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Random Thoughts: SEC Takes An Early Hit

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College football news: all the scores, injuries, gaffes, upsets, derps, and snark that you can handle.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 23 Union Home Mortgage Gasparilla Bowl - UCF v Florida
Gator fall down, go boom.
Photo by Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

After a week of opening acts, the SEC got into bowl action with two East teams playing games against non-Power 5 teams. It did not end well.

Center Florida 29 Florida 17 - Emory Jones was god-frickin-awful (14-36, 171 YDS), missing at least three wide open touchdown passes. Anthony Richardson was unavailable due to recent surgery. The Gators secondary played pretty well. It was the defensive front that got pushed around a good bit and allowed 288 rushing yards led by Isaiah Bowser (35 RUSH, 155 YDS, 2 TD). If you needed any proof of the lack of depth compiled by Dan Mullen in Gainesville, this game was Exhibit A.

The UF loss, puts the mighty SEC in a 0-2 hole to begin the bowl season.

Army 24 Missouri 22 - Despite ending the first half with a nine point advantage, the Tigers made a few tactical errors of “poking the bear”. First was Mizzou kicker Harrison Mevis disrespecting his military opponent with a “salute” gesture (see below) after a field goal made it 16-7 with 3 seconds to go in the half. On the ensuing kickoff, the Tigers delivered a squib kick that almost looked like an onside attempt. Although, Mizz was probably just trying to kill off the last few ticks, the back-to-back plays fired Army up. In the second half, the Black Knights produced touchdown scoring drives on their first two possessions to take a 21-16 lead. Late in the game, the MU put together an uptempo drive of 83 yards in a minute and a half to retake the lead 22-21. With 1:11 to play, Army answered by moving 51 yards and connected on a 41-yard field goal as time expired.

Most expected the Tigers’ Swiss cheese rushing defense to give up 1000 rushing yards to the Cadets’ triple option. But Army tallied only 211 and 306 total yards. With QB Connor Bazelak and All-SEC RB Tyler Badie staying home, Mizzou still had 195 yards on the ground and 433 overall. The real issue for the Tigers was finishing drives. The inexperience of freshman QB Brady Cook doomed the Tigers.

OTHER STUFF

Georgia State 51 Ball State 20 - A scoop-and-score, a pick-six, and 259 rushing yards propelled the Panthers to the rout victory in Montgomery, AL.

By winning seven of their last eight, GSU earned their first 8-win season of the young program’s history. The five losses this season were understandable: @UNC, @Auburn (almost pulled the upset), Army’s triple option, #23 La-Laffy, and Appy State. Georgia Tech is in grave danger of becoming the third best football team in the Peach State.

Miami (OH) 27 North Texas 14 - Insert bland recap here.

Wyoming 52 Kent State 38 - The Cowboys had over 300 yards of both passing and rushing for the win on the Smurf’s blue field in Boise.

Western Michigan 52 Nevada 24 - ╭∩╮(Ο_Ο)╭∩╮ (sorry, not sorry)

FAT GUY TOUCHDOWN

CHIPPY

It was like this the whole game.

TROLL OF THE WEEK

They are going to enjoy this one for a good long while.

TROLL BACKFIRE

Mizzou’s obese kicker Harrison Mevis made a “salute” gesture after making a kick in the first half that was not received well. Fittingly, it was an Army field goal that won the game.

BODY SLAM OF THE WEEK

Sir. There has been a murder.

UGLIEST UNIFORMS FIELD

MY EYES! MY EYES!

WACKIEST MASCOT

Some call me... Tim Spuddy Buddy?

WANT AD OF THE WEEK

O, the trials of the Desperate.

FOLLOW-UP OF THE WEEK

(✖╭╮✖)

KID BROTHER GETS A CHRISTMAS PRESENT

  • Taulia Tagovailoa will have a new target next year in former Florida wide receiver Jacob Copeland. The rising senior was a high 4-star coming out of high school. He has been dependable for the Gators but has yet to live up to his lofty recruiting rankings.

STATS OF THE WEEK

Craig Bohl gets a Potato Bowl shower.

