Friday, January 11, 2013


Close Friends will verify that we predicted The Tide would score at least forty points against what had been a lucky as hell Irish Team during the regular season.  Please do remember that Notre Dame limited their mostly mediocre opponents to an average of 10.3 points per game during the regular season – the nation’s best defensive record.  We looked at the strength of their opponents and noted they ranked 31st overall while Alabama was a surprising 34th.  Difference – The Tide competed in the SEC – the most difficult conference in the nation.  What would have happened if Texas A&M or Georgia played Notre Dame?  OK, that was a rhetorical question. We also note that in the Compass Bowl a mediocre Ole Miss Team beat up Pittsburg who had taken the Irish to three overtimes before the Irish prevailed 29-26. 

These post season computer rankings prove to us, once again, that it’s garbage-in and garbage- out.  When it comes down to the sometimes pragmatic nonsense of computer rankings there is no apparent allowance for common sense and the heart & soul and allegiance to alma mater that distinguishes the game from all others.  

Despite the tremendous heart and soul of a very talented Manti Te'o, the Irish were good old Southern roadkill – and almost everybody (excluding Notre Dame), including the pollsters, knew the outcome well in advance of the game which was decided in the first quarter when Alabama scored fourteen unanswered points and manhandled the Irish. There had to be a key play in the game, right?  Paul Myerberg of USA TODAY Sports opined that was every time Alabama ran the ball.  Bottom line: Alabama out-rushed Notre Dame 265-32. It wasn’t nearly that close

At halftime with the score 28-0 Alabama, Notre Dame Coach Brian Kelly was asked by ESPN's sideline reporter, Heather Cox, "Where do the fixes need to come in the second half?" Kelley responded (we paraphrase) that the Irish would have a chance if Alabama doesn't come out of the locker room for the second half.  And so it went…

Now let me surprise you.  I love the tradition of Notre Dame football (Knute Rockne and George "the Gipper" Gipp and Rudy Ruettiger) though I have in the past abhorred the arrogance copped by some of their teams and fans.  I know there is a fine line between sprit, soul and arrogance but somehow – The Irish have seemingly been able to regularly cross that line.  Alabama hasn’t - seemingly content on taking the high road and letting their actions on the field speak for them. Coach Saban wouldn’t have it any other way.

We recently noted the redneck graphic (above) offered via a pre-game tweet by Jimmy Clausen - former Notre Dame quarterback (QB)and current second string QB for the Carolina Panthers.  That’s what we’re talking about.  We guess it could be a dig at his two brothers who both played at Tennessee.  Or perhaps it was meant for current Panther starter quarterback Cam Newton of Auburn or perhaps the 27 players on the current Panthers roster who played for Southern universities.  Perhaps…

Makes us wonder how the then #3 Irish felt coming down to Jackson in 1977 and getting beat by an unranked though motivated Ole Miss team.  We heard how Notre Dame was coming down to kick our butts and show the SEC… To their credit Notre Dame came back and won the national championship that year.  Humbling experiences can be positive

Closer to home Jerry Jones the completely clueless owner and general manager of the Dallas Cowboys is by his estimation, “cleaning house” after another season full of opportunities lost. Since Jones bought the Cowboys almost 24 years ago they are now only a parody of what we used to call “America’s Team.”  So how does he right the ship?  He nonsensically fired his running back coach and then defensive coordinator Rob Ryan who may have a big mouth and blustery, vulgar personality – but he improved the club, the morale and the defense. The Cowboys played most of the year without five starters on defense.  It ended up as a mishmash of players who ultimately gave the offense a chance to win most games. And how did Jones handle that separation?  He had Coach Jason Garrett telephone Ryan while he was on a family vacation – totally classless.   I am over the Dallas Cowboys as long as Jones owns them…

Maybe Jerry should consider leasing - in a Trumpesque move – the entire University of Alabama football squad and Coach Saban and his staff.  They would probably win some games, but even if they could do it, they’d turn him down cold.  All that Tide character and class would just get sideways with JJ Clueless.

Congratulations to the University of Alabama and the Southeastern Conference.


Ned Buxton

PS: Dedicated to the memory and life of Jeanette Swanson, the consummate University of Alabama Fan who took great pride in the recent thrashing of Notre Dame.  Jeanette was born in Jasper, Alabama, “a long, long time ago” and lived most of her life in Birmingham. Parents Ural “Bob” Martin Robinson and Tressie Williams Robinson were also loyal University of Alabama fans with Father Bob supplying The Bear with his homemade jams and jellies for many years prior to Bear’s passing.  Jeanette loved the Southeastern Conference with the exception of Auburn University which always held a special and not so noble place in her heart.  She was a dear Friend who always told it like it was and whose memory will be honored.  Aye, NB  January 19, 2013

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