Texas 51, Rice 10

After all the pomp and circumstance surrounding the Ohio State game, watching Texas trounce Rice 51-10 was about as thrilling as finding out the allegedly voluptuous vixen you've been chatting with online all summer is none other than your 13-year old sister. And given the fact that tickets were $55 each, the feeling of frustration due to aggregate loss of time and money was probably comparable.

Needless to say, many Longhorn fans left the "Royal Palace" before the game ended Saturday night and most spent the long walk back to their cars wondering why UT's athletic department ever scheduled such a mis-matchup in the first place.

Certainly one can make the argument that the one-sided affair was due to a combination of the Horns' athletic prowess and the Owls' inexperience. Moreover, it's also plausible that the outcome may not always be quite this lopsided if the two teams played every year. But you can't deny the latest trend in wimpy, non-conference scheduling on the part of the schools in the power conferences. (Rumor has it Texas Tech is in a race with K-State to schedule a home-and-home series with The School for The Blind.) And with so many teams moving up and down the rankings from year to year, how do you know if your school's athletic director has put the fix in and scheduled a made-to-order win?

I'm glad you ask, below is a little segment I like to call...


10) Directional terms, geographic landmarks, and nouveau-religious icons make up the majority of the school's name (i.e., Middle-Eastern State, Slippery Rock U., Mt. Carmel Tech, etc.)
9) Their fans recently tore a goalpost down and dragged it to the local Diary Queen to celebrate the end of a 37-game losing streak.
8) The athletic director refers to their AP ranking as a significant step towards winning a Division II Championship.
7) The starting quarterback is a JUCO transfer from a truck driving school where his handle was "Uncle Rico."
6) The conference the school belongs to is affiliated with the "Chico's Bail Bonds" Bowl.
5) The school's mascot smells like French fries and looks suspiciously like the "Hamburgler."
4) When asked by reporters about the team's chances, the coach usually frowns and says, "we're small, but we're slow."
3) The marching band features an electronic keyboard player and covers Duran-Duran's "Hungry Like the Wolf" at halftime.
2) The school's most famous alumni is "that guy" in the commercial encouraging others to join "the fast-pace world of court reporting."

And the #1 sign your team might be playing a creampuff is...

1) The only reason their fans drove all that way to watch the game is because it beats trying to ride out a hurricane.

On to...

Leading up to the season, I had the Mizzou game circled as a potential pitfall game for a number of reasons: The Tigers feature an elusive quarterback and potential Heisman candidate in Brad Smith; they'd come into the Texas game ranked and on a roll because their non-conference schedule was looking only slightly tougher than Texas Tech's; revenge was a factor, they should have beaten UT last year after knocking Vince Young out of the game; and most significantly, they hook up with the Horns the weekend before the Red River Shootout.

Obviously, over the first month of the season a lot of things transpired to alter my cautious state: Mizzou's defense has been exposed, the Tigers suffered another debilitating non-conference loss, and the chances of Texas getting caught looking ahead to the TX/OU game have been diminished with the Sooners 1-2 start.

However, despite the fact that most pundits have written this game off as another easy win for the Horns, to quote Lee Corso, I say, "not so fast, my friends." True, Texas has two weeks to prepare for this game and has proven that playing on the road is not a problem for them. But, the kick-off is set for 11 a.m., Texas just got done with 3 night games, the opponent is considered to be weak because of a previous loss, the venue is not known for being a particularly tough place to play, and Brad Smith is still lurking just waiting for a chance to go off and show a national audience and NFL scouts just what he's got. If he can get hot and the Mizzou crowd can get the Tiger defense to play out of their minds, they could make things difficult for Texas if the Horns come into the game expecting to win easily.

That being said, I still think the Longhorns have too much talent and depth to let the Tigers keep the issue in doubt, and I expect Vince and the boys to take control early in the 3rd quarter. As for the score, don't look now, but here comes the...

Texas 38
Siegfried and Roy's Boys 21

We had so much fun (good times) during our last visit to Columbia (Juan Valdez grabs life by the beans) for the Mizzou game (oh, THAT Columbia), we had to go back. Once again (twice is nice) we'll be hanging with the Tiger (He's Grrrrreat!), a huge Missouri fan and a good friend of my father-in-law ("I'm in the circle of trust"). If memory serves (got Ginco), there is an RV parking area ("shitter's full!") between the east side of Faurot Field ("the petting Zou") and the Hearnes Basketball Center (he must be tall). Kick-off has been set for 11 a.m. (kegs and eggs) and we'll most likely be at the tailgate (stop, drop and drink) shortly before and after the game (Tiger Tussle). Gotta love road trips (they're road-rageous).

"Who does Texas A&M play this week?"
"Texas State, I think."
"Wasn't that the team in 'Necessary Roughness?'"



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