  • Wyoming head man Craig Bohl has won three straight bowl games for the Cowboys. Oddly enough, they occurred in odd years (2017, 2019, 2021). It seems like only yesterday he was killing everyone in his FCS path at North Dakota State. Yet, he just completed his eighth season in Laramie. Only 12 FBS coaches have been at their current schools for a longer span.
  • One more bowl win for Gus Malzahn at UCF and he will equal his total while at Auburn.
  • Wyoming and Kent State combined for 1,194 yards of offense in the Tater Bowl.

NAME OF THE WEEK

  • Florida DL Princely Umanmielen.

RECRUIT NAME OF THE WEEK

  • Ole Miss OT commit Falentha Carswell. Spot. On.

ADOPT-A-TEAM

Y’all remember Tyrell?

  • UT-Martin (10-3)
  • UTSA (12-2) - San Diego State (12-2) was just too much for the Roadrunners, outmuscling them 38-24.
  • UCLA (8-4) - The Bruins get a tough draw in NC State (-2) on Dec 28. Fortunately for UCLA, it is a home advantage playing in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego.

COUSINS

  • Troy (5-7)
  • South Alabama (5-7)

THAT ANNOYING GUY WHO RE-GIFTS USED GIFTS

  • UAB (9-4)

SALUTE TO OUR TROOPS

Miami Ohio v Army
Hooah!
Photo by Edward Diller/Getty Images
  • Army (9-4) - By beating Mizzou, the Black Knights snapped a seven-game losing streak to Power 5 teams going back to 2017.
  • Navy (3-8)
  • Air Force (9-3) - The Falcons are set to face Louisville (-1) in the 2021 First Responder Bowl, Dec. 28.
boxers

ELIMINATED FROM PLAYOFF CONTENTION

Premature elimination: None.

Definite elimination: Duke, Georgia Tech, Louisville, FSU, NC State, Syracuse, Clemson, UNC, Virginia, Pitt, Boston College, Miami, Virginia Tech, Kansas, Iowa State, Texas Tech, Kansas State, TCU, West Virginia, Texas Tech, Texas, Baylor, Nebraska, Illinois, Indiana, Northwestern, Rutgers, Minnie, Wisky, Purdue, Maryland, Iowa, Penn State, Cal, Oregon State, Arizona, Arizona State, Stanford, Colorado, Southern Cal, Utah, UCLA, Washington State, Washington, Mizzou, Vandy, Tennessee, South Carolina, Missy State, LSU, Texas A&M, Arky, Kentucky, Auburn, Florida, BYU, Ole Miss, Michigan State, Wake Forest, Oregon, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ohio State, Notre Dame

Endangered: Michigan, Alabama, Cincy, UGA.

Not endangered: None.

RANK ‘EM IF YOU GOT ‘EM

Most Popular Male Baby Names Of 2000

  1. Jacob
  2. Michael
  3. Matthew
  4. Joshua
  5. Christopher
  6. Nicholas
  7. Andrew
  8. Joseph
  9. Daniel
  10. Tyler
  11. William
  12. Brandon
  13. Ryan
  14. John
  15. Zachary
  16. David
  17. Anthony
  18. James
  19. Justin
  20. Alexander
  21. CB

LET’S GO BOWLING!

CONFERENCE WINS LOSSES FORFEIT BOWL TEAMS
SEC 0 2 1 13
ACC 0 0 2 10
B1G 0 0 0 9
MWC 4 1 2 8
MAC 2 5 0 8
C-USA 3 5 0 8
B12 0 0 0 7
AAC 2 0 0 7
PAC 0 1 0 6
SBC 3 1 0 4

SEC BOWL TIE-INS (with match-ups)

