The Hybrid is a weekly preview of every Big Ten game, plus relevant or whimsy games from the national slate.
Column's pretty loaded already today, so we skippin' the intro.
As a mini-apology, here's a Tim Tebow GIF I recently discovered:
Feels like we're ready.
Boise State at Virginia: Listen, this punt sucks, but it doesn't really suck enough to make this video worth watching. What does make it worth watching is the bad punt then nailing the dude. That's a worthy combo:
Calls back to an old favorite:
Idaho State Punter, please come collect your $10,000.
Stanford (21) at Virginia: David Shaw, I owe you an apology. Sure, you punt on the opponent's 27, run fullbacks into walls, and generally are the opposite of everything I want football to be. But I'll be gosh darned if you didn't somehow upset USC by double digits as road underdogs. After you put up a pretty worthless six points on Northwestern in Week 1, you were adamant your offense was going to improve as the season progressed. I mean, no one believed you, but you did turn out to be right. So hats off to you, David Shaw. You make Kirk Ferentz look like a gambler. Wait. He... kind of is one now. Do I need to update my "Conservative Coach X" template?
Kevin Hogan, I don't know what to say. ESPN called your performance against USC "nearly flawless". I saw that and thought "Kevin Hogan? My Kevin Hogan?" I mean, sure, you didn't break 300 yards, but 279 yards, 2 TDs, and 0 INTs is a performance no one can shake a stick at. Sure, your throwing motion makes
Tim Tebow's The Patriot's seem NFL ready, but I'll be gosh darned if you didn't stun the Trojans. One love, fam.
Kansas at Rutgers: What are the necessary steps to for real get Rutgers out of the Big Ten? What does this program bring to the table? Coaching suspensions, player suspensions, player arrests, and three points scored against Penn State? Good grief, man. Just pack it in.
BYU (22) at Michigan: This Old Dude Enjoying AC/DC While Everyone Around Him Looks Despondent clip really encapsulates the Big House and my life:
Michigan, ESPN may have called you "surging", but I'm not having it. You're somehow 5.5 point favorites in this game, but I'm more than ready to have the Jake Rudock Experience derail yet another Saturday in my life. For it is destiny.
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Also, I've spent way too much time giving love to Ohio State spin moves. So to counteract that: Jabrill Peppers, the floor is yours:
/typing Enhance. pic.twitter.com/0eaNI3ZGFE— Ace Anbender (@AceAnbender) September 21, 2015
Central Michigan at Michigan State (2): The No. 2 ranked team in the nation. The Michigan State Spartans. Let's see how Sparty handles the bullseye. Because once you're in the Top 2, it's no longer about winning. It's about style points, "overrated!", and scrutiny-scrutiny-scrutiny. The shoe might feel unfamiliar, but it doesn't mean they're incapable of wearing it.
Southern Mississippi at Nebraska: No idea what I'd be doing with my life right now if I were a Nebraska fan. "Touchdown" Tommy Armstrong has put those poor bastards through the ringer. You won't get those years back, Husker fans.
Georgia Tech (20) at Duke: We jock you all last week, GT, and that turd against ND is how you repay us? Be gone.
Southern at Georgia (7): I know the low hanging fruit when you're previewing Big School vs. Small School is to say something like "Jacksonville State? I've never even heard of that school!" but seriously: Southern? I have never even heard of that school.
LSU (8) at Syracuse: Hi, Leonard.
And of course my favorite part:
What was he tryna accomplish by jumpin trying to make the tackle? https://t.co/x5KuhNJX4L— Terrell Glowens. (@on_glo) September 19, 2015
I need you to understand: if I were a starting safety -- at any level higher than sixth grade -- I would make every single tackle attempt in this exact way.
The best is there's an article about the Auburn DB "moving forward" after getting owned by Fournette. The language in that headline is amazing. It's like he is trying to get over a personal tragedy. Upon reading the article, the quote -- of course -- came from former Michigan CB Blake Countess, because even when college football makes me happy, I can never be happy. But rest easy, Blake. The Getting Trucked By Leonard Fournette List is rapidly growing. Soon you'll have enough dudes on it to create a fraternity or something.
Bowling Green at Purdue: Nice shot at Purdue taken by Brian Cook at MGoBlog during his Michigan-UNLV recap:
In the game preview I predicted that UNLV would not get to 200 yards if their starting quarterback did not play. He played probably 2/3rds of the game and UNLV still barely scraped over that number thanks to a Purdue-Certified Make The Final Score Look Better drive and Jim Harbaugh declining a penalty on a play that ended the first half.
Indiana at Wake Forest: And continuing our new weekly feature: Did Indiana Give Up Points In The Third Quarter Last week?
Week 1: No
Week 2: No
Week 3: ...the dream is dea--holy shit, they actually shut out Western Kentucky in the third quarter in Week 3. Despite giving up 7, 21, and 7 in the first, second, and fourth quarters, the Hoosiers blanked 'em in the third. This streak is incredible. Indiana lives!
