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Some of you asked questions, and now you have to suffer through the consequences.

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Hurricane Irma had an impact on this week’s mailbag. We’re glad you’re safe, Townie!
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Once again, you answered the call and gave us questions. Thank you. Almost all of us appreciate the opportunity to think about things that may not always cross our minds. As always, management would like to apologize for Speth.

How many more wins does Lovie Smith need to lock up B1G Coach of the Year and an extension? --Waw

WSR: I think Brohm’s already locked up coach of the year with Purdue’s 1 victory and 1 moral victory, hasn’t he? All that’s left now is for Lovie to get a guaranteed contract after another win (HELLO RUTGERS!), then retire and laugh his way to the bank.

BRT: One more or equal to Brohm, and also beating Purdue.

Jesse: How realistic/serious are we being? Because a non-con win against the Bulls this weekend, and three B1G wins might just do the trick. Of course, I don’t think Illinois wins that many.

MNW: I am triggered and offended by this question. Dennis Green needed to win two conference games (Minnesota and Michigan State) and, after losing to Miami Hyrdoxide, beat Northern Illinois. That’s what earns you B1G Coach of the Year if you’re shitty.

LPW: 2

Townie: Undefeated with an upset of OSU…

Creighton: How much eligibility does Rex Grossman have left?

Speth: He can't win enough games. PJ Fleck yo. I'm hammered. You've been warned.

In which stadium would you be most excited to plant your school's flag at midfield after a win? --MountainTiger

WSR: Rose Bowl.

BRT: Well, Michigan or OSU’s would be exciting because it would mean we won there, which would be a small miracle at the present time (not the least of which because we’ve recently learned it’s impossible to stick a flag in OSU’s field.) However, I think Wisconsin or Iowa might actually be more satisfying, because QoH.

MNW: See and Michigan or Penn State were my thoughts, because there would be that moment of--wait, Northwestern did what?! and then Penn State fans would throw poop balloons at the Northwestern bus for every visit in eternity.

Jesse: Are we talking on sheer pettiness or because I’m happy? Very different answers. Sheer pettiness would be the middle of Darrell K Royal, because that sounds fun. As far as, “Oh my goodness, we finally won something”, I hate admitting that all I want is a big red N in the middle of whatever it is called in Indianapolis.

Candystripes: While I would like to agree with WSR, the amount of things that would have to go right to make that happen doesn’t seem feasible in this lifetime, so I’d settle with pulling a Mayfield and slamming the flag into the Horseshoe’s Block O. Except, you know, I’d try to make it stick.

LPW: Rose Bowl first. Then Ohio Stadium. We haven’t won in either of those places in quite a long time.

Townie: Bama...cause fuck the SEC.

Creighton: MNW had the right idea. Anyone who has ever been to a game in The Big House knows that the opposing fans don’t think you or your team is even worthy of setting foot in the stadium (Iowa won, by the way) and they love to shit on you for standing up during the game or cheering too loudly or being too drunk and spilling your hot chocolate all over their lap. Planting a flag at midfield would cause them to short circuit and the other 13 teams in the league would share a wonderful memory for all eternity.

Speth: Well our main rival sucks ass and we already chop down their goalposts regularly so that's no fun. I'd say after Wisconsin improbably wins a national championship. Will also settle for Soldier Field because win over Notre Dame and go pack go, fuck the Bears.

What drink/food/game/movie/t.v. show/life experience has the biggest disparity from"Wow this is AWESOME" when you’re a kid to "Wow this is TERRIBLE" now that you’re an adult? --Beezer07


BRT: Just kind of the whole concept of adulthood.

Jesse: I’m with BRT unfortunately. HOWEVER, let’s just all admit that Flavorice continue be the greatest thing ever. Those are legitimately as awesome as an adult as they were when you were a kid. (also, the real answer is Pop-Tarts which are decidedly disgusting when you realize you’re eating frosting-covered cardboard with colored sugar in the middle)

LPW: I agree with WSR. The NFL

Townie: Every theme park ever, especially Disney.

Creighton: WSR is correct. Also Lunchables are cold dumpster food, Mouse Trap is too complicated to play when you’ve been drinking, Mountain Dew sucks, and the original Power Rangers tv show (not to mention the movie) has the cheapest production values and worst acting of any show you could possibly imagine.

