4/15/12

kispalád

blogablogaBLOGablogablog
it's been a while since i've said anything of note
[note being me not posting lyrics]
and now seems as good a time as any
why? because b1g spring football kicked off this weekend
[except at purdue, who cancelled due to potential death storms]
and since there aren't any enjoyable sports until august,
i need to fill the athletic void somehow

thankfully, i needn't look far,
because the the 2012 schedules b1g schedules have been released
which means now that i've had a chance to look through all of them,
it's time to scope out which matchups will be best WAY too early
for the sake of organization, we'll go week by weekare you ready for this shit?
ARE you READYfor THIS SHIT?!
goddamn right you are. let's get to it


week 1:
msu v. boise state
quick poll: can the b1g season start out any better than this game?
quick answer: no way, no how
here we have a matchup of two teams that ended 2011 in the top 10,
one is the perennial bcs at–large team that takes down an aq team every single year,
the other is the defending division champ with back-to-back 11 win seasons
both teams are starting new kids at key positions [qb/rb/wr/safety],
and both are looking to start the season with a quality win over a ranked opponent
and best of all, the game is nationally televised on a friday from spartan stadium
whether you love or hate msu, you will be watching this game
you know you will

michigan v. alabama
we can be sure that, of all the things michigan was planning on when they scheduled this,
they weren't planning on facing an alabama squad fresh of a national championship
beyond the fact that this is a special opening week game [the cowboys classic],
which means that a ton of people will be watching,
this is the perfect statement game for both of these teams:
it could be michigan's unequivocal announcement that they are 'back',
knocking off an sec powerhouse in the process,
or bama's opportunity to beat yet another b1g team,
and in so doing defend their championship in the biggest of ways
both conferences proclaim to be the best in college football,
so what better way to determine it than a head to head?

week 2:
illinois @ arizona state
some of you may think i put this game here to be a cynical bastard,
and you'd be right
illinois is fresh of being the first team to star 6–0 and finish 0–6,
as well as completely overhauling their coaching staff
the sun devils are fresh off completely imploding down the stretch,
and losing their division to the first ever 6–8 team, ucla
last year, the teams were rather evenly matched
[basically being the same team in two different conferences]
and the rematch in tempe will be a good gauge of how each is restarting
plus, since the b1g/pac12 non–con matchups don't start till 2017,
this is all we get to look forward to until the rose bowl

iowa v. iowa state
the cyhawk trophy is one of the better non–con b1g trophy games
[regardless of what the trophy itself will look like],
and no self–respecting football fan misses out on a good, intrastate football rivalry
especially since, after 3 straight losses where they failed to score more than 7 points,
iowa state beat the piss out iowa last year at home
so you can be sure iowa will be out for blood this year in iowa city

penn state @ virginia
this one seems like kind of a longshot, but i'd put money on it being a great game
penn state, as we all know, is in complete transition from the joepa era,
and everyone's gonna be all over bill o'brian to start off the season well
meanwhile, virginia put together one of the better seasons in the acc last year
and was playing [but lost] for the chance to face clemson in the title game
they may have ended the season with a thud [19 point loss to auburn],
but i'd bet they'll be at least as good this year as last
which means penn state will probly have its hands full when it goes to charlottesville

week 3:
msu v. notre dame
does this one even need an explanation?
msu/notre dame has been one of the best b1g rivalries in the past 10 years
and with both teams striving to be nationally elite,
this game has huge implications for the rest of both teams' seasons
so you better believe spartan stadium will be packed for this game

nebraska v. arkansas state
this game ought to be very interesting
arkansas state won its first conference championship last year,
their new head coach is the o/c from auburn [the same guy who coached cam newton],
and nebraska's non–con schedule is otherwise very soft
this game may be in lincoln, but i think it'll be a tough game for the huskers to pull off

week 4:
michigan @ notre dame 
again, is this really worthy of a full explanation?
notre dame's other rivalry against the state of michigan is usually a good game,
and michigan will be hard pressed to follow up their home performance last year
if they manage to beat both alabama and notre dame in september,
i imagine they'd find themselves ranked in the top 5

