Welcome to the Week 3 of The Sports Bank’s live college football blog! We got a whole host of heated matchups today, headlined by No. 8 California taking on the Golden Prairie Dogs of Minnesota. We’ll have writers posting their reactions to key plays, head-bashing-into-wall disappointments, and surprising play calling that may rival only Nicolas Cage’s acting in their level of terribleness. So sit back, and enjoy the following 22 A.M. games:
No. 8 California at Minnesota
No. 11 Ohio State at Toledo
Eastern Michigan at No. 25 Michigan
Wofford at Wisconsin
Here we go!
Wofford at Wisconsin – 13:39 in the first quarter
mccormjw: On the way to Camp Randall, I noticed that scalpers are like crack dealers. They push their product on you and have some for themselves.
mccormjw That ball must be coated in hand sanitizer. Three fumbles in less than three minutes. ReDONKulous if this continues.
Wisconsin 3, Wofford 0 4:20 in first quarter
mccormjw it took 8 plays to go 7 yards, only to kick a field goal. What a start for Bucky.
Wisconsin 17, Wofford 0 12:50 in second quarter
mccormjw Passing game opened up that last drive. Great punt block for TD. almost as good as one against Minn I witnessed three years ago. Almost.
Wisconsin 24, Wofford 0 9:10 in second quarter
mccormjw Loving Mike Taylor right now. He’s been in on two big plays already.
Wisconsin 31, Wofford 0 Start 0f third quarter
mccormjw And the second half begins. Badgers already ran over the Terriers in first half, so back up and do it again to make sure their really dead.
Wisconsin 31, Wofford 7 4:00 in third quarter
mccormjw Curt Phillips in now. Not a bad time to get him some reps. What’s the over/under on wobbly duck throws? I say 3.
Phillips has already ripped off a few runs in only four plays, all on bootlegs. The guy can definitely push a pile too. He just completed a pretty good throw on a drag route by Lance Kendricks, who has been involved all game as a third string tight end. Te offense doesn’t have a problem scoring, I’ll give it that. Now hold onto the damn ball.
Wisconsin 37, Wofford 7 2:00 in the third quarter
mccormjw On an unrelated note, the Minnesota jerseys are Pac-10 style bad. They must both employ the losers of Project Runway to design them. Puke.
Wisconsin 44, Wofford 7 9:37 in fourth quarter
At this point, I’m done with instant updates seeing as the game is pretty much in the bag. Now to wait until the post game interviews. Good things today: Both parts of the offense clicked well, the defense made some pretty good plays, and there won’t be a repeat of the Cal Poly game from a year ago. Bad: Defense came out flat in the second half, they’re using too much hand sanitizer and can’t hang onto the ball, and the defense is still learning how to finish games.
No. 8 California 21, Minnesota 21 12:38 in the fourth quarter
Here are a few tweets from our resident Gopher fan Peter Christian:
Outfield walls all around the country are happy Eric Decker is gonna play football. He would punish those walls if he stuck with baseball.
Worth mentioning that Decker’s TD catch was one of the best catch and hit plays I’ve seen. Ever.
Cal kicker goes wide right into the open end of the stadium. I love the look of kicking towards the Minneapolis skyline.
Note to Gophers: it is NOT OK to allow a running back run between the tackles and go untouched to the endzone from 30 yards out. NOT OK.
So torn right now, Jahvid Best is probably the best candidate to beat out Tim Tebow for the Heisman, so I want him to do well but not vs. MN
Eric Decker… Your 2009 Biletnikoff Award winner. As long as he isn’t a Chicago Bear next year I’m gonna look forward to him in the NFL
Michigan 31, Eastern Michigan 17 3:29 in the third quarter
H. Jose Bosch: Michigan pulls a reverse and there are jock straps all over the field. Watch out Big Ten.
HJB: Jonny Sears…now on EMU…is probably regretting being kicked off the Wolverines.
Michigan 38, EMU 17 3:06 in third quarter
HJB: Forcier was writhing in pain on the ground and I think my heart stopped. I might care more about his well-being than mygf’s.
And Robinson just scored…38-17 Michigan.
California 28, Minnesota 21 (5:20 4Q)
Just an attrocious interception from Minnesota QB Adam Weber. He was under pressure, sure, but with one guy at his feet, and one guy hurdling through the air towards his arm, he opted to throw into double-zone coverage….and threw it right to a Cal defensive back.
