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Inspirational Reads

The Rankings are Out!

September 27, 2007

So, this made me giggle like a little school girl. Courtesy of Yahoo! sports, they have their weekly college rankings (link). I'm sure you see your favorite school in the upper tiers of the bracket (even you Big Blue Nation people). Feel free to scroll down to number 76 where you'll find my lowly Irish. Then please, scroll down further (as in numbers 77, 81, and 87). I like how a winless Notre Dame team is still ranked above the three local teams. I hope that the local talk radio idiots see this, too, so that they can shut up (Chris Clark, I'm looking at you). It causes me to giggle, still.

And while I'm publically fellating Yahoo! sports, let me just say that, if you can't watch a baseball game on the television, Yahoo!'s coverage online is pretty fantastic. I "watched" the last inning of the Cardinals defeating the Brewers last night (and thereby dropping the Cubs' "magic number" to 3). It was the only solace I've got since I'm pretty sure the SCrubs are trying to kill me with this season. Ugh.

By the way, I got over one of the final major hurdles last night in proofreading my book. I finished a 33-page chapter. Now I have a series of shorter ones leading up to the climax of the story. I'll try to get that done this weekend, though I can't promise much on Saturday since I will be throwing up with every Purdue touchdown (as usual).

That Was a Close One

September 25, 2007

You guys almost lost me the other night. It was pretty hit-or-miss for a while.

I went to meet up with a student for a little organic chemistry jam session where we'd be rocking out the instrumental analysis before moving on to organometallics. After sitting at Barnes & Noble for an hour and a half (after an hour, I decided to leave, but I was almost finished with the Get Fuzzy book I was reading...yeah, I'm one of those customers), I drove home. Since radio here sucks, I decided to turn on the sportstalk station. For whatever reason, the Fox Sports channel (which is in Raleigh...where my car was at the time) wasn't coming in, so I switched to the ESPN affiliate out of Durham. I caught it right before the break and they said "What's wrong with Irish football? We discuss, coming up next."

Because I'm a masochist when it comes to this stuff (for instance, I've watched the games this year), I decided to listen. And that's when it happened.

Someone on ESPN said good things about Notre Dame football. Someone trotted out the facts, and made good arguments as to state of ND football.

My heart just about burst right there. I was weaving and everything. I told Elizabeth that I was coming home. It was a shock, to say the least.

This coming on the heels of this dumbass' article in the IndyStar last week (link). You'll notice (somewhere around comment 65) someone vainly trying to edumicate the ND haters (which would most likely be mostly Purdue fans, given that it's Indianapolis) and the author of the article. As an aside, this article did garner Kelly Green's Asshat of the Week award (link).

The truth in the matter is this: Willingham left the cupboard bare, and Charlie dropped the ball getting his o-line ready. No one can argue (although, for some reason, Keyshawn Johnson on MNF preview did) that Willingham was a better recruiter than Weis. Don't quote me on this, but Willingham's recruiting classes were ranked something like 15, 45 & 50. The higher class was mostly built by Bob Davie who, though inept, did manage to cobble together some good defenses (which is how Willingham escaped Notre Dame with anything close to a winning record). Weis' classes have been 12, 3, 1 and projected 1 for next year (and from what I've read, looking good for 2009, too).

Further, Willingham went to the bowl and the Gator Bowl. Weis has gone to the Fiesta Bowl and Sugar Bowl (both BCS bowls). Brady Quinn became a first round draft pick under Weis. Jeff Samardzija became a top flight receiver under Weis. Neither were truly recruited by Willingham; Quinn was an afterthought while Willingham was recruiting Chinedum Ndukwe (they were high school team mates...the coach for the team told Willingham "You might want to look at Brady at QB.") and Paul Manieri recruited Samardzija for baseball.

