Category Archives: Football

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Championship Week

Frankly, midday Saturday I was of two minds about the rest of the day’s outcomes.

Michigan and Louisville had been whomped up the side of their heads by arch rivals. UVa finally beat the rival Hokies for the first time since Tommy Jefferson was sneakin’ out back and shtuppin’ that Hemings gal in the shed.

Liberty was winning.

Auburn, my pick in the Iron Bowl, was back and forth then again with the Crimson Tide.

Peerless Prognosticator Seedy K was obviously hoping for a War Eagle W. Because 2-3, while far from exemplary, has a sweeter ring to it than 1-4.

But, to be honest, Literary Seedy K, the wanna be writer aspiring to consequence, he who would hope for eloquence, sort of wished for an Auburn L. Because then I had my oh so clever lede.

“Give me Liberty, or give me Death.”

Sigh.

But, being a man of verbosity if nothing else, I worked it in anyway. Too good to go to waste.

So I stand 46-26, heading into the last battles before Selection Sunday.

This weekend’s Champion Winners: Continue reading Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Championship Week

Louisville CardFile: Kentucky

Saturday evening, with the sting of the Cardinals’ loss still in need of some prescriptive to lessen the pain, with the cloud of the defeat at the hands and feet and speed and strength and dominance of Arch Rival still hovering, I got a message from the person I’ve known longer than anybody else in my life.

RVY and I met when when we were 6 or 7 years old, and our older brothers were playing football at Atherton HS. We’d pitch and catch the pigskin and play along the edges of practice, when our dad’s took us. Which was often.

He went to Belknap. I went to Longfellow. But our paths crossed again at Highland Jr. High, and we schooled together through our own years at Atherton, then again when we were law school classmates.

Through the years, we hooped in alleyways, and, as adults, played racquet ball.

As his older brothers were, so was RVY a football player. His father always reminded me of Bear Bryant, his carriage, his demeanor. A man’s man. A football guy.

RVY moved to SEC Country a few years back. Which makes sense.

He always loved the Cats. As I have always loved the Cards. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Kentucky

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Rivalry Week

Just as I jump back on the Oregon bandwagon, pull my funky jersey facsimile out of mothballs, dust off my 8×10 of Phil Knight and put fresh incense in the burner of my little homage in the corner, just as I clear the shelves of Whole Foods of the most sublime smoked duck out of respect for the Ducks (and my gustatory obsession), just when I’m pumped that I’ll have an actual rooting interest in the Final Four . . .

. . . the Quack throw in a clunker in the desert, spit out the proverbial bit, fall ingloriously to the Sun Devils. So the kid is SOL.

Because, even more importantly, after correctly predicicating that Michigan, Baylor, Kentucky and Louisville would prevail, placing me thusly on the precipice of my third perfecto weekend of the campaign, I take a baseball bat to the kneecap, my bubble is burst, my train jumps the tracks . . .

. . . oh words fail me.

Bottom line: 4-1 for the weekend. 44-23 for the season.

But, it’s Rivalry Week. Only the Big Ones to weigh in on.

Here come the winners: Continue reading Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Rivalry Week

Louisville CardFile: Syracuse

Let’s set aside for a moment all the disaffection, defections, lack of depth, imperfections and other impediments that faced this 2019 edition of the Louisville Football Cardinals coming into the season. Those issues that were discussed and rehashed ad nauseam, those opinions and realities that informed the abundance of dire projections for any success.

They are but distant memories, given the reality that the consistently resilient Cardinals have won 7 games of the 11 they have contested, have finished in 2d place in the Atlantic Division of the ACC behind only mighty Clemson, and are but one potential victory over Arch Rival to match the winning total in the last year when that squad was led by the most transcendent player in all of contemporary football, Lamar Jackson.

Let’s simply consider what the Cards overcame Saturday in the type of grisly, misty, chilling weather, when one might have been caused to muse, Did the ACC at the last minute move the battle against Syracuse to London, when U of L conquered the visiting Orange, 56-34. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Syracuse

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week XIII

Well, we’re rounding into CFP form around here. (To use the rarely used around here royal “we.”)

Not only did my Louisville Cardinals grab the brass ring and secure that coveted station we like to call “bowl eligible,” but I pretty accurately surveyed Week XII’s college pigskin landscape in advance.

Auburn had too little too late, and fell to Georgia. Which means Gus Malzahn might have slipped over to Fayetteville for a chat with some Razorback movers and shakers. If the Plainsmen/ War Damn Eagles fall to a Tua-less Crimson Tide, said coach might be movin’ on.

