Sunday, April 1, 2012

CLEARING THE AIR: Who is The Southern Catholic

@thesouthcath Hi folks, I'll apologize up front for anyone who was expecting a rant about football, zombies or another topic more interesting than this one. But this must be said before I continue my new viral campaign and attempt to get some more viewers. In this attempt to increase viewership I've joined quite a view forums, blogs and message boards in order to kinda spread the word. Well, during this time most have welcomed me and thanked me for joining and bringing something to the table. Thankfully these people don't take themselves or me too seriously and realize that what I posted isn't intended to offend and step on toes. While I don't mid riling a few folks up, anything more than a good ribbing is and will always be unintended.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

ZOMBIES: The Top 10 Must Follow Zombie Rules


Ever since AMC's 'The Walking Dead' became a staple on our televisions, the "Zombie" genre has grown exponentially.

In my own life I've probably watched over a dozen or so different zombie related movies just within the passed month or so.  However, while watching these movies I noticed that not every one of them stick to the same rules and boundaries.

If you've spent any time at all watching some of these movies (all of these are available on NetFlix), the titles include: 'Day of the Dead', 'Evil Dead', 'AHH Zombies' and '2012 Zombie Apocalypse' you've seen  the different interpretations of what the dead can and will do to get a mouth full of the living.  Throughout the length of these films you'll see zombies doing things like driving trucks, using bait and running like Forrest Gump.

It's these offenses to this great genre that inspired me to create the following Top 10 list.  And, it's my intent that these rules become the "rule of thumb" desk reference guide to all works related to the zombie genre for the rest of time.  That's not asking for much is it?

Now, baring any questions from the audience, here's my 'Top 10 Must Follow Zombie Rules':

#10.  THE CAUSE:  The cause of the outbreak rule is one of the only ones that is subjective.  Although, it is required that the cause of the outbreak be explained in each and every zombie piece that is created.
Typically the reason for a zombie outbreak is the result of a secret government/military experiment or a new and unknown disease.  Nine times out of ten the CDC is working around the clock to try and find the cure.  However, there's usually none to be had.

On the other side of the coin, there are a handful of zombies, like the fun loving flesh eating 20 somethings on 'Evil Dead' that are possessed by Satan or some type of evil entity.  These are few and far between but they are a very valid route toward a good zombie outbreak.

#9.  THE ZOMBIFICATION PROCESS:  This one is pretty straight up across the board.  The way a person turns into the living dead shouldn't vary much from story to story.

This generally includes the person getting bitten or scratched by a zombie or being exposed to the zombie causing disease, agent or entity.  The primary exposure is then followed by a period of sickness, fever or some other type of symptom that indicates that the person is not going to recover with a couple aspirin and a good night's sleep.

And, of course in the next phase the infected/exposed person is then rendered dead or at least VERY unconscious.  Immediately proceeding this catatonic phase the reanimation process begins & the person "wakes up" as a zombie.  Simple enough?

#8.  THEY CRAVE ONLY HUMAN FLESH (mostly):  Zombies only crave the flesh of living humans, PERIOD.  Yeah, I know there's more than one scene in even 'The Walking Dead' where zombies are eating animals rather than humans.  However, the caveat to this rule being broken is the animals cannot turn into zombies after being bitten or eaten by a zombie.  I've seen this caveat broken a hand full of times.  It never works out well for the audience who enjoy good cinema and it never works out well for the story.

If we start letting animals become the living dead, the story would be 15 minutes of people being mauled by dogs, cats and squirrels.  While this scenario doesn't sound necessarily like a BAD thing, the outbreak would take over, kill all survivors and the credits would roll quicker than an episode of Seinfeld.


#7.  ZOMBIES CANNOT RUN:  I'll never understand why some filmmakers feel they've got to cross this line.  Most get this right, but the ones that don't ruin it for everyone else.

A zombie's movement can best be described as a someone who has slept wrong on both legs after those legs have been transplanted while they were asleep.  The virus/entity that's "driving" the zombified body essentially can only do the bare minimum to move around in it's new vessel.

The lumbering, staggering zombie that we all know and love is something that should never be tampered with.  They simply don't run, they don't climb and they can't open doors.  The exception to this would be if a group gathered on a door and over a period of time their pushing weakened it to a point of breaking open.

However, zombies can climb stairs, but that's about the extent of it.

#6.  ZOMBIES CANNOT USE TOOLS:  I won't rant very long on this subject.  But, let me say that I've witnessed filmmakers putting weapons, sticks, IV towers, guns and rocks into the hands of the living dead. This is totally unacceptable.

Much in the same way that a Zombie can't run, it can't pick up and manipulate objects with enough control to use it as a tool or weapon.

The last thing I'll say on the subject is that if a zombie is to have anything in its hands it better be the flesh of the living.

#5.  ZOMBIES CANNOT USE STRATEGY:  I can only think of a handful of cases where this rule has been broken.  'Evil Dead' and 'Day of the Dead' come to mind first.  In 'Evil Dead' the demonic possessed flesh eaters hid, jukes and played mind games to trap their victims.  In 'Day of the Dead' the "zoms" faked out, baited and lured their would be victims into secluded areas away from the group.

Perhaps this concept sounds good to some.  I think maybe it's just a way for some writers to keep the human aspect alive in the dead.

