I feel the pain — literally — some have intended to inflict.
Though surgery isn’t necessary, I am in the care of a physical therapist for injuries caused by the barbs of one of the more vocal members of my antagonista.
In the guise of remorse, and the necessity of transparency, I report from the get go that I, if not foremost, am among the many who were not quite ready for this already absurd college football season.
I predicted that Middle Tennessee would venture to West Point and come away with a victory.
Blue Raiders 0, Black Knights 42.
Yes, it was also my surmise that Annapolis would sail away with a win over Brigham Young.
Middies 3, Mormons 55.
Battered is a more apt description of my physical condition than black and blue. It is little consolation that some oddsmakers in Vegas feel the same.
Which is not to mention that the pigskinners of my choice, overwhelming favorite Southern Mississippi, apparently forgot to wear their Brett Favre-Autographed© Copper Fit Tackling Gloves™, allowing South Alabama’s Jaguars to slip out of Forrest/Lamar Counties with an upset.
Which setback was so alarming to the powers that be in Hattiesburg, they fired Golden Eagles head coach Jay Hopson, after that opening L, despite his winning record and four bowl appearances.
He is not alone. If only for PR purposes, and to pass the proverbial buck, I too have cleaned house here at Seedy K Enterprises. Among the dispatched, Leonard Pynth Garnell III, Director of Theasaural Didactics, and Malcom Univac, Director of Analytical Computer Optimization.
Memphis State and SMU did prevail.
Thus I stand, after starting the weekend 0-1, 2-4.
With the understanding that one never knows which teams are going to be undermanned and/or underprepared on game day, as several were Week I, and as many more shall be as the campaign unfolds, here’s forging ahead with this week’s “sure fire” winners:
Charlotte @ Appalachian State. App State, as we wags are wont to say when we are at our most literate, has some kinda football program. Since that ’07 W in the Big House — the first game televised on BTN — the Mountaineers have turned Boone, N.C. into Football Country. In the last five years, they’re 52-12 with five straight bowl wins. Though they’ve got lots of experience returning, and all that tradition, they’ve lost their league’s OPOY and DPOY. Plus Shawn Clark is their third coach in as many seasons. The 49ers, newcomers to FBS themselves, are up and comers. They won five straight to end last regular season, to sneak into a bowl slot. Home team slips by in a close one.
Tulane @ South Alabama. When recently discussing with a fellow chinstrapper, the oft criticized prematurity of the Big Ten to postpone its season, I felt compelled to cite, as I often do, what I feel to be the singular most boneheaded decision ever in college football. To wit, Tulane resigning from the SEC in 1965, to broaden its schedule nationally. A not so Wave of Green ensued. But Willie Fritz has led the St. Charles gang to consecutive winning campaigns and bowl Ws for the first time since Governor Kingfish was assassinated. The Jaguars are feelin’ alright, what with their upset over Southern Miss. I’m inclined to go with Tulane, but in the back of my head I hear the admonishing words of a former president, “There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.” I foolishly picked against South Alabama once. Yet here I go doing it again.
Georgia Tech @ Florida State. The Seminoles, once the bastion of consistency during the 34 year reign of Bobby Bowden, have now had four coaches in four years. Jimbo Fisher’s abdication, when A & M showed him the money, started the turmoil. Is Mike Norvell, The Next Big Thing? A savior? The Third Coming? The pigskin universe will get its first glimpse this weekend. In Tallahassee, where there was going to be tailgating, but now, thanks to wiser heads prevailing, there will not be. More pertinent is whether James Blackmon, Jordan Travis or Chubba Purdy can begin to commence to start to lead the school back to glory? Also, on the other sideline, whether in Year II, Tech’s Geoff Collins can turn the corner and lead his charges to more Ramblin’ than Wreck? The latter won’t happen this time around in Doak S. Campbell Stadium.
Clemson @ Wake Forest. Should somehow, someway, the Demon Deacons win this game, it will be the final, undeniable harbinger of a Wacky Season Like No Other. As if we need more proof. That conjecture presented, the Tigers, mentored by the formerly charming, but increasingly annoying Dabo Swinney, will have their way.
Western Kentucky @ Louisville. Cardinal fans beware. This one’s far from a gimme. Even last season, when the resurgent Cardinals showed a bit more against the Toppers than in their escape in ’18, the last W of that season, it was far from a walkover by U of L. In a recent article which listed the cream of the up and coming assistants in the land, Louisville DC Bryan Brown was in the Top 10. But one spot above him was Topper DC Clayton White. Who has all of his starters, all seniors, returning. A big question for the Cardinal Nation is, who will be on the PA mic, intoning, “Another . . . (Cards first down)!” Of which there shall be enough, along with touchdowns, for Louisville to secure victory.
On occasion on a whim, without any explanation necessary, I’ll choose to predict the winner of a 6th game. Because . . . well . . . I can.
Extra Point: Missouri State @ Oklahoma. I’m going with this game and the highly favored Sooners for a couple reasons. Which should be self evident, but I’ll elucidate anyway. 1) Boomer Sooner is a monster favorite, and they can’t lose — kinda like Michigan playing App State in ’07 — and I can use the Extra Point, given my oh so very slow start. 2) The Bears new head coach is one Robert Patrick Petrino, and just watching him fume while stalking the sidelines while his team is getting battered by one wearing red will be oh so fulfilling.
— c d kaplan