"A League Of Our Own"

Dec 9,’13:   Saturday was “a bountiful feast” for fans of college football.  Comparable I guess to either of several weekends of March Madness for college basketball fans.    I risked carpal tunnel syndrome working the remote back & forth.   As regular readers know, I had particular interest in goings-on at The Georgia Dome.   That got messy at the end but fans in Columb-ia (MO) likely handled the day's outcome better than their counterparts in Columb-us (OH). Ouch!      

Will Conference Championship Day ever ignite celebrations in central North Carolina?.....

Is college football “a Journey or a Destination”?   For local area fans of reasonable adult maturity, I suggest it better be “a journey”.  As for the cross-eyed goober species regardless of their partisan affiliation.... well, who cares?

Both Mary Ann Foxe (remember her?) and Frau have boldly predicted that the only obstacles twixt WuffNation and BCS Glory were removed by their hiring of (insert names of Amato or Doeren respectively).    

Meanwhile 28 miles to the west, “ye olde sleeping giant” snores away making Rip Van Winkle seem like an insomniac by comparison.  BOTBob and his fat cat cronies thought they had bought the magic beans with The Butcher.  That whizbang plan blew up with Hiroshimatic results and the smell of cordite still lingers in the air over beautiful Franklin Street.

An hour west, as Jim Grobe packs up his personals, there may be a Deac or two that thought 2006 was rarified air that once breathed could become addictive.   Maybe if Brian Piccolo, Norm Snead, Ricky Proehl and Bill George could all reassemble.... but “going to Shreveport” three outta five years is more likely.   When introducing “da new guy”, who thinks Ron Wellman is going to say “Look out Alabama.... here comes Mighty Wake Forest!”

Did the first few three & outs by Jimbo’s Juggernaut give any Duke loyalists hope that maybe just maybe Cut’s Wally Warriors could SHOCK The BCS?   Hey, no one gave Coach K’s kids a chance against Tark’s Thugs in 1991 and ya know how that turned out.    Alas, Davids & Goliaths are much more likely in basketball than in the more physical trenches of football.

That “the Sara Lee of coaches” had his “good kids” atop The Coastal Division is very cool and beyond commendable.  Plaudits aplenty for Good Neighbor Dave and his Devils.   And a thank you to the ACC schedule gods that spared The Wally Warriors from playing the Dabos and Jimbos Juggernaut in the regular season.

Schedule gods also were most gracious to Mizzou’s Tigers who caught UGa and UF in funk seasons and were spared encounters with Bama, Auburn and LSU in the regular season.   Such schedule anomalies will be critical in this era of “divisional conferences”.  Board monkeys can add “the schedule guy” to “the refs” on their lengthy lists of “evil people out to get us because _______”.

To the east..... if your team is touting it’s selection to Beef O’Brady’s Bowl..... THAT is not a stepping stone to college football’s elite.   Along a similar vein, The Purple Ruff-ians whuppings of both UNC and State did not create a ripple of interest in places "where college football is a religion”.  That those victories REALLY mattered regionally is fine but I’m just saying.

If sitting at the Big Boy Table of college football was a matter of signing 1-2-3 exceptional players then both Carolina and State would have multiple BCS bling in their “Football Centers” ..... Kenan and Murphy respectively.  They don’t.

State has THREE starting QBs in the NFL with two being legit superstars and the third doing quite well for a rookie.  Three !!!  Alabama does not have a single one.  Neither does LSU or Ohio State.   Ya think they would trade their over-flowing trophy cases for “we got THREE NFL QBs!!”

Carolina has a QB alumnus who won a National Professional Championship last month – Darien Durant won the Grey Cup for Saskatchewan.  I’m sure you all knew that, but thought I would remind you.   

Gio Bernard.... Andre Brown.... Peppers..... Nicks..... Sweezy..... and dozens more currently on various rosters.   Retired alums like Saturday and Holt...... Both schools have had very talented athletes don their colors over the past decade or so yet neither one has enjoyed any notable team success other than backyard braggin’ rights.