week 5:
iowa v. minnesota
this is another game that initially may not seem like a good one,
but considering how this game played out last year,
i expect as good of a show this time around
minnesota's beaten iowa twice in a row,
something that that hasn't happened in a dozen years
this game is suddenly falling under the 'inexplicable loss' category for iowa
which means it might be fun to watch the hawkeyes get flustered yet again

ohio state @ msu
i might as well just start listing every msu game now,
since it's only week 5 and i've already listed 3 of them
but there's no doubt in my mind that this game will be incredible
last year's was a defensive show case with 59 minutes of rather plodding play,
[with 1 minute of excitement near the end]
but this year will be better for two reasons:
msu hasn't lost at home since 2009
and this will be ohio state's first b1g game with urban meyer
if there's really any team that has the capability to beat msu in e/l, it's ohio state
BUT, with mr. egotistical at the helm of the buckeyes now,
replete with spread offense and unabashed indifference to rules,
ohio state should get a pretty good spanking to start off the b1g schedule,
not unlike nebraska's opener last year at wiscy

wisconsin v. nebraska
speaking of nebraska and wisconsin,
they both kick off their respective seasons against each other again this year
though this time they'll be playing in lincoln
wisconsin's got themselves a new acc qb in danny o'brian,
marking this their third starting qb in as many years,
while nebraska's chomping at the bit to be competitive in the b1g title race
plus, after last october's 31-point loss,
i can only imagine that the huskers wish to return the favor

week 6:
msu v. indiana
hah, just kidding, this game will be a total blowout

nebraska @ ohio state
considering that very few b1g fans actually like the buckeyes,
and that urban meyer is the coach now,
i bet this game will get tons of interest from non–husker fans,
specifically hoping they beat the piss out of ohio state at the shoe
and considering how competitive last year's game was,
i bet this one will be just as good

week 7:
iowa @ msu
week 7 and it's already the fourth msu game
but whatcha gon' do?
iowa and msu have been rather evenly matched of late
[in terms of talent and playing style, at least],
and this promises to be yet another smash–mouth game of b1g football
and who would want to miss that?

week 8:
penn state @ iowa
ah yes, iowa, bane of nittany lions' fans for two decades
how much of a bane, you may ask?
penn state has only won in iowa city only thrice since joining the b1g [out of 7 tries]
and only a grand total of ONCE since 1995
their games are usually good and close,
and this one should be especially enticing what with all the coaching changes:
penn state having an entirely new staff, iowa having a new o/c and d/c
plus, it's penn state, and you should ALWAYS watch penn state play

michigan v. msu
and there it is, the paul bunyan trophy
paul's been in e/l long enough to get an undergrad degree,
after having been at michigan long enough to get a master's
this game is a bit later in october than it has been in recent years
[the last three being held on october 15, 9, and 3, respectively]
but that should have no bearing on quality
while i wouldn't bet on either team being undefeated by the time this game is played
[each is likely going to play 3 ranked opponents before week 8],
i would bet on it being one of the best games of the season
why? michigan hasn't beaten msu at the big house since 2006
which is flat out embarrassing

nebraska @ northwestern
we all know that northwestern's made a habit of pulling a big upset every year
it seems to be pat fitzgerald's specialty
last year's was nebraska, which was confounding as it was funny
i want to see these two play again simply to see if the wildcats can do it again
welcome to the b1g, nebraska, northwestern is our iowa state

purdue v. ohio state
this one, you may remember, falls under the 'house of horrors' heading,
because the buckeyes have had some tremendous failures in west lafayette
and we all like seeing ohio state inexplicably lose, yes?
so even though most purdue games tend to fall on the 'meh' end of the scale,
this one will certainly be worth watching

week 9:
iowa @ northwestern
and speaking of inexplicable losses to inferior opponents
['inexplicable' repetition meter: 4 times],
iowa and northwestern really typifies this problem for b1g teams
i think will simply be a fun game to watch,
because spoilers are ALWAYS fun to watch [unless they're happening to you]
also, for the record, i'm calling this as northwestern's yearly spoiler game
hear me now, believe me late

