Thursday, September 15, 2011

Badger Preview: Northern Illinois

Well that certainly didn't go as expected.  I mean, yeah, we won and won big, but I don't think many people envisioned Oregon State successfully stopping our running game like that.  True, we eventually wore them down and started pounding the rock.  But I'm sure future opponents were taking note that running those safeties up to the line can be very effective in slowing down our bread and butter.  And for most programs, that would spell trouble.  But not Wisconsin.  At least not as long as this guy is still here:


Black Jesus might be the best thing that has ever happened to the state of Wisconsin.  OTHER CONTENDERS*:
When you list them out like that, I think Black Jesus wins by a LANDSLIDE.

FACT: Russell Wilson has thrown 7 incompletions thus far.  Of those 7, 2 were thrown away and 2 were drops.  I can actually recall with surprising accuracy each of his incompletions.  He has been that accurate so far this season.  Incredible stuff.  I can't believe some people were worried about him fitting in with the team in such short time.  If the Big Lebowski has taught us anything, it's that nobody fucks with the (Black) Jesus.


That's actually pretty terrifying.

I need a Halloween costume and I think I just found it.  Seriously, check out the whole outfit:


I would give myself 20 minutes before losing the bowling ball.  If you bring a prop out for Halloween and it's not tied to you in some way, it will be destroyed and/or lost.  That's Halloween 101 right there.  I see someone with a fun prop and I am TAKING that shit.  Second semester Halloween is if you dress in a large box, you are basically announcing to the world that you'd like to be treated like a giant pinata.  Who doesn't love smashing a box on Halloween?**

*So I Wikipedia'd (this needs to be a word now like google and text are) Wisconsin.  It is APPALLING that our state drink is not beer.  I get that dairy is huge and milk is everywhere, but come the fuck on.  If you think about it, in Wisconsin milk is really like everyone else's water, and beer is like everyone else's milk.  So I'm not saying that it makes perfect sense to change our state drink to beer, but if you think about it it kinda does.  Plus, how many other states can let you get 35 DUI's before deciding that maybe, just MAYBE you shouldn't be driving a car anymore?  Florida?  Russia?  It's a short and distinguished list.

**Boom, intentional.

CHICAGO BADGERS: Two possible scenarios here:
  1. You're not an idiot and you're going to Soldier Field to see your school play in 15 minutes away from you.
  2. You're an idiot and you're going home for the weekend.
I hate my life.

SHAMELESS PLUGS: The Hot GloveBrent FavreBP BlogTumblr.  I still have no clue what I'm doing with that Tumblr page.

Also, esteemed UW grad Tim Shovers was selected to write for the Badgers Roundtable on the Journal Sentinel's Badger Blog.  Good stuff there after every game if you're looking for some deeper football analysis.

NOTE: First try with the whole Bcc move.  I'm usually against that, but that should prevent the dreaded reply-all that everyone hates.  And if you hate my previews, now you can just tell me instead of the whole world!  Win/win.


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10) Qdoba Queso Burrito/Henry

Yup, it's another chain mexican-type fast food establishment.  But let me be the first to say: Qdoba > Chipotle, and it's not even close.  And there's no way I'm the only one who spent YEARS calling it Chipolte.  I think that sounds 100x better than Chipotle.  It's a subtle difference, but I think they would be 9 times as successful if they made that change.

Anyway, the queso is really what separates glorious Qdoba from overrated Chipotle.  The queso is SO good that they even have a food truck here in Chicago DEDICATED to queso.  Seriously.  They tossed a comedian in a truck, and he goes around giving out free chips and queso.  That's the best idea since my customized rape whistle business plan last week.  I even drew up a prototype:


But not only are you getting a dank meal at Qdoba (that's very affordable and super quick), but you're getting an elite customer service experience.  Much like Heather at TB, Henry runs the late night show at Qdoba.  Things he has going for him:
  • Extremely nice
  • Will gladly entertain your Drunk-Spanish skills (mine are straight dirty)
  • Has a ponytail
  • He's an extremely nice guy who will happily talk in Spanish with you, all while having a ponytail, how are you possibly not sold yet?
My biggest mistake in life is currently between not remaining friends with Henry post-graduation and dropping a foul ball at a Sox game.  Can't believe I dropped that fucking ball.


12) Pizza di Roma Chicken Parm & Pepperoni/Sausage Pizza

Honorable Mentions: Casa B's Slice/Breadsticks, Falbo Bro's Chicken Parm Sub, Za's Cajun Alfredo Pasta with Pepperoni and Garlic, Jamie's Cookie Cakes


NIU Head Coach Dave Doeren vs. UW Head Coach Bret Bielema

Is that lame?  Whatever, it's true.  Doeren is in his first season as head coach of the Huskies after serving as the defensive coordinator under Bielema.  As a result, these coaches know a hell of a lot about each other's tendencies.  The UW coaching staff is on record saying that they're going to change up their hand signals, so that should tell you all you need to know to understand how much familiarity there is between these coaches.  For the record, I always kinda thought the D was a little soft under Doeren, especially the secondary.  I'm expecting Bielema (and Ash) to bust out some looks we haven't seen yet.

NIU QB Chandler Harnish vs. UW Defense

This should be a nice test for Bucky.  Harnish is experienced, a capable thrower, and an above average runner - the type of quarterback that typically gives defenses fits.  And not that I'm looking ahead (I'M REALLY NOT TRYING TO), but when Nebraska rolls in to Madison in a few weeks, we're going to face an extremely mobile quarterback.  This will be a nice test for our defense - hold their edges, linebacker containment, pressure from the front four, and man coverage on the corners.  Excel in those departments and this team has no ceiling.  Which is a weird way to talk about something being really good, because I associate the lack of a ceiling with people living in some third world country.  I guess what I'm trying to say is we can be really freaking good this year.


