At UC practice Monday, the team had the Keg O' Nails and the Big East championship trophy out on the sidelines. First off, I'm a little disappointed in the Keg O' Nails because it is the epitome of false advertising in college football. Yes, it's a wooden keg, but there are no nails. A few years back, some unidentified UC players may or may not have cracked it open in search of said nails, only to be disappointed.
I talked about college football trophies here last week and went through some of my favorites. I love the concept. But you know what I don't love?
As fans of UC and U of L, you are being lied to. It's time to change the name of the Keg O' Nails to something else. I petition your help for a new name. Keg O' Air is nowhere near as catchy, but accuracy is more important than flair, right? Or at least, it used to be before the Internet. (Damn you, Al Gore!)
Maybe, the Keg O' Kragethorpe, in honor of one of the great coaches in the rivalry -- at least from a UC perspective.
If you have a free minute today with some suggestions, send them to me (email@example.com) or post in the comments section. This is serious business and we owe it to ourselves to take the trophy to task.
Anyway, let's eat...
--- The new-look Bearcats will take the field on ESPN Friday night against Louisville. No, not new-look because of their recent resurgence. New-look because they will be sporting new TECHFIT adidas uniforms.
They look pretty smooth. The extra stretch and fewer seams allows every player to have a perfect fit. Less hanging uniform means no more of those tackles like the famous Earl Campbell attempt in Houston where his jersey rips off. Nobody's pulling UC down by the jersey with these things.
Michigan, Notre Dame, Louisville, Texas A&M, UCLA and Tennessee will also debut the new uniform technology later this month.
Depending on your nerd level when it comes to uniforms, you may or may not want to watch some of the detailed videos with information about the new threads.
--- Louisville's Charlie Strong sparked the program over the first five games of his tenure and they currently lead the league in total offense. This became a huge game for them, not only because of the Keg O' Lies but because they played themselves into position to be considered a surprise title contender in the wide open conference. C.L. Brown at the Courier-Journal talks about that.
--- Brian Bennett talks about some Big East stats through the first five weeks that could be misleading. Two of those are Louisville's rushing numbers and Cincinnati's defensive rushing numbers.
UC is first in the Big East against the rush (although, rank 8th against the pass and 7th overall) while Louisville is first in rush offense, pass offense and total offense.
B-twice believes both will come back to earth. This game will go a long way to determing which does faster.
The Cards offense hasn't been tested much, except at Oregon State where they responded in a 35-28 loss. Hanging 28 in Corvallis is no small task.
They only scored 16 points against Kentucky, but as folks in Clifton know, judging a team with a new coaching staff by what they did in Week 1 should probably be considered unfair.
--- In case you haven't seen any highlights of Saturday's game yet, they are attached to a notes package from our man Tommy G.
--- There's a long list of players on the Cardinals with local ties, as Scott Springer points out here in his game preview, and Charlie Strong made it a point that he plans on recruiting the heck out of the Cincinnati area.
He proved that my snatching Winton Woods' Dominique Brown this past year. Jones makes a big deal about building a fence around the city and not letting the local talent leave, and rightfully so.
In that same light, he said Monday he doesn't see this as a game that would provide any sustained effect on recruiting. He pointed out that recruiting is about relationships formed with the players, not about one win or even a string of them.
--- Charlie Strong had plenty more to say about his team and this game at his presser on Monday. Card Chronicle, delightfully declaring itself Charlie Strong's 9th favorite blog, has some notes and the video.
--- Bill Koch points out Jones wasn't aware of Isaiah Pead being three yards from 200 on Saturday. Even if he was, I don't think it would have mattered much. Jones shies away from being a numbers guy and runs away from being an individual stat guy. It's all about team.
--- I meant to put this in yesterday's Breakfast and it pretty much cost it being useful information to you in the least, but at 11:30 a.m. today the UC basketball team is holding a pep rally on Fountain Square.
The coaches will address the crowd at noon and it is supposed to go until 1 p.m.
--- Breaking news alert: Stephanie Niemer is still better than everyone in the Big East. For a BE record 5th consecutive week, she was named the Player of the Week in the conference.
--- In some randomness, a man found a 13-foot, 620-pound alligator in his backyard. (I get squirrels and my temperature boils). He shot it six times, one richochet glanced off one of his grandchildren's leg.
He's going to mount the gator, but in the redeeming aspect of the story, he's keeping the head and giving a foot to his each of his four grandchildren.
Where does an 8-year old put a mounted gator foot exactly?
--- For the record, this would not be allowed as my Ink of the Week.