Speth: Alcoholism. Seems ridiculously avoidable until you can't remember the last night you didn't drink.

babaoreally: American Beauty

What is the coach of your team's spirit animal? --BigRedTwice

WSR: PJ’s a hummingbird, isn’t he? Constantly moving at a blurry speed faster than the human eye can keep up with, always floating about. And nothing but an irritant for everyone else in the conference...right now.

BRT: I think Mike Riley might be an older Labrador retriever? Super nice and everyone likes him, but he’s not going to scare off any burglars or anything.

Jesse: I watched this documentary on sloths once. You know, all things considered, they are anything but lazy, definitely very loyal, and hey, they probably beat USC once. They also are highly inefficient at times and nobody actually wants to be a sloth. Sloth is Mike Riley’s spirit animal.

Townie: He looks like a Meerkat, doesn’t he? I’m going with Meerkat...

Look at that face. You can tell it calls all the other animals “Akron.”
National Geographic

Creighton: Kirk Ferentz is an antarctic deep sea sponge. Some specimens are estimated to be up to 10,000 years old. Some of them have seen the rise and fall of entire civilizations, and they just keep chugging along. Similarly, Kirk Ferentz may not be the most lively coach, he may not produce the most exciting product and at times he does just barely enough to survive. But he’s the dean of coaches. He’s been around since before you ever heard your coach’s name, and he’ll get a contract extension that long outlasts the date where your coach will be fired.

Speth: Paul Chryst resembles a black bear and black bears are native to Wisconsin just like Paul Chryst so I'll say black bear. Also they're unspectacular animals but they are ruthlessly effective at what they do.

babaoreally: Well, my team’s spirit animal is a fistulated cow. I’m gonna say that fistualted cow’s coach is the crazy guy from Grizzly Man.

If you could take back one fashion choice that you made growing up, what would be? --Vaudvillain

WSR: Jeans in any color other than blue.

BRT: I did once have an ill-advised perm. Does that count as a fashion choice? It was a bad choice, no matter what category it falls into.

MNW: Jean shorts, easily. That, and how my parents would shave my head every summer from when I was six until about 12-13. Thanks, Mom and Dad.

LPW: I’m with MNW. Jorts. Those were bad.

Jesse: I am Korean. I have very thick, black hair. It is incredibly puffy when you don’t put product in it. In high school, I tried both (a) growing it out, and (b) frosting the tips. It ended up just being a gross looking orange tipped mess of hair. Mistakes were made friends.

Townie: The center hair part. The 80’s man...the 80’s.

Creighton: I think there was a period where I wouldn’t wear any pants that didn’t have cargo pockets. Shorts, jeans, khakis...whatever. I told myself it was a utilitarian choice, but I definitely just thought they looked cool for some reason.

Speth: Wind pants you could zip off into shorts. No further comment needed.

babaoreally: I once had a pair of red jeans.

If Nebraska loses to Purdue in Ross Ade again is it even considered a harboring? --GlassJawsh

WSR: It’s still a harboring until Purdue is bowl eligible and therefore “decent” again, isn’t it?

BRT: Not if Purdue is good and Nebraska is bad, which is the popular #narrative this season so far.

Candystripes: Only if Nebraska is ranked at the time. You can’t harbor a team outside the top 25; that’s just called “winning the game.” Of course, I’m probably the last person who should be concerned with defining this terminology.

LPW: If Brohm has Purdue on the right track (these puns write themselves), it won’t be a harboring. Let’s check in on this in a few weeks.

Creighton: This is a complicated question. I’m glad you asked. You see, if we can count on Purdue to beat Nebraska reliably every couple of years, and if Purdue is in fact a good team, then technically the answer is no. BUT: Given how good Nebraska fans expect their team to be compared to how historically shitty Purdue has been post-Tiller, the laws of Big Ten trolling demand that we shame and humiliate Nebraska all the same. Purdue Harbor all the way.

Speth: Purdue Harbor? Lol schools that don't run all over Purdue. No because Purdue will have more wins than Nebby when they play.

babaoreally: No. It’s not like the Huskers are so great that it would be crazy for Purdue to beat them.

What's the appropriate sad pizza to be consumed in a golf cart after losing to EMU?


WSR: You don’t deserve pizza after that, no matter how many of us predicted it.

BRT: The pizza that fell off the seat in the pizza guy’s 1997 Ford Windstar minivan and slid under the back seat of the van, only to be discovered three days later.

MNW: And where the cart is a shopping cart that rutger claims was the FIRST EVER golf cart.

LPW: Get a heart attack on a plate, aka any Chicago Deep Dish pizza.

