5-at-10: College football, NFL madness, Finley over/under and inexact experts

5-at-10: College football, NFL madness, Finley over/under and inexact experts

November 4th, 2013 by Jay Greeson in Sports - Columns

Here's hoping you enjoyed the weekend as much as the 5-at-10 clan did. Good times.

From the "Talks too much" studios, buckle up buttercup.

Missouri quarterback Maty Mauk, left, scrambles away from Tennessee defensive lineman Jacques Smith (55) during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, in Columbia, Mo.

Missouri quarterback Maty Mauk, left, scrambles away from...

Photo by Associated Press /Times Free Press.

College football rewind

And welcome back from the Jomo Weekend. Yes, 5-at-10 regular Jomo11, he of the consistent orange jabs and the coach-speak undersell of the his UTC Mocs, had about as good a weekend football-wise as anyone could possibly expect. Here's hoping he bought a lottery ticket, too.

Let's rewind the college football weekend, and do it with five story lines that are only climbing in interest:

* Dobbs' debut: Tennessee went to Missouri and got its clock cleaned. (Side question: How great and under-used is that expression, "got their clock cleaned," all things considering? It started in the 1800s and took off when Twain used a variation of it "Roughing It" in the 1870s. And gang, know this, if it's good enough for Twain - or Lewis Grizzard - then it's good enough for us. That dog'll bite you.) As for the final outcome of the Vols 31-3 drubbing at Missouri, well, the score was not pretty. The game was not pretty. That said, Dobbs was fine in his debut. He was not overwhelmed by the moment and he threw the ball well. Some dropped passes and a dump truck load of penalties - as many as six procedure penalties from a senior-laden offensive line? - sidetracked the offense way more than anything Dobbs did or did not do. And we'll give the UT play-calling somewhat of a pass, considering Dobbs appears to be the only healthy QB in the program this side of Condredge Holloway, but in a normal situation with a QB as athletic as Josh Dobbs, 42 passes and seven runs is not a good mix. Let's just say that those who played the Tigers - both the Missouri and the Auburn versions - in their entertainment wagering fared nicely. (Side note: The up-and-down status of the Fab 4 picks continued with a 2-3 week, that included two losses before we even got to Saturday.)

* BCS chaos: The BCS experts... wait one second. If you are an expert in an inexact science, are you an inexact expert? What happened to the experts when they thought, nay, they knew the Earth was flat. Those experts then did what exactly when the whole around-the-world thing happened? Did they have like online courses then and maybe they could wait tables at Ye Ole Tavern while they got a second degree? Where were we?

Oh yes, the BCS. OK, FSU pasted Miami - the second time the Seminoles have drubbed a top-10 foe - and passed Oregon for the No. 2 spot in the BCS. Oregon will get its national spotlight game Thursday night when the Ducks face Stanford. The math is pretty simple according the BCS bozos - Oregon almost assuredly will pass FSU for the No. 2 spot with a win over The Cardinal. Also left on the outside looking in will be THE Ohio State and even Baylor, regardless if either of those teams runs the table. Sure, there are a lot of folks saying, "We need a playoff," and that appears to be more true now than ever. (Well, other than 2004, which we can all agree was a travesty.) Still, if the expected happens, you could have as many as five unbeaten teams from major conferences standing there - never mind BCS busters from Fresno State and Northern Illinois - a situation that a four-team playoff does not address. So it goes.

Tell us more about this world being flat thing, Tom Cruise.

* Alabama-LSU: What a monster week, huh? Oregon-Stanford on Thursday night. Baylor-Oklahoma on Thursday night. Alabama-LSU on Saturday night. Think many FSU fans are buying LSU gear this weekend? As of right now, the Tide are an 11-point favorite over LSU. It's the 51st consecutive game that Alabama has been favored (Alabama has been on an average a three-TD favorite over that span) and it's the biggest spread for the Tide over LSU since 1999. The last time Alabama was not favored was the 2009 SEC championship against Florida, way back when people thought Tim Tebow was a good quarterback. And that the Earth was flat.

* Mocs mania: We discussed it some last week, about how big this moment was and could be for the UTC Fighting Huesmans. And they delivered. They delivered on the field and within their helmets. They handled the adversity and the situation. The continue to hurdle injuries like a freak combination of Edwin Moses and Hawkeye Pierce. (We prefer Hawkeye Moses, thank you.) And now, the Mocs, winners of five in a row for the first time since they thought the world was, we don't know, flat, control their fate. Think about that. The Mocs control their fate. When we got to Chattanooga a little more than a decade ago, the Mocs had a tough time controlling their tempers. Now, they have the SoCon title in the mix and the light at the end of the tunnel is not a train. Good times.

* And while we're on the Mocs, we asked on The Twitter on Saturday, and we'll put this out there for you UTC folks, to finish this sentence: "This is the biggest Mocs win since..." Some folks said biggest ever, which we can see an argument for. Some said biggest since last week, which seems a little understated and downplayed in our view. The stepping-stone affect is more of a forward play than a backward one. Yes, the win at Boone raises the stakes for Saturday against Wofford, but beating App State at App State can't be dismissed or downplayed for a UTC program that is trying to take the steps to move from consistently competitive to supremely and competitively consistent.