L -Armed Forces: Army 24 Mizz 22
L - Gasparilla: UCF 29 Fla 17
Dec 28 Birmingham: ACC/SEC vs. Pool (Hou-Aub)
Dec 28 Liberty: Big 12 vs. SEC (TxTech-MissSt)
Dec 30 Music City: Big Ten vs. SEC (Purdue-Tenn)
Dec 30 Duke’s Mayo: ACC vs. Big Ten* (UNC-SCar)
Dec 30 Peach: at-large vs. at-large (Sparty-Pitt)
F - Dec 31 Gator: Big Ten vs. SEC (Wake-TxA&M)
Dec 31 Cotton: CFP Semifinal (ALABAMA vs Cincy)
Dec 31 Orange: CFP Semifinal (Michigan vs Georgia)
Jan 1 Sugar: SEC vs. Big 12 (Ole Miss vs Baylor)
Jan 1 Rose: Big Ten vs. Pac-12 (anOSU-Utah)
Jan 1 Fiesta: at-large vs. at-large (OkieSt-ND)
Jan 1 Citrus: Big Ten vs. SEC (Iowa-UK)
Jan 1 Outback: Big Ten vs. SEC (PSU-Ark)
Jan 4 Texas: Big 12 vs. SEC (LSU-K-State)

LET’S GO BLOWING

  • We have entered the realm of bowl absurdity. The NCAA made the silly move of adding the Hawaii Bowl at the last minute to accommodate a 6-6 team and a 6-7 team who would have been left out of a participation trophy otherwise. However Hawaii (the 6-7 team) ended up dropping out of the game because of Captain Trips. Meanwhile, Texas A&M ducked out of the Gator Bowl against Wake Forest. Rutgers (5-7) became the replacement team against the Demon Deacons leaving Memphis (the 6-6 team scheduled to play Hawaii) with nobody to play. That’s some #TooManyBowls karma there.
  • Last week, Virginia dropped out of the Fenway Bowl against SMU because of you-know-what. Boston College is also backing out of the Military Bowl against East Carolina after reportedly having over 40 players unavailable to play. Why they cannot find a way to have SMU play ECU somewhere is beyond me.
  • BREAKING: Miami-FL peaced out of the Sun Bowl while Boise will not play in the Arizona Bowl. Washington State was already in El Paso and Central Michigan was already in Tucson. Thus, they will make lemonade out of lemons and play each other in the Sun Bowl. There will be no Arizona Bowl. Now, that wasn’t so hard. Was it?
  • Announced attendance for the Frisco (TX) Bowl between Miami (OH) and North Texas was 11,721. There are more people than that waiting to get into Gallette’s on a Saturday night.
  • Wyoming and Kent State’s get-together in the Tater Bowl had an announced 10,217 - about 400 less than Alabama had at the basketball game with Houston.
  • The Camelia Bowl (GSU-Ball St) in lovely downtown Montgomery, Alabama did not release an attendance total.

Krazy Kristi’s “SHUT UP!” of the Week goes to Texas A&M. Let’s not mince words. The Aggies straight up used Captain Trips has an excuse to back out of an ass-kicking by Wake Forest. Despite starting all season, quarterback Stephen Garcia Jake Calzada decided to transfer before the Gator Bowl. Even with him behind center, TAMU’s chances of victory did not look good. Running back Isaiah Spiller is entering the NFL Draft and doesn’t want to play. The offensive plan was going to basically be walk-on freshman QB Blake Bost handing off to Devon Achane 50 times. This whole episode is quite ironic, as Bunkie Perkins put it: for a program whose “entire ethos surrounds someone stepping in to play for a depleted team.” The 12th Man history be damned.

A second “SHUT UP!” has to go to Garcia Calzada himself. What program in their right mind would want a quitter like him? He screwed over so many people.

ATTENTION! THIS IS A FAKE ACCOUNT

There is no online history of this guy anywhere. His description says “@knoxnews” but legitimate beat writers in Knoxville have already said they have never heard of him. This bozo went as far as creating a second fake Twitter account “Jim Howington” to confirm his deceptive Tweets. Whoever this fraud is had to change the profile photo on that second one because somebody discovered the real identity of the picture.

Don’t be suckered in by this jerk trying to make you look like a fool.

As to Kayshon Boutte, he has never entered his name into the transfer portal and no major reporter has conveyed even a possibility of it. It doesn’t mean it won’t happen at some point. It just means this attention whore is taking rumors and gambling that they will happen.

HEISMAN HYPE

2023?

SICK

  • Florida WR Justin Shorter had to be carted off the field after an awkward collision with a UCF DB with 2:28 left and UF down 29-17. The redshirt junior has been released from the hospital and should be okay. Recruitniks might remember this name. In 2018, Shorter was the #8 ranked player as a recruit. He spent two season at Penn State before transferring to Florida in 2020. He has 975 yards and six TDs in those four seasons.