Let's celebrate with a cameraman who was just littttttttle too Nate Sudfeld focused:
Presented without comment. pic.twitter.com/fgMFfR1HdJ— Alex Bozich (@insidethehall) September 19, 2015
Maryland at West Virginia: Maryland gave QB Caleb Rowe the start against South Florida, and he had a pretty entertaining game (4 TDs, 3 picks), so we'll see if any of that volume translates in the WFV game.
Rice at Baylor (5): ZZZzzzzZZzzzZZZz.
North Texas at Iowa: Ohhhh-ho-ho-ho boy.
@bobbystompy You thought you were all in on this team before...— Patrick Vint (@HS_BHGP) September 20, 2015
Ferentz on rugby punt: "It's a new me."— John Bohnenkamp (@johnbohnenkamp) September 22, 2015
How great was that Pittsburgh game? Sure, the rest of college football might be making fun of us due to overreactions, but I say eff that. It's very satisfying to know you are experiencing a Signature Iowa Football Moment right as it's happening. I suppose "Game-Winning 57-Yard Field Goal Attempt" will cause anyone to take notice, particularly factoring in college kickers and whatnot. So hats off to Marshall Koehn. He may have killed those cheerleaders immediately after, but that winner will live on for a long time.
Ohio at Minnesota: It's like Minnesota and Northwestern are in this weird staring contest where they both acknowledge their stout defenses are propping up their bare bones offenses and even though we know it's not sustainable long term, no one has blinked yet and, oddly, no one's eyes are even watering.
Oklahoma State at Texas: I'm very bored with Texas, so it's nice when they can entertain us with the little things.
Tennessee at Florida: Y'all knew Florida was undefeated, right?
Massachusetts at Notre Dame (6): I ate a little crow on Stanford this week, but you are dead wrong if you think I'm gonna do the same for Notre Dame after the big Georgia Tech win. I had Notre Dame fan approval of the team's impending doom, I had extremely unfortunate key player injuries, and I had an airtight case, damn it! And you know what, with that starting safety now out for the year following a celebration injury, I'm doubling down on the doubt from last week. You hear me, Touchdown Jesus? The Irish are not making the playoff. They are not. How many more starters does this team have to lose to take a step back? Eleven? Because it feels like they're about halfway there. Sheesh.
(Seriously, do not watch that celebration injury. It's the dude's second ACL tear, and it's awful.)
Western Michigan at Ohio State (1): What the hell is wrong with you, Ohio State? Too many weapons? Too many options? The disease of more after winning a national title? I need real explanations. Because, like Oregon, it depresses me when you stumble. When the team with Everything can't consistently execute, what are fans of teams who Don't Have Everything supposed to feel about their chances?
San Diego State at Penn State: Any guesses on how many TDs Christian Hackenberg has thrown this season?
Because the answer is one. He... put up less than 150 yards last week and was outpassed by the Rutgers QB by over 100 yards.
Louisiana Monroe at Alabama (12): How weird does that No. 12 look next to Alabama? It looks so weird. Meanwhile, if we see "Iowa (12)", we all run up the stairs to heaven, where I'm told there is no beer. But whatever. Where do we even start with the Tide this week? Ross?
This is a perfect Vine. https://t.co/cLM3K7bYEz— RossWB (@RossWB) September 20, 2015
My favorite was probably when someone meme'd this play with "When You Don't Study For The Test But Still Get An A":
Fear not, Tide fans -- I have this to cheer you up:
I am almost addicted to her speech pattern and accent. That call could go on for eternity.
Middle Tennessee at Illinois: For those of you who missed UNC-Illinois, it was pretty comparable to this:
But, you know, now that no one believes in Illinois anymore (if they did before), it should be easier to get back on track with a definitively easier game.
TCU (3) at Texas Tech: Kliff Kingsbury -- who it must always be mentioned is a beautiful man -- threw some real shade at Bret Bielema, which was interesting:
Bielema responded with his typical tone deaf shit:
"I'm happy he got to vent and hopefully he feels a lot better," Bielema said Monday. "As a coach who has been in it for 10 years, I know better than to worry about somebody that's been around for a couple and they're .500. So we'll just go forward.
I was a little surprised Kingsbury even got into it at all, but then I remembered...
Because of that difference and his background, Kingsbury took umbrage to Bielema's allegedly saying at the conference that "if you don't play with a fullback, we'll kick your ass. And if you throw it 70 times a game, we'll kick your ass."
Kingsbury, whose father is a retired Texas high school football coach, on Saturday said those comments "definitely rubbed me the wrong way.
"[Bielema's] a prideful guy and he says what's on his mind, but it just hasn't worked out for him."
Kingsbury declined to respond following Bielema's latest jab, saying he's moved past it; probably for the best.
