The Ragin’ Cajuns of Lafayette du Louisianne scored 21 unanswered after halftime to overwhelm their cross-state rivals from Monroe. Which W was dutifully predicted here. And which victory along with those by the Gators of Florida, the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame, the Volunteers of Tennessee (Have no fear, the bonus music video shall not be “Rocky Top”) and the Cardinals of Louisville by the hair on their chinny chin chins over the Demon Deacons of Wake Forest, sealed a pigskin perfecto by the kid for the weekend,.
5-0. How invigorating it is.
Funny, I haven’t heard yet from any of the usual nagging nabobs of negativitude, those who are ever willing to remind me of my mistakes at the earliest possible moment. You guys out there, or you gone fishin’?
Anyway, I’ve blasted ten games over .500, standing imperiously at 28-17 for the ’15 campaign.
So, yeah, I’m obviously full speed ahead into this weekend’s sumptuous slate of battles, several of which will have bearing on the schools competing New Year’s Eve in the Final Four.
But first, a musical interlude to celebrate the Ragin’ Cajuns W, and their connectitude with my Kajun Kaplan.
The Kaplan Waltz, of course. What else were you expecting?
And, now, this week’s prognostications:
LSU @ Alabama. The most loathsome interloper into the world of college sports recently is the concept of branding. It’s so Don Draper. So Mad Ave. So advertissimo. We used to talk about programs, like the tradition of the Alabama program. While wearing houndstooth for sure. Now it’s the Roll Tide Brand. And in this world of sponsored search responses, banner ads and pop ups, it’s working. We need only observe the initial standings of the CFP. That very same Crimson Tide squad, which lost at home to an Ole Miss team that lost to Memphis State, has, thanks to notoriety, expectation and savvy SEC marketing — thank you Paul Finebaum — jumped the line over several schools which have proven themselves more worthy thus far. Well, the Tide certainly gets a chance to prove itself this week on the gridiron, when Les Miles’ undefeated LSU Fournettes come a callin’. Tired as many of us might be of all the SEC boasting, those guys do take their football seriously. This is a big one. The Tigers have been ranked for the last 14 meetings, the Tide for the last nine. The Sabanista have won the last three in this division smashup, since the Bayou Bengals bested them 9-6 in Tuscaloosa four seasons back. Smart money is on the home team, praise The Bear and pass me another one of them Dreamland ribs. But, I gotta feelin’. Tigers win. Bama gets bumped from Final Four rankings. And they play that “Kaplan Waltz” up and down the bayous to celebrate.
Florida State @ Clemson. This is the one when Dabo Swinney can, with a W, finally, absolutely, positively, forever and always, bury use of the descriptor “Clemsoning.” It is a term that, within the confines of college football, has come to mean “the delivery of an inexplicably disappointing performance.” This year’s Tigers are undefeated. And sit atop those initial CFP standings, thanks mostly to a W over Notre Dame, which knew way more than everybody about branding — Thanks Gipper — before Madison Avenue even coined the term. Even though Clemson has lost 4 of its last five in the series, including the last three, this year’s orange-clad squad is impressive.1 Florida State, as always is formidable. But, all said and done, Dabo’s gonna be dancin’.
TCU @ Oklahoma State. That Select Committee that shall choose the Final Four doesn’t appear to be much enamored with Big 12 pigskinning, which I like to call Fast Break Football. At some point last Saturday, Smart Guy texted me and asked, “Are you watching Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma State?” Of course I was. Defense? I don’t need no stinkin’ defense. Last team with the ball wins. Which last week was the Okie State ‘Boys, by the hoops score of 70-53. The point is to win the game. If that means concentrating solely on fan-friendly offense, bring it on. Too many Bo and Woody acolytes on that Select Committee. Which means, when observing a couple of schools from the Heartland getting it on, if you don’t want to miss anything, you’ll have to time your bathroom breaks and scurries to the kitchen to fill up on chips and beverage. This home team averages 44 ppg, 7th in the land, while the Horned Frogs tally 48 ppg, 2d nationally.2 I didn’t need Dan Holgorsen’s low five with the TCU QB along the sideline to tell me Trevone Boykin’s the deal. But, it was a cool move. The purple visitors are favored, even though the home orange team is also undefeated, and has been, frankly, more impressive. I’m goin’ with T Boone Pickens State.
Kentucky @ Georgia. Nothing says we should be feelin’ better by Saturday night for the beleaguered Georgia Bulldogs and man on the hot seat coach Mark Richt than a visit from the Wildcats. UGa’s lost three of four. Athens hasn’t been under siege like this since the Peloponnesian War. But the Cats are comin’ to town, which should make everything OK. UK’s lost umpteen straight to Georgia, including the last two by scores of 17-59 and 31-63. Richt may be a Dead Man Walking, a mentor with other vistas on his mind, but he’ll hold the gang with pitchforks and torches at bay for at least another week. Georgia needn’t stoops to conquer.
Syracuse @ Louisville. Talk about a team that would really really really like to win one, say hello to Syracuse. The Orange have dropped five in a row, after an opening trio of Ws that were apparently a false positive. Sure, ‘Cuse only lost to LSU by 10, but that, frankly, is a BFD. An anomaly. Meanwhile the Cardinals have been borderline atrocious on offense the last couple of outings, and similarly not so laudable on defense way too much of the time. The Cards two top line QBs are banged up. Fortunately, the squad includes the best third team signal caller in the land in Kyle Bolin. He may start on Saturday. There are worse things that could happen. Assuming U of L’s offensive line all of a sudden starts to play better — an assumption without any factual basis whatsoever — U of L could, even should, break out. Or it may survive again, as it has the last two times out, also against an arguably inferior foe, by a digit or deux. Either way, Louisville gets the W.
— Seedy K