Never Underestimate a Leprechaun Scorned

I’ve been looking forward to this week for a whole year. I know, opening weekend was three weeks ago already (I was excited for that too!), but this week holds a whole different level of intensity for me. Why, you ask? In one word: Michigan. Two more words, Denard Robinson. ONE more word, and the most important, I might add… REVENGE!!!

Now before I go all William Wallace on here, let me explain what fellow Notre Dame fans already know: we owe them a loss. Or better yet, they owe us a win, as we’ve coughed up the W to them in the final seconds our last three meetings.

2009: ND leads 34-31 with 2:19 left on the game clock. Tate Forcier goes 5 for 6 in a drive downfield that results in a 5-yard touchdown pass to Greg Mathews with 11 seconds remaining. Kick is good, blah, blah, blah, Notre Dame loses.

*Side note for this game: Head coaches were Charlie Weis and Rich Rodriguez for this one. Cringe.

2010: The Irish overcome a 21-7 halftime deficit, while holding the Wolverines scoreless in the second half… until Denard Robinson scores from 2 yards out with 27 seconds left to play. Michigan wins 28-24.

*Note: Robinson accounts for 502 total yards and three touchdowns in this, just his second-career start. My I-respect-you-but-loathe-you relationship with him begins.

2011: Notre Dame enters the 4th quarter leading 24-7. I had already sent out some taunting text messages to a few Michigan fans at this point. Of course, Michigan comes roaring back, eventually leading 28-24. That score rings a bell, right? Well, the Irish have time to answer back this time, scoring a go-ahead TD with 1:22 remaining. What do I do? I go crazy. I pick up my daughter, swing her around, scream, cheer, and pose for the following picture (which I have never shared until this day, due to shame).

I thought we finally had this one in the bag. But no. Robinson drives 80 yards to score with TWO seconds remaining. I am stunned. I am angry. My husband is scared.

*Note: Two things in reference to the picture. 1) My daughter, Ava, was clearly not as excited as I was, and 2) I am guilty of one of my own pet peeves… holding up the #1 sign when we obviously weren’t #1. We were 0-2 entering the game. Geesh, Alexis. Alas, I digress.

Now, I’ve never been a math whiz, but let me see….

948 (Denard’s total yards vs. ND) × 7 (touchdowns he’s scored vs. ND) – 4 (the number of points ND has lost by each of the past three match-ups) × 42 (the combined number of seconds it’s taken for Michigan to score THREE game-winning touchdowns in the past three years) = ONE incredibly fired up and vengeful Irish squad this Saturday.

Mark my words. Led by Manti Te-o, an inspired Irish defense is going to do something no group has ever done to Denard Robinson: tie his shoe laces so tight he loses feeling in his feet and can’t run at all.

Just kidding, but they are going to get some stops. Robinson doesn’t have the protection up front he’s had in recent years. Plus, the Irish frontmen appear to be the best they’ve been in a while. I believe that this go-round is going to be very different.

The old saying goes, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” Well, I am a woman scorned by Robinson & the Wolverines. I hope the Fighting Irish have the same mentality come 7:30pm this Saturday. Better yet, I hope Brian Kelly is drilling it into their brains all week long!

In closing, I want to know who YOU are rooting for in this matchup. This question applies to EVERYONE. I’m always curious about which team outsiders (especially fans of Big Ten teams) tend to root for in this long-standing rivalry. Or in other words, which team you hate less. 😉

Tim vs. Tom: A Mile-High Holiday Treat

Somewhere in the North Pole, there is a bum with a white beard and a dirty red suit that is out of a job. The Claus-man has lost his sweet gig to a large man wearing blue and orange. The eight tiny reindeer have been replaced as well, by ten big dudes wearing tight pants and helmets.

Sorry, Santa. Tim Tebow has stolen your thunder this holiday season and he’s spreading football cheer to just about everyone these days. Even some of us ill-fated Browns fans have (hopefully) found an underdog to latch onto this-coming postseason in Tebow and the Broncos. Whether you’re tired of hearing the Tebow-hoopla or not, I just can’t get enough of a good thing. Of course I wrote that story a month ago, so I’ll cool my Tebow jets for a few minutes.