The biggest glaring issue is on the offensive line, where Willingham picked up five recruits in three years. Well, there's 5 guys on the line, right (Center, left and right guard, left and right tackle), so what's the issue? In an ideal world, you recruit a new line for each class, that way if something happens and a player gets hurt, there's someone there to fill the void. That can't be done right now, and it shows.

This is not to excuse Weis from no focusing on fundamentals in blocking and tackling. He's admitted it himself that he's been too gimicky on the offense, trying to get inside the opponent's heads. When they got back to handling the basics, things began to look up. While the Michigan State game did not have the desired outcome, you could see that there was a lot of good things that finally were shaping up. Again, the offense was on the field for too short of a time, tiring the defense and also putting them in lousy position to hold off the Spartan attack. Special teams were, again, abysmal. I don't know what's happened to Jeff Price. He had one good kick and then...meh.

It was finally nice, though, to hear someone at the four-letter word saying a nice thing about ND (and not be a certain leprechaun-esque former coach) and actually take off the blinders and point out Willingham's shortcomings. It really helped to talk me down off the ledge. Now all I need is a bucket for the Purdue game.

Another Comic

For a point of reference, all of my characters have pretty straight-forward, somewhat common names.
As always, click on the picture to get a blown up image for ease of reading.

Saying Good-Bye to a Couple of Friends

September 18, 2007

A couple of people I consider "friends" passed on recently, and I haven't been able to commit my thoughts about them to this vast, wonderful electronic media yet. I use the term friends loosely--too loose, perhaps--because I did not personally know either of them, but over the years I had gotten to know them through their written word. Their books and articles and general publications had been influential on me in a variety of ways, especially when it comes to my own writing. I am, of course, speaking of Michael Jackson and Robert Jordan.

Michael Jackson was an English writer and journalist. Above all, he was a lover of beer, and this brewaphilia is how I came to know him best. He wrote The World Guide to Beer in 1977 in which he developed several terms commonly used today, both for the brewing process as well as style types of beer itself. He went on to write several articles for papers and magazines, including having a recurring column in All About Beer magazine. In fact, his column (along with K. Florian Klemp's) was the only thing I truly enjoyed reading in AAB since they revamped their format, and with Mr. Jackson's passing, I cannot find any reason to renew my subscription. On top of beer reviews, he also wrote The Malt Whisky Companion and was a discerning critic of those select libations as well. He suffered from Parkinson's Disease, and on September 30th, at 9pm (EST, I believe), a toast will be held in Michael Jackson's honor at bars, pubs, and common houses around the world. Also that night will be a benefit to help raise awareness and funds for Parkinson's research.

Robert Jordan was the author of the insanely popular Wheel of Time series. This is a series I picked up as a junior in high school...and it was already three books old by then. I ravenously devoured the books, sometimes reading them more than once (I believe I read the first five books three times). In the waning days of the summer between my senior year and my freshman year in college, I read all the books that I had once more, as a kind of finale to my childhood and adolescent years. And because I (mistakenly) thought I wouldn't have enough time for pleasure reading in college. It was in college that I switched from buying the paperbacks and going all hard cover (which I now do for all my favorite authors), because I could not wait for the year it took for the hardcover to make it to paperback. Jordan suffered from primary amyloidosis with cardio amyloidosis. Unfortunately, the final book in The Wheel of Time is only half done. He apparently dictated how the story ends to several close confidants and an "army of authors" (missed that boat, I did) will work to finish the book. It's apparently a monster, and frankly needs to be in order to wrap up all of the story. His books, especially his earlier volumes, were tremendously influential on my own stylings (I did, for a while, have a character similar to Rand al'Thor before I decided to abandon the whole central Christ figure theme in my books), and I shall miss his works, though I have been harshly critical of the middle volumes for being hundreds of pages of fluff with no meat.

Rest in peace, gentlemen. May you both enjoy a hearty ale and a good tale at the Lord's Table.

The Race is On!!!

