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Sure, hope is dead... but there's still a lot left to live for. Fake punts, Gary Nova, and a weird week of games.

Alex Goodlett

The Hybrid is a weekly preview of every Big Ten game, plus relevant or whimsy games from the national slate.

What more can I say to you? You've heard it all.

Iowa is too conservative, Iowa loses a lot as a double digit favorite, Iowa was bested by Iowa State again. Even the conference sucks. One win against a Power 5 team. That team was Washington State. I also like Washington State, so that stat somehow found a way to zing me twice. Stupid stat. Stupid conference.


It makes football not fun.

But here we are. Do we shake off the non-conference loss and focus on the Big Ten slate? Call for Kirk Ferentz's head? Drink?

Probably B and C. Also, if you somehow haven't read Patrick Vint's Iowa-Iowa State recap, please read every word of that instead of this. It will probably be the first and last time I compare him to Kendrick Lamar.

So yeah, shit sucks. But this is the thing... this week has some pretty good ga--actually, this week of games kinda sucks, too. But I still say you read this column. If not for me, for the Arkansas State fake punt failure breakdown. Because you know it's coming. It will be our savior.

The Hybrid?



Auburn (5) at Kansas State (20): Whoa. This game is seriously tonight? How have I heard nothing of this? This is a really good game!

/looks up the spread

Auburn by 7. Well, still. Man, when did Auburn get into the Top 5? I mean, Top 10, sure? But Top 5? Gus Malzahn is the best. I remember making a spirited case (while also trolling my 'Bama coworker) for why Malzahn might be the greatest college football coach of all-time if he won the national title last year. He... did not win the national title last year.

Friday Night Lights



Eastern Michigan at Michigan State (11): Woo, Sparty is off bye week. Can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm legitimately excited to have them back in the fold. This type of sentiment proves they are by far the best Big Ten team.

Bowling Green at Wisconsin (19): Bowling Green has Indiana's blood, Wisconsin. And now they want YOURS!!!

Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech: And here I was thinking it *wouldn't* be funny if V-Tech beat tOSU then lost the next week. You do you, V-Tech.

Iowa at Pittsburgh: We should feel a kinship with Pitt for many reasons, but don't take my word for it. Listen to this week's Black Heart Gold Podcast. There, the Pitt guest they had on...

- Said a point of emphasis going into the week was making sure Pitt fans didn't wear Steelers jerseys to the games (because they'd look like Iowa fans, you see)

- Said his food spread for the game was going to be "rice crispy treats and horseradish"

- Predicted a 6-2 final score for the game (though he didn't pick a winner)

Iowa. Pitt. We are not two, we are one.

Western Illinois at Northwestern: I was driving into Chicago yesterday, and I saw Northwestern's stupid "Chicago's Big Ten Team" billboard. I... somehow never noticed the "N" was emphasized before.

They're idiots.

This picture forever.


Really not sure what kind of accent I was going for there. If pressed, I guess I'd say petulant child on a daytime talk show who hails from the South but not the South-South... maybe like a Nashville.

Maryland at Syracuse: This is going to be a basketball game for the ages, you guys.

Maine at Boston College: Holy fuck, BC. What the hell was that last week? I'm not one for gaudy rushing numbers, but, but... 452 total rushing yards to USC's 20!! And SC only lost by six. Easily will be a finalist for one of this year's WTF games.

Florida at Alabama (3): My Alabama coworker was trying to get me hyped for this game. I think I just kept saying "No. No. No. And I hope you don't even have fun watching it."

Utah at Michigan: There are few things I care about more than pace...

...hate you always, Michigan.

Texas A&M (6) at SMU: Every A&M game is automatically making this list from now on until they let us down. And it's college football, so they definitely will let us down.

Virginia at BYU (21): case anyone was looking for a reason to root against BYU.


/realizes Navy is in Maryland

...damn it!

Also, if Rutgers QB Gary Nova isn't one of your Top 10 favorite players in all of CFB, you're doing something wrong. Our man threw 5 INTs last week, and, to top that off, well... this happened:


The headline: Rutgers' Gary Nova tries to throw from five yards past the line of scrimmage

Almost undersells it. Somehow.

In conclusion, this tweet.


Indiana at Missouri (18): Kind of a cool game, actually. Imagine if Indiana wasn't in it.

Texas State at Illinois: Before we say Mikey Mania is dead, he did have 5 catches for 43 yards against Washington. It was in a bad Illinois loss, but it's not like it was his fault. NOTHING IS EVER HIS FAULT. That said, if we're gonna shine the spotlight on any Illinois WR, it should be GEROINMOOOOOOOOOOOO Allison for his 180 yards/6 catch/2 TD performance. What's a mania synonym that starts with a "G"?