But I digress.

As for the rest of my picks, well, they were spot on, thank you very much. Thanks to Penn State hangin’ on against a much better than usual Hoosier contingent, UK’s blessing that Vandy is woeful bunch, the Boomer Sooners’ Jalen-led 2d half comeback for the proverbial ages, and, best of all, U of L’s strong after halftime smackdown of the Wolfpack.

Sooooooo, 4-1 for weekend ups the campaign count to 40-22.

Snack on that, ye negativitators.

Let’s hope that said predictionary skill holds up for a lucky Week XIII.

This winners: Continue reading Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week XIII

Louisville CardFile: North Carolina State

The set up was too perfect — Edward Bulwer-Lytton style — and the denouement too off the charts sublime.

It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents — except at occasional interludes when it was checked by a violent gust of wind . . .

The improbably resourceful, surprisingly successful, fitfully resurgent University of Louisville Cardinals took the field at Carter-Finley Stadium hoping to fulfill a goal that was, let’s be frank, a pipe dream just months ago.

Bowl eligibility.

Other events of the day made a victory Saturday night in the Tobacco Road bluster even more imperative. The Cardinals final two opponents, the other impediments between them and six victories, appeared more formidable than when the day began.

Syracuse 49, Duke 6. Kentucky 38, Vanderbilt  14.

Take care of biz now, lessen the pressure of the final battles to come.

So, how do the Cardinals start?

Well, as if they want to make sure everybody watching understands, “Hey we’re the same guys who were here last year.” Continue reading Louisville CardFile: North Carolina State

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week

Looking back at last week’s picks, as is my wont before providing this coming slate’s victors, I must admit, the locals let me down.

Much to my chagrin, the Louisville Cardinals threw in a clunker at Miami.

And the Wildcats, who let me down only because I picked them to prevail which would have increased my winning percentage, did what UK usually has done in my lifetime when battling Tennessee. They tumbled down Rocky Top.

Stupid me for thinking Kentucky would beat even this season’s mediocre Volunteers. Must have been having one of those LSD flashbacks they warned us about back in the day.

Buuuuuuuuuuuuuuuut . . .

. . . Underdog Minnesota vanquished Pennsylvania State to remain undefeated in nine.

. . . Underdog LSU glossed up its already snazzy resumé with a W in Tuscaloosa.

. . . Mediocre Texas survived K State, which had recently toppled Boomer Sooner.

As predicticated right here.

3-2 for the weekend, pushed Seedy the Swami to 36-21 on the campaign.

As the season rounds the turn and heads for the home stretch, here come five Week XII winners:

Indiana @ Pennsylvania State. Part of the well worn shtick here are my annual references about how Hoosier fans always care more about hoops, and how they’re not paying attention to the perennially also running IU football squad. And I’ll normally pick whomever the Sunny Siders are contesting, and usually be correct. Well, something’s happened on the way to tipoff at Assembly Hall. More Crimson & Cream fans are taking note of what’s going down on the field turf at Memorial Stadium. The Hoosiers are 7-2, 4-2 in the B10, albeit not against the scariest of schedules, but way mo’ betta’ than their spate of losing records through the last, oh, decade or so. The Nittany Lions hopes for the Final Four were derailed last weekend in Minneapolis. How will they respond to the disappointment? Has Indiana improved enough to prevail in State College? Not really. But, hey, Archie’s ballers get Troy on Saturday.

Oklahoma @ Baylor. Flavor of the Month Matt Rhule’s Bears are one of the real how they doin’ that? stories of the season. They seem to always fall behind, and, so far, have always come back to snatch another scalp on the totem pole of victory. 9-0 for the season. 6-0 in the B12. It took three OTs to best the middlin’ Horned Frogs, but best them they did. Their Houdini act notwithstanding, doubters remain. Are they good? Or just lucky? Or, I suppose, both? We should, or may find out Saturday when they host the Sooners. Who escaped Iowa State, after the upend to Kansas State. I think the Green might be better than folks believe, worthy of their unblemished record. But feel the visitors shall conquer.

Georgia @ Auburn. Well, look who discovered the mother lode in the latest Selection Committee bracketology. The Georgia Bulldogs, who, that L between the hedges to the Gamecocks notwithstanding, are currently IN. In the fourth spot. Hmmmmmm. But I gotta ask, how many more boneheaded game decisions does Kirby Smart have circulating through the synapses of that brain of his? He sure has a penchant to find and use one at the most inopportune times. Meanwhile Auburn’s two Ls were both competitive Top 10 defeats, one in Gainesville, the other in Baton Rouge. Plus they’ve got the opening weekend W over the Quack. Toomer’s Corner, prepare thyself to be toilet papered.

