Nit Picks

Everyone seems to have their little football preview pointless pot-pouris that runs before each week, and since I have a blogger account and a job where I have to sit at a desk and do next to nothing, I figured I would get in on the action.  For no reason whatsoever, here are 10 mini-rants about football, followed by 10 bets for the upcoming weekend.  I will offer little or no evidence, do my best not to look anything up, and definitely won’t respond if you attempt to refute anything I say.   Because my word is gospel.  And I’m a busy guy.  Wait, no, I work less than 20 hours a week, and don’t even have class 4 days a week.  I’m not busy.  What is that other thing…the one that I am…lazy.  That’s it.  I’m lazy.  Deal with it. 
(As for the bets, if you haven’t heard, and don’t like it, gambling is legal now.  It can be done, in a way that isn’t punishable, criminally or otherwise, through sites that are registered with the national govenrmnent.  Sure, it is the national government of Costa Rica, but let’s not get hung up on semantics.  Because gambling is awesome.  I’m watching a football game.  I shouldn’t care.  But I have money on it.  Now I care.  Gambling is like a ‘make-me-give-a-s*** pill.  Which is awesome.  Unless I lose, then gambling sucks.)
1. Mike Singletary sucks.  He has a losing record.  Every damn year all we here about is how the Niners are the breakout team in the NFL, and usually, it seems to make sense.  I have to live out here with all these 49er fans (technically, I’m split between 49er and Raider territory, but I’m at a private school, and every rich kid from the East Bay likes to think that they are from San Francisco, so as a result I know like 2 Raiders fans), and as much as I like some of them, I have this message:  you people are morons.  OOOOHHH he won’t accept excuses!  What a revolutionary!  He dropped his pants in the locker room!  He cares so much!  You know who else cares, and won’t accept excuses?  Bill Belicheck.  Or Sean Payton.  Or every other coach in the league.  Except they don’t have 13-14 career records with talented rosters, so we have other stuff to talk about.  Why does everyone make excuses for this guy?  Is it because he was in the Super Bowl Shuffle?  It must be because he was in the Super Bowl Shuffle.  This is what happens when you never have to deal with snow.  You make excuses for bad football coaches (that’s just good science).
2. So Mike Vick has won the quarterback struggle in Philly.  It was a tough one though.  A real scrappy battle.  If only there was a term to describe something that was drawn out, scrappy, and a tough, even battle where it just came down to who kept fighting harder.  Maybe something that made it seem like a battle between a bunch of fighter jets.  If only such a term existed.  I would use that one.   And by the way, shouldn’t Andy Reid just have been fired for the way he handled this whole thing?  I know that he is like the third longest tenured coach in the league, that he ultimately got the decision right, and that this sounds like ‘The 10 Coaches I want Fired’ so far (and it is going to continue to sound that way, for the record, because most football coaches suck), but would anyone have not understood if they had fired him and put out a statement saying ‘the wives of every member of the front office knew that Vick should be starting immediately after the Detroit game, if not before.  It took Andy Reid like 4 days to figure it out.  Clearly, he has lost it.’  All I really know is that there was no way I was watching the Eagles this weekend with Kevin Kolb, but I will be watching them with Mike Vick.
3. Continuing wit the theme of ‘Jackson rails against people keeping harder jobs than he will likely ever have,’ Wade Phillips has to go.  All I can think about when I watch the Cowboys is how poorly run their offense is.  The play calling is uncreative, they never adjust to what the defense is doing, and thy thoroughly waste the most offensive talent in football.  This team looks like it is coaching itself, and with a three page playbook.  AND DON’T YOU TRY TO WALK AWAY JASON GARRETT.  COME BACK HERE.  This is your fault too.  I blame Wade for the team looking like they had been listening to Ryan Adams CDs and lighting scented candles for three hours leading up to game time, but the play calling is on you, ‘wunderkind.’
4. You should only be allowed to have dreads like that if you are a defensive back, Denard Robinson.  Sorry.  It looks badass if you are lighting up receivers or returning punts, but I can’t take a quarterback seriously if he looks like Lil’ Wayne.  I feel the same way about long hair on white dudes, too, although Tom Brady sort of gets a pass because of, you know, the rings.  So, uh, get a haircut, I guess.
5. Yeah, right, Oregon State.  Signed, the state of Idaho. 
You look foolish.
6. Why can’t Hard Knocks just be extended through the entire season?  Who wouldn’t enjoy this (other than maybe the subject of the show)?  I am having Rex Ryan  withdrawals.  I need to see someone running up and down a sideline screaming ‘what a f***ing hit’ while technically at work.  I need to know how they are reacting to Revis being hurt.  And the Braylon Edwards DUI.  For those six weeks, the Jets were family.  And now they are just gone?  I can’t take the loss. 
7.  Dear ESPN,
Regarding your halftime montage of Oregon State upsets throughout the years, used to promote the game that they are sending Corso and Co to on Saturday:  Go Eff Yourself.  I really don’t have much to add here, but seriously, I really don’t want to even start thinking about that.  Anyways, those were all in Corvalis.  We don’t lose on THE BLUE, expensive, attention grabbing practice gimmicks aside. 
