"Hi, I'm Bret Bielema, and did you know that there are STILL cable networks that are actually CARRYING the Fat 10 Network...?"
You probably didn't notice because the game kicked off late on the East coast, and because Penn State-Notre Dame was on, as was LSU-Virginia Tech and South Florida and Auburn, but Fatconsin barely escaped against a school better known for NCAA scandals than college football. Not only did they escape, but they needed a touchdown with 1:53 to play in order to pull it off. And yet, somehow, they only moved down TWO SPOTS in the latest coaches and AP polls, further proving (a) Midwest sports media are Fat 10 apologists and (b) coaches don't know shit.
Well, you may have escaped their scorn, but you won't escape ours. Here's a top 10 ranking you deserve, Fatconsin.
We here at Panther Rants love the University of Hawaii football program. Many a late night they have kept us entertained with live football that kicks off at midnight. But people really have to start to ask if head coach June Jones is trying to win football games or prove that his offensive system can win a Heisman trophy. Colt Brennan passed SIXTY-ONE times for 543 yards in an overtime win against Louisiana Tech. Just one issue: running back Leon Wright-Jackson rushed for 53 yards on just SIX carries. Yet Jones continued to throw and throw and throw and throw summore.
Memo to June: Your boy isn't gonna' win the Heisman. For starters, Hawaii is so far removed from the rest of the country that not even the west coast writers care. Secondly, most of the country won't see this kid play since Hawaii is rarely on TV. But dammit, you could crash the BCS this year...but you won't if you continue to neglect a guy who runs for 8.8 yards a carry just to showcase your boy.
8. The Fat 10 Network
Just stop. Please. Stop with the commercials. Stop with the newspaper ads. Stop with trying to get us all misty-eyed by some corn farmer raising an IU flag on his farm and declaring "This is Big Ten country..." No it isn't. No one human being that's a college football diehard feels as though they are missing out by not having your Gawwwdamn network. We got to see Michigan get tuned by Oregon and Penn State beat up on Fat Boy; the two games we cared about the most.
And whiny Fat 10 fans whining that they can't see their school, ja ever hear of this thing called "radio?" Ohh man, it's fabulous. You turn it on and it's all oratory, meaning that announcers paint a picture for you in your mind (you do remember how to use one of those, right?) and then you don't have to stay strapped to the couch and can do other things. Like compose cynical blogs.
7. North Carolina State/Tom O'Brien
O'Brien leaves Boston College for North Carolina State because he feels it's a better environment for football and, oh, ohh yeah, more money helps too. And Boston College goes down and beats that ass 37-17. Of course, in typical ACC fashion Boston College will lose its next two and falter as they always do.
And to N.C. State: congrats on firing one mediocre slap and replacing him with another mediocre slap. At least with Amato we could laugh at his silly sunglasses and C-cup rack. Tom O'Brien looks like the father of every girl we dated in high school.
Where do we begin? First of all their offense piled up a whopping 103 yards in its 35-0 butt tuning at the hands of Iowa. They had five first downs the entire game. Yes, that wasn't a typo. Five. And it doesn't get much better for the 'Cuse with Illinois on the schedule next. Yes, we're aware that Illinois sucks but, seriously, is there a winnable game on the Oranges' schedule? They have Buffalo on Oct. 20 but...Buffalo hung 42 on Temple this past weekend.
And if you're saying, "yeah, but that's Temple," you're wrong. Syracuse is Temple. Is it too late to send them to the ACC instead?5. Minnesota
Minnesota realy is the Pitt of the Fat 10. They play in an off-campus, rented stadium (although a new on-campus stadium is forthcoming), always have expectations, never do shit, have a fan base that kinda cares but not really and sell out about as often as Lindsay Lohan goes to a bar and says, "I'll just have ginger ale."
Minnesota fires Glen Mason at the end of last season (which ended with one of the biggest bowl game choke jobs) and , boy, has it done wonders. The Gophers lost last week to Bowling Green and barely pulled out a victory against Miami (Oh.) this week. And spare us the "well, he needs to get his recruits in place" rhetoric. Fat 10 teams should beat MAC teams on talent alone.
4. Charlie Weis
Don't look now but Ralph Kramden's team hasn't scored an offensive touchdown all year. Allow me to repeat that. Their quarterback...has yet...to get the ball into the endzone...via a ground game or air attack...in two games. The good news is that the Fatting Irish play a Michigan team with a horrendous defense next week. The bad news is that staff writers at Panther Rants could penetrate Notre Dame's front seven. And with Michigan State, Purdue and UCLA forthcoming after Michigan, it's foreseeable that the All-You-Can-Eat-Buffet could start the season 1-5 or 0-6. And should that happen, will the Notre Dame faithful be as understanding with Weis as they were with Tyrone Willingham?3. Michigan fans
I don't know what's worse: you people or the fact that ABC in their Fat 10 lovin' wisdom were showing us how disheveled and shocked you all were when Oregon was tuning that ass. Congrats, Michigan fans, you know you how it feels to be a Pitt fan, an Arizona State fan, a Washington fan, a Kansas fan and a fan of any team that knows it's not their God given right to go to a New Years Day bowl every year. Welcome to humility, Michigan fans, it's highly overdue.
2. South Florida
It's hard to not respect what Jim Leavitt has done at South Florida. A decade ago he was hired and given a single-wide trailer as an office, a tin can on a string as a phone and a box of ball points and told, "start a football program." In 10 years the guy has built a team that's upset top 10 teams Louisville and West Virginia in back-to-back seasons and the upended Auburn Saturday night.
But, sonofabitch, does the guy need a new offensive coordinator.
Auburn turned the ball over five times. Twice they fumbled it away on their own 25 yard line. And South Florida capitalized on these miscues to the tune of...no points whatsoever.
Memo to USF: the forward pass has been legal in college football for quite some time. Use it. It's useless to keep running the ball in order to set up....the same damn running play again. Not to mention that Groethe is pretty damn good rolling out of that pocket and throwing 10 yard patterns. Yeah, you won this time, but you're not gonna' get the luxury of a shitty quarterback like Brandon Cox playing against you every weekend.
1. Virginia Tech
Major props to the Virginia Tech Hokies for eliminating the heartache early this year. Once upon a time Tech would come barrelling into conference play undefeated with hopes of the BCS and national title. And many a time, at the hands of such powerhouse schools like Pitt, Syracuse, and the like they'd fall flat on their face. This season appears to be no exception as they mustered a mere 149 yards of offense in an whopping at the hands of a real top-10 program: LSU. What was supposed to be a clash of big defense quickly turned into a one-sided ass whipping as LSU rolled up 598 yards of total offense. Two points:
(A) To ESPN: stop telling me about Bud Goddam Foster and his Goddam lunch pail. We've been hearing about this crap for seven years and it's been old for about six of them. And this year we get to hear about how Foster added a card to the pail with the names of the 32 students killed in April. After Saturday's game, the families of those killed should be ask that the card be removed out of respect. Haven't these people suffered enough?
(B) To the national media: Stop ranking this team so high. We go through this every year: Tech starts off in the top 10 with high hopes and a lot of returning starters and Beamer Ball and lunch pail and blah blah blah. And every damn year, with the exception of two (one with Michael Vick in a weak Big East and another in 2004 with a down ACC), we get to watch these slaps play in the Peach Bowl. USC deserves to be top five every year, as does LSU, Oklahoma and Texas. They have the BCS appearances to prove it. Tech? Not even close. Just stop.