Random--very, very random--notes from the weekend. Do not give us a notebook after three cups of coffee.
--Troy Smith plays quarterback with the calm and precision of a Zen archer on Saturday. He carries the water; he chops the wood. He contemplates the homunculus problem while noticing the slim wings of a pigeon circling the stadium lights. He doesn't throw the ball; it leaves him and goes to others, most notably Gonzales and Ginn but to eight receivers in total, all of whom take the space given and then smile the knowing smile of understanding.
Troy Smith's offseason workout: be the bow.
If we looked back and saw game film of him throwing blindfolded, well, we wouldn't be surprised. It's probably how he practiced in the offseason, throwing perfect spirals underneath a raging waterfall in the Himalaya in sub-zero temperatures. He's playing like Milarepa hit with the sandal of enlightenment--even when he made two bone-headed turnovers, they looked like excuses to flaunt his skills.
--The conversation on the headset between Troy Smith and coaches:
Coach: Troy, what is a mistake?
Troy: A man with no head looking for a hat.
Coach, covering headset mike and talking with staff: He's fine.
--Retro note: spread sets, at-will passing, long, inexplicable runs up the middle...the Northwestern offense strikes Michigan squarely between the eyes yet again. Stewart Mandel, dorks out and plays Northwestern/Michigan on the XBox one last time, switching controllers and forcing Anthony Thomas to lateral in order to simulate the fatal fumble one last time.
--Chuck Amato loses to John Bunting: crabs in a bucket.
You've been thinking about going to law school too?
--It's been a whole season, and despite being bombarded with advertising for the combined total of 154 hours straight, we're no closer to purchasing a Yamaha ATV.
So much for the effectiveness of the redneck Ludovico treatment, since we still hate Big and Rich like we hate Satan and cheese and haven't even thought of going to Krystal, since the people on the commercials are uniformly dogass ugly.*
*Little known fact: we hate cheese, with the exception of mozzarella. Sister Daggers Swindle used to chase us around the house with slices of it in our early youth. We blame society.
--Chris Nickson could be very, very good in the future for Vanderbilt, but Vandy's innovative 4 lineman sets on Saturday doomed any chance he had at success. He spent most of the day laying on his back and pondering the deep, cold blue of the Tennessee sky. Despite all the quality reflection time Tennessee's defensive line gave Nickson in the game, Vandy's made its way out of geniunely awful and into mediocre/slightly bad territory not just for a brief blip, but for two years running now. Say it with us, Commodores: we're a don't buy! Hooray!
This man has coached Vandy into a "don't buy." Bravo.
--When tragedy crosses into farce and four-wheels into back into the territory of joy, there's no end to the rephrasing, really. Illinois correspondents have to wake up beaming like sunflowers each morning they cover this team; like the California school of American cooking, the ingredients just speak for themselves, though like French cuisine, they do have a certain fine and distinctive reek to them.
The quote about the Northwestern 27-16 defeat of the Illini, courtesy of the AP:
Those plays summed up Illinois' afternoon, one filled with drops, penalties and mistakes that bordered on comical. Like when Alan Ball ran into Halsey, who was signaling for a fair catch on a punt later in the fourth.
--Oh, Florida played. A 1-AA team, Western Carolina. Yes, we know. It's shameful. But like watching a fat woman beat up a skinny, addled crackhead, it had its own amusement. (Ah, the traditions at the Swindle Thanksgiving--we can't wait!) Tebow looked great, though, which shows that he hasn't forgotten how to play high school football.
--We were so ready to declare today Lemsday, since the Orgeron et al. almost toppled LSU and the suddenly indomitable Jamarcus Russell, who did everything possible to hand the win to Ole Miss, including missing a game-winning PAT at the gun. Sadly, they turned it over on the first possession of OT, leaving LSU with an easy figgie to win and thus ruin the Orgeron's massive, AC/DC-themed plot to burn a trail to Baton Rouge in celebration and steal half their recruiting class at axepoint. (Guns only anger the Orgeron.) For fear of his retaliation, we'll simply congratulate the Orgeron on his fine win and hope everyone else winks and catches on. By the way, has anyone else seen the city of Oxford? The whole city? It was just here...
The Orgeron was here. For god's sake, just let him win next time.