Monday, September 04, 2006

Gameday Recap

Week 1
September 2
Atlanta, GA - Notre Dame at Georgia Tech

  • Musberger starts things off! You are looking LIVE!
  • Big N Rich (and Cowboy Troy) are back. Never noticed before, but the top hat wearing one has an LL Cool J-on-Unplugged-sized deodorant nugget under his arm at the end there. Gross.
  • Regular lineup is back. The preview must've been the exception rather than the rule.
  • Corso: Interested in new QBs at Texas, Oklahoma, USC. Because each has enough talent to go for the MNC.
  • Herbstreit: Look for what teams are "prepared".
  • Fowler: "How will Brady Quinn handle all the hype about the Heisman?" (This is a pet peeve of mine - ESPN is the main hyper, so aren't they basically asking whether Quinn will be able to handle the annoyance of ESPN?)
  • Herbstreit: Ohio St. offense is maybe the most electrifying O in the nation.
  • Fowler: whether Tennessee can get back to a decent offense under Cutcliffe is "a big 'if'".
  • Corso: Texas's O line is the #1 in the country
  • Lots of repeat graphics, storylines, even exact repeat comments from the preview special. Texas QBs is one repeat.
  • Herbstreit: Vince Young made Texas play loose, wonders who will make them play that way this year.
  • Corso: Texas won't play for the MNC, but has the #1 O-line, great defense, top talent. But he thinks the loss of Young and the psychological difficulty of repeating will be too much.
  • After Herbstreit says, reasonably, that he'd like to see a few teams with young QBs play before making rash predictions, Fowler says that's what he's paid to do. (And therein lies the great flaw in this show and sports punditry).
  • Gillette GameFace is back. Great.
  • Fowler: GT fight song is the best in the country, even though it references gambling and drinking. Fowler is kind of a dork.
  • Fowler: No ranked team plays a more manageable schedule than WVU.
  • Corso: WVU is going to the MNC game. Toughest game is at Louisville "Yo!".
  • The crowd is really loud. Herbstreit seems a little flustered.
  • Herbstreit: WVU won't make it to MNC game. Louisville too tough, difficulty handling hype.
  • Fowler: "You don't sashay into Papa John's Stadium and smack around Louisville". (might be quote of the day).
  • Highlight on the coaches making a debut today.
  • Extended piece on Pat Fitzgerald at Northwestern. (Connelly) Live audience applause.
  • Herbstreit: Top 5 WR are Samardzija, Jarrett, Ginn, Derrick Williams, Calvin Johnson , who is arguably the best.
  • Extended piece on Calvin Johnson. (He's freaking awesome)
  • Desmond Howard is back, on the goofy gameday field. Corso is helping him out, looking spry but kind of creepy. I can't for the life of me figure out if I'm supposed to be learning something from Howard. Corso describes how he'd defend Johnson. Tale of the Tape between Corso and Howard. Corso had as many Int's as Deion??!!??
  • Wired: Tedford at Cal. Brags about his own schedule. (I think the wired segments are as dumb as they come - shots of coaches yelling cliches and grunting, great.)
  • Fowler says Tennessee had a bad offseason: "More arrests, 8 of the 22 recruitsdismissed or failed to qualify". Tennessee had a pretty quiet offseason, if I recall correctly - not anything like the crime waves of past years.
  • Herbstreit: Does Tennessee have any pride left? Talks direcly to the UT players about how much hype has been given [by ESPN] to Cal. Picks Tennessee though.
  • Corso: Marshawn Lynch can play like mumblemumble. NSFMF! Cal beats UT! Corso thinks the swing in the spread in favor of Cal means somebody knows something.
  • Mention of the new game clock rules. Nobody slams it though. (This is a good example of what kinds of problems I have with this show. They toe the network line a little too much. I haven't met a single fan who likes the new clock rules because it shortens the football action. Every single fan says the same thing: if you think the games are too long, cut a few minutes of commercials. But would a pundit paid by a network say something like that? Of course not. Instead we have the TV networks cutting down on the action to increase their profits instead of doing something that the viewers would prefer, and the corporate talking heads say nothing.)
  • Corso: FSU needs to beat Miami more. FSU is in decline (as Fowler starts the warchant). FSU needs to get some pride back.
  • Herbstreit: Miami has lost their swagger the last few years (and he namechecks Mark May). Miami is going to win the MNC this year and show it this year.
  • There's another Gameday on Monday, featuring Michael Irvin sitting down with players. (I don't know if I'll be able to handle the incompetence of doing a recap of that)
  • Another Wired segment with a Florida assistant coach. "Let's go, let's go! Nice shot! That's You!" I just learned so much. That was so great.
