I haven't written much lately. Or even mustered the effort to pull a Teej and throw up two sentences and a YouTube clip. I have baby in my house now. That's the ultimate excuse. Who questions someone when they blow something off and then drop a baby related excuse? Nobody, that's who. Plus, my kid is fucking lazy. She just sleeps and eats and shits. She can't even walk yet. She's 7 months old!! Lay. Zee. Anwyay, enough about my kid. I'm not hanging out with her anymore. Because college football is back and I've got better shit to do. I was so excited about it that I stopped paying attention to that needy kid a day early and actually wrote something. Ten Reasons to be even more enthused than you already were that college football is back. Or as Ron Zook would say, 'Footbaw! TEN THINGS!!!'
This list is in no particular order of importance. In fact, if the order of these items matters that much to you then just go ahead and assign them an order yourself. I’m really too fired up at the thought of all the beer, food and couch time coming my way this weekend to be bothered with these types of details.
- The Return of Steve Spurrier press conferences: One day, we’ll look back on the performances of Steve Spurrier during his interactions with the media and we’ll finally realize what a gift he was. Sure, we appreciate his Tennessee drawl and acerbic wit now but we’re never, ever, ever getting another high profile coach who so openly trolls not just his opponent but so often his own players with the skill, edge and general fuck-offedness of Steven Orr Spurrier. For shit’s sake, this is a man who once remarked about a fire at the Auburn Library (paraphrasing), “That’s a real shame. I heard some of those books hadn’t even been colored in yet.” Will Spurrier be possibly a tad less entertaining now that Stephen Garcia is no longer around to show up to practice drunk and wearing flip flops? Probably. But that still makes him more fun than 99.99% of the coaches in College Football.
- Urban Meyer’s return/slow descent into madness: On the other end of the Head Coach press conference spectrum is another former University of Florida Head Coach, Urban Meyer. Meyer is a near polar opposite of Spurrier in attitude and demeanor. Especially around the media. He prefers to give out as little info as possible and would refuse to do any press conferences altogether if he could get away with it. Want proof? See Tuesday’s short lived decision to ban the use of Twitter by any reporters who were attending Meyer’s press conferences at Ohio State. Meyer nearly killed himself (or at least almost gave himself a really bad ulcer) at Florida due, in large part, to his control freak nature and that’s only going to be magnified at Ohio State where he’ll be the most important person on campus, in town and (most likely) in the whole damn state. Meyer’s going to try and control it all. But you can’t control 18-22 year olds, or the national media covering them. Not a chance. So enjoy the ride folks. Meyer’s going to lose his shit in a major way down the road. Ohio State will be really, REALLY good before it happens. But its gonna happen. Maybe not this year but you’ll at least see the early signs of it.
- Jadeveon Clowney at MLB: If you’re not familiar with Jadeveon Clowney you should really pay more attention to the SEC. Clowney is a 19 year old manbeast who was the #1 recruit in the nation coming out of high school. Clowney, a 6'6"- 260 lb. defensive end, was recruited by every school in the nation but chose to stay home in South Carolina. He arrived on campus last summer and was almost immediately named a starter. To no one’s surprise, Clowney showed during the season that he deserved the spot by notching 8 sacks as a true freshman. So, the mere thought of a more seasoned, mature, stronger Clowney was enough to put the fear of god in every QB in the SEC. And that was before reports of Clowney possibly playing some MLB in specific packages for South Carolina this season. Will it happen? If there’s a God it will.
- Daydrinking: Few of us here at G:TB need an excuse to daydrink, but it never hurts to have one. And few things provide a better excuse for excessive daydrinking as College Football. I suggest you stock up accordingly.
- Boise State enters the post Kellen Moore era: As a graduate of the University of Florida, I only truly root for my alma mater when it comes to college football. That's exactly how it should be if you attended a school with a Division 1A (or whatever it's called now) football program. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t programs that I consistently enjoy watching. Chief among these programs is Boise State. Besides the inventive offense, the underdog dynamic, or even the understated (and might I add beautiful) color scheme they employ, there’s another angle to my semi-fandom for Boise State: I’ve been getting drunk with them for years. No really. Boise State rose to national prominence by playing as many nationally televised games as they possibly could. In the early 2000s this meant lots and lots of Friday night ESPN games. I just happened to be going to college during the early 2000s. Not coincidentally, I was usually getting drunk on Friday nights. And these nights usually started with some pregaming at the house while playing cards, dominoes and/or various drinking games while Boise State played some WAC foe in the background. So, you see, it’s like Boise State and I went to college together. Now, Kellen Moore wasn’t the Bronco QB then (it only feels like it). No, it was the legendary Jared Zabransky. Okay, maybe he wasn’t a legend but that awful tribal arm band tattoo will go down CFB history. Nevertheless, the point remains...I’ve watched a good deal of Boise State Football over the years and I’m quite interested to watch how Chris Peterson handles the transition. Boise State is a program now, not just one player BUUUUUT losing the winningest QB in CFB history (as well as breaking in a new offensive coordinator) is a huge transition. He's been your only QB for four years. You don't know what you have behind him and no matter how good the rest of the team is, if Moore’s replacement isn’t stellar there could be some bad losses ahead for this year’s Broncos (see: Florida, 1997).
