Predictions: What’s inscribed for Dogs in Knoxville Book of Misery?

According to Jewish legend, which is better than normal legend because it comes with deli all except one day a year, Moses did not eat for 40 days when he received the Ten Commandments from Jehovah because he was in the presence of God. This was considered an even more important time in history than when Lane Kiffin received his playbook at Alabama in the presence of Nick Saban, which did not work out nearly as well. (Newest Testament: Book of Jesters.)

(If a lightning bolt should strike me before I finish this column, please carry on my mission: Be kind to strangers and slash Bobby Petrino’s tires.)

Back to fasting. I’m not sure if I can make it through 24 hours this weekend, when my people observe Yom Kippur, which literally translates to, “Put down the hoagie, pork pie.”

Observant Jews starve themselves because it seems like the right thing to do when we atone for our sins at the end of a 10-day soul-cleansing period, when we ask forgiveness for things like cursing, throwing your dinner plate at the television and saying Tennessee would cover 27½ against UMass.

I fasted even as a kid, when our services in Los Angeles were so large that my temple moved the congregation to the Fox Theater in Westwood, which was directly across the street from Mario’s Italian restaurant, which led to our family tradition of ending a fast with fettuccine alfredo. (This is not recommended. Imagine taking the smallest, tightest deflated balloon and then blowing it up with an industrial air compressor. But we figured, if Mario’s was across the street from God’s place, Moses would’ve done the same.)

(No lighting bolt yet.)

This is the time of year when God inscribes each person’s fate in the “Book of Life.” For some reason, He has been quite mean to Georgia when it comes to the Tennessee trip. Thumbing through the Book of Splats:

• 2007: Georgia is ranked 12th. Volunteers coach Phil Fulmer’s job is in jeopardy. Georgia falls behind 28-0 in the first 20 minutes and loses 35-14.

• 2009: Tennessee is 0-2 in the SEC. Georgia’s offense never gets into the red zone. Vols quarterback throws for 310 yards (second-most in his career, behind only the Memphis game). Bulldogs lose 45-19.

• 2011: No locusts.

• 2013: Georgia wins 34-31 in overtime, but loses tailback Keith Marshall and others after having already lost Todd Gurley. Coach Mark Richt walks into the news conference and immediately cuts his finger on an old table. I’m not making that up. Asked about injuries, he says: “I just don’t know what the carnage is right now.”

• 2015: Nick Chubb blows out his knee on Georgia’s first play from scrimmage. It loses 38-31 to a 2-3 team.

• 2017: Mercy?

This is a game the Bulldogs should win. They’re 4-0, face a Tennessee team that barely beat UMass (17-13) and coach Butch Jones tore a sheet out of the Overmatched Coaches Playbook this week, berating the media for excessive negativity about his poopy program.

Weird stuff happens in Knoxville, but I can’t imagine the Vols’ offense making a dent in Georgia’s defense. Let there be normalcy? Yes. Dogs cover 7½.

Some music to soothe Butch

Between Mandatory Classes (Optional)

Looking live at the NCAA’s enforcement team in the North Carolina case.

UNC Correctional Institute at Georgia Tech: Is it possible that when the FBI finishes its investigation into college basketball in 10 or 12 years, it can pick up the NCAA’s case on academic fraud at North Carolina. I’m sure the other ACC schools would be happy to share costs. Yellow Jackets win, but take the Heels and 9½.

Mississippi State at Auburn: The good news for Dan Mullen is three of the next four games are at home against BYU, Kentucky and UMass, which should be enough to get Mississippi State to Shreveport, or as Starkville residents like to call it: the beach. Tigers win, but take MSU and 9.

Miami at Duke: Mark Richt was asked about the FBI’s college basketball corruption case, which fingers Miami, and he said: “It’s the FBI? I’m sure they know what they’re talking about. I doubt they’re making up stories. So the bottom line is, if people aren’t behaving like they should, there needs to be consequences.” (School president scratches Richt off list of character witnesses.) Hurricanes cover 6½.

Murray State at Louisville: Rick Pitino is gone. Tom Jurich is gone. Who’s the last one-cell organism left standing in Louisville? Bobby Petrino. Oh dear. Home alone. Cardinals cover 48½.

Bobby Petrino: Home Alone

Florida State at Wake Forest: The Seminoles (0-2) haven’t won a game for nine months. I just wanted to know what it felt like to type that out. FSU covers 7½.

Ole Miss at Alabama: Hugh Freeze’s level doesn’t-get-it-ness remains high. He asked for forgiveness from Ole Miss fans in a statement, but he referenced only his felonious whoopee-making with an escort service, not the 21 NCAA violations hovering over the program. Note to Hugh: philandering with an “independent contractor” in heels is between you and the Mrs. But when the Rebels get hit with a 700-pound mallet, that’s when you should apologize to fans. Today: pain. Tide covers 27½.

The official cereal of the Florida Gators.

Clemson at Virginia Tech: If the Hokies are the second-best team in the ACC, we’re about to find out the size of the gorge between Nos. 1 and 2. Clemson covers 7½.

Vanderbilt at Florida: I’m not sure how many souls the Gators had to sell to escape with victories over Tennessee and Kentucky. For that matter, who knew there were any souls left in Gainesville after the Urban Meyer era? Gators win, but take Vanderbilt and 10.