Signed,
Jack
8. Bama should be the clear cut favorite in college football this year.  Their team returns most of the core of a National Champion, and ohbytheway there quarterback has never lost a start (literally.  Not one.  It is ridiculous.  Look it up, I’ll wait….it’s spelled M-C-E-L-R-O-Y…(checking watch)…back?  How is that even possible).  On the other hand, their D looks a little bit shaky.  I have watched more or less every game that they have played the past couple of years, and this unit doesn’t look like the one that shut down Tebow in the SEC championship game.  Ryan Mallet, on the other hand, hahs both lost a start in his career, and looks better than last year.  I don’t think that Alabama is going down to Arkansas, but it is going to be a hell of a game.
9.  I’m over the Wildcat.  As I said, I don’t have any stats to back this up, but it seems to me that the upside to this situation, now that teams have started game planning for it, is a 5-6 yard run off tackle.  More often than not, it seems like it doesn’t go anywhere.  The advantage is that you have one more blocker (you aren’t wasting the QB position, like on traditional runs), but a dual threat QB is much more effective.  More importantly, though (actually less importantly but bear with me), if I hear wild- put in front of a team’s nickname one more time, I will projectile vomit all over the television I am watching.  I’m not even kidding (well I mean I am, but again, bear with me).  When I heard the words ‘Wild-Bronco’ last weekend, I actually felt sick to my stomach.  Talk about sounding foolish.
10. So let me get this straight, Chik-Fil-a.  I am supposed to believe that Cows have mastered the ability to communicate, create signs that are intelligible to English speakers, and understand the concept that eating more chicken will lead to less cows being slaughtered.  Fine, it is a stretch, but no more so than plenty of other commercials.  At the same time, though, I am supposed to believe that they stopped short of learning to spell words like ‘is’ (‘iz’), ‘more’ (‘mor’) and most importantly, ‘chicken’ which is the focul point of their assult like campaign on the eating habits of America.  Screw you, Chik-Fil-A, for trying to make me dumber.
(And if you’re wondering what this has to do with football, they run those asinine adds 529 times durnign the typical SEC game)
PICKS
Boise State -18.5 over Oregon State
18.5 is a lot of points, especially against a Pac-10 team, but I have faith in the Broncos to blow this out.  The Bronco defense has been strong, and there is no way that Kellen Moore and company put up less than 5 touchdowns.  The Broncos have shut down Evans already this year, in DC, and should be able to keep Jaquizz and the Beavers under the 20 or so that would be necessary for a cover.  Take the Broncos on the Blue, give the points.
(That is a homer pick, for sure, I should admit.  Honestly, my reaction to that line, and particularly the -1000 money line is that it is freaking huge.  That isn’t to say that they won’t both come through, just that I am surprised that, again, a top 25 team is giving up that much.  Boise bandwagon effect, maybe?)
UCLA +16 over Texas
So we are saying Garrett Gilbert is good?  Because I’m not sure he is good.  I’m not saying he is bad, only that I have no reason to think he is good.  Shouldn’t he have to have one good game before we give him 16 points in a system that relies on stud quarterbacks?  The Horns probably win this game, but 16 is too much for a team that hasn’t shown much.
Auburn -3 over South Carolina
Auburn played badly last week, SC played well (enough, I guess).  It seems like this line throws out pretty much everything that we thought we knew about these teams.
Western Kentucky +27 over South Florida
Remember that time that the USF quarterback got all pissed because he didn’t get royalties with jerseys that had his number on them?  You don’t?  Oh, well, anyways, there isn’t a team in the country (or Canada) that should be giving 27 points to USfreakingF.  Free money.
Georgia -1 over Missisippi State
I know Georgia looks like crap so far, but this team has some talent.  This one looks like another overreaction line in the SEC. 
BYU +160 over Nevada
I would like to see Nevada pull this one out because of the infinitesimally small amount that it would help Boise for the WAC to look that much stronger, and they well could, but +160 is a great bet for teams that, to me, seem to be pretty even on paper.  Take the money line rather than the spread, since so few games finish within the 4 you would get, and going from -110 to +160 is a huge upgrade.
Bengals -3 over Panthers
The Bengals are obviously a team that shouldn’t be huge favorites over anyone, but they definitely have talent.  Carolina, on the other hand, appears to be in complete disarray.  Questions about Carson Palmer are swirling, but they beat the questions about whatever the hell the Panthers are going to do at the QB position.  This is at least a 7 point game.
Cowboys +115 over Texans
The Boys are in disarray, but they are still talented, and now they are desperate.  They should be anyways.  I will take +115 odds that they know what this game means for them.  (And for what it’s worth, it has been the offense that has been the problem.  If you knew that the Dallas D would hold, you would take them to go at least 11-5, no?  I think they bounce back).
Jets-Dolphins Under 35 ½
Where exactly are points coming from here?  Mark Sanchise?  Chad Henne?  Come on.  For what it’s worth, I like the Jets under pretty much every week.

