Cajun's hair nearly deploys upon impact: Tennessee Volunteers shatter Louisiana-Lafayette 59-7

Back late from the homecoming game, so just a few quick thoughts tonight with the pretty stuff to follow tomorrow.

  • Louisiana-Lafayette's starting center had this big, long poofy ponytail that snuck out the back of his helmet and wiggled in the breeze like a squirrel tied to a car antenna. At one moment in time, when the thing was completely obscuring his helmet because he was looking at the quarterback through his legs, I had the horrifying thought that he was starting the play without any headgear. In the end, I rationalized that it would have been just fine because I was almost certain that his hair would deploy upon impact and save the day.
  • The defense gave up seven points, and when I say "defense" I mean "one guy on defense," and when I say "one guy on defense," I mean Jonathan Hefney. Hefney missed at least three tackles on that drive, two of them very badly, and one of them on an absolute whiff. Are our DBs taught to tackle by diving at a ball carrier's legs? Really, that's not a rhetorical question. We do it so often that that must be the case. Is there an Eighth Maxim I don't know about? Lay down and make like a speed bump. News flash: we may sometimes exclaim that ball carriers have "wheels," but they don't really have wheels, and lumps on the ground are easily avoided by bipeds.
  • Woo for the somebody that blocked the punt and woo for Antonio Wardlow for snatching the ball out of the air and running it in for a touchdown when it finally returned to this atmosphere. If this had been the Super Bowl, the deflection would have caused a PR nightmare for Goodyear. If it had been played in Arkansas, it would have prevented the unfurling of the Fire Nutt banner. If it had been . . . it was high, okay?
  • Speaking of . . . our running backs are going to be just fine without LaMarcus Coker. My in-game internal dialog re: Lennon Creer: Hey, Creer's in the game. Cool, let's see how he does. Hmm, looks a lot like Foster, running to the corner. Wait. He's still going. Oh! He actually made the corner and kept going! Novelty! Okay, well that looked good, but it was just one run. Wait. He did it again! And again and again and again. Did that sign just say seven carries for 109 yards and a 15 yard average? That's better than the two guys ahead of him on the depth chart. Wait, he must be playing against ULL's 2s, right? No? Well, then he's playing against a very tired defense. Make mental note not to get too carried away about him on the blog. Make mental note that I will probably fail.
  • The crowd? Pathetic. The announced attendance of 96,000 was generous.
  • If you watch the replay tomorrow, do not miss Antonio Reynolds' interception return for a touchdown. DeAngelo Willingham, I think it was, tipped the ball on an attempted screen pass, and Reynolds plucked it out of the air and set course for the end zone, a journey that, like Gone with the Wind, almost required an intermission. The denouement was the move he made at around the 10 where the QB had the angle on him and was going to help him out of bounds. The big guy actually juked him, and the QB went flying harmlessly into the coaching staff. The last ten yards to the end zone served primarily as credits set to celebratory song.
  • Also, don't turn the replay off in the fourth quarter. Jonathan Crompton et al looked just as good as Ainge and Co. In addition to the Creer Show, there was Gerald Jones, who took two snaps at the QB position and scored on one of them, and Kenny O'Neal, who caught a 50-yard-ish touchdown pass from Crompton.

Anyway, that's all I have for now. More tomorrow, including the moving pictures.

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