Friday, September 4, 2009

It's Christmas Eve, Gopher Fans!!!

It sure feels that way, doesn't it? I can barely put into words how excited I am for the Gophs and Syracuse tomorrow morning at 11am. So glad it's an early game so I don't have to wait all stinkin' day for it. After watching two ugly games yesterday, I'm revising my Gopher prediction to something around 27-17 Minnesota. The defenses definitely have the advantage in the first contest, as evidenced by last night's 7-3 snoozer win by South Carolina (although NC State had chances but just couldn't capitalize), and then nightcap 19-8 win of Boise over Oregon. Couldn't decide which was uglier in that game- Oregon's unis or their offense. I suppose the answer is both. For some reason I thought their QB Massoli could throw, but apparently not. I HATE the spread offense when it's primarily a run offense, because all the movement is East and West. Boise just sent everybody to the line and the Ducks had nowhere to go. They started with what, like eight straight 3-and-outs? Boise is either really good (a distinct possibility), or Oregon is nowhere near a top 25 team this year. Again, both are probably true.

So we'll see what the Gopher offense can get going tomorrow. I thought we'd rack up some points, but again, if two teams like the Broncos and Ducks that were supposed to be able to light up scoreboards like Christmas trees only COMBINED for 27 points, I'll temper expectations for Minnesota and Syracuse.

Around the Big Ten, there shouldn't be any real big surprises. Indiana barely survived last night against Eastern Kentucky, which could be their only win all year. Illinois should beat Mizzou, Purdue should beat Akron or Toledo or whichever MAC school they're playing, and I think Michigan has just enough to hold off Western Michigan, although if Michigan loses, does RichRod even survive the post-game press conference or does he get chased out of Ann Arbor by fans with torches and pitchforks? Or for Michigan fans, burning cheese and broken wine glasses? The rest of the Big Ten fare should be blowouts.

If I can talk my wife into letting me watch a second game tomorrow (and as a newlywed, I'm open to suggestions from any of you veteran married guys out there on how to convince my wife to let me watch more college football on Saturdays), I want to see Oklahoma State vs. Georgia more than the Bama/VT games. Except when Vick was there, I've never thought the Hokies play very entertaining football. Effective for sure (if VT wins that game, they're a darkhorse for the BCS title game coming out of the mediocre ACC), but not especially entertaining. Bama too has to replace some key cogs on their offensive line, their starting QB AND their starting tailback from a year ago, so expect a 14-10 type defensive slugfest where we could see the punters as much as the quarterbacks. The Cowpokes and Bulldogs on the other hand should be a shootout, and I'm very interested to see OSU's three headed monster of QB Zac Robinson, WR Dez Bryant, and RB Kendrell Hunter.

All in all, so happy for a long weekend AND the return of college football. Let's hope we've got a lot of good things to talk about from the Gopher game when we're back on Tuesday. Enjoy the game everybody, and GO GOPHERS!!!!

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