Hitting the Links; 9/9/10

The links are back.  That should do for an intro.   Let’s get after it.

1. Sidney Taking BP.

Sticking with the theme of hockey/baseball crossover from last week, here is a clip of Sidney Crosby taking batting practice at PNC park.  Two words: Yard. Work.  This is a shot.  (For what it’s worth, this got spread around pretty well in the day or so since it went up.  I was hoping I could be one of the first, but thats what I get for waiting.  Oh well.)

2. Puck Daddy- Header Goal

I joked here that Louie Ericksson had pulled off a nice header to send the game into overtime.  This kid makes him look bad.

3. Pierre McGuire Drinking Game

For readers over 21 years of age, or 19 in Canada only: With the hockey season coming up, you are probably asking yourself, ‘how can I drink way more than is healthy, in a game like manner, while I am watching TSN or NBC?’  As with most questions, the answer is on Facebook.

4. Brad Miller Time

From the ‘my new favorite thing in the world’ file, this is a show put together by a couple of guys on the North Dakota hockey team, and it is hilarious.  The linked episode contains Matt Greene of the Los Angeles Kings, and is probably the highlight, but if you have some time to kill, all of the episodes are worth the 8-10 minutes they take to watch.  A complete list is available here.

5. Jordan / Gretzky story

I am with Katie Baker in fearing for The Great One’s health.  A crazy story.

6. ESPN Tribute

Moving away from hockey now. via Deadspin, here is a collection of outtakes, tributes and ‘This is Sportscenter’ commercials as a tribute for ESPN’s 31st birthday.

7. Peter King’s Season Preview

King is probably the best writer/reporter combo working the NFL right now.  After Hard Knocks, his columns are probably about as ‘insider’ as you can get.

