Sunday, November 20, 2005

College Football, Brought To You By

by BH

It's always fun to read what is reporting on Sunday morning, following Saturday's college football games. Usually it involves some sort of knee-jerk reactivity, dramatization, and reminder that ESPN is the director and pulse for the sports world.'s Heisman Watch had this to say about Reggie Bush's performance against Fresno State:

Simply amazing. Bush literally did it all on Saturday. Can you say Heisman? Bush's record-setting game against Fresno State is the kind of performance that sways Heisman voters.

Really? He literally did it all? He kicked a field goal? He threw a touchdown? He was even the waterboy? He really does deserve the Heisman then. I can occasionally forgive the misuse of literally, especially in a situation like this. He did look like the Heisman Trophy winner during this game, racking up well over 500 all-purpose yards. I don't need ESPN to tell me this though. Is it the kind of performance that sways Heisman voters? I don't know. I guess we'll see when the trophy is presented. Thanks for being mind readers and passing it on to the rabble though.

There has been some attention paid to the University of South Florida, where the Bulls are getting closer to a Big East title and an automatic BCS Bowl berth. Bulls players are paying attention to those who think a weak team shouldn't get an automatic bid in the BCS for winning a weak conference.

"We feed off that," reserve cornerback D'Juan Brown said Saturday after returning an interception for a touchdown to help the Bulls beat Cincinnati 31-16 for their third straight Big East win.

Hmm. I've kind of always been more of a fan of the athletes who go out there and do what they can to win because they expect that of themselves. I'm a fan of the guys who put their best effort on the field because they want to go home at night and say, "I worked as hard as I could today." I'm a little less into the guys who try to win so they can show others.

"I kind of like coming in as an underdog and just getting it done. ... There's no stopping us right now."

I don't know. I mean, you're the University of South Florida. If you do make it to a BCS bowl, it's likely you'll face a team like Notre Dame or LSU or Oregon, or, you know, someone good. You did beat Louisville, a team that at the time was overrated at #9. I don't know though. Those wins against Syracuse and Cincy don't really convince me of your invicibility.

If the Bulls win at Connecticut next Saturday and defeat West Virginia at home on Dec. 3, USF would be assured of at least a tie for the conference title and represent the league in the BCS.

Seems do-able.

"That'll mess up the nation for a little bit," Hall said. "That's what I want to do."

No, dude, it won't mess up the nation. You don't run the Federal Reserve. You play football. Some guys on ESPN will have something to talk about but, really, it's not a travesty. It's how things are when people do things like make deals with conferences that no longer have powerhouse teams. Please though, don't overestimate your influence over the rest of college football, or college football's influence over the country. We all made it through Pitt making a BCS bowl last year.

Now, on to the Tennessee/Vanderbilt game.

The Volunteers (4-6, 2-5) will finish without a winning record and not be eligible for a bowl for the first time since 1988, another crushing blow in the worst season in coach Phillip Fulmer's 14-year tenure. Tennessee finishes the season next week at Kentucky.

"Before you start building back anything, you have to hit rock bottom. This is rock bottom," Fulmer said. "We had plenty of opportunities to win the game. We didn't make the plays to do that."

Wow, talk about giving the other team some credit. "They sucked. They really sucked, and we should have beat them. I mean, look how bad they sucked. Do they even have players on scholarship? Did you see the way they just turned their backs to us when ran an offensive play? We still couldn't get into the endzone. And our defense. Guh. Vandy would snap the ball, fumble it twelve times, and still get into the endzone. Yeah, we were the better team. I think that was a junior college team in Vanderbilt uniforms. This is rock bottom. Tennessee football can't get any lower than this."

"It's tough. We should have stepped up and stopped them," Tennessee linebacker Jason Mitchell said. "It doesn't feel good to come in as the No. 3-ranked team in the nation and not be bowl eligible."

Well, actually, it's been a while since you were the #3 team in the country. If you're still thinking about that, no wonder you and the rest of the Vols have had rough year.

The Vols' defense, which has kept the team afloat all season, failed in the end.

Classic ESPN. The Vols lost, so the defense failed in the end. Let's see. Vandy got the ball let's say (and I'm guessing here, hopefully conservatively) eleven times over the course of the game. They scored four times. Gimme a second here. Let me get me pencil and some paper. The Vols defense stopped Vandy from getting into the end zone 64% of the time. That's not failing. That's a strong "D." That was passing at my school. Seriously though ESPN. Maybe we could see it as Vandy's offense having had a good game and succeeding, rather than heaping a load on Tennesse's defense.

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