COLLEGE STATION, TX - SEPTEMBER 24: A general view of Kyle Field on September 24, 2011 in College Station, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
The Viewing Guide returns on our shiny new toy over here at Good Bull Hunting. First, I’d like to offer a hearty thank you to our friends at Barking Carnival for housing my musings and inane analysis for the past couple seasons. Hopefully the BC commenters feel welcome to join in on the circus in the comments.
Week 2 offers up a paltry dish of games, but its football, and football is our lifeblood. We dive in to the shallow end after the jump.
All times Central - where your high fructose corn syrup is raised
Thursday, September 6
Pittsburgh at Cincinnati | 7 PM | ESPN
OOOOOOOF. ESPN drew a blind, three legged dog walking face first into a wood chipper in this matchup. In case you missed it, Pitt lost by two touchdowns to coach factory Youngstown State in Paul Chryst's debut. Poor, poor Pitt. Their fans don't deserve this. They are on coach number four in three seasons and there is nary a kielbasa of hope in sight. Just make Dan Marino and Tony Dorsett co-head coaches and give the program some panache. You play in a half empty NFL stadium for shitssake. Pitt is Miami without the weather, nightlife, swagger, and access to quality South American street drugs.
Cincinnati is gifted and has a good crack at winning that league. Nice rust-belty message to run in lockstep to Obama's speech that night.
Friday, September 7
Utah at Utah State | 7 PM | ESPN2
Did someone say politics? I kid, I kid. Romney is far too elitist for state schools and senses of humor. The Utah State Aggies are actually a fun team to watch. They have a nice coach in Gary Andersen who was the defensive coordinator at Utah prior to taking the head gig in Logan.
I find the Utes criminally underrated and probably the biggest threat to derail USC's season that isn't of Oregon foie gras flavor. This is not poor Friday viewing.
Saturday, September 8
New Hampshire at Minnesota | 11 AM | Big Ten Network
I do not jest when I tell you that New Hampshire has a good shot at winning this game. No need to watch this paste eating contest though. Moving on.
UCF at Ohio State | 11 AM | ESPN2
SANCTIONS! NO BOWL GAMES. This is actually a decent game to watch for the 11 AM slot. We get to see the Urban boys against some stiffer competition than what they had to deal with last week in a rout of the Miami Redhawks. I imagine the Southwest flights between Columbus and Orlando use at least 20% more fuel hauling around that jersey-clad human cargo. RIP fuel.
Penn State at Virginia | 11 AM | ABC
I'm trying to find an opinion on this game. Coming up completely empty. The Wahoos had eight wins last year and I reckon they win in mundane fashion here. Bill O'Brien is going to have a helluva time managing the morale of the Nittany Lions. They were propped up with the rallying cry of their home crowd last week and the whole unity aspect, but a 0-2 start could be mighty crippling. Not quite as crippling as the thought of being unable to be competitive until 2018 at the earliest, but still not a pleasant notion.
Auburn at Mississippi State | 11 AM | ESPN
Auburn needs to right the ship quickly before heading into what is sure to be a cowbelly Davis Wade Stadium.
Miami (FL) at Kansas State (21) | 11 AM | FX
Not an easy couple weeks of travel to start the season for the Canes. Miami rallied for a nice 42-31 win over Boston College on the road despite giving up 542 yards including 441 through the air. The Canes now travel to Miami's sister city of Manhattan to face Snyder's Cats who struggled with Missouri State for a couple quarters before running them out of the stadium. I think the Wildcats win and the kids get crunk clubbing the hell out of the Little Apple.
Purdue at Notre Dame (22) | 2:30 PM | NBC
I mentioned it over in the BlogPoll, but I was impressed with Notre Dame's crispness in the first week of the season over on the Emerald Isle. The front seven is active and physical, this we know. Now the secondary is faced with a more traditional offense to test their merits.
Purdue is going to beat a couple teams this year that come as a surprise. Vegas likes the Irish at -14.5. That's pretty wide for my blood. The Irish will be looking for their first 2-0 start since 2008.
Air Force at Michigan (19) | 2:30 PM | ABC/ESPN2
The hampered Wolverine defense is gifted the opportunity of going from facing one of the most physical offenses in Alabama to facing an option attack of cuts, chops, and chips. Michigan should still walk away with a victory, but their front seven is going to be crawling for the training table after the first couple weeks of the season.
USC (2) vs. Syracuse (East Rutherford, NJ) | 2:30 PM | ABC/ESPN2
The Orange lost in painful fashion at home last week 42-41 to Northwestern in their basketball arena. Meanwhile, USC throttled Hawaii with all the palpable Lane Kiffin dickishness you'd expect aimed at former colleague Norm Chow. The Trojans are going to take their NFL ready talent into an NFL stadium and beat the piss out of a Syracuse program that desperately yearns for the attention of their distant father named Manhattan. Expect some serious broing by Mark Sanchez on the USC sidelines and also expect the Reverend Joe McKnight to collect the offering in the parking lot.
