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Cigars & Football – A Simple Blend


Cigar Butts Week 3


Saturday was an absolutely great day for College Football! The games kept everyone on the edge of their seats and that’s not just the people at the stadiums;- here in San Antonio, TX, we couldn’t sit still either. We had highs and lows, lots of things to yell at, plays that made us groan, and, heck, during the Alabama vs. Texas A&M game, I would not have wanted someone to check my blood pressure. I’m sure the doctor would have me on meds to get it back down to near normal. The rollercoaster that game was, I’m sure its going to take my blood pressure a couple of days to get to normal, maybe Wednesday would be good.

UCLAFirst game of the day was UCLA against Nebraska. Nebraska fans gave the football world a great example of sportsmanship and class. The Bruins where dealing with the death of teammate Nick Pasquale, who was struck by a car in his hometown. The Huskers team had his number decal on their helmets, the fans held a moment of silence, and then released balloons in the UCLA colors. Nice job, Cornhusker fans, class act. Now to the game;- Nebraska began like they were going to beat their PAC-12 foe like a drum, jumping to a 21-3 lead. It seemed those black uniforms they were wearing were doing the job. Then, right before halftime, UCLA scored and cut the lead to 21-10. Someone should have told Bo Pelini to fix his hat because the second half was miserable for Big Red. The Cornhuskers collapsed. The offense that looked so good in the first half couldn’t move the ball at all. The Vaulted Black Shirt defense didn’t even slow UCLA down. The Bruins

scored 31 more points to end the game at 41-21. When asked about the come- back, Coach Mora said, “There was no mystical, magical X’s and O’s, it was just our players doing what they’re supposed to do.” It was a great emotional win for the Bruins, an even bigger comeback than last year. This squad got focused, calmed down, and played their game. The curse of the hat is still on Pelini.

The next game was absolutely masterful, if you’re an Alabama fan, or even a rabid College Football Fan. Texas A&M hosted Bama, in what turned out to be a fantastic game. My daughter has enjoyed her bragging rights over me all year long and at the start of the game I was worried that she was going to get to continue. Alabama kicked off to A&M and the Aggies drove right down the field and scored a touchdown, 7-0. Bama got the ball and went three and out. Great. The Aggies then scored again, 14-0. Was this going to be another game like last year? Alabama can’t afford to go down 21-0, not to Johnny Football, not to the Aggies, especially at home. Luckily, crimson_tideAlabama has AJ McCarron at quarterback. This guy never got rattled, never panicked, he just went by “The Process” as he has been taught. Actually, that’s what the entire Alabama team did. They adhered to the “The Process.” AJ threw three touchdowns in the first half and TJ Yeldon rushed for one touchdown to put the Crimson Tide up, 28-14. In this first half, Manziel was driving the Aggies toward the Alabama goal line, threw an interception in the endzone, and squandered their scoring opportunity. That interception shifted Ole Mo(mentum) back to Alabama. In the second half, another interception of a Manziel pass became the ultimate difference in the game. Johnny Football threw a pass deep down the middle to Malcome Kennedy, the ball bounced off the helmet of defender Jarrick Williams, and high into the air. Alabama safety Sunseri caught the ball and returned the interception, dodging a tackle attempt by Manziel (and several other Aggies) to score. I’m sure Sunseri is going to keep that ball on his trophy case for the rest of his life. The Tide was now up, 35-14. It was looking like Alabama was going to run away with the game. Then A&M scored on a couple of quick drives, 35-28. Blood pressure rising precipitously. Alabama got the ball, drove all the way to the A&M 3 yard line. Yeldon took the handoff, went right into the middle, the Aggie D-line knocked the ball out of his clutches, and A&M recovered. Blood pressure dangerously high. On third down from the end zone, number 2, that’s You-Know-Who, threw the ball deep to find Mike Evans open for a dad-gum 95 yard touchdown! 42-35, blood pressure about off the chart. Bama drove the field, McCarron faked a handoff and threw a nice flip pass to Jalston Fowler, Touchdown! 49-35, I felt better, not great, because there was 2:28 left on the clock. Sure enough, the Aggies scored another touchdown with 15 seconds left, 49-35! Oh, great! Just freaking great! I’m sweating, palms are sweating, I may have had a stroke, my daughter is singing the cheers of A&M and we have an onside kick coming up. Heart pounding, the teams lined up for the kick off, and the Sutton household was holding its breath. The ball bounced down the field 15 yards and wide receiver Cooper fell on it. Now all AJ had to do was take the snap, take a knee, and he did. I was finally able to breathe. Hadn’t even realized I had been holding my breath. The keys to the game were simple, the Alabama offensive line took control, AJ McCarron never panicked, played the way he was expected to play, and “The Process” beat “The Circus”.

