Two years ago, I asked for your college football-related questions, and the resulting post, for some reason, became the most widely read post to ever appear on Uncle Crappy (the blog).
Because there’s little else on my mind this week, let’s do it again. Ask Uncle Crappy (the person) anything at all related to college football — even tangentially — and I’ll do my best to A) come up with an accurate answer or B) make some shit up.
And if you’re feeling ambitious, you can also answer this: The current point spread for Saturday’s game is 12. Will Ohio State cover?
Thank you in advance for playing.
Dear Uncle Crappy, what is the worst college football mascot? What is the ugliest mascot costume? What are the worst college team colors?
HP: I may be a little biased, but Michigan’s wolverine might be the worst, for one reason: wolverines aren’t found in the state. Anywhere.
There are ugly mascot costumes all over; some of them work (Western Kentucky’s Big Red) and some of them don’t (the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slug). But you’ve seen the ugliest in person: Toledo’s awful combo of their Power Ranger and the Blue Condom guy.
Worst colors? Maize and Blue. That was easy.
Why are quarterbacks traditionally the most attractive players on the field? Every now and then you get a good looking receiver or punter, but for the most part the quarterbacks get all the attractive genes.
Also, how do you feel about a playoff system for college ball?
PC: All quarterbacks are the descendants of Joe Namath — not the old drunk one who hit on Suzy Kolber, but the young drunk one who wore pantyhose.
Playoffs? Yes, please. A system based on polls and computers still has too much bias towards the “power” conferences, and makes it too difficult for teams from other leagues to break through. This year’s TCU team is one of the best college football teams I’ve seen in a long time, and I’d love to see them get a shot in the title game if they finish undefeated.
So let’s do this: 16 teams, selected by an NCAA committee, make the tournament. First round games are played on campus. Current bowl games host subsequent rounds; the current BCS bowls (Rose, Fiesta, Sugar and Orange) rotate hosting the semis and the championship game. Yes, travel would be tough on fans, but no tougher than it is for people traveling to the site of the Final Four. And for the TV folks — ohmygod, think of the money.
(This will never happen, by the way, so I’d settle for using the current BCS games as a mini-playoff. Seed ’em according to BCS rank, last two standing play for the title. You’d still have some of the gripes about the current system, but at least a TCU would have a chance to find out if they belong.)
Ok. As we know, I’m in love with the Ohio State Marching Band’s Script Ohio. LOVE. A 4th or 5th year sousaphone player dots the “i” each time it’s performed. And this is where my questions begin:
– Who else has dotted the “i” in the past?
– If you can find it, why were they given the honor?
– And how do we get them to let you or I do it? lol. Somehow the best hat on the planet has got to convince them, right? Especially the TOP of the hat???? I mean, really…
1) The honorary I-dotter is a cool thing, because it’s decided strictly by the band, and not by the university or the trustees or anyone dumb like that. I have seen several in person: Bob Hope, Woody Hayes (the coolest of them all. Like everyone else in the building, my dad and I cried like babies), Jack Nicklaus, current OSU President Gordon Gee and, in September, John and Annie Glenn. There have been only a couple of others; another former university president and an athletics department official.
2) I don’t know if there are announced reasons for bestowing the honor, but they all have at least some connection to the university, the band or the state of Ohio. In Woody’s case, it happened several years after he was fired. He had been coming to games for a while, but he always sat up in the press box; his Script was the first time he made an actual appearance at a game since he had been head coach.
3) Given that this is decided by the band, I’d suggest making one more hat and giving it to Jon Woods, the current band director. If anyone can make it happen, it would be Dr. Woods. But for god’s sake, don’t make another hat — I really like having the only one.
Here’s an easy one: Why don’t they shut up about Tim Tebow already?
Subquestion: Why do QBs seem to always have the same kind of name? Colt. Tim. Chase. Sam. Eli. Ben. Even Peyton somehow fits. Are they bred for quarterbackdom?
Professor Aaaaaargh: Once he falls to the fourth round of the NFL draft, Saint Tebow will go away quietly.
Subanswer: Yes, although you’re focusing more on the Southern branch of the Namath family.
“Can I *hic* kiss you?”
All right. What is the very least (and I mean very) I need to know about college football to, say, hang with yinz? what about a Penn State fan? What about a [insert college team here] fan? Do I have to learn something new every season?
RPM: Our crowd is much more interested in Sunday football, so you don’t have to actually know much. Do this: Every Monday, check the poll rankings for Pitt and Penn State, and then complain about the BCS (Bowl Championship Series) a lot. That should be enough.
