Every now and then, I read Peter King's Monday Morning QB for some kind of information about the NFL, and I usually don't learn a thing. Especially when Peter King slums down in the college football ranks.
For example, last year Peter told us how there was nothing in sports quite like the excitement generated by a game between a few borderline wildcard NFL teams that happen to be situated on the Eastern Seaboard.
Now, after seeing a Thursday night college football game (albeit a great game) in a stadium that seated 44,000, Peter decides that college football is teh aw3sum. If you've been reading King for a while, you know that he's got a style all his own. Basically, he's Larry King with about the same depth. Whatever thing he's happened to stumble across while flipping dials or the dudes behind him in line at the Starbucks were talking about, that's the biggest, bestest, most impressiveest thing.
And since Rutgers football is suddenly big and dominating his local media market, Peter pays attention. He's the same kind of guy that acts really surprised when an All-American 4 year starter first round draft pick turns out to be actually good in the NFL.
So click the link, and you'll see Peter really really excited about a big win. Yes, it was a huge win for Rutgers. It was a great game and the fans were great, and Rutgers is a very good team. But let's also put it in perspective a little bit. It wasn't the biggest upset of the year. It wasn't even the biggest upset of the weekend. Rutgers' history has been awful, and it's a great story about how far they've come. But Rutgers made a bowl last year. They've beaten everyone they've played. Had they lost to Louisville, they still would've been ranked. There have been bigger games this season. There's a bigger college football game going on this weekend. Without denying that it was a great story, King's hyperbole is overdoing it. And it's because King doesn't know much about scale. See, the rest of the country has a view of college football that people who live between Boston and DC generally do not have. The elation that Rutgers fans (and King) had last Thursday was fantastic. But it's also something that fans at Arizona, Florida, Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas State, and probably a half dozen other places felt last weekend. And over the last few weeks, fans felt the same at LSU, Oregon State, Kentucky, Louisville, and dozens of other places across the country. The elation that Peter King is stunned by and thinks it necessary to push all NFL news aside for is actually a pretty standard occurrence in college football. And that's why we all love it. And we're all kind of OK without the NY media market getting involved and ruining things for the rest of us.
And one other thing about Peter King and college football. Apparently someone let him watch the end of the Florida-South Carolina game and reminded him that he spent some time covering Steve Spurrier (I can almost see him in his La-Z-Boy jumping up with shock when he sees Spurrier on the sideline - "Hey, I know that guy! What's he doing at North Carolina? My how the mighty have fallen!"). Anyway, here's what he wrote about the USC-UF game:
Yes. Indeed. The fact that Florida had a 6 foot 6 inch guy with a 35+ inch vertical and 3 and half foot long arms who was lined up two yards behind the defensive front went unblocked and leapt into the air and blocked kicks has nothing to do with a single athlete making a play, but it had more to do with Steve Spurrier (and not his special teams assistant) not preparing the team. If only they hadn't wasted those hours on Wednesday afternoon practicing tackling and set plays on offense. Instead, they should've spent that time figuring out how to teleport kick team blockers through the defensive line and tackling a guy 4 yards behind them who happens to be tall. And seriously, what was Spurrier thinking not pointing out in meetings how important it would be for USC to neutralize Jarvis Moss's height. I mean, what a boneheaded coaching move Spurrier made in not calling that special play earlier in the game... you know the one... split backs, twin tight ends, sprint out draw, and the left tackle takes a hacksaw and carves off Jarvis Moss's appendages. What an idiot that Spurrier is. He should be fired because Florida's players are tall and can jump.
Watching a good chunk of the 17-16 Florida win over Steve Spurrier's South Carolina team was so reminiscent of how unprepared Spurrier's Redskins teams were. Here the Gamecocks were, playing a competitive game against a good team, AND THEY HAD THREE KICKS BLOCKED. One is too many. Two is absurd. Three is fireable. I don't have a horse in this race, but this game is a perfect example why Spurrier's coaching star has fallen so precipitously. How do you field a team so ill-prepared that it has three kicks blocked, including the potential game-winning field goal as time expired?
If this post isn't clear, I really don't like Peter King. Mainly because he just made me praise and defend Florida and Steve Spurrier in the same post. Go back to blowing Brett Favre.