Iowa didn’t play last Saturday, which meant it gained a half-game on Michigan and Northwestern in the Big Ten Legends. But it lost a half-game to Michigan State and Nebraska. I guess it all evens out.
1. Call an Exorcist: Texas Tech gained 666 yards against Iowa State Saturday. That’s the Texas Tech Red Raiders.
Yet, the time of possession only favored Tech by 30:16-29:44.
The Hlist thinks 666 yards is enough to make your head spin.
2. Conventional Wisdom is Unwise: Outside of Alabama ruling the college football world, what about the sport can you truly say is a given outside of torn ACLs and coaches getting bonuses for taking 6-6 teams to bowl games?
Before Saturday, who saw Texas beating Oklahoma? Who confidently believed Utah would defeat Stanford? Who said with certainty that Missouri would handle Georgia in Athens?
Who said Missouri and Texas A&M would improve their football profiles in the Southeastern Conference rather than be trampled by their new SEC brothers?
Who said in August that Johnny Manziel’s reputation would bounce back from off-field troubled child to on-field magician by mid-October?
If you watched Manziel carry A&M past Ole Miss Saturday night, you saw a special player indeed.
“The thing that makes [Manziel] different is that he’s one of the greatest competitors I’ve ever been around, and because of that, he takes chances and plays a little on the edge, but that’s what makes him ‘him,’ ” Aggies Coach Kevin Sumlin said. “He’s only got one way to do things, and because of that, our players have a confidence that the game is not over till it’s over.”
3. Speed Bowl: Tennessee and Virginia Tech will play a football game at Bristol Motor Speedway in 2016.
“I think it has the chance to be a really nice event,” Virginia Tech Athletic Director Jim Weaver said. A big one, too.
The game could draw 160,000 fans, assuming 150,000 people don’t want to anywhere near the playing field.
Bristol’s half-mile NASCAR race track is paved, of course. In fact, the whole infield is asphalt, so putting in a playing field will be a neat trick.
The track is in Bristol, Tenn. Directly across the Tennessee-Virginia border is Bristol, Va. They share a downtown district. So a Tennessee-Virginia Tech game makes total sense, even more than Florida A&M-Ohio State.
The Hlist likes the idea of the game inside the racetrack, and hopes to one day see an Iowa-Indiana game at a famous Indiana speedway. Does it have one?
4. Un-Meet Virginia: Like Kansas-Missouri, Texas-Texas A&M, Pittsburgh-West Virginia and Nebraska-Oklahoma, another great rivalry has come to an end — at least for a while — because of conference realignment.
Maryland, which joins the Big Ten next season, met Virginia for the last time for the foreseeable future Saturday. The Terrapins and Cavaliers battled for the 78th time, and Maryland won by the slimmest of margins, 27-26. The teams have played each other every year since 1957.
“That’s probably the biggest rivalry that we have in football at the University of Maryland.” said Terrapins Coach Randy Edsall. “I know we got their best game today.”
But that’s all, folks.
“That is a negative byproduct of realignment,” West Virginia Athletic Director Oliver Luck told the Baltimore Sun. “On the flip side, our decision to go to the Big 12 means we are in a much more stable conference than we were in the past.”
That stability is good for somebody, but not fans who want to see their teams on the road. How stable is West Virginia making a 1,462-mile trip to Lubbock to play Texas Tech?
Iowa plays at Maryland on Oct. 18, 2014. It’s a nice little 903-mile trip for Hawkeye fans. The two teams will be conference “rivals” who have never played each other.
5. Fun on the Bayou: Tulane is 5-2. This is already the most wins it has had in a season since 2004, and it hasn’t had a winning season since 2002.
Coach Curtis Johnson told his team that it would get its coming bye-week completely off if it beat East Carolina Saturday in the Superdome. It did, 36-33 in triple-overtime.
The Hlist thought all teams didn’t have to practice on bye-weeks. Just kidding.
Johnson must be an OK guy. With his team needing a field goal to win in the third OT, he simply lined up for the game-winning kick on first-down. Cairo Santos made the 42-yarder, his fifth field goal of the day.
“Without a doubt I set up for the field goal on the first play, because when you have the best kicker in the nation, that’s what you do,” Johnson said.
6. Huzzahs for Huskers: Good for Nebraska. It has agreed to a home-and-away series with Oregon in 2016 and 2017.
“We were able to add the University of Oregon, a perennial top-25 program, to our non-conference schedule as we roll into the College Football Playoff era,” said Nebraska Athletic Director Shawn Eichorst.
Nebraska is openly talking College Football Playoff. What it should be quietly hoping is that Oregon football tapers off three years from now. Because if the Ducks’ offense met the Huskers’ defense in 2013 … messy.
The Oregon Trail went completely across Nebraska, by the way. The Hlist likes to pretend it knows things.
Finally, here’s an excellent essay by Patrick Hruby of SportsOnEarth.com on the absurdity of amateurism in college sports.
And here are some odd stats:
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