Mixed bag of happiness and sadness, this week. Which is basically life in general, I suppose. People say you can't have sweet without the sour. These are the same people who say money can't buy happiness.
These people are liars.
Texas Longhorns (3-5)
"Dude. What. Why." - Me
Suggested Segment Soundtrack: “Bringin' on the Heartbreak” – Def Leppard
Two quotes from last week’s Misery Index (yes, after six weeks of writing, I’m already quoting myself):
“Texas is beginning to form an identity and it starts and ends with running the football between the tackles.”
“I think this is the toughest game left on the schedule not named Baylor.”
Texas was not able to run the ball. Texas lost to Iowa State.
While the ‘Horn’s on-field performance has been at-best unpredictable, this season, their off-field press conference game has been on like Donkey Kong, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Vance Bedford, the Longhorn’s ever-quotable master wordsmith/defensive coordinator, showed up to Wednesday’s weekly press conference in an understandably less-than-enthusiastic demeanor. Sensing his frustration, a reporter felt compelled to inquire about his mood and Bedford obliged with a response that keeps in line with his uncanny ability to turn the mundane into the conversational equivalent of Charlie Day’s WILD CARD moment in It’s Always Sunny:
"I'm always angry. I wake up every day angry. I say ‘Thank you Lord; you gave me another day to yell at my players.’"
The Horns are back home for a sporting match against the Jayhawks of Kansas, this weekend. It’s on the Longhorn Network, which means the eyes of the entire country will be upon them, probably. Kansas is a premiere program with a huge following so I’d expect a raucous crowd in the Frank Erwin Center on Saturday evening, as… Wait, what? We’re still doing football? Ah, hell.
North Texas Mean Green (1-7)
Introducing your no-longer-winless “Del Taco Battle for the Belt of Badness" champion North Texas Mean Green football team!
Suggested Segment Soundtrack: “We Are the Champions” - Queen
And the crowd goes wild! Okay, so it was just seven people. Only two of them were wearing green. Five of the seven were actually walking down North Texas Blvd on their way to a rare Saturday evening class (due to what I can only assume to be poor planning on their part) when they were grabbed and thrown into a Kelly green GMC van, which, as if its color was not conspicuous enough, further distinguished itself from the otherwise unremarkable world that is van ownership with a white stripe down the side. (If you’re imagining an A-Team style custom van, I’ve done my job.) Off the van sped, before dropping the somehow still completely aloof group of students some 300 yards down the road at the entrance to Apogee Stadium by a man who called himself “Rico Chico.” Witnesses allege hearing the masked man shout “WE’RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER” before peeling out (sort of, as it was a van), losing control, and crashing into a tree. The man then climbed out of the mangled wreckage, apparently unfazed by the havoc that had befallen his bitchin’ retro cargo carrier and walked into the stadium.
He was later seen removing his cape and putting on a headset just before leading the football team to victory.
Anyways, we’re not the worst.
Houston Texans (3-5)
The Texans bid adieu to their sweepy wittle QB and also to their losing ways, beating the almost always awful Titans by a score of twenty points to six.
Suggested Segment Soundtrack: “Livin' on a Prayer” – Bon Jovi
Now we find ourselves at the halfway point of the NFL season and the hapless Houston Texans are somehow tied for first in the AFC South. With a 3-5 record. I’ll wait while you read back through that. If you’re too sweepy to read it again, I’ll give you an abbreviated summary version:
That’s remarkably bad. But there's still a chance. A prayer, if you will (oh he said it!).
Speaking of summation (and super sweet alliterate segues), when I was in high school, I once endeavored to write an entire paper for an English AP course having only read the Cliff’s Notes version of the book that I had been assigned. When the teacher returned my paper it had “Did you even read the book???” written across the top in red ink (also known as the ink of shame) with exactly three question marks at the end of the sentence so as to convey the incredulity with which she had written it.
How is this related to the Texans? It isn’t.
The Misery Wildcard (The Segment Formerly Known As ‘Intangible Misery’)
Suggested Segment Soundtrack: “Keep the Faith” – Bon Jovi
I’d be more miserable about the Rocket’s woeful start if a) the season wasn’t like 283 games long and b) I cared about NBA basketball games played before the month of June. But the Rockets came into the season with a lot of hype surrounding the team – and that doesn’t even include the ever-present Kardashian-related drama that seems intent on seeking and destroying every last brain cell of every able-minded man, woman and child in these once-great United States.
Regardless, I’ve heard from reputable sources that they started the season with an 0-3 record, which included a spectacular collapse against the basketball team that plays in Miami and people in Houston were “totes sad” about the whole ordeal.
I’m an empathetic guy, so I’ll gladly share in the misery.
This week’s CSMI: 50
The Big XII
According to a rumor generated exclusively by this column, Big XII Commissioner Bob Bowlsby was seen confronting members of the playoff selection committee in the hallway by their lockers after third period.
“Do you, like, have a problem with me? If so, you, like, need to say it to my face. And don’t lie. Kelly said you have a problem with me. And before you say anything, she said she heard from Karen that you did – and you and I both know Karen never lies.”
Because that’s how adults in the sports world communicate. It’s true. I heard. From Karen.
There is indeed a lot of time left in the season and there a handful of big games left to be played, thanks to the conference’s apparently intentional, if not brilliant back-loading of the conference’s projected best team’s schedules. But the first week of playoff rankings have the teams of this sinking raft of a patchwork conference on the outside looking in, again.
And maybe that’s not all bad.
A Big XII team being left out – again – seems to work in the favor of expansionists, who wish to see the conference go from ten to twelve – or even fourteen. Especially those who want to see UH join a power conference. But they’ve got other issues.
Speaking of, let’s talk about the Perpetually Aggrieved Cougars of Houston.
I guess not showing up to things is the way we roll in Houston, TX. (Oh, snap!) Voting woes aside, UH head football coach Tom Herman isn’t enthusiastic about the undefeated, nationally-ranked Coogs’ attendance. It’s understandable.
So here’s the deal, Cougar Faithful: You’ve got about six more weeks with the man; get out and support him in his final days on Cullen Blvd. And these are indeed the last of his days as the UH head football coach.