Troy at LSU: Fans in Baton Rouge can watch a well-coached football team Saturday. And then there’s LSU. Tigers win, but take Troy and 21.

NFL Snack Pack

Bills at Falcons: The Falcons outscored the Detroit Lions 14-0 in replay reversals last week. Any chance they can do better during live action, or is their season going to come down to really good cinematography? Birds are banged up on offense and defense, including Julio Jones with a bad back.  Kind of a dangerous game. But Falcons win and cover 7½.

Cam Newton has successfully executed stretching exercises this season, but not much else. (AP photo)

Panthers at Patriots: The new Cam Newton: 2 touchdowns, 4 interceptions and 29th in passer rating (69.7) in the NFL (behind Jay Cutler, Brian Hoyer and the kid who always gets picked last for dodgeball. New England covers 9.

Steelers at Ravens: The Ravens have played the Bengals, Browns and Jaguars. But this isn’t the first time they’ve had a stacked jury. Steelers cover 3.

Saints vs. Dolphins: Miami gave up a home game to play in London this week. Given the offense has scored two touchdowns in eight quarters, Dolphins fans are good with that. Saints cover 3.

Accountability scoreboard

“Gambling is a disease of barbarians superficially civilized.” — Dean Inge

Last week: 14-1 straight up, 9-6 against the line

Toteboard: 43-8 straight up, 30-20-1 against the line.

Sack Schultz 2017: I’ve dropped to 97th place in contest picks, according to the vendor. This must be a mistake. Weekly winners were Robert Davenport (Loganville) and Grady Thompson (Greenville, S.C.) To enter, go to AJC.com/sackschultz2017.

Lilly’s pick:  The mutt is 3-1. This week, we cheese’d pictures of Dogs quarterbacks Jacob Eason and Jake Fromm (right) and Vols QB Quinten Dormady (left). Lilly darted — LEFT! She’s going with the upset: Tennessee.

Lilly (3-1) is picking the upset in Knoxville.

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Digital jukebox

Reader Comments 0

144 comments
OH:IO
OH:IO

Barbara:


We're #7! We're  #7!

YouLibs
YouLibs

Where is that place where the wind comes sweeping down the plain?


Oh yeah, Oklahoma.

YouLibs
YouLibs

Has Lilly had her shots?

TOJacket
TOJacket

Anybody watch Thursday Night Football?...who won?

Grant1296
Grant1296

Best thing about being a degenerate gambler... Ya don't have to watch, ya don't have to go... Just check your balance in the AM.

OH:IO
OH:IO

Cheating college basketball coaches should be punished by having to watch every SEC East game every week. If you want to stop cheating, you have to make the punishments so severe that nobody would risk it.


-theozone


SEC! SEC! 

OH:IO
OH:IO

Is Barbara back in he/she/it/q's basement?

Grant1296
Grant1296

Techeye knows what I mean...

You're kinda slow Caryd...

OH:IO
OH:IO

@TOJacket @Grant1296


Urban was critiquing the play a few weeks ago and mentioned the kick-off game (like the 5th or 6th thing) given an OB penalty. dogs are running with it. woof woof. 

Big Wally
Big Wally

It's Friday, that means it is time for some Big 10 football.  Great matchup tonight, Illinios, who gets the crap kicked out of it by an AAC team, vs Nebraska, the team that got punched in the mouth by a MAC team, at home.


Ah Big 10 football, so much excitement.

OH:IO
OH:IO

Babs needs to get out of the basement, put the joystick down and get some much needed sun.

Grant1296
Grant1296

Kinda hard to get much worse than Norman...

Although I'm sure it can be done...

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Remind me what happens when OSU plays ranked teams.....62-16.

UGA = 2-0

#neworder

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Hey "mental problem" you guys patch that hole in the turf yet that Mayfeild planted?

OH:IO
OH:IO

Babs:


We're #7 We're # 7

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

And you are not! And you are not!

New order. Bucknuts on the outside looking in.

62-16 does that to you!

Carl Smith 053
Carl Smith 053

Best jolt of endorphins I've had all week!  One of your best "all times" from top to bottom, Jeff.  I told you at a half time in the press box of a UGA game years ago that you need to write a book.  Now  I would say, maybe two.  Forgive me if you already have written said book and I missed it.

DawginLex
DawginLex

UGA game will be close at hillbilly, toothless wonderland. Always is. They lowdown, they dirty, they some snitches. Late FG wins it.

Tech blows out UNC by 20+. 

Vandy upsets Florida 20-17.

DawginLex
DawginLex

@TOJacket @DawginLex It's UNC. No DL and weak at linebacker. Can't handle the pitch or the dive. GT might not have to throw a pass

Mulk
Mulk

@DawginLex This place needs more of this kind of stuff - predictions. Like it.

CoronaGT
CoronaGT

@DawginLex @TOJacket True, Tech should be able to score a lot, but our defense has had trouble with UNC's up-tempo offense the past couple of years.  Our defense will have to handle their offense better or else it will be another shoot-out.


I agree that UGA-TN games are usually close at Neyland, and strange things can happen in Hillbilly Haven.  But TN has trouble with the run, and if Fromm can stay poised in the most hostile place he has played so far and be successful passing early, I think that will open up Georgia's running game.  I have a feeling Georgia will win by double digits.