At best the only "groups" zombies can move in are loose hoards.  These hoards are commonly formed by a  group of zombies following a common object, sound or human.  They are not organized in the slightest and members can randomly come and go without any rhyme or reason.

#4.  ZOMBIES CAN ONLY DIE FROM HEAD TRAUMA:  This one is 100% across the board with every zombie movie, book or nursery rhyme.  Very rarely does a Chuck Norris roundhouse kick to the stomach deter the living dead.

An example occurred during 'The Walking Dead' Season Two mid season finale.  Shane puts several bullets into the chest of a zombie to prove that they're not human because a human couldn't possibly keep moving with such an injury.  He then proceeds to put slugs into the head of the same zombie, killing it instantly.

One variable that can be added is the method such head wounds are inflicted.  Survivors have used anything from assault rifles, golf clubs, crossbows and grand pianos dropped from a roof to decapitate flesh eaters.  And I'm fairly certain that it's this factor that makes zombie movies worth the time to watch.

It's the reason Hornaday makes Zombie rounds for a variety of calibers.  It's also the reason Gerber makes an Apocalypse Kit that contains all kinds of goodies that'll just take a zombie's head clean off!

#3.  ZOMBIES CANNOT DIE ON THEIR OWN:  There have been many that question this rule.  No one truly knows how long a zombie lives if it doesn't eat.  This is partially because the movie usually ends with either everyone dying or holding up somewhere with hope to repopulate the earth.

From the many scenes in the many movies of zombies waking up whenever a human passes their location, one can only assume that they lie dormant until potential grindage is detected in their area.  Since they're not having to support organs or stay hydrated like a regular human, there's no need for a steady source of energy day in and day out.

As a matter of fact, just about the only way a zombie could die without a little human "assistance" is if it walked off the edge of a cliff.

#2.  ZOMBIES ARE NEVER NOT HUNGRY:  This rule is the most fundamental so far.  It just stands to reason that when a zombie is spotted, if it's not currently eating something, it will want to eat.

The living dead are created to eat.  As stated in rule #6: a zombie can only use its hands effectively when it is eating, holding or ripping flesh.

On the same token, it's this constant drive to eat that makes a creature that only walks a couple of miles per hour such a persistent threat.  A human can trot along probably twice as fast, but a hoard of hungry zombies will stop at absolutely noting to try and catch the living.

#1.  ZOMBIES ARE NOT HUMANS:  Yes, while they utilize human bodies that once belonged to once productive members of society, zombies are not humans.

Zombies possess none of the former personality, thoughts, mannerisms or memories of the human the body once belonged to.

There are no emotions, love or reason inside the infected brain of a good ol' fashion zombie.

Zombies cannot think or process problems, they know one thing:  eat humans and snarl.  Again, referencing rule #6: even if a zombie somehow got a tool or weapon in its hand it could not process what to do with it.  The instrument would simply dangle there until it fell out.

It's this that causes some colorful conundrums in most zombie movies.  The scene usually involves some one's mother, father or some type of family member/love interest that turns into a zombie.  Inevitably that person is forced to blow the head off their loved one.  There's usually a period of time where they refuse to go through with it.  That is, until someone convinces them that the zombie is no longer their loved one. This is usually around the time that the trigger is finally pulled on grandma.

This concludes my Zombie diatribe...  Thanks for reading!

I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I did writing it.  If you find something that I just completely missed or got totally wrong please feel free to tell me about it on twitter ( @TheSouthCath ).

Also tag #ZOMBIERULES if you'd like to add something to this post


**This does not include honey

Sunday, March 11, 2012

MARCH SADNESS: Why Basketball Pains Me So.....


I know that I'm not alone in this, but I wouldn't wish this suffering on anybody.  I cannot stand the thought, mention or viewing of basketball in any form.

This isn't even to say that I don't like basketball, because I can watch a game or two if it's got a lot of hype.  I was into LIN-sanity back when that was happening & as a student at Alabama I went to a few games.  Hell, we even went to an Alabama basketball game during my bachelor party weekend.

But when I'm not actively watching an exciting hyped up game on TV or in the stands, I would be just fine if the whole sport did not exist (especially the NBA).  And I think this all stems from the hangover from football season.

You know, you spend three months from June to August reading all kinds of scouting reports, watching ESPN specials about college football & what teams got it "going on" as the kids say and then football season starts.  Then it's 4 months and some change of nothing but solid football. 

It's daily, you're at work, home, the grocery store or just talking on the phone, no matter what, you're talking football.  Whether you're picking through the passed week's performances with a fine toothed comb or hoping next week's opponent's quarterback gets deemed ineligible, your conversations usually involve the pigskin.  This is, until the BCS National Championship game (Roll Tide) or the Super Bowl, depending on your geographical location.  It's all over when these two games' clocks hit "00:00".

Then you're a poor little step kid with your arms folded, head down and sitting on the couch.  And there's College Basketball, your new step parent, knelt in front of you promising everything under the sun just to make you like them.

College Basketball:  "Come on, me and you can be good friends.. Tell ya what, I'll give you a sport to watch in spring time so you won't get bored between Bowl Season and A-Day! Whatdaya say?"