My wife, the buxom and callipygian Boudica, has started her own writing project. She's been formulating ideas for some time in that sweet, little redheaded mind of hers, and now she's committing some of them to paper. After extensive research (this is where she differs from me, because I sit down and start puking words onto the screen), she started typing things up over the weekend. I'm not sure how far she is or what her goals are on length and whatnot (she won't let me read it or look at it, which is understandable, because I'm the same way), but she's writing.

So, now it's a race to see who can get their books out first. Me, who is done but is simply proofreading and preparing to send it off soon, or her, who has just started. My money is on the buxom and comely Boudica.

See, it's not that I don't want to complete this and get it out for the world to read and fall in love with. It's more like I want to do other things (although I did read a couple of chapters last night that I felt were really done quite well, if I do say so myself). Recently, I watched the first half of An Evening with Kevin Smith 2: Evening Harder, and in the very first little stint, he addresses the whole notion of writer's block and whatnot, except he claims to suffer from "writer's-laise" (or perhaps "writer's-laze"...I'm unsure which) where he would prefer to be entertained from time to time rather than do the entertaining. I'm the same way (except I haven't really entertained anyone yet, improv sketches aside, and even that's debatable). I'd much rather sit down and watch a marathon of Dirty Jobs where I can laugh, giggle, get disgusted and then thank God I went off to grad school so I could avoid having to do a lot of the shit work that most people in this country suffer through on a daily basis (and my hat's off to you, you dirty, dirty folk).

The same issues continue to hound me from before: I know how this story ends, so it's kind of tough to get into the tale. However, last night, like I said, I did read some stuff, and it was enjoyable. I really liked what I read. That might sound pretentious and self-righteous, but I was reading a certain passage where a character was killed and I thought "damn, that's good." I wanted to read more but I had to dash off, build some more phalanx, and make sure no one was attacking my alliance. Ah, the trials of online military leadership.

If nothing else, the buxom and callipygian Boudica's writing will help me realize that I should probably, you know, do something. Unlike Kevin Smith, my entire financial well-being does not center around meeting a deadline and getting something out there. Also, unlike Kevin Smith, I don't have two characters that I can just fall back on when I need--there is no "Alexander and Kenneth say something remotely witty...alright, what's Mike Rowe up to now?" Especially since one of those characters is dead. I'm such a literary cocktease. Or not.

So, I raise my coffee cup to the buxom and comely Boudica and wish her well and luck. She, like me, is writing for a niche market, but one with billions and billions of dollars poured into it annually. Me? I have a bunch of guys living in basements who look at a book, push their glasses up their noses, and snivel "I'll wait for the paperback". Now, time to get back to the editing.

A Suggestion for Charlie

September 17, 2007

I'm pretty much anti-sticker, mostly because Ohio State does it (and Florida State). The stickers seem arbirtrary and would really effing destroy the mystique surrounding the golden helmets. This isn't grade school; stickers shouldn't be the reward for doing a good job.

So, instead of stickers, might I suggest you bribe your team with cake.

Get a cheerleader, preferably a cute one (scour the campus if you must, recruit a girl from Pangborn if you have to) to stand in the endzone holding a cake. This will entice the offense to put the ball down there because then they get to eat cake being served by a pretty girl. No need for a bikini or anything, after all, it gets really cold in South Bend in the fall. Just good, moist cake. They can have the pieces with extra icing on them for two-point conversions.

For the defense, might I suggest cookies. Go to Lyons, get a fine-looking co-ed (for kicks, get one with red hair), and have her stand on the sidelines with bags of cookies. Make a tackle, get a cookie. Drop the running back for a loss? Get a cookie. Sack the quarterback? Get two cookies. Force a three-and-out, everyone gets a cookie. Force a turnover? Three cookies. Score a defensive touchdown? Sleeve of oreos. Don't forget the milk.

For special teams, go to Cavanaugh, find a comely dark-haired lass, give her some pie. Everyone loves pie. Touchback? Slice of pie. Score a touchdown off a punt or kick-off return? That slice of pie gets whipped cream.

