And at the halfway poll …
It always shows up suddenly, doesn’t it? Here we are in early October and many college football teams are already halfway through the regular season schedule. Does any sport have a longer offseason and a shorter regular season than does CFB?
So, let’s review the bidding when it comes to the first half’s biggest news, then take a look at the remaining schedules of the teams jockeying to win, place, show and finish fourth in the Playoff Sweeps. I asked Bill Hancock to comment, but he told me, “Sorry my friend, I have to work on my perfectly plastered nerd smile for the Playoff Committee reveals. Of course, all of the interim rankings are a waste of time, but I do get my sweet smile on the tube and ESPN makes some much needed bank.”
No offense, but Rob Mullens is working on the very same, and is also practicing his, “The Committee believes that …” Get hip, my friend, to the CFB Grapevine, the Hive Mind!
So, sans Billy Bob’s assistance, and hoping for the best for Rob, shall we press on?
Going back to Houston, Houston, Houston?
“Hey, D’Eriq King, you just threw and ran for a TD for the 15th game in a row; this beats (a moment of reverent silence, please) Tim Tebow’s record. So, are you going to Disney World?”
“No, Sir, I’m going to redshirt! But cross my heart and hope to throw a pick, in 2020, I’ll be back balling for the Houston Cougars!”
At the close of the 2019 season, Jalen Hurts graduates from The Lincoln Riley QB Finishing School. Norman, Norman, My Love?
Mr. President, We Have a Likeness Gap!
Holy Friedrick Nietzsche! According to the NCAA’s Numero Uno Nattering Nabob Mark Emmert, CFB is facing an existential threat.
This is in response to California Governor Gavin Newsome signing SB206 into law. Of course, seeing as how this measure was passed out of the California House and Senate without a single “Nay” vote, a veto from the Gov would have been overridden like a horse in back-to-back claiming races. Beginning in 2023, California student-athletes will have the right to individually market and profit from their own personal likenesses. In other words, what I see in the mirror is now all mine!
POP QUIZ: Once upon a time, there was a place where all workers received the same compensation. Except for the 1% or so, who the set the work schedules and goals for the workers. These administrative folks made big bank.
Where was this place?
HINT: In this place: Catherine was Great. Rasputin, and later Putin, rocked, and no less than The Beatles wanted to go back there.
Student-athletes making money off of their work and sweat? The Shame! By the way, Emmert, what are you pulling down per annum? Sixteen states are now considering similar bills, including Colorado and Washington. And, if similar legislation passes in Florida, the law would go into effect in 2020, allowing the NCAA no breathing room to 2023, as the Golden State has so allowed.
Commissar Emmert, come 2023, has threatened to ostracize California from the NCAA. If more and more states follow suit, the Maine Black Bears could be battling the Vermont Catamounts for every NCAA title.
Oh well, the Duck’s long, long shot at a CFB Playoff spot likely missed the target Saturday in The Swamp where Puddles’ Playoff concierge, Auburn, was convincingly chomped on by the Gators. Any doubt that, with things Bruin Bad in LA (blown out by the Beavs!), the Gators inked the better Granite State born and raised Irish Guy?
But in this Greybeard’s opinion, the Rose Bowl (likely with more folks in attendance than at Saturday’s Bruins/Beavs game) would be far from a consolation prize for a rebuilding Oregon program. And with UW playing like a distempered Dawg in a loss down on The Farm, Oregon is most certainly in the Pac-12 North driver’s seat.
(Warning: In the Buffs’ loss to Arizona, QB Steven Montez never-the-less broke FOXY Joel Klatt and Cody Hawkins’ CU pass completions record.)
Let us now handicap the strength (1-7) of the remaining schedules of the seven thoroughbred’s currently in the lead for the 2019 Playoff Sweeps.
Alabama: LSU and at Auburn. Sorry, but I don’t see a trip to Texas A&M being a big test for this well-trained and well-Tua’d-up stud. Schedule Rank: Third
Clemson: in a weak ACC, maybe Clemson gets a wake up call? Ah, no. Shouldn’t the stewards have required this jockey to carry additional weight? Schedule Rank: Seventh
Florida: moves up from the middle of the field with the Auburn win. It’s likely to be swampy weather conditions next Saturday in Baton Rouge, but Gators, you aren’t getting LSU in The Swamp. UF also has The Cocktail Party coming up, where it will try to out chug Georgia, and at Mizzou could be tricky. Schedule Rank: Second
Georgia: faces the aforementioned chug-a-lug against the Gators and also has to trip to Auburn. Schedule Rank: Fourth
LSU: Man, that revamped Tigers offense is rolling. LSU gets Florida and Auburn at home. At Bama on November 9th is likely the game that will decide the SEC West. Shout out to Pat Haden for Sarking on Coach O. Schedule Rank: First
Ohio State: gets Wisky and Penn State in The Shoe. Okay, it’s one of CFB’s big-time rivalry games, but I don’t see this Buckeyes team going down in the Big House. Schedule Rank: Fifth
Oklahoma: Looks like it’ll be but The World’s Biggest Fried Food Fest against Texas in Dallas next Saturday. Otherwise, the Sooners will put the Hurts on the rest of the Big 12. Schedule Rank: Sixth
Teams with a chance to move up with a fantastic finish down the stretch: Auburn, Notre Dame, Penn State, Texas and Wisconsin. And from way back: Oregon and Utah. Hope beats eternal within Puddles’ breast. But with that UW loss, cheer, cheer for USC to Fight On in South Bend. Never forget, in CFB, upsets happen often. Plus, there are those pesky conference championship games to be played.
My Halfway Wag
Peach Bowl: No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 4 Oklahoma
Fiesta Bowl: No. 2 Ohio State vs. No. 3 Clemson
National Championship Game: Alabama vs. Ohio State
Cotton Bowl: Boise State vs. LSU
Orange Bowl: Wake Forest vs. Notre Dame (the Orange Bowl must take an ACC team …)
Sugar Bowl: Texas vs. Georgia
Rose Bowl: Oregon vs. Wisconsin
Keep those heart meds handy Ducks fans, looks like a whole lot of close games coming up.
Georgetown, TexasTop Photo by Kevin Cline
Chris Brouilette, the FishDuck.com Volunteer editor for this article, is a current student at the University of Oregon and is from Sterling, Illinois.
Jon Joseph grew up in Boston, Massachusetts but has been blessed to have lived long enough in the west to have exorcised all east coast bias. He played football in college and has passionately followed the game for seven decades. A retired corporate attorney Jon has lectured across the country and published numerous articles on banking and gaming law. Now a resident of Aiken South Carolina, Jon follows college football across the nation with a focus on the Conference of Champions and the Ducks.
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