You: "Really?  Is there going to be tackling, touchdowns and chop blocks?"

College Basketball:  ", there's actually no contact allowed in basketball...  But! We do have games on most nights of the week, not just Saturdays.  How's that sound?"

You:  "Really?!  Will every game matter and hold the fate of the season in its outcome?"

College Basketball:  "Ummm... Not exactly, you can pretty much lose 487 games and still make it into the NCAA tournament and win the National Championship...  Oh hey, here's one for ya.  We have a playoff!  No more BCS, each team has an equal shot at getting to the big dance.  No team is punished for losing a couple of games."

You:  "Ooh?  That does sound kinda fun....  Well, does the SEC still dominate when it comes playoff and championship time?"

College Basketball: "Well sweetie.. ha haaa.. funny story....  The Big Ten & The Big East pretty much dominate every year in College Basketba.....  Hey, where ya going?!"


This is the the point in the conversation where you storm out crying, run to your room and lock the door.  You get the point.

Keep in mind, I hold nothing against my friends and family who enjoy a little punkin' chunkin'.  I often tell them how envious I am that they've got a sport they enjoy that lasts through April.  I just can't seem to open up to it no matter how hard I try.  I even made a bracket one year for the NCAA tournament.  I of course failed miserably because I couldn't get used to phrases like "Duke Wins" or  "Vandy tramples Bama".  Not to mention the little cutsie phrases such as "Rock Chaulk Jay Hawk" that just make me want to hide in closet until at least the NFL Preseason.

Lastly, I'd just like to tell my fellow football fans in withdraw that A-Day and most college spring games are only a month or so away (April 14th).  Here's hoping we can survive until then!

Monday, October 24, 2011

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: The Southern Catholic breaks down LSU v. ALABAMA

LSU vs. ALABAMA, Nov 5th 2011, Tuscaloosa AL

Many of you have asked me to break my ban on jinxy pre-game predictions for the ALABAMA vs. LSU matchup on November 5th.  As this is a game I’ve already lost a little sleep over, I was reluctant to do so at first.  But after a few nudges I couldn’t resist it any longer.

So without wasting any more time, here’s my not so popular take on the BAMA v. LSU Matchup. 

But not without a shameless plug:   "Just Buy the APP!"

Here we go:
To me this year’s LSU is a lot like the 2009 Florida Gators (Tebow’s last year).  They were the end all of college football.  But the truth was that they hung so many style points on opponents that it was very difficult to recognize their faults.
A lot of analysts and talking heads will use LSU’s entire body of work and compare it against BAMA’s entire body of work and draw a quick conclusion that sounds good and looks good but just isn’t right. 
1.      First we need to take a few games off the LSU table because it neither helps nor hurts the argument.
A.    FLORIDA:  This LSU home game does not help or hurt.  The Gators were on their 3rd string quarterback and were fresh off a tough home loss to Alabama.
B.     TENNESSEE:  The Vols did not stand a chance in this one and they too were on their backup quarterback.
C.     AUBURN:  While hanging 40+ on the defending National Champs should never be taken lightly, this game is not important at all in the LSU saga.  As a matter of fact, this may be the most irrelevant of their wins this year. (sorry Auburn, no hard feelings)
While in reality, judging how good the 2011 LSU squad actually is, is a lot like getting your blood pressure checked:  Sometimes the top number matters, sometimes the bottom number matters.

2.      Next we need to take the games LSU has played that do matter and decide which number matters.
A.    OREGON: Neutral Site, W 40-27, bottom number.  This is also known as the game that started all the LSU hype to begin with.  If The Ghost of College Football Past ever knocks at my door we’re going to find out what the big story would be had LSU opened with LA Tech! 

I digress!  The bottom number matters here because Oregon has an explosive offense but a defense that couldn’t stop a girl’s high school tennis team. 

LSU was not at home for this one and the Ducks racked up 27 on them before the game ended.   And had it not been for a couple turnovers and one bleach blonde honey badger this margin would have been closer.
Well why doesn’t the fact that no matter who or where they play the Bayou Bengals end up hanging 30+ on most opponents?  That’d be because of Mississippi State.
B.     MISSISSIPPI STATE:  AWAY, W 19-6, top number.  The top number matters here for exactly the opposite reason it didn’t matter for Oregon, because MSU & the fighting cowbells have no offense, but have a strong SEC defense.

While MSU’s D isn’t as good as Bama’s, this is the closest they’ve came to a defense that’ll compare to The Tide’s this year.

Many will scream, yell and protest in the streets proclaiming: “AUBURN HUNG 41 ON EM’!”  This may be so, but the Auburn that beat MSU was fresh off a scary win to Utah State.  Add that to home field advantage and MSU was bound to fall short, even if by half of a yard.

And, it was because of the Auburn v. MSU (W AU 41-34) game that LSU got known for having such a killer D in the first place.  No one wants to go back and see that Georgia & South Carolina also held the cowbells to similar margins (UGA 10, SCAR 12).  I’d even be willing to say that these teams didn’t have such stellar defense it’s just Auburn that has a really bad one… Yep, I’d be pretty willing to say that if I had to.

The takeaway here is that the Mississippi State that played LSU was a team that had their feelings hurt and was hungry.  How did MSU only allow the Tigers to score 19 when so many have let them double that?  This is a factor that’ll play into the big picture.

