I'm Gus Johnson and I Get Buckets. They're doing this for every game he calls on BTN. I repeat: THEY'RE DOING THIS FOR EVERY GAME HE CALLS ON BTN:
It should really come as no surprise that BTN, which is run by trained executives who understand their niche audience and provide what they want before they even know what it is, would hear three years of Gus Johnson cheerleading from blogfrica and not only give us more of him but openly advertise it, while the Big Ten itself would focus group something as easy as division names and trophies within an inch of death and produce the worst possible option in the eyes of that same audience. University presidents: Get over yourselves and give us some more Gus Johnson.
This is Getting Ridiculous. At the beginning of the week, Iowa's already-depleted halfback depth chart included a true freshman as the starter, a career special teamer who has sat out basically the entire season with concussion issues as his backup, and a converted fullback in reserve. It was these three who were the only thing stopping Ferentz from taking a redshirt off D'Andre Johnson or resorting to Brett Morse as his primary ballcarrier.
Everyone who expects to get carries in today's Insight Bowl, please step forward NOT SO FAST CONVERTED FULLBACK:
Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz says fullback Brad Rogers will miss next week's Insight Bowl against Missouri, and the rest of this season's practices, because the freshman is undergoing heart tests.
So Angry Iowa Running Back Hating God strikes again. Just when you thought he'd used all his trump cards to win the "Your Would-Be Starter Who Tore His ACL Last Year Tears His Other ACL" and "Your Promising Sophomore Halfback Turns Out to Be Gob Bluth" tricks, he plays his "Your Last-Ditch Option Has Heart Problems" card to shoot the moon. Our response can best be summed up as this:
Of course, we hope it's nothing too serious; being reduced to two halfbacks for the Insight Bowl is nothing compared to honest-to-God heart issues. But someday we will write the history of this season, and it will tell of a man who lived in Uz, and his name will be Job, and we will be him, and there will be misery, and Paki O'Meara will be turned into a pillar of salt.
Transaction Report. As of Tuesday, we know three Iowa juniors filed paperwork with the NFL evaluation committee to determine where they might go in the April draft should they decide to leave early: WR Marvin McNutt, SS Tyler Sash, and CB Shaun Prater. According to McNutt and Sash, it's merely exploratory:
Iowa receiver Marvin McNutt was asked if he would return to the Hawkeyes. "Right now, that’s my focus," McNutt said, "but you never know what could happen. It’s really a no-comment-type of answer."
Junior safety Tyler Sash is another Iowa player who might have the option of exiting early. "The plan right now is to come back," he said. "Things could change. I’m not sure 100 percent, but the plan right now is to come back."
We say "as of Tuesday" because we never know if we've received anything approximating full information from Ferentz; for all we know, Riley Reiff is leaving early, Marcus Coker is going to play for the Frankfurt Galaxy of the long-defunct World League of American Football, and Don Nordmann found a long-lost year of high school eligibility to exercise. I would say it's unlikely that any of the three leave, but with NFL collective bargaining issues looking increasingly likely in 2012, and what will presumably be a rebuilding year on the way in Iowa City, it's certainly not out of the question.
A couple of articles examine the relationship between high school teammates Marvin McNutt and De'Vion Moore of Missouri. McNutt, apprised of Iowa's bowl opponent before his Hazelwood Central teammate, apparently spoiled the surprise by telling Moore "It's about to be fun." Let's hope so.
John Bohnenkamp grades Iowa's non-conference basketball performance on the eve of the Big Ten opener against Illinois. His assessment? Just under a 3.0 GPA, which is about right for a 7-5 team with a couple of semi-quality wins.
The 100-year gap between the last meeting between Iowa and Mizzou and today was caused by racial tension between the progressive stance of the University of Iowa and the segregation of post-Reconstruction era Missouri, according to an interesting piece from the Columbia Tribune. Well, that and the fact that Gary Pinkel feared Bob Sanders.
Clone Chronicles gives Gene Chizik the full-on Lebron treatment as Auburn prepares to take its talents to Glendale.
David Foster Wallace aficionados, get thee to your bookstores.