By Hal McCoy
UNSOLICITED OBSERVATIONS from The Man Cave not yet suffering from baseball withdrawal and not yet suffering from football overload.
— Just in case, Justin Fields should leave an empty spot on a shelf for the Heisman Trophy.
The media Golden Boy, of course, is Trevor Lawrence, the Goldilocks quarterback at Clemson.
And before he was hit with a Covid-19 positive test, Lawrence already had one arm wrapped around the Heisman.
Now, though, he missed Saturday’s game against Boston College and will miss next Saturday game at Notre Dame.
Will he be penalized for that?
Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields is putting up crazy numbers, Heisman numbers. In two games he is 48 for 55 for 595 yards and six touchdowns.
That’s seven incompletions. Three were drops and one was a spike. His accuracy rivals William Tell and there is no telling how this will end. The remainder of the OSU schedule is Charmin-soft and Fields should have a whole bunch of Fields days.
—QUOTE: From Justin Fields to OSU coach Ryan Day on why he didn’t declare for the NFL after last season: “Coach, the NFL will come one day. I want to win a national championship with this team and I want to win a Heisman Trophy.” (He passed on the NFL and now he is passing the Big Ten crazy.)
—Nine reasons why I love college football:
(1)Michigan State was four-touchdown underdogs to Michigan and the TV experts/analysts said Sparky was about to lose his helmeted head. Michigan State 27, Michigan 24, turning The Big House into The Outhouse for Jim Harbaugh.
(2)Despite the fact the University of Cincinnati was unbeaten and playing at home, the majority of the TV experts/analysts picked Memphis. Cincinnati 49, Memphis 10 and sweet revenge/redemption for Luke Fickell after losing back-to-back game to Memphis last year.
(3)Even though Clemson was without likely Heisman Trophy recipient/quarterback Trevor Lawrence, the TV experts/analysts said Clemson would still win and, “Win by a big score.” Boston college led, 28-10 before losing, 34-28. Dabo Swinney must have peeled the paint off the lockerroom ceiling at halftime.
(4)The majority of The Talking Heads on TV picked Georgia State to beat the unbeaten Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (best nickname in football). CCC won, 51-0. The coast is not clear (or Chanticleer) for Georgia State.
(5)Most of the TV experts/analysts said unbeaten Kansas State would make it 6-and-0 against West Virginia. West Virginia 37, Kansas State 10. No cyclone showed up in Morgantown.
(6)The Talking Heads didn’t believe Indiana’s win over Penn State meant much and most picked Rutgers. Indiana 37, Rutgers 21. Hoosier daddy?
(7)LSU was a one-point favorite to beat Auburn. Auburn 48, LSU 11. The Bengals received a call from Baton Rouge asking if since they aren’t doing well with Joe Burrow, can they send him back to LSU?
(8)A couple of experts/analysts were conceding the Big 12 title to Oklahoma State before Saturday’s game. Texas 41, Oklahoma State 34 in overtime. Defense in the Big 12 is something teams are required to try to do before they get the ball back.
(9)And on Friday, Minnesota was a three-touchdown favorite to wax Maryland. Maryland 45, Minnesota 44 in overtime. The ‘Row the Boat’ Gophers lost both oars.
—To the surprise of nobody, Cincinnati Reds outfielder Nick Castellanos decided not to opt out of his contract. With $14 million already in his pocket for next season, why would he gamble on free agency after his below-average 2020 season?
The prospect of another team offering him more than $14 million for next season was zero.
The Reds still owe him $28 million for the next two seasons and Castellanos can opt out after next season.
QUOTE: From Reds outfielder/philosopher Nick Castellanos: ”If what has happened is a memory and what’s going to happen is a thought, you’re taking yourself out of right now. So in that case, every day is Opening Day” (Aristotle couldn’t have said it better. . .I think. My translation is that Castellanos didn’t have enough Opening Days last season.)
—To show how impressed the Baltimore Orioles were with shortstop Jose Iglesias, while most teams are declining options on their players, the O’s picked up the $3.5 million option on Iglesias.
Iglesias batted .373 with three homers and 24 RBIs in 39 games in last season, his first with the Orioles.
Let’s see. Which team let him go for nothing after the 2019 season? Oh, yeah. The Cincinnati Reds. Why? Because they had Freddy Galvis, soon to be an ex-Red when they don’t offer him arbitration.
Only five players with as many plate appearances as Iglesias’ 150 struck out less often than he did. No player put the ball in play as often. His .407 average on balls in play was the highest in the American League.
And that’s not even talking about his magic glove.
The Reds, though, couldn’t use him.
Iglesias took the high road when talking about the Reds choosing Galvis over him.
“It was totally out of my control but I loved the group with the Reds,” he said. “I was treated really well, but they got business decisions to make and I respect them.”
—Washington linebacker Jon Bostic was fined the equivalent of pocket change for his brutal and illegal hit last week on Dallas quarterback Andy Dalton while he was sliding, causing a concussion and forcing Dalton to miss this week’s game. What’s $12,000 to a guy making $6.6 million over two seasons?
And Bostic was not suspended — not for the season, not for one game, not for one quarter not for one minute.
Wonder how long the suspension would have been if he had done it to Patrick Mahomes or Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers or Ben Roethlisberger or Lamar Jackson?
—QUOTE: From former NFL scrambling quarterback Fran Tarkenton: “Quarterbacks need to make their team better. If it’s a bad team, they can even make a bad team better.” (Exhibit A: Joe Burrow.)
—Just when one gets excited about the Cleveland Browns, they do what they always do. They shatter your heart.
Then went into a home game Sunday against the Las Vegas Raiders as the NFL’s best rushing team. A howling wind should have been advantage Cleveland.
Instead, It looked as if the teams exchanged uniforms. The Raiders rushed between the tackles like a loose rhinoceros, knocking over defenders like bowling pins.
And the Browns executed themselves. The pass receivers must have received a bunch of Butterfinger candy bars on Beggars Night because they kept dropping key passes. Mix in some senseless penalties and it spelled d-e-f-e-a-t. Las Vegas 16, Cleveland 6. Clearly, nobody on the Browns woke up feeling dangerous.
—On the other hand, just when it looks as if fans should watch an old movie on Netflix instead of watching the Cincinnati Bengals, they do something unexpected — like upending the Tennessee Titans Sunday, 31-20.
Quarterback Joe Burrow continues to play like a five-year all-pro player, calmly hitting 26 of 37 passes for 249 yards and two touchdowns. He had no interceptions and was not sacked, a credit to the much-maligned offensive line.
—Obnoxious Commercials VIII: Every political ‘message’ ever aired. My TV is emitting a strange odor.