Monday, August 31, 2009

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Thirteen
  • Pitt v. West Virginia
  • Southern Miss a. East Carolina
  • Auburn v. Alabama
  • Mississippi State v. Ole Miss
  • Ball State a. Western Michigan
  • Louisiana-Monroe v. Middle Tennessee State
Kansas v. Missouri (AF!) - A possible match-up for the Big 12 North championship (also known as the team that has the honor of getting beaten by whichever team wins the Big 12 South). There's a big "if" here since Mizzou is replacing Chase Daniel, Jeremy Maclin, and Chase Coffman. Well, at least the Tigers keep their "popped collar" name quotient up by replacing two guys named Chase with a guy named Blaine - new quarterback Blaine Gabbert. While he doesn't fit the mold of the Missouri quarterback we've come to know and hate - 6'4" 226? No thanks; how about 5'10" 265! - by many accounts, Gabbert could be, at least, a competent successor.

How many Chases and Blaines amongst these dudes facebook friends?

Friday, August 28, 2009

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Twelve
  • Michigan State v. Penn State
  • Ole Miss v. LSU
Louisiana-Lafayette v. Louisiana-Monroe
Middle Tennessee v. Arkansas State (AF!) - A Sun Belt Conference bonanza! Because, you know, why the hell not?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Football Season: It's the Final Countdown!

Most people will tell you that we're a mere week from the return of football. But did you know that the number of days left to college football season is really...ZERO?!? That's right, tonight at 6:05 ET you can tune in* to see the Quincy Hawks battle the Indiana State Sycamores in the unfriendly confines of ISU Memorial Stadium.

* Actually, no you can't.

Europe are huge Indiana State fans.

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Eleven
  • Wake Forest v. Florida State
  • Cincinnati v. West Virginia
  • Iowa a. Ohio State
  • Vanderbilt v. Kentucky
  • Florida Atlantic v. Arkansas State
Baylor v. Texas (AF!) - Baylor's picked to finish near the bottom of the loaded Big 12 South, but they should be a lot of fun to watch with dynamo quarterback Robert Griffin. Not only should it be interesting to see how he fares against the Longhorns' defense, let's face it, this will likely be one of the only Baylor games that you might be able to see without considerable effort.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Action Football! Season 2 Episode 1

Reunited and it feels so good! The first episode of this new football season is up and at 'em. Listen, won't you, to our second annual NCAA football preview (much shorter than last year's, we assure you).

(For any of you new listeners, feel free to subscribe via iTunes.)

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Ten
  • Duke a. UNC
  • Penn State v. Ohio State
  • LSU a. Alabama
  • Louisiana Tech v. Boise State
Connecticut a. Cincinnati (AF!) - With Penn State/Ohio State likely to be the Big Ten Championship Game and LSU/Alabama likely to have huge SEC West consequences a Big East match up isn't likely to get much press. The chances of Gameday in Cincinnati are about a zillion to one. Still, Connecticut is hoping to build on last season's surprise success and, after signing a contract extension, Cincinnati coach Brian Kelly is hoping to restore the Bearcats to perennial Big East contention. Who knows, with no clear cut favorite in the league (West Virginia? Rutgers? South Florida?) this game may have championship consequences, too.

Monday, August 24, 2009

How I loathe you with all my hate, Notre Dame.

I was doing some research for a quick post on the disaster in Dallas and wound up at the Alamodome website (Ed. Note: Check out "Fact No. 4". Oh, the end zones. That makes more sense then in the middle of the field.) I remember visiting San Antonio right after the Alamodome was built and remember the tour guide (Yes! I took a guided tour of a stadium! What the fuck of it? I was 12, ya judgmental clown shoes!) talking about how they did extentive testing to make sure that it could house a football team. At the time, the NFL was looking to expand. It is amazing to me how little thought is going into these new billion dollar stadiums. New Yankee Stadium has freak jet stream that lift balls out. Citi Field has obstructed views. Owners, please stop worrying about how many skyboxes you can put in and borrow an engineers, preferably an Asian one, to do a little number crunching.

The other random fact is the October 31st game between Notre Dame and Washington San Antonio...TEXAS! Who are the ad wizards who came up with this one?

Friday, August 21, 2009

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Nine
  • Arizona State v. Cal
  • Georgia a. Florida
  • UNLV v. San Diego State
  • FIU v. Louisiana-Lafayette
Western Kentucky v. North Texas (AF!) - With Georgia/Florida this week, any other game will be lucky to get any mention whatsoever, especially one like WKU/UNT. This is our pick because, let's face it, there probably isn't going to be cause to watch either of these teams the rest of the season. Might as well give them there moment in the sun.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Eight

None (AF!) - Well...that was unexpected. It's not to say that there aren't any good games this weekend - there certainly will be, and we'll make our picks during week eight on the podcast and blog - just that none of the hundred and what have you FBS teams are having there SportingNews-determined "Game to Watch" that week. So, this post was a gimme, I guess.

