The Common Man's approach to CFB, brought to you by the most normal person on any team.
From Week 1 last season:
Hey everyone, Backup Punter here. Big time fan of the program. Like many/most of you, I do not possess the athleticism necessary to step foot into the world of College Football. But somewhere in my past, a high school coach convinced me to lace up the soccer cleats and try kicking the oblong ball. The rest is history, and I landed on my feet as a backup punter. While my playbook consists of punt left, punt middle, and punt right, I still appreciate the finer things in the game, and hope to keep you updated on a week by week basis. Here’s my takes for the week, and what you should look forward to in the near future. Enjoy an inside look from the eyes of the most average player on a D1 roster.
[Note: This should come every Monday morning, but I'll add the "?" to give myself a little leeway]
We’re back now with site permission to broadcast to the masses, and man, has it been a long offseason. We wondered through the wilderness for 8 long months following a pick route to secure a championship, and the chaos is back.
After what was a 5 day binge of football that left everyone surprisingly hungry for more, let’s recap in the best way we know how. SEGMENTSSS.
1) I hate Week 1 games - With Deondre Francois out for the season after incurring an injury in what was essentially third quarter garbage time of “the biggest week 1 game ever,” I’m officially off the train of wanting huge slates for the opening weekend. Go play Lamar and leave my player’s knees largely intact.
2) I hate Alabama - Despite taking them in literally every pick ‘em and team draft I’m in this season, it’s still hard for me to root for these guys... but it is still sort of nuts that that team is as dominant as they are week in and week out. Also, Special Teams shout out almost went out to these guys... but I’ll save it for later.
3) Watch out for Fromm - You’re probably thinking to yourself, “Why is Stephen talking about georgia? He hates those guys more than Harbaugh hates wearing anything other than khakis.” Well, you’re right and I do. But this kid is going to be better than Eason, Bauta, Lambert, Mason, Cox, Tereshinski, Shockley, and Greene combined. For those of you thinking “hey, he forgot two of the Top Dwags of the past 16 seasons...”
I know. I do watch sports outside of my alma mater, and don’t have to bark to show my love for them. But until we get a little larger sample size, I’m not ready to put him in the Murray/Stafford stratosphere. That’s my opinion, I’d love to hear yours.
[Edit: they opened as a 4.5 dog @ ND... not a great look for the #15 team in the country against a team that went 4-8 last year. #NotreDameWent4and8 ]
Things I think I know:
1) There’s a bad man out there named Derrius, and I don’t know if we’ve been acquainted this season - I honestly wanted to watch LSU more than I did the ‘Bama game this weekend. On a nerd level, I think that Matt Canada is going to be special at LSU and that Coach O made a great hire. Guice only accounted for 122 yards on 27 carries, but I see these numbers absolutely exploding come say Week 12 coughcough in Knoxville coughcough
2) G5 put on their collective big boy pants this weekend - Strong showings across the country were highlighted by Arkansas State nearly beating not Bo Pelini and Nebraska, Liberty messing around and actually beating Baylor, Western Michigan staying close until the fourth quarter against USC, and Southern Miss almost completing what could have been the worst home-home ever for Kentucky. Proud of you little-r guys. Keep making us proud and covering spreads.
3) The ACC just went wide open - Not to harp on injuries, but Clemson’s path to repeating in the Atlantic Division could have just gotten easier. I don’t know anything about backup QB James Blackman, but I would venture to say he’s not Francois, at least not yet. And a little ways north, a dude with a 25 pound bronze statue in his mama’s house is still putting up video game numbers, but...
4) On a similar note, turns out you need your players to play in order to win - Ask Jim McElwain and his army of Na’vi Warriors after they fought against the Minion horde of Michigan Men.
5) I can’t tell you why, but I don’t like UCLA.
[insert joke about engines or something... it’s been a long weekend, cut me some slack]
I think after last night, Tech did the one thing I wanted them to do for the game. They showed that the team should be taken seriously. They absolutely obliterated Tennessee’s defense all game and showed the we have a viable solution that is capable of being fun to watch. My biggest fear was repeating various Peach Bowls and the 2012 VT season opener, and although being on the losing end of 2OT sucks, it showed a promise that I think a lot of people can get behind moving forward.