8. Highlights from Monday Night

If you aren’t interested in Boise State Football, you can probably stop reading right now.  This is a playlist of videos from one of the best football games I have seen in a while on Monday night (a column on the subject is in the works, and, admittedly, overdue).

(The first video is the game winning drive, shot from the stands, the second is a shot of the outstanding FedEx Field crowd, the third the actual game highlights, and the last one is the video of the Broncos taking the field in Boise, which has nothing to do with the Virginia Tech game, but is freaking badass.)

9. Heisman Watch- SI

Oh, look who is number one!  Moore didn;t actually have an outstanding game against Tech, but the last drive turned heads.  Hopefully he will stay in the race now that the Broncos will move out of the spotlight for a few weeks.

10. Deadspin on Boise

Finally, debbie downer chimes in, telling people like me to shut up about our little win, and laments the fact that this is our only test.  Unfortunately he does a good job of it and raises some good points.  Oh well.  I’m still fired up.

________________________________________

Bonus. A Small Tribute

I don’t want to get overly preachy, heavy or sentimental, but Saturday is the 9th anniversary of 9/11, and it is worth taking a few minutes to remember and appreciate the sacrifices made and the efforts given to our country on that day.
(And to celebrate patriotism, which is what we should feel on these anniversaries, in my opinion, and just to make sure people don’t accidentally start taking me seriously, here is a list of America based videos one of which comes from a movie with puppets.)

Fired Up for A New Game

The Uniforms aren’t all that have changed for the Broncos

Eastern Seaboard:  Be on high alert.  There is a severe storm warning that is in effect this weekend, and extreme caution should be exercised.
Earl?  What is Earl?

IM TALKIN BOUT HURRICANE JERON JOHNSON BABY.  IT’S A CATEGORY 23 STORM AND ITS MAKING LANDFALL IN THE DC AREA MONDAY NIGHT SON.  ARR, ARR!  THE KID FROM COMPTON IS LAYING THE HAMMER AND THE BIG BLUE ARE BRINGING THE PAIN TO THE HOKIES BABY!  MONDAY NIGHT!  MONDAY  NIGHT!  WASHINGTON DC BECOMES THE CAPITAL OF BRONCO NATION!  IT’S A BIG BLUE STORM, VA TECH BEST TAKE COVER SON!  AAAHAHAHA WOOOOOOOHHHHHHHH!