DRAMARAMA

  • As much as we deride Florida QB Emory Jones, he gets a modicum of respect playing in the Gasparilla Bowl with his brothers despite already being in the TP. WR Jacob Copeland also played for the Gators and caught two balls for 35 yards, but announced his move to Maryland a few days later.
  • Ex-Ohio State QB Jack Miller is heading to Florida. This dude was third team and ticketed for operating a vehicle while impaired during the Buckeyes’ season.
  • Missouri’s Connor Bazelak is another QB who left his teammates high and dry in a bowl. It’s mind-blowing how many starting quarterbacks are looking for greener pastures that may not exist. Bazelak struggled this year (16 TD, 11 INT) and felt the wrath of disappointed fans, but was good enough to retain the job as next year’s starter for UM. I doubt he gets that chance now. #LifeChoices
  • Here’s another: Southern Cal QB Kedon Slovis/Sedon Klovis/Klevon Lotus is heading to Pitt. I suppose he hopes some of Kenny Pickett’s magic rubs off on him.
  • Wisconsin redshirt freshman running back Jalen Berger got kicked off the team in October but Michigan State welcomed him into their family. You know how bad a guy has to behave to get dismissed from a team in 2021? A few sources said the former 4-star skipped out on meetings and workouts but it likely goes beyond that. Good luck with all that, Mel.
  • It’s been almost a month and former 5-star TCU RB Zach Evans is still looking for a dance partner.
  • Former Oregon DL Jayson Jones (Calera, AL) is transferring to Auburn. You may recall, Jones committed to Alabama a few years ago but there was speculation that he jumped the gun on that announcement. He would eventually “flip” to Oregon but it was similar to the scenario around Robert Woodyard from this last recruiting signing day. Looking at the RBR archives, there were five 2020 recruits who committed to Alabama by July of 2018 - which is WAY too early. They were Jones, WR Dazalin Worsham, LB Jackson Bratton, DB Javier Morton, and QB Carson Beck. Only Bratton ended up signing and now he is in the TP.

KOACHES KORNER

  • Southern Cal is reportedly giving Lincoln Riley approximately $110 million for ten years (“reportedly” since the university is private and does not fall under the Freedom of Information Act).
  • LSU will shell out $95 million over a 10-year deal for 60-year old Brian Kelly. lol
  • Sparty is paying Mel Tucker an identical salary as Kelly. They share the honor of third-highest paid college football coaches. Tucker has a career coaching record of 17-14. SEVENTEEN WINS, y’all.
  • Mario Cristobal is reportedly set to earn $8 million at Miami next season.
  • Utah State and Blake Anderson agree to a two-year extension, thru the 2027 season. Anderson is a name to watch in the future.
  • Florida gave athletic director Scott Stricklin with three-year contract extension. For what reason I have no idea. He is the one who hired Dan Mullen and is now saddled with his buyout.
  • Do you feel sorry for Urban Meyer yet? Good. Me neither.
  • Fat F*** Phil Fulmer went to the mall to sit on Santa Claus’s lap. When FFPF stood up, Santa was gone. Deep crevasse explorers from Antarctica have been called in after efforts of local coal miners failed.
Black and White TV

TEEVEE

Last Saturday’s UAB-BYU Independence Bowl ranks as the highest rated and most-watched bowl thus far with a 1.9 rating and 3.22 million viewers on ABC. It barely edged out ESPN’s Florida-UCF game that drew 3.201 million viewers. ABC typically gets more viewers because not everyone has cable.

The third most viewed bowl was Wednesday’s Army-Missouri Armed Forces Bowl on ESPN, which averaged 2.57 million viewers.