Specifics for Penn State: They’re 6-11 against Ohio State since joining the Big Ten in 1993. The Lions’ overall record against OSU is 12-13.
Specifics for Ohio State (you knew that was the school I was going to pick, right?): head coach Jim Tressel is 7-1 against Michigan. He’s also won five straight games against the Wolverines.
Learning something new every year: It can’t hurt. This goes hand-in-hand with BCS griping — figure out which team from a non-BCS conference is doing well (TCU and Boise State this year) and then grumble that they’re not getting a decent shot at the title.
You’re all set.
So, about William and Amherst…who is the lame step-child of the rivalry known as “The Little Three”? And why is Williams-Amherst known as the Biggest Little Game in America?
1) Wesleyan (Yeah, I had to look this up).
2) I’m not looking this up, because I think my guess is pretty good. If I recall correctly, the annual Williams-Amherst game is the longest-standing football rivalry in Division III; it’s also (I think) one of the top three or four longest-standing rivalries in any level of college football. And no matter how much I tease you about it, that’s definitely worthy of any college football fan’s respect.
And one more…what school thinks Williams is its big rival, yet Williams couldn’t care any less?
Is my mind failing me or am I correct in flashbacks of seeing Drew Carey impersonating Woody at Hineygate?
Kewyson: You’re close — that was me.
1. Should the Big Ten add another team to get a championship game?
2. If so, who should they add?
Here was my idea for the BCS Playoff at some point last year. I stand behind it this year as well:
We all agree the BCS sucks, but here’s what makes it even harder to stomach. If you made an 8 team playoff using the current BCS Rankings, here are the first four games:
1. Alabama 11-0
8. Penn State 11-1
2. Texas 10-1
7. Texas Tech 10-1
3. Oklahoma 10-1
6. Utah 12-0
4. Florida 10-1
5. USC 9-1
It picks up all the “Good One Loss Teams”. It leaves out the Big East and the ACC because the conferences are awful. I don’t understand why we can’t do something like this. All four of those games would be AMAZING. If you ran all 4 of those games on December 20, with the winners playing December 27, then the winners of that could play January 5 for the REAL national title.
This year (using current BCS rankings) it would be:
1. Florida (10-0)
8. LSU (8-2)
2. Alabama (10-0)
7. Georgia Tech (10-1)
3. Texas (10-0)
6. Boise State (10-0)
4. TCU (10-0)
5. Cincinnati (10-0)
This year it would leave out a down Big Ten and a Pac 10 that no one seems to want to win. If your conference is down, you don’t get in. That simple. Last year the ACC and Big East didn’t make it. It solves problems and makes for better games. The TV money would be bigger with bigger viewership. It makes perfect sense. Until you see the strangeholds the bowls have on the colleges.
I like your playoff plan; it accomplishes what should be the goal — put the best teams in a position to play for the championship, regardless of what conference you belong to. It would mean the weaker conferences — and I’m including the Big Ten here — to put on their big boy pants and make it without the benefit of an automatic bid.
Let me answer your other question backwards. If the Big Ten should seek out a 12th member, we need to start with Notre Dame. I detest the Irish, but they fit with the conference perfectly and their addition would instantly put the Big Ten Network in the position it was trying to sell before it went on the air. Also, this is about the only option we have that doesn’t involve poaching from another conference.
Other possibilities and comments:
West Virginia. Geographic fit, good program. I’d love an excuse to see games in Morgantown.
Pitt: Also a good geographic fit, and the chance to resurrect the Pitt-Penn State rivalry would be good for college football.
Syracuse: Kind of a stretch geographically, but they can’t be down forever, right? Adding the Orangemen would also give the Big Ten a realistic shot at unseating the ACC as the country’s best basketball conference.
After that … I dunno, Louisville? Bleh.
Having completed that exercise, let me be clear. I don’t want a conference championship game, and I don’t think we need one. Let’s say we add West Virginia. How is the conference split? An eastern division would have Ohio State, Penn State, WVU, Indiana and … both Michigans? Imagine having to play Penn State, WVU Michigan State and Michigan every season, just to make it to the conference title game. And if that’s the split, the western side is horrible — woo, go Wisconsin, over and over and over…
Or, if we put Michigan in the west, does that mean Ohio State doesn’t play them every year? Or does is mean there are seasons when we play them twice, when they win the western division?
I don’t want it. I don’t like it. And I don’t think we need it.
You want me to make another hat???? Are you kidding??? We better find a super sweet way to make the top of the hat better then, to get ourselves to dot the “i” then…. I have zero ideas. But I’d gladly make the trip to bestow it upon Jon Woods…. (god help me…)
I’m not saying you need to make another hat. I’m just saying I’m not giving him mine ;)
So … you asked a question. I’ll take a shot at answering.
