IT'S GAME DAY. GET OUT OF BED AND GET YOUR GREEN AND GOLD HINDQUARTERS TO DALLAS.
But really though. I know quite a few students who are making the trek to SMU this afternoon, and I wouldn't be surprised if at least a quarter of the stadium is wearing green. Times have changed from the days when our own primary enemies would come from down south and take over half of Floyd Casey.
Yesterday was the first real day of FBS college football, and it was a pretty good one. Utah-Michigan gained the most attention, and deservedly so. Jim Harbaugh, in all of his khaki glory, is regarded as one of the best living coaches but was unable to orchestrate a turnaround at Michigan in time to take down the Utes, a future non-conference opponent for Baylor. Michigan's defense was fairly stable but the offense was incredibly unimpressive, struggling with turnovers and sputtering drives. There were sparks of competence, which is more than can be said of the Wolverines of the last two years, but it could still be a long season. The good news is that the B1G is still incredibly top-heavy, so Michigan should still snag a few good wins.
The most-watched game amongst Baylor fans was undoubtedly TCU-Minnesota. Predictions for this game differed wildly; many expected the Gophers to get trounced, some called it as a trap game for TCU. In the end? It was a frustrating but entertaining game to watch. The Minnesota defense was stout and determined, and mostly took away TCU's big play options, a massive feat when one considers the effectiveness of TCU's deep ball last year. Trevone Boykin showed flashes of brilliance but was somewhat shaky for most of the game. Boykin took a few huge hits and may have tweaked his groin, quad, or hamstring at some point after an ugly tackle. Minnesota covered the spread admirably but were overcome by awful luck, including an uncalled TCU fumble on a non-reviewable play and a Gopher back fumbling into the endzone after an angry and impressive drive. TCU can bleed, and if they can bleed, they can be killed.
Georgia Tech dominated Alcorn State, putting up 69 points with the triple option after taking their foot off the gas at halftime. I still feel good about picking them to win the ACC.
South Carolina escaped North Carolina after what should have been an easy go-ahead touchdown pass for the Tar Heels went horribly wrong and resulted in an endzone interception. It was a festival of incompetence that couldn't end quickly enough.
Oklahoma State looked mostly unimpressive against Central Michigan, but WR Marcell Ateman and QB Mason Rudolph both showed massive potential in the second half. If OSU's line gels and their defense finds some consistency they could be a serious trap game for any team that enters Stillwater. Central Michigan, a team that nearly made the most impressive comeback in bowl history after a five-touchdown fourth quarter against Western Kentucky in the Bahamas Bowl last season. For any who remember, Central Michigan went for two to end the game rather than shot for overtime and their comeback came just short. Oh, Chippewas.
Tonight's headliners include Baylor vs. SMU and Michigan State vs. Western Michigan. The two Cotton Bowl titans from last season are heavily favored against minor in-state powers, so look for a tour de force from the men in green. I'm backing WMU in my heart- a childhood friend of mine is now one of their offensive linemen. Sic 'em, Jackson.
Seeking Tailgate Friends
Anyway, I'll be making the journey up to Dallas for the game, and I should arrive sometime in the middle of the afternoon. If any of the ODB commentariat are going to be in town and want to meet up before the game, let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter at @ConnerSaurusRex. Your readership and consistent friendship, digital or otherwise, mean a lot to this guy.
The wait is nearly over, friends. Let's be great today.
By the way, even with the loss of Shawn Oakman and Orion Stewart, I'm picking Baylor to cover the spread comfortably.