What do Janice Joplin, Scott Joplin and Joplin, Missouri have in common, other than the name “Joplin”? They all have less chance of winning the SEC East this year than the Florida Gators.
But only slightly.
Here are this week’s picks & pans, most of them involving teams that actually have fewer players in the hospital than outside of it.
LSU at Georgia (2:30, CBS)
Many jokes are made about how Mark Richt looks like Helen Hunt. But it’s easy to pick on Richt because of his feminine mannerisms and his inability to break out of the shadow of the elite teams in the SEC, much like the inability of “Mad About You” to ever break out of the shadow of “Seinfeld.” But what about Les Miles and his uncanny resemblance to Kurt Russell (especially in “Stargate,” where he couldn’t stop biting on the inside of his cheeks)? For that matter, Richt should be sharing the stage with a number of coaches with celebrity doppelgangers. Saturday, however the most important look-alike between the hedges will be Jawja’s quarterback. Because we all know that no matter how many yards he throws against average and bad defenses, when he faces any good defenses like LSU’s, Aaron Murray plays like Anne Murray. Murray may look like Dean Cain when the game starts, but when it ends he will be a dead ringer for Lindsay Lohan’s mug shot.
South Alabama at Tennessee (11:21 AM, SEC TV)
Saturday the Volunteers get a visit from USA, the only team from Alabama they have any chance of beating. Tennessee returns from Gainesville where they entertained the Swamp critters to a 60-minute Mark Sanchez butt-fumble. The Vols notch their third and final victory of the season, and then the curse of Phil Fulmer continues – the second-biggest current curse in the SEC.
Butch Jones Looks Like Sgt Carter: 37
Still Better than the NFL Jaguars: 23
Ole Miss at Alabama (5:30, ESPN)
I don’t really have an opinion on the game, other than a Bama win. I just wanted to point out that when Nick Saban makes that lip-jutting frustrated face of his, he is the spitting image of Bill Bob Thornton in Sling Blade. Crystal trophies, Mmm-Hmmm.
French Fried Pertatuhs with Crimson Ketchup: 32
I believe one fella come from Arkansas. Get it?: 21
USC at Arizona State (9:30, ESPN2)
The writing has been on the wall for some time for Lane Kiffin, but just how bad has it become? Well my source inside the USC janitorial staff was there Wednesday night when Kiffin was called into the Athletics Director’s office. The maintenance engineer put his ear to the door and heard Pat Haden shout, “Get your tongue out of my mouth – I’m kissing you goodbye!” This was incidentally also the name of a book written by Cynthia Heimel, keyboardist for the American rock band Rock Bottom Remainders.
Sun Devils: 23
Kiffin looks like Daniel Tosh: 21
Florida State at Boston College (2:30, ABC)
The Dazzler has his new Eagles playing well and pointed in the right direction, but he can’t seem to catch a break right now. Last week, he had the misfortune of playing USC fresh off an embarrassing loss to lowly Washington State and facing their biggest must-win game in nearly ten years. This week he gets Florida State. Last year, this BC team could have taken them down, but this year the Semis have the old steam engine flying like a bullet train. Call them “The No Luck Club” this year, not to be confused with “The Joy Luck Club,” a novel written by Amy Tran, the hollow-conch player for Rock Bottom Remainders. But at the end of the day, Steve still looks like Sgt. Slaughter – which is so awesome – and Jimbo Fisher still looks exactly like Toby from “The Office”….which is soooo not.
Double-Six Semis: 52
Snake-Eyes Eagles: 26
Florida at Kentucky (6:00, ESPNU)
Jeff Driskel had his broken fibula surgery on Wednesday. In the spirit of bringing back Gator legends to do a “Two-Bits” tribute to George Edmiston before each home game this season, Florida decided to have Jeff’s routine minor operation performed by legendary former Gator orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Pete Indelicato. Jeff’s funeral will be held this Sunday and you can send cards and flowers to the family care of the UF Athletics Office.
Since his Gator career is now over, Dominique Easley is free to engage an agent and he has already lined up his first celebrity gig. The job was thanks in great part to his penchant for dancing throughout each Gator game. As soon as he rehabs from his second major knee surgery in a year and a half, he will be a contestant on the new season of “Dancing with the Scars.”
After two years of an unthinkable rash of major and catastrophic injuries to the Gator team, following and concurrent with a mass exodus of transfers, sleuths all over Gainesville have been trying to figure out why the program has been so decimated with bad luck. After many months of investigating, Gator Country has finally found a man who claims to bear witness to the reason behind all of Florida’s personnel woes. The program was apparently put under a gypsy curse, according to the triangle player of Rock Bottom Remainders. However, most people know him as fiction writer Stephen King. According to Mr. King, in the summer of 2012, an old Micanopy gypsy was run over by a UF football player on a scooter. He limped to the office of Will Muschamp to get satisfaction, but was told that at Florida, they don’t complain about scooter accidents, they embrace them. Out of pure confusion, the old gypsy dragged his finger across a copy of the Florida depth chart and said, “Thinner-rrrrrr.”
The Rock Bottom Remainders membership also includes Dave Barry, Matt Groening and Maya Angelou, among others. Mitch Albom plays cowbell. When they were forming the band, Dave Barry pushed to name the ensemble “Stomach Contents.” But the prescient Mr. King suggested that the name “Stomach Contents” would be better suited to describe what Gator fans would feel creeping up their throats in late September 2013 when every starter on their team is lost to broken bones, shattered ligaments, exotic viruses, water-elf disease, bad vibes and exploding head syndrome.
I don’t know who Will Muschamp looks like, but Joker Phillips could fool Reggie Miller’s wife and kids any day of the week.
Gainesville 4-0-7-7th: 35
Mild Cats: 13