez is being mentioned.
He is currently the head man at Arizona, after a successful, career enhancing stint at West Virginia, which led to his moving on to Michigan, where he wasn’t a great fit. Or, very successful.1
When Ron Cooper was fired at U of L, Rodriguez was offensive coordinator at Tulane under Tommy Bowden. The Green Wave had just gone undefeated. Rodriguez contacted a member of the U of L football organization, to indicate his interest in the head coaching position at Louisville. Which went to John L. Smith.
I don’t know if the speculation currently in the press regarding Rodriguez to Louisville has any substance or not? You’ll have to ask Tom Jurich. He’s the ONLY one who knows.
But, if Rodriguez’s name’s in the hopper, it won’t be the first time.
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Periodically I’m reminded that Steve Fisher is a pretty good basketball coach. He toils generally under the radar at San Diego State.
The Aztecs won in Allen Fieldhouse yesterday afternoon. Out of conference visitors don’t win there often.
Fisher’s teams spread the court and hang tough. Even though they tried to give the game away, missing the front end of a couple of 1+1s late. Then senior Xavier Thames got to the line and shut the door on the Jayhawks.
That Joel Embiid Kansas kid is a keeper.
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But, in Green Bay, such a condition is just another balmy winter’s day. Lambeau was full last night, despite the minus degrees and wind chill. I will say I didn’t see any dumbasses in the stands without shirts on. At least while I was watching.2
The Packers fell, but I loved that 4th & 2 scramble/ escape of Aaron Rogers, who got the ball to Randall Cobb, saving the possession on their last scoring drive.
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The Wild Card Weekend Not Ready For Prime Time Award goes once again to previous recipient: Cincinnati Bengals.
The Bengals have registered playoff bagels during the Marvin Lewis Era.
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Oh yes, you betcha, I so intended to do another column about Joey The Vig’s Bowl Pool, but now’s not the time for shtick.
I clinched 1st place after Vandy’s W Saturday afternoon.
Trust me I understand it is nothing but dumb luck. I claim no expertise. That said, I did somehow correctly pick 16 of last 17 games against the spread. The only L in that streak came when LSU got jobbed, and Iowa retained possession after a fumble late, allowing the Hawkeyes to score and cover.
I am just bemused, obviously pleased, but not sure how such strange things happen?
I spent no more than 180 seconds making my picks. When I got to the BCS games, I simply circled the underdogs. I didn’t overthink or, frankly, analyze any of it.
I’ve been entering this pool for decades, and think I came in third one year in the late 80s or early 90s. Which is to say, these things tend to even out over the long haul.
Which the bookies know. They want even amounts bet on both sides, and they just take the rake. Or, as some call it, the vigorish.
As in Joey The Vig.
Who is, at this moment, my main man.
— Seedy K