Monday, November 06, 2006

Gameday Recap

Week Ten
College Station, Texas - Oklahoma at Texas A&M
November 4, 2006

Chris Fowler made his choice. Now we see what really matters to him. I hope he's happy with what he's done, how he's disappointed his fans. Where will we get our misplaced effette-ness? Nonetheless, I like the choice of location. A&M fans are nuts. Looks like a huge crowd on hand for a game 10 hours away.

  • Corso likes the kissing tradition. He seems to get wood thinking about the red zone.
  • Herbstreit: A&M is the best student section in the country. I'm pretty sure he's said something similar about Penn State, Iowa, and probably 15 other locations. Herbstreit complimenting the home team's fans is akin to the lead singer saying "Hello Springfield!!"
  • Corso says that coaches remember the games they play in November.
  • Herbstreit: Coaches that win in November got rest for their players, both physically and emotionally. (I'm sorry, but I don't buy this BS. Plenty of champions won multiple emotionally draining games during their title years. I'm thinking Tennessee in 98, Ohio State in 2002, etc.)
  • National College Football Day is today. What does that mean?
  • No sexy matchups, says Davis.
  • Herbstreit tells us how impressed he was with USC in last week's loss. John David Booty showed heart and stuff. (My point? Is that really what we should've been taking note of in the USC game?)
  • Corso: Spurrier gets one good win a year, so watch the Cocks tonight.
  • Who should Michigan State hire? Corso thinks they should hire John L. Smith. Always defend the coaches, Scooter. Always. Herbstreit thinks the Spartans need discipline, accountability, respect. Suprisingly, he didn't say "better players, better scoring, better defense" or anything else that actually means something in terms of winning games. Herbstreit always focuses on the intangibles.
  • The Aggie yell leaders have interesting uniforms.
  • WIRED with the Aggie 12th Man. They could've done something better with the 12th man bit. Wired is a useless segment.
  • A&M has a lot of traditions.
  • Corso likes Army-Navy, somehow makes the awesome tradition seem boring.
  • Herbstreit says "besides, of course, dotting the I" Howard's Rock is the best. Always defend the Buckeyes. Always.
  • I've forgot to mention this, but I'm not sure I like how Papa Roach has replaced "Shoulder Lean" as the downloadable song.
  • Highlights of Temple breaking their losing streak. I like the shot of the coach - context.
  • All Access - Officials. David Amber reporting. Fascinating segment. Useful, atypical. Why don't they do stuff like this more often? Amazing bit showing the communication on the fumble TD review. Great Great Great segment.
  • Herbstreit says referees are sucking this year because of instant replay. Says it's amazing, the contrast between NFL officials and college officials. Ummm... NFL officials are paid better, and it's the peak of the profession - of course they're going to be better.
  • Recap and highlights from Thursday's Louisville-WVU game.
  • Herbstreit tells us how he and Big East insiders knew all along that the WVU-UL game was going to be big, but the UL-Rutgers game would be just as big. Right, dude.
  • Bobby Petrino joins the show. Ridiculous greenscreen behind him. I'm not sure Petrino's ready for prime time in terms of self promotion.
  • BCS projections are wrong. Florida was 4th, not 5th.
  • Chris Fowler joins the set. Says Louisville is good, if not better than most 1-loss teams because all 1 loss teams have close wins too (doesn't mention UL's close win over Cincinnati).
  • Corso says Louisville isn't title-worthy because no D.
  • Herbstreit says the Big East needs more respect. Thinks Louisville's D is pretty good. Says UL is a solid number 3. Also wants to reserve judgment until they play Rutgers and Pitt. So ride that fence.
  • Fowler brings up the importance of style points again. (I think that's the dumbest phrase pundits have been overusing all year. Football isn't figure skating. Plenty of teams don't need "style points" to get votes (ND, OSU, USC, etc.). It's just a way to say "wow, they played well enough to make me rethink my own underinformed opinions."
  • Fowler tries to compare Breeders' Cup horses to football teams, but makes no sense doing it. He compares Bernardini to OSU and Michigan for "having a great pedigree", then Lava Man to Louisville for being "blue collar". He has watched the flashy offense of Louisville, and the grunt it out in the trenches game of Michigan, right?
  • Game Face: Facepaint returns. I'm disappointed in you, Aggies.
  • ND-UNC: Herbstreit says expect a big day from Brady Quinn. Against a 1-7 team that's only beaten a 1-AA team by 3? You sure that won't be a tough matchup for him?
  • Desmond Howard joins to talk about the Heisman. Says Quinn needs a big game against USC and a bad game by Troy Smith in the Michigan game. Herbstreit agrees, says how far ahead of everyone else that Smith will win it.
  • Corso says Quinn had a good chance to win the Heisman for all the obvious reasons. He's working off a crib sheet that was written forever ago.
  • Davis tells us that the George Bush Library is named for the father of the current president. Please, expect more out of your audience.
  • Some coverage of OSU and Michigan games against lesser opponents. Davis calls Illinois "improving". The line is "getting better and better", Rece, but we'll give you some credit.
