By Bobby Loesch on October 19, 2017 at 2:00 pm
Sorry, Bro
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Hybrid is a weekly Big Ten football preview, plus relevant or whimsy games from the national slate

It was probably the one yard punt that did it.

We did spend a good chunk of last week making fun of bad punts, you know.

Finding out Clemson had been upset only a little bit earlier didn't help. Remembering it was Friday the 13th definitely didn't help. Watching my high school alma mater blow a two touchdown lead and lose in OT just as Wazzu-Cal started really, really didn't help.

But, like, to have faith ripped away from you in such a definitive way. I can't think of anything more college football.

Wazzu fell, and they fell hard. Despite being, like, three TD favorites, they found a way to lose by five touchdowns. That's basically an 8 TD swing.

That was Friday night only. That wasn't even college football's actual day.

Nah, after that? After that, I had to watch the banana boys. And find out Mikey had a "lower body" injury*. And brace for whatever horrible crap Ohio State had up its sleeve. Simply trying to disconnect from something that meant so much only 24 hours earlier. I did a decent job; went to Pollyanna, ate some Mexican food, had a relatively normal night.


But then, right before bed... I found out Washington was on the ropes late in the third quarter vs. Arizona State.

Hate led my heart -- and I followed the air of lurking death.

Drown, we did. And for poor U-Dub, it was on the thread of threads.

That's the real college football -- and we all know it. For every horrible action, there is an equal and opposite horrible action.

Die slow. And find us in the shadows by your grave.

/big ass smirk

The Wazzu flag.

Like, we really have hit a point where I'm rooting for a puppy to fall down the stairs and explode... over and over and over again.

Yeah, it's weird. Maybe even hard to totally understand. What's that, you need more time to think on it? By all means...

/flips double birds

I was and am a broken mess. But I'd rather live with hate than die with love.

The Hybrid

"Some days, I just have to swear to get a good taste in my mouth."



Friday Night Lights



Maryland at Wisconsin (5): As someone who roots for shitty Michigan and disappointing Wazzu, I know a fraud Top 10 team when I see one. Madison, we love you, but this has gone on long enough. Is this one of those things where the schedule is backloaded with destruction?


Eh, not really. They don't play tOSU, MSU, or Penn State, and of their remaining six games, the "toughest" are Iowa and Michigan at home in back-to-back weeks. This shit might go all the way to the Big Ten title game.

Oklahoma State (10) at Texas: /squints deeply at Okie State

/scans schedule

Ah, their one loss was to TCU. Not bad! Shirtless Gundy, skate us out.

Real good. Or, as Ryan Nanni put it, "The graphics on the new Street Fighter are amazing."

Temple at Army: Less good...

Iowa at Northwestern: Look, this column's gonna have a lot of negativity, so we'll use this section to tout a stat that actually made me 4% believe in hope all over again.

The Twitter handle fits perfect.

Purdue at Rutgers: Boilers, if you want to be King of the Bad Teams in the Big Ten, you gotta roll in this game, OK?

Tennessee at Alabama (1): Butch Jones is bleh, but I really do feel for Vols fans.

tOSU used to do this to Michigan back in the RichRod days. But at least they're a bonafide blue blood. Tennessee is getting clowned by South Carolina; that's gotta be pretty close to their bottom, right Butch?

Me too, Butch.

Syracuse at Miami (FL) (8): All glory to 'Cuse for their W over Clemson -- even if it did include a full half of the Tigers' QB2. Dino Babers seems to have a good rep and definitely has a cool name, but it's safe to say any goodwill from the upset has all been erased... by hair paint. Flagrant hair paint.

Come the fuck on, dude. You're in Ray Lewis/Carlos Boozer territory (this is not good territory).

Said it before, will say it again: I don't know football, but I know hairlines. This is not good, folks. But, like all issues in 2017, consensus remains impossible.

And, because the Tigers are on a bye week, Clemson Tom goes here:

Yeah, we lost. Got our butts handed to us, honestly. Kelly Bryant came into the game injured; in my opinion, he shouldn’t have played. He ended up getting knocked out of the game with a concussion. Still, no excuse to lose to Syracuse.

All this being said, this is Clemson’s third loss in three seasons. So for all the haters out there, let’s compare teams -- wait, you don’t want to. You and I both know Clemson is the better program. Yeah, we lost one game we shouldn’t have. I’ll bet my Roth IRA and 401K that your team also has also done the same. We’ll bounce back like I know we will, and you haters will be back hating as usual. I wouldn’t want it any other way.

This week is our bye week, so GT, get ready, 'cause you have a night game in Death Valley!!

* * *

Miami, meanwhile, had issues on the lower part of the Coach Face.

North Carolina at Virginia Tech (14): NORTH CAROLINA


Indiana at Michigan State (18): Y'all are so done in this MSU over/under projection...

Emrck68: 3
Shiftyz06: 4
Dip-Shit: 1
Calvin Poolidge: 6
Scratch Where It Itches: 6
MdHawkeye: 5
Xarin: 4
Captain America: 5
IowaPharmer: 5

Hollywood Hawk Hogan: 5.5

...and then there were three.