Alkaline Trio - Nose Over Tail (Acoustic)

It's weird that this is good.  In case you don't like rocking out, Trio usually blasts guitars in your face.  But they released an album called 'Damnesia' that is mostly a stripped down version of their songs.  Very well done and I really enjoyed it.  Plus, Nose Over Tail is one of my favorite songs by them.

Foo Fighters - Arlandria

It's always a nervous moment for me when a band I really like releases a new album.  What if it sucks?  What if they go from an awesome punk-ish/kinda emo/slightly alternative band to some atmospheric synth bullshit group (WHY GET UP KIDS, WHY?)?  That's not really a concern with FF.  Every album they release has at least a handful of awesome songs.  It's not really a surprise either, because Dave Grohl pisses excellence.  This is without a doubt the best song on their newest album.  I can't believe I missed these guys at Lolla.  I am just stupid as all hell.

Sublime - Doin' Time (AKA Summertime)

I refuse to believe that the actual name for this song is 'Doin' Time'.  It has forever been in my iTunes as 'Summertime', which makes a lot more sense.  Not to mention that summer has a much more positive connotation than prison.  Regardless, this song was featured in Dave Mirra's BMX Biking for Dreamcast, which was better than any Tony Hawk game ever, and that's not even a question.  I love when a song immediately takes you to a specific time/place.  This song does that for me.


Game in Chicago:

If they try to stuff the run?



This isn't an original video or anything, but this scene is amazing.

I'm Jeffrey!  My wife has varicose veins!

This video was on THG a long time ago, but I still find it amazing.  It's also why I consider Europeans to be absolutely fucking insane.

I just came across this link for no apparent reason.  I still find myself quoting it at least 3 times a month.  Pure genius.


This section is in a one-week suspension due to Maddy turning into Psycho Pup.  Chewing through speaker wires, eating couches, snacking on shoelaces, peeing everywhere... BAD DOG.



I'm gonna have to totally agree here - I think an underground bare-knuckle boxing fight would be absolutely amazing to see in person.  I'm essentially picturing this fight.  Hot Shots: Part Deux was a real high quality film.  I have no idea how people come up with such bizarrely absurd comedy, but I dig it.

Oh yeah, one thing Groth is wrong about: I can find ANYTHING on the internet machine.  I don't care if you're looking for underground bare-knuckle boxing fights, meth, or anything in between.  Give me 2 hours and I'll locate it.  Come to think of it, I bet the guys who could point you towards underground bare-knuckle boxing fights and meth know each other.  Might be a two birds with one stone type of thing.

I also find myself wondering if anyone has actually killed two birds with one stone.  Why the fuck are you throwing rocks at birds?

I know I like to poke fun, but this makes just a little bit too much sense.  Well said.



Vegas, baby.  This is from the UNLV game last year, but it doesn't matter when it's from because I get In-N-Out at least once every time I visit the west coast.  I really do think it's that good.

On the left are the animal style fries - grilled onions, melted cheese, their special sauce (which is pretty much just 1000 island, but oh well).  To the right is a double double (two patties, two pieces of cheese) - also animal style.  Just flipping amazing.  And not only is their food great, but they have a SECRET MENU.  God I feel like such an elitist for a) knowing they have a secret menu, and b) ordering off it.  You won't see animal style anywhere on the menu above the counter.  You also won't see a 3x3 or 4x4 on the menu, but you can order those as well (the first number is the number of patties, the second being the number of slices of cheese.  Dangerous game right there).  It really makes me think I'm cool.



Glorious night at the UIC softball field.


I can't help but wonder - how does one become a subway conductor?  Do you go to real train conductor school and drop out?  Are subway conductors the dentists of the train conductor world?  BETTER question: How much do they get paid?  Because if it's more than I'm making now (it probably is), I think I'm in for a career change.  Seems like a pretty cushy job, right?  And I think it looks really badass when they're hanging out the window up front just looking back like, 'Yeahhhh, this is MY motherfucking train!  All aboard, bitches!'

And there's definitely some skill involved - don't think otherwise.  There's no other way to explain why some conductors can smoke through turns at 25 mph while others are creepin' along at 4 mph.  That's pure skill, just gotta feel it and lean into the turn.

OK, now I'm picturing myself driving a train and having to jump the track like a combination of the bus scene and the subway scene from Speed.  Holy shit that would be the coolest thing ever.  While we're on the subject, that bus jump in Speed was so outrageous that it kinda bothers me.  Why does the bus just randomly pop up in the front?  If anything, shouldn't it have dropped down a little?  I know the guys on Mythbusters attacked this one, and all it did was leave me wondering, 'Really?  You guys couldn't use a little common sense?'  Ugh.

NOTE: I fucking love Speed.  I used to pause it (on my VCR - bolding something already in caps is like double capitalizing it, for the record) right when Dennis Hopper's head gets knocked off on top of the train.  I felt like Sherlock Holmes when I concluded that it was, in fact, a dummy.


So I may have been a little off with my prediction last week (who honestly thought they could slow our running game down like that?), but at least it was the good kind of wrong because our defense as much improved and kept Oregon State off the scoreboard.  Such a good sign - Borland and Taylor making plays all over the place, Cromartie stepping up once Devin Smith went down, etc.  But this game will be much more indicative of what kind of defense we really have.  It's not a stretch to say that Northern's defense is pretty soft.  They've given up roughly 800 rushing yards per game.  But their offense is pretty damn good.  We're gonna win, but I think they're gonna score enough to make people want to stick around until the end of the game.  The pick:



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