Besides, before Tim can hit the lucky number seven (straight victories) and bring his Broncos one step closer to a playoff berth, he must slap a big “L” in the New England Patriots’ column; or rather, the loss column of proven-veteran Tom Brady.

Now let me just get this out there. Brady’s hair is a huge distraction for me. Even his sparkling blue eyes and stellar bone structure are rendered powerless to this female due to his terrible tresses. Let alone the words that come out of his mouth during a press conference. It’s like he’s on mute while I watch him speak because all I can think is, “Wow, that’s some bad hair.” (View evidence below)

Okay, I know the last couple aren’t him, but one has to wonder who his style icons have been over the years. Moving on…

Bad mop or not, Brady is a pretty sick quarterback, and he’s still not as big of a tool as the yeti in Pittsburgh. With the heated exchange between himself and his offensive coordinator last week aside, news of Tom and the Patriots has been fairly skim this season, despite their solid 10-3 record (hard to believe now that one of those losses was to Buffalo!). Brady is second in the league in passing yards and New England is third in the NFL in points scored per game with 30.5.

No wonder nearly everyone besides Patriots fans dislike the guy. Some even use the word hate. See the video below.

When you have haters under the age of 10, you know you’ve made it. 🙂

Well, Tom Brady and the Pats are hoping to make some grown men cry in Denver this weekend, just like they did to the scorned little fella above.

However, it won’t be easy. Denver is 7-1 with #15 at the reigns, and although Tebow’s game is sometimes hard to watch for the first three and a half quarters, I’d argue that there is not a better final-drive player in the league currently.

But will the Bronco’s mid-level defense keep it close enough for Tebow to take over in the fourth? Denver has not faced an offense like New England’s yet. Brady and the Patriots have been posting and average of 424 total yards per game, with 75% of those yards coming compliments of the six-time Pro-Bowler’s arm.

Of course the Patriots’ D is nothing more than average either, and they face a unique (to the NFL) Broncos’ offense which leads the league in rushing. Tebow makes the option work, and more importantly, Tebow makes his teammates believe they can win.

Yes, the New England name may be intimidating, and that reputation is deserved in my opinion. But one’s got to wonder… who should be more afraid heading into Sunday’s game? If I’m a Patriot… I’m a bit concerned about this Tebow character. Not to mention the rest of the Broncos, who have won five of the last seven meetings with NE, and the city of Denver that will no-doubt be going CRAZY for this game. There is something scary about a team that believes in itself as much as the Tebow-led Broncos do. You never know what they’re capable of.

There is also something refreshing about a football player who is clearly not out to make any fashion statements with his hairstyles. 

In closing, I’d like to leave you with a little jingle compliments of the man who was formally one of the Tebow’s biggest critics. Yes, Merril Hoge has been reformed. This is the same guy who called Tebow starting for Denver this season “absurd,” while stating, “It’s embarrassing to think the Broncos could win with Tebow!”

Open mouth, insert foot, Hoge!

If this can happen, just about anything is possible come Sunday!

***Play Video Below***

Tebow: The Newest Hunk/Hero (and those that came before him)!

Last week, I ended my post with a series of questions concerning Joe Paterno, including whether the Penn State staple would be absent from the sidelines this past Saturday. The answer? Yes. And believe it or not, the sun rose again on Sunday. I admit, I was as intrigued as the next person by the scandal (obviously). However, I must be honest when I say I would rather discuss a possible collaboration of Justin Bieber and the Jonas Brothers before having one more conversation that includes “Paterno”, “Penn State”, or “Jerry Sandusky”. Thank you, ESPN, and every other news outlet (including myself) for covering this earth-shattering story around the clock. Curtains on this subject.

Moving on… I would like to steer away from the hard news and seriousness of last week’s post and focus on something a little more intriguing. This week’s story will be what the folks in the news industry refer to as fluff. In other words, we’re going to talk about the hunks of football because it makes us feel good. 🙂

(Men who follow this blog, I will not be offended if you veer away now.)

Today’s entry will not only be about the hotties, per se, but also the other just-plain-nice-guys that we find ourselves rooting for simply because they’re so darn sweet.