(Hold on, I have to hit something…)
(…and we’re back.)
Having made that particular point, let’s take an objective look at the Boise State-Virginia Tech showdown on Monday night that highlights the opening week slate of college football. 
So, the pertinent question to any Boise State fan is pretty simple.  Is this the next biggest game in big blue history? 
Now, for the last few years, for the major games that the Broncos have been involved in (the Fiesta Bowl last year, the Oregon game last year and the game in Eugene the year before), there has been a lot of talk about the ‘biggest in Boise State history.’  When these whisperings have been floating around, I have been of the mind that it was going to be impossible to top the original, since the Oklahoma game was not only the first big game, but also the one that was in a bowl, rather than early in the year. 
This one might be, and I’ll get to that in a second, but first some credit is due.  And that credit is to Virginia Tech.  And that is because they don’t really have to be there.  Boise State needs this game.  Even with a preseason number three ranking, the Broncos need wins that stick out.  Virginia Tech, on the other hand, has no such motivation.  Let’s face it, failing an absolute mess at the top, an undefeated season in the ACC, even with the conference down, would be good to get them into the National Championship.  Boise’s reputation has evolved to be such that a win will help them a lot, but they don’t need this game like Boise does, so they deserve credit for playing it.
Boise, on the other hand, needs this game, and that is why the title, “next biggest game” fits this one for big blue.  The fact is, the stakes have changed in Boise.  The BCS?  Been there done that.  The Fiesta Bowls were great.  January 1st, 2007 made this team what it is, but a repeat won’t do this year.  The Broncos and their number three ranking are for real.  They are major league now, even if their conference isn’t, and the National Championship has become not only the goal, but a possibility, if the Broncos can play their way there.
(A repeat Fiesta Bowl visit is also almost impossible.  A loss would almost certainly preclude them from the BCS, while a perfect slate could land them in the National Championship.
The last two years Boise State beat Oregon teams that could very well have been as good or better than Virginia Tech, but the last two years taking care of business in that one wasn’t enough, even after rolling off perfect regular seasons, to get them to the big stage.  This year it is hard to imagine perfection coming up short again, which is what makes this game so big.
On the field, it is impossible to accurately break it down.  Preseason college football rankings being among the most flawed things in sports, it would be a mistake to consider the Broncos going away favorites despite a seven spot advantage.  The beginning of the College football season is about learning.  Boise State knows what they have, returning 20 starters on offense and defense, but it is pointless to assume that this gives them the advantage, since it is impossible to say where V-Tech stands, and since so much of college football is about development anyway.
There is only one thing that we can rule out.  The Broncos will be in this game.  They simply return to much talent not to play with Virginia Tech, and it has been a long time since they went into a game unprepared, so there is little or no worry of that. 
We know about the offense.  Kellen Moore is back, has been playing Madden since the day it was released, and has his reads down pat.  The howevermanyPetersonchoses-Headed running game will be as good as ever behind a line that is back as an entire unit (a rarity in any football, let alone college).  Titus Young is still one of the most electric players in the nation.  More efficiency to come from the NASCAR offense.  The defense though, is this team’s hidden strength.  Hard hitting as any in the nation, Boise has evolved into a team that can hold their own in smashmouth football, if the run and gun isn’t there.
Gone is the talent discrepancy that reared its head in Georgia, the last time that the Broncos went out east to open up against a big time foe.  The other night, my Dad commented that the Broncos high hopes could be dashed quickly if things go badly at FedEx.  I see the other side of that.  The hopes have finally come.  We can have high hopes now, just like the so called big time schools, because Boise is big time.  This time the Broncos are for real, not just for a mid major school, but for anyone. 
The stakes have changed, and I, for one, am fired up. 

The NHL’s Most Intriguing Teams- Part 1 of 10, The Edmonton Oilers


September is barely upon us, but it is never too early to start looking towards the NHL season. For the preview this year, a single column would feel incomplete, and to go through all 30 teams could get a bit tedious (

Today, the New York Islanders. They sucked last year. They are going to suck again. Tomorrow the Carolina Hurricanes). Instead, let’s narrow it down. For the 2010 NHL preview, we will take a look at 10 teams that could be interesting in the coming season, working in reverse order of how they did last year. Today, a team that interests the hell out of me, even if their ceiling is probably a 7-8 seed and a first round exit.

