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In this week's college football games preview, Bobby Loesch GIFs the hell out of Ole Miss, previews the regular season Game of the Year, and high fives Trevone Boykin.

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

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

Listen, I get it.

Sports can turn into a bit of a dog and pony show sometimes. Consider: college coaches are millionaires and the "amateurs" they profit from don't make squat, losing tennis players are forced to give in-arena speeches* after heartbreaking matches because it's still deemed courteous, the Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest will probably kill a human one day, and Roger Goodell makes over $30 million dollars a year to be a pud's pud.

(* - sometimes in multiple languages)

We as fans have to reconcile these oddities and either roll with them or stop following all together.

In college football, preseason rankings probably shouldn't exist. They're off, sometimes flat out wrong, and it doesn't always set the best table for the upcoming season. Some teams are constantly spurned, while schools like Michigan and Notre Dame can vault into the Top 25 just for walking and chewing gum at the same time.

But as Clay Travis pointed out in a long ass column he wrote about Internet sportswriting and coaching hires, sports fans don't care about what is, because they are exponentially more interested in what might be. That's why speculation articles like "Top 10 Miami Coaching Candidates" always get more traction than "BREAKING: Johnny Dumbass Hired At Northeast Blah Blah Blah University". At the point of conclusion -- when the coach is hired or the last team left wins the championship -- you're simply looking at a fact that's there. It's no longer interesting going forward. We love to rank teams and re-rank and complain about School X's piss ass conference, and, when all else fails, say the team we dislike most "ain't played nobody."

There are millions of dollars at stake, so you need flawed preseason rankings. It's how you get eyeballs on TV sets in Week 2 when a Top 10 school might not be a Top 10 school (Auburn Auburn Auburn Auburn). In years past, we had the BCS rankings to help stir the pot once the season progressed, but now we have something new. Hence this meandering intro to my overall point: the debut of the shiny new College Football Playoff Rankings are driving everyone (read: Iowa fans) over-the-edge insane, and I question whether these should even exist.

I do not expect change. They will always be, as college football is and always has been a sport bred to thrive on controversy, scandal, and, to put it bluntly, hate. With its counterpart, college basketball, you're not going to stay up till 1 a.m. rooting against UCLA in a random conference game vs. Arizona State because the Bruins losing might help your team in some way ("They're one spot above us!"). You likely do not give a shit.

But in CFB? This is the norm. We want everyone to lose. We want our rivals to lose and suffer. We want to argue why we're not ranked in the preseason, get pissed we're not ranked high enough when we do get ranked, and then fully boil over when media troll blowhards -- I am not naming names, but if you know, you know -- say an undefeated Iowa would not make the College Football Playoff.

In the great Southern words of Johnny Moxon, "I say fuhhk. that."

Man, like... I got an e-mail from my buddy Crooks -- one of the biggest Iowa fans I know -- which turned into this deconstruction of the Baylor Bears, their schedule, and everything they stand for. It's early November. I am not interested in talking about why Baylor is inferior to Iowa. Because you know what? If we lose to Indiana this weekend, we're all idiots. Iowa doesn't need our mainstream media rebuttal. This isn't March Madness. Instead, here is a tweet I am going to post ten times, so we never have to talk about this again.

So if you want to look at playoff pairings and see the dang tiger hawk logo next to the Ohio States and LSUs and Clemsons of the world and dream of possibilities, by all means. I'm not here to rain on your parade. Project and enjoy.

Just don't feed the trolls. Please, please do not feed the trolls. Probably don't hate every other team that exists. Only some. We have plenty of time to coexist in this thing and outrun the competition.

No, Iowa! Nooooooooooooooo:

I don't even know why I'm ranting anymore -- you know how this Playoff is gonna end up when the dust settles:




Northern Illinois 32, Toledo 27:



Baylor (6) at Kansas State: I mean, I guess.

Friday Night Lights

Waubonsie Valley (30) at Neuqua Valley (19): My high school alma mater is hosting our crosstown rivals in the second round of the IHSA playoffs. Mikey Dudek has informed me he will be in the house. They call this game the War of 204. The first and only other time this game occurred in the playoffs, it came down to a game-winning FG:

Ryan Mulhern Game Winning FG vs. Waubonsie Valley in the 2012 Playoffs

Best of luck under the lights, young men.


