Great week to be on a bye- Three undefeateds and a top ten team lost, and two other top 10 teams struggled… And, as much as I hate to admit it, only one song came to mind for Monday’s soundtrack. Enjoy.
Of course we’re going to start off in Happy Valley, where Michigan’s Brady Hoke continued his longstanding legacy of struggling on the road. As excellent as the Wolverines have been at home under his tenure *coughhomecookingcough* he’s only 6-8 on the road, including a nailbiter of a win against something called a UConn this season.
Hats off to the Penn State coaching staff, who essentially nullified Michigan’s running game- Toussiant and Green had 30 rushes for 28 yards. And big kudos to the Lion’s Christian Hackenburg and Allen Robinson, who made big plays late to tie the game and send it into what would be four overtimes.
But “player of the game” award goes to that upstanding citizen Brendan Gibbons, who missed three of four field goals, including big shanks in overtime and a kick at the end of regulation that was just short. Penn State played to win, Michigan played not to lose and still managed to do so. The Lions will now have a bye week before heading to Columbus to face Ohio State in what’s sure to be a hard fought battle.
Because I’m a petty person, we’ll be enjoying visual reminders of this game throughout the rest of this post… but let’s talk about the other games of note.
We’ve talked before about “Big Game Bob” and the pass that Coach Stoops gets in spite of some collapses on the national stage; recently, though, his Sooners have made hay in the Red River Shootout at the expense of a down Texas program. So much so, in fact, that they even tried to make a clever graphic about it- it was assumed that yesterday’s game would be the final straw to lead to Mack Brown getting the Lane Kiffin treatment on the grounds of the Texas State Fairground. Funny thing about narratives, though…
Not only did Texas dominate the Sooners from the opening snap on their way to a 36-20 victory, they also gave us that greatest of college football gifts: a fat guy touchdown. Enjoy the majesty:
Monday’s menagerie of thoughts and wonderings on Saturday’s shenanigans comes with music. It was an “ugly” weekend, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t make a silk purse out of it all.
Before we dive into the scores, it’s important to remember how trivial college athletics is in the big picture of things. Unfortunately, this is only brought home when we remember the frailty of life, and there were three chances for reflection this weekend.
Ohio State started with a tribute to Columbus Newscaster Dom Tiberi’s daughter Maria, who lost her life in a traffic accident this week.
UCLA followed suit later on Saturday with a 10 man play from scrimmage to honor wide receiver Nick Pasquale, who was killed in a traffic event last week.
And sadly, we found out on Sunday that Cincinnati freshman Ben Flick died after yet another motor vehicle incident.
Again, football is fun… but it ain’t life.
Let’s stay in the Buckeye State with a reminder of the awesomeness that Ohio State unleashed on Saturday. Sure, it was an undermatched opponent, but that doesn’t mean that the game was insignificant for those that played in it. And, while this was the best block of the week by FAR, the game was not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. Ohio State did allow ten runs and have two errors in the victory.
PS- I didn’t know that Pam Oliver was a Cal grad. At least TBDBITL seems to think so and responded to criticism in a different way than Charles did earlier.
Ken will be by later to respond to those pundits who seem to have issues with Ohio State’s 76 point victory, but I’ll add only this- I sure don’t hear any bitching about Baylor or Louisville or Miami doing the same on Saturday, and when Oregon did it earlier in the year against an FCS program, they jumped Ohio State in the polls.
You know who doesn’t have a problem with playing until the final gun? The Pirate Cap’n… that’s who.
As you can see up there in the right corner, Coach Kelly and the Irish are celebrating another win in the very friendly confines of South Bend. And by “very friendly”, I mean the kind of affectionate that allows a receiver to climb over the back of a defender and still benefit from the pass interference call. The “Sparty NO!” moment might have happened as soon as Michigan State left the locker room; it’s certainly an uphill battle when you’re playing 11 on 16. Read More
Where to start, where to start.
Alabama got revenge, Michigan almost got upset by Akron, Texas still can’t play defense and Nebraska, well, Bo Pelini better have his resume updated.
But we must start with the odd finish to the Wisconsin-Arizona State game in the wee hours of Sunday morning.
The Sun Devils led 32-30 in the waning moments. The Badgers had executed the 2-minute drive to near perfection and were in position to attempt a game-winning field goal.
Yawn, yawn. Sounds like a typical game. OK, here’s where it got weird.
Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave did something that resembled a stumble, kneel down or plopping down of the ball.
Perhaps his knee touched, perhaps there was a whistle. Arizona State players saw a loose ball and hopped on it, and stayed on it.
The officials eventually decided it was still Wisconsin’s ball, but time ran out before the Badgers could get the field goal unit ready.
Problem is, according to the rule book, the officials should have been flagged for illegal procedure because they gaffed big time.
Worse than Leon Lett in the Super Bowl. Worse than Ray Finkle and the laces facing the wrong way (thanks Marino). Worse than Marty Mornhinweg electing to kick after winning the OT coin toss.
According to an excerpt from rule 4-1-3-o “A live ball becomes dead and an official shall sound his whistle or declare it dead: When a ball carrier simulates placing his knee on the ground.”
Stave was attempting to take a knee. This much we know. So he was down and either ASU should have been hit with a delay of game or the crew should have stopped the clock to sort it all out.
Oops. Read More
Given the rain delay in the BYU /UT game this week and the deluge of rushing that befell the Longhorns after kickoff, there’s only one option for this week’s soundtrack.
See, this is why there should be no polls before the first weekend in October.