THIS WEEK

Tuesday, December 28

BIRMINGHAM BOWL
Houston vs Auburn (-2; O/U 51) 11am/noon ESPN (Birmingham, AL)

FIRST RESPONDER BOWL
Air Force vs Louisville (-1; O/U 54.5) 2:15/3:15 ESPN (Dallas, TX)

LIBERTY BOWL
Mississippi State (-10; O/U 58.5) vs Texas Tech 5:45/6:45 ESPN (Memphis, TN)

HOLIDAY BOWL
UCLA vs NC State (-2; O/U 60) 7pm/8pm FOX (San Diego, CA)

PHOENIX BOWL
West Virginia vs Minnesota (-5; O/U 45) 9:15/10:15 PM ESPN (Phoenix, AZ)

Wednesday, December 29

PINSTRIPE BOWL
Maryland (-3.5; O/U 54.5) vs Virginia Tech 1:15/2:15 ESPN (Yankee Stadium, Bronx, NY)

CHEEZ-IT BOWL
Clemson (-1.5; O/U 44) vs Iowa State 4:45/5:45 ESPN (Orlando, FL)

ALAMO BOWL
Oregon vs Oklahoma (-7; O/U 60) 8:15/9:15 ESPN (San Antonio, TX)

Thursday, December 30

DUKE’S MAYO BOWL
North Carolina (-9; O/U 58) vs South Carolina 10:30am/11:30am ESPN (Charlotte, NC)

MUSIC CITY BOWL
Tennessee (-5.5; O/U 63.5) vs Purdue 2pm/3pm ESPN (Nashville, TN)

CHICK-FIL-A PEACH BOWL
Pitt vs Michigan State (-2.5; O/U 56.5) 6pm/7pm ESPN (Atlanta, GA)

LAS VEGAS BOWL
Wisconsin (-6; O/U 42) vs Arizona State 9:30/10:30 ESPN (Las Vegas, NV)

Friday, December 31

GATOR BOWL
Wake Forest (-14.5; O/U 62.5) vs Rutgers 10am/11am ESPN (Jacksonville, FL)

SUN BOWL
Washington State vs Central Michigan (n/a as of post) 11am/noon CBS (El Paso, TX)

* CFP SEMIFINAL, COTTON BOWL
#4 Cincinnati vs #1 Alabama (-13.5; O/U 58) 2:30/3:30 ESPN (Arlington, TX)

* CFP SEMIFINAL, ORANGE BOWL
#3 Georgia (-7.5; O/U 45) vs #2 Michigan 6:30/7:30 ESPN (Miami, FL)

Saturday, January 1

OUTBACK BOWL
Penn State vs Arkansas (-1; O/U 47.5) 11am/noon ESPN (Tampa, FL)

FIESTA BOWL
Oklahoma State vs Notre Dame (-2.5; O/U 45.5) Noon/1pm ESPN (Glendale, AZ)

CITRUS BOWL
Iowa vs Kentucky (-3; O/U 44) Noon/1pm ABC (Orlando, FL)

ROSE BOWL
Utah vs Ohio State (-4; O/U 64) 4pm/5pm ESPN (Pasadena, CA)

SUGAR BOWL
Baylor vs Ole Miss (-1; O/U 55.5) 7:45/8:45 ESPN (New Orleans)

Spreads and Over/Unders are according to DraftKings sportsbook.

Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.

SABAN VS THE WORLD

Career Bowl Wins

Rk Coach W School
1 Joe Paterno 24 Penn State
2 Bobby Bowden 22 Florida State, West Virginia
3 Nick Saban* 17 Alabama, LSU, Michigan State, Toledo
4 Bear Bryant 15 Alabama, Kentucky, Maryland, Texas A&M
5 Mack Brown* 14 North Carolina, Texas, Tulane
T-6 Lou Holtz 12 Arkansas, Minnesota, North Carolina State, Notre Dame, South Carolina, William & Mary
T-6 Urban Meyer 12 Bowling Green State, Florida, Ohio State, Utah
T-6 Tom Osborne 12 Nebraska
T-9 Frank Beamer 11 Virginia Tech
T-9 Gary Patterson 11 Texas Christian
T-9 Steve Spurrier 11 Duke, Florida, South Carolina
T-9 Kyle Whittingham* 11 Utah

*Active coach with a 2021 bowl game still to play.

  • Nick Saban is climbing up another record ladder. It is not inconceivable to think the career bowl win record is attainable. For the record, the NCAA counts two playoff games in the same postseason as two bowls.
  • Saban lost the first three bowl games of his coaching career, all at Michigan State. He is 17-7 since then and 14-5 since joining the Crimson Tide.