Penn State at Northwestern (21): Aw, what up, ranked Northwestern? Please stay ranked, ranked Northwestern. This game is actually not bad, ever since Penn State became secretly interesting.

Also interesting? This now somewhat dated Halloween video of the Northwestern players practicing in costumes that I'm gonna post anyway.

Illinois at Purdue: You know, when Mikey said he'd be coming home, I flat out assumed Illinois was on bye. Oh well.

And, for (maybe) the first time ever, real Purdue football content!!! (Stop groaning, you guys.)

Don't worry -- it's still me. We can't not end with a little bit of a diss:

Vanderbilt at Florida (10): My by far favorite thing about the "SEC Myth" video which made its rounds this week was the Vanderbilt references.

* * *

As for UF... if you kind of single out the mascots and look at them individually, there's an argument to be made that they're actually kinda scary.

GHOSTGATOR is watching you sleep.

Kentucky at Georgia: Who doesn't want to party with the Pillsbury Throwboy? Also, how has there never been anyone close to him in QB fatness since? We are not counting you, JaMarcus.

Notre Dame (5) at Pittsburgh: It is revolting to see Notre Dame in the Top 5. Care to comment, Horrible Person Brian Kelly?

Douche, douchedouche, douche douche.

But don't say I was all negative:

Stanford (11) at Colorado: David Shaw's team has driven me to a point where I can only quote myself.

Kevin Hogan passed for 86 yards against Wazzu. This netted him 0 TDs and a pick. On the ground, however? ONE HUNDRED AND TWELVE YARDS WITH TWO TDs AND A LONGEST RUN OF 59 YARDS?! KEVIN HOGAN?!!! OUR KEVIN HOGAN?!!!!!!!!

College football is not to be understood.

Virginia at Miami (FL): Like anyone else, I was pretty riveted by the Miami/Duke crazy laterals ending, but only a few days removed, we've hit full burnout with replays and officiating controversies (though the crew getting suspended was pretty great).

While I was gonna link the radio call (ehhh) and a tweet about how Miami had 23 penalties for 194 yards (haha), all I really have the energy to put up is the glorification of Backpack Guy.

We are all Backpack Guy.

Florida State (16) at Clemson (1): Ooooh, Clemson gonna kill 'em. And with the Tigers sitting at No. 1 in the SUPER IMPORTANT mid-season College Football Playoff Rankings, now is as good of a time as ever for Clemson Tom's triumphant return to The Hybrid.

Finally, we get our revenge game against the Florida State Criminoles. I hate them of the passion of 1,000 burning suns. The good part is they hate us just as much. Any FSU fan will tell you they don't have trouble beating Clemson. That's actually 100% legit. They had some great teams in the past while we were trying to rebuild and move forward with the program. Luck of the draw, I guess.

Either way, they're finally going to be on the receiving end of this ass kicking. Someone told me this week that this Florida State team was "hungry".  I'm glad they are hungry. We are serving ass kicking sandwiches and dinner is served at 3:30pm at the 50-yard line.

Clemson has finally earned -- not given, but earned -- the No. 1 spot in the country. You can plan on the players using this type of motivation and really taking it to Florida State and Molly-whopping them all over the field, just to put the cherry on top of the cake. This week. I went to Tallahassee and "borrowed" their horse, Renegade. I changed his name to Thomas Green Clemson, and I have moved him to Clemson, South Carolina. It's about time he gets to hang around winners. We are pissed off for this win, and you can bet your last dollar that not only will we beat Florida State, but we will cover that spread handsomely.

Even for a dish of ass kicking sandwiches, 3:30 p.m. feels early for dinner.

Arkansas at Ole Miss (18): All Laquon, all the time.

We know, Hugh. We know.

We know, Robert. We know.

Army at Air Force:


Arizona State at Washington State: I truly believe the Cougs' loss to Stanford was some kind of wonky moral victory. Oddly, it was the defense that carried them through for a long portion of the game. Fucking college kickers, man.

Bowl eligibility can happen this week.

Iowa (9) at Indiana:

Like some of you, I was a little scared about Indiana. My moment came when I saw the 6-ish spread, but now that the line up to a true 7, I'm feeling a little better. Though Indiana can definitely move the ball -- and Nate Sudfeld is a maniac's maniac, truly capable of anything -- you have to remember Indiana fields Indiana's defense. It's like a lingering fart in room full of excited, bewildered people. Because even if Iowa goes down early, we have... The New Streak (that was hiding in plain sight this whole time!).

