The Hybrid: Nebraska. Wisconsin. GameDay. Madison. I'm Going?

MADISON, WI - SEPTEMBER 24: The drum major for the Wisconsin Badger band poses during a pre-game show before the Badgers take on the South Dakota Coyotes at Camp Randall Stadium on September 24, 2011 in Madison Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

What if you lucked into the Game of the Week?

I'm somehow attending the Nebraska-Wisconsin Super Game this weekend, and I still don't totally know how it happened. It's not a long story or anything -- my step dad, one of the 10 nicest people in the world, is a huge Nebraska fan. A while back, he asked me if I wanted to go to one of their games this season. Assuming he meant Iowa or Michigan, I agreed. He came back to me a few months later telling me he got tickets for Nebraska-Wisco. In Lincoln? Haha, no -- in Wisconsin. Well, of course.

Do have a choice? Could I say no? A small part of me thought about it, but I ultimately decided to say 'screw it' and go because, after all, we don't really take a lot of trips like this, and it's a lock to be a good time.

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Fast forward four weeks into the season, and now the game is marquee? Hey, sweet. Instead of boring Big Ten, we get dope night game, Russell Wilson Coolest Ever, Nebraska's First Ever Big Ten Game, ESPN college GameDay in the house, *and* the boring Big Ten. With Washington State dead, mostly dead Iowa on bye week, and Michigan playing at 11 a.m., I'm conflict free and could not be more excited. I suppose I'm rooting for Nebraska out of respect for my step dad (and because they're the road team [and because Wisconsin fans were violent and threatening last time I was up there]), but either way, it should be cool.

Also: Bucky the Badger is my favorite mascot in the world, and I will be reporting everything he does when I write this next week, assuming I remember.

THE HYBRID


Quick, Selective Hits On The AP Top 25


1) LSU
: So crappy LSU is No. 1, eh? And just because they have eleven NFL players playing in their back four on defense. That's just great. They should advertise all their games with "LSU: a defense so great, it makes every game bad!" In LSU's defense (no pun intended), they've rolled their schedule, and that's with three Top 25 neutral/road victories. The rest of the Top 25 has five. So yeah, they deserve this ranking.

2) Oklahoma: We losing some mo', Boomer?

3) Alabama: I originally pre-prepared a long rant in my head about how if Alabama and LSU meet again in the national title game, I will quit college football/explode/etc., but it's way too early in the season to stress out about it. The homie Clay Travis spells it out here (point number nine).

4) Boise State
5) Oklahoma State: Top five, boys! How beauteous. Mike Gundy, stay the course.

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6) Stanford
: If every team in college football was a disease or malady, Stanford would be skin cancer.

7) Wisconsin: AW
8) Nebraska: YEAH, I am going to your stupid game. Is there room in the Top 5 for the winner of this? Who gets bumped out? Oh, Boise? Yeah.

9) Oregon

10) South Carolina: A frisky looking Top 10 spot for the Cocks. They'll probably have some cool, murder games coming down the pike real soon.

11) Virginia Tech
: We still undefeated?

/looks up

K, cool. It's weird to see the Hokies a) unbeaten so late, but b) still out of the Top 10.

12) Florida: What up, punks? How you feelin' about 'Bama this week? It's funny, I went out of my way to remove the Making Fun Of Tebow section from this column that we had going on all of last year, but Florida being in the Top 25 every week has given me chances to take perpetual shots at him here, so it's all kind of worked out. This week? I got nothin'. But hip-hop artist J. Cole dropped his debut album "Cole World: The Sideline Story" this past Tuesday, and in a song featuring Jay-Z (Track 7's "Mr. Nice Watch"), Mr. Carter himself drops a Tebow reference. Seriously:

I got a Hublot, I call it Tebow
I strap that bitch with a Gator band
Y'all niggas ball half time, ya'll niggas like the gator band

So what does that mean? Rap Genius sez:

The band to his Hublot isn't ordinary leather...nope. Mr. Nice Watch has an alligator skin band.

At least Jay didn't compare Tebow to himself. That's my saving grace. Peep the song here, if you like. Reference is around the 2:45 mark.

13) Clemson: Climpson!

