I have been off my game. Off my feed, if you will. Off my rocker even. Another 2-3 weekend, and I stand a most mediocre 10-10 for the season.
This is obviously unacceptable.
Thus, I have fired my stat guy. My O and D coordinators have been deep sixed. And my special teams coach is adios. My training table has been rejiggered. And, no more practices in full pads during the week.
So, with renewed vigor, a tweaked regimen designed for maximum results, I forge ahead into Week V of the season.
UCLA @ Arizona State. Hubba, hubba, sis boom bah. A Top 15 Thursday matchup to start the weekend. What a delight to watch. Assuming, of course, you have enough energy to stay up for a 10:00 EST kickoff on a school night. Todd “I’m Outta Here After 15 Minutes” Graham seems to have found a home in Tempe. And a pipeline to JUCO talent with a serious diameter. The Sun Devils O is putting up some big point totals, averaging 47 ppg, 7th in the land. They also upended the Bruins last season in a 38-33 shootout in LA. After UCLA did the same the year before, 45-43, in their visitor unis. Mora’s charges are unbeaten, but, so far, unimpressive. Brett Hundley remains questionable with his hyperextended elbow, an injury suffered last week during the W over Texas in the JerryDome. So, I must ask, can Jerry Neuheisel git ‘er done two weeks in a row? I like the home team to prevail. Arizona State.
Duke @ Miami (Fla). Here’s the reality, football fans. The Glory Years in Coral Gables are long ago, far away. The Schnell, Jimmy Johnson and Dennis Erickson are no longer around. Not even, Larry Coker. Al Golden’s ‘Canes gave a hint of improvement last season, going 9-4, after 7-6, 6-6 and 7-5 seasons previously. Looks like a false positive to me. They lost by 18 in Louisville in their opener, and haven’t been much better since. Duke meanwhile, coming off its best season since The Ol’ Ball Coach was there has been chewing up its foes so far in a 4-0 start. Though Elon, Troy, Kansas and Tulane aren’t exactly high cuisine. Can Miami get any kind of bump from its usual paltry home crowd? Uh, no. But, I got a feeling. Hurricanes prevail.
Maryland @ Indiana. What’s the name of that place in Brown County that serves biscuits with that sublime apple butter? Well, whatever, it’s liable to be real busy this weekend. Hope is renewed for IU football fans after last week’s upset at Mizzou. Easily the most surprising result of the young season. So there might be traffic jams around Bloomington as alums return for the Hoosiers’ Big Ten opener. It’s 3-1 Maryland’s first game in its new conference. IU leads the series 2-0, but the last time they met was 1935, when Spiro Agnew was but a teenager with the look of avarice in his eyes. Is Indiana ready to make this autumn sport meaningful? I dunno. But I’m down with the Crimson & Cream in this one.
Vanderbilt @ Kentucky. Talk about two programs sprinting in opposite directions, these are them. And how fortunate for the Cats, on a legitimate uptick, to catch the desultory ‘Dores early in their SEC schedule as opposed to the traditional late season forgettable. Are the Cats invigorated after their narrow defeat in Gainesville, and a week off to rejuvenate? Ab-so-friggin- lutely. In his second season, Mark Stoops is giving hope to the BBN that his Wildcats could become legit. Meanwhile, Derek Mason is wondering why the hell he ever left Palo Alto? Kentucky. Big.
Wake Forest @ Louisville. Both teams have new coaches. Dave Clawson is in charge now for the 2-2 and decidedly mediocre Demon Deacons. Bobby Petrino has yet to display the magical mojo seen during his first U of L administration. Which era ended soon after these teams only meeting ever, that Cardinal W in the Orange Bowl. The visitors have been woeful in recent seasons, on the road in the ACC. Actually, they haven’t been much more successful at home. How fortunate that the Cards, still searching for some magic, get this one at home after several weeks of mediocrity. Obviously, I wish the best for Will Gardner, but must ask: Is his injury a blessing for Louisville? A chance for Reggie Bonnafon to come in and win one for his old man? We’ll find out Saturday, when U of L shall win. How well the Cardinals play will determine if the Red & Black Faithful turn their lonely eyes to Terry Rozier after the final horn?
— Seedy K