Friday, October 20, 2006


ACC Football Just Plain Sucks

Ugh. I just couldn't resist free tickets to last night's Virginia-Carolina game, so a co-worker and I made the drive to Charlottesville to experience the hoopla between two piss-poor teams. I probably don't have any room to talk as ASU sits 0-3 in conference play, but this is the internet and there is no accountability for anyone by rule (law?). Did a little tailgating, got rained on a bit, and watched the Cavaliers make all of those baby blue-wearing fans pine for basketball season just a ittle bit more than they did on Wednesday. A few observations. if you will:

UVa runs out of the tunnel to low-exploding fireworks and 20-foot high shooting flames. I don't know I'd trade them for the AC-DC/bus-stomping intro, but I don't see why we can't do both. They actually happened to play Thunderstruck before a key third down situation when UVa was on defense, and I can't imagine not wanting to run through a wall after hearing the intro to that song. Needless to say, the defense made the stop.

For as much shit as I tend to give to the uppity Cav fans, they were actually pretty good last night. The stadium was mostly full on a rainy Thursday night against an inferior opponent, and a majority of them remained after I graced the exit following a UVa touchdown that made it 23-0 in the fourth quarter. It was obviously a carved-in-stone fact that UNC was not, in any way, going to mount any significant comeback.

Crazy-ass cardinals coach Dennis Green passed the torch to Virginia head coach Al Groh last night after Groh had a Chernobyl-sized meltdown when UVa was called for assisting the runner at the goal line, even after review. My "I have the maturity of a 3rd grader" moment of the game came at this time, because the referee motion for said penalty looks an awful lot like being flagged for ass-grabbing. Tee-hee.

You may have heard that UVa now has a marching band after booting their famed scramble band a couple of years ago, but don't get ahead of yourself. They have a band, yes, complete with snazzy hats and matching uniforms, but they don't march. They walk on to the field and play their half time show in one formation; where I'm from that's just a regular concert sans the chairs. This "show" consisted of an out of synch Electric Slide, but it was preceded by a stunning version of Michael Jackson's Thriller. They unfortunately didn't channel Vincent Price to do the voice over, but the flag girls and the woodwind section did the classic zombie line dance you might remember from the video, not to mention the dance scene in the 1980's blockbuster Teen Wolf.

There were no references made to the time the Cavs beat Florida State (1996) or to how great Tiki Barber was at any point during my evening. If you've ever been to Charlottesville on gameday, this is an incredible rarity.

UVa runs an offense that is almost identical to ASU v20.06. Wrinkles that could be added to Dirk's deleted arsenal could (ought to) include handing the ball off to the H-back on 3rd/4th & short (imagine Zach Miller stretching across the line!) and running the option, something done in Koetter's first two years. Virginia's quarterback Jameel Sewell looks like an immature Dennis Dixon, and I can say with confidence that a quarterback with that physical skillset at ASU would be Vince Young kinds of unstoppable. Al Groh's entire philosophy on offensive football is to run incessantly and control the clock; if he weren't so set in his ways the score could have easily been 77-0.

North Carolina runs a defense that is almost identical to ASU v20.05. Not that they run similar schemes or blitzes, just that they both play that sucktacular matador defense. Ole! You may pass, sir.

All in all it was probably a better time than sitting on the couch watching the NLCS or Grey's Anatomy, and I suppose I'd do it again given the opportunity. We as ASU fans were definitely spoiled by the offensive display put up by our beloved Devils last year, because if I had to watch this crap week in and week out I'd be more of a basketball fan too. This game was a shut out, and a convincing one at that as Carolina never crossed the thirty yard line. Keep in mind the winning squad has lost to two different directional schools in Wesern Michigan and East Carolina. The radio guys were actually bragging after the game about how stellar this UVa team is having shut out two conference oopponents this year, and they weren't even snickering about the fact that the other team was Duke. I had to sit through a Duke game last weekend, and their talent plus $1.98 will get you a forty at the 7-11. I mean that was some weak-ass shit. Speaking of forties, the boss-man is springing for wings and brews at Legend. Tally ho, and more to come tomorrow during another couch-a-thon Saturday. Good luck Sun Devils, although you better not need it against Stanford, a team that might give Duke a game.

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