nebraska v. michigan
this game is michigan's first real road game of the season
[purdue doesn't count because michigan isn't the buckeyes],
and it should be a doozy
michigan, msu, and nebraska are all variously expected to win the legends,
and this game will go a long way in establishing who does win it
last year, michigan's win over the huskers gave msu the division championship,
so there's little reason to think it won't matter again

wisconsin v. msu
this will be the first time since 2009 that msu travels to camp randall,
a place no b1g has won since iowa two weeks after the above mentioned game 
[wiscy holds the longest b1g home winning streak at 10,
followed by msu at 8 and michigan at 4]
given the intensity of the last five matchups between these teams,
culminating in last year's two insanely watchable games,
you can be damn sure this one will be just as good

ohio state @ penn state
this game is the leaders division's version of nebraska/michigan
even though wisconsin is going to be favored win leaders again,
osu and penn state are gonna be right there challenging for it,
so it naturally holds that this game will go a long way to determining who wins it
plus, with both teams getting completely new staffs this season,
it'll be a good barometer for how far they've come

week 10:
nebraska @ msu
another one? why not
this week's actually kinda starved for good matchups,
what with um/minnesota, iowa/indiana, osu/illinois, and psu/purdue being the others
so this one stands out because, again, it will mean a lot in the legends division race
plus, nebraska is the last remaining b1g opponent a dantonio team hasn't beaten,
so you can be sure they'll try to make it a reality

week 11:
penn state @ nebraska
another lone standout against a week of 'meh' games,
this one ought to be fantastic
in fact, i'm not even gonna bother selling you on it
if you aren't already compelled to watch either penn state or nebraska play football,
then i really want nothing to do with you

week 12:
michigan v. iowa
i put this game on the list for a very specific reason:
iowa is currently riding it's longest win streak over michigan EVER
michigan state's streak over michigan gets more press,
but this one is just as impressive
iowa's never won twice in a row in ann arbor,
brady hoke's team has yet to lose at home
something's gotta give, yeah?

ohio state @ wisconsin 
this game, not unlike msu/michigan, will probly determine the leaders division winner
ohio state usually comes into this game heavily favored,
but we all remember the last time the buckeyes went to camp randall, don't we?
the long and short of it is that this game is gonna be hard fought,
will likely go down to the wire, and is probly gonna be awesome
and who would want to miss a game like that?

week 13:
iowa v. nebraska
i was a huge fan of this game when it was announced as a series,
and i continue to be to this day
granted, last year's game was a rather underwhelming start,
but this has all the makings of a great rivalry
and, really, what better way is there to spend the day after thanksgiving?

michigan @ ohio state
last year, this game finally got a shot in the arm as far as watchability,
when michigan beat the buckeyes for the first time in 8 tries
who was on the last team that beat ohio state for michigan, you might [not] ask?
john navarre, braylon edwards, chris perry, david bass, and lloyd carr
yeah, it'd been a while
now the wolverines have to go to columbus to prove it wasn't a fluke
this is a game you should watch regardless,
but now you have even less of an excuse

penn state v. wisconsin
you really couldn't ask for a better b1g season wrap up
these teams have been phenomenal the past few years,
and last year this game decided who would represent the leaders in the ccg
[i know, wiscy won in a blowout, but that wasn't the point]
and i'm positive it will be the deciding factor again this year


tl;dr: watch ALL the games

2 comments:

nocenslupus said...

"if you aren't already compelled to watch either penn state or nebraska play football,
then i really want nothing to do with you"

Listen, a grudging respect for Nebraska's game? I can (and have always been able to) get behind that. But I remember someone who willingly joined me in hating the Huskers last season. Respect is one thing, but if you've suddenly started secretly rooting for their asses or some such similar nonsense...

I will be disappointed in you for SO MANY REASONS.

nocenslupus said...

Then again, seeing as I'm not "compelled" to watch anyone beyond MSU play (not that I won't watch others or don't enjoy it, just that there's no real driving need to do so), I suppose our association is at an end.

It's been fun, boyo.

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