by John Walters

Happy 30th Birthday to BQQB!

Starting Five

Garnett (51) rag-dolled two U-Dub defenders on this run by Daniel Marx (right),, including JoJo McIntosh (left). “Get back, JoJo!”

1. Red, White and Bruise

If you stayed up late to watch even more college football on Saturday night, you saw this play by Stanford offensive guard and team captain Joshua Garnett. He rag-dolled not one but two Washington defensive players who had the temerity to get in his way, and it is my belief that this play symbolizes the attitudes of three teams whose uniform hues are quite similar: the Cardinal, Alabama and Oklahoma.

All three have one loss, but all three are “Play At Your Own Risk” the remainder of the way. One of these three schools is advancing to the college football playoff if not more. You can print out this column, tape it to your refrigerator and highlight that previous sentence or, if you do not have a printer, simply tape your entire computer to your refrigerator.

Mixon (above) and Perine combined for 355 yards rushing and six TD’s in Saturday’s 63-27 defeat of Texas Tech. That Longhorn blemish will fade into the recesses if they keep playing like this.

While pundits still ruminate on whether Baylor or TCU is the better team, they conveniently forget that the Bears and Horned Frogs still have to play the Sooners (as well as Oklahoma State) and that their feckless schedules leave absolutely no margin for error. If the Sooners, who have a two-headed rushing attack in Joe Mixon and Samaje Perine, and a Manziel clone in Baker Mayfield, can run the table against all three currently unbeaten teams, they’re in.

(That’s Tide quarterback Jacob Coker, above, lowering the boom)

Likewise, Alabama, if they win out (beating LSU and Auburn), are in, in my opinion. Sorry, Ole Miss, even if you do run the table.

And right now Stanford looks as good as any team in the country.

What do these three have in common? Excellent, experienced coaches, solid quarterback play and rushing attacks, and a WHOLE LOT of physicality. These are three teams that will beat you up while beating you.

Yes, they all have one loss. And none of them are currently ranked higher than seventh. Don’t be surprised if you see one, if not all three, of them in the four-team field.

2. That’s So Raven!

Baltimore had the ball with the chance to tie the game late last night in Arizona but Joe Flacco (Flaccometer ranges from “Elite!!!” to “Bum”) threw a red zone pick, just like in their season-opener at Denver. So Baltimore falls to 1-6 even though all six losses have come by eight points or less.

So, yeah, only a few plays are keeping the Ravens from being at least 4-3 instead of 1-6. But as coach John Harbaugh’s brother, Jim, said yesterday, “If worms had machine guns, birds would be scared of them.”

Note: It’s been 17 days since a Har-bro won a football game. Tense times in those homes.

Meanwhile, there was yet another play inside University of Phoenix Stadium involving a running back who appeared to be down but whom the refs decided was not. Remember Michael Dyer of Auburn in the 2010 BCS National Championship Game (if you’re an Oregon fan, you do). Last night Arizona’s Chris Johnson was brought down, but only onto the belly of Baltimore’s 6’1″, 335-pound Brandon Williams.

(In case you are wondering, the Walkers ate Johnson’s intestines, but we think Williams survived by crawling under a dumpster).

(This run put Oregon’s hopes in Dyer straits; I’m already sorry).

It seemed to me that Johnson, though not touching the ground, had his forward progress stopped. The refs should have blown the whistle. They did not and Johnson alertly kept going once Williams released him and ran 62 yards, all the way to the 7. Like Dyer, Johnson’s extra effort earned his team a field goal.

3. Rogue Waves (Cont.)

I’ve said it before and will repeat: Read Susan Casey’s The Wave some day. It’s fascinating (and far better than her first book, The Devil’s Teeth; also, Casey is kinda smokin’ and she knows it). Anyway, she discusses rogue waves, giant swells that seem to emanate from nowhere and are often responsible for ships simply disappearing.

Casey was not taken out by this rogue wave while giving a talk…

The latest example of the damage rogue waves can do: a whale-watching boat off the coast of British Columbia capsized over the weekend when, on a lovely day, it was struck by a rogue wave. Five Britons died, although some 21 or so others aboard were rescued.

4. The Daily Harrumph: WWE at Spring Valley High

Has the girl and her family already appeared on GMA or Today? How soon until the $4 million lawsuit and the out-of-court settlement? ARGHHHH!!!

Let me preface this by saying that I happened to watch a documentary all about the Kent State Massacre last night on Netflix (“The Day the Sixties Died”; recommend it). Anyway, I never knew before watching this that two days before the National Guard opened fire, killing four students, that a group of students had set fire to the ROTC Building on campus. When fire engines responded to the blaze, some students used knifes to puncture the water hoses being used to extinguish the fire.

Which does not, of course, make it okay to open fire using live ammunition on unruly students. But it does add context.

I don’t know what the police officer here at Spring Valley High was thinking, exactly. I also don’t know why this student needed to fail to listen to her teacher, and then to a police officer. What was behind her blatant disregard for her teacher and her fellow students?

I don’t know. Could the cop have used better judgment? Uh huh. But social media and YouTube videos will turn her into a martyr. I think she shoulders some of the blame here, too.

And there it is: my Daily Harrumph!

 5. Where In The World

Yesterday’s Answer: Sheraton Huzhou Hot Spring Resort, China

Music 101

What I Like About You

There are a few bands (Bay City Rollers) that are as famous for being one-hit wonders (Star Land Vocal Band) as The Romantics, but there is no band (Chumbawumba) that is more of a one-hit wonder (The Dream Academy) than this quartet from Detroit. I’d wager that there was not a single dorm party in my four years at college that A) wasn’t broken up by an overly fascist RA and B)  did not include this 1980 tune at some point during the festivities (HEY!).

Remote Patrol

“If you wanna score runs/He can get you some/Lo Cain….

World Series, Game 1

FOX 8 p.m.

It almost (“almost?”) seems wrong and un-American that the NBA is tipping off its season on the same night as Game 1 of the World Series. Seeing as how the NBA season does not begin in earnest until late February (or April), I’m going to pass on advising you watch the Bulls and Cavs (I’m sure Susie B. will fill us in tomorrow below). Matt Harvey gets the start for the LGM! and Edinson Volquez will take the hill for Kansas City, though Erin Andrews will probably only interview Eric Hosmer for the entirety of the Fall Classic.

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