If your team’s bowl successes were in games with whozit sponsors in secondary tier cities..... then your program is not scaring “the big boys”.

Yes, your team might fashion the occasional upset that sends your student section “stormin’ the field” and create local legend status for a Barth but when December rolls around you ain’t headed to any burg with an International airport.

Is that OK?  It is to me.

If there was such a person as an impartial authority on such matters, I’m not sure how they might compare Larry Fedora and Dave Doeren as either being “the next Saban, Shoop, Briles, Malzahn, et al”.   There is always "a next generation".   I can find aplenty of blind partisan goobers who will swear “our guy” is WONDERFUL ‘cause he is “our guy”..... and he says all the “right stuff”.    

“Our steely-eyed guy who says all the right stuff” ranks right along with “I have a can’t miss restaurant concept based on my grandma’s spaghetti sauce”.   Used restaurant equipment stores are always busy for a reason.  ADs (not named Dickie) keep “short lists” in their desk drawer for a reason.

If Larry or DaveWho or DaveSaraLee or Ruff can win 7-8-9 games/year for 5-6 years that, IMO, would be very cool.   Assuming, of course, that those wins include more than 50% over “arch rivals”.

7-8-9 Ws, of course, will not satisfy the goggle-eyed goober gang AT ALL.   Those wretched souls with their dead-end lives DEMAND a vicarious throne upon which they can sit to have their picture taken pretending “they” had actually accomplished something special.   

Such sad wretched souls in Tuscaloosa, Baton Rogue, Columbus, Norman, Austin, Gainesville, Lincoln and Eugene are pouring battery acid in their eyes today and punching holes in sheet-rock walls.   To “not be one of them” should be on everyone else’s Christmas list.   I really hope it’s on yours.

Allowing that The USA DID beat Russia in 1980 and Butler came within a frog hair of cutting down the BIG nets in 2010..... you can get all YIPPEE when your team 'o choice signs a 4-star..... when they sign 8-10 “elite players” each year for three years in a row, let me know.      

Never forget...... the games that count in November and December are won by “the teams with the best 3rd team O-lines”.  Football, like infantry warfare, is all about “attrition”.   Eisenhower, Napoleon, Caesar, Saban, Belichek, Bowden and Cutcliffe all understand that.

Weepin’ & moanin’ that “we’da won if only (Underwood, Renner, Campanero) had not gotten hurt” means you don’t get it.

Our annual “make fun of all the silly over-hyped bowl games” will be forthcoming.  Meanwhile start counting how many thug-aletes will be “suspended indefinitely and/or kicked-off” for unspecified violation of team rules.    The over-under every December is 36.  The record set in 2011 was 68 nation-wide.

Congrats to Arizona and Boston College for winning this year’s Christmas In Shreveport sweepstakes.  Put a quarter in the slots at the Bossier City casino for BobLee.  .... and enjoy a bowl o’ gumbo too.


"Hiroshimatic" and the line about "used restaurant equipment" have already been submitted to the Internet Smart-aleck Quips library.

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Posted: December 09, 2013 at 1:07 PM by SaidWHATMedia | with 12 comments
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What was thuggish about the 1991 UNLV team? LJ, Stacy Augmon, and Greg Anthony all seem like perfectly fine people to me. Were they considered thugs? I don't seem to recall that. They were *GOOD*, yes, and supposed to easily beat Duke, but I don't remember them being considered violent or dirty.

BL: Playing for Jerry Tarkanian, Julie Andrews and the Von Trapp Family would have been perceived as "thugs".
12/10/2013 4:20:46 PM

It is interesting that fans from average institutions of higher learning, whose athletic supporters pay average to less than average to the athletic department somehow expect their AD to change water to wine, make silk purses from sow's ears and chicken salad from...well you get the idea. We all fall into the generalizing from small samples trap. Program building requires money . time and luck, if you want a perennial powerhouse.
I am fine with the Beef O'Brady, Belk and maybe catching lightning in a bottle every 20 years.

BL: Me too. By far the happiest college sports fans I have known in six years were Deacons post-Orange Bowl. They were euphoric and very much aware they had indeed "caught lightning in a bottle".