  • Corso: Forget about Tebow, Leak is great.
  • Herbstreit: Tebow will play, but Leak will have a great year.
  • Strange comment here: Fowler: Urban Meyer invited the freshmen over to his house, they played in the pool, then he laid out everything they've done wrong in their entire lives. (Does this make Urban seem like kind of a dick to anyone else?)
  • Fowler calls Paterno "Joap-uh" rather than "Joe-Pah". I got so annoyed by this last year.
  • Lisa Salters appears to be on the Notre Dame beat. She picks up the Shelley Smith/USC playbook. This week it's the Zbikowski boxing story.
  • Aside - Charlie Weis speaks in the third person. I'm going to be watching for this.
  • Musberger and Bob Davie join the show. (I don't think I like this)
  • Herbstreit: ND's getting to the MNC game, the defense will be pretty good. ND's early schedule is tough.
  • Davie, enunciating excruciatingly: GT will make it close, the crowd'll be a factor. Also, Davie recalls being afraid of this year's ND schedule back when he was coach (I call BS on that).
  • Holtz joins (Davie and Holtz? Can we dig up the rotting corpse of Knute Rockne for more unbiased perspective?). Holtz does suggest that ND's schedule gets really easy toward the end of the season.
  • Corso fluffs Holtz, then says why he doesn't think ND wins - because of speed on D.
  • Flashback: the first road show bcak in 1993.
  • Extended piece on Rhett Bomar, Paul Thompson and Oklahoma. (Cyphers) Thompson has an AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME mustache.
  • Mark May joins from the studio. May: Oklahoma won't be involved in the MNC picture or go to a BCS bowl because of the loss of Bomar (c/f to his comments about the loss of Vince Young at Texas from the preview schedule and you tell me if he's logically consistent). Herbstreit appears to agree with May, though he thinks OU will be OK. Corso also doesn't think OU can win the MNC, and agrees with May about Thompson.
  • Fowler's hair looks really big and "local news anchor"-y.
  • No longer can you get the ringtone for "Comin' to your City", but now it's Young Dro's "Shoulder Lean". Alright.
  • Herbstreit: Derrick Williams is one of the most electrifying freshmen from last year in all of college football.
  • Herbstreit: OSU's defense by the time it's all done will be one of the best in the country. Again, we should trust him because he's clearly independent.
  • Desmond Howard meets with Garrett Wolfe of NIU. (I'm glad they're spending some of the extra airtime on a smaller school, rather than just another segment on USC or ND - of course they're really only showing this to draw viewers for the Ohio State game).
  • Herbstreit again harps on how good OSU's D is going to be.
  • That's a good ten minutes spent covering Ohio State playing an OOC game against a smaller conference opponent. Hype Hype Hype.
  • Corso: WSU will give Auburn all sorts of fits, but lose. Herbstreit thinks Auburn will look good. Just for those of you keeping count, that was about 45 seconds on this game.
  • Repeat from preview on USC's offseason troubles. Again, Pete Carroll has good media training.
  • Extended Piece on Chauncey Washington at USC. Stunningly, Shelley Smith is doing a piece on USC. Good Lord she must be bored with doing these same pieces over and over again.
  • Corso: USC won't win the MNC because they lost too much and they'll lose at either Arkansas or Arizona.
  • Herbstreit: USC lost 97% of total offense in 2002, and ended up winning the national title.
  • Piece on all the hype devoted to Brady Quinn's Heisman candidacy. (So Meta. ESPN is giving him all the hype. Never forget that.)
  • Corso: GT has a chance if they can keep ND's O off the field.
  • Herbstreit: GT's defense is good and stuff, but if they don't get to Quinn, all hell will break loose.
  • Corso: How can you criticize Lloyd Carr? Then he explains how, but says the bar is too high there that it's "not really fair".
  • Herbstreit doesn't think Carr will get fired, but also thinks Michigan will be good.
  • Game Changer. Corso: Darius Walker. Herbstreit: John David Booty. Fowler: Erik Ainge.
  • Saturday [Stupid] Selections: (instead of cataloging all picks from Herbstreit and Corso, I'll just point out where they were wrong. Corso: NIU to cover, UVA, Arkansas to cover, Cal. Herbstreit: Stanford, NIU to cover.
  • Fowler says that Herbstreit shouldn't pick the ND-GT game because he'll be calling it. I'm not sure why that would be imprudent, while it's fine for him to boost Ohio State all morning or make any insane statement he wants. Why is one OK but the other isn't? He's affecting the coverage of the sport as much in these two hours as he would as a commentator during the game (if not more). That just seems stupid.
Week 1 in the books.

Next week: probably in Austin. Expect a full hour of stories on Ohio State.