#ALABAMA

  • LSU transfer DB Eli Ricks joined the team last week and was participating in practice. He was seen wearing #7. Whether intentional or not, it is some damn good trolling at the expense of his former team. The Tigers have a history that most of us did not know about until this season surrounding players wearing the digit on their jerseys.
  • ICYMI: Ricks, all-purpose back Jahmyr Gibbs, and quarterback Ty Simpson are not eligible to play for Alabama in this season’s playoffs.
  • During Monday’s Media Day, Alabama DC Pete Golding said cornerback Jalyn Armour-Davis (hip) has practiced all week and looks like he is doing well. He is expected to play on Friday.
  • Wide receiver/kick returner JoJo Earle was seen in full pads during the Monday practice. His playing status is unknown.
  • Brian Robinson’s 14 rushing touchdowns is tied with Mizzou’s Tyler Badie for the most in the SEC this season.
  • Jameson Williams has the most receiving touchdowns in the SEC with 15. Two others have 11 each.

Single Season Sacks

Rank Player Sack Year School
1 Elvis Dumervil 20 2005 Louisville
2 Hau'oli Kikaha 19 2014 Washington
3 Nate Orchard 18.5 2014 Utah
4 Jaylon Ferguson 17.5 2018 Louisiana Tech
5 Josh Allen 17 2018 Kentucky
Von Miller 17 2009 Texas A&M
Ameer Ismail 17 2006 Western Michigan
8 Chase Young 16.5 2019 Ohio State
Harold Landry 16.5 2016 Boston College
10 Demarcus Walker 16 2016 Florida State
Marcus Smith 16 2013 Louisville
Whitney Mercilus 16 2011 Illinois
Greg Middleton 16 2007 Indiana
Dan Bazuin 16 2005 Central Michigan
15 Will Anderson Jr. 15.5 2021 Alabama
Gregory Rousseau 15.5 2019 Miami (FL)
Carl Nassib 15.5 2015 Penn State
Da'Quan Bowers 15.5 2010 Clemson

Just one half sack in the next game puts Will Anderson in the top 10 of the single season sack leaders.

Single Season TFL

Rank Player TFL Year School
1 George Selvie 32 2007 South Florida
2 Scooby Wright 31 2014 Arizona
3 Sutton Smith 30 2017 Northern Illinois
Sammy Brown 30 2011 Houston
5 Will Anderson Jr. 29 2021 Alabama
6 Aaron Donald 29 2013 Pitt
Shawn Crable 29 2007 Michigan
8 Wallace Gilberry 27 2007 Alabama

The Tackle For Loss (TFL) stats only became official in 2005. Who knows how many Cornelius Bennett or the late great Derrick Thomas had? Regardless, Anderson could very well own this one outright.

COTTON BOWL/CFP SEMI-FINAL: Saturday, December 31, 2021

Alabama Crimson Tide (12-1) vs Cincinnati Bearcats (13-0)

Bryant-Denny West, Arlington, TX ~ 2:30/3:30 ESPN

  • Announcers: Sean McDonough and Todd Blackledge with Molly McGrath and Laura Rutledge on the sidelines.
  • Eli Gold on Alabama Radio.
  • Famous Cincy graduate William Howard Taft is best know for getting stuck in a bath tub.
  • The Crimson Tide have played the Bearcats before - five times in fact: 1908, 1982, 1984, 1985, and 1990. Of course the Tide is 5-0.
  • According to DraftKings sportsbook, the line on this game is Bama -13½. Over/Under is 58. The oddsmakers have also already posted spreads for possible championship games. If Bama were to play UGA, the Tide would be a two point underdog. Should they play Michigan, Saban’s crew would be a six point favorite.

Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.

Poll

SEC team most likely to lose:

This poll is closed

  • 41%
    Auburn vs Houston
    (123 votes)
  • 1%
    Mississippi State vs Texas Tech
    (5 votes)
  • 52%
    South Carolina vs North Carolina
    (155 votes)
  • 4%
    Tennessee vs Purdue
    (13 votes)
296 votes total Vote Now