Tony's Tip Sheet

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Last updated: 09/11/2013 5:44 PM
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Football
The Tip Sheet - Around the Nation
By Tony Gerdeman

We have finally reached week three of the college football season. People have been pointing to this week for as long as people have been able to point. Everybody is excited to see Alabama travel to Texas A&M to face America's favorite football-playing diva.

But there is more than just that one game to keep an eye on. There is also the Lamar at Oklahoma State game. The reason that game is so interesting to me is because the state of Oklahoma has more white people named Lamar than any other state in the union. (Yes, even more than Texas!)

In my opinion, that's a better reason to schedule an opponent than a school's marching band, but what do I know, I'm not an athletic director.

Thursday September 12
           
Teams:  #24 TCU (1-1) at Texas Tech (2-0)
Time (TV):  7:30 pm (ESPN)
Interest:  3.5
Cheer For:  Texas Tech

You're cheering for Texas Tech because you want LSU's win over TCU to become less and less impressive the older it gets. You know, kind of like all of us. We used to be so fun and full of life, but now we only have three really good stories to tell, and we tell them to anybody who will listen. I've had the checkout lady at Kroger already stop me because I've told her the same story three times now. And for those of you who have known me since I was, like, seven-years old, yes, it was the jellyfish story. In less important news, I'm pretty excited to watch this game. Texas Tech is starting walk-on freshman quarterback Baker Mayfield, and he's only averaged 390 yards passing per game with seven touchdowns and no interceptions this season. TCU, meanwhile, will be starting backup quarterback Trevone Boykin, who started last year in Casey Pachall's absence. I don't think TCU's defense is where people think it is anymore. However, this will still be the best defense that Mayfield has faced. Texas Tech 34 – TCU 27

Friday September 13

Teams:  Air Force (0-1) at Boise State (0-1)
Time (TV):  8:00 pm (ESPN) 
Interest:  2
Cheer For:  Air Force

The shine is leaving Boise State after last season, and that was a year where they went 11-2. I guess that's just part of the punishment for losing to Michigan State. Like even though you married a model, your buddies still remind you of the girlfriend you used to have with all of the body hair. “Suebacca”, they called her. Friends are the worst. This should be a pretty entertaining game, as both teams will score. I'll go with Boise State because of crooked refs. Boise State 36 – Air Force 31

Saturday September 14

Teams:  #7 Louisville (2-0) at Kentucky (1-1)
Time (TV):  12:00 pm (ESPN)
Interest:  2.5
Cheer For:  Kentucky

Contrary to what you might expect, I am not going to make fun of the good people of Kentucky in this preview. Besides, it's not like they could read it if I did, so I'd just be wasting good wit. This is a huge game for the Wildcats because a win in this game would completely surprise them and they love a good surprise. If they did win, I would expect an immediate, on-the-scene, good old-fashioned hootenanny to break out. But those are words for dreamers, because the reality is that Teddy Bridgewater is going to come into Lexington with all of the charm and good will of a revenuer, and he is going to tax the hell out of the Kentucky secondary. Louisville 38 – Kentucky 17

Teams:  Tulsa (1-1) at #14 Oklahoma (2-0)
Time (TV):  12:00 pm (ESPN2)
Interest:  1.5
Cheer For:  Tulsa

I'm just going to warn you right now. In two weeks, you are going to have to root for Notre Dame against Oklahoma. I know you don't want to hear it. You're like, “Why couldn't you tell me that I had a family member kidnapped by Colombian militia instead? At least then I would be able to face that problem head on thanks to my many hundreds of hours of intense study of the Rambo movies. But this...this...Rambo never prepared me for this!” I understand your concern and fears, but you can't count on Texas to beat the Sooners (not that you've been able to count on that in recent history anyway), and we don't even know if Oklahoma State will still have a program by the time their December 7th game happens. They still have to go to Baylor, but it would be best if the Sooners get a loss sooner, that way they won't start getting serious about their chances for a championship appearance. Oklahoma 27 – Tulsa 13

Teams:  Virginia Tech (1-1) at East Carolina (2-0)
Time (TV):  12:00 pm (FS1)
Interest:  1.5
Cheer For:  East Carolina

At this point, watching Virginia Tech is little more than a morbid curiosity. Like when we used to pay the dimwitted kids to eat various cafeteria concoctions. You know, five bucks to eat these Tabasco pineapple chunks with chicken gravy. Stuff like that. No offense to the kids who made money doing those things, of course. Heck, they are probably the forward thinking entrepreneurs who run this country today. If the Friday special in your cafeteria at work is fried fish with grape jelly and pickle juice, you've just learned a little something new about your CEO. But still don't make eye contact with him. You're not at that level. Virginia Tech 20 – East Carolina 17

