five from si - why college football is awesome: week 3

By Simon Carroll

How do you know until you’ve tried it? Si scours week 3 for five reasons why you should be tuning in on Saturdays…

Friday Night, Carolina Lights


Nowhere else to start but in Winston Salem folks. College football on a Friday evening is a beautiful thing – especially when Pat McAfee is in the broadcast booth. And when it’s a contest as packed with entertainment as this one then it’s even better. Residing in the same state, Wake Forest and North Carolina are traditional enemies that have been separated into separate divisions in the ACC. They weren’t scheduled to face each other in 2019 so they thought they’d organise a non-conference game between themselves anyway. An excellent way to stick it to the ACC powers that be. Anyway – I digress…

Two teams unbeaten to start the year. Wake Forest punching above their weight ever since Dave Clawsen rode into town, and North Carolina with the feel good factor back after Tar Heel legend Mack Brown returned to Chapel Hill. UNC had already turned heads with two big wins over South Carolina & Miami, and both programs sport some sneaky potential NFL talent amongst their ranks. In terms of game action, Wake Forest’s Sage Surratt stole the show, clocking up 169 yards and a score on just 9 touches. This against his elder brother Chazz, who was playing linebacker for the other team. But more about the contest later. First, check out this bit of athleticism from the referee!

The zebras weren’t the only ones head over heels with this battle. The Demon Deacons (epic nickname alert) blasted out to a three score lead and were comfortable until the fourth quarter where, it appears, the Tar Heels decided to wake up. This isn’t a new phenomena for UNC – both their previous games featured fourth quarter comebacks behind the arm of freshman QB Sam Howell. North Carolina scored 15 unanswered points to bring the game to within a score. For one proud alumn, it was just too much to take:

I hope that wasn’t your dad.

Sadly, a third comeback in a row was out of reach for the Tar Heels amidst a juicy bit of controversy to finish the game. With the clock running out Howell hit a receiver across the middle who valiantly got out of bounds. The referees though the game clock had hit zeros but replays suggested otherwise and Mack Brown was furious:

You see, THIS is what VAR has eliminated in soccer. Big props to the state of North Carolina – you set the tone for the rest of week three.

Above And Beyond The Call Of Duty

CFB Week 3

Mississippi State Freshman Quarterback Garrett Shrader had a proper introduction to college football on Saturday. With just garbage time duty under his belt the previous week, Shrader was thrust into action after The Bulldogs benched Tommy Sevens against Kansas State. Down a touchdown and facing a 4th and sixteen with less than three minutes remaining, he breaks contain and scrambles for the line to gain. Realising he’s going to be stopped short he attempts to dive over two defenders in a valiant attempt to extend the game. Spoiler alert – he doesn’t make it. And he’s damn lucky he was able to walk off the field after. This is so brutal we’re gonna need two camera angles to fully appreciate the carnage:

If you’re not helicoptering, you just ain’t trying hard enough.

Ohio State Taking THE Mickey

CFB UK TV Games Week 6

Anybody who has watched Monday Night Football and seen the players announce themselves and their former seats of learning will know that Ohio State alumni have a superiority complex. Buckeyes enjoy adding an accentuated “THE” before Ohio State, as if to emphasise the significance of the school and highlight the privilege of attending such an important institution. The tradition began sometime during the 1990’s and is, quite simply, self indulgent nonsense. If you’re unsure what I’m talking about, let Santonio Holmes explain:

It seems this narcissism has gone to the Buckeye’s heads. Apparently, they tried to trademark the word “The”. Yeah – let that sink in. One of the most commonly used words in the English language – the word the is a determiner which is pretty much necessary for any communication whereby you are referencing something. And Ohio State wanted to trademark it because their former students like to say it in a dramatic manner. Needless to say, The United States Patent & Trademark Office denied their application. They don’t want to pay student athletes for image rights but they’ve got money to waste trying to claim THE for themselves? Stick to what you’re good at – winning the Big Ten year in, year out…

Slip & Slide

CFB Week 3

Over to Ames, Iowa, where the state’s two premier football programs battled it out for the Cy-Hawk Trophy. This was the 42nd year in a row that Iowa and Iowa State teed off in their rivalry game, but I doubt any other contest took as long to compete as this one. Atrocious weather really put a dampener on this battle – the game being postponed multiple times. Iowa finally took the game in dramatic fashion with a 18-17 victory after six hours. But that’s not the reason why it makes my Monday five. Oh no…

College Gameday was at Jack Trice Stadium, and the Iowa State students may have felt they had to give the watching world some entertainment. In the second interruption, the student section rushed the field as the rain hammered down. The slick field became one big slip and slide for a bunch of drunk, immature young adults:

For the record, I would definitely have been participating.

Rocky Top

CFB Week 3

Bit of a feel good story here to wrap up week three. A school in Florida had a ‘college colours’ day, where the kids got to sport some merch of their favourite college football team. One young man from a family with modest means didn’t have anything official, so instead pinned some self-styled University of Tennessee artwork to an orange t-shirt. Not sure what his parents were up to allowing that – sending their son to school with a piece of paper that essentially says “please pick on me” stuck to his chest – but there you go. Anyway. Surprise surprise, he was mocked relentlessly. Ten year olds can be so cruel…

Obviously they’ve never heard of the old adage “snitches get stitches” in The Sunshine State, because this little lad’s teacher posted a picture of the t-shirt on Facebook, telling the world about the bullying. It went viral, and finally word got round to The University of Tennessee, who promptly sent the boy a boat load of UT gear to thank him for his support. It didn’t stop there. They were so impressed with the design they made official replica t-shirts, with all proceeds going to the “Stomp Out Bullying” charity. So far, more than 50,000 t-shirts have been sold:

CFB Week 3

Phenomenal. But the best was yet to come. Tennessee have offered him a full scholarship to attend their university as part of the class of 2032. That’s a free education for a family that they otherwise may not have been able to afford. An unbelievable gesture. The Volunteers may be a hot mess on the field, but they’re a class act off it.

Mock Draft

Simon Carroll


previously the founder of nfl draft uk, simon has been covering college football and the nfl draft since 2009. based in manchester, simon is also co-creator & weekly guest of the collapsing pocket podcast.