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Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Sports: The Week That Will Be (8/28) 

How things can change in a year.

The LFZ tailgate went from one to two to one again...Wheeler may or may not be buried in the endzone of DKR....Our friend Simon is $5 richer...and Mack Brown went from losing to Oklahoma to getting his whipped up and down the field by OU...and then getting his ass whipped up and down the state of Texas in recruiting.

But it's a brand new season, and everyone from Tallahassee to Southern California to Ann Arbor to Austin have aspirations of a national title (well, maybe not Baylor), but as we all know, only 3 teams at the end of the year can bitch that they are national champions in college football. And only 32 teams end their season on a winning note.

So sit back, take your pants off, grab a bottle of whiskey and enjoy....Matt's Preview of the College Football season.

Perhaps we should begin in the ACC, where powerhouse programs Miami and Virginia Tech join the fray. So now when a FSU kicker misses a field goal, he will cost his team not only a chance at the national title, but also a chance at the conference title, therefore putting FSU in danger of getting no metal for the warchest.

Miami should more than hold their own in the conference despite the impending annual Frank Gore knee injury (resident TWTWB handicapper Roxy Roxborough has the Louisville game on October 14th at 4-1 odds at the LM Hotel and Casino) and the impending suckitude of Brock Berlin.

Virginia Tech will have a little more trouble, but at least Marcus Vick can follow R Kelly around the country on his upcoming tour due to his season long suspension.

In the Big Ten, optimism is high that the conference won't continue to be the most overrated conference in all of college football. The deal that Ohio State signed with the devil apparently expired after one year, although Jim Tressel continues to wear the sweater vest that was part of the original deal.

Michigan has their eyes set on a national title despite the loss of John Navarre (good or bad?) and Chris Perry. Penn State has their eyes set on Joe Paterno not dying on the sidelines.
But cheer up Illinois, Mack Brown is apparently on his way.

In the Big East, all eyes are on the calendar as basketball season starts in mid-November.

The SEC is loaded with excitement as not only is the conference as loaded as ever, but the 2005 models of automobiles are coming out, much to the delight of starting quarterbacks and potential recruits.

At Florida, Ron Zook continues to watch game film despite Steve Spurrier taking measurements of his office. Georgia hopes that Mark Richt isn't the big southern dummy version of Mack Brown. Phil Fulmer takes to wearing Groucho Marx masks on the sidelines to avoid supoenas.

The Pac-10 promises to be as exciting as always, as Mike Stoops brings his over-intensity west to Arizona. Because we all know while John Mackovic is a wine-sipping hard ass, Stoops prefers sleepovers and lemonade.

USC appears to be the Misti May of the conference as everyone will be behind it and looking at it's ass, but the conference is always unpredictable as evidenced last year by Cal's defeat of the Trojans. Perfect fodder for the drunk ass fans in other time zones as they look upon the late night games out west.

Which brings us to the Big 12...

Oklahoma tries to deal with the loss of defensive tackle Tommie Harris. His 3 big plays will be looked upon with much appreciation from the crimson and cream faithful. But the OU program will go on, and they appear to be the front-runners for the conference crown as Jason White returns for his 8th year.

Missouri appears to be the front runner in the North, as Nebraska was last seen trying to coach it's quarterbacks the forward pass, Kansas State again goes against the odds and tries to win with a white quarterback in Manhattan, and Colorado players learn the difference between "yes" and "no".

And of course in Austin, Mack Brown is hoping that it was all Bevo 13's fault.

On to the games, er game....

USC (-17.5) @ Virginia Tech (Landover, MD):

I've gone back and forth on this game.

My first impression was that no way USC covers that against Tech, a squad that is known for it's running game, defense and special teams. Teams like that don't lose that big in basically a home game.

Add that to the fact that the defense is usually ahead of the offense at this point of the season, and Virginia Tech was my pick.


Virginia Tech lost Kevin Jones, Nathaniel Adibi and DeAngelo Hall off of an already disappointing team. Nobody appears to be ready to step into Jones' shoes in the backfield, and the defense gets no pressure on the QB (their leader only had 6.5 sacks last season). It's going to take a perfect game by Bryan Randall throwing to no name receivers, because USC just happens to return the nation's best rush defense.

USC, meanwhile, loses Hershel Dennis and Mike Williams for various reasons, but has the athletes to take their place with little to no dropoff. VT would kill to have Reggie Bush or LenDale White on their team, and USC has both.

Oh yeah, they also have a quarterback in Matt Leinart who if he doesn't win the Heisman Trophy will be the biggest upset since Bayside beat Valley on homecoming.

I don't see this one being much of a game at all.

USC 41 Virginia Tech 14

For entertainment purposes only. Your money would be best served planning a bus ride to Stillwater, OK.


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