It’s a Christmas Eve tradition… gathering around the fire with family, celebrating the sacred moments of a fun, old fashioned holiday, and watching unbearably crappy football to avoid conversation with that one uncle who’s been at the egg nog since noon.
The History: Did you know that there used to be two games in Hawaii… but they moved one to Seattle for a while? Yup, hopes of heading to Honolulu in December dashed by the “better coffee” of the Pacific Northwet. This game was also a “slump-buster” of sorts, where Pickles broke the 9 game losing streak that the Irish carried through the Weis years. Giveaways for this “opportunity” include an ‘aloha’ shirt, a ‘custom’ beach towel, backpack and watch, and a calendar. Can’t go wrong with that, now can you?
SMU Scouting Report- SMU really struggled this year, as June Jones tries to rebuild the program following an amazing 30 for 30. Their biggest “win” was a 72-42 victory over Houston, but they also have losses against aTm, Baylor, and TCU on their schedule (teams with a pulse). QB Gilbert has thrown for over 2700 yards, and has a couple of Johnsons as targets- Darius and Jeremy share the load in the air. They’re averaging just under 30 points a game, but are in the bottom of the nation in points allowed this season.
Buckeye Connection- Ohio State is 7-1-1 against the Mustangs, with the last meeting being the 35-35 tie in 1978. This season, I’d expect an OSU/SMU game to look a little bit like the Illinois game- I don’t think the Mustangs have the horses to stop Ohio State’s offense, and certainly couldn’t keep up on defense.
Fresno Scouting Report – While the Bulldogs fell to both ranked teams they faced this year, they certainly proved that they can score some points, averaging over 40 points per game, and hanging 50 or more on both Colorado, San Diego State, and annual thorn in their side Nevada. There’s another Carr in the building- Junior QB Derek is the youngest brother of former #1 pick David… wonder what ever happened to that guy? They’re 12th in the nation in passing yards per game behind Carr, although Robbie Rouse has also amassed over 1200 yards on the ground this season. Oh, and Pat Hill still has an awesome mustache… but he’s no longer the Bulldogs coach (OL with the Falcons)- that distinction belongs to Tim DeRuyter.
Buckeye Connection- OSU is still 2-0 all time against the Bulldogs… and that wouldn’t change this season, using the Michigan State > Boise > Fresno crappy logic that transcends this time of the year.
Predictions: Here’s what we think will happen
I honestly believe that Fresno has the better team, but there’s no way I’m picking them given our history together.