C.     WEST VIRGINIA: AWAY, W 47-21, bottom number.  Once again the bottom number matters because the opposing team had no defense or chance in heck to win for that matter (sorry Big East fans).

This is another example of how LSU has formed a pattern of letting semi to high powered offenses pound away at them on the road. 

Whether it’s 21 or 27, these scores are too high for out of conference opponents that are supposedly playing the best team in the SEC and the nation.

3.      Now we take all 3 of these games and compress them down.  What do all 3 of these games have in common for LSU?  How can these common threads and the numbers that go along with them paint the picture of how LSU will fare in Tuscaloosa on November 5th??  Read on!
A.    Like the Alabama game, they are all AWAY games (I include neutral site as “away” because if it’s not in corndog country it’s not 100% home). 

B.     Two of these teams managed to put up multiple touchdowns on LSU using their big time offenses against them.  Alabama might not be Oregon as far as speed, but they’ve got heavy hitters that’ll wear down a defense in a 4 quarter span.

C.     One of these teams, the only SEC team, held them to 19 points on the road.  And as previously mentioned; Dan Mullen’s Bulldogs aren't exactly Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide, but to hold LSU to a mere 19 points isn’t an easy task.  Just ask West Virginia and Oregon.

It is with these observations and my picking apart of LSU’s season with a fine toothed comb that I conclude that LSU isn’t entirely the powerhouse that many would like to think and dream about on days when Ohio State, Michigan and Notre Dame lay dormant. 

LSU is just a notch or so better than Arkansas.  If Arkansas had the experience on that the Tiger had, they’d be identical. 
And now, without further adieu:  The FINAL SCORE (but first a word from our sponsor)

You can read this and many more college football & interesting posts on The Southern Catholic’s Blog!


Wednesday, August 10, 2011


TEXAS A&M to SEC... All they wanna know is.... Who's comin' with them?!

This is kind of a follow-up to my post about College Football Conference Realignment, but this time it's real and it just might happen in the next few months!  Some sources even report some major changes possibly before the end of August!  Here's the link to the original conference realignment post....

QUICK POST:  After listening to a popular SEC radio show on the way home today I discovered that instead of my pipe dreams of all kinds of heavy hitters and video game-esque customized conferences, the experts foresee a different scenario happening to the SEC.  Here's just a little of what I think about.


Texas A&M: aka "Home of the 12th Man" is pretty much a lock for joining the SEC West.  Now, looking back Texas A&M has always been kind of the Auburn of the state of Texas, kinda looking up toward the Longhorns for guidance.  I've never really heard anything bad out of them, but then again, never really heard anything good.  I couldn't tell you the last time they won a conference championship or National Championship.  But I'm pretty sure it was a while ago.

Another idea that comes to my head is that if A&M joins, all 3 of the teams Bear Bryant head coached will be in the same conference (if I missed one, I'm sorry, I normally wouldn't be so careless with Bear facts, but these are the main ones).

This doesn't excuse them from being sanctuary to Dennis Franchione after departing the Tide just as he was getting them back on track, thus igniting "The Shula Years".... There's a special place in Hell for you Coach Fran....right next to all those bobble heads.

OKLAHOMA, OKY STATE & MIZZOU:  These teams were also mentioned in the possible move to the SEC.  It is my personal opinion that a team in the Southeastern Conference should at least be in the Southeast.  The only one I could possibly see being anywhere geographically possible is MIZZOU & we already have VANDY.   So why do we need another cellar dweller?

It seems that the sudden urge to drop kick the Big 12 stems from Texas' TV deal with ESPN or something along these lines.  Whatever it is, it just doesn't seem like these OU, OSU and MIZZOU should be able to join the SEC just because Mack Brown & Co. are a little on the stingy side.

SEC EAST:  Here's the tricky part, please feel free to chime in on this portion of this post.  The SEC East would inevitably have to take on a few extra teams, directly proportionate to the number of teams the West took.  So who would it be?

Will they go with my picks of Georgia Tech (personal favorite) & Virginia Tech from my previous post (see link in first paragraph)?  Would you go with these or in a totally different direction?

Would they go with what everyone is pretty much saying and kind of hoping they will go with: Clemson and Florida State?  That wouldn't be a bad deal.  We'd have Clemson aka "Auburn with a lake" in the SEC East.  And Florida State is kind of a like a weird maroon version of LSU if you think about it.

I didn't have a lot of time to post.  But, since it seems like it's more real than just something to talk about until September 3rd I wanted to see what everyone else thought about this.

So if you've got an opinion, comment, different angle or just think this will never happen and is all a big rumor mill to get us through to kickoff, just let me know!! I'm on Facebook : OR, you can just comment on here

Thursday, August 4, 2011



Welcome back!  I hope everyone enjoyed my twist on College Football Conference Realignment.  I'm sure you all quit reading after I moved Texas to the SEC.  That was kinda like Dale Jr. going to Hendrick Motorsports a few years ago.  It just ain't right.

I've been thinking a lot lately about how the reign of Tim Tebow, Colt McCoy & Sam Bradford or what I called the "Era of Quarterbacks" is now over.  Tim Tebow obviously being the best and most well known of these three.  I thought that was it for super human quarterbacks for a while until the great grinning Cam Newton came on the scene last year and angered but amazed everyone within a 2,000 mile radius of western Georgia or where ever Auburn is.