Try this, and maybe, just maybe, success will be yours. And then guys like me won't have to write out suggestions for how to fix this mess you've got.

Thanks to Dr. Woller for giving me the idea.

Congratulations, Charlie...

September 15, 2007're now worse than Duke.

Duke beat a Big Ten (+1) school. On the road.

You and your highly-touted offensive genius haven't managed to put the ball in the endzone this season. In fact, your players probably forget where the endzone is. Well, not your defensive players. They know it by where the opponents end up, largely thanks to your inept offense putting the ball on the ground, going three-and-out and penalizing themselves for continued losses. Well done. Bravo. Kudos. Now, what the fuck are you gonna do to fix it?

I'm willing to split the blame with Willingham. He fucked the team up good, I know. He left a talent drain in the last two classes you inherited. We get it. But there's no way that your offensive line should be this porous! There's no way that Sam Young should look like he's in high school. Last year, he looked solid. This year, he's inept, like the rest of your offensive line. Don't tell me Darius Walker was the only person who could understand the blocking schemes you set up for the past two years. But you know what? You're responsible for taking what few crumbs Willingham left you in the cupboard and at least make something out of it. You've done nothing.

Stop being cute. Stop being cunning. Stop trying to outthink the opponent. Get your linemen, put them in order, and teach them to stop letting defenders past them. Teach them smashmouth football. Teach them how to block without holding. You had all preseason to do this, and you didn't get it done. Instead, you sat down everyday and played an annoying mental game with the media about the starting quarterback...who isn't even on the team anymore. In fact, in the past couple of months, you've lost two quarterbacks (three if you count Quinn's graduation). I suggest you take the two open scholarships and find a couple more offensive linemen with them. Fill in the voids. You've got talent at the other positions running out your ears. Find some linemen.

And then, while you're at it, take the linemen you have, lock them in cages and poke sticks at them. Deprive them of sleep. Feed them bloody meat. Turn them into animals because right now, a litter of kittens would put up more of a fight than your offensive line.

You say you're going to start over from square one? Good. But don't pull this "let's pretend like we're not 0-3" bullshit. Remind your team that they're 0-3. Remind them what it's like to play for Notre Dame, how they need to be proud to put on the golden helmets, how they're supposed to win one for the Gipper, not shit one for him. March around that locker room and give them the speech about what it means to play football for Notre Dame, get fired up, and look each one of your players and coaches in the eye. If any of them flinch, put them out on the street. I don't care if his last name is Zibikowski or Clausen or what. If they're going to back down from the challenge of playing football at Notre Dame, then you don't need them. Clean house and start over tomorrow.

And then go out and beat Sparty.

And above all, remember one thing: the fans turned on Willingham when he lost to Michigan, 38-0.

Right...the Big One Goes on Top

September 13, 2007

And no, I'm not talking about my sex life.

Today, I was trying to find the yield of a reaction I did yesterday. The product had dried overnight, so I was writing the numbers out on my in-lab notebook (read: my hood sash). I went through the calculations and discovered that I had made -0.9876 g. Imagine my delight at discovering that I had the power of a deity coursing through my synthetic hands. After all, only a god can destroy matter and make the sum total of the universe post-Big Bang come out with the negative sign.

That's when I actually looked at what I had written and discovered that I had made a slight error in my calculations. Reverting back to first grade (you know, when they teach you such shit like subtraction and addition), it occured to me that I was subtracting the weight of the flask and the material from the tare weight. Fortunately, it was early enough that I could hide my mistake from my co-workers and not suffer through their disdain. Of course, now I'm publishing this on-line for the whole world to read, collectively raise their fingers at the screen, and chant "Ha ha!" in unison. I'm a fucking idiot.

