Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Hail To The Redskins

So the Giants lost to the Redskins?

Somewhere, MotherBlog was smiling.

The last two days have been a pretty good reminder for TigerBlog about what he misses most about his mother, who passed away nearly 22 years ago. A Giants-Redskins game Sunday and a Presidential debate Monday?

About the only thing that could have made it better for her would have been a Steve McQueen movie marathon in between, though she'd only need the scene near the end of "The Great Escape" where McQueen - without a stunt double - hops the barbed wire fences on a motorcycle.

MotherBlog died before she ever had a cell phone or email. Still, if she was still around (she'd be closing in on her 77th birthday were she alive today), TB's phone would have been buzzing every five seconds, between the Skins' rally past the Giants and the debate last night.

As a long-time resident of the D.C. area, she loved the Redskins and politics. Her favorites at the time? John Riggins and Walter Mondale. Or was it Joe Theismann and Jay Rockefeller?

MotherBlog was a huge football fan, but only the NFL. TB doesn't remember talking too much college football with her, though she did root for Georgia by the end of her life, after she'd moved from D.C. to Atlanta.

As such, TigerBlog roots for Georgia too, even if the Bulldogs always let him down.

In fact, if TigerBlog had to give you the three college football teams he roots for the most, it would be Georgia, Sacred Heart and Princeton.

TB is pretty sure you already know this, but Sacred Heart blew out 24th-ranked Stony Brook Saturday night, improving to 4-0 on the season. And that was on the road.

As for Princeton, the Tigers are 1-1, with a win over Lafayette and a loss to Lehigh.

Up next for the Tigers is Columbia, in the Ivy League opener. That game is in New York City this Saturday and kicks off at noon, on Fox College Sports and Fox Sports Go.

Columbia is 0-2 on the year, with losses to St. Francis (Pa.) and Georgetown.

There have been 53 total points scored in Columbia's first two games. Princeton's first two games have seen an average of 68.

Columbia's first two games have seen an average of 588 yards per game. Princeton's first two games have seen an average of 919.5 yards per game.

What does it mean? Princeton's games have been pretty wide open. Columbia's have been tight defensive struggles.

It's only two games, so it's hard to say that these are definitive patterns. Still, it is 20 percent of the season already.

The biggest place this yardage difference can be seen is in passing yardage. Princeton has allowed 410 yards through the air per game through two games; Columbia has thrown for 254 yards in its two games combined.

Again, a performance like the one that Lehigh quarterback Nick Shafnisky had on Saturday skews the numbers so early in a season. Still, it's certainly an intriguing matchup, a team that doesn't throw much against a team that has struggled to stop its first two opponents in the air. 

The most interesting Princeton stats through two weeks to TigerBlog involve touchdowns.

First, Princeton has scored eight touchdowns, and all eight have come on the ground. Second, Princeton is one of two teams in Division I (FBS or FCS) to have scored a touchdown on every trip into the red zone.

Princeton has made seven red zone trips and scored seven touchdowns (he's not 100% how exactly a red zone trip is defined). The only other team in Division I to do so is Delaware State, who has scored two touchdowns on two red zone trips.

The Columbia game is the only Ivy game in the first four weeks of the season for the Tigers, who are at Georgetown next week. The first goal of every season is to be 1-0 in the Ivy League. That would set up the back-to-back home games against Brown (Oct. 15) and Harvard (Oct. 22) nicely. 

Anyway, FatherBlog turned 81 yesterday. What did he do to celebrate? He went to work. That's what he does.

It dawned on TB that BrotherBlog is actually older now than MotherBlog was when she died. That's a hard concept to consider.

It's not worth contemplating why some people die young and others are still going to work in their 80s. It's just how it works.

All you can do is think about the people who aren't here anymore and remember them as they were. Some days, like the last two for TigerBlog, it's so easy to do that.

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