This has me wondering which was better and more memorable.  Is Tim Tebow more legendary than Cam Newton because he managed two National Championships and actually went head to head with Sam Bradford (who I would consider 3rd on the list).

Is Cam Newton's fly by night, James Dean-esque college football career more spectacular because of what he had to work with?

For me to evaluate this issue I'll need to have the first of many "Out of Bama Experiences"...  At first I thought I this would be painful to do since I blame referees for everything from a dropped pass to a traffic jam on I-59 after a Bama game.

Now if this were a legitimate journalistic outlet you'd see a lot more facts here.  But since those aren't any fun, I'll cut down on the facts and pile on the opinions of most SEC fans.  Also, comments on this post are welcome because I'm sure I'll miss something.  And I'd also like to hear other sides of the story.

I'll start with the teams each of these real life super heroes had the pleasure of playing for as well as achievements earned there.  And while they both played for Florida, lets just toss Cam's time as a Gator out the window and only talk about his stellar career as an Auburn Tiger Eagle thingy.


TIM TEBOW:  Tebow played for the Florida Gators during a time of prosperity.  Under Urban Meyer he'd get the chance to go steam roll some of the best defensive linemen and defensive backs the SEC and nation had to offer ( just watch the last half of the 2008-09 NC game if you don't believe me ).

He was given the nickname "Superman" and it was even said that Superman wore Tim Tebow Pajamas.

Part of two National Championships, Tebow was considered by many as the greatest college football player of all time.  Where would we be right now without the "Tebow pass" into the back of the endzone?  It was the least complicated of all his strategy but was one of the most celebrated plays on his highlight reels.  How else would wimpy kids playing pickup football be able to act like a legendary QB without being able to just toss a football sideways like a girl while yelling "TEBOW!"??

But besides Tebow, Florida was loaded with explosive players on both sides of the ball.  A one legged, blind QB could have won 8 or 9 games by just dumping it off to these beasts of the backfield and to the sticky fingered wide receivers & tight ends.

The fact that he was backup during the 2006 National Championship season proved what kind of depth Florida had.  These Gators weren't just about Tebow, but it sure didn't hurt having him.  Right Shula?

Possibly one of the most memorable moments in his career was "The Tebow Speech" which came after a crushing defeat in The Swamp at the hands of Ole Miss (probably the last SEC game Ole Miss won, seriously).  The speech featured Tim, teary eyed (shocker) and promising to his team, coaches, fans and the world that this team would go all the way and he'd work real hard and feed some children or something.

It's a shame that the last memorable moment of his college career was a close up of a tear stained Bible verse in the Georgia dome, but I digress.

CAM NEWTON:  Here we have a real specimen.  Mr. Confetti Snow Angel himself: Cam Newton!  Now let me get it out of the way, that even though I'm a Bama fan I enjoyed watching some Cam Newton.  I once compared it to watching the election results when Obama got elected, I didn't really want him to win, but it was amazing and historic when he did.

Cam Newton played for a team that for the most part was one snap away from being Kentucky's towel boy.     If the grinnin' Scamperin' sCameron hadn't chosen to transfer to Auburn the poor Auburn Family might be basking in the glory of the Emerald Nuts Bowl as we speak.

The depth chart on the defensive side of the ball was deep and rich with experience for Tigers last year.  This is  didn't stop many teams from putting up monster numbers on them only to have their leads brushed away and all hopes of a win destroyed.  Was it because of a mass amount of talent gracing every position on either side of the ball?  I don't think so.  The only factor in Auburn's National Championship run last year, as everyone else has already figured out, was Cam Newton.

Cam Newton's raw talent contributed to the Tiger's season so much that it even gave the fans and coaches a shot in the arm, and it was only 57 years too late.  The way that coaches, players, fans, pundits all road the coat tails of this JUCO transfer to glory was something the world hasn't seen since the Jackson Five and may never see again at this magnitude.

Much like being an intern for Bill Clinton makes you vicariously famous by association, being anywhere near the Auburn program in 2010 made you automatically a master of whatever sect of the football team you specialized in.

Perhaps the biggest example of this comes from Auburn Head Coach Gene Chizik.  Chizik has cashed in bigger than anyone off of Cam's ability to tote it and throw it.  From a book deal, to a book tour, one would think Paul "Bear" Bryant has came back in a Buzz Lightyear Halloween costume.

Much like an entrepreneur who considers himself a great business after winning the lottery a year into opening his first business.  By piggyback riding that #2 jersey, Gene Chizik has convinced us all he's worlds better at coaching than he truly is.

In my opinion its the team that Cam Newton had to carry on his shoulders for 14 games that almost makes him a notch more legendary than the great Tim Tebow.

It's funny that the last game of his college career had to be won by a field goal, rather than a grinning, diving somersault into the end zone.


TIM TEBOW:  While bad stigmas and off the field woes are few and far between for a player that only had one unsportsmanlike penalty in his entire career, there are a few stigmas that go with Tebow that we just can't overlook.