Now Cal is going for it on fourth down to keep a drive alive…and the QB keeps it and gets it. I’m usually on board with this decision, but with a running back the caliber of Jahvid Best in the backfield, I find the call questionable.
And now a HUGE one handed grab by Anthony Miller that would give the Golden Bears first and goal at the Minnesota 8but it doesn’t look like he had posession. The ruling on the field is a catch, though. And it’s upheld. Which is….interesting…-Paul Schmidt
California 35, Minnesota 21 (FINAL)
The catch that was upheld led to Jahvid Best’s 5th touchdown of the game, and hopefully, his full-fledged candidacy for the Heisman Trophy.
Again, I’m confused by the effort from Adam Weber. He looks so good sometimes, and others looks confused about the game of football. As in, he’s confused about even what it is, and what the strange oval ball is, and what he’s supposed to do with it.
Still, Minnesota looked game against the 8th ranked team in the country, and rallied from a 14-0 deficit to tie the game at 21 in the second half. Not too bad.
Next up, I’ve got Arizona/Iowa on ABC, Florida/Tennessee on CBS, and Utah/Oregon on ESPN. I’ll try to keep everyone abreast of those games. –PS
Iowa 7, Arizona 0 (10:49 left 1Q)
Quick first score for the Hawkeyes, impressively driving down the field. Second time in less than 24 hours, though, that I’ve seen a running back fumble the ball into the end zone and then have someone else on offense recover it for the touchdown.
Although it was overturned on replay (as in, the running back got the ball across the plane), it is still always impressive to see a heads-up play. –PS
Florida 3, Tennessee 0 (11:27 left 1Q)
Quick first drive, but the Vols’ defense really held tight after being put in just a terrible position by their kick coverage.
Now we get to see the GREAT Florida D take on young Mr. Crompton from Tennessee, one week after he couldn’t have looked any shakier against UCLA. He’s already looked a little rattled with the crazy noise. –PS
Florida 3, Tennessee 3 (3:00 left 1Q)
Just a shocking start to the game. The Vols used a methodical, safe drive down the field to tie the game. Jonathon Crompton only threw one pass and they primarily ran it straight down the throats of a STOUT Florida front seven. I loved Tennessee’s line on that opening drive — you could see them working really well as a unit on those running plays, and they did a nice job of containing the pressure up front. –PS
Notre Dame 14, Michigan State 3 (4:59 left 1Q)
If there was possible way for Michigan St. to have a nightmarish first series on offense and defense…I don’t know how that would be possible. At least they’re punter and kicker are good. Sparty’s 2nd series was much better. even though they’re TE dropped a sure TD.
They’re reviewing this TD catch in South Bend, but it looks legit. Clausen is making the MSU secondary his cell mate right now. –Paul Banks
Notre Dame 13, Michigan State 3 (4:59 left 1Q)
Make that 13-3 Golden Douchers, ND committed a penalty on a missed PAT. Obviously State declined it. So at least they’re getting one thing right today. That was a good decision by them…you have to give them credit for something.
I really HATE how NBC home games of ND are always about 15-20% longer than any other broadcast of game on another channel.
I’ve been to one ND game, and I can you tell its even worse in person. Waiting for the game to return from commercial. God NBC sucks. did I just say that? I think I did. –PB
Iowa 7, Arizona 7 (End 1Q)
Ricky Stanzi could not look shakier…he’s constantly under pressure, and is making a ton of ill advised passes, including one for a pick-six.
That’s all well and good, honestly, but when you see stats like, ‘Iowa is outgaining Arizona 102 to 7 after 1 quarter,’ well, let’s just say you don’t expect to see a tie score. I can’t even say if Iowa’s D is playing well, because they’ve been out there for three plays…Arizona hasn’t even passed yet.-PS
13 ND, 3 MSU (2:30 left 1Q)
I will say this however, if State gets any run game going they can get back into this. Because QB Kirk Cousins has a decent weapon in WR Mark Dell. “Dude you’re getting a Dell”. Well actually you already have one. So throw early, throw often to him.
And we have our first reference to the Spartans basketball team in this broadcast already. These are more plentiful, and annoying during Sparty home games. –PB
Florida 10, Tennessee 3
The 46th rushing touchdown for Tim Tebow gives the Gators a 10-3 lead and moves him to second all-time in SEC history behind….well, I’m sure it’s behind someone.