/checks thesaurus

/virtually nothing

/keeps scrolling down


Geronimo Gaiety it is!

Massachusetts at Penn State: Ohhhh, you lucky sucks. Hack Attack bails you out again. You almost lost to Nova! Nova!

Reason to feel bad for Penn State: Rutgers being kinda d's about stuff last week.

Reasons to not feel bad for Penn State:

- lol totally misguided joe out

- /facepalm

Die, Penn State.

You know what would be kind of funny? If a rival did that just to make them look bad *and* get out of tipping. Someone needs to try that with a "GO CLONES" sometime*.

(* - jk, don't ever, ever screw over people in the service industry)

San Jose State at Minnesota: A random ass game buried in the middle of the afternoon? Not our Minnesota! NOT MAH PRESIDENT.

Mississippi State at LSU (8): Seems cool on paper, but I bet there's a double digit spread/plenty of room for suck.

/looks up

Only a 9 point spread! I'm back in!!!

Northern Illinois at Arkansas: Sure, why not.

Oklahoma (4) at West Virginia: Legitimately like this game, and you cannot stop me.

South Carolina (14) at Vanderbilt: Eh.

Clemson (22) at Florida State (1): Game of the Week.

The Thursday Nighter might be a better pure football game, but this one's got all the intrigue. Seriously, when have we ever been able to say a QB was suspended for a half due to publicly shouting an Internet meme? Man, Jameis. I cannot wait till he's out of college football. I don't ever remember an athlete so quickly coming up, being The Man, winning everyone over... then just losing it, like poof. Come on, Tigers. Build a lead. Then fend his ass off when he *does* come back in. Keep him out of rhythm. Fuck him right in the pussy. Or something. I can't believe that's what it took to finally get his ass suspended.

Miami (FL) at Nebraska (24): Finally. Fuck this game, we're talking about the fake punt last week. For those of you living under all of the rocks, please consult this article. Actually, you probably don't even need to click that link -- I'm just gonna excerpt, like, all of it anyway. So, to set this up: Miami was playing Arkansas State, Arkansas State decided to fake a punt, and then things ended up getting a little too real.

You guys. I mean. Has any sight on a football field ever brought you such childish joy?

Still skeptical? What if I told you, during the same play, he got up -- then got blown up.

Part of me will always be bitter the Vine cuts off before he fully falls back down again, but, in a way, it almost makes it that much more perfect.

The most underrated part of the play? The ball getting intercepted was actually a good thing!

...The (Arkansas State) punter, Luke Ferguson, ends up tossing one into double coverage well, well short of the receiver in such a way that the only possible player who could catch it was one of these two guys, who are on the wrong team.

This, all things considered, is the best part of this play. If Ferguson's throw had gone incomplete, Miami would've taken over on their own 41. Instead, it's intercepted, and the ensuing return by Raphael Kirby only makes it to their own 31. So, this pass being so bad that somebody had to intercept it probably netted the Red Wolves about 10 yards. Of course, punting might've worked better than ... you know ... this.

For some reason, interviewed the Arkansas State coach about the Play Dead Punt Pass. Him:

"Because of the formation we were in for that fake punt, Booker was covered up and couldn't go downfield, or it would be a penalty," Anderson told College Football 24/7. "So we said, 'What do we want to do with him? Do we want to bubble him or peel him out?' Someone said let's just let him be a fainting goat. I loved it, so we just put that in..."

I loved it, too.

"Coach, is there anything depressing you'd like to add?"

"...These kids have had five head coaches in five years, so we try to let them have fun."


Something about that makes him sound like a foster parent to a home of orphans.

As for the actual Nebraska-Miami game, you should know the deal by now. If Ameer Abdullah goes off, it's curtains for The U. If Miami QB Brad Kaaya can assert himself with a more expanded playbook, they'll have a puncher's chance.





Oregon (2) at Washington State: Wazzu was, like, a 17 point home underdog when this line came out. It's since gone up to 23. Don't worry, some Cougs fans are expecting a win due to a Drake-based reverse curse.

I'm... not kidding.

Oh, almost forgot. Week 3's game...

Did Connor Halliday limit his interceptions to one or two a game? Yes.
How many interceptions did he throw?
Two. Again.
Who did Washington State lose to? Naw, they actually won. They beat Portland State and he threw for 544 yards and 6 TDs.


* * *

Wrapping It Up...


Bobby Loesch is a weekly contributor to Black Heart Gold Pants. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy.