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The Good, Bad and Ugly of the college football weekend

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Opening week did not lack for drama.

NCAA Football: UL Lafayette at Iowa State Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, and a hearty “welcome back” to college football! Yeah, there were a few games last week, but Saturday brought us the first day-long slate of games involving Power Five teams, most of which took on Group of Five teams before starting their conference-only schedule. Now, when I say “Power Five” I’m clearly referring to the Sun Belt as one of those leagues, as Sun Belt teams had relatively little trouble with their G5 opponents from the Big 12.

The only Sun Belt school that struggled for a bit was the Arkansas State Red Wolves. In a classic case of overlooking an inferior opponent from a lesser conference, the Wolves let the Kansas State Wildcats out to a 21-7 lead before they woke up and scored late to win. Things weren’t nearly as difficult for the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns and Coastal Carolina Chanticleers. The Cajuns stormed into Ames, Iowa and used their superior speed on special teams to thump the somehow once again overrated Iowa State Cyclones, 31-14. Then in the nightcap, facing Coastal Carolina for the second straight season, the perennial doormat Kansas Jayhawks once again showed why they belong in NAIA, as they were on the wrong end of the American History X scene for what seems like the 100th consecutive time.

But enough about the Sun Belt’s dominance, let’s check in on your new era of Florida State Seminoles football!

Surely the Seminoles came back to win. More on that in a bit.

The Good

  • Special Teams

Yep, that was the second kick/punt return score for the Cajuns. Meanwhile, in San Marcos...

  • Ok look, I’m as tired of the whole “turnover (insert prop here)” as the rest of you, but let’s take a step back and recognize the Einsteinian level of genius that led to the Turn-o-fur.

PETA has already threatened to boycott Chanticleer athletics for eternity.

  • No idea who this dude is but he’s my new favorite player.
  • It was pretty great to wake up to Tim Brando and Spencer Tillman calling a late game.
  • How about true freshman Jeff Sims! Committed to Florida State, but was told to look elsewhere when Mike Norvell took over. So he ended up signing with the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, and promptly went in to Doak Campbell Stadium and beat the Seminoles in his first ever college start. Now that’s some payback.
  • New year, same old Clemson Tigers. That’s a good thing if you’re a fan of theirs.
  • I’m glad one-time WSU commit Ian Book is finding success at Notre Dame, but I’m also not sad that he ended up there and not Pullman. Doesn’t move the needle at all.
  • The nation’s only 2-0 team? That honor belongs to your Army Black Knights, who have outscored their first two opponents 79-7. That’s decent, I guess.
  • I know it was only Missouri State, where Bobby Petrino hasn’t pissed off enough people to be canned yet, but new Sooner quarterback Spencer Rattler could be the real deal.

The Bad

  • Special Teams!

That punt return you saw above? Here’s what happened next.

Let’s go to Tallahassee, where the Ramblin’ Wreck is an extra point away from taking the lead!

Yeesh.

  • As much fun as Saturday was, from the Sun Belt upsets to the madness in San Marcos to Florida State getting embarrassed again, it also provided a glimpse of the speed bumps this season is going to bring.

The Memphis Tigers - Houston Cougars game fell victim to a...party bus??? The good news is that Houston quickly rescheduled a game with the Baylor Bears.

Oh, and then there was this:

If you’re scoring at home, or even if you’re by yourself (h/t Keith Olbermann), that’s 33 (!!!) inactive players. I mean, what?! Despite missing almost half the team, the Georgia Southern Eagles were able to stave off an upset bid by the Fightin’ Camels of Campbell, 27-26.

Maintaining doubly-crossed fingers for a full season.

  • The last decade of Kansas Football, summed up by the left tackle.
  • Yeah, I know they won, but the Texas Tech Red Raiders could be in for a long season, seeing as how they need a late 2-point conversion stop to beat something called Houston Baptist. To save you the time, Houston Baptist football did not exist in 2012, and has an overall record of 18-57 as an FCS team.

The Ugly

SPECIAL. TEAMS.

That poor punter’s name is Matt Campbell, who is also Iowa State’s coach and is also the name of the school that lost to half of Georgia Southern’s team and oh yeah FSU’s stadium is named after Doak Campbell. Not a good day for Campbells on the field! Speaking of Doak, let’s check back in to see if the two-touchdown favorite ‘Noles came back to beat the lowly Jackets.

Welp.

Football

Washington State mailbag: Analyzing Washington State's situation at outside receiver in the wake of recent transfers | The Spokesman-Review
In a normal year, we might be passing this time discussing things like the depth at wide receiver. This isn’t a normal year, of course, but who says we can’t still talk about the depth at wide receiver?

College football top 25 scores, overreactions in Week 2: Florida State still a mess, Sun Belt creates chaos - CBSSports.com
Let's get wild with the biggest takeaways from Week 2.

This Week in Parenting

We were about 45 minutes from home last Monday, driving through some uninhabited back roads, when yours truly had to make a pit stop. So I pulled into an unpaved turnout, and exited the car. The eight year-old decided that he had to go, too. So there I was, taking care of my business, when the kid decided to commit that boyhood rite of passage by attempting to arc one as far into the woods as he could. “Hey dad, check this out! That’s like 10 feet! Why aren’t you doing this?!” I responded that there are many reasons, but mostly that I’d been there, done that. As soon as we got back to the car, he couldn’t stop bragging to mom and brother about how he outdistanced dad. For you women in the audience, this is just something that every boy is inexplicably born to try, so don’t bother trying to apply logic.

Later in the week, Mrs. Kendall made some spinach spätzle to accompany our grilled chicken. The boys liked it well enough, and I remarked that Popeye would have been a big fan of it as well. “Who is Popeye?” Moving right along.

Finally, we were watching something on TV near bed time when the boys’ tablets shut off at 8pm, per parental control rules on my Google Family Link app. The eight year-old then set about guessing dad’s password, in order to enable further usage. I think it took him 90 seconds to figure it out. So changing my password on all of my Google-related accounts was a fun thing to do after they went to bed.

Beer

Best beer I had this week: Easy

The craft beer industry would like you to lobby Congress on its behalf, please and thank you While drinking alcohol has become a frequent pastime for many pandemic-impacted Americans, breweries, wineries, and distilleries are all feeling the pain of diminished sales and closed tasting rooms.

Non-Sports

23 years ago, the state of Alaska tried the wrong man for the murder of a Sitka teenager. Now police say they’ve found the real killer. Why wasn’t he a suspect all along? - Anchorage Daily News
The killing of Jessica Baggen, a vivacious 17-year-old daughter of a respected local family, became one of the most notorious crimes in recent Sitka history.