Designated Read: This counts as news
• Arizona State 48, UC Davis 14. Thursday's nightcap was a cakewalk for the Sun Devils, who'll face three ranked teams before the season's midpoint beginning with next week's home stand against Missouri. Vontaze Burfict, according to the box score, did not murder anyone with his body on the field. This counts as news.
• This entire game should be filed under "whimsy." More factoids from that Kentucky-Western Kentucky fiasco last night: Morgan Newton threw three interceptions against the Hilltoppers, a personal record, including one that bounced off four players and a ref and should've given the other team five points just on principle. WKU had more than half as many penalty yards (120) as total offense (234). And Kentucky's punter was understandably tuckered. Now let us never speak of this again.
• We need to talk about the Gator Bowl. Or, as it will be known henceforth, "The TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl." Please enjoy this quote, which was presumably delivered with a straight face:
Greg Smith, chairman of the Gator Bowl Association, said: "We are extremely proud to be associated with such an outstanding company that shares the Gator Bowl's commitment to college athletics. As the country's sixth oldest bowl game, we believe that TaxSlayer.com further enhances the Gator Bowl's image as one of the premiere bowl games in the nation."
So this portends another dot-com crash, right? The last time a nation chortled this derisively at a new game sponsor, the MicronPC Bowl was in vogue. (Yes, all right, I'm omitting Beef 'O' Brady's in this argument, but that augurs more for the general decline of the human race as a whole, wouldn't you agree?)
• In appreciation, Nick Saban will coach in costume as GOLDEN FLASH SPARKLESABAN. Players from the Crimson Tide head ballcoach's alma mater are joining up with his current crop to build a house for tornado victims. No more jokes will be made about this, because it is a sweet and excellent gesture on everybody's part.
• Tears to salt your coffee. Austin Box's parents share letters written to their son.
• He might be planning an entire war on avian species. You never know. Joe Paterno has a solid understanding of bird habitats, and does not care to sample them for himself.
• Malarkey under center continues. 'Bama still isn't ready to name a starting QB.
• You've got none, you've got none. Wake Forest lost starting quarterback Tanner Price to a knee injury of unknown import last night. Price was seen icing his leg on the sidelines during the final minutes of the Deacs' overtime loss to Syracuse.
• In happier Sooner news: Ronnell Lewis will suit up this Saturday. • Weekend whimsy. See a list of songs you'll change the channel to avoid hearing this fall. Never forget just how bless-your-heart mean Mack Brown is. Oregon says to hell with turkey. Some Thursday-night broadcasters could use a crash course in foodie buzzwords. Miami gets all the fun boosters. Getting your school its own network comes with a rankings bump. T. Boone Pickens scores the quote of the day. Craig James sweats the hits. And Washaun Ealey is applying himself on his new team about as well as he did at Georgia.