No BS about "a sleeping giant" yadda yadda.
12/10/2013 12:22:39 PM

Well, the first suspensions are in. Who would have guessed it would have been over a snowball fight, though? And yes, the highest profile player suspended is a second-or-third stringer.

BL: Never forget the Torbush Rule. Find a walk-on and sacrifice him "for the good of the team".

Sacrificial walk-ons are a bowl season tradition like no other.
12/10/2013 9:59:03 AM

Betcha didn't know..... some guy from Denver kicked "the longest FG in NFL history" on Sunday breaking Tom Dempsey's 40+ year old record.

You remember Dempsey for only having half-a-foot and kicking straight on BUT did you know that.....

Tom Dempsey's holder that fateful day in 1970 was NC State alum JOE SCARPATI !!!

Betcha Frau doesn't know that.
12/10/2013 8:52:13 AM

BobLeeSays UPDATE:
WFU's Ron Wellman announced Tuesday that "As of today, UNC is "THE ONLY school in the legendary Big Four without a football head coach named Dave/David".

This adds to UNC's previous uniqueness as "THE ONLY school in The Big Four with an AD named Bubba."

WuffNation immediately countered with "we have the ONLY AD who has one of Bob Kennel's scarves."
12/10/2013 8:14:29 AM

Nick Long
Since I know you are such a big fan of at least two of this year's nominees' work, I am curious how you are going to vote for NC Sportscaster of the Year. As you know, the nominees are:

David Glenn, The David Glenn Show, Raleigh

Gary Hahn, NC State Wolfpack Network/Learfield, Raleigh

Jeff Charles, ECU Pirate/IMG Sports Network, Greenville

Bob Harris, Duke/IMG Sports Network, Durham

Inquiring minds want to know. . .

BL: Was not aware, but since you asked....

Glenn and I have a blood feud that is now 8-9 years old. so he's out.

Harris is a regular reader here, so I'll support Bob.

Jeff I don't know at all but I'm sure, like Gary, he is a prince of a fellow.

Obviously the nominating committee missed my Good Sports interview with the Fabulous Comparato Twins.
12/9/2013 11:58:14 PM

It is nice to be in a bowl as opposed to staying home and to be able to continue practicing for next yr but I doubt the payout will cover team exp.?

Missy, my Mizzu wife, and I watched the game w/hope's of what was not to be. I like K-State cuse they have some purple in their color scheme. Small things mean a lot out here in Toto Land. Go Pirates...MMF

BL: The 15 extra practices (and the bonuses paid to the coaches) are the primary gains from a bowl game.
12/9/2013 8:40:01 PM

Great article...spot on.

I'll take 7,8, or 9 wins anytime!... and, yes, with most of those wins over NCSU, Dook, WF, and ECU....but, here's reality......are we ever going to be one of the big boys?( USC, OK, Tenn, Texas, Neb, Auburn, Ala, Mich, Ohio St, LSU, Fla. St., etc. )...no time soon, if ever! Hell, right now we have a hard time of trying to beat Dook and ECU! Thank goodness, we didn't have FSU and Clemson on our schedule this year. There would be NO BOWL!

I remember, at the end of the 1971 season, we were 9-2 and finished 18th in the final UPI poll. In 1972 we were 10-1 and finished 12th (AP) and 14th (UPI). Strength of schedule? Yea, most of those wins came within the ACC/much weaker non-ACC opponents.

Nowadays, 6 wins will get you into a bowl. In '71-'72 there were only 11 bowls.....now, there are 30+!

If I was offered free tickets to the Belk Bowl, I'd have to pass.....some other time, maybe,...BUT....New Year's Eve in Charlotte?.... Don't think so... Watching the game, that night, on TV, will be even less of a remote possibility, too. I plan on " ringing in the New Year " with friends, here at home. We might watch some of the game, maybe, on the tube. I'd rather send the Ram's Club an extra $ 200 for my support than spend those same dollars on tickets/gas/food, ( hotel? ), etc.