Kentucky @ Vanderbilt. I hate having to pick this game. It’s only a matter of journalistic ethics — I always consider UK and U of L when they are playing — that prevents me from going to Minnesota @ Iowa or Tulane @ Temple. Hate it. Because the QB-bereft Cats aren’t very good. And Vandy sucks. But the ‘Dores did beat Top 25 Mizzou. Go figure. Last weekend, while the Cats were getting beat yet again by Rocky Top, Vandy laid down at Florida, zed to 56. Because the 4-5 Wildcats want to bowl, and don’t want it to depend on the season closer against arch rival, they have more on the line this weekend. Though I may rue the moment I type this: Big Blue.

Louisville @ North Carolina State. Respected Dave Doren’s Wolfpack had fashioned two 9-4 campaigns in a row coming into this season, when they were expected to be solid again, per guru Phil Steele. But injuries and whatever else might be in play have disrupted all that hope. Their only W in the ACC was by six points over hapless Syracuse, and their four Ls have been by 18, 21, 24 and 25. Louisville is all of a sudden a conundrum. Obviously considerably better under the new regime than last season, but ever wobbly. The nightmarish beatdown they suffered at Miami was like deja vu all over again. Can the Cards revive? Will they do the tighten up on Tobacco Road? In Coach Satt I believe. By dawn on Sunday, Fun is Bowling in this post season will be real for the Cards.

— Seedy K

Louisville CardFile: Miami

I’ve been on a diet for several months now.

Eating healthy foods. In healthy portions. Exercising.

Avoiding that handful of chips, or that “you can have just one cookie.”

I get on the scale first thing every morning.

Slowly, and given that I’m staying the course, inexorably, I’m dropping the avoirdupois.

But there is a strange phenomenon that is unsettling. But must be accepted.

I’ll get on the scale one day and hit a new low. Then, the next day, even though I haven’t jumped the rails in any regard, I’ll weigh a couple of pounds more.

It’s inexplicable. Most vexing. But I haven’t used it as an excuse to head over to Bennie Impellizzeri’s for my favorite pizza.

I accept those “setbacks” as part of the process. I stay the course.

So that’s my perspective when considering Saturday’s horrid performance by the Louisville Cardinals in Hard Rock Stadium. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Miami

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week X

Here’s what I learned from last week’s college football results.

Other than, that is, the cream is starting to rise to the top, other than fanbases are trying to figure out how their faves can capture that magic number of six victories and whether they want to and can afford to pack up the camper and drive all the way to the Great Northern Plains during snow season to watch their teams battle on blue turf in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, other than I’m truly grateful that Scott Satterfield is the coach of my school.

I learned that Mizzou’s terrible loss in NashVegas to Vandy was no fluke. They were blistered by the Cats. I learned that Scott Frost isn’t quite the pigskin prestidigitator the Husker Nation thought he’d be. At least yet. Also that Mack Brown can still coach.

SMU, North Carolina and Louisville were victorious as I predicted. Nebraska and Missouri were not.

3-2 on the weekend pushed me to 31-16 for the season. Which brings us to a curious Week X, during which the following noteworthies will not be playing: Louisville, Kentucky, Alabama, LSU, Ohio State, Penn State, Minnesota and Oklahoma.

It just seems odd, doesn’t it, that all those schools — and I’m sure there are others I’ve missed — are taking the same Saturday off at the beginning of November?

But there will be battles, and I’m here to advise which teams shall prevail.

The winners:

Kansas State @ Kansas. It is the cockamamie nature of the sport that this 117th edition of the Sunflower Showdown kind of all of a sudden has a bit of luster to it. At least pour moi, and I’m the one sitting at the keyboard. It’s not 1987 anymore — Tell me about it — for that’s the year KU entered at 0-8, and K State at 1-7. Rock Chalk Jayhawk has been inarguably the worst P5 team in the sport for years now. Maybe decades. Oh for the halcyon days of program breaker extraordinaire Charlie Weis. Then along came Grass Eatin’ Les Miles, whose charges won at Boston College, almost beat the Longhorns, and bested  Texas Tech last weekend in a battle of b-ball powers, young and old. Cranky ol’ Bill Snyder finally stepped down in the Other Manhattan, in somewhat of a snit since the school didn’t name his offspring to replace him. Instead the powers that be wisely selected four time FCS champ at North Dakota State Chris Kleiman, who already has a Sooner scalp on his totem pole of Ws in his first season in purple. Despite a post upset Oklahoma letdown, the gang dressed Princely wins.

