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Cigars & Football – A Simple Blend

Cigar Butts Week 11


Cigar Butts

This past weekend was one of the best that College Football has offered this year. If anyone missed these games they missed out on some fantastic, BCS shake-up, games. It caused the fans in Oregon to weep, Stanford players to give their best impression of the Hanson Brothers, from the movie, “Slap Shot”, Oklahoma to wonder what they need to do, Florida State to become secure in the Number Two slot, and Alabama to grow deeper roots at the top of the hill.

At the end of the game Thursday night, three Stanford players wore taped-up glasses and appeared to give their best impression of the Hanson Brothers. If you haven’t seen the movie Slap StanfordShot, it’s a hockey movie starring Paul Newman, who has a bad hockey team until they unleash the Hansons, who are big nerds, and these guys prove to be the meanest people on the face of the earth. There is also some humor in this movie. Well that’s what Head Coach Shaw did against Oregon, he unleashed the Hanson Brothers. The Cardinal was just the toughest team that anyone in California has seen in a long time. Oregon is a flashy team, they rely on speed, and finesse. They have been averaging 50 some points per game, and putting up so many yards that it was hard to keep up with them. So how did Stanford stop this flash attack? 1) They held the ball for 42 ½ minutes. The best way to keep the Quack Attack from scoring is to keep them standing on the sidelines. 2)They ran the ball 66 times for 274 yards and, not only that, but they put NINE offensive linemen on the field and shoved the ball right down the Ducks’ throat.  Oregon’s defense couldn’t match the brute power that Stanford put on the field. 3) When UO had the ball the Stanford defense swarmed all over them.  When they arrived at the ball carriers, they hit them with a force and might that broke the back of the Oregon running game. Then, when Mariota dropped back to pass, he was never able to step up into the pocket because that would have put his life in danger, the Stanford defensive linemen were in Mariota’s backfield. In the fourth quarter Oregon did score 20 points after they were down by 26. They did have a good drive down the field and then an onside kick followed by another good drive, but the truth of the matter was the Stanford Defense was flat-out winded and couldn’t keep up the pace. But give them a break shall we, for the entire game they were the Hansons, but it takes a lot to play at that level for that long. That is the formula that has to be followed to beat the Green team of the Northwest. Oregon has now dropped out of the top five in the BCS, they are going to need a bunch of help just to reach the PAC-12 Championship game, not to mention the National Championship game. Stanford, who were just remarkable , will need a ton of help to reach the Highest of games but this is the Champaign and Caviar League where the Roses are the goal.

 Baylor put on a clinic against Oklahoma. Here at I picked Oklahoma to win this one and it appears that made the Bears mad because they poured it on against OU. In my defense I thought the Sooners were going to play defense the way Stanford did;- they didn’t, they didn’t even come close to playing that well. Baylor unleashed an attack that the people in Oklahoma used to see the Sooners unleash. BU did whatever they wanted to in that game. At the Baylor Bearsend of the first quarter, the score was 3 to 0, Baylor. But the Bears of the Brazos weren’t going to settle for a marginal lead, they unleashed an aerial attack that hasn’t been seen since WWII, followed by actually running the ball for 182 yards! Who knew that they could run the ball? Blow me down. Head Coach Art Briles has built a legitimate threat for the BCS Championship game.  That’s right I said it. Baylor is a serious threat to play in the BCS  Championship game. Yes, they have to run the table, no question about that, they also need help. Michigan State needs to beat Ohio State in the Great White North Championship game, and that’s doable, Florida State needs to lose in the ACC championship game because, let’s face it, Florida State has Syracuse, Idaho and Florida left on their schedule. They’re not going to lose. How Baylor is not ranked higher in the BCS poll is one of life’s mysteries, you want to say, “What the heck does it take?” FSU has played, what, three teams with winning records this year. Yes, the Clemson game was a great game for them, and Clemson was ranked higher in the poll. But the rest of the year the Seminoles have just been scrimmaging. Baylor should be ranked higher.

In the GOTY on Saturday night Alabama dominated LSU. The commentators will tell you that is took a fake punt call in the second half for Alabama to get things going and take control. Me, being an Alabama devotee, could see how they could say that, but CSF recorded this game and watched it again on Sunday without all the anxiety and worry that LSU was going to do something well and score. LSU had a good first quarter. They drove on Bama’s defense but were crimson_tideturned away because of a fumble. An Alabama defensive player did punch that ball out of the running back’s hand, it wasn’t like he dropped it. Then the Tigers had that horrible snap/fumble that Alabama recovered. Still, for that one quarter they drove the ball past Tide defender after Tide defender. In the second quarter the offensive line for the Red Elephants took control of the game. They pushed the visiting Tigers over the field at will. It wasn’t until the second half that this domination became so obvious. It took a little time for the Defense of the Tide to figure out what to do, but once they got it down, LSU didn’t do anything. In the first half the Bayou Bengals ran for 54 yards, in the second half they ran for 10. The first half stats people would say LSU was shut down. The second half is, what? Destruction. Alabama’s pass defense also stepped up their play in the second quarter and it wasn’t until the second half that this become evident, also. Yes, LSU was able to complete some good passes in the second quarter and second half, but every D-Back will tell you they are going to get beat at times. It comes down to stopping them more times than not, and the Tide secondary, which has been the weakest link in Bama’s defense, blanketed those touted and talented Tiger receivers. Alabama is the Number One team in the nation. They have the running game, which even the Hanson Brothers Defense can’t stop. AJ doesn’t make mistakes;- he is the ultimate Field General. He is not selfish, it doesn’t matter who the star of the game is, if it’s the running game, AJ is fine with that, if they need him to throw the ball 50 times a game, he can do that. All AJ does is execute the game plan and beat everyone that lines up against him. Alabama needs to win out, they have to beat Mississippi State this weekend, enjoy the scrimmage against Chattanooga and then take on a reinvigorated Auburn team, plus the SEC East Champion. If (When) they win all those that prize at the top of the NCAA football hill will have  Crimson and White leaves with scripted “A’s” on them. Alabama’s Crimson Tide will have roots deeper in the Championship ground than anyone else has ever been able to do. Roll Tide.     

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