Does the team need me in the stands cheering them on? The " screaming of fans " is much overblown. If players are really " into the game ", they don't give a damn about the " loudness " in the stadium....the ones on the field have blocked it out...they're focusing on their assignment...Of course, for recruiting purposes, school recognition, another " win ", present/future athletic donations/proceeds, and for any of a thousand other reasons, I hope that the stadium is packed..the majority of them wearing Carolina blue...unfortunately/fortunately, I won't be one of them...nor, will I be missed. In my place will be some poor soul, recruited off the streets of Charlotte, with an offer of a discounted ticket from one of Charlotte's fine local, civic organizations ( Knights of Columbus ) or the BSA, to fill my seat....or, some rabid fan scalping a ticket for face value..or for more or for less. Filling the stadium will be the City of Charlotte's and the Belk Bowl Committee's responsibility...it's not even UNC's responsibility..unless, of course, UNC feels obligated and wants to go back " bowling " there again ( how many times, now? ). If we are so fortunate to attend again, it will mean that we missed another opportunity to go to a BCS Bowl...6, 7, 8 wins won't get you into a BCS Bowl, unless, somehow, you've won the ACC Championship...something we haven't done in 33 years.

Are we ever going to be a football powerhouse? Think AUBURN!.....National Champs in 2010...two years later, they fire Chizik ( alums got tired of Ala. winning those titles )...now, with more money spent on their program ( a good new offensive minded head coach/upgrade in facilities, etc. ) they're playing for the National Championship, AGAIN! Now, THAT'S REALITY!

At any rate...I'd be happy with an ACC Championship! I wear my 1971 Championship ring everyday. GO HEELS..and...HAPPY NEW YEAR'S!

BTW, Ellis Johnson is Auburn's defensive coordinator...his first and last year, as a Div.1 head coach, was at So. Miss. ( Fedora's old school ), where he was fired at mid-season. Prior to that he was Spurrior's defensive coordinator at So. Carolina.....go figure....

BL: LRP don't say too much.... but when he does.... he says a lot. :-)_
12/9/2013 8:06:09 PM

Billy Mays
Does the Hiroshimatic come with an industrial sized tub of Oxy Clean.

BL: IF... you mention the Promotional Code - BobLeeSays.
12/9/2013 5:34:58 PM

Cordite? It is not even in the dictionary----I looked it up. The Sara Lee of Coaches? Loved it!!! And I did not know about, Durant. Good for him. "Based on grandma's spaghetti sauce." Clever. 68 nation wide in 2011? You've got to be kidding me!!!!!

BL: Cordite is smokeless gunpowder - the smell after a bomb goes off.

Everyone has a sure-to-fail restaurant concept in them screaming to get out.

The 68 suspensions in December are just counting "power conferences".
12/9/2013 3:01:05 PM

Hiroshimatic -- Ain't that the latest, greatest do everything Do Da for the kitchen that sells for 19.95 and 200.00 for shipping (since you gotta get two of them just to get one, and you're just paying shippin' for the second one) and it breaks after the second time you use it (which is why they sent ya two in the first place)... How's that for run on sentence of the week Bobby?
As for the Championship game du jour (or is it dus jour, I can't remember the plural of that from my days of french class in high school) none of 'em topped the iron bowl. In any case Jimbo is next on the Malzahn and company radar. That one should be a whopper. Me thinks personally that the FSU chop is a touch better defensive weapon than than heartburn, I mean auburn.
BTW, Merry Christmas to you and yours Bobby.

BL: Yes, The Hiroshimatic comes with a supply of sham-wows and a Ab-Cruncher-amatic too. Is there a Nagasackimatic too ?

Auburn's run offense was "26 yards & a cloud of dust".... YIKES!
12/9/2013 2:37:33 PM

TM in Roswell
Are you going to The Tar Heel Bowl in Charlotte?

BL: Since I didn't "go to" the Logo Stomp @ The Carter which was two miles from my front door, I'll be passing on a three hour jaunt to Charlotte.... but will certainly watch on my Big Screen.

I "care" but I "don't go"..... except "amid the pines".
12/9/2013 2:01:42 PM

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