Virginia @ North Carolina. Is the much chattered about ACC Coastal now a meme? I don’t know. I’m not really sure what a meme is, other than something millennials talk about all the time. I’m a lot of things, but no millennial. What that conference division is though is this: C R A Z Y. Two schools are 3-2 in the conglomeration, two are 2-2 and two are 2-3. Only Georgia Tech seems a non contender. I even read somewhere how a wag spent a bunch of time figuring out how the six could end up in a tie. All of which wackamundo is why I’ve put this otherwise mediocre battle on the board, Preseason favorite UVa has lost three of four and has a hobbled QB and star defender who will sit the first half. Mac Brown’s Tar Heels famously bested South Carolina and Miami to open the season, then fell thrice in a row, and have won 2 of their last 3, beating rival Duke last time out. The game’s at Kenan Memorial in Chapel Hill, allegedly one of the most bucolic venues in the land. Baby Blue becomes bowl eligible with a W.

SMU @ Memphis State. I am so so very sure that, by the end of Game Day, which will be broadcasting, I suppose, from Beale Street, we will have had plenty enough of Rendezvous rib adulation, shots of Sun Studio and, of course, the gratuitous reverence for Elvis. (If they’re really cool, they’ll set up at Graceland. Or, inside 706 Union Avenue.) The over/under on mentions of Colonel Tom Parker is 2. Take the under. Then, making a day of it, ABC Prime Time will be televising the AAC battle from the Liberty Bowl. Herbie won’t even have to fly to get there. SMU, as we know, remains among the nation’s undefeated. The Tigers have dropped only one, but barely escaped Tulsa last time out. Looking ahead, were ya, M State? It’s frankly hard to pick against the home team in what will surely be a tight game. But the image of Dana Kirk still gives me the creeps. The Tigers pull a Darius Washington at the end, missing a FG to lose. (Forgive the hoops references, simply can’t help myself.)

Oregon @ Southern Cal. How dysfunctional must it be in the offices of the Athletics Department at the University of O.J. Simpson? Plenty, it would appear. Coach Clay Helton was atop the Dead Man Walking list to start the season. His Trojans are 5-3 overall, but a heady 4-1 in league play and tied at the top of the South with the Utes. (Who themselves have a big one this weekend at UDub.) Helton is still believed to be a goner after the season. Unless, one must surmise, he guides his troops to Pasadena for the Rose Bowl. After that opening L to Auburn, the Quack have not been bested, though last weekend they escaped because Washington State’s Mike Leach appeared to have left his meds back at the team hotel. If you haven’t noticed, I’m a Duck fan. It’s too late to stop now.

Georgia vs. Florida (Jacksonville). Does it get any more SECish than this annual neutral site brouhaha? The World’s Larges Outdoor Cocktail Party. (Guess they’ve never been to the Kentucky Derby.) UGA XXXXXXXXVVIII. Gator Chomp. #6 in the land vs. #8 in the land. I swear, Brad Nessler’s going to sound like Verne Lundquist.  Or Lindsay Nelson. It’s Bronconagurskius’s game day decision. Florida’s only blemish: LSU. Geogia’s only loss: South Carolina. Ouch. Kirby Smart’s made some not very smart in game decisions. Dan Mullen still has his detractors, though this year’s contingent has “overachieved.” Now with but one L apiece in the conference’s Eastern Division, the winner becomes the fave to play the Bayou Bengals or Crimson Tide for league crown. Will the fans be rabid? Nah, game doesn’t really mean much. Yuk, yuk. Gators.

— Seedy K

 

Louisville CardFile: Virginia

After suffering another last minute kickoff return miscue Saturday against visiting Virginia, Louisville fans have to wonder what the Cardinals’ record might be if special teams were more diligent in onside kick situations?

It was an issue at Wake Forest. It was an issue on the soggiest Saturday of the season against UVa.

Oh yeah, wait a sec, that’s right, U of L would still be 5-3, and on its if-you-really-say-you-saw-this-coming-you’re-lying collision course with bowl eligibility. Just as the Demon Deacons were thwarted, so too did the Cavaliers go down in defeat.

Because this endearing band of University of Louisville Cardinal footballers — cliché alert — Bend. But. Don’t. Break.

What is it those signs in the football complex say? Resilience? Resilient?

As Lili von Shtupp said of the new sheriff in town’s physical prowess in “Blazing Saddles,” “It’s twue, it’s twue.”

 * * * * *

U of L’s defenders played easily their best overall game of the year. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Virginia