However, I'm an elated idiot, because when I finally put the big one on top (snicker), it turned out that I had pretty much a quantitative yield. This caused me to do a little, grotesque version of a dance. You see, for the past few weeks, I've been working on large scale chemistry that has frustrated the hell out of me because I'm not used to things crashing out of solution at the most inopportune times. Yet, despite these frustrations, I learned a lot about how to handle myself in these situations in the future so that if when I have to do this again, I'll be golden.

Now, to focus on that whole subtraction thing...

Connecticut: Most Definitely NOT Smacked in the Mouth

September 4, 2007

I think I've decided that I'm no longer going to blog about Notre Dame football. Instead, I'm going to blog about the ACC because, honestly, it's a lot more funny.

Take, for instance, the radio caller in mid-July who made the prediction that "Connecticut is going to come down here, and we're going to smack them in the mouth, and the winning's going to keep on coming. You heard it here first: Duke, 6-6, going to a bowl game this year."

Apparently, Connecticut didn't get the memo. It seems as though Duke forgot to read it.

That's when suddenly it hit me: the members of the ACC are just like the characters from one of the greatest movies ever made: Clerks. (Wow, consecutive uses of the colon). You might disagree with my tastes in low-budget black-and-white films about a day in the life of the average Quick Stop schmo, but I hope that you'll at least read this and enjoy the comparisons that are really spot on, at least from my point of view.

Virginia Tech: Dante Hicks. He doesn't want to be there ("I'm not even supposed to be here today") and he's surrounded by inferior beings ("Bunch of savages in this town") and yet he keeps going on, trying to do his best, not offend the customers, and get the job done. The parallels with VT are many: they're in an inferior conference, surrounded by inferior schools, and yet they go out, play sound fundamentals, flash out some superstars, and basically do things right (we can even say that giving scholarships to the Vick boys is kind of like closing the store to play hockey on the roof or to go to a wake).

Clemson: Randall Graves. Probably could be doing something better with his life, but yet he does just enough to keep employed at the video store. A slacker and consummate underachiever, he watches movies all day and leafs through porn at the Quick Stop when he should be manning the counter at the video store. Clemson does just enough to get to bowl games and keep Tommy Bowden in a job.

Florida State: Jay. Put your pot-smoking references aside, kids, we're going a bit more cerebral here. Talks a big game, but never comes through in the pinch. Does a lot of illegal, shady stuff, but doesn't get caught. As soon as Dante turns his head, Jay is stealing stuff from the store. Whenever someone mentions "Clerks", you immediately think of Jay. When someone mentions the ACC football, you usually think of Florida State.

Wake Forest: Silent Bob. Most of the time, they're just there, hanging out, looking shady. Every once in a great while, he speaks. Consider last year to be the football equivalent of "There are many fish in the ocean".

Boston College: Egg Man. He's going through life, searching out the perfect dozen eggs, but he can never find them. This is a consequence of his life having no meaning. When the ACC expanded, Boston College jumped up and down in the back of the room yelling "me, me, me!" only to finally, as a last resort to get 12 teams, have the ACC say "fine". Inferiority complex, anyone? Not to mention their golden dome envy of Notre Dame. In the end, the Eagles just smash the eggs against the glass door front and start to cry on the floor.

Maryland: Old Man. You know who I'm talking about. He shows up, requests a nudie mag, and goes off to the shitter for the rest of the movie until the climax. This is Maryland. They're relevant for a while, slip into the background and you forget about them, and then suddenly--BAM!--they show up again and play a critical role in the end by screwing someone while they weren't paying attention.

Georgia Tech: Angry Hockey Playing Customer. Shows up, wants to complete the sale, doesn't get access (read, respect) to the store, climbs up on the roof, pushes people around and slaps the puck into a sewer drain across the street. Most of these are based on their manhandling of Notre Dame over the weekend. Deal with it.