Tebow was admired as a golden boy, superman and invincible.  I think it's for this reason that so many of us wanted to see him lose, stumble or even get put out of a game.

We all got to see this during the Florida v. Kentucky game in 2009.  During this game we got to see one of the most epic "YOU GOT KNOCKED THE @#$% OUT!" moments in modern history.  While it's never good to see a fellow human being go down like this, we couldn't look away.  My only regret is that I wasn't watching live.  I was eating at a Mexican restaurant and got a phone call from a coworker saying: "DUDE! ARE YOU WATCHING THIS?!?" "TEBOW JUST GOT KNOCKED THE &$@# OUT!"...  Of course, I went straight home and flipped on ESPN for the all night Tebow Nugget-Knocking Festival.  And I'm sure I wasn't alone.

Honestly, I'm having a little trouble trying to find other negative things about Tebow, other than his beating of Alabama in 2008.  The truth is, probably his only fault is he has little fault.  And this makes people not like him.  I'm not sure why this is, I guess you'd call it human nature.  I think a lot of damage was done by sports pundits & talking heads who pegged him as a super man who could do no wrong.  We all just got tired of hearing about how great this kid was so we just started digging for things to dislike.

BUT, even though this list of Tim Tebow stigmas is very short... It can't end without mentioning his last real game of college football, and I'm not talking about the bowl game Cincinnati, because that game was pointless & wasn't worth the TV time slot it occupied.

No, boys and girls, I'm speaking of course of the 2009 SEC Championship game against The Alabama Crimson Tide.  In this game the Gators and Tebow came in expecting to be on a bus to Pasadena as soon as the clock hit double "0's."

Instead they were met with a defense that was like a brick wall.  Tebow's golden passes were plucked from the air like a fat kid eating monkey bread on Thanksgiving.

And perhaps this game wouldn't have been so detrimental to his stigma and legacy had it not been for one close-up television shot of him crying his eyes out on the sideline.  This sparked thousands of chain text messages, social media postings and even a demotivational poster that portrayed a box of tissues with a caption that read "Because somewhere, Tim Tebow is crying."

CAM NEWTON:  Unlike Tebow, Cam Newton has had his fair share of off the field troubles.

The most obvious would be his pay for play scandal and the infamous laptop out the window deal while he was still at Florida.  But, I feel like these scandals have been beat to death and do not need repeated and rehashed here on my little blog.  So, I'm just going to write about what bothers me about Cam Newton and probably most of you.

"All he does is GRIN GRIN GRIN no matter what!".... Cam Newton's smile is like a ninja turtle on school picture day.  The biggest smile in college football quickly gets under the calmest man's skin when mixed with confetti snow angels, crowd surfing and being able to practically escape any defense's advances with little difficulty.   It was once said that Cam Newton's grin could be seen from the space shuttle..  I'm not sure how true that is, but you get the point.

Another thing is that I swear I saw him through a pass and catch it himself.  This kid was so good, it hurt to watch but was even more harmful to turn away because you might miss something.  And much like Tebow, a lot of people's issues with Newton came from TV announcers talking about him 24/7....  When Auburn was playing they didn't talk about Auburn and Chizik and how good the staff and supporting cast were, they talked about "CAAAAM NEWTON!"  It did not matter what he was doing, they were in love.  I don't think it got much worse than his CAMeo on the sideline during the 2010 SEC Championship game where he introduced a sideline reporter to "Cammy-Cam Juice."  The reporter of course drank the sharpie labeled Gatorade mixture while the human jack-o-lantern pranced away grinning like a mad man laughing in disbelief that the "Cammy-Cam Juice" got drank on national TV.  To this day I don't think anyone knows what was it in.

Finally, the last thing about Cam Newton I can complain about is that he's gone.  I know it sounds crazy, but like I mentioned earlier, this is an "out of Bama experience."  I'm still anti-Auburn & I still fantasize about the NCAA dropping the hammer.  But, I had more fun while watching and keeping track of Cam Newton's year at Auburn than I've had with any one player in a long time.  Not one of my Bama fan brethren can tell me they didn't stop and watch a news clip with the big #2 on it or read every newspaper article just wondering what they were going to say or what he was going to do next.

Without Cam Newton we wouldn't have phrases to make fun of like "All In!", "Haters Gone Hate!" or the great "Where the good Lord be blessin, the devil be messin!"

And who can forget all those awesome Cam Newton jokes that were totally acceptable to say anywhere including church!  While most of them were just Chuck Norris jokes with the name changed, but a few were worth their weight in gold.

Also, without Cammy-Cam I wouldn't have been inspired to write this song, to the tune of "The Beverly Hillbillies" theme song:

Come and listen to my story bout a man named Cam

Gettin' paid to play, barners didn't give a damn

They's-a winnin' every game, even cheated passed the Tiiiiiide

They didn't care that in 6 months their program would get fried!

Pretty good, huh?  That's what I thought.

Anyway, that's been my sad attempt to decide which QB was more legendary/better.  I don't think an answer is out there, but I want to hear what others think.

Post your comments and let me see what I've missed and where I was wrong or just completely screwed up.


Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Southern Catholic Tackles College Football Conference Realignment


Before I get started let me just say this may either be the quickest and to the point blog I ever write or it may ramble on like a book about "alternative lifestyle" vampires...