Houston Texans' Case Keenum (7) walks off the field after the team's loss to the Indianapolis Colts in an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013, in Houston. Indianapolis won 27-24. (AP Photo/Patric Schneider)

Houston Texans' Case Keenum (7) walks off the...

Photo by Associated Press /Times Free Press.

NFL unknown

The NFL is on its ear. Period. It's complete hysteria. Consider the following and know that all of this happened on a week that exactly one game feature each team with a winning record - and that game is tonight.

- The Houston Texans were well on their way to a season-changing win over Indy on Sunday night. Then coach Gary Kubiak collapsed on the sideline right before halftime and the Colts rallied by the emotional and puzzled Texans, turning a 21-3 halftime Houston lead into a 27-24 Colts win. This came days after news broke that Denver coach John Fox will miss the next several weeks because of heart surgery after collapsing last week at a North Carolina golf course.

- The biggest name this weekend likely was Incognito. Yes, Richie Incognito, the suspended Miami offensive line who appears to be the center of a locker room bullying case that has the Dolphins looking to the NFL to investigate. This has escalated since Jonathan Martin left the team last month, and reports came out this weekend that Martin gave Incognito $15K to help fund a Vegas trip. And if an NFL team is looking for the NFL to intervene after Spygate and Bountygate and Heaven-knows-which-other-gate, well, there is troubling brewing.

- Raise you hand if you had Nick Foles tying the NFL record for most TD passes in a single game with seven against Oakland on Sunday.

- OK, no one had Nick Foles. But that leads us to this question: What is the biggest surprise - Foles getting his name in the record book next to ; the Kansas Chiefs being 9-0, and winning Sunday without an offensive touchdown; or the Steelers being historically bad? (The 55 points allowed to the Patriots on Sunday were the most ever allowed by a Pittsburgh defense. Ouch-standing.)

- And speaking of surprises, how about the Atlanta Falcons now being in position to have a top-five pick in one of the deepest NFL drafts in recent memory. While the Jags, the Bucs and the Vikings are ahead in the "Terrible for Teddy" sweepstakes and each one of those teams has to have a QB, the Falcons could have a top-five pick with dominating defensive perimeter players Jadeveon Clowney or Anthony Barr on the board. Clowning around for Clowney could take on.


Jimmie Johnson (48) races against Kyle Busch (18) during the NASCAR Sprint Cup series auto race at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013. Johnson went on to win the race. (AP Photo/Brandon Wade)

Jimmie Johnson (48) races against Kyle Busch (18)...

Photo by Associated Press /Times Free Press.


The "drive fast, turn left" crew took to Texas this weekend. As the Chase heads to the homestretch, the man that everyone has to beat is looking too tough again.

Jimmie Johnson won at Texas on Sunday, taking a seven-point lead in the standings. We are living through a historic and sport-changing performance by Johnson, who is on the verge of winning his sixth points title since 2006.

Gang, the record is seven titles, shared by The King and The Intimidator. And Johnson, who needs a nickname with 'The' in front of it desperately, could very well get there as soon as next year.

Maybe this is a true testament of our far NASCAR has drifted off the radar in the last five-to-eight years. Jimmie Johnson can make a hard claim to be on the Rushmore of Active athletes with a legit chance to be mentioned as the best ever with a couple of quarterbacks, Tiger, LeBron and a sprinter or two in today's sports.

And other than having the second-best unibrow in sports today, Johnson is what? A mid-level star by comparison? He hardly moves the needle in the grand landscape and is certainly behind Dale Jr., and likely behind Tony Stewart and even Jeff Gordon in his own sport.

Dude just wins baby. Somewhere Al Davis smiles, remembering his catch phrase, and knowing two things: He was right about Lane Kiffin and those knuckleheads that thought the world was flat were the Scientologists of their day.


This and that

- Reggie Jackson is ticked that people are calling David Ortiz Mr. October. Uh, sorry Reggie. Dude has been better in the playoffs than you. But if we must change it, maybe Ortiz could be October Knight or King October. Does that work for you, mister?

- The Chinese Fire Drill instructors who advised the TSSAA on its playoff structures should be told that the world is no longer flat. Flat heads.

- If the early line stands and Tennessee is only getting seven from Auburn, then you have our permission to risk more than entertainment. Granted you'd have to fly to Vegas since that is the only way in this country to make more than a gentleman's wager.


Today's question(s)

Gang we have a ton of things to discuss. A ton.

We could have asked this in the college football section, but it needs to be mentioned some where, but where would Georgia be if Todd Gurley had not gotten hurt? Dude is such a difference maker.

We will ask this all week, because we are extremely interested in your view. In fact we will ask variations of this a couple of times this week in an effort to explore the question. But we'll start with the wide-sweeping one: Over/under at Finley on Saturday for the biggest game for UTC since The Cosby Show was on TV? If we posted it at 12,000 would you take the over or the under?

What else you got? Who won the weekend.