Miami (FL): Olaf Oleeson. The Russian Dude trying to make it as a rockstar. His lyrics are filled with violent and sexually-charged imagery. He's what the Seventh-Floor Crew would be if they had Slavic accents. You don't really understand either of them, and you probably don't want to. ("Did he just say 'making fuck'?")

Virginia: William Black, aka "Snowball". Likes to have his own cum blown back into his mouth after getting a blowjob. Virginia should probably be happy with just the blow job at this point.

North Carolina: Caged Animal Masturbator. Every so often, UNC likes to think of itself as really important ("We hired Butch Davis, and you didn't...and we beat James Madison!"), enough so that they look down on the rest of the world from their ivory tower. Really, however, in the end, they're just stroking animals for their seed.

North Carolina State: Veronica Loughran. Just like Veronica, they show up, act all sexy, pretend like the world should eat out of their hand, all in a sad attempt for attention because no one has given them any. They make a date with their old boyfriend (NCSU's version of football notoriety), only to end up screwing a corpse in a darkened bathroom and having to spend the rest of their lives in a mental institution.

Duke: Caitlin Bree. Sucked 37 dicks. In a row? Not quite, but they're getting there.

And one more, because they're atop the college football world right now:

Appalachian State University: Rick Derris. Sexy, fit, gets the girl, and can taunt Dante (Virginia Tech) with the notion that they've done something he hasn't: beaten a top-5 school on the road this year.

Wake Up The Echoes, Already!

September 1, 2007

Last season, I refused to wear a Notre Dame shirt on gameday. I figured I'd jinx the team (or Jenks them, as it were). This morning I woke up and said "Fuck that superstitious shit" and pulled the shirt my wife gave me shortly after we were married over my head. By the third quarter, just about the same time Jimmy Clausen was pulling off his redshirt, I was pulling off my Notre Dame shirt. That's it. I'm done. No more wearing of the green on Saturdays for me.

Here, before we go further, let me tell you my sad tale of woe for the day.

I had picked out my beers of choice for the day (Leinenkugel's Summer Wheat and Bell's Oberon). With giddy anticipation did I sit around and await the time for college football to start. During that time, apparently, something go into my nose, or something, and I clogged up and started sneezing and had clear, runny snot dripping out of my nose. I couldn't take it anymore, and so I dug around in the medicine cabinet and found...nothing. I had to settle on a bottle of children's Claritin that we bought in the spring for one of the kids. I took a shot of that (literally, I think that's how much it called for) and then sat there, distraught over the fact that I couldn't drink with antihistamines running through my system.

And, Lord, did I need to drink.

Here's a couple of things that you might want to go over with your team, if your name is Charlie Weis:

How to score.
How to stop the other team from scoring.
How to hold on to the fucking ball.
Special Teams.
Coming off your blocks.
Stopping the running back from gaining 30 yards on a play.
How to stop people running unabated at your quarterback.
How to stop your quarterback running unabated into a tackler's arms.

Did I miss anything? Oh yeah. Offense and defense. And special teams.

So, Charlie's third year (which I shall henceforth refer to as "Tyrone's Revenge") is panning out pretty much how everyone (except me...and perhaps the boys at BGS...and probably Crewcut himself) predicted. That was one of the shittiest performances I've ever seen, and that includes last year's Sugar Bowl. In fact, I thought I was watching a bowl game. It's almost like Tyrone was prowling the sidelines once more (oh yeah, and Domer fans (myself included), this is the last year we can blame Tyrone...after this it's all on Crewcut Charlie). Let's not practice tackling; let's practice clapping in rhythm so that we cut down on these false starts.

The offensive linemen got thrown around. The defensive linemen got thrown around. Pretty much the only thing that looked improved was the secondary...and probably because they weren't tested. David Bruton did look pretty good. I'll give him that. At least someone came to play.

So. There. It was a solid ass-whooping, sure. At least it wasn't a loss at home to a Division 1-AA school. I'm sorry. An FCS school.