WednesDay in Football: Brett Favre Edition (Of Course)

There's little I can say that hasn't been said already. Is it a surprise that his "done for good" statement didn't stick? No. Will his addition make the Vikings a better team? Probably. At the end of the day, regardless of his shortcomings, you'd expect Brett Favre to be an upgrade over Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels, especially if (an admittedly big if) B-Favre's able to accept his role as a *gasp* game manager and part-time gunslinger. Comparison's to Elway's late career Super Bowl years (as a decision maker in service of the running game) are appropriate.

After the late season fades he's had the past two seasons (his last with the Packers and only with the Jets), there's every reason to expect one this season. Not for nothing, I'm pretty pissed the both the Packers/Vikings games pop up in the first half of the schedule....

While I'm definitely excited by the prospect of being on the other end of a patented late game, back breaking Brett Favre interception, I'm equally dreading the prospect of watching Favre, aided by Adrian Purple Jesus Peterson picking apart the Packers' defense, a distinct possibility with a new defense being broken in this year.

While I think that all the "are the Vikings the team to beat?" talk is laughably premature, I will say that, between an imposing Minnesota team, Atlanta, Philadelphia, the Giants, Arizona, New Orleans, and an improved Green Bay team, the NFC picture is about as interesting as it's ever been.

Friday, August 14, 2009

FriDay in Football: 20 Days and Counting

More like "Flu Devils" amiright? So 15 Duke football players are exhibiting symptoms of the H1N1 virus. [Insert joke about Duke coeds.] Heyooooh!

While I should have posted it yesterday, Goody Goodell made like Jack Dongaghy and told Donte Stallworth to shut it down.

If only there was something else newsworthy in the NFL today. Oh well.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

WednesDay in Football: 22 Days

Everyday he's hustlin': Michigan Coach Rich "Dick Rod" Rodriguez spoke a bit about Justin Feagin's dismissal from the Wolverines. In a nutshell, Feagin was apparently a known campus weed dealer, who claims to have been open to coaches about his past dealing drugs in Florida, who had a bottle of gasoline lit on fire in front of his door after taking $600 from a student in order to secure some cocaine from his connections in Florida and not delivering. Questions, of course, arose concerning Dick Rod's investigatory practice in recruiting. Right after his dismissal, Feagin hoped to transfer to Appalachian State but they were all, "Thanks, but no thanks," which is too bad because a few years in western North Carolina would have been a great opportunity to branch out into dealing crystal meth.

Hands down the biggest story in college football, no all football, no America! is that Virginia Tech running back Darren Evans will miss the season with an ACL injury. VT was a sexy dark horse National Champion pick, and Evans was prominently featured in all the Hokies previews. At least we won't have to wait long to see how his back ups will fare. Remember, VT/Alabama is Action Football!'s week one Game to Watch pick. Boom!

Lawrence Phillips was convicted of assault and other felony charges (six more makes seven, seven felony counts, ah-ah-ah-ah). Although really this story should be under NCAA because face it, while he technically played in the NFL it's his college career that everybody remembers. Oh, and the crime.

T.O.'s t-oe (ZING!) kept him out of practice and will keep him day to day.

And speaking of the Bills, in an attempt to recapture some early '90s magic, Buffalo's going no huddle. Furthermore, Nutmeg Mills and Starter are in a bidding war to handle Buffalo's merchandising and Ugly Kid Joe's been hired to write a themesong for the team.


Monday, August 10, 2009

If Ever a Story Fit Our Mission....

Readers of the blog and listeners of the podcast will know that at Action Football!, football and beer go together like peanut butter and beer. So it was with great interest that I read this (old ass) article ranking the 10 best beer towns in college football.

The only towns/beers listed I'm familiar with are Winston-Salem, NC (Foothills; excellent) and Madison (Great Dane; also great). I suspect that Madison would have bumped a few spots if breweries outside of Madison proper (like New Glarus or Capital - although I just saw that Capital's old summer seasonal, Fest, is in hibernation, which breaks my heart) were included.

Still, I can't quibble much with the rest of the list given my unfamiliarity and it's certainly a resource I'll consult if I ever happen to find myself in any of them. (Oh, except that Boulder's Avery Brewing Co. is totally overrated.)

NCAA Football Week By Week

Week Seven
  • Clemson v. Wake Forest
  • Virginia a. Maryland
  • Northwestern a. Michigan State
  • Colorado v. Kansas
  • Texas v. Oklahoma
  • UCF v. Miami
  • Tulsa v. Boise State
  • SMU v. Navy
  • San Jose State a. Fresno
  • Notre Dame v. USC
Georgia Tech v. Virginia Tech (AF!) - Whoa! Stop the presses! Action Football! has blown the internet apart. The entire college football world will be abuzz with two games: Texas/Oklahoma's Red River Shootout and Notre Dame/USC's Does This Rivalry Have a Name? Game. Both of those games could have big National Championship consequences for three of the four teams (you know the ones I'm talking about...), but we're looking at GTVT, son. This game will, at the least, have a big influence on the ACC Coastal division (and thereby the ACC overall), but may have NC consequences, too, with both teams semi-legit darkhorse candidates. This game could have it all: Georgia Tech's weirdo triple option offense, and, if a player gets fired up enough, Beamer takin' one to the melon!