Did Indiana's Defense Give Up Points In The Fourth Quarter? Against MSU? Are you kidding me? They gave up 24.

Indiana's defense has given up points in the fourth quarter of every game this season. And if the Iowa game follows this trend, it is very likely that total could be in the double digit range. Shouts out to MGoroman for pointing this out in the comments a few weeks ago. The Indiana D is just the best.

Wisconsin at Maryland: Mehhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Rutgers at Michigan: As a Michigan fan, it should always be known I have a complicated relationship with Jim Harbaugh. He's unarguably an ass, but what separates him from jackass vs. evil ass (hello again, Brian Kelly!) are things like this:

That makes me hate him while simultaneously softening somehow on him at the same time. I mean, I truly believe he truly believes this stuff. He's like a Chuck Norris mixed with Bill Brasky in the body of a Midwestern dad who cares too much about his son's playing time.

Harpaw, on the other hand...

Harpaw forever. I also think I need to start watching M games in a cookie monster suit, regardless of it being Halloween or not.

TCU (8) at Oklahoma State (14): Death To HighFiveGate.

Real recognize real; that has been and will always be the case.

* * *

Also, how 'bout them Cowpokes?! Bizzaro Iowa roared back against Texas Tech this week, dropping 70 in a come-from-behind win. They're exactly like us!

Cincinnati at Houston (25): Houston still undefeated.

Navy at Memphis (13): As is Memphis. Man, I hope they make the Playoff.

Iowa State at Oklahoma (15): Do we really have to do the thing where we care about Oklahoma's national relevance again?

Michigan State (7) at Nebraska: Nebraska fans are like a coworker who's more of an acquaintance than friend who went through a bad breakup then had, like, a parent die. Hit after hit each week. And you know you're supposed to feign care about this constant misery, only you're not sure how to show it. I mean, you're not gonna call Nebraska fans on the phone to ask how they're doing, right? And where the hell is that spreadsheet that was due last Monday?

* * *

Yes, I should have led with you, Michigan State. You're considerably more worthy. But I just have nothing left to say about your good-maybe-great-maybe-flawed team until the Ohio State game. You beat Michigan, you took my soul, and things are looking quite sunny right now. So Kirk Cousins, the floor is yours!

This probably needs to be in every MSU preview following Spartan victories from now until this column's untimely demise.

Utah (12) at Washington: Meh. The Utes really could lose this one, too.

LSU (2) at Alabama* (4): Game of the Week. Game of the Year, probably.

Someone on Twitter called this game "Manball Christmas", which slayed me. But it really is. You have Leonard Fournette, who is maybe the best college RB since Adrian Peterson, going up against some monsters on the other side of the ball. And you're nuts if you don't think Derrick Henry wants to seize some of the spotlight for himself in this RB matchup. Because he's, uh, somewhat qualified.

After practice workouts every week with the best . #Bama #WeWORKIN

A video posted by Derrick Henry (@last_king_2) on

This game is like the Monstars from "Space Jam" scrimmaging each other.

Saban is Bill Murray because they both have weird, straying hair. So, more like "Kingpin" Bill Murray.

(* - ZOMBIE ALABAMA; seriously, they're already in the Playoff)

Minnesota at Ohio State (1): After all that hype, who's ready to go back to the Big Ten?!?! Minnesota, you do not seem ready.

Even though the events existed decades apart, it's almost like that GIF inspired the "Benny Hill" theme to existence.

So yeah, Minny might not be ready. What about you, tOSU?

Good grief.

Urban Meyer Feelings Chart

Was there... any other choice besides NAZI-ISH after that tweet?

Speaking of good versus... something else, what the hell happened to our man J.T. Barrett? Last week, the biggest waves he caused came by defending his "weenie arm", but now this OVI* arrest over the weekend? With Cardale Jones being the guy who came to pick him up? Sweet, glorious irony. Hopefully Barrett can turn things around soon; he always was a favorite. Urban Meyer smells.

(* - DUI, basically; Ohio is stupid)

* * *

Wrapping It Up...

Big boy football comin'.

Bobby Loesch is a weekly contributor to Black Heart Gold Pants. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy or e-mail at bobbyloesch [at]