Jesse: I once was in a No Frills Supermarket in Omaha - worse than it sounds - and a few friends of mine saw these clearanced pizzas for literally $0.19 apiece. I was like, “OH MAN FOR 19 CENTS WHY NOT?!?!” We went home right after that, put them in the oven and like, you just knew something was wrong. The sauce was legitimately brown, the meat looked really sketchy, and there wasn’t real cheese. My friends ate their pizzas and they regretted it immediately. I picked at a piece and threw it away. What I’m saying is, that’s probably what it’s like to lose to EMU when you suddenly believed in your team.

Speth: The kind of sad pizza you eat at the employment office because football coach isn't the job for you.

After tOSU vs. OU is the BIG DOOOOOOMED for playoff representatives? --Andy Davis

WSR: No, as long as tOSU gets back on track and runs the table. Then they need somebody (preferably not Oklahoma) in the current top 4 to drop a game. Otherwise we could be in trouble.

BRT: If either OSU or Michigan end the season with only one loss, they’ll get into the playoff. The committee just wouldn’t be able to help themselves.

MNW: Nah, Ohio State or Michigan should be able to get there with enough time. A 12-1/13-0 wisconsin (the horror) might be able to sneak their way in, too.

Candystripes: A 1-loss or fewer Big Ten team makes the playoff unless the SEC, PAC12, and ACC all have undefeated champions AND someone like a Notre Dame or late 2000’s Boise State/TCU is also undefeated and claimed an important scalp. However, if the top of the East goes cannibal and then pulls it together in Indy, there might be some concern.

LPW: It’s too early to tell

Townie: Yep, that’s the ESPN narrative now. The king fell. Michigan is the new king...when they lose, it’s all over for the B1G.

Speth: No damnit. There's no reason to think Wisconsin can't be 13-0 at this point and 13-0 Wisconsin is absolutely in the top 4. Or Penn State too I guess.

Would you rather watch your team lose to Rutgers, or watch UM win a championship? --AnnArbaughtimusPrime

WSR: Seppuku, “cutting [the] abdomen/belly”, is a form of Japanese ritual suicide by disembowelment…eer bong...

Townie: Hemlock in a beer bong...

BRT: I’ve become fairly inured to Nebraska losing to terrible teams in the past decade or so, so I could survive a Rutgers loss. I’d like Harbaugh’s non-NC streak to continue for much longer.

MNW: Part of the thing about being a Northwestern fan is that you just know it’s going to happen at some point. There’s no sense fighting it, because fighting it only exhausts you. Embrace the suck and accept that you will spend at least $200 on flights to New York just to watch Northwestern fumble four times and lose to the third-string rutger QB in a hurry-up offense. Eat Arby’s.

Jesse: I mean, I get where this is coming from, but if UM is winning a championship, there’s still a strong chance I didn’t lose to them and can just spout off stuff like, “Well, you avoided us in crossovers and Wisconsin had the tiebreaker” or some nonsense like that. Losing to Rutgers doesn’t go away that easily.

Candystripes: Well, since I’ve already done the former, the latter 250 times out of 100 if it means the former never happens again.

LPW: I would rather eat my own organs.

Creighton: I would rather lose to Rutgers and it’s not even close.

Speth: Michigan win a championship. I'd rather lose to an FCS team than that tragic excuse of a football program that is in the Big Ten. At least the FCS loss doesn't count as a fucking conference loss. Also Wisconsin is about as likely to lose to Rutgers as an FCS team.

babaoreally: I’d be cool with Michigan winning a championship in that scenario.

Who is your least favorite Big Ten school? And why is it ohio state? --BoilerUp89

WSR: That’s not how you spell “wisconsin” at all, buddy.

BRT: The school or the fanbase? School-wise, probably Penn State. It’s needlessly inaccessible and has sub-par ice cream. As for the fanbase, all of them except for mine. And some weeks, mine too.

MNW: I mean...have you met wisconsin?

Candystripes: I dunno, the Ohio State campus is real nice, and I like Columbus….unless you just mean the football team, in which case it’s still Wisconsin. They know what they did.

LPW: We haven’t beat those jerks in over a decade.

Jesse: It’s wisconsin and it’s not really that close

Townie: Lol...yep. The buckeyes it is. Or Michigan. Harbaugh is pretty hateable.

Creighton: Some combination of Penn State, Wisconsin and Michigan. Plus a dash of resentment for Rutgers for good measure. Ohio State is that next level down where I sort of don’t like them, but the level of schadenfreude I feel when they suffer isn’t quite as sweet.

