Posted 09/19/2009 at 01:19 PM
1:00 p.m. Eastern: My Dad is at The Swamp for today's shellacking and just sent me a picture of a student wearing a shirt that said: "Tim Tebow is going to lose his virginity today by @#$%^&'g Lane Kiffin." Nice.
Allright, let's get caught up. Cal just took a 21-7 lead at Minnesota. ECU and UNC are trading punches and are now tied at 14-14 midway through the second quarter. Ohio St. is taking it to Toledo with a 21-0 lead. Bucks closed -22 at most spots.
Kentucky has a 17-7 advantage against Louisville in the Governor's Cup game in Lexington. The 'Cats get Florida at Commonwealth Stadium next week.
Let's call today Lame Chafin's Comeuppance Day.
Back with more off and on all day and night...
1:25: Minnesota steps up before halftime and scores a huge touchdown with 40 ticks left. The Gophers now take momentum into intermission although they still trail 21-14.
2:55ish: Cal facing fourth and short in Minnesota territory with a 28-21 lead with 5:20 left. Is Steve Kragthorpe trying to save his job? Louisville has a 27-24 lead at Kentucky in the final stanza.
Ohio St. is cruising past Toledo (38-0) in Cleveland. Our first game has gone final as UNC has won and covered in a 31-17 win over East Carolina. Big instant replay review in the Cal-Minny game now. Are you holding a Northern Illinois money-line ticket? If so, you may be in business as NIU is leading 28-21 at Purdue late in the fourth. That money-line ticket is worth plus-375 on the return (risk $100 to win $375).
30 minutes until Lame Chafin' takes his medicine...
6:40ish: Big-time upset brewing at Washington where the Huskies and USC are tied 13-13 with 2:30 left in the fourth quarter. Florida beats Tennessee 23-13 but never threatens to cover the huge 30-point spread. Michigan St. has a late lead at Notre Dame.
Washington now has first and goal with 33 seconds remaining. The Huskies closed as 20-point underdogs and were plus-900 on the money line at the Las Vegas Hilton. Steve Sarkisian's squad just went up 16-13 on a field goal with three ticks left.
Virginia is trying to get its first win at Southern Mississippi and the Wahoos lead 34-31 in the final stanza. It's over in Washington with the Huskies pulling a monumental upset.
Back to Florida-Tennessee -- the Gators were up 23-6 early in the fourth quarter and Tim Tebow had just gained first-down yardage inside the 10-yard line. However, a UT defender stripped Tebow and the Vols got a 41-yard fumble return. Several plays later, Montario Hardesty found paydirt for the first touchdown against UF's defense all year long. After the Vols got the ball back down just 10 with more than four minutes left, Lane Kiffin went real soft. He had done a masterful job of keeping his team in the game with a ball-control offense that ate up huge chunks of clock in the first half. But with a realistic chance to rally for a stirring comeback win, Kiffin didn't even have his team go to a no-huddle offense. Furthermore, he called a number of running plays to keep eating clock. Translation: Tennessee came to town to get a moral victory and was satisfied with just that. That's weak.
On the other hand, big-time props to Monte Kiffin for a sensational gameplan and Eric Berry showed why he's one of the top handful of players in the country. Berry was everywhere. He had a interception in the first half that set up a UT field goal and didn't miss a tackle all day.
Notre Dame just got a crucial interception with Michigan St. marching and in field goal range trailing 33-30. With less than a minute left, the Irish are poised to milk the clock, but the Spartans will likely cover as double-digit underdogs.
7:20ish: Oregon St. has an early 3-0 lead over Cincy in an oustanding under-the-radar matchup. The Beavers are trying to avenge a 38-3 loss at Cincy on a Thursday night in 2007. FSU is up 7-0 at BYU but the Cougars are in the red zone.
8:15: FSU came to play in Provo tonight. With 1:34 left, the 'Noles are ahead 20-14 and inside the red zone. Arkansas has a 14-7 lead vs. Georgia. Vandy and Mississppi St. are playing a snorer with the Bulldogs leading 6-3 late in the second quarter.
The Dawgs just trimmed the Hogs' lead to 14-10. Joe Cox looking sharp tonight. Ryan Mallett was looking sensational until a fumble on Arkansas' last possession.
8:40ish: So. Miss ended up rallying to beat Virginia, 37-34. Arkansas up 21-10 to Georgia and my oh my, does Ryan Mallett have a gun on him. I said it this summer and I'll say it again: The Hogs are my SEC West sleeper and they are looking good tonight.
On the flip side, South Carolina is looking shaky with a 17-16 lead on FAU thanks to the Owls missing a game-tying PAT late in the second quarter.
So let's re-cap some of the biggest stories coming out of Week 3 today:
1-USC might be out of the national-title race.
2-Washington is 2-1 and on the rise under Steve Sarkisian.
3-Tennessee safety Eric Berry is one of the top 3-4 players in America.
4-Monte Kiffin is the best defensive coordinator in the nation.
5-Not today, but The U (Miami) is on the rise (in spite of Randy Shannon and because of Jacory Harris).
6-The Gators are very nasty on defense but other than Tebow and Jeffery Demps, they have a lot of work to do on the offensive side of the ball.
7-Arkansas QB Ryan Mallett is real good.
8-Al Groh's hot seat keeps getting warmer in Charlottesville.
9-Michigan is a surprising 3-0.
10-Washington St. rallied for a rare win, 30-27 over SMU.
They are finally underway on the Plains after a lengthy lighting delay with Auburn and West Va. scoreless early in the first quarter.
We will check back in late-night with a more detailed summary of the night games and be sure to keep an eye out for my Week 3 Rewind tomorrow.
Past Midnight: A few closing thoughts...Auburn wins and gets a fortunate cover against West Va. on a pick-six late in the fourth quarter. The Tigers are 3-0 and we have to start taking notice. I still don't trust Chris Todd with my money but I will say that Gene Chizik's team has a good chance to take a 6-1 record and possibly even a 7-0 mark into its Oct. 24 trip to Baton Rouge.
I spent most of the summer defending Joe Cox as Georgia's starting QB in 2009. I'm fairly certain I was in the minority with that opinion, so I was pleased to see him enjoy a career night in the Dawgs' 52-41 win at Arkansas as two-point favorites. Cox tied a school record with five TD passes against the Hogs.
-Cincy is going to win the Big East.
-Miami is the ACC's best team.
-Alabama is real nasty.
-USC is going to lose at least one more game.
-South Carolina is going to beat Ole Miss this Thursday.