You might be wondering why we wrote about basketball and politics last week. The answer's really very simple: we're in a college football dead zone, the space between signing day and the start of spring games. Coaches are tight-lipped and the news flow has slowed to a trickle, and life is very hard for our colleagues who actually have to talk about college football without just making up Jim Harbaugh stories whenever they want. It's also hard for you, the college football fan wandering this desert. If you're going to survive this time, you'll need to follow these tips.
1. Use every part of the news we do get. Take, for instance, LSU hiring Dameyune Craig away from Auburn. You can run through the direct implications pretty quickly. Does this mean LSU will finally develop a quarterback? Is this the boost the Tigers need to recruit at an even higher level? Are things shakier for Gus Malzahn these days than we thought?
The real key is to go back for seconds or even thirds. Did LSU hire Craig because they're trying to build a pipeline to Jimbo Fisher so they can get him in 2017? Is Auburn intentionally sabotaging its own recruiting so they can tank and hire Tom Herman? Was Les Miles planning on hiring Antonin Scalia and had to resort to Craig once that plan fell through over the weekend? The answer to all of these is "maybe, you can't prove it's not the case!"
2. Start making strong statements about schedules. Remember when we looked at Georgia's 2015 schedule and thought "man, they have to play Alabama, Auburn, AND a Georgia Tech team that just won the Orange Bowl?" Oh, how young and beautiful we were. The Tigers and Yellow Jackets ended up being far lesser threats than predicted (I think Bama was decent, though I can't really recall), but that's no reason you shouldn't make bold proclamations about who teams are playing this year. West Virginia's playing Missouri? WEAK SCHEDULE PLAY A REAL SEC TEAM, UNLESS MIZZOU WINS THE EAST AGAIN IN WHICH CASE DANA HOLGORSEN HAS THIS THING FIXED. Pitt has Penn State and Oklahoma State out of conference? THAT'S HOW YOU CHALLENGE YOURSELF, UNLESS THEY BOTH GO 7-5 AND IT TURNS OUT THE ACC IS A FRAUD.
3. Speculate wildly. This is similar to point one, except it lacks the initial news item. The downside is you have to do all the work, because you're not riffing on something already reported. The upside? You have almost no limitations. Jump on a message board and say that your cousin is a dentist in Fort Worth and he heard from a guy who would know that Jerry Jones is going to fire Jason Garrett and hire Josh Rosen as the head coach for a year before making him the quarterback because the NFL's eligibility requirements don't prevent any of this. Make a new account on the same board and insist you saw Larry Fedora getting a tattoo of the Sooner Schooner while on vacation in Santorini. (Be sure you have a grainy photo that kind of sort of could be Fedora.)