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TCU Is Big on Fireworks and Other Top Stories from Week 9

This weekend didn’t lack for big numbers and big drama in college football. Here are some of the highlights and what we learned.

TCU is for Real

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

I’ve seen stadiums run out of hot dogs. I’ve been to cold-weather games at which they ran out of hot chocolate and coffee. And you can’t imagine the horror the time I went to a minor league baseball game and they ran out of beer. But TCU pulled a new one this weekend, actually running out of fireworks because the offense was too good. The Horned Frogs rolled up 82 points (seven touchdowns and four field goals) against Texas Tech and ran out of pyrotechnics after topping 70.

But it gets better. According to TCU Assistant Athletics Director Drew Martin, the Horned Frogs have already burned through their fireworks budget for the entire season.

With TCU leading the nation in scoring (50.4 ppg), they may need to increase ticket prices just to make more stuff go boom. Imagine where they could be if they hadn’t collapsed against Baylor.

This is Why Michigan Can’t Have Nice Things

I predicted that Michigan State wouldn’t have any mercy on its in-state rivals. However, I never dreamed the Wolverines would be dumb enough to provoke such a reaction. But that’s just what happened when some idiotic Michigan players thought it would be a good idea to symbolically plant a stake in the Spartans’ home field.


Michigan State’s players and coaches not only saw the intentional slight, but took it personally and proceeded to lay the biggest beatdown on Michigan in East Lansing since 1967. Spartans coach Mark Dantonio even admitted he ran up the score with a touchdown with just 28 seconds in response to Michigan’s dumb move.

Note to future Wolverines: when you’ve lost five out of your last six (now six of seven) to the Spartans, you don’t have a lot of room to showboat and talk smack. And if you do, you get exactly what you deserve when even your school paper gives up on you.


I Don’t Envy The Playoff Selection Committee

With LSU holding off No. 3 Ole Miss, 10-7, on Saturday night, the number of one-loss teams continues to grow. By my count, among the Power 5 conferences, there are just two undefeated teams and 15 more with one loss. To be sure, many of these have to play each other and will be knocked out of contention. But with the season coming down the homestretch, it’s looking increasingly likely the Committee will have plenty of controversy as they choose from several unbeaten or one-loss teams vying for those coveted four spots.

How they resolve that, I have no idea.

Any Publicity is Good Publicity

In a related note, Conference USA this week hired a public relations firm to help boost undefeated Marshall’s changes of cracking into that Final Four. The Thundering Herd have been impressive this year, winning by an average of more than 30 points per game. But there’s only so much spin you can put on a schedule that ranks dead last nationally.

A Big Ten Running Back is Going to New York

I’m not sure who, but I can guarantee you that someone will be at the Heisman ceremony to represent the smashmouth Big Ten. Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah leads the nation in rushing (1,249 yards) and Indiana’s Tevin Coleman and Melvin Gordon of Wisconsin rank third and fourth, respectively. With Todd Gurley still suspended, most would argue that these are the best running backs in the country (although you might get a few votes for Marshall’s Devon Johnson). Abdullah set a school record this week with 341 all-purpose yards, the best in the nation this year while Gordon has scored 15 touchdowns in his last five games. The fact that Coleman plays for a woeful Hoosiers squad could unfairly keep him out of the mix, so look for the running back that comes out on top November 15th when Nebraska takes on the Badgers to keep running all the way to New York.

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