If Mississippi State QB bulls his way into the end zone on that last play against Auburn, I go 5-0. Sigh, the vagaries of trying to nostradamus the future. That disappointment notwithstanding, the kid did rebound for a 4-1 weekend, putting me at 6-4 on the season.
No reason to beat around the bush anymore. Let’s get this week’s party started.
LSU @ Mississippi State. My oh my do the Bulldogs seem to be a team on the verge. That said, Dan Mullen’s charges can’t . . . quite . . . seem . . . to . . . break . . . through. Astute commentator Robert Smith said it best on the Deuce last weekend. The team doesn’t seem prepared to handle their lofty expectations. Their final drive against Auburn was a thing of beauty, mature almost, but, alas, fell short. Rival Ole Miss is the only SEC division rival the Starkvillites have conquered during the Mullen Era. Meanwhile Les Miles never ceases to amaze. His Bayou Bengals somehow seem to just about always find a way to the W. Despite what would appear to be boneheaded strategical maneuvers by their slightly off kilter coach. It’s Thursday Night. The whole football universe will be tuned in. Will Mississippi State muster enough cowbell to break on through to the other side? Are the Cotton Staters ready for prime time? I’d love to say yes, but . . . I . . . just . . . don’t . . . think . . . so.
West Virginia @ Maryland. If the sports apparel shop would have had ‘em, I’d a bought one. A Maryland Terrapins jersey, that is. Those jerseys they wore against Miami were sooooooo outré. But the store didn’t sell Under Armour items. The Michigan and Notre Dame throwbacks didn’t cut it. The Terps had last weekend off, after outlasting beleaguered, undermanned U in its opener. West Virginia has blasted two less than stellar foes. Still the Mountaineers’ performances underscore why Bill Stewart is out and offensive guru Dana Holgorsen is in. A Lucky move by the AD? I don’t think so. This is the proverbial Big Important Game for the BEast. Almost Heaven prevails. But I can’t wait to see what Maryland’s wearing when it takes the field.
Michigan State @ Notre Dame. Is there anything we can learn from these schools’ performances last weekend? Yes, in the Spartans’ case. The time was right for The Schnell to retire. And that Michigan State can batter a patsy as badly as it’s supposed to. As for Notre Dame, it’s harder to tell. F-Bomb Kelly was a helluva coach at Central Michigan and Cincy. Has he lost his touch? How many inexplicable red zone errors can a team make? In ND’s case: A lot. Is it possible that BCS bowl moguls will suffer their cherished Irish totally blowing up at 0-3? I think so. It may be wishful thinking but I say the green flag’s waving when this one’s done won’t be for the Irish.
Texas @ UCLA. There was a time when this one would have been the featured Game of the Week on TV. Lindsay Nelson in the booth from the Rose Bowl. No more. The last time Hook ‘Em Horns visited Pasadena, Colt McCoy went down and, along with him, Texas’s BCS title hopes. During this visit, his younger brother will be wondering whether he’ll start and/ or how much PT Mack Brown will give him? UCLA has for whatever reason been mostly irrelevant for some time now. Rick “Pass Me The Bracket” Neuheisel, alum and former QB, was hired to be the savior. His 16-23 record in Westwood is not exactly John Wooden quality. It doesn’t even meet Bob Toledo standards. That former Bruin coach went 49-32 before he was shown the exit. For one week only, Rick’s able to keep his finger in the dike. For some reason, I like the Bruins.
Louisville @ Kentucky. I do know one thing for sure. Even U of L fans have to be happy this wasn’t the opening game of the season. Though, that said, allow me to opine one more once, this game should always be either the first or last game of the year. Period. There’s no reason for me to break this one down, since you’ve already done that yourselves. (Not that I do much of that anyway.) The Law of Averages says the Cards are due. Vegas says the Cats by a smidge less than a TD. The performances so far on the field tell us little, other than that UK has found a way to 2 Ws, twice as many as U of L. Crazy things happen in rivalry games. This time, Averages (Law of) beat Oddsmakers. U of L will prevail in a game that will be more competitive than competent.
– Seedy K