East Rutherford, N.J. – I’d never say I’m smart or anything. For one thing, you folks know better. For another, I thought there was no way my alma mater would win in Athens last night. (When last my alma mater won in Athens, I was just out of school. And that was a long time ago.)
But I digress. This isn’t about Willie Martinez or Mark Richt. (I suspect we’ll get around to both these next few days.) This is about the Falcons, who are about to play the New York Giants, and the one thing I can say for sure is that they’re almost exactly where I expected them to be on the weekend before Thanksgiving.
I had them 5-4 at this point, and the only part I got wrong was I had the results of the Carolina games flipped. I also had them losing today. But I also had them winning the NFC South, which won’t happen, and finishing 10-6, which is still within reach even if they’re 5-5 when night falls on Manhattan. (Which is across the river, as you might know. And yes, I’m aware I’m not technically “live from New York,” but somehow “live from Jersey” doesn’t resonate.)
Before you ask, I should report that — as of 10:31 a.m. EST — there’s no word on the availability of Michael Turner or Jerious Norwood. Esteemed colleague D. Orlando Ledbetter is endeavoring to find out whether either or both will play, but I can’t see Turner doing much if he does anything. And how long has it been since Norwood did anything, period?
(UPDATE: Both Turner and Norwood are inactive.)
And that’s all I’ve got at the moment. Except for this: When last Kentucky won at Sanford Stadium, Prince Charles and James Brown were in attendance. (The year was 1977.) Kentucky would win 33-0 — the Big Blue finished 10-1 that year but couldn’t go to a bowl owing to, er, probation — and it was essentially a wretched day all around for Vincent J. Dooley. But one memory still makes him smile:
Dooley and Fran Curci, who was Kentucky’s coach and who had no great appreciation for the trappings of royalty, were standing at midfield before the game when the Prince of Wales was escorted up. Dooley said, “Your highness, this is Fran Curci.”
And Curci said, “Hey, Prince.”
I’ll advise if any princes happen by today. If they do, I’ll say hey for you. And I’ll be here to chat about anything — Falcons, Giants, Dogs, Cats, James Brown — until this one ends. Please join me, won’t you?