As is with many other southerners, college football is a way of life.  Ask any southern male, or female depending on the state, what they're thinking about in March and they'll tell you: "The home opener in September."  It's no different in my circle of friends which is about 75% alumni and 25% people who are related to, friends with or are soon to be alumni of The University of Alabama.  As most of us know, and even though some of us are ashamed to admit it *looks toward Knoxville* the epicenter of the Southeastern Conference is The University of Alabama.  But, if you ask alumni/fan of another SEC school, they'll say we're just being arrogant, and they'd be right.

As a matter of fact, here is the exact order in which SEC teams are recognized from people outside of the South, aka, people whose teams we wax on and wax off in bowl games.

1. The University of Alabama

2. Florida

3. LSU

4. Georgia

5. Alabama Polytechnic Institute

6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 & 12. No one recognizes these bottoms feeding cellar dwellers enough to mention them by name.  But, I digress.

The subject of conference realignment has been discussed a lot lately by ESPN talking heads, Paul Finebaum and even Rick and Bubba got in on it back when it was at its peak last summer.

Here I'll go through college football conference realignment with a fine tooth comb.  But first, I've got establish some ground rules.

1.  We're only dealing with the SEC, Big 12, Big 10, Big East & Pac-12.... none of the other conferences matter, except for being some one's homecoming game and when beating Michigan in the Big House.  Although there may be a NAQ team I move to an AQ Conference.

2.  I will be discussing each conference as if it is in a different universe.  For Example:  I may move a team to the Big 10, but later say it fits in the SEC.  These scenarios are all handled separately as to not create some kind of weird 'Back to the Future' timeline.

3. Independents will not be mentioned.  That's what they get for being weird.  (The Southern Catholic's views and opinions on Notre Dame, coming to a blog near you)

NOW: Lets get started:

1.  BIG 12 (aka Texas' Conference)

I know the Big 12 is now technically a 10 team conference.  But lets be honest, even though Iowa State & Baylor are still there, did they ever really count in the first place?

So, Colorado and The Nebraska 'Huskers both parted ways never to be seen or heard from again.  Although I took Nebraska going to the Big 10 harder than I expected because all my life I'd grouped your "Texases", "Oklahomas" and your "Nebraskas" together in my mind.  So seeing Big Red roll off to play The Ohio State Buckeyes and Mr. Magoo's Brittany Lions every year kinda stung.

Back to work:  So the Big 12 is down to 10 teams.  And, I think we're all in agreement here that a conference must have at least 12, 14 or 16 teams in order to have a conference championship and to make this post more interesting.  But, a conference championship must be played and should be every conference's main objective.

Here's what I would do for the Big 12 to make them complete again and probably more entertaining to watch than before the "Buffs" left to go play hacky sack with UCLA.

A.  BOISE STATE: Newly minted Mountain West rejects who will spend the next 10 years winning enough games to keep a defibrillator near Lou Holts at all times.  But with the schedule and recruiting that would be available to them in the Big 12, they'd turn into a beast in just a year or two.

Picture Boise State and Oklahoma in Arrowhead Stadium, duking it out for the Big 12 Championship.  Or The Broncos upsetting Texas Tech in Lubbock.  That'd make ol' Tubby tuck them ears in wouldn't it?

Now you're thinking aren't you?  Boise State in the Big 12 would make a hell of a good Saturday afternoon matchup.. Notice I didn't say Saturday evening, lets not get ahead of ourselves. I mean, they're still Boise State.

Next in line:
B.  SOUTHERN METHODIST:  A lot of people will question this move, say it's a reach and that I'm just bringing back the old Southwest Conference boys to fight in the playground again.  Well I say you're wrong.  I think SMU is fully rehabilitated since their bout with the NCAA's "death penalty" in 1987.

They have all the makings of a powerhouse again, except for fans, apparently no one goes to their games.  This would change when the Longhorns came to town.  A couple bouts with Oklahoma and Mizzou in Dallas and fans would be wearing Mustang gear just like the old days.

Now, as of right now, I couldn't tell you what kind of team they are except for a bad one.  But, after a few years of Big 12 & in state Texas recruiting, I'd bet they could pull something off.  One hundred dollars says they go to a BCS game within 5 years of joining up!

That wraps up the Big 12, two horse themed teams that need a little boost..

2. BIG 10 ( The SEC's lady boy )

I hadn't originally planned on doing any movement within the BIG 10, but a conference that's home to Iowa, Minnesota and Northwestern could always use some work.  So lets see what we can do.

Since they've already got 12 teams and since we don't want Herbstreit's head to explode, I'm only going to add 2 teams to the Big 10.  They'll be ripped right out of the Big East's grimy little irrelevant fingers.

A.  CINCINNATI:  Here's a team that wants to be great so bad they could spit.  They've got the talent, used to have the coach and they're from an AQ conference.  They even played as Tim Tebow's practice squad a couple of years ago.  The only problem is that they suck.  And they'll continue to do so as long as they're Big Easterners.

A move to the Big 10 would do nothing but help the Bearcats.  Like all the moves, recruiting would get a "shot in the arm".  Popularity would skyrocket and having actual relevant teams come to your house doesn't hurt much either.  Imagine being used to Rutgers fans and their leather jackets and greasy hair all the time and now you're dealing with snooty Buckeye and Michigan fans.  Fans who've actually kinda been there, but got beat by the SEC of course.  Yeah, it'd be a boost and a welcome one at that.