- USC: Pretty simple here. USC is going to be really, really good this year. Possibly obscenely good. Their offense is going to put up video game numbers and they’re going to do that while Lane Kiffin struts the sidelines being as douchey as possible (He IS from Tampa, after all). Don’t you get the sense that Lane has been waiting for this year to stick it to every critic (and there are plenty) who has ever doubted his coaching chops? I certainly do. And if he’s going to do it, this is the year. He might have the best two WRs in the country, a stud running back he can thank the idiotic administration of Penn State for, his OLine is stocked and he’s got the best QB in CFB (though I’m not bullish on Matt Barkley as a pro prospect). If you’re a Lane hater, be careful out there this year. You might feel ill at one point or another. Hopefully, we can get some shots of Layla Kiffin a couple times a quarter to help ease the nausea.
Florda State’s inexplicable loss which knocks them out of the BCS Championship picture: Here’s the thing about FSU’s annual inexplicable loss..it’s completely explicable. Florida State hasn’t even been good, I mean truly elite in a decade. As a matter of fact, they haven't even won an ACC Championship since 2005. And I don't think I have to remind you that the ACC isn't exactly made up of a murderer's row of college football programs. Yet somehow, every single year college football fans have to hear the “Is FSU back?” questions. Last year they were being touted as BCS Championship contenders with a QB (EJ Manuel) who was a Heisman contender. How'd that work out? Just stop. Please. I’ll believe Florida State is “back” when I see them go undefeated in the ACC. A tall order, to be sure, but I’m just demanding like that if I’m to believe that a program is back among the nation’s elite. (Full disclosure: I believe FSU’s defense will be very good this year and their offense has more talented playmakers than any point in recent memory BUT I still can’t buy them as a true contender until they stop dropping games to the Wake Forests, Boston Colleges and Marylands of the college football world.)
- Dana Holgorsen unleashed on the Big 12: No, Greg, this isn't like Lilith Unleashed. Dana Holgorsen is a modern college football treasure. He looks like Jame Gumb. Has hair that’s at times reminiscent of Ernie McCracken and he’s partial to binge drinking and being thrown out of casinos in the wee hours of the West Virginia morning. So pretty much the perfect head coach for West Virginia University. In case you’d forgotten, West Virginia is now a part of the Big 12. Or as I like to call it, PAC-10 2.0.
Her'e the thing about the Big 12: The quality of play is good. Really good. But elite Big 12 teams can't match up physically with elite SEC teams. It's the same every year recently. Big 12 teams put up absurd numbers against each other and we start to hear people wondering if that year's Big 12 team with the prolific offense could matchup with the SEC team du jour. Except, we already know how this turns out. The SEC wins. The Big 12 just doesn't play much defense in recent years. So that's why this is the perfect situation for Dana Holgorsen (who was an OC in the Big 12 for Oklahoma State) and the Mountaineers to step into. Now, Maybe I'm wrong and West Virginia will get a rude awakening moving from the Big East to the Big 12. And maybe we'll all see Big 12 defenses eat Holgorsen's version of the spread alive. However if, like me, you believe that won't happen then you’re pretty excited to see what a hungover Holgorsen and senior QB Geno Smith can do in their first year in the Big 12.
- The Return of Mike Leach: Sure his Washington State team got rolled by his alma mater, BYU, last night but we're all better for having Mike Leach back in our lives. The guy loves pirates. I mean REALLY loves Pirates. He has a law degree. No background as a collegiate football player whatsoever. He's suing the shit out of a fuck ton of people right now, including Craig James (who may or may not still be under investigation for killing five hookers) and global giant ESPN (not a person, I know). And oh yeah, his teams throw the ball all over the field and score loads of points. I mean, do I really need to go on? Mike Leach is back. And this is awesome.
- The Gator QB competition: You didn't think we were going to get through the whole list without something Gator related, did you? Of course not. With that said, this is actually a pretty big story. Whether you harbor a strangely fierce dislike for the University of Florida (Shlara) or you just dislike Florida because you always secretly wanted to be a UGA frat guy who wore red pants, new balances and croakies to football games (TR) or even if you have no soul and root for Alabama (Rob), I think we can all acknowledge that the position of QB at the University of Florida has been one of the more high profile positions in the last 20 years of College Football. I won't bore you with the hows and whys, but from the beginning of the Steve Spurrier era at Florida through the end of Tim Tebow's eligibility, Florida QBs have consistently found themselves in the spotlight (John Brantley was in a different, and unfortunate, type of spotlight). This year is no different. Except, it is. You see, there is no Gator QB. At least not yet. That's because Florida sophomores Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel are both still vying to be the starter. According to Head Coach Will Muschamp, each QB will play a quarter in the first half today and then the coaching staff will evaluate them at halftime. Great. I'm super confident in the offense.
It's not overly consequential that Will Muschamp can't decide on a QB this week against Bowling Green. But it sure as hell will be when the Gators go to College Station for the SEC opener vs. Texas A&M next week. Do I believe Muschamp when he says the QBs are about even? Yes. Do I believe he has confidence in both of them? Maybe. Shit, maybe he doesn't have confidence in either. And since Florida closes it's practices to fans and the media that's what we're all left to...guessing. We'll see them both play today and hopefully we'll see one guy emerge and take the starting job. Hopefully.