And so it begins.
I know, I know...the season officially began on Thursday. Hurricane Isaac took away what would have been my most desired early upset of the year (La Tech over Texas A&M), and we've already watched an overrated preseason top 10 (S. Carolina) barely squeak by a perennial cellar dweller from the conference we love to hate (Vanderbilt, SEC).
But today...today is the day...like the bowl of pasta bolognese at my favorite Italian restaurant...that I can't wait to consume, all of it, every last drop. Take the bread and sop up all the drippings, then sit back, groan in ecstasy, and swear I'm not gonna do that again for another week.
Some random observations after the jump...
- Notre Dame vs Navy...One question, and I heard this on the radio Friday...this game is being played in Ireland. How are the Fighting Irish NOT the home team?
- Boise State loses to a BCS top 25 team for the first time since 2005...is there anyone who doesn't root for this team? A program that has reached national relevance with relatively few "issues," plays hard, is extremely well coached, and is willing to do whatever is necessary to win. As @CowboysRFF said last night..."I don't care what anyone says about Boise. I'd never want to play them. Ever. Excellent program."
- Michigan vs Alabama (neutral site)...does anybody really think that Michigan can make a game of this? The braintrust at ESPN has been pumping Wolverine QB Denard Robinson, who is like trying to tackle a waterbug. Alabama sent their entire starting defense, waterboy, towel boy, etc, to the NFL, so does Nick Saban simply reload? I'll agree to this...Robinson brings a dynamic athletic ability that LSU would have paid handsomely to have on the field last January. Alabama's offense is not traditionally pitching the rock all over the place, so I think this game could definitely be competitive. Since Texas A&M (see above) got saved by Mother Nature, this has moved into the #2 spot on my "would really enjoy watching this team lose" upset of the week list. And yes, I'm talking about Bama. Stumble Tide.
- SMU vs Baylor...without question, this is #1 on my "would really enjoy watching this team lose" upset of the week list. If you think I'm talking about SMU, then you forgot to take your medication. It would not bother me ONE bit if Baylor went 0-fer in the Big 12. This survey from a couple weeks ago, thanks to @okc_Dave, clearly demonstrates that Oklahoma State fans are NOT fans of the Bears. I am firmly in that camp.
- Oklahoma vs UTEP...I have to admit, as much as I would enjoy seeing the Sooners experience an 0-10-1 season at some point, I'm not there yet. If OU's football goes south, the Cowboys will be dragged down with it. Not that OSU wouldn't benefit at all from having a weaker brother, but the Pokes look better when they have success alongside, and against, the Sooners when they are also good. Both programs succeed on a higher level when both are among the nation's best. That being said, Bob Stoops isn't on the hot seat, but it is starting to get lukewarm. It's been a while since OU has lived up to the hype, and Sooner Nation has been pretty patient.
- Wyoming vs Texas...thank heavens the Longhorns supposedly have the best defense in the Big 12, maybe in the nation, or this would be a toss up, thanks to McCash. This game is #3 on my "would really enjoy watching this team lose" upset of the week list, but let me be clear...Texas is right next to Baylor in the desire I have to watch them lose every game, including The Red River Shootout. How many chances do we have to say the Longhorns lost to the Cowboys twice in the same year? I mean, come on, we're not the SEC...
- Savannah St vs Oklahoma State...before I go any further, everyone can just shut up and get off OSU's back about scheduling this "opponent." Conference realignment had as much to do with this as anything, and really, what's the difference between this game and, say, North Texas vs LSU? Murray St vs Florida St? Jacksonville St vs Arkansas? A cupcake is a cupcake, no matter how you slice it. Season openers have always been more about Little Sisters of the Poor taking one for the team in order to rake in a big payday, as opposed to exposing your program to a nationally televised beating that could do irreparable harm to your BCS brand. So enough. OSU has a cupcake, and a chance to break in a new QB. Would anyone rather be playing Alabama today? That's what I thought.
That's it until after the game tonight. Fortunately, it's Savannah State, so I won't be a complete maniac sitting through the American Idol concert this evening. Thank goodness for Twitter, and Cablevision in CT which carries all the Fox College Sports channels. I'll put the the FF button on my new Tivo HD box to the test after the concert so I can present you with a semi-coherent recap of the slaughter.
Enjoy today while it lasts, cuz at 6pm central time tonight Oklahoma State will become the "defending" Big 12 Champions.