I normally deride the invisible corporate television hand that controls college football scheduling, but I would like to thank the cabal for arranging the first Ohio State game of the year on Thursday.
People think I'm a homer. Nah, I used to be.
Used to wake up and drink malt liquor in parking lots and not care if I woke up Sunday. Now I "work" covering the local team, and Buckeye Saturdays equate to cheap RTs and 12-hour work days to true fans refeshed.
But not today. Thanks to the scheduling lords, I can treat today like a true college football fan. I am drafting in an NFL computer football league at noon (please put any PPR sleepers [and only sleepers] in the comments, please) before throwing itinerary into the wind.
Give me Temple, Appalachian State (+14½), Purdue (+25) and Florida State.
|TIME (ET)||MATCHUP||FAVORITE||TV CHANNEL|
|12:00||BOWLING GREEN at MICHIGAN STATE||MSU (-17½)||ESPNU|
|3:30||UTEP at No. 7 OKLAHOMA||OU (-43)||FOX|
|3:30||No. 11 MICHIGAN vs. No. 17 FLORIDA||UM (-5½)||ABC|
|3:30||TEMPLE at NOTRE DAME||ND (-18½)||NBC|
|6:15||APPALACHIAN STATE at No. 15 GEORGIA||UGA (-14½)||ESPN|
|7:30||No. 16 LOUISVILLE vs. PURDUE||UL (-25)||FOX|
|8:00||No. 3 FLORIDA STATE vs. No. 1 ALABAMA||BAMA (-7)||ABC|
|9:30||BRIGHAM YOUNG vs. No. 13 LOUISIANA STATE||LSU (-14½)||ESPN|
Bonus bet: Temple (+18½).
Word of the Day: Volition.
Video of the Day: Sound on.
I made this to commemorate the greatest big man touchdown of all time pic.twitter.com/dXJPer7jKx— Sam Faulkner (@SamYewWell) September 1, 2017
TOUCHÉ, PARRIS. Parris Campbell dropped a wide-open touchdown pass in the first half against Indiana.
I won't lie. I had some takes for the #television when that happened. Namely, demanding Meyer deploy Demario McCall, the greatest football player in Ohio State history (Vic Janowicz No. 2; Chic Harley No. 3).
But Campbell rebounded. And he did it in a way that made dipshit critics like me say, "Wow. That's why Meyer raves about him."
From Spencer Hall of edsbs.com (click for the Huey Long lesson):
Last night I got to watch Ohio State play Indiana. This was not a watershed game. Don’t try to say it’s a moment: Indiana is not a great football team, and Ohio State is stocked with the kinds of 18-22 year olds most likely to be selected for the team Earth sends to fight in the intergalactic Hunger Games. One of them is Parris Campbell, who dropped a wide open score in the endzone, then ripped off a dazzlingly fast TD reception when he caught a short pass, broke across the field and turned upwards, leaving slower, more mortal Indiana defenders gasping in his wake.
There is something singularly beautiful about the play, and something collectively beautiful in the play beheld together. It is a commonality, an imperfect connection, but a connection. It is not common ground overtly decided on by debate and contract. It is a shared experience that happens at a level so passive and yet immediate that it bypasses immediate comprehension. It is, even on a Thursday night, chain lightning.
Oh, and the play, the one where Parris Campbell scored against Indiana? It’s not exactly the same as the one I couldn’t stop thinking about all year. I can’t tell where #83 comes from at all here, for instance, or where he even lined up at all. It’s a variation, but right there, in the middle of the defense, there are two receivers crossing, and Parris Campbell popping free and blazing down the sideline.
That ended the game. After that, Indiana knew it had no chance minutes after feeling like winning was its destiny.
That's what the Big Ballers do... or so I've read in the autobiographies of Big Ballers.
BAPTISM BY BACK SHOULDER DARTS. I credited Indiana's coaching staff yesterday. I also want to credit future NFL Hall of Famers Richard Lagow, Simmie Cobbs, and Luke Timian (among others).