UCF (20) at Navy: 

Arizona State at Utah: You bros are my bros for a long time after that one.

Illinois at Minnesota: Was gonna say this Fleck video comprehensively represents both Minnesota and Illinois, but... really, only the back half represents Illinois.

Oklahoma (9) at Kansas State: Sooners...

Not exactly impressed by the "planted flag on a neutral site OOH SO EDGY" thing. I mean, keep doing it, if you want. Do you. But let's not let neutral site flag planting become a whole controversial thing. It's not divisive... just a little goofy.

South Florida (16) at Tulane: Ooh, if USF wins out, they play UCF to end the season. I'm all in on that.

LSU (24) at Ole Miss: Gotta give equal time to the shirtless coaches...

Michigan (19) at Penn State (2): 

...oh god, is this the Game of the Week? This isn't the Game of Anything. It's the banana boys, you see. This is the best thing that's happened to Michigan this season:

Ah, you think I'm joking.

That was the second best thing.

USC (11) at Notre Dame (13): I outsourced this preview to ND fan/my buddy Z.W. Martin (of The Bet fame).

Larry Smith, John Robinson, Paul Hacket. These are my people. These three gentlemen of failure were also the head coaches of USC prior to Pete Carrol. A stretch where the Irish went 10-3-1 against the Trojans. (Plus, four straight Irish wins before good old Larry took over.)

In the first season of the Bush did 9/11 guy, it seemed to be more of the same. USC went 6-6 and lost to an unranked Irish team, 27-16. The Trojans ran a lot of I-formation that game. It was boring and Notre Dame controlled the game from first-to-last whistle. As a 15-year-old boy peaking in my insecurity masked as smugness, I maybe questioned the idea of this as a real "rivalry." I hadn't really lived. College football was still pure. It had yet to pull me into the darkness

Then 2002 happened.

The Trojans and their Cali swag and cool coach and dope 5-star studs would rip off eight straight victories over the shitty af Catholic nobodies from Indiana. Bob Davie*, Tyrone Willingham, Charlie Weis. These are not my people.

Since then, the Trojans have become the barometer for a successful Irish season. Outside of Brian Kelly's first year, when the Irish beat the Trojans, they average over 10 wins. When they don't, just under seven. It's the way to tell if Notre Dame is who we thought they were -- or a team who will disappoint me later in the year. (Nihilism Wow!)

This year is no different.

USC is that super athletic kid in junior high who, after touching his first boob, quits sports and gets really into the guitar for a few years. Then finds Jesus. Then gets into drugs. Then finds Jesus again. And, then, picks up sports once again only to lead his football, basketball, and lacrosse team in scoring. [ed- what kid is that?!]

Last week against Utah is a microcosm of this team and their QB, Sam Darnold. In the first half, the Trojans were just getting done with a coke-fueled weekend in Vegas, as Darnold fumbled the ball three times and USC was only able to put together one scoring drive.

Then Sam found Jesus and fucking quarterbacked. USC would score touchdowns on three of their next four possessions on drives lasting 98, 88, and 93 yards, respectively. Their defense also decided to show up, holding Utah to just one score in the second half. They suddenly looked like the team that won eight straight games last year and not the 2017 version of a drunk 40-something bachelor who wakes up alone with a dollar in his pocket and claims the night a victory.

OK, this got long.... the Irish have the best O-line in football, probably the second best running QB this side of Lamar Jackson, a couple of NFL running backs, and a defense that's allowed one rushing TD all season. They also can't throw, don't have a big play wideout (or really anyone who gets consistent separation), and, including Georgia, haven't faced an offense this fast.

Look, what I'm saying is this: both teams suck and whomever wins will probably still lose another game, making this shit meaningless anyway.

Regardless, like years prior, it will be THE test for both squads as far as the Pretender Trophy goes. Let's hope the Irish can hold off from carrying that shit for one more week.

(* - Bob Davie was fired after 2001, but his soiled-diaper legacy lived on for years on Notre Dame's roster)

Kansas at TCU (4): After complaining about TCU being boring for no reason last week, I'm ready to walk that back. For I did not realize TCU's QB was former Hybrid fav/Texas A&M failed Johnny Football successor, Kenny Trill. So yeah, we can roll with TCU for the time being.

Note: with me on board, this is probably the beginning of the end.

Arizona at California: GUHHHHHHHHHHHHH

If that's not the physical manifestation of "Today, ain't yo' day", I don't know what is.

* * *

Also, I did not know Rhett Rodriguez played QB for Arizona, but this is some top notch self-deprecation:

Colorado at Washington State (15): But, but...


...butt. PJ Kendall, can you put this into West Coast terms?


Wrapping It Up...

Nick Offerman gets the last word, proving it's OK to let emotions get the best of us.

Bobby Loesch is a weekly contributor to Go Iowa Awesome. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy or email to bobbyloesch [at]

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