Intriguing Teams of 2010:
10. The Edmonton Oilers
Draft pick Taylor Hall has earned some exciting comparisons.
First things first: the Oilers are not a contender. The fact that this series starts off with them is not to say that they are. Far from it. In fact, if you gave me even odds for the Oilers to miss the playoffs, that is a bet that I would take in an instant. Yet they lead the feature on the third of the league that interests me the most. At best they are, as I said above, a fringe playoff team, and a couple of years away.
Still, they are two things that many teams in the NHL are not, and those two things make them pretty intriguing, even if they don’t make Edmonton ‘good.’
First of all, the Oilers are something that is surprisingly rare in a sports world that we like to think is founded on unpredictability and surprise. They are a complete wild card. Sure, there is a team or two each year that rises up to make a playoff run, and another that falls below where we think that they will finish, but usually there are some signs, and almost never is it a team that was legitimately considered one of the worst that makes the playoffs, or a true title contender that misses them. The vast majority of the time, these teams will come from the middle pool of 9 or 10 teams that could go either way.
With the Oilers coming off of a season that saw them finish in last place, and an offseason in which they didn’t pick up any notable names through trades or free agency, you can’t say that they are ‘expected’ to make a jump, either. Still, they are a team that could be significantly better, and even a playoff team if some things go right for them (and yet they are a team that could find itself atop the draft again next year). The reason for this instability is the second thing that makes them so interesting.
It isn’t just where the Oilers will finish that is so unpredictable. How they will do it is equally unknown. Consider, if you will, what the lines will look like on opening night, should I be given control of the team’s front office and coaching staff between now and then (note to the Oilers current front office- I’m available).
(Another quick note, if that actually happened, I would also go to Russia and physically threaten every member of the Salavat Yulaev Ufa front office until they signed a transfer agreement to return Robert Nilsson, but I will leave that out of this hypothetical.)
Gagner – Penner – Hemsky
Hall – Eberle – Horcoff
Paajavri Svensson – O’Sullivan – Brule
Omark – Fraser – Stortinin
Whitney – Vandermeer
Strudwick – Souray
Gilbert – Plante
Dubnyk
Gerber
Deslauriers
A few things probably stick out about that. First of all, you probably haven’t heard about half the names, and some of those are italicized. The italics are rookies, and that is the main takeaway here. The Oilers are young. Very young. The thing is, though, they have drafted really well, and they have first rounders who are expected to be impact guys from the last three drafts ready to come up to the NHL this year in Jordan Eberle, Magnus Paajavri Svensson, and Taylor Hall.
Without exception, this is the best group of NHL ready rookies in the league. Hall is a potential superstar, Eberle has proven himself to be a guy who comes up big when it matters in the last two world junior tournaments, Paajarvi is supposedly the best forward to come out of Sweden in the last few years, and Omark did THIS (and THIS, and THIS). All in all that leaves a squad that will be exciting for the novelty of seeing the new guys at the very least.
Looking at the actual quality of the lines, you know that you have one of the best second lines in the league…as your first line, two potential all-stars who could also potentially bring very little to the table this year on your second line, which is a 100% unknown, another player like that on your third line, joined by two guys who will see their offensive roles diminished by the influx of young talent and the return of Alex Hemsky. Finally, the Oil have the token tough guy in Stortini, and potentially the most exciting fourth liner in the league, in Linus Omark, who’s flashes suggest that he might be able to fill a bigger role if need be. (Also, Colin Fraser, who I can’t really think of anything to say about).
On defense, I love the acquisition of Whitney, even though Visnovsky was good for them, and had to have been tough to part ways with, Souray wants to be traded, but I don’t think has much value at this point, so I will just factor him in to the second pair which is serviceable. The third pair is then another rookie, former first round pick Alex Plante and perpetual prospect, Tom Gilbert, who is entering what feels like his 6th year as a young defenseman (he is actually 27 years old, but for whatever reason I still think of him as a young guy).
Goal is the major question mark. They have two guys who are in the prospect/player limbo state in Devan Dubnyk and Jeff Deslauriers, both of whom could be serviceable, or cold be crap. Finally, they have veteran Martin Gerber in camp to compete for the job, but none of those options inspire confidence, and between the lack of a stalwart and a D core that doesn’t turn heads, it could be a rough go for the Oilers in their own end this year.
With all the youth being carried by Edmonton, they become an interesting team. It is going to be near impossible to say how they are going to be, and where their production, apart from the first line, is going to be coming from, but the fact is, they are going to be one hell of a fun team to watch. At the beginning of the year, the draw of Hall, Eberle, Omark and Pajaarvi coming into the league and trying to compete will make them interesting. If Hemsky, Gagner and one of the rookies can make a jump, they will be a lot better than they were last year without their best player, Alice- er, uh, Ales Hemsky (an aside, in the 2008-2009 season, I went to about 20 Sharks games, including games against the Penguins and the Capital, and Hemsky may have been the most impressive player that I saw in person that year- he is that skilled).
The amount of young talent is staggering. If they keep this core together and add can manufacture a better D corps, the journey from the basement to the top of the league will be a short one. No one is going to pick this team to win the Stanley Cup now, but no team has a higher ceiling to improve in 2010-2011 than the Edmonton Oilers.