  • Extended piece on Troy Smith. Tom Rinaldi reporting. Good highlights, but I get the feeling like I've seen this before, or maybe I'll see it again. The question and answer under time pressure bit is kind of stupid.
  • Musberger, Davie and Herbstreit on the fake field to talk about games they aren't covering. Musberger is antsy, probably lit. Herbstreit has the look of "why must I be surrounded by frickin' idiots". For good reason.
  • Corso and Davis talk about OSU-UM rematch. Corso is dead right about this - and how unfair it is - that Ohio State would get a rematch if they lose by one (at home), but Michigan wouldn't (on the road). But then he veers off into rambling about how a 1-loss SEC team or USC should be in it ahead of an undefeated Big East team.
  • Discussion about the ACC, BC-Wake. Corso likes BC because BC has beaten teams this year that represent the same school as past year's ACC champs. (Is my sarcasm about these pundits' logic dripping enough? Sometimes I think I need to make it worse).
  • Flashback to the crew flying with the Air Force Academy.
  • Corso plays to the crowd by picking against Texas. Herbstreit thinks Texas will win big because they're tired of hearing about how they're behind in the first half only to come back and win. That's a weird motivational tool. They're disrespecting us by talking about how we're resilient and win? Also, more intangibles from Herbstreit in lieu of actual, y'know, game analysis.
  • Montage! With highlights set to All American Rejects. Sometimes I think they make this show tailored towards 13 year old boys, instead of the college age degenerate gamblers that actually are their main audience.
  • Biggest Surprise of the Season: Corso - Wake. Herbstreit - Boston College. (Rutgers?)
  • Biggest Disappointment: Corso - Colorado. Herbstreit - Miami. (FSU, Iowa, Georgia?)
  • Decibel Reader says 116. Not too shabby. Still behind Clemson.
  • Last weekend was bad for USC because they lost and a bunch of players that used to play for them also lost.
  • Extended piece on how USC will bounce back. Shelley Smith reporting. Pete Carroll talks for a while about how good the loss to Oregon State is for his program. Every other 1-loss team got this kind of coverage, right? I can't seem to remember. Tommy Tuberville got 5 minutes on Gameday to talk about how he kept his player's spirits up and stuff after the Arkansas game, right? Bret Bielema too? Mack Brown after the OSU game? Just asking... For the record, this was the longest segment of the entire show.
  • Davis cites Mark May making excuses for USC. Consider the source.
  • Howard is back to talk about USC. Howard thinks USC will lose again, thought so because of all the talent they lost. Thinks the Trojans might lose 3.
  • Corso likes USC to lose to Cal, but thinks they'll be great next year.
  • LSU-Tennessee. Davis calls LSU's performance against good teams "disappointing." I remember the Auburn game. If not for a terrible PI non-call, LSU probably wins that game. I wouldn't call the Auburn loss all that bad.
  • Herbstreit's top 1-loss teams: Texas, Tennessee, Cal, Auburn, Florida (in that order).
  • Herbstreit thinks LSU looked "awful" against good teams on the road. Again, was the Auburn loss all that bad? I don't remember it being an embarassment for LSU.
  • J. Lane for A&M. He's big. Extended piece on him. No reporter. Why isn't this guy playing D line?
  • Actual analysis for the OU-A&M game. Half as much time given to discussion about the actual game that they're at as they allotted for Pete Carroll to remind people he's still a good coach after a loss.
  • Some discussion about Wisconsin, but it's jsut because ABC's showing the game. Bonnie Bernstein is on site wearing a ridiculous hat. She offers some useful last minute injury information. More of this please (especially ridiculous hats).
  • Corso thinks Wisconsin loses to Iowa. Herbstreit likes them to win out, thinks Bielema might be coach of the year, apparently forgetting that Terry Hoeppner might get Indi-freaking-ana to a bowl AND HE HAD A BRAIN TUMOR DURING THE SEASON.
  • Game Changer: Corso - JaMarcus Russell. Herbstreit - Matt Ryan (BC). Davis - McGee (A&M).
  • Saturday Stupid Selections: Corso: Oklahoma State, Clemson, BC, Georgia, Lava Man Herbstreit: Clemson, Virginia, BC.
  • Herbstreit nailed Invasor and Bernardini in the exacta.
Perhaps I'm cranky, but I think this was one of their worst shows of the year. The segment on refs was great. But Herbstreit was intangible-riffic. The cross-promotion was overbearing. Corso was off his rocker. And they didn't even cover a lot of games. They didn't pick any of the Pac-10 games, they didn't even mention the fact that the SEC East title could've been won by the #7 team in the nation (playing a team that pushed them to the limit last year). The biggest game in Conference USA all season was Saturday, and they didn't mention it. I don't think it was Rece Davis's fault, either. They wasted way too much time with prepackaged bits on USC and Ohio State, when neither was playing a big game. They even didn't take advantage of all the great traditions at A&M. They could've shown us yell practice. This was just a wasted episode. Hope they're better next week. I've got no idea where they'll be though. Only two matchups of ranked teams - Tennessee at Arkansas and Oregon-USC. Maybe Notre Dame at Air Force, since they like to visit service academies occasionally. The ABC games aren't too promising next week, either.