Here are some of the tidbits I found while sorting through the remains of this past weekend's college football feast. And yes I refuse to wait for FSU-Miami to play their game before posting this.
I have concluded that after hearing every five minutes Saturday night what a mastermind Charlie Weis is that we have been making a tragic mistake as a nation. Why should Weis' genius be focused on football alone? What would be the benefit to our world if Weis' mental prowess and aggressive nature were unleashed on the more pressing issues of our day? Seems like a waste to have a person so brillant spend his time coaching college football
All sarcasm aside, I do think Weis is a good coach(and gutsy one at that) though the constant glorification of his coaching abilities does get tiresome. One of the things I saw Saturday night which served as powerful evidence that Weis is ahead of many other coaches came from his handling of a 4th and 1 situation. Weis seems to have a grasp of which is the best play to call on 4th and 1 and that is almost inevitably a quarterback sneak. UNC's John Bunting, on the other hand, has a different take on 4th and 1. Bunting concluded that with the ball one foot from the goal line the smartest play would be to have the QB take the snap, bring the ball backwards away from the goal line and hand it to a running back who then ran head on into 11 Rutgers defenders all piled on top of the UNC offensive line. I mean why would Bunting do something as foolish as allowing UNC QB Joe Dailey to simply receive the snap, jump forward into the pile and extend the ball over the goal line to get the touchdown much the same way Brady Quinn took the snap and dove on top of the line for a crucial 1st down against Georgia Tech? They always say it comes down to the little things or in this case how little you know as a coach.
<rant>Can we get some kind of moratorium on the use of the words "courage" or "courageous" in reference to anything a college athlete does pertaining to his play on the field? ABC's Bob Davie pontificated on how he knew Brady Quinn was special because he was "courageous." The basis for this praise? The fact Davie witnessed Quinn endure 12 QB sacks against Purdue as a freshman and from that he continued to work hard and improve to reach Heisman candidacy. Let me clue you in on something Bob. Soldiers in Iraq are courageous. Firemen and police officers who routinely place their own lives at risk to keep innocent people from harm are courageous. Youth workers in the inner city who work tirelessly day in and day out for little pay to get young men out of gangs, off of drugs, and into school are the embodiment of courage. The starting quarterback for perhaps the most recognizable football program in the nation who bounces back from two rough years to fulfill his potential does not constitute courage. Is it evidence of determination and resilency? Yes, but by no means is it courageous. This is a young man who plays a game in which his risk of death much less injury is fairly low, goes to class which are in all likelihood not that taxing, and in his free time has not a care in this world. So to define Quinn's fight to overcome a little adversity on the football field courageous does not even pass the smell test. So if the broadcasters could spare the use of any words which place these players on the same level as people who really do face fear and danger on a daily basis. It is a game and in my opinion it does not take a lot of courage to play it.</rant>
Needless to say I am a little worried about Clemson's Tommy Bowden, who for reasons still unclear to me, went absolutely ballistic on the referees during the Tigers' 54-6 trouncing of lowly Florida Atlantic. If Tommy is ticked off enough to slam his headset to the ground(which struck an official on the way down) during a blowout then what can we expect in the bigger games coming up on the schedule? Will he be biting the heads of live chickens when Clemson plays FSU or if the refs miss a call in the Georgia Tech game might Tommy intentionally throw the headset at an official? Someone needs to tell Tommy that this is only the first game and he needs to save those quality tantrums when Daddy Bowden is on the other side of the field.
Now, at this point we are all aware of the exploits of Matt Leinert during his days as USC's starting QB. In fact just last week we were told that a young woman on the USC basketball team would be taking the season off so she could give birth to a child fathered by the party prone Mr. Leinert. So given Leinert's history of sexual activity, am I the only one who finds the name of his successor at USC to be somewhat comically ironic: John David Booty. That's right the player who succeeds Matt Leinert at USC has the last name of Booty. It is almost like they are honoring Leinert somehow. And no, you really cannot make this stuff up.
Not to keep harping on the GT-ND game or broadcast crew but if Brent Musburger had mentioned Columbus, GA or the LLWS winning team from that city once more I may have thrown my laptop through the TV screen. Musburger acts like no one heard him the first three times he said it or missed the part where they showed that team being recognized during the pregame. I know it was exciting to watch but you have to let it go.
Finally, I am instituting an official "Lee Corso Sanity Meter" which I will use to rate how in touch with reality I think ESPN's Lee Corso is during his broadcast appearances. So with on a scale of 0-10 with 0 being completely rational and 10 being stark naked crazy I give Corso a strong 8.3 to open the season. And this is based almost entirely on the segment during the pregame where he donned a hat worn by the leaders of the Notre Dame band and proceeded to march in place behind the desk to endorse his picking the Irish to win the game. You see Lee, had you just donned the hat, I could have slashed that rating almost in half but the dancing around, and chanting something like "Go Irish!" are clearly the actions of someone who has gone 'round the bend.