Also, on a lighter note:
Also, as your price of admission this week, no comments on the kicking game once we finish up here, it hasn’t been 48 hours since the game, and I can already tell you that I’m well aware of Tech’s current predicament. Shawn Davis is aware, and everyone affiliated with Tech is aware. Cut the kid some slack, please. If your average person were to have to say their name and hometown in front of 75,000 people, I’d bet you’d be just as nervous, so have some empathy.
Kenny Trill Heisman of the Week:
By Week 3 we should know exactly who was overhyped, and then they might replace His Trillness, but until then, we will continue to glorify one Kenneth Hill for his contributions to the game.
Week 1 winner:
Drew Lock - QB - Missouri
They might have been playing DII Missouri State, but that didn’t stop Drew from slinging the ball around the yard. 521 through the air on 21 completions, 7 TD’s, all in the obscurity of a game that everyone saw pop up on the ESPN app and collectively said:
Also ran: Taquon Marshall - QB - Georgia Tech
But I’m going to cross my fingers here and say this wasn’t a flash in the path, so his nomination does not embody the true spirit of the award.
Does Tech need a Tee [Boston]?
A little background, the single most important position on the team is obviously the Tee Boy. He is the Special Teams player with the least seniority who is responsible for running on to the field after kickoff in order to pick up the tee for the Kicker. It saves the Kicker from making the extra run to get the tee after kickoff and allows him to do even less over the course of the game. So the weekly question here will be: Does Tech need a Tee Boy? I tell you, yes.
[Kansas State's Tee Boy, who is actually a boy, not an active member of the football team.]
In the event that Tech does continue the once prestigious Tee Boy system, I will report his stats each home game and assign a grade to him on a WAR [Wins Above Replacement] basis.
Tin Horn Team of the Week:
Stemming from Overlord Saban’s quote here (autoplay ad beware):
Let’s go with Tennessee here because it’s my article, and I’m still not happy about it.
Prop Bet of the Week:
This segment will include bets for the upcoming Georgia Tech game each week, and this week, I’ll go with a fun one that’s sure to not annoy literally everyone after this offseason.
Number of QB’s to play for Tech against JSU: O/U 2
Fire it up!
(Eaux)de to the O:
So, as you all might know/will know shortly, Coach Ed Orgeron is my favorite person in College Football. He is an utterly preposterous man, and he makes me laugh simply through is existence. Oh, and he’s not a half bad football coach. Each week, I’ll bring you a Coach O story either from the past or present, and it’ll all remind us that it’s okay to just enjoy the simpler things in life.
This week, we have ESPN commenters getting so bored during the LSU vs. BYU game that they just devolve into Coach Eaux impressions. Enjoy.
The More You Know:
Great article from a big ole’ nerd about football. I hope to find one of these a week to brighten up the dark time between Pac 12 After Dark until Tuesday night MACtion starts back up again.
Punters are People Too:
This has been documented well back at the mothership, but I honestly do feel bad for this kid...
T’s & P’s to the marimba:
Watch out for the band! pic.twitter.com/nbDKwCH7dX— ESPN CollegeFootball (@ESPNCFB) September 5, 2017
What If? of the Week:
What if Marcus Marshall hadn’t transferred?
This still hits close to home, but I’m approaching this from Marcus’ point of view specifically. In their route of East Carolina over the weekend (saw that one coming from a nautical mile away), Marcus wasn’t the feature back. That would be one Cardon Johnson, who, coming off of an Achilles injury last season, burned ECU for 265 on the ground on only 17 carries.
Marcus would go on to earn 88 yards rushing on 10 attempts, the bulk of which came on a 70 yard touchdown in the fourth quarter of the contest.
It’s always going to be a what-would-have-been story, and one I don’t want to really know the whole truth behind. I’m gonna go process all my Tech fan emotions here in the corner, don’t mind me.
THEY ARE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE
This week, the Dennis Green Award for Outstanding Obviousness goes to...
Jimbo Fisher. He knew the hammer was coming. Turns out, a nail is held in place by another force before getting ultimately driven into its final resting spot. Guess that force would be the $5,000,000 FSU got paid to be the nail in the first place. Turns out, Alabama is who we thought they were, to quote Dan Katz, “a cement mixer”.
As always, thanks for reading, and hopefully next week I'll be bringing you all the column at its normal time, preferably on Monday, preferably in the morning. Just like the doctor ordered.