Yet another very strong crop of questions this week. Let's get right to it.
@Adam_Jacobi Serious question. Is Iowa good or bad at football? Spartan fan wants to know.— Bill S. (@seleskb) October 10, 2013
Yes. Like many mediocre teams, Iowa is capable of very good games and very bad games, and which you get out of the Hawkeyes is largely a function of how healthy the team's best players are and how adept your team is at countervailing Iowa's gameplan.
I know that's a very general answer that doesn't really answer your question, but it's a question that isn't particularly answerable at this time. Iowa could go 4-8 again (god I hope not but it's technically possible) or it could go 8-4. Both are within the realm of plausibility, particularly with some of the teams left on Iowa's schedule about as prone to schizophrenia as Iowa has been.
The baseline for the Hawkeyes is what it was 6 weeks ago, which is 6-6; Iowa appears on its way to meeting that mark, which most reasonable fans targeted as "about right" for a team of this caliber. So do you think MSU beating a .500 team by 12 points is a "good win" or a "bad win"? Serious question. My guess is that's why you asked, and the real answer is, hey, you tell me.
@Adam_Jacobi Let's pretend for a moment that Kirk Ferentz likes condiments. Which is his favorite?— Peter Berkes (@runthedive) October 10, 2013
I'm glad you asked, Peter Berkes of Twitter. Also, congratulations on your engagement! We at BHGP are very happy for you. Another Twitter user suggested brown mustard, and while that's not a bad guess, we would like to invite that other Twitter user to STAY THE HELL OUT OF OUR TERRITORY. WE PROVIDE THE ANSWERS AROUND HERE. I'M HEISENBERG etc. etc.
The correct answer is yellow mustard. For one, it's the color of Iowa's gold: kinda bright yellow-y, but also kinda orange-y, depending on the light. Second, it suits Kirk Ferentz's personality. It's not completely bland; it has flavor, just like Ferentz's offenses do try to get up and down the field just like real teams. It's just that it's pretty entry-level, just like Iowa's offense is not a whole lot more sophisticated than what you see anywhere else in the Big Ten. Or college football. The yellow mustard just needs to execute better, Kirk Ferentz tells himself as everyone else's sandwiches thrive with stone ground mustard.
@Adam_Jacobi what is the B1G version of playing a football game at a racetrack?— TROLL OR TREAT (@matt_T) October 10, 2013
The immediate answer is LOL ON A FARM but if you think about it, farms aren't really B1G. Like, yeah, there are a lot of farmers in Iowa and all, but ISU is the ag school, and the only B1G university that really goes hard in the ag sciences is Nebraska--and the AAU just booted the Huskers for it.
The rest of the Big Ten is more a bastion of academic elitism, from Chicago U to Northwestern on down to the rest. Iowa's probably the worst school academically in the bunch, and Iowa City is still the snootiest city in the state by a wide margin. It's a Prairie Lights location on top of an ivory tower (and I love the city so).
So to answer your question, the B1G version would be to play a football game in an independent bookstore, and if Ohio State complains, shut up Ohio State, you're an SEC program in the wrong state.
.@Adam_Jacobi: What's the most intriguing brass vessel-based rivalry game this weekend?— Old Brass Spittoon (@O_B_Spittoon) October 10, 2013
With all due respect to UCLA and California playing for the Smokin' Brass Bong, I would give the edge to the Ol' Brass Spittoon between Indiana and Michigan State.
I suspect we're dealing with a biased questioner on this one though. Just a hunch. Onward!
@Adam_Jacobi who's your favorite rassler— Pete (@sorryeveryone) October 10, 2013
Now THAT's a good goddamn question.
The rassler I always enjoyed the mosat the time that I was watching was Andre The Giant, because he was the only guy that seemed genuinely larger than life. Of course, I was a child when Andre Roussimoff was a wrestler, and I didn't even understand wrestling until he was in the twilight of his career (and his life, as it would be), so I totally didn't get that when he'd show up to matches in crutches and barely walk around, it wasn't actually due to some cowardly heel's sneak attack, and he wouldn't be coming back just as soon as his knee healed. I was like 10, I was still wrapping my head around the idea that wrestling was scripted. Hell, I still barely grasped the whole Santa racket--like, I knew he wasn't real, but I still figured some weird stuff happened at precisely midnight and I wasn't sure what. So yeah--still learning the ropes on reality at that point.
I know he wasn't the BEST of all time--shout out to Ric Flair and Dusty Rhodes in the NWA and Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage in the WWF--but I was always rooting for Andre the Giant the most. I didn't even care that he barely spoke the English language. He was so otherworldly that of course all he could say was "RAAAARRGH BLEEERRRGH" in his promos, because yeah, that's what I would say if I were some half-shaved yeti giant from the mountains of Europe too.
I still watch WWE, which I must confess I am not super proud of and which I don't even particularly enjoy for 2 of the 3 hours it's on every Monday. The faces cater to a very immature mindset and it can be a turnoff, but the heels, doomed as they may univerally be, provide enough of a character contrast that there's something worth listening to every week.
Who I enjoy in the WWE these days varies month to month or so, as do the wrestlers' roles. Knowing it's scripted doesn't disappoint me or anything like that--like, I'm aware--but I do have to confess that nobody fills me with anywhere near the awe that Andre the Giant did way back when. Probably nobody ever will again. So it goes.