Florida (24) at Texas A&M | 2:30 PM | ESPN
The Good Bull associates have you covered on this matchup on every front. It's going to be hot, disgusting, and beautiful. Drink an extra couple waters for every beer and be liberal with the talc. I recall my first fall in Aggieland and being so confused and then irate that the weather doesn't feel like "fall" until sometime around midnight of Thanksgiving eve. Be loud out there, Ags.
Iowa State at Iowa | 2:30 PM | Big Ten Network
The Hawkeyes got their first taste of the eccentric ways of a Greg Davis offense en route to a Midwestern, passive aggressive win over Northern Illinois to the tune of 18-17 in Chicago. The Cyclones had a nice win over Tulsa at home behind the kickass Steele Jantz and his cop partner Shontrelle Johnson at running back.
The Hawkeyes will be looking to win back the CyHawk trophy after 2011's 3OT thriller up in Ames. Vegas likes Ferentz's men -5, but I'm a Paul Rhodes man. Not only to cover, but to win outright. If anything, I just want to see Rhodes postgame speech to his players.
Wisconsin (13) at Oregon State | 3 PM | FX
Hot damn. I'm not sure I can keep penning missives on B1G programs that slogged through Week 1. The Badgers needed a defensive stand against Rose Bowl hopeful Northern Iowa to avoid upset. Bielema now takes the squad on the Oregon Trail out to Corvallis for a tilt with the Beavers. This is Oregon State's first game of the season, and Mike Riley could sure use a signature win in the goodwill deposit box for his career. Riley is widely respected throughout the coaching ranks, but the hot seat is beginning to singe after a 2011 that yielded a scant three wins.
Washington at LSU (3) | 6 PM | ESPN
I'm writing this post from up in Seattle. I've been to night games in Baton Rouge. In many ways, Seattle might as well be an island. It isn't close to anything and was settled by Norwegians who don't travel where the salmon don't swim. I've tried to scare up some chatter with the Huskie fans I've happened upon. They are an amicable, docile group that would rather get a five mile paddle board sesh in before the football game for some cardio and sightseeing. Essentially, they are the exact opposite of Tiger fans. I can't wait to get the reports back from Seattlites who make the trip down to Death Valley. Tigers should win by double digits, but Coach Sark has some good things happening with the Huskies. Hell, a coach who brings a live tiger to practice is good in ColoradoAg's book.
Texas Tech at Texas State | 6 PM | ESPN3
A Fran defense got a FBS offensive coordinator to resign after one game. Let that marinate for a minute. Football will never cease to amaze. Look the hell out, Tech. Let's just say my Monday morning coffee reading is going to be the San Marcos police blotter after this game. Red Raiders versus the Bobcats! Brought to you on ESPN3 by Plan B!
Nebraska (16) at UCLA | 6:30 PM | FOX
I can't do anymore B1G. Taylor Martinez has some media thinking he's Fernando Valenzuela (couldn't think of a Latin quarterback) after a bawdy stat line against Southern Miss. UCLA beat up on Rice, so there's that.
Georgia (7) at Missouri | 6:45 PM | ESPN2
Now we're talking. For my upset of the week I'm taking the Tigers over the Bulldogs. Mark Richt has lost control of the new SEC members.
New Mexico at Texas (17) | 7 PM | Longhorn Network
Coawphch Bawf Davphie pulled in a W for the Lobos and a program that has been in wreckage for years. Yeah, it was against Southern, but you need to know just how bad New Mexico has been lately. The former A&M defensive coordinator and Notre Dame head coach now gets to take on the Horns on the LHN.
As for the Horns, we won't have a good read on if they've taken the appropriate steps on offense until the Week 4 trip to Stillwater, but this should be a nice game for Ash to pile up some stats and build confidence.
Illinois at Arizona State | 9:30 PM | ESPN
Oklahoma State (18) at Arizona | 9:30 PM | Pac-12 Network
DESERT GAMES! Watch the scoreboards light up as you dose from a day-long brownout into sweet slumber. An old pastime of mine is watching these games, waking up Sunday not remembering who was winning, and trying to guess the outcome before checking the laptop.
Drink of the Week:
Booker's! Bourbon! I went to one of the better cocktail establishments I'd ever been to up in Seattle recently - a little place called Canon. It had a spirits menu longer than our tax code and barkeeps that could whip up some crafty poison. Anyway, I was homesick for football country, so I opted for some Kentucky brown I hadn't had in quite some time. Gang, Booker's ain't for fooling around. Now, I'd had Booker's before, but forgot that it is uncut and straight from the barrel. What this yields is a proof in the 121-127 range and a buzz that will get you talking mess to Pac-12 fans in no time.
I recommend both highly. Enjoy the games, gang.