The Bearcats took the title of big winners of Cincinnati's big weekend. Well, I shouldn't say that. I heard Tinkerbell put on quite a show during the second performance of Disney on Ice.
But, it would have taken a lot of Triple Salchows to top what UC accomplished Saturday night.
The first half was one of the most impressive showings this football team has had, not just since Butch Jones took over -- that is obvious -- but probably since joining the Big East. Nobody is handing UC any awards for winning a fifth consecutive Battle for the Victory Bell for the first time since 1900, but they now starting to believe this team can be as good as was projected before the season began.
The real tests begin Friday down in Louisville. So, with that, we move from the Bell to the Keg of Nails and another team rolling with some confidence after a 56-0 victory against Memphis.
--- Hopefully you all read my column following the game Saturday. If not, I won't hold it against you if you go read it now.
Heading to postgame with the players, I wanted to take an interesting angle and, considering the long, wild road that dropped UC off at the beginning of Big East play feeling as good as they have all year, I was curious if they viewed themselves as the favorites to win the Big East. The league hasn't exactly been a Battle of the Titans to this point.
I half expected a player to say they did believe they were the favorite. College players, particularly riding the momentum after a big win, tend to be pretty high on themselves. Those with two consecutive Big East titles own reason to.
However, Isaiah Pead said this team still feels disrespected. He also said he feels they deserve that disrespect.
For a team facing the lighter end of the Big East schedule with Louisville, Syracuse and USF coming up, playing with a chip on their shoulder and fighting for respect is one of the best mantras you can hear.
It's very easy to say this after a game like Saturday, but I feel good about the direction and potential of this team
--- Dan Hoard wrote this piece and said he wouldn't trade Pead for any back in the BIg East. I tend to agree. I am still amazed by the complete 180 degree flip his presence in the backfield makes for this offense. Having the explosive threat in the running game opens up all the passing lanes on the edges.
The man averaged almost 20 yards a rush. Think about that.
That's how Jones racked up so many yards at Central, was by the run setting up the pass, and we are starting to see that work here. Although, he never had a back with the home run capability like pead with the Chippewas.
--- Tim Adams at Bearcat Lair says what many people have been thinking since the Big East resurgence of UC football --- it's time to drop the Miami game.
I would say, yes. I would say that the numbers are getting lopsided and the two teams, their two conferences, have so clearly taken on alternate levels of talent and execution that the move would make sense. I would say the series is taking up one of the precious non-conference spots so critical to success in the Big East, where your schedule will constantly be challenged on a national level.
I would say that, but I would be forgetting that this series has been going on for 115 years. You don't mess with tradition. Not like this. Since there has been football, these two teams have played. As long as there will be football, that shouldn't change.
--- Bill Koch, who really showed off his giving side by bringing two boxes of cookies to the press box for the game Saturday, showed off some writing at well, talking about UC's approach moving to Louisville.
--- Want a comparison of the UC-UL rivalry? I thought so.
--- Here's all the videos from players and coach Jones from after the Miami game.
--- Brian Bennett turned his Big East power rankings upside down. Now, if they were ranking teams by coaching ability, yes, Pittsburgh would belong at 8th. But, I have a feeling the Panthers will find a way to climb their way back up.
Though, they did look awful against Notre Dame. And Wannstedt continued to be far less impressive than his formidable mustache.
--- Louisville is tops in the league in yards per game and tied for first in sacks.
--- OK, how about some randomness
Cigar Guy: Beyond the Glory.
Alphonoso Smith becomes one of my favorite players.