The key to the drive was Tebow and Tennessee all-everything defensive player Eric Berry just absolutely hammering each other and then Florida calling time out and Tebow absolutely REAMING his offense. Seriously. I thought he was going to stroke out. It was kind of exciting. Seriously. –PS
Florida 10, Tennessee 3
Interesting fact that most people probably knew, Tebow trails Herschel Walker by three rushing TDs…but he is tied for second overall in SEC history for rushing touchdowns with….Kevin Faulk. So there ya go.
Florida’s D stepped up on the second UT drive of the game. They brought 8 up into the box to deal with the power running game, and basically said, “OK, Jonathon Crompton, beat us if you can.” On his first opportunity, he couldn’t.
Tebow, however, just threw an apparent interception to none other than Eric Berry, who apparently got his first career interception against Tebow. It was VERY close on replay to whether Berry had control, but there was no good replay to overturn it. And now UT takes over on the Gator 21. –PS
Florida 10, Tennessee 6 (8:04 left 2Q)
Nice stand by the Gators there to hold the Vols to a field goal. The defenses are really hitting hard today.
Since I don’t have much else to say (except for WHY DOES TENNESSEE KEEP KICKING TO BRANDON JAMES????), I’ll turn this one over to Paul Banks:
“My hatred of Tim Tebow reminds me of how TSB’s Peter Christian once described his Drew Neitzel to me: ‘I can do without all his attention-whoring with his running around, screaming and arm flailing.'”
Given that…you don’t like Tebow, Paul? Well…I will let his photos tell the story, I guess… –PS
Notre Dame 13, Michigan St. 10 (9:30 left 2Q)
Sparty (and bear in mind that I’ll use “State” “Sparty” “Michigan State” and “the Spartans” interchangably today), making it a game. Oh, those tricky Spartans. Halfback pass Keyshawn Martin to Blair White for 6. Now trail ND by only 3. –PB
Iowa 14, Arizona 10 (2:50 left 2Q)
There’s good decisions, there’s bad decisions, and then there’s calling for a fake field goal, letting your punter named “Crier” execute that fake field goal, all while trailing by four with almost three full minutes left in the first half.
All that really means is that the Hawkeyes end up with good field position and are already driving to at least put some points on the board before the half.
And, no, it was a makeable field goal, only a 40 yarder. –PS
Florida 13, Tennessee 6 (HALF)
Another stand for the Vols’ D, which has been really impressive and is giving their team a chance to win this game. I’m not feeling really good about my -30 wager. Not one bit.
More from Paul Banks, though:
“Do I hate Tebow that much? I think I’d hate any player in his position- somebody that the Eastern Seaboard Programming Network devotes half their coverage to. And most of that that coverage says to the viewer, ‘If you don’t like this guy, than you are with the terrorists.’ Kind of like what they (and CBS does this too) did to us with Tyler Hansbrough….
….I take that back, I think even Ayman Al-Zawahiri is a fan of Tebow and Hansbrough now. The ESPN/CBS indoctrination worked on them.”
Again…there ya go. –PS
Notre Dame 13, Michigan St. 10 (4:48 left 2Q)
Michigan State and ND trading turnovers now with just under 8 minutes to play in 1st half. –PB
Iowa 14, Arizona 10 (HALF)
The Wildcat defense holds, but were still put in a position where they shouldn’t have to have done that.
This looks like a completely one-sided game, but once again, the reason that the Wildcats are even in the game is because of the shaky play of Ricky Stanzi. This could have been a much less close game at this point, at least 14-3, without Stanzi’s mistakes. –PS
Notre Dame 16, Michigan St. 10 (2:30 left 2Q)
As the NBC announceer just pointed out, Mark Dell did a great job stopping the ND DB from getting a pick-six. See Bears WRs that’s what you need to do and did not do last Sun night in GB. when your QB’s timing and throw is off. COME BACK TO THE BALL, and keep the other team from getting posession. PLEASE.
I think Dell will be playing on Sundays in the near future. –PB
Michigan St. 17, Notre Dame 16 (1:01 left 2Q)
Caper…drives the pile into the end zone for State. Brett Swenson gives MSU the lead 17-16 with a min to go 1st hlaf. ND’s stupid penalties and missed extra pt. are really hurting them now. –PB
Florida 16, Tennessee 6 (7:00 left 3Q)
Just an amazing job by the Tennessee defense again. You HAVE to give them credit, because their offense has not done them any favors all game long.
The pressure they are getting on Tebow is impressive, as well, as he’s had a difficult time finding any comfort in the pocket and has shown great ability to keep him flustered.
However, the Tennessee offense again sputters as they keep digging themselves pretty big holes on offense and don’t trust Crompton enough to let him try to throw his way out of it. Tebow and the Gators are now driving again…-PS
Florida 23, Tennessee 6 (:07 left 3Q)
I may not get the points for my cover, but Florida is putting an old fashioned beatdown on the Vols. One more three-and-out and this one is over.
I gotta ask though, how come when Florida’s RB, Demps, is in the backfield running in place at the time of the snap that’s not a penalty? It seems like that should be illegal motion, because I thought RBs always had to come to a set position…
Additional fun from Paul Banks…”Watching Tennessee versus Jesus now that Touchdown Jesus vs. Sparty is at halftime. I guess Florida covering the spread is not…working out after all? Your picks aren’t too hot lately are they?” Ohhh….we’re talking trash now? Greeeeaaaat. And I haven’t lost this one yet, and I’m doing pretty well today…-PS
Notre Dame 23, Michigan St. 17 (11:00 left 3Q)
Robbie Paris scores for Notre Dame. They’re doing it with the goofy wildcat formation…rar rar rar!
Hey they actually made the pat this time! –PB
USC 10, Washington 10 (3:16 left 3Q)
Watching this one on ESPN360, which I’m declaring the greatest invention ever.
Aaron Corp is not getting the job done for the Trojans, which is exactly what I thought might happen. He was just leading the Trojans on a really nice drive until he threw an awful pick right into the arms of the waiting Husky defender…Also as I predicted, Jake Locker is up to the task of the Trojan D.
Take that, Paul Banks! My picks don’t suck!! –PS
Iowa 20, Arizona 10 (14:57 left 4Q)
Iowa should be dominating this game but they only have two second half field goals to show for long drives.
Arizona has turned to Michigan State transfer QB Nick Foles to try and lead a fourth quarter comeback on the road. Let’s just say this plan isn’t working well for now…-PS
Florida 23, Tennessee 13 (8:01 left 4Q)
EAT MOR CHIKIN! Tennessee forces a Tim Tebow fumble (only the sixth lost fumble of his career) and then promptly drives down and scores, driving a stake through the heart of -30. Also, that was the first TD given up by Florida this season. –PS
USC 10, Washington 10 (10:00 left 4Q)
The Huskies call timeout to deal with 3rd and 21, but are driving and could convert a looong field goal to take the lead. Dare I say it? Sure I do. UPSET ALERT UPSET ALERT!!!
The crowd is getting fired up at Husky Stadium, and this is a crowd that, you can tell, can feel the upset momentum building.
Also, it bears mentioning, is Tyrone Willingham the black Ron Zook? I think a case could be made…-PS
Washington 13, USC 10 (9:51 left 4Q)
In case you missed it…UPSET ALERT UPSET ALERT!!!!
The Huskies couldn’t convert on 3 down but hit the long 46-yard field goal…then proceeded to head over to the sideline, and, as a team, jump up and down to the school fight song. A really, really cool moment.
Barkely was warming up to relieve the….ahem…ineffective Aaron Cort, but Cort remains in the game. –PS
Iowa 27, Arizona 10 (4:40 left 4Q)
Iowa just completed roughly a 30 minute drive for a touchdown…they went all the way down the field with a methodical, old-school drive…and Arizona didn’t stand a chance. This one’s OVAH. –PS
Washington 13, USC 10 (8:43 left 4Q)
Washington just forced a three and out and the Trojans didn’t exactly manage a good punt either, giving the Huskies good field position at their own 37. I would imagine that the Huskies will try to get a couple first downs and just run the clock as much as possible. –PS
USC 13, Washington 13 (4:07 left 4Q)
That’s just how quick it can happen…the Huskies only managed to run 1:20 off the clock before punting, got a great punt but gave up a 35-yard return, then got gashed by Joe McKnight a couple of times. They managed to hold inside the ten, but it was not an awe-inspiring drive.