Image SBB

Football's Kinda Back

So the Hall of Fame Game happened last night. I watched it from beginning to end which is definitely the result of it being actual live football on television and also unlikely to happen again this preseason.

A few things I took away from the Titans' 21-18 win over the Bills: if first team v. first team this far before the start of the real season means anything, the Bills are in for a long season and Tennessee looks pretty tight; the first quarter fake punt was ridiculously awesome; things don't look good for Vince Young's make it or break it season; in fact, make that bad; no, really bad; Chris Mortenson's kid looks dopey.

So, yeah, there you go.

Since the advent of the floating score box overlay over a decade ago, to the first down line, to the on field down and distance graphic, each year seems to bring some sort of presentation tweaks. This season, I'll sometimes talk about them because, let's face it, we can use any bullshitty content we can come up with around here.

The first thing that struck me was that NBC hasn't changed the color of the peacock wipe (Ed: Ewwwww) they use when cutting between live action and replay. It's still the same weird peach color (the color that Crayola used to call flesh tone before they got all inclusive and whatnot) which has always struck me as a weird choice. It looks like a color the designer arbitrarily chose as a filler while they were testing the graphics and then forgot to change before the version was finalized.

While that's merely cosmetic, another choice they've made could feasibly give a viewer a heart attack. Between downs, there's a small graphic that rotates (possibly the down and distance: 2nd and 8 to 3rd and 4, for instance). Problem is, while it's rotating, it goes from black to yellow to black. That flash of yellow in your peripheral vision, I guarantee, is at least subconsciously interpreted as a flag notice. I think a few years ago CBS had something similar, and when I was watching a Packers game, everydamntime Green Bay's defense had a third down stop and I caught that flash my blood pressure rose a little.

And speaking of CBS, for at least the last few years, their down and distance change has been accompanied by a barely audible peepy sound that has always sounded like a whistle. Also a bad idea.

Finally, NBC is really miking the hell out of the quarterback. Sunday night isn't just Football Night, it's now Listen For Swears Night.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Now, I am pissed.

Just in case you missed it, Eli Manning became the highest paid player in football yesterday. He'll be getting, $97 million over 6 years. Or if you want me to break it down more and show off my kick ass skills on my cell phone calculator, that's $16.16667 million per season, and $1.0104167 million per game. My cell phone rocks the bells. It also has a camera, which can take blury pictures of chicks' butts at the mall. If you are still not mad over how much money Eli Manning is getting this year, then do this:
  1. Take a dollar out of you wallet or purse (Ed. note: Hi, Mom)
  2. Multiply that dollar 97,000,000 times.
Please get mad.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

TuesDay in Football: T-Minus 30 Days

Urban Meyer got paid, son. Six year contract, $24 mil equals a lot of...well, whatever that guy likes. I like to believe he's in to tricking out bicycles. Also, did you know there were eight popes named Urban? Including Blessed Urban V. Now, I'm no papal historian, so I don't know what makes some popes "blessed," but I'm positive Blessed Eugene was a dweeb. And Blessed Innocent (V and XI) sounds like a Christian rapper name. And a good snap for a pope named Boniface would be "Pope Boner-face."

College Football Resource has a recap of some recent coach tweets. Steve "The Shark" Sarkisian should be told that while there is a 140 character limit, there's no pressure to try to use them up.... Three question marks and six exclamation points? Cool it with the punctuation marks, guy.

Clay Travis has a great post about the awful feeling of high expectations. It's been said before, and it'll be said again, but we think Ole Miss is being gassed unreasonably. By the end of November, the only thing that will have separated this year's preseason top 10 Ole Miss team and last year's preseason #1 Georgia team will be that by most accounts, Georgia actually deserved their hype.

Plaxico Burress was indicted for his "shot myself in the leg in the club" incident. They say three and a half to fifteen if indicted, but why do I keep seeing "thirty days and three years of probation" in my crystal ball?

The Eagles signed Jeremy Maclin to a five year deal. Over the last few years, Tony Kornheiser has loved saying that McNabb hasn't had a receiver since Terrell Owens, but man, DeSean Jackson, Kevin Curtis, Jason Avant, Reggie Brown, Hank Baskett, and Maclin (not to mention Brian Westbrook).... That's starting to look like a pretty fun team to watch.

Bengals tight end Reggie Kelly ruptured his Achilles' tendon. Ever since that part in Pet Sematary when that little zombie kid was hiding under the bed and cut Fred Gwynne's Achilles' with a scalpel, Achilles' injuries have bugged me out big time.

Plaxico, any chance of seeing that old ring again? Hmm? The one I gave you? - Bilbo Baggins, Plaxico Burress's attorney