wine by the color

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Let’s take a quick break from the cruise chatter to talk a little football…

While I was on the high seas, Rutgers came from behind to beat Louisville in a fantastic, nationally televised game that I actually got to watch, thanks to the availability of ESPN throughout the ship. My three NFL teams went undefeated for the first time all season (not counting week 6, when the Jets won and the Packers and Browns had byes, which I feared might be the best I got this season). The trifecta of victories included the Jets’ first win over New England since 2002, leading to this chilly post-game run-in between Mangini and his former mentor.

Good times!!

Thanks to the Evil Empire, I was also able to overdose on the hype leading up to The Game. I was actually glad I had no access to the Internets on the ship, because I couldn’t possibly keep up with all the pre-game coverage. I did manage to find this.

On Friday, the last day of the cruise, the weather was a bit crappy and the seas were a little rough, so I spent some time on the couch watching TV. And that’s when I saw the news that Bo Schembechler had died. Which made me realize what a true genius he was. He'd stop at NOTHING to inspire Michigan to a win over Ohio State, all the way to the end!

After arriving back in New Jersey Saturday morning, we made a quick stop to watch Crazy Nephew #1 play soccer and then headed to my brother’s house for two important events: CN#1’s sixth birthday and The Game.

The game was really, really good and I’m not just saying that because I graduated from OSU and the Buckeyes won (although that certainly helped). It was just a great college football game. If anyone missed it, feel free to visit as it will be in my TiVo until the end of time. The celebration at my brother's house was just shy of this one:

Sadly, there was no such celebration 101.2 miles southwest of Columbus later that evening, unless you're a Cincinnati fan. Not good times for the Scarlet Knights.

Sunday, I headed to the Meadowlands early. Hell, the Jets were above .500 after the big win over the Patriots and were facing a team with one loss. It felt like a playoff game.

At the end of the second quarter, the Professor and I were discussing my upcoming trip to Green Bay. I mentioned how happy I was that His Holiness was playing well, because my biggest fear was that he'd be benched before the Jets game in early December to give Aaron Rodgers a chance to play. We agreed that there was no way Favre wouldn't be playing on 12/3.

During halftime, The Professor went to the concession stand for beers. He returned a few minutes into the second half to find us discussing the Donovan McNabb injury.

Him: "Oh, I have even worse news for you. Favre got knocked out of the game and it looks like it might be a broken wrist and he could be done for the year."
Me: Choking noises.

That sent my fingers flying, with text messages to The Captain and my cousin to get the full story. Eventually, my cousin was able to report that it looked like a minor elbow injury and that His Holiness should be able to play this week and thus, more importantly, on Dec. 3.

I can assure you there will not be any similar fate-tempting conversations during the game this Sunday.

As for the Jets, strange thing - the game ended with 6:22 left in the fourth quarter. Yeah, they let the clock run down to 0:00. But with 6:22 remaining and the Jets trailing by 10, Mangini decided to punt from the Bears' 37-yard line. Game over.

Of course, we stayed until the end (which turned out for the best when it gave us the opportunity to watch the big dude behind us mix it up a bit with some Bears' fans in front of us), but a good chunk of the crowd was out of its seats before the punt hit the end zone. You know it was bad, because The Professor didn't scream at people to "turn their tickets in at the door" as he usually does when people leave early.

Let's review the headlines following Sunday's games:
1. Onsides Kick Fiasco A Lowlight Of Jets' Loss
2. Patriots Crush Packers 35-0; Favre Injured In Pasting
3. Browns Can't Get Grip On Winning


And on a final football note, I missed "60 Minutes" this Sunday (as I do every Sunday), but apparently Joe Namath was a guest and, during his interview, apparently expressed interest in trying to meet women for social purposes. As a result, women are contacting the television station to try to get in touch with the former Jet QB.

It's good to see that women aren't scared off by this...


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