14) Texas A&M: It was funny, during the Texas A&M-Okie State game last week, I still hadn't decided who I was rooting for. I'll always love Mike Gundy, but then I had this funny idea of how great it would be if A&M won the Big 12 during its final season there and they were all like "PEACE!" once the season was over and just made the whole conference look bad, with the reigning champ not even coming back to defend. Would have really been the perfect capper. So I talked myself into this being a much funnier idea than it probably was, but I really felt like I was in the Aggie corner. Then, when OSU went up, I kind of shrugged my shoulders and was happy with that, too. Allegiances.

15) Baylor

16) South Florida
17) Texas
18) Arkansas
19) Michigan: Brady Hoke Puke Link Of The Week.

-- On a shelf in his office at the University of Michigan, Brady Hoke keeps a display of various baseball caps.

There's a Pittsburgh Penguins hat, a few White Sox caps, plus a couple from the Detroit Tigers.

"That's my collection to this point," said Hoke, Michigan's head football coach.

He didn't buy these hats, though. And they weren't given to him as gifts. Instead, he took them from his players because they broke his rule.

"Those are hats from players that don't wear Michigan hats in here," he said.

It's offensive to Hoke, 52, in part because he considers this to be sacred ground - a sanctuary of history and values he's learned and taught from Grand Valley State to San Diego State to here in Room 2202 at Schembechler Hall.

What's that, you want another quote from the article? How about something only six paragraphs later that says the exact same damn thing.

"You only wear Michigan in here," Hoke said.

There is not a person I do not hate.

Let's flush this down with the truly awful-awful hiring story.

He famously said he "would have walked" to Ann Arbor to get the job when it was offered to him on Jan. 11, 2011.

But he didn't jump as quickly as might be expected. Hoke was getting coffee in the kitchen at his rental home in La Jolla that day when the phone rang. According to the caller ID, it was Michigan Athletic Director Dave Brandon. Hoke didn't answer. His wife was out for a swim, and Hoke wanted her there for the moment. Brandon called about three times, but Hoke still didn't answer. Finally after about 40 minutes, Laura returned. Finally, Hoke answered.

"Would you like to be the head coach of the University of Michigan?" Brandon asked.

"I said yes obviously," Hoke said.

He said he didn't celebrate.

"I told Laura we had work to do."

And I have work to do, too: trying to never think about this again.

20) TCU
21) Georgia Tech
22) West Virginia: I know y'all tried, so it's cool.

wvcouchy.jpg
23) Florida State: Dead?

24) Illinois: MY BOYS.

25) Arizona State
: Welcome back to the two-five, bros!

Dropped from rankings: USC (we love you, we always will love you -- and we will never forget you)

Any Sweet Games This Weekend?


Thursday Night Lights
South Florida (16) at Pittsburgh:
Upsides? Semi-cool South Florida, Thursday Night Lights. Downsides? All-Pitt anything. Random? I think I saw the USF has never won a Thursday night game. Maybe Thursday night *away* game? Something like 0-5? I am not looking that up.

Saturday
Texas A&M at Arkansas (18):
Wait, is A&M in the SEC already?

Minnesota at Michigan (19): Wow, I almost didn't think about it before, but I laughed just now to see Michigan at No. 19. Holy everything, they are over-ranked. In better news, Denard joined Twitter. My favorite moments have been his handle "@DenardX" (haha, laughing out loud like a child as I type this) and how he invited everybody to his birthday party at a bowling alley last week*. I guess earlier this year, he said he couldn't see himself joining the damn thing (emphasis mine).

"I can barely text, first of all," Robinson said at Big Ten Media Days in Chicago. "So me being on Twitter, I don't think I'd have very much to say. I'd just have a Twitter for no reason."

There were plenty of fake accounts before @DenardX. Fifteen accounts still hold the name "Denard Robinson."

"(Last year,) some of my teammates was like, 'Yeah, I'm following you on Twitter,' " Robinson said, shaking his head. "I said, 'No, you're not following me on Twitter."

There's no way this will last as long as I need it to.

* - would have sacrificed everything to go

Northwestern at Illinois (24): Kill dem Cats, Illini! Let's go! Wooooo!

/cups hand over mouth, going back and forth, trying to impressed racist Illini fans

I'm gonna get kicked off this bandwagon so fast.

chiefhahadead.jpgOh, how did you exist?


Penn State at Indiana: Wow, welcome to Big Ten play. I would pay $70 dollars to not watch this game.

Kentucky at LSU (1): Hovering around zero-percent interested.

