Gus Malzahn. Yes, we have been hard on ol' Gus — and he has deserved it — but Saturday had to be a sweet win for the Auburn head coach. He now has three wins over Nick Saban, and as TFP college football ace David Paschall noted in his excellent coverage of the game Auburn is 4-6 against Saban and the Tide in the 2010s, a time frame in which Alabama has put together one of the best decade runs ever in college football.
The college football playoff committee. The scenarios seem pretty easy now, right? And those scenarios play into the hands of ease and inclusion across the Power 5. After Alabama's stumble in Auburn, barring some craziness — THE Ohio State is more than a two-TD favorite over Wisconsin in the Big Ten title game and Clemson is more than a four-TD favorite over Virginia in the ACC title game — the SEC title game will determine the field. If LSU wins, then the committee will pick either the Big 12 champ (Oklahoma or Baylor) or Utah, if it beats Oregon in the Pac-12 title game.
Greg Nolan. The Ravens OC has to be a hot name on the NFL coaching carousel, and why not. What he's done with Lamar Jackson is not only eye-popping, but with the growing number of running, spread-threat QBs playing similar systems in college, his new system offers great value for teams who can find QBs on rookie deals. It's the future friends.
Will Healy. Our buddy and friend of Press Row, Healy has Charlotte in a bowl game for the first time in program history. The 49ers got their seventh win on Saturday and the program his headed to the Bahamas Bowl. Healy delivered the news dressed as Scuba Steve. Good times. Strike that. Great times.
Luka Doncic. The Mavs second-year star is looking more and more like the future of the league. He went for 29-9-10 as Dallas ended the Lakers' 10-game winning streak over the weekend. He has 15 consecutive games with at least 20 points, five rebounds and five assists. The only players since the merger with longer streaks are Jordan and Russell Westbrook.
Ole Miss wide receiver Elijah Moore. Yes, it was Thanksgiving night, but wow, what an end to the Egg Bowl. Moore scored a TD with four seconds left, celebrated by getting on all fours, lifting his leg and pretending to urinate like a dog. The 15-yard penalty pushed the PAT back, and the kicker missed it. The fallout has been harsh.
Jim Harbaugh. Dude got waxed by THE Ohio State. Again. Then he went all super sensitive in the postgame news conference, saying he would "answer questions not insults" even though the questions was perfectly fine.
NFC East. Dallas is 6-6 and 4-0 in the division. Philly, which lost to Miami on Sunday, is 5-7 and is in control of the division race if it wins out. That leads us to the Giants and Redskins, who are worse than bad. Seriously, if the Redskins and the Giants combined, the Ravens would still be a 9-point favorite over the New Yorkington GiaSkins.
Alabama. Yes, we had a winner and a loser from the same game, but that Iron Bowl had a little bit of everything. Did you know that Alabama is in the bottom 15 in the country in penalties and penalty yards? Yes, it's a lofty standard that Nick Saban has set, but I had no idea that the Tide had been in the top five of the AP poll for the last 68 weeks. They fell to No. 9 after the Iron Bowl loss. Also of note, Paschall on The Spot had this interesting angle about the Tide's motivation in the bowl season.
This bettor. OK, we have discussed bad beats in gambling before, but this one is staggeringly bad. Like all-time bad. Some Daily Fantasy player named Carney259 finish third, 0.4 points out of first and made $40,000 this weekend. That's a great weekend by any measure. But if the Kansas City Chiefs had not blocked a meaningless extra point and ran it back for two points late in their win over Raiders, Carney259 would have won the whole thing and pocketed $960,000. Wow.
Let the Carousel spin
OK, it started across the country with FSU firing Willie Taggert. Arkansas dropped Chad Morris not long after.
Now the shoes are falling like we're cleaning out Imelda Marcos closet.
Matt Luke is out at his alma mater after the Egg Bowl disaster. Barry Odom is out at his alma mater after a 24-25 run that included NCAA issues and a severely disappointing 6-6 finish after a 5-1 start in 2019. Charlie Strong was sacked at South Florida and we all expect that USC is going to move on from Clay Helton, right?
It creates the great drama of the coaching carousel, and some of the same names will be bounced around.
You have to believe some of the big openings are going to kick the tires on Urban Meyer.
From there the names will somewhat overlap.
Memphis coach Mike Norvell will be a hot name. I think Lane Kiffin's name will be bounced around too.
And yes, I'd kick the tires on Will Healy too. (If you are Will Healy, other than the money, I think I'd wait for better situations than Ole Miss or Missouri.)
There will be more openings too, especially by the names who move for the current openings.
This and that
— Nice win for Tennessee, which is 7-5 and likely will be a coveted bowl invitee next Sunday.
— Speaking of coaching openings, it looks as if Rutgers is going back to the future with Greg Schiano.
— Picks were rather blah after a hot start to the weekend. We went 3-5 over all in college picks and moved to 57-48-2. That's 54.3 percent. The NFL picks went 3-2 — did not see the Pats' blowout coming and that has to be the last time I back Freddie Kitchens in anything other than a hot-dog-eating contest — for the weekend. We are a crazy-good 46-27-2 against the number on NFL games. That's 63 percent against the number gang, and that is extremely entertaining.
— Yes, we are going to get better about having a basketball pick every day. We are 7-7 on college hoops — and we made a little coin this weekend with FSU-UT under 137.5 over the weekend. (Although that does not count on the standings for obvious reasons. FSU can guard people, friends.)
— Yes, bonus pick, but did you know last weekend was the first time the Patriots and the Crimson Tide lost on the same weekend since 2011 when Alabama lost 9-6 to LSU? Nuts.
— If, like me, you are apt to listen to Christmas music now that the season is upon, you may find this interesting. A poll revealed that Mariah Carey's record-setting "All I Want for Christmas is You" as the most-annoying Christmas song. Thoughts?
Weekend winners and losers. Go.
Aaron Rodgers is 36 today. Best I've ever seen play the position. Not saying he's the GOAT. Saying he's the best. There's a difference.
Britney Spears is 38.
The first Model A Ford was sold on this day in 1927.
Punt Bama Punt happened on this day in 1972.
Today is Cyber Monday. You an online Christmas shopper?
Rushmore of phrases with a day in there. Go.