This Thursday, seventeen college football games will be played. In honor of these happy times, and considering that I’ve been in the mood for writing primers as of late, I felt that one for all things college football was highly appropriate.
Let this be your guide for navigating the world of college football outside Notre Dame.
“MACtion” – The MAC facing off against one another in a show of true football glory. There is nothing like a Thursday night game that features two teams that simply can’t stop each others offense because their defense is so overwhelmingly awful. Or their offenses are so overwhelmingly awful that they make Tommy Rees look like a Heisman candidate. Either way, these games tend to climax with crazy endings that make watching these weeknight games so damned fun. It’s the incredible appetizer to whet your palate for the weekend’s main course. Embrace it.
Related: “The Tessitore Effect“. Often associated with MACtion, Tessitore has the uncanny ability to magically make any football game overwhelmingly interesting making an upset a near guarantee. Tessitore will be moving to Saturday nights this season and unfortunately has been saddled with Matt Millen as he broadcast partner. Why must you ruin everything that’s awesome, ESPN?
“Clemsoning” – the inevitable end to many a Clemson game and their season in general. Start off on a high, look like you can set the world on fire and then find the most hilarious ways to continuously shoot yourself in the foot until all hope is lost. You think 2011 for the Irish was bad? That’s Clemson. Every. Damn. Year.
Related: F#@k Clemson.
“Four Verts F#@ks the Prom Queen” – As a Michael Bay directed Sean Connery told us (if you’re at work, turn your volume down), your best simply isn’t enough. Losers whine about their best, but winners…winners go for it all. Four Verts embodies this attitude. It’s the play you draw up in the sandlot. To hell with the quick slants, screens, and crossing routes–I’m sending four guys deep, just try and stop it.
Related: Mike Leach – If there is a man that embodies four verts, it’s Mike Leach. If there’s a “most interesting man in the world” of college football, it’s Leach. His air raid offense perfected four verts, leading to one of the most incredible moments in college football history. His book is easily one of the best things I’ve ever read as well–it’s like stepping into the mind of a mad genius. Hop on the pirate ship of Cap’n Leach docked at Washington State. You won’t regret it.
“Fat Guy Touchdown” – A moment of true football perfection and pure joy and if you think it is neither of these things you are soulless. Spencer Hall describes this better than I ever could:
A fat man handling the football is football’s greatest delight. Don’t say something else is. You are wrong. No matter how they may deny it, a defensive or offensive lineman with the ball in his hands believes the universe has finally come to its senses and let destiny grip the wheel. ‘You bastards. You’re going to see what I knew all along: that I was made to do this, and that you f#@kers are all about to taste 300 rolling pounds of hot festering death.’ There may be a part of their brain that relays all the logical instincts of this moment–panic, terror, obvious shock at having the ball in their hands–but in their soul, they know. The rhino’s chance to absolutely level a hapless tourist fallen off the safari wagon is a magnificent thing: never, ever root against it.
Related: GIFs – Forget freezing a moment in time and to hell with instant replay. The GIF is the new king. It has truly evolved into its own art form. It takes and captures the incredible, the heart-breaking, and the absolutely hilarious in an infinite loop that locks you in for hours. For instance, let me introduce you to Mortified Michigan Punter.
“PAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWL” – Generally used to mimic the butt-hurt Alabama/SEC fan. “Pawl” is Paul Finebaum who hosts a sports show in Alabama. Actually the term “hosts” should be used rather loosely, Finebaum’s show is basically the battle ground in which Alabama and Auburn fans scream at each other and/or announce that they killed the oak trees at Toomer’s Corner.
Related: The Iron Bowl – I am now closer to this than I ever thought possible. As each year passes, I start to hate Alabama with an even more irrational and seething hatred that is usually reserved only for the Southern Cal and Michigan. I blame my sister (who attends Auburn). This rivalry is one of the best in college football and ESPN films did an incredible job in trying to capture this unique brand of hate.
Also Related: Other awesome rivalry games that I am a fan of and think you should be as well:
- Red River Shootout – Texas/OU @ The Cotton Bowl (happens during the Texas State Fair as well)
- Worlds Largest Cocktail Party – Florida/Georgia (on my “must tailgate” bucket list)
- Bedlam – OU/Oklahoma State
- The Holy War – BYU/Utah (related: BC, not a ND rival and therefore that game is not a “holy war”)
- Michigan/Ohio State
- Backyard Brawl – Pitt/West Virginia
This should give you a fantastic start on navigating college football life outside the ND bubble. Have any other rivalries, memes, or other general college football greatness that I missed? Sound off in the comments and let us know.
Texan by birth, Irish by choice.
Born and raised in the great state of Texas, Tex is a first-generation Domer and a former student manager. After graduation, he left the cold winters of South Bend behind and returned back to his home state with a computer engineering degree in tow. Missing the daily grind of working football practices and talking football with fellow Irish fans every day, he took to blogging, a path which eventually led him to Her Loyal Sons. Continuously diving into stats and game film, Tex strives to break down every aspect of Fighting Irish football--even though it's determined to kill him.