Before we get to wimp central and the rest of our NFL lineup, this update from the Happiest Place on Earth.
A fight broke out at Disney World the other day when a shuttle bus driver had to inform a guy that there was no more room for him on the bus, and the father responded like any psycho — by lunging at the driver’s neck. Claims of the father actually tossed his infant daughter at the driver have not been verified but I believe it has been determined that the man is a direct descendant of Scrooge McDuck, or possibly Jim Mora.
Which leads me back to the NFL. I miss the old days, like when Dick Butkus was saying, “When I played pro football, I never set out to hurt anyone deliberately, unless it was, you know, important, like a league game or something,” instead of Roger Goodell saying, “Really! Must you boys push so much? Sebastien! Fetch my overcoat. I’m late for Cats! I do so loooove Rum Tum Tugger!”
The NFL fined three players this week for “dangerous” hits. Never mind that “dangerous” hits are a big reason the league has $20.5 billion in TV contracts, at least until somebody forms a new league, “Psycho Disney Dads.” (The teams could be broken down by states and countries. I’m liking a France vs. New Jersey final.)
Where was I? So the NFL not only cultivates violence, it sells it. It took 12 seconds before NFL.com was selling photos of James Harrison’s hit on Mohamed Massaquoi. They yanked it when people starting using words like hypocrisy.
This week, Dunta Robinson ($50,000 lighter) and your less violent Falcons play host to Pacman Jones and Chad Ochocinco and the rest of the Cincinnati nut parade. The Falcons really stunk in Philly. Fact is, they should’ve been fined $50,000 for NOT hitting anybody. But at home, they generally rule.
Cover your eyes, Roger. This could get barbaric. Falcons cover 3 1/2.
Dogs and Cats: The Bulldogs are like 10-year-olds visiting the SEC’s three campuses in WonkaLand: Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Kentucky (2-8 combined). Hey, win this and at least it affirms they’re not Tennessee, Vanderbilt or Kentucky, and before this season is over they can grow into something more attractive than an Oompa Loompa. Dogs win and cover 3½.
Jackets at Clemson: Win this and the Virginia Tech game in two weeks will have significant ACC ramifications. Lose this and the goal becomes to avoid Shreveport (new Independence Bowl match-up: ACC No. 7 vs. Mountain West No. 3). But for what it’s worth, Paul Johnson is 3-0 against coaches named Dabo. Take the 5½ but Tech wins a mild upset.
The Unbeatens Bowl: Auburn’s last loss came to the team that won the national championship (Alabama). So I guess this means Gene Chizik doesn’t stink. It also helps that Tigers quarterback Cam Newton has come a long way since running the option play with a stolen laptop. Researchers at MIT haven’t determined how LSU is still unbeaten. No reason to now: Auburn wins (but take LSU and 6).
South Carolina at Vanderbilt: If 1-2 Vanderbilt wins out, it’s in the SEC title game. OK, not going to happen. But after South Carolina beat Alabama one week and lost to Kentucky the next, is anybody issuing guarantees? On a related note, Steve Spurrier is rooming with Cheswick and Martini but is said to be doing very well with finger paints this week. Roosters cover 12.
Mississippi at Arkansas: Bobby Petrino was called a “coward” and a “gutless bastard” by former Falcons defensive coordinator, Mike Zimmer. If you see Zimmer this weekend with Cincinnati, buy him dinner. Or a drink. Or a remote tropical island. Petrino laughed off the comments, then lied again and blew up Alderaan, a peaceful planet that had no weapons. Pigfaces win but take Ole Miss and 9 1/2.
Alabama at Tennessee: How close is Neyland Stadium to the nearest medical facility? Tide covers 16 1/2.
Georgia State at Old Dominion: It’s a first-year team against a second-year team, and that’s the depth of my research. OD by a TD.
NFL Snack Pack
Giants at Cowboys: Jerry Jones built a $1.3 billion stadium and now has a 1-4 grease fire playing in it, which is sort of like Custer cutting a deal with Universal and filming his meltdown at Little Bighorn in Sensurround. But at least Jerry’s crash comes with $12 martinis. OK, slight market correction here: Cowboys win but take the Giants and 3.
Vikings at Packers: Brett Favre goes back to Green Bay. By the way, for those wondering why he never “sexted” when he was with the Packers — hey, it’s really cold there. Packers cover 3.
Redskins at Bears: Jay Cutler has been sacked 15 times in the last two games. Isn’t this why left Vanderbilt? Bears cover 3.
Third floor, accounting
Last week (not so hot): 7-4 straight up, 4-7 against the line.
Overall (not so bad): 57-18 straight up, 39-35-1 against the line.
Lock of the week: Kwikset.
“Sack Schultz” Update
I’ve hit a bump. After going 25-5 in consecutive weeks, I’m 17-13 in the last two and now 73-32 overall in the contest (282nd place). Arlo Pittman (Atlanta) and John Reese (Seneca, SC) each went 14-1 last week. Click here for more info.