Commentary

DJ Gallo's Varsity Tailgate, Week 10

Originally Published: November 6, 2009
By DJ Gallo | Page 2

It's Week 10 of the college football season and of the Varsity Tailgate. It's getting all grown up! But it's still not of age. Don't serve it. Let's begin.


    

Game of the Week

No. 9 LSU at No. 3 Alabama -- 3:30 p.m. ET on CBS


If you subscribe to BCS Chaos Theory -- which is, of course, the idea that as soon as we get a BCS title game between the likes of TCU and Boise State some season, the college football powers will be forced to finally give us a playoff -- then you want to root for LSU in this game. Florida has already locked up the SEC East, and Alabama can clinch the SEC West with a win here. If that happens, the winner of the SEC championship will make the BCS title game. So, the BCS computer will live on, one year closer to destroying humanity. Geaux Humanity!


    

One More Game of the Week

No. 16 Ohio State at No. 11 Penn State -- 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC


As we saw in the Iowa-Indiana game last week, Big Ten officials will do what's necessary to make sure their top teams succeed. This game features two of the conference's premier programs. And both teams still have a shot at the Rose Bowl. So … hmm. You know what this means? We might actually get a game that is called fairly! Awesome!



Cupcake of the Week


Central Florida: After slipping by Marshall last week by one point at home, the Knights get to travel to Texas to play the No. 2 Longhorns. This should be a fairly significant increase in the level of competition. Marshall is no longer the Thundering Herd of Randy Moss and Chad Pennington. They are the Thundering Herd of, well … a lot of guys you have never heard of.


Cupcake Recipe of the Week

Layer cake

Yes, layer cake is a full-size cake, not a cupcake. But Texas has provided this column with two cupcake teams this season. So in honor of the Horns' dedication to pastries, I thought we should go above and beyond.


Rivalry Game of the Week

None: There are just too many to choose from this week. LSU-Alabama. Penn State-Ohio State. Kansas-Kansas State. BYU-Wyoming. Navy-Notre Dame. Oklahoma-Nebraska. Army-Air Force. Even Duke-North Carolina. Impressive! Or, as North Carolina grad Tyler Hansbrough might say: "Wow!"



Heisman Candidate in the Crosshairs


Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama: Ingram is the presumed Heisman front-runner right now, and he can put some distance between himself and the pack with a big game in a win against LSU on national television. Of course, voters still tend to side with quarterbacks. But that's where Ingram has an ace up his sleeve. From what I've seen of the Crimson Tide, he can probably start at quarterback for them.



Tim Tebow Fact of the Week


With 551 rushing yards through eight games, Tim Tebow is on pace to shatter his single-season high of 895 yards from 2007. Did you also know that Tim Tebow's running causes the Earth's rotation? It's true.



Mascot Fact of the Week


The mascot of the SMU Mustangs is a Shetland pony named Peruna. Shockingly, the university has willingly had a Shetland pony as its mascot for years; it was not part of the NCAA death penalty in 1987.


Tailgate Tip of the Week

Take a camera

College football season is almost over. You'll want to snap some pictures to cherish the memories you've made with all of your friends who mean so much to you. (Don't say that last sentence out loud to anyone at your tailgate.)



Quote of the Week


"The feedback we received thought it was too over-the-top. It conveyed our message incorrectly. We wanted to stir up excitement about the Ohio State-Penn State rivalry. It was not meant to be an attack on Pryor. He's an amazing athlete. It's not an attack on him, and that's not what Penn State is about."
Dan Sturman, Penn State Marketing Association president, on the creation -- and subsequent cancellation -- of a Terrelle Pryor T-shirt emblazoned with the words: "The Nutcracker: a Terrelle Cryer Story."

Get it? "Pryor" rhymes with "Cryer." From the minds that brought you all-white uniforms and logo-free helmets.



Stat of the Week


110: That's how many points USC has allowed in its past three games, the most allowed in a three-game stretch in the program's history. That clever Pete Carroll. Always coming up with ingenious ways to recruit. "You can start for our defense as a freshman! Really! In fact, if you can get your GED diploma by Saturday afternoon, I could plug you in at linebacker!"



Charlie Weis' Hot Seat Temperature


Still warm: Notre Dame plays Navy this week. Two years ago, the 46-44 loss to Navy was the lowlight (highlight?) of a 3-9 season and the impetus to fire up the Charlie Weis hot Barcalounger. Last year, the Fighting Irish withstood a furious Navy comeback in a downpour to win 27-21 in Annapolis. Now we understand where Weis has this "strategic advantage" of his. He somehow figured out a way to make beating Navy a big win for Notre Dame. It may be impossible to fire this guy. Too bad, Notre Dame fans.



Lane Kiffin NCAA Violation of the Week


None: … but Tennessee plays Memphis this week. Maybe Lane can ask around and learn about some of John Calipari's old tricks. Well, I don't know about old. He's probably still using them. He's just moved on again. Anyway … it's worth a shot, Lane!


    

Worst Game of the Week

Florida State at Clemson -- 7:45 p.m. ET on ESPN


The Florida State and Clemson programs are in serious decline. Shocking, considering they're coached by people named Jimbo and Dabo. Inconceiva-bo!



Name of the Week


Brad Smelley, TE, Alabama: Yes, I know. I'm sure I'm not the first one to make this CLEVER observation about Alabama's tight end. That's probably a good thing. Without that last name and the likes of me, he probably wouldn't have had the motivation to develop into 233 pounds of muscle. He just would have been Bradley Nonsmelley, regular guy living in Alabama. You're welcome, Brad. If we ever meet, I'd like a "thanks" instead of a punch. (Please?)



Stone Cold Lock of the Week


Lane Kiffin will respond this way to Urban Meyer's $30,000 fine for criticizing officials.


DJ Gallo is the founder of and sole writer for the sports satire site SportsPickle.com. He also is a regular contributor to ESPN The Magazine and has written for The Onion and Cracked. His first book, "SportsPickle Presents: The View from the Upper Deck," is on sale now.

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