Football starts to-morrow!
So ya gotta hang on
Come what may
I love ya
The season starts to-morrow
I love ya to-morrow
You're only a day away!
And yes, I did just alter the closing chorus of a song from Annie to depict my excitement. And yes, it very well may be the first time college football and the little red-headed orphan has come together in such a wonderful unison. For that reason – along with my schoolgirl-like giddiness – I make no apologies.
As was somewhat expected, the games last night were mildly disappointing, aside from Stanford/Oregon State. Baylor still sucks. But NC State may be worse. And Iowa State did their best USC impression (at least from a uniform standpoint) against the always gritty South Dakota State. In short, we didn't find out a whole lot. But it sure did feel good to be watching college football again. So you can imagine my excitement for an actual college football Saturday, culminating with a Kansas win.
About that Kansas win, I think it will come pretty easily. So easily, in fact, that I think they'll win by the third biggest margin in the conference (Tech and OU by more), somewhere in the vicinity of 40 points (spread has moved down to 35.5). Per the poll, it seems that Jake Sharp (my vote also) is the most likely to score the first touchdown. But then again, everyone has received at least one vote so I wouldn't go laying any money down just yet. Since this game really has no business being close much past the first quarter and we can't give you any more insight than Pete Pelegrin, I would say that you should instead watch for a few things from Kansas.
#1 – The Tackles. Offensive and defensive. Taking nothing away from the other pieces the team lost, but if the offensive tackles can play well, this offense will be every bit what it was a year ago, if not more. Defensively, watch to see how many blockers they're occupying. This is likely to be the worst offensive line the team sees all year, so if the d-tackles can't get a push on them, we probably shouldn't expect much of a push against Oklahoma (or anyone else).
# 2 – The Ends. Offensive and Defensive. Offensively, I think they'll be fine from a pass catching perspective. But watch to see how they block. I don't think we can reasonably expect either to equal Derek Fine, but there's no reason we should count on them to at least provide good edge help for the tackles. Defensively, watch to see if any of them can get to the quarterback. And watch Wheeler, Laptad and Onyegbule to see if they also maintain their position against the run.
# 3 – Enjoy. In a game like this, the domination should be in the trenches. If the line can't dominate FIU, troubles are on the way. If they can, the skill players will take care of the rest. Kicking game aside, I worry about little else on this team other than points 1 & 2. Don't expect anything flavored tomorrow, but that aside there's no excuse for not man-handling this team and I fully expect the Hawks to come out and do just that. Let's say…
KU 52 FIU 7
p.s. Good piece in the Journal today about college coaching salaries.
p.s.s. I'm sorry for wasting your time with this pointless drivel when i could have just linked this from the beginning, because it's probably the best college football preview I've ever read. And now I am even more excited for to-morrow!