In case you’re wondering how a team like USC could be losing or tied to Washington, especially while rushing for 250 yards, well you commit 3 turnovers and go 0-for-10 on 3rd down. That’s how. –PS
Notre Dame, Michigan StateWith minutes to go, Michigan State versus Notre Dame is looking like a fantastic finish. I’ll have to take a little break though to post the latest by new contributor Mike Gallagher. (Be sure to read his recap of the Golden battle Cal Golden Bears vs. Golden Gophers)
Also I need to fire up the laptop to get ESPN 360 on to watch my Wildcats. in 20 min. I’ll use one laptop for updating the other to watch Northwestern-Syracuse. And I’ll have to tv on radio on as well. Basically, I’m in THE MATRIX now. –PB
Michigan State 30, Notre Dame 26 (8:49 left 4Q)
Nothing really much to say other than that…I have no idea how the Spartans took the lead, but all my other TV games are done and I’m just watching USC on the comp…I thought you guys would want to know, lol.-PS
USC 13, Washington 13 (:39 left 4Q)
Two HUGE third down conversions on this drive, one a 3rd and 21 where Locker made a beautiful pass for a gain of 21.001 yards and then just now where Locker rolled out on a 3rd and 2, deked the SC defensive backs with a pump fake and got about five yards on the scramble.
Time is running short, and the Huskies have the ball on the Trojan 39 yard line currently. Only one T.O. left, too…they may not be able to get this done in regulation…-PS
Washington 13, USC 13 (:33 left 4Q)
WHAT A PLAY BY LOCKER!! Just a huge play using his feet again on the roll-out, but this time found his receiver in the soft spot in the zone! Tack on a roughing the passer penalty at the end (a little ticky-tacky though) and it’s first-and-goal Huskies!
WASHINGTON 16!!!!!! USC 13 (:04 left 4Q)
I’m not pulling for the Huskies, but I love Seattle and I love Jake Locker, and now I love Husky kicker Eric Folk. Great little chip shot to put the Huskies ahead pending the kickoff.-PS
Washington 16, USC 13 (FINAL)
Wowsa…Appropriate that since this is where the mosh-pit became vogue, that there’s currently one going on on the field. The Husky students and fans deserve it after just a couple miserable seasons.-PS
Notre Dame 33, Michigan State 30 (4:57 left 4Q)
Great stuff after the Irish TD, with Golden Tate swan-diving into the Michigan State band after the score. I didn’t see that one, thanks to my buddy Mark for keeping me up to date…I stroked out a little after that Washington win….
Bad three-and-out by Michigan State after the Notre Dame TD, and now they put their D in the position of getting a stop. Which wouldn’t be that big of a deal except that the Irish seem to have been able to do whatever the heck they want against this Spartan D…-PS
Notre Dame 33, Michigan State 30 (3:58 left 4Q)
Michigan State just had the Irish stuck on third down, but couldn’t tackle Golden Tate. That’s been a problem all game. Now Sparty is left with one time out, the clock running, and a 3rd and 7 to basically stay alive in this game…-PS
Notre Dame 33, Michigan State 30 (2:39 left 4Q)
They hold and here comes Sparty. D’Antoni doesn’t look as completely overmatched and confused as he did earlier in this game, looking like he might know how to run a two-minute offense.
Sparty looks like they want a TD on this drive, as they just crossed midfield with still over 2 minutes left…but even if they don’t get one they just EASILY got into Brett Swenson’s range to tie it up. –PS
Notre Dame 33, Michigan State 30 (FINAL)
Oh wow…what an ill advised pass by Kirk Cousins. He just threw a ball off his back foot…across his body….right into the hands of safety Kyle McCarthy. This one play after overthrowing the game winning touchdown. And don’t ever forget that MSU has one of the country’s best kickers…which brings up the question…
Why not eat the football? Just take the sack and head to OT? Just a terrible decision by a kid who is gonna have a lot to think about after this game. –PS
Notre Dame 33, Michigan State 30 (FINAL)
My analysis was just that…professional. Now we’ll let the fan, Paul Banks, talk about Sparty:
“Kirk Cousins….whhhaaaaaatttttt, on over-throwing the WIIIIIDEEEE OPEN receiver.
And then throwing across your body on the run, into the open field?? WHYYYYYYYYYY
That’s quarterbacking 101!!!! How can you make amateurish errors like this?
And the game turns on exactly two places, and the dream is over for Sparty.”
I think Paul B.’s gonna be ok….And that’s it for this thread!! Come on over to our live blog Part 2, at the top of the page where we’ll be following Northwestern/Syracuse, Texas Tech/Texas and Arkansas/Georgia, to name but a few games! –PS