Between The Hashes Week 3: Foxes, skywriting and corn microphones
Each week, Campus Union will delve into the fun, the weird and the wacky of college football with a series called Between The Hashes. It’s a way to decompress from the madness of the week, and to find a few things that you might have missed.
Did you watch Alabama-Texas A&M? Of course you did, since it seems everyone did, as the game drew the highest preliminary television rating for an afternoon game on CBS since 1990. But the SEC shootout wasn't the only notable Week 3 happening. There were quite a few other adventures, from animals running on the field to people wearing neat outfits to Iowa winning a football game. As my civic duty, I've rounded up the best of the week in Between The Hashes.
Give it up for Nebraska
After the tragic death of UCLA receiver Nick Pasquale last weekend, Nebraska did all the right things to honor his life, demonstrating that some things are much bigger than football:
PHOTO: #Huskers fans with No. 36 banner and blue and yellow balloons. pic.twitter.com/sGBKFFamnt
— Brent Yarina (@BTNBrentYarina) September 14, 2013
Huskers fans showed some support for their own team, too:
Big fans of the 1991 direct-to-video horror film starring Phyllis Diller: pic.twitter.com/RQCozEB4iY
— Luke Zimmermann (@lukezim) September 14, 2013
This is frightening pic.twitter.com/f5D64OlqYu
— Brian Floyd (@BrianMFloyd) September 14, 2013
Students really stepped things up ...
Nothing against fan efforts in the first two weeks of the season, but students in Week 3 really took things up a notch. They showed some nice gestures, chanted, cheered and generally were just great.
Just look at Texas A&M's "Midnight Yell," where fans showed up to a stadium where invisible football was being played:
@SEC_Logo Midnight yell, 11:45, still thousands at gates. pic.twitter.com/AqQclcHGrh
— Ryan Rocha (@PedroJack) September 14, 2013
The Aggies didn't beat Alabama, but College Station was live. It's clear that A&M has gone all-in on this whole SEC thing.
And speaking of the SEC, Oregon's fans got a little feisty after the Ducks pummeled Tennessee 59-14 in Eugene:
Oregon student section begins "We want Bama!" chant as Oregon rolling over Vols.
— Evan Woodbery (@TennesseeBeat) September 14, 2013
This sign, arguably the best College GameDay sign ever, made its way on camera:
@Adam_Jacobi @HS_BHGP @PlannedSickDays @RossWB Go Iowa Awesome pic.twitter.com/uM8Bj8SFAy
... But maybe some people were just busy on Saturday
Not every stadium was filled with people yelling and screaming. In the ACC, Wake Forest and Pittsburgh's venues had what appeared to be more empty seats than people in attendance. Sure, the weekend is a good time to go to the farmer's market, get laundry done and take naps. But football season only brings about six home dates a year. That's 11 percent of Saturdays in a calendar year, or 1.6 percent of a given year.
Um, we are looking live from BB&T Field pic.twitter.com/6J8TFqrM4Y
— J.P. Mundy (@JP_Mundy) September 14, 2013
— Spilly (@IAmSpilly) September 14, 2013
That's not a microphone, that is corn
One thousand words:
When broadcasting the Cy-Hawk Series, our microphones even change. Iowa - Iowa St w/@jb8sy on @FOXSports1 at 6pm et pic.twitter.com/30XQp6u8Xu
— Justin Kutcher (@JustinKutcher) September 14, 2013
Best lighting goes to ...
ESPN, for its David Lynch-style red number in a prerecorded interview with first-year Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury. It really set the mood.
sultry lighting for kliff http://t.co/bDpWlmoGFE
— Martin Rickman (@martinrickman) September 13, 2013
Play of the week
There are a few nominees here. Bowling Green's blocked punt for a touchdown deserves mention, as does Ohio's kickoff that resulted in a Bobcats' score. But ultimately the winner is a no-brainer. The end of the Wisconsin-Arizona State game was so crazy that people still are having trouble figuring out what happened:
Childress says Dana's signs get "confusing" when he tries to get cute: "He tries to hide them and stuff and he's got little, small fingers."
— Mike Casazza (@mikecasazza) September 14, 2013
This week in skywriting
Troll on, Michigan. If only the Wolverines had lost to Akron, then Michigan State fans could have sent a plane over Michigan Stadium with a banner reading "ZIPS GONNA ZIP."
Yep. Go Blue. Above Spartan Stadium. @ pic.twitter.com/j0osLyrXss
— Trevor Parks (@YSUSID) September 14, 2013
The Memorial UGA I-UGA VIII Mascot Award
A fox ventured onto the field during Thursday night's TCU-Texas Tech game, capturing America's heart and allowing everyone to reference that hot Internet song that was so popular last week:
Your move, Arizona. If there's not an armadillo on the field when the Wildcats host Utah on Oct. 19, I'll be very disappointed.
Les Miles Honorary Coaching Decision Of The Week
This award doesn't always have to recognize a bad call. Sometimes, it can reward decisions that are just plain brilliant. Cal coach Sonny Dykes called for a fake punt against Ohio State, and it worked, mostly because Bears punter Cole Leininger and true freshman quarterback Jared Goff both wear jersey No. 16.
Every team in college should employ this tactic, since it's allowed. It would probably work at least half of the time.
The Ricky Dobbs All-Stars
Some familiar characters, but a few new stat-sheet stuffers joined the club this week, too.
Oregon QB Marcus Mariota: 23-of-33, 456 yards, five total TD in 59-14 win over Tennessee
If Mariota had stayed in the game any longer, his numbers could have been even more offensive.
Oklahoma QB Blake Bell: 27-of-37, 413 passing yards, 4 TD; 24 rushing yards in 51-20 win over Tulsa in first career start
Indiana WR Cody Latimer: 6 receptions, 136 yards, 1 TD in 42-10 win over Bowling Green
Pittsburgh WR Tyler Boyd: 6 receptions, 134 yards, 1 TD; 39 rush yards, 1 TD in 49-27 win over New Mexico
Northern Illinois QB Jordan Lynch: 14-of-26, 137 passing yards, 154 rush yards, 5 total TD in 45-35 win over Idaho
Rutgers RB Paul James: 186 rushing yards, 3 TD in a 28-10 win over Eastern Michigan
This kid has been the best running back that no one is talking about. James has rushed for more than 100 yards in all three games this season, totaling 493 rushing yards and six touchdowns through Week 3.
Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel: 28-of-39, 464 yards, 5 TD, 2 INT; 98 rushing yards in 49-42 loss to Alabama
Manziel might have put up the best numbers I've ever seen in a loss.
(And speaking of huge numbers in a loss ...)
Utah QB Travis Wilson: 279 passing yards, 142 rushing yards, 5 total TD, 3 INT in 51-48 OT loss to Oregon State
Texas A&M WR Mike Evans: 7 receptions, 279 yards, 1 TD in 49-42 loss to Alabama
And we'd be remiss without mentioning Utah State quarterback Chuckie Keeton, who piled up 249 passing yards and five touchdowns in the first half of the Aggies' 70-6 rout of Weber State.