Speth: As much as I want to say Minnesota for obvious reasons I'm going to say Rutgers because at least Minnesota and “Big Ten school” are things that belong together.

babaoreally: Indiana University

If the "writers" are playing a game of Survivor who would each one of you vote off the island? --bewilder2

WSR: Speth. He’d endanger the survival of the rest of us.

BRT: Yeah, also gonna have to go with Speth. Likely few practical skills, and would spend all of the time annoyingly complaining that the rum was gone.

MNW: WSR and Andrew K. I want to be the tallest on the island. Fuck those guys.

LPW: BRT. She’s probably the most dangerous out of all of us.

Jesse: I’m happily surprised I’ve survived the initial voting off the island. I have zero discernible survival skills, so this is especially dumb of you all unless you’re trying to keep me around to have a better chance at some final challenge. As for who I’m voting off? Me, surviving without modern comforts for the fun of it sounds really awful.

Townie: See I’m bringing Speth with me to the end, because when the votes go down, i’m sweeping that shit. I’m kicking off MNW or BRT, they are waaay too smart and competent.

babaoreally: Graham Filler. Gotta get rid of the alpha as soon as possible.

Creighton: I’ll lurk in the corner doing my best to go unnoticed, then when the number gets whittled down some I’ll make a dirtbag alliance with one of you (who I will inevitably betray, of course). Also Speth. I’d vote Speth.

Speth: Fuck all of you.

If you got to steal a trophy from another B1G school, which one would you choose? Follow up, does it make a difference if you have to take one of the teams for your new rival? Specifically meaning OSU and Michigan wouldn’t play each other every year if they took a trophy. If you could steal a trophy and assign it to one of your rivals, who would it be? --chitownhawkeye

WSR: Psh. I don’t want anybody else’s shitass trophies. We’ve got the best there are in the Jug, the Axe, the Pig, and the Chair. If anything, I’d want to give away Arne Carlson’s Bowling Trophy we share with PSU and make somebody else deserving play for that. Like Illinois and Rutgers.

BRT: Now that the Chair is back, I envy nothing. If I could assign a trophy to someone else, I’d make Iowa go back to fighting for the Precious Moments Figurine Trophy it had with ISU.

MNW: I love HAT. I didn’t think I would, but I’ve embraced the shittiness of a big hunk of bronze that vaguely resembles a Monopoly piece. I’d maybe steal the Land Grant (but add MORE LAZERS) and force someone weird, like Maryland, to play us for it. Because why the fuck not? It’s a bowling trophy. Let’s make it as ridiculous as possible.

LPW: I want to steal the Chair!

Jesse: I’m with BRT. The Chair is awesome. We don’t need anything else. Well, that is unless we can get a beautiful quadrangle that the QoH fight for. That would be amazing. This isn’t the question, is it.

Creighton: Chair is awesome. I wouldn’t try to steal it, just replace Minnesota as the team playing for it. Floyd is still the best trophy in the conference you big dummies.

Speth: None of them. We already have them all.

babaoreally: The axe.

If we keep dropping letters off of rutge after bad losses How long until we have to refer to them as [404 FILE NOT FOUND]? Follow-up question: given that the Boilers have looked seemingly (surprisingly?) competent so far this season, could it happen that they begin to exist and the team from Piscataway ceases to exist? --Abbas_Cincinnatus

WSR: We have a team in Piscataway? When did this happen? Do they have a football team?

LPW: What is this “Piss cat a way” you speak about?

Creighton: After you said “Piscataway ceases to exist” I forgot everything else you said and spent an hour in my head thinking about that wonderful fantasy world. What was the question again?

Speth: Purdue has always existed. I just have bad wifi. rutgers is the herpes on the asshole of the conference and I don't care if that doesn't make anatomical sense because it's absolutely true.

babaoreally: Purdue wasn’t even terrible when the Purdue doesn’t exist thing started, so I say that rutger would need to improve in order to not exist. Then, after not existing, rutger would get much worse.

Seeing as the selection committee takes strength of schedule into account, why does a team with playoff hopes schedule Akron twice? Also, if Penn State beats Ohio State again how long will it take for the "everyone is Akron" line to disappear in State College? --YinzerTerp

WSR: You just need to realize that people in the Penn State Athletic Department around the football program...they’re not very smart.

BRT: Honestly, I think it’s so that they can complain about how no one respects them after they are “overlooked” “again”. It’s admittedly anecdotal, but a substantial volume of evidence gathered here on