Week One: Wednesday
Marcus Vick, Virginia Tech
The kid has never started a game, but he already has the weight of the world on his shoulders. Vick is expected to lead Virginia Tech to at least an ACC title this year. Marcus also has to deal with the expectations that Michael (his brother) set. They both play quarterback...at Virginia Tech...during great stretches of Hokie football. It will not be easy. Vick the Younger opens against North Carolina State, the nation's #1 defense from a year ago. How will Vick deal with this? After all, he is just a year removed from dealing with all sorts of issues off the field. He appears to be more mentally prepared for the challenges that this year presents. He is already being touted as a Heisman darkhorse by all sorts of analysts (including this one). How he deals with it will be the key to the Hokies season.
NEWS & NOTES
LSU's game against North Texas has been postponed. It will not be played on Saturday night due to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. It will be rescheduled for a later date sometime today, more than likely. Let's hope that the LSU players and community can help get New Orleans back on their feet like they attend to.
Tulane and Southern Miss have also postponed their game, which was supposed to be nationally televised on Sunday afternoon. It now appears that the game will be made up on November 26. This could make the game even bigger, as it could be a Conference USA Championship Preview by that point, or at least have ramifications on the title chase.
In a surprising twist, Joe Ayoob was beaten out for his quarterback job at California by Nate Longshore. Few people saw this one coming. Longshore is a redshirt freshman, while Ayoob is a junior college transfer. It is still popularly believed that Ayoob could go the rout of Aaron Rodgers and wind up stealing the job away (the year after transferring in from junior college) by midseason. This seems like a stretch to me, because it is going to be tough to wrestle away the job from Longshore until the team loses. With the Bears schedule this year, they may not lose a whole lot.
Pete Carroll, USC- "The national championships aren't in our control. What we can control, we work toward."
Sean O'Keefe, LSU's Chancellor- "The scope of this tragedy is becoming more evident as time passes, and LSU's focus is on assisting in the recovery effort of our state."
Mack Brown, Texas (on Texas 52-10 win)- "We know we have a tough opponent in UL Lafayette. The last time we played, they got an interception, kicked a field goal and got us down 10-0 before we made a great comeback."
Dan McCarney, Iowa State- "Like everybody else, we're still undefeated, and this is an exciting and anxious time of year. "
Jim Grobe, Wake Forest- "I tell a lot of people that last year we had a better team than some of the teams that played in bowl games; we just played in a great league, and I think Vanderbilt is the same way. They had five games go right to the wire last year, and we had seven go down to the wire. We're just playing in great conferences. "
THE WEEKLY RANT
This section will be used each week for the fan to respond. If you are frustrated about something, let me know. Don't like something I said? Don't like something someone else said? You get to rant here. So e-mail me your rant, I'll read through them and pick out one that goes into this spot.