Will Ohio State cover?
No. Simply because Michigan has too much riding on this game. They’re playing to save RichRod’s career. And a win against OSU would almost make the pitiful season they’ve had worthwhile.
But OSU still wins the game. It’ll just be closer than everyone (and by everyone, I mean you) would like.
Also … worth a good debate (which I’d like to hear your opinion): Lots of people are clamoring for a Pitt/PSU bowl game. The only way that happens, though, is if Pitt doesn’t win the Big East. Which is better for Pitt … win the Big East and play in a big-time bowl game, or come in second and have a shot at a rivalry that’s been dead for years?
Carla: You’ve got one thing wrong: I always expect a tight Michigan game. But there’s something undeniable about Saturday’s game: Michigan might have the worst defense we’ve seen all year. New Mexico State ranks 90th in scoring defense and 88th in total defense this season, and we beat them 45-0. Michigan’s rankings in the same categories? 84th in scoring D, 89th in total D — yes, worse than freaking New Mexico State.
Sure, Michigan’s offense is much better than that of the Aggies, but still…
And your other question? Win the conference. Another also-ran season doesn’t do anything to help the national perception of the program; winning the Big East and winning a BCS bowl does.
And besides: We have tickets to the Pitt-UC game, and I’d love to see the Panthers kick the shit out of Cincinnati…
It’s time to put your brain into high gear. Here’s a few questions…
Should college football players be paid above and beyond free education? If so, how?
If sports are an extracurricular activity, shouldn’t college football players be required to take advantage of said free education by graduating after 4 or 5 years? Corollary: Should schools be penalized for not requiring significant progress towards education while allowing full participation in extracurrilar activities like college football?
Should college football players be allowed to transfer without penalty if the coach resigns or is fired?
Lastly, list OSU’s National Championship QB’s. I’ll give you one…Matt Krenzel.
Really this is the last one, How many women’s synchronized swimming national title’s has OSU won since 1977? a.) 0 b.) 3 c.) 7 d.) 25
And, why aren’t we women’s synchronized swimming fans? They’re wearing swimsuits and they’re really, really good.
1) All scholarship student-athletes should receive a small stipend. This is an acknowledgement of the extra time they’re expected to spend on their sports and how that can limit their ability to work jobs like their peers.
2) The NCAA already has system like this in place, although it requires graduation in four years. There are penalties as well; the formula is complex, but if enough players don’t finish in time — or if they leave early for a pro career — a program can lose available scholarships.
3) 1942: Les Horvath (won Heisman in 1944); 1954: Dave Leggett; 1957: Frank Kremblas (I think); 1961*: John Mummey; 1968: Rex Kern; 1970*: Rex Kern; 2002: Craig Krenzel (which is what you meant to say).
*Denotes national championships claimed by the university, not by me.
4: Nearly all of them, although the program at Stanford has won a few recently. I’m gonna go with D.
I’m with you on the addition of another team for the Big Ten, but then what do you call the conference – still the Big Ten based on history? I also don’t like the East/West split concept – wouldn’t want to lose the annual rivalry games. Agree that Notre Dame is the best fit and Pitt could be a possibility, WVU – I don’t see them in the mix.
Jennifer: An extra team and a championship game does too much to screw up tradition, and in my mind, that offsets any money to be made.
Ya darn well better not give him yours!!! Maybe we can send him photos? I don’t know…. Hmmm….
Q: Who was the last team from the Big Ten to beat the Florida Gators, the current #1 football team in the nation?
A: Mmmmmm….I wonder who it is??
CB: That would be your Michigan Wolverines, in Lllllloyd Carr’s final game as coach — a game I watched and enjoyed, by the way.
A special question for you. Hm. I could ask which Big Ten team has a worse total defense average than New Mexico State this season, but I already gave that answer away. Ooo, I know: Name the only big Ten team to lose to Appalachian State at home?
Should Bowden’s wins from Howard University be included in his all-time win total?
Susan: It’s certainly OK to note a coach’s overall record when you’re looking at his career. But if we’re talking about the DI wins record? Nope.
Okay, you got me. App. State does have a history of winning a national championship…of course, so did McSweatervest’s YSU teams. At least I applaud UM for scheduling ASU but who would have thought they would have pulled off the upset of the century.
CB: I’m not in favor of any Big 10 schools scheduling DIAA opponents — it’s a no-win situation. Beating them does little to help your program and, as you’re aware, god help you if you lose.