COUCH POTATO: Former sports writer nightmare flashback – cell phone journalism yet haunts my dreams; UPDATES on Thanksgiving weekend games

I’m back covering Alabama. I’m at the university before a press conference with Nick Saban. I get a call from my editor. He tells me the state has declared bankruptcy and one of the editorial page writers has done a “humorous” piece on how we could solve this problem by having Oprah Winfrey buy the state of Alabama. As an “amusing” multimedia accompaniment, he wants me to get cell phone video of Saban saying “Roll Oprah,” as if to lead the rest of the population in a great cheer for our new overlord. It is the Friday before the Auburn game, I tell my editor. Saban won’t do it. The editor is mad at me. What’s wrong with me? Am I a fearful reporter? Am I not attuned to the new journalism? Perhaps somebody younger could do my job better than I could. Yeah, probably. Send him over. Bye.

The Egg Bowl Wrap-up; State ass beats Old Mississippi

Mississippi State’s ruthless obliteration was highlighted by a bench-clearing fist fight at the end of the third quarter that resulted in every single player on both teams being assessed a personal foul for being an asshole. It happened after Ole Miss scored a touchdown on a long pass after the clock had expired and the referees neglected to blow the whistle.

So anyhow, the players scuffle, an Ole Miss reserve QB comes off the bench to break up a tussle and then gets wailed by a Mississippi State DB and all hell broke loose. Guys were pulling off each others helmets and the refs waved their arms and the coaches ran on the field and half-heartedly tried to break up the melee. It was awesome.

Mississippi State won 1,000,000,000 to 3 or something. Good fight, though.

And as the weekend of mayhem continues:

No. 16 Washington at No. 7 Washington State 8:30 p.m. (Friday), FOX 

One of Washington’s band buses slid off the slick road and tumped over on the way to Pullman. Nobody was hurt, but 58 kids had to go sit in a grammar school gym on Thanksgiving while school officials got them a new bus or something. But hey, people from the nearby towns brought them turkey and dressing and shit and fed them, which was very nice. I still want Washington State to win, but I hope the Washington band does a good job playing whatever bands play these days, probably Beyonce shit or something.

I’m for Washington State because Mike Leach is fucking insane (in a good way) and his quarterback Gardner Minshew started his career at Troy and transferred because he couldn’t beat out a guy named Brandon Silvers, the two coolest names for quarterbacks on one team in America at that time. Now Gardner Minshew has a silly-ass mustache and is on the cusp of a Rose Bowl berth or horrific disappointment and everybody at Washington State has has glued on fake mustaches because that’s what you do when your school is in a fucking desert.

One of Washington’s band buses slid off the slick road and tumped over on the way to Pullman. Nobody was hurt, but 58 kids had to go sit in a grammar school gym on Thanksgiving while they got them a new bus or something. But hey, people from the nearby towns brought them turkey and dressing and shit and fed them, which was very nice. I still want Washington State to win, but I hope the Washington band does a good job playing whatever bands play these days, probably Beyonce shit or something.

No. 4 Michigan at No. 10 Ohio State Noon, FOX 

If Ohio State fucks up and wins this game they screw the Big Ten out of a playoff berth and cost the league millions. I actually think Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer may really be sick because he looked like death eating a cracker last week during his team’s 52-51 win over Maryland in the ugliest game ever played. He’s got some brain thing that makes his head hurt worse than mine does every time I think about him letting a wife beater stay on his staff for 12 years or so. But bless his heart anyway. Ohio State has bumbled around and managed to win all of them except a ruthless ass-beating at the hands of Purdue. Michigan is all the way up to No. 4 and will play probably Alabama in the first round of the playoffs if it wins this one and then slaughters Northwestern or whoever in the bullshit championship game which can accomplish nothing but screwing the Big Ten out of millions if Northwestern or whoever wins.

Georgia Tech at No. 5 Georgia Noon, SEC Network 

This one’s worth watching if you are an SEC fan and want to see if there’s a chance Georgia can upset Alabama in the SEC Championship Game next week because there’s a 13-1 chance you hate Alabama and hope anybody beats them.

No. 13 Florida at Florida State Noon, ABC 

As bad as Florida is, Florida State is worse. What a shitshow. USF and UCF got just enough good players away from them recruiting to make the state standard bearers suck against real competition while the lesser lights post fantastical records against teams that couldn’t beat Thompson High School in Alabama, where Tua Tagovaiola’s little brother is imposing his will upon all who come forth to challenge him.

Auburn at No. 1 Alabama 3:30 p.m., CBS 

Even if Auburn wins, which is highly unlikely since the War Damns are bad at scoring and Alabama is good at tackling ballcarriers and making quarterbacks pee their pants. Even if Alabama lost, it still goes to the SEC Championship Game and probably beats Georgia and goes to the playoffs to face Clemson in the first round. Yawn. Alabama looked like shit in the first half last week against Citadel and retired to the locker room tied 10-10, which means Alabama’s shitty November game was against a team that could not have won if it had deployed a small thermonuclear weapon in the second half. Also, Tua’s out of his knee brace and Jalen is back healthy, and the defense got lethal while they were both hurt. The only thing Auburn has to play for is to save Gus Malzahn’s job again like they did last year, and do they really want to do this? Get real. Despite all the public assurances from Auburn officials that Gus’ job is in no danger, we all know that’s bullshit and if Alabama wins 50-0 or something his ass is as gone as the Republican majority in the House of Representatives. And like all former members of the U.S. House of Representatives who got ass-beat in their last elections, Gus will depart public life bearing a suitcase of memories and the sort of wealth that can only be amassed by playing the game (not football, the real game) just well enough that The Man wants you to leave happy, lay low, stay out of the way, say all the right things and do whatever you’re told if ever called upon, a day that may never come.

No. 3 Notre Dame at USC 8 p.m., ABC 

Way back a long time ago when Notre Dame was really good, that Notre Dame went to Southern Cal and that Southern Cal beat them on the last play of the game or something, and the parallels are so similar commentators have reached back to that distant time to see if they could find something to write about this week. Could this happen again with this Notre Dame and this Southern Cal? Fuck, no. USC is awful, and Tua stayed at Alabama instead of transferring because he wasn’t playing much last year. I watched Notre Dame beat the snot out of Syracuse last week in New York, dressed like clowns in pinstriped uniforms to resemble those of the New York Yankees. You know, maybe if Notre Dame does get in the playoffs now and then, and if they come to their senses and join a shitty conference they can win a lot in football and get nice chunks of change from the NCAA basketball tournament (ACC, cough, cough, ACC), they’ll make enough money they don’t have to wear goofy-ass uniforms so they can sell replicas online to create a revenue stream.

 

 

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