The Hoosiers couldn't run the ball. Yet Lagow threw darts and his receivers made circus catches look routine.
Ohio State defensive backs weren't perfect. But, again, they didn't have to be.
“Our defense was exposed big-time in the first half,” he said. “Our pass defense was awful. It was not complicated. They were just picking on the corners. The corners have got to step up.”
Ohio State’s defense is based on having its cornerbacks play press, man-to-man coverage. Meyer said that coaches felt it necessary to call more conventional coverages in the second half.
“We’re certainly not going to give up on some guys, but for Kendall Sheffield, it was his first extended playing time,” Meyer said. “Damon Arnette, at that position, first extended playing time. Denzel Ward should have probably played better than he (did).”
Ward deserves singular praise. He flashed why he's one of the top NFL prospects despite falling victim to a few aforementioned darts.
No doubt Oklahoma will come out next week and attempt to replicate that success. I'm thankful Buckeyes play the Sooners next week as opposed to Army or UNLV. All big questions will be resolved at the end of that game.
BURN EVERYTHING. Ezekiel Elliott's appeal drags on. Elliott and the NFLPA sued the NFL alleging a conspiracy to snuff Elliott's appeal process.
Eleven Warriors reader BAR43 gave a convincing case about the NFL's ineptitude in the handling of the investigation.
But leaks work both ways. Friday, the NFL struck back. It leaked the entire report, which despite NFL inconsistencies, doesn't paint Elliott in the best late.
Of course, because this is the world in which we dwell, the big mainstream media headline is a grown man admitting he tried and enjoyed drugs in college.
While under oath and being cross-examined by an NFL attorney, Elliott was asked about his social life.
"I do like to party," he said.
Attorney: And like to get drunk?
Attorney: You like to do drugs?
Elliott: I did in college.
This is big news, obviously, because Elliott would be the first college football player to enjoy partying. Let's hope the FBI doesn't investigate the matter.
Jokes aside, the NFL's ineptitude undermined its investigation. No way Elliott serves six games now given the exposed clown show.
What a mess.
FLORIDA, FOREVER SALTY. Michigan is in a bad spot tonight because if it wins, it should have. If it doesn't, well, it won't like what happens next.
I don't mind Florida as a team anymore. I exorcised those demons. But their fans? Thousands of forlorn Florida fans would be the silver lining of any Michigan win.
Few Florida fans would question Meyer’s excellence as a recruiter or ability to coach sound, winning football. No one would give back the two national titles he won, either. But few would defend the nature Meyer’s dramatic departure — twice, don't forget — or how he sullied the program’s reputation enabling some of his top players, most notably Aaron Hernandez.
Meyer left with Will Muschamp issues on and off field, and the Gators never have been the same. Muschamp inherited a program without a future quarterback, explosive playmakers or enough offensive linemen. The culture of entitlement under Meyer was as big an issue for Muschamp, who earned praise for shaping up the Gators but simply did not win enough.
Florida football has never returned to the heights it reached under Meyer, and might never again. But two national titles in three seasons, an offense featuring Tim Tebow and Percy Harvin, and a defense stocked with NFL talent will not be Meyer's sole legacy. Many Gator fans who celebrate those years feel conflicted.
In Gators fans' defense: This writer took an entire fan base on his back without quoting a fan.
Still, these words ring true in my heart. Am I biased? Sure. Do I care? Nah.
DUDE NAMED KYLER SUPPLANTS BASIC QB. Don't summon "basic defense" jokes this week. That's in the past. The quarterback who uttered the words won't play in Columbus as a former Texas A&M QB supplanted him.
Ohio State by 21+. Save this tweet.
THOSE WMDs. Human mood drugs end up in Great Lakes fish... Two Northern California pot growers accused of offering sheriff $1 million bribe... The last Nazi Hunters... The story of September 26, 2014, the day 43 students went missing... Has Lane Kiffin finally grown up?