But, at this rate, it could be worse. Duke shows up in November, and the way the Irish are playing, the Blue Devils could have their way with them.



Cheer, Cheer for Old Notre Dame! GT vs ND preview

Sorry for the lack of posts this week. I was dealing with a particularly immobile chlorine that I really wanted to get off my molecule. So, when it wasn't moving, I was just pissed and didn't feel like sharing my thoughts with the world, because they'd be, moreso than normal. I was going to do a whole preseason preview special, but, alas, I couldn't find my Magic 8 Ball (I was going to predict Notre Dame's season versus it and we could see who came out better). Alas, we'll have to do this week-by-week, I guess.

Anyway, today kicks off college football season, at least from my perspective, mostly because today is Notre Dame's first game (and I think St. Joe's, but since they don't have their own network, I won't get to see it). Unlike the rest of the world, Notre Dame is opening against a tough opponent, and the pundits are having a heyday. A summary of their comments is in italics, mine regular, unfancy, old unitalacized text. Whee! Let's go.

Notre Dame will lose because they only scored 14 points against Georgia Tech last year, and that was with Brady Quinn, Jeff Samardzija and Darius Walker! Now they have a new quarterback and new receivers and new backfield! They'll lose by three touchdowns!.

I'll remind you that Notre Dame opening AT George Tech last year, the GT crowd was excited, Notre Dame's ranking was overinflated (and thusly their egos). The ground game got it done last year, and they'll probably get it done this year. Walker is gone, but is replaced by a whole slew of really talented, really fast running backs. Samardzija is gone (as well Rhema "Dropped Pass" McKnight), but a whole slew of talented receivers are waiting their turn. Quinn is gone, but it's not like the quarterback situation is barren (i.e. no walk-ons playing backup *cough*Willingham-Davie*cough*). Even with Clausen sitting (hopefully), both Sharpley and Jones were talented, high-caliber recruits coming out of high school (Jones moreso than Sharpley) and both have had time in Weis' offense to be effective once the butterflies go away. Plus, Notre Dame still has John Carlson at Tight End, and we all know who he looks like.

Notre Dame's defense stinks! They'll lose for sure!

True, Notre Dame's defense isn't...good. Or wasn't. Corwin Brown is not Rick Minter, and Rick Minter's defense was enough to hold Georgia Tech to 10 points at home with stud receiver Calvin Johnson in the mix and Reggie Ball quarterbacking. Lest ye forget, Georgia Tech will likewise be breaking in a new quarterback (which is a step up, probably, from that shitstain Reggie Ball), but they lost Calvin Johnson, who basically WAS their offense last year. Notre Dame has a new look on defense, more players in the secondary, and a defensive set that could cause the new quarterback at GT to shit shamrocks.

Charlie Weis is a fat, arrogant prick! Notre Dame deserves to lose! Tell us who the quarterback will be, you smarmy body-double for Jabba the Hutt!

True, Charlie does have some extra pounds, but then, I'm a fat slob myself. The last coach was thin and rollerbladed everywhere on campus...when not hitting the links. And the coach before that wanted a hot dog, but couldn't get into the rotating hot dog vending machine at 7-11 (nor could he break out of a predictable ground game...option right, option left, run up the middle). As far as not telling the media who the starter would be, fuck 'em. Let Jon Tenuta stew over it a little bit. I actually hope that both Sharpley AND Jones come out on the first series and they pull a trick play out of their ass and score 6. And then Crewcut Charlie, Robot Genius, can smirk all the way through the game.

Sorry, but Chan Gailey's squad has been perrenial underachievers in an underachieving conference. Yeah, they went to the championship game in the ACC last year because the ACC had 12 teams with the ferocity of a litter of kittens. The coaching might rests heavily on Notre Dame's side, and not just because Charlie is equal to about three Chan Gaileys. Ever see Charlie's assorted collection of rings? Chan? Not so much.

Prediction: ND 27, GT 17.