Once again, we see a number of teams that got votes due to their “name recognition” shown up early in the season, and others who are rising to the occasion still find themselves with a long way to go until November.
Cases in point: Texas, Notre Dame, Florida, and Southern Cal; all of whom lost on the same Saturday for the first time since September 11, 1976.
For the Longhorns, it’s been a slide into mediocrity for a while now. I’m not sure that people really understand the significance of the Mack Brown era… As the flagship school in of the top three recruiting hotbeds in the country, Brown’s teams have historically underwhelmed with the exception of two “lightening in a bottle” moments- Vince Young and Colt McCoy. Outside of their leadership behind center, the program has struggled; and it can be argued that some of this is due to poor coaching (see the Major Applewhite -vs- Chris Sims debacle) or poor recruiting (Texas recruited the last two Heisman winners as defensive backs, and didn’t reach out to Jamies Winston- this year’s new hotness).
While those things may be true, Mack seems to think that the issue is defense; as evidenced by the 550 yards rushing that they gave up to BYU on Saturday, the majority of which happened in the first three quarters. In response, Defensive Coordinator Manny Diaz was fired on Sunday. Before you get excited, Austinites- his replacement is none other than Greg “GERG” Robinson, who’s amazing Michigan defenses gave up over 100 points in two games against Illinois. I’m sure he’ll get the team motivated to return to the lofty status that UT should assume.
But you’ve also got to think that this is merely shuffling chairs on the Titanic- when your team plays so poorly that Shaggy Bevo’s servers go down as they did on Sunday, then you’ve got yourself a problem. Read More
We’re getting close to kickoff time and with the start of the regular season comes anticipation of The Game.
So with that in mind, let’s celebrate the No. 3, the margin of victory in The Game of the Century: OSU 42, Michigan 39 on Nov. 18, 2006.
OSU came in No. 1 in every poll. Michigan came in at No. 2. The winner would be assured of a spot in the BCS National Championship Game.
Like the game needed more hype, right?
Well, former Michigan head coach (and former OSU assistant) Bo Schembechler unexpectedly died the day before the game.
It was the first time The Game featured two undefeated teams ranked 1-2 in the country.
OK, enough hype. Read More
While camp is in session over at the WHAC, it’s important to remember that in 1936 another Buckeye was rocking the world this week. By this time that year, Jesse Owens had already won three of his four gold medals in the 100 and 200m, as well as the long jump; the fourth would come on August 8th. So, as excited as we are for the speed that OSU has gained on it’s football team, it’s important to also remember someone who was so talented that he broke another barrier. Today’s soundtrack is a song that was at the top of the charts in both Europe and the United State in 1936 as well… pretty appropriate for August.
The most important game of the season for any Ohio State fan or player is the annual season ending showdown against Michigan. Over the years the two teams have produced numerous unforgettable games with conference or national titles on the line and the 2005 showdown between 9th ranked Ohio State and 17th ranked Michigan was no exception. The Buckeyes entered Ann Arbor riding a five game winning streak and needing a win to claim a share of the Big Ten title while Michigan was on a four game winning streak and needed a win and a Penn State loss later in the day for a share of the conference title.
Ohio State would get out to a 6-0 lead thanks to a short run by Troy Smith midway through the first quarter however John Huston’s point after failed. Huston would make amends with a 42 yard field goal early in the second quarter to extend the Buckeye lead to 9-0. After a Michigan touchdown cut into the OSU lead, Huston made a last second field goal to give the Buckeyes a 12-7 advantage as the two teams headed to the locker room.
The second half got off to a bad start for the Buckeyes as they fumbled deep in their own territory on their first possession, giving Michigan great field position. While the OSU defense managed to limit the Wolverines to just a field goal, the momentum swung solidly in Michigan’s direction. The OSU offense continued to struggle and another miscue, this time a poor punt, once again gave Michigan the ball in OSU territory and this time they capitalized with a touchdown and a two point conversion to take an 18-12 lead late in the third quarter. The OSU offense finally got something going on their next drive but it was all for not as they missed a 46 yard field goal. The Wolverines got a chance to try a field goal of their own on the ensuing drive and they converted to extend their lead to 21-12 midway through the fourth quarter.
Gary Russell and I are covering the B1G Tourney live again although it’s not actually from Chicago! Some last minute travel plans fell apart and we are hanging out at his house in Zanesville covering the games! Hope you enjoy the updates!
#6 Iowa versus #11 Northwestern
The first half of the day one night cap has been all Iowa. They hold a 36-22 lead at halftime and the score doesn’t reflect how dominating the Hawkeyes have been. The Wildcats didn’t score until the 12:30 mark of the first half. Iowa has been very balanced on the offensive end. 8 different players have scored for the Hawkeyes, and none of socred more than 7 points. As painful as it is to say, Iowa’s Aaron White leads all scorers with 7 points. Northwestern is being led by Freshman Alex Olah’s 6 points.
Iowa didn’t quite dominate the second half like they did the first half as they did their best impression of Michigan in letting a team hang around. The Wildcats refused to go away getting the lead under ten several times and even down to seven at one point. Unfortunately for Northwestern, timely three point shooting from Mike Gesell and Roy Devyn Marble combined with a Flagrant One foul by Reggi Hearn kept pushing the Iowa lead back to double digits. In the end, Iowa knocked off Northwestern 73-59.
Iowa will now face Michigan State tomorrow evening at apprixmately 9:00 EST. We hope you enjoyed day 1 of the Big Ten Tournament. Remember to check back with us tomorrow as we update with all the action from Day 2 of the tournament! Read More