Nevada at Boise State (4): Eh?

Wait, didn't Nevada beat them last year?

/checks

Haha, they did! I'm now interested.

Auburn at South Carolina (10): Meh? Peh? Ah, sure, I'm in.

Baylor (15) at Kansas State: No.

Michigan State at Ohio State: Wow, neither ranked. Kinda crazy. Listen, I know it's unranked losers and I know it's Big Ten, but I've gotta say: I'm in on this game.

Clemson (13) at Virginia Tech (11): The rankings make this game not look mega-cool, but Climpson and V-Tech are both unbeaten. We should somewhat care. AY-SEE-SEE!

Ball State at Oklahoma (2): Haha, I like this game for no reason.

Texas (17) at Iowa State: Unbeaten Texas goes into the lion's den to face my boys, the 'Clones.

Alabama (3) at Florida (12): Listen. No one hates the SEC more than me, but this is probably our Game of the Week. There's just too much hatred and South and speed and pro talent involved with this game to raise Nebraska-Wisconsin above it, I'm sorry. You'd have to be heavily biased to disagree.

Last thought: does anybody call Charlie Weis "Chuckles"?

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Nebraska (8) at Wisconsin (7): Fake Game of the Week! The spread of this game is, like, nuts. I think Wisconsin is favored by 7.5 or something real high like that. Not sure if it's moved or not, though. Like Vegas, I will be picking the Badgers in this one, and I feel pretty good about it. But remember: they really haven't played anyone this year, so there could be an adjustment period.

Notre Dame at Purdue: Dubs vs. Boiled Sports. Will you pick a side?

UCLA at Stanford (6): WHY DOES STANFORD DISINTEREST ME SO DAMN MUCH?

College Football Bandwagon

Every year, once my actual favorite teams (Michigan, Iowa, Washington State) have been eliminated from the national title picture (by, you know, losing just one game), my buddy Ryan and I create what we call the "College Football Bandwagon" which mostly consists of a list of all the undefeated BCS conference teams minus Notre Dame (and sometimes others). The goal of the CFB is to fake feel good about yourself when your "team" makes the national title game. Plus it provides invested, fake rooting interests.

N/A

College Fantasy Football Update


My college fantasy team, Denard, is now 3-1 after a pretty stellar showing last weekend. Wisconsin QB Russell Wilson just continues to rip bodies in half. CBS Fantasy Analysis -- double spaces after sentences and all -- take it away:

Wilson's stat lines have gone beyond ridiculous.  11 touchdowns, just one interception, and he's completing 76 percent of his throws.  Who can stop this offense?

Certainly not North Dakota last week. What's been amazing about Wilson's great lines against crappy teams is not the dominance overall, but the dominance in spite of his stupid running backs also scoring at least one, two, or (maybe) three touchdowns every game. Wisconsin will go up a few TDs, and I'll think it's over, but then they just keep passing and being awesome. It's so damn sweet. I'm also starting a platoon of Ohio State RBs Jordan Hall and Carlos Hyde, and that's been somewhat successful, too. Nevermind my Michigan WR starting platoon that's put up a combined one-ish points in the last two weeks (thanks guys!). Those who think Denard should get blame for this can, just, no.

I took it 72.25 to 48 last week.

This week: Russell and his Runts take on a team of absolute nobodies. I've only heard of two position players on that team: 1) a random Michigan RB who is arguably fourth string, and 2) the Nebraska defense (which does not count). I'm favored to win by lots.

Positive Big Ten Rant

I fairly and unfairly (99% of the time, fairly) rip on the Big Ten, but this stat is dope: four of the five top rushers in the Big Ten are QBs. So cool. SO cool.

Actual Big Ten Rant

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For those unaware, that is seriously former Purdue current Indy Colts QB Curtis Painter. I asked Boiler Sports to defend it, and they said: "Can't do it."

What They Said -- A Take On Others' CFB Takes


- A rare NFL link from me, but this is something I might hate even more than Michigan tradition.

Random Picture I Came Across While Googling Stuff For This Post

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Wrapping It Up...

Time to get my cheese and beer on. I know there were a lot of dudes this week, so I'll try to make that up next week.

Bobby Loesch is the assistant editor of Tremendous Upside Potential and a contributor to SBN Chicago. He can be reached at bobbyloesch [at] gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy.

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