After that game, it was time for a cigar break! Out to the back yard we went, where I smoked a CAO America and my Dad smoked his CAO PotomacBolivar. We needed that! My heart was still racing but blood pressure sliding down. Most of cigar time we talked about how the Alabama offensive line took over the game and what an improvement they showed from the Virginia Tech game. What a huge difference! Saturday they had to stand up and be counted and that’s exactly what they did. I did text my daughter, who was getting ready for her homecoming dance in California, that she had lost her bragging rights. Among other thing, this Writer and his Editor talked about the Alabama running backs and how, according to one sports writer, wish I could remember his name, the backs at Bama are like Sith Lords. First it was Darth Ingram, then Darth Richardson, Darth Lacey, Darth Yeldon, with apprentices Darth Fowler and Darth Drake on to rise. Darth Tombigbee didn’t even get into the game, but he’s around. Alabama is the Empire and they have taken over.

Next, Wisconsin taking on Arizona State in Tempe. Arizona State had stated this game was a “Black Out” game as all the fans and the team wore black. ASU threw away opportunity after opportunity. Receivers dropped balls they should have caught, the Sun Devils should have put this game away, but they didn’t do it. Wisconsin fought back and went into halftime with the lead, 14-13. The teams traded touchdowns in the third quarter, but ASU failed on a two point conversion. In the fourth quarter it all came down to the wire. ASUArizona State led by two and Wisconsin was driving. No time-outs left for the Badgers. With 18 seconds remaining, Stave took the snap and ran to the right hash mark to set up a game winning field goal attempt. The only problem was he started to kneel down but never put his knee on the ground, he just placed the ball on the ground and backed away. I couldn’t believe it! No whistle, so the ASU players jumped on the ball, thinking it was technically a fumble. Clock is still running. Confusion reigned, the Ref stepped up and pointed at the ground saying the ball was dead there. Wisconsin lined up to spike the ball and stop the clock, ASU players got off the ball and started to scramble into position. 3 -2-1 the clock ran out before Wisconsin could snap the ball. ASU stadium erupted in celebration, Sun Devil players started celebrating, Wisconsin players were standing there confused, the announcers were confused, people watching the game were confused. Everyone expected the referee to put time back on the clock allowing for the field goal attempt. The Referee walked over to Wisconsin Head Coach Gary Anderson and told him the game was over. Anderson wasn’t satisfied and vociferously noted his displeasure with the officials as they left the field. Why Quarterback Stave didn’t kneel, or hand the ball to the Referee after downing it, will remain one of the most asked questions all this season, and maybe more seasons to come. I thought the call should have been a fumble, ASU recovery, ball game over. But the argument could be made that Stave gave himself up and the ball was dead. Either way it was an unsatisfactory ending to an otherwise thrilling game.

Other games:

Oklahoma has found their starting QB in Blake Bell Wow, that guy can throw the football!

Oregon ran all over Tennessee. By the end of the game, Oregon fans were shouting, “We want Bama!” The only problem is, they’ve got to beat Stanford first.

Speaking of Stanford, they had their hand full with an outmanned Army team,. Cardinal won, but Army hung tough.

LSU had no problems with Kent State.

Ohio State, without their starting Quarterback, beat up on California 52-34.

Florida State ran, and passed, all over Nevada, 62-7

Another exciting game was Akron vs. Michigan. The Wolverines had their hands full with the Zips, being forced to stop them twice inside their own 5 yard line to win. Either the Zips are much better than they were last year, and CSF believes they are, or Michigan had a huge let down. Or both.

Washington beat Illinois, 34-24.

Another game was Ole Miss exacting some revenge on Texas. At halftime, Texas was ahead, 23 -17. In the second half the Longhorns didn’t score a point as The Rebels tacked on 27. At the end, the small, but loyal Mississippi fans were yelling “Hotty Toddy” so loud the sideline reporters couldn’t be heard. Way to go Rebels! S_E_C! S_E_C!!

Iowa was able to beat Iowa State, 27-21

Auburn scored on a touchdown pass with 5 seconds left to top Mississippi State. Auburn won, it was a hard-fought game, but CSF was not impressed with the Tigers.

It was a fantastic day of college football, worthy of good cigars. Believe I’ll have another.

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