California at Washington: Cal is also undefeated/unranked.
Texas A&M (14) at Arkansas: Well, Aggies... Kliff gave you a job, so I s'pose it's time to do it.
Vanderbilt at Ole Miss (3): Just rank them No. 1. This is dumb. I shouldn't care. I don't care.
Mississippi State at Auburn: Gus, I love you, I still believe*... but I can't pass up an opportunity to burn Urban Meyer at your expens--ah damn it, GameDay took the tweet down. Well, if you didn't see it, it was a picture of a sign at College GameDay featuring a dejected Gus Malzahn and this caption: "If this crap keeps up, I’m going to fake a heart attack and go join the Big Ten."
(* - long term; you... seem very screwed for the rest of this year)
Though that joke is definitely something I'd say/laugh at in the comfort of my living room, I was pretty shocked to see GameDay name that their Sign of the Week. This lasted a day or two before Urban Meyer's always chirpy family threw a real classy pity party. People void of class were not invited.
Makes me sick. "Appropriate" my a**. Stick to what happens on the field. That's all y'all know anything about. https://t.co/X46VsELkcn— Gigi Meyer (@GG_40) September 20, 2015
Shame on the fan for that sign but even more shame on @CollegeGameDay for promoting such trash. Someone's health isn't a joke - classLESS.— Nicki Meyer (@Nicki_07) September 21, 2015
Haha, #stopthehate. Anyone who has ever been alive on this Earth has had neighbors like these at one point or another. And like the grass you had to cut or garbage cans you had to move over a few inches, GameDay took the tweet down and apologized.
I usually subscribe to the idea that most fans of most teams are kind of nuts but also kind of good and no one is really 'worse' or 'better' than the other, and I know I'm a Michigan fan so there's
some too much bias, but I really try to keep an open mind with tOSU, and they are making it so damn hard. I'm not sure I've ever seen a group of people take so little enjoyment out of a title defense before. Guys, you beat Alabama and, by proxy, beat the SEC. You beat Oregon. You did this with a third string quarterback. There are no knocks, there are no "buts", there are no counterarguments. You proved everyone wrong. You won it all. Urban Meyer, your coach, worked for ESPN and surely has a friend or two within the company. There is no conspiracy. So shut the hell up about haters and schedule bashers and regional biases. It was a tasteless sign probably made by some college kid who didn't think twice. It's not a parade of hate. Get the fuck over it, and don't waste breath giving it even more unnecessary attention. Just go out there, keep ya heads down, enjoy your stockpile of mega-talented players, take care of business... and always honor The Contract.
Sure, Urban Meyer now makes $6.5 mil a year in real money, but can you even put a price on his 2012 family contract? pic.twitter.com/BGEBmJpnTy— Bobby L (@bobbystompy) April 13, 2015
And Nicki, Gigi... please, please, please know: I will always be there for your volleyball games.
Missouri (25) at Kentucky: Mizzou beat UConn 9-6 last week in one of those games where you see the score and think to yourself "Man, even if my team won, I'm glad I didn't have to watch that." So this is a begrudging No. 25 team if there ever was one.
NC State at South Alabama: The Wolfpack are undefeated, but...
UCLA (9) at Arizona (16): Game of the Week.
I've passed the point of being able to preview anything RichRod does with even a semblance of objectivity. That, combined with my general "meh" feeling toward UCLA this year, should tell you all you need to know about my thoughts on this game's outcome.
Ball State at Northwestern (17):
Hawaii at Wisconsin (22): When You Play Hawaii But It's Not At Hawaii.
I'm sorry, Joel.
Utah (18) at Oregon (13): Legitimately interesting game. QB Vernon Adams sat last week as Oregon racked up 61 points playing two other QBs against Georgia State. But does he come back this week? Is his hand healthy enough? Probably not? Can Utah's defense slow Oregon down regardless? Is typically pro-Oregon Bobby possibly rooting against the Ducks solely to make Michigan's loss look better? (Yes to that last one.)
USC (19) at Arizona State: If you're anything like me and spent a small chunk of Saturday going "David Shaw Kevin Hogan Beating USC Zuhhhhhh Duhhhh Wuhhhh????", I think I finally have our answer: I forgot to mention "Sark After Dark" in my USC preview last week. It was me, you guys. I doomed the Trojan season. I failed them. I failed Troy.
To atone, I will mention it again like always, and to show I'm really sorry, I even made a picture:
SARK AFTER DARK.
Every time until it busts again. Promise.
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Wrapping It Up...
As always, I'll give Gigi Meyer the last word.
One of the most loving, selfless, and strongest ppl I know. Damn proud of him. pic.twitter.com/izdixJVxyj— Gigi Meyer (@GG_40) September 20, 2015
Bobby Loesch is a weekly contributor to Black Heart Gold Pants. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy or e-mail at bobbyloesch [at] gmail.com.