Let’s start with the most-talked about quarterback in the league, Mr. Tim Tebow. Tonight, Tebow had the perfect stage to continue his turn-around of the Bronco’s season, and another opportunity to shake his critics. Denver had posted a 1-4 record when Tebow was finally given the reigns against Miami in week 7. Now? They are 5-5, only a half-game back in their division, and basically they’re the hottest thing since leg warmers and knee-high boots. Didn’t know that was hot? Well, it is. Anyway, Tebow has continued to make things happen HIS way. Although, I will concede that his throwing motion doesn’t look half as good as his physical appearance. He entered this game with a 44.8 completion percentage while averaging 86.4 passing yards per game. That’s awful. However, if a quarterback can rush for the amount of yards that he’s able to each game, while winning four out of five outings, I don’t care if he passes the football underhand… I’d take it!

Next we’ll move on to the Tebow critics. Merril Hoge, aka Scrooge, and a number of other ESPN and NFL analysts can BACK OFF! Whether they like it or not, this not-so-tiny Tim is writing his own holiday story. Tebow is finding a way to win, albeit ugly at times. But that’s better than losing ugly. Ahem… BROWNS! And I bet you Colts fans would prefer ten ugly wins to the even uglier goose egg you have in your win column at the moment. Am I right?

Tebow

Bottom line is this: I’ve never cared about Tim Tebow’s career any more than I cared about the calorie content in the peanut butter pie I ate last night (which is not at all if you were wondering – it was worth it!). Now that his college-stud days are over, I find myself rooting for the guy just because I feel like people want to see him fail. Even when he wins he gets criticized more than most losing quarterbacks of the week! He’s a good guy. He stands up for what he believes in. Shouldn’t we want and will a guy like him to succeed? Well, thanks to all of his nay-sayers, Tebow has a new fan in me. The phrase, “keep hating, you’re making me famous” isn’t reserved just for teenage girls on Facebook anymore, right Tim?

Next hottie? Kurt Warner. THIS one goes out to my mother :). Of course she would say she likes him because he’s such a nice guy, but let’s be honest, Mom, he’s not too hard on the eyes either. My mom watched a special on Warner a couple of years ago and heard his story. Let me just say, she was pretty taken by the guy! Click here to hear his story for yourself. There have been SEVERAL different occasions since then in which she has referenced her “favorite” quarterback. Each of those times (at least the discussions she has had around me), she’s asked,

Warner

“What’s his name again? You know, the quarterback that Annette (her friend) and I like?”

“Kurt Warner?” I offer.

“Yeah, that’s it! Kurt Warner! ”

So, she may not know his name, but he IS her favorite! I can already tell you that if he were still playing, she would be rooting for him, no questions asked…. as soon as she’d realize he’s the one on the field.

Quinn

The next stud on the list just can’t go without mentioning. Yes, I have already discussed him on here, and yes, I already receive crap about this guy too: Brady Quinn. You may have gathered from previous posts that I’m a Notre Dame fan. During my college days Quinn led the Irish to some of the best seasons I can remember. He holds 36 records at Notre Dame and won the Maxwell Award his senior year. The Maxwell Trophy, though not as prestigious as the Heisman Trophy, is given to the best player in the country according to a panel of NCAA head coaches and members of the sports media. In other words, he is not terrible, and no, I do not like him just because of his looks… although they surely don’t hurt. 🙂

Notice how I’m already defending my bias for this quarterback. Let me tell you exactly why, and exactly why I will admit, yes, the guy also wins points with me because he’s incredibly good-looking. It’s because with most of the men out there, he LOSES points because he’s incredibly good-looking! In other words, they’re jealous. The same goes for Tim Tebow. He’s an attractive, positive, and faith-driven man yet sadly enough, a lot of negative people out there don’t like that. You know what they say… misery loves company!

Ultimately ladies, in your own football world you can like (or dislike) anyone for whatever reason you choose. If you don’t have one already, your assignment is to select your favorite player. Have no shame. Think he looks good in his tight pants? Perfect! Think he’s a nice guy and deserves some support? That works too! Try to make it a point to either watch him play this weekend, or at least see how he did afterwards.

In closing, we’re going to take a poll. Who’s the most attractive guy in the football? If your favorite is not listed, add him in the “other” line. Yes, coaches are allowed too. However, as mentioned before, I’d appreciate it if you could all show some restraint and leave Joe Paterno out of this.

😉