Hitting the Links; 9/2/10

Since the posting on here has been embarrassingly infrequent, I am going to try to start up a number of running features to get myself going with the blog. The first one I will try to make a weekly thing, and it couldn’t be simpler. Here are 10 links I have enjoyed, found funny, found interesting, or just want to share. Let’s do this every Thursday, no?

Did you know that Washington Nationals’ centerfielder and noted crazy person Nyjer Morgan was actually a pretty good hockey player, who even played part of a season in major junior (proof here). That is the kind of information I’m here for.
This is topical, obviously, because Morgan added to that profile last night. Ironically, it was the second line brawl of his career, as the Skolney fight is listed as taking place at the same time as four others.
God. I. Love. Hulu.
With a pretty solid arsenal of classic games (although it could definitely afford to be expanded), and an outstanding lineup of games from the last few years, Hulu.com is actually a fairly underrated website for hockey fandom.
As for that particular game, New Yorkers will remember it fondly, but I love it for a couple of reasons. First of all, the early 90s/late80s might be my favorite era to watch, with the possible exception of the current one. The main reason for this, I think, is because I get to see guys I remember as old and a bit stiff, and see what they looked like. It is like seeing new players, except they are guys I know already. Messier from this game is a great example. He is flying, and was clearly a great player, except when I saw that I was surprised. I only knew him as the guy who was old and slow, playing for the Rangers in the 2000s. Turns out he was good, who knew?
The second reason this game is worth it is the pure level of talent here. Bure. Messier. Anderson. Leetch. There are HOFers everywhere. Brian Leetch, though, is the star. He is in every rush, but never gets beat in his own end. There is no one in the league like him now, and that is at a time when the young defensemen have rarely been better.
Probably only interesting to you if you play hockey, but hey, I play hockey, so it was interesting to me. That’s all I got.
This KILLED me. The one in front is Dale Mitchell, in back is Andrew Engelange, both are Leafs prospects.
It is always hockey season in my mind, but today is really about the kickoff of College Football, so here are a few links to get you ready for that.
Speaking of having killed me, here is Deadspin writer/comedic genius Drew Magery’s take on my home state, from the linked article:
3. Boise State: America’s Sweethearts, my ass. I’ll be damned if I’m cheering from some dipshit team from the middle of Idaho. Let me ask you something: If everyone in Idaho died tomorrow, would you care? I mean, just DIED. A virus sweeps across the state and wipes out every last man, woman, and baby. Every Idahoan, dead in a puddle of their own shit and liquefied organs. Would you really give a crap? I say no. Oh, I’d turn on the news and say, “Oh, shit! All the Idaho people are dead. That sucks.” Then I’d turn off the TV and eat a box of Teddy Grahams. I’d pretend to care in my mind, so that I wouldn’t feel like the really shitty person that I am. But deep down? I wouldn’t care. I wouldn’t even care if I had relatives living there. If they were living in Idaho, they were probably relatives of mine that were all fucking weird and creepy and lived in a compound. Or they were insufferable outdoorsy assholes. Or they were rich fuckers who skied. Either way, Idaho is pointless.”

As a”rich fucker who skis,’ I agree. The whole thing is that funny.
More College Football from Deadspin, although this one is actually from Sports Illustrated, via Deadspin. It’s a good read, and should get you ready for the CFB season.

My personal vote for the ‘greatest game ever played. Bring it Hokies. (Also, could someone explain to me what the hell a Hokie is?)
In case that didn’t get you fired up enough (yeah right), here are a few more to get you amped for Monday Night.
I had to include at least one BS Report in the inaugural links list, but none of this week’s stuck out. This one is from about a month ago, but I really enjoyed it. Here is part 2.
Dear YouTube, please stop shutting down his accounts. I recommend any of the Heatley stuff (Joe the ventriloquist is good).
Again, Hulu…what can you say. This time, it is what has to be my favorite show at the moment (and not by a little bit either). Hulu’s only got episodes through the 2008 season, but it holds up well enough to be entertaining.