And for yours truly. The kid went 5-0 in his Week I predictions.
Hold your applause. No, really, thanks a lot. Oh, gosh, I’m overwhelmed. Oh my, you like me, you really really like me. Thanks sooooooooooooo very much.
A couple of Playbill nuggets, before I reveal this week’s five winners.
Because of Tanner Magnum, playwrights are rewriting “Book of Mormon.” Magnum spent his last couple of years, bicycling around Chile, proselytizing about his faith, converting the heathens. Upon his return, he traded in his short sleeved white dress shirt and dark tie for a BYU helmet and pads. When called upon to replace the Cougs’ starting QB, Magnum secured his spot among the faithful with a game-winning, clock at 0:00 Hail Mary that smote the formerly mighty Nebraska Cornhuskers. On Tom Osborne Field no less.
But this week’s acting Oscar goes in a landslide to Bowling Green DL Mike Minns. As Tennessee was about to score, Minns lost his shoe, and started to run off the field. When the officials didn’t stop the clock, he flopped on his back like a beached whale, feigning, well, an injury of sorts, one would suppose. While his team lost, Minns performance, for which he received neither flag nor admonition nor any type of medical treatment, makes him a deserving recipient of the golden statuette.
Anyway, with South Carolina, Florida, Vandy and UK feeling like understudies, sitting backstage, as their ten SEC compatriots made it into the Top 25 cast; and former Texas play caller Shawn Watson having been demoted to understudy, here’s this week’s five winners.
Washington State @ Rutgers. I am so very sure there are some skeptics among you, who believe this game has been selected, simply so I can get snarky about these two programs, arguably the most beleaguered in all of the FBS.1 Mike Leach, whose personality would indicate he should perhaps be working a booth at Funtown in Cave City instead of coaching Wash State, stands 12-26 during his stint in Pullman. The latest setback, a loss to FCS Portland State as a 31 point overdog. Meanwhile Mike Flood’s depth chart reads like a bed check lineup in the high security section at Folsom. At least the Scarlet Knights didn’t totally besmirch the Big Ten brand last week. They trampled Norfolk State, where it really matters. On the artificial turf. This one’s in Joisey too. So I’m taking convicts over lunatic.
LSU @ Mississippi State. Les Miles’ Tigers, thanks to inclemency with extreme prejudice, are forced to journey to Starkville without a meal in their tummy. Their “battle” with hapless McNeese State was called on account of weather last weekend, after only a handful of plays. So, the Bengals remain an untested commodity. Meanwhile, Cowbell State ventured down the road to Hattiesburg, where it was challenged more than expected by rebuilding Southern Miss. Both of these teams hope to contend in the toughest division in the entire sport. Meaning the loser may be SOL after its first league game. The Tigers are surely still smarting from the Bulldogs’ W last year in Baton Rouge. But Dan Mullen’s charges will be playing in the comforting cowbell cacophony of Starkville. Maroon.
Oregon @ Michigan State. Vernon Adams has been one of the big stories coming into the season. He’s the 5th year guy who matriculated to Quack U. from FCS Eastern Washington, and was named successor to Heisman winner Marcus Mariotta a week after arriving. Then in Oregon’s opener against his old school, former teammate John Kreifells showed his respect with a cheap shot, for which he was flagged for targeting and ejected. Adams says he’s recovered and ready. He better be. For he’s never faced a situation quite like what’s coming up in East Lansing. I picked Sparty to be one of my Final Four, and nothing in its less than spectacular W at Western Michigan has me jumping ship . . . yet. Just as the Green of Michigan State weren’t quite ready for the Green of Oregon last season out west, so is it vice versa this season. Meaning, to cut through the verbosity, the W goes to Sparty.
Kentucky @ South Carolina.The mentor of Carolina, South was not pleased last weekend, despite his Cocks’ W over Carolina, North. Then again, the Old Ball Coach is prone to irascibility. Which, truth be told, was appropriate after his team’s performance in what may have been opening weekend’s most boring and worst played encounter. But nothing says “It’s a new day” like looking at your schedule and realizing UK’s coming to town. Sure, the Wildcats upset Coach Visor last season. Which, frankly, is all the more reason why Palmetto State pigskin fans should be optimistic. Ye ol’ revenge factor is what I’m referring to. Plus, there was Kentucky’s patented late game meltdown in its home opener. I’m sure the BBN is optimistic, but it don’t mean a thing, ’cause it ain’t got the sting.
Houston @ Louisville. The Tom Herman Era got off to a boffo start. The former Ohio State OC guided his Cougars to a resounding W over Tennessee Tech, doubling up on the visitors. Though it ended on a sour note, as Houston gave up a 77 yard strike and score with the clock running down. Meanwhile, flaws and fundamental failures notwithstanding, Louisville stuck with legit national contenda Auburn. Plus the Cards got that A Star is Born thang goin’ on. Lamar Jackson . . . who knew? Well, Bobby P knew, so it’s no wonder he looked like he was bursting at the seams every time the QB situation was brought up before opening kickoff. Both of these teams are works in progress. But the Cards are closer to the future is now than the Cougars.
— Seedy K