And just think a few years down the road, people may be able to spell your city's name without having to google it.

B.  WEST VIRGINIA:  This one really doesn't take much explanation.  This is a program that's always one good recruiting class from giving some team a run for their money in the National Championship hunt.  Even though Rich Rod screwed them over, they've got potential.  And you can't beat their colors and mascot.  That guy's got a gun!  And not like the Miami mascot either, he's actually legally has a gun!

I'm sure Michigan wouldn't like their maize being flaunted by some mountaineers.  But I think After they paddled em' real good in The Big House, they'd quieten down.

This wraps up the Big 10.   Sorry for the fluff!  It was kinda hard to get worked up about them.


A.  NO CHANGE, just take away their AQ status and we're good.

4. PAC 12

A.  DRUG TESTS, this would eliminate having to watch baked fans and strung out players fight for the chance to get beat in the Rose Bowl or actually beat Tennessee and then chant "PAC 10!" the entire 4th quarter.  I got news for you bunch of barefoot hippies, Tennessee hasn't been good since Peyton Manning.  And he couldn't even win a Heisman!  OOOH! Too soon?!

That's it for PAC 12... They got Utah, which is about the only thing I could suggest, other than falling into the ocean and disappearing.

5. The Southeastern Conference (SEC)

Now what I'm about to do to our beloved SEC will never happen.  I hope that it doesn't.  It's not that I wouldn't like to see more talent and competition move into the league, but I think we're just fine the way we are.

Going West to East, I'll add 4 teams.


A.  SOUTHERN MISS:  Why Southern Miss?  Well because they spring up every so often and fool somebody.  They've basically been scabbing in the SEC for who knows how long.  Another reason is up until I was about 8 or 10 years old I thought they were actually in the SEC.

Southern Miss, whether we like to admit it or not, is part of SEC tradition.  Even as I type this, Tyrone Protho's arms are wrapped around a Southern Miss player's head making "The Catch" in a painting behind my monitor.  I don't know how many of you can remember back to that game in 2005, but The Tide struggled.  As does every other SEC team that schedules them thinking it'll be a cupcakes.  They may be a cupcake but you end up with icing up your nose and sprinkles all over the floor, not even worth the taste.

They'd have to get a bigger stadium though, that'd be a stipulation for sure.  If they played every SEC team away they might as well stay where they're at.

B.  TEXAS......... Surprised?  Well, you probably should be in all honesty.  Texas has never dealt with us very much.  As a matter of fact, with the exception of the 2009 BCS National Championship game where The Tide rolled em' like a hot tamale, Texas has a winning record even over Alabama, as well as the rest of the conference ( I didn't check the facts there, but I'm thinking they probably do).

Texas has the quality, the recruiting and tradition we want and have to have in any team that joins.  Their tradition alone should make them a solid SEC style team coming in.  They'd have to grow a defense and keep that cow off the field (I'm afraid that position has already been filled in the SEC) but I think they've got what it takes.  While this move would leave the Big 12 out to dry, who cares?  Texas A&M?

And isn't burnt orange a whole lot easier to look at than Tennessee orange?

Moving on the EAST:

A. VIRGINIA TECH:  This one's easy, they're made for us.  Frank Beamer's style of coaching, cheap tricks and special teams antics would make even a shyster like Gene Chizik wonder where in the heck he pulled that rabbit from.

You can't beat watching the "globetrotters" of special teams hide the pigskin in their shirt while they run back an onside kick.  And who can forget where they were the first time they found out what a hokie was?

They've got the speed, the talent and their colors and logo are pretty badass.  I hear they even have a pretty good D, which they'll need here.  As long as they keep Frank Beamer on the sidelines, they'll get a pass to come aboard in my book.

And heck, Alabama's pretty much added them to their regular schedule anyway, so what's the harm in having the other 11 teams follow suit.

Lastly, the Prodigal Son returns:
B.  GEORGIA TECH:  I'd like each and every one of you that consider yourselves SEC fans to think about this and not get kinda angry:  We're the SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE!  The Conference of the daggum SOUTH!  And the team from ATLANTA is in Another Crappy Conference over there running the tripple option with Boston College!

Ever since we lost them in 1964, there's been a hole that no razorback or gamecock could ever fill.  They're a team that needs to come home to momma.  No more of this messing around, playing Georgia once a year because you're in the same state and are old rivals.  I bet they don't even wanna play Georgia either, kinda like you don't wanna see that one cousin, but you've got to because it's Christmas.

Instead Georgia Tech needs to come back and shake up the east.  There'd be no free rides over there anymore.  They bring an offense that with the right players (which they'd get in a couple years in the SEC) would be deadly.  Mixed with a defense they'd have to score off a dealer in the "ATL" and you've got yourself a solid contender.

I challenge anybody to give me a good reason why Tech shouldn't come back.  They're in Atlanta, they run the triple option, they've got built in rivals and their mascot's a stinging insect.

And lets not forget, they've been gone from the SEC almost 50 years and still have more conference championships than Auburn....

I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.  Is it football season yet?!