Teams:  Boston College (2-0) at USC (1-1)
Time (TV):  3:00 pm (P12N)
Interest:  2
Cheer For:  Boston College

At this point, it's still perfectly fine for you to cheer for Boston College, because the likelihood of Boston College going undefeated is even smaller than the likelihood of Lane Kiffin going undefeated. Considering that USC lost at home to Washington State last week, I guess Boston College actually has a shot in this game. They can run the ball pretty well, as tailback Andre Williams is averaging 159 yards rushing per game so far this season. Neither team can score very well, but at least Boston College can move the ball forward. USC is a two-touchdown favorite, but for that to happen, Boston College may need to score -7 points. USC 20 – Boston College 17

Teams:  #1 Alabama (1-0) at  #6 Texas A&M (2-0)
Time (TV):  3:30 pm (CBS)
Interest:  5
Cheer For:  Texas A&M

Alabama had a bye week to prepare for this game (just like they do for their game against LSU), but they've been preparing for this game long before last week. Remember when it was bad news to give Charlie Weis five weeks to game plan? Well Nick Saban has had about eight months to find the proper defensive attack for Johnny Manziel, so I would expect this little college football trope to actually come true for once. By the way, you know what you get when you give Charlie Weis five weeks to prepare? A bowl loss. (You can have that joke. It's free.) Also, while everybody is wondering how Alabama is going to stop Texas A&M, there is the small matter of A&M having to stop Alabama as well. I'm expecting a two-touchdown win for the Tide because that's the exact opposite of what America wants. Alabama 38 – Texas A&M 24

Teams:  Tennessee (2-0) at #2 Oregon (2-0)
Time (TV):  3:30 pm (ABC)
Interest:  2.5
Cheer For:  Tennessee

A win for the Volunteers would get them ranked for just the second time since the second week of the 2008 season. I don't mention that fact because there's a chance of Tennessee winning, I just mentioned it because I thought it was pretty funny. This game isn't going to be pretty. In fact, it's going to be the worst thing to happen to Tennessee since “No shirt, no shoes, no service” became the norm. Oregon 48 – Tennessee 17

Teams:  Georgia Tech (1-0) at Duke (2-0)
Time (TV):  3:30 pm (ESPNU)
Interest:  1
Cheer For:  Duke

Georgia Tech had a bye week to prepare for Duke, which is like getting that last intense workout in before unscrewing a light bulb. Georgia Tech 41 – Duke 40

Teams:  Vanderbilt (1-1) at #13 South Carolina (1-1)
Time (TV):  7:00 pm (ESPN)
Interest:  2
Cheer For:  Vanderbilt

This game is only important because ESPN says it is. Basically, it's a pair of 1-1 SEC East teams who have each lost their only tough game of the year. So despite what ESPN tells you, this game isn't all that important. It's basically the algebra of college football. You don't need it. South Carolina 34 – Vanderbilt 20

Teams:  Mississippi State (1-1) at Auburn (2-0)
Time (TV):  7:00 pm (ESPN2)
Interest:  1.5
Cheer For:  Mississippi State

This game probably won't be all that interesting. In fact, the only thing I can think to write about it is that it probably won't be interesting. I mean, it could be interesting, but probably won't be. Maybe if there's a power outage, or a streaker family from the hills wanders out onto the field because security was too skeezed out to stop them. The family would just run around and frolic in the worst possible ways. Animal control would finally be called and they'd bring their tranquilizer guns. But since this is a hill family, a tranquilizer to them is like a Skittle to you. “Ew, gross. They've got watermelon tranqs. I hate watermelon!” Police and animal control would be helpless until somebody would get the bright idea to show a Speedway commercial on the scoreboard, and then the family would remember that they haven't had dinner yet and then they'd head to the nearest gas station to become somebody else's problem. Auburn 34 – Mississippi State 17

Teams:  #25 Ole Miss (2-0) at Texas (1-1)
Time (TV):  8:00 pm (LHN)
Interest:  3
Cheer For:  Texas

Earlier in the week, Mack Brown fired defensive coordinator Manny Diaz and hired Greg Robinson to replace him. Yes, the same Greg Robinson who was Rich Rodriguez's defensive coordinator at Michigan. The sad part is that I can't come up with a better punchline than Mack Brown's. This is like when somebody says my cooking tastes like dog food and I'm all like, “Oh yeah, then why not eat the real thing!” And then I slide out a can of Alpo and plop it in a casserole dish. Mack Brown is clearly at his wit's end, and Greg Robinson is his Alpo. Ole Miss 31 – Texas 30

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