Preseason Countdown: Alabama (6)

September 3, 2009

Throughout August and September we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season.  For the moment, let’s focus our attention on Alabama.  Not on the textbook scandals or dubious fishing trips, though.  Those are none of your concern, OK?  (Thanks.)  We’re talking strictly about the action on the field. First Impressions When Nick Saban bolted for Alabama, you just know that the Crimson Tide would instantly become a perennial contender in the world of college football.  Say what you want about the man, but he is nothing if not an elite football . . .

Preseason Countdown: Ohio State (7)

September 3, 2009

Throughout August and September we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season. Today I do my very best not to make cheap, easy jokes about the Ohio State football program because, really, the Buckeyes are really good, and have been for years. Until big games. Damn, I tried. First Impression While the Ohio State‘s rap is to fold in big games, they probably shouldn’t be known ONLY for that. They routinely dominate their conference, produce NFL draft picks like the Ivy League pumps out Daily Show writers, and are among the . . .

August Countdown: Oklahoma State (10)

September 1, 2009

Throughout August we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season. Today, in my return from the Canadian wilderness, I make the proverbial trip to Stillwater to examine why it is that an orange cowboy with a giant head shoots off an annoyingly loud rifle every 19 seconds. I’m told this signifies something good happening, but if you’ve ever seen or heard this, you, like me, have your doubts. First Impression Unless the thought new money in college football bothers you, there’s very little not to like about Oklahoma State. They run . . .

August Countdown: Ole Miss (8)

August 28, 2009

Throughout August, we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season.  Today, we take a trip to The Grove, a place that boasts pretty girls with southern drawls, sun dresses, and which Dan Rubenstein contends is one of the greatest places on the planet.  We’ll just have to take his word for it. (Photo by Stu in Tuscaloosa) First Impressions In the days leading up to the 2009 college football season, Ole Miss was pegged as this year’s darkhorse contender by a number of experts.  Just a few weeks ago, Phil Steele . . .

August Countdown: Penn State (9)

August 25, 2009

Throughout August, we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season.  Today, we take a stroll up College Avenue, stop by for a cone of Peachy Paterno, visit with the crazies at Paternoville, and close out the night with some ponies at the Rathskellar. That’s right, boys and girls… WE ARE… PENN STATE! First Impressions It’s 8:00 AM on a football Saturday.  You need only listen to the hustle and bustle of downtown State College to understand the electricity surrounding Penn State football.  Close your eyes and listen; the sounds of the . . .

August Countdown: Boise State (11)

August 24, 2009

Throughout August, we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season. Today, we trek into the Treasure Valley to examine Boise State. Don’t worry, I brought finger steaks from Buster’s, an ice cream potato from the Westside Drive-In, and my giant block of ice to slide down the hill next to the JR Simplot manor. How’s that for local references, Idahoans? First Impression Until a rogue safety throws his shoulder into your defenseless quarterback’s chin, it’s pretty impossible not to like the Boise State Broncos story. There’s the Fiesta Bowl, the innovative, . . .

August Countdown: LSU (12)

August 21, 2009

Throughout August, we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season. Today, we venture deep into the bayou, where beads are like currency, Nick Saban is the enemy, and purple and yellow is an acceptable color combination at social gatherings. First Impressions Les Miles is the kind of guy that doubles-down on every single hand of blackjack.  If he wins, he celebrates like a teenager after his first beer buzz.  If he loses, well, then you don’t want to be the dealer. Miles has brought this mentality to Baton Rouge — a . . .

August Countdown: California (13)

August 20, 2009

Throughout August, we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season. Today, we break out the pachouli oil, impressive SAT scores, and our loudest protest bullhorns as we take a seat on Tightwad Hill to catch a glance at this year’s Cal Bears squad. Somewhere, Adam Duritz is totally feeling our vibe.                        First Impression Cal is and should always be a good football school. There’s a good amount of talent in Northern California and a great amount in Southern California. The . . .

August Countdown: Georgia (14)

August 19, 2009

Throughout August, we will be counting down the top 25 teams (as listed here) going into the 2009 season.  Today, we travel deep within SEC territory to Athens, Georgia, a place that hates Ty Hildenbrandt and will have its opportunity to seek barbaric revenge when he visits on September 26th. First Impressions Two seasons ago, I penned the following line regarding Georgia football in an effort to draw a parallel between the Bulldogs and the great WWF star “The Ultimate Warrior“: Hulk Hogan once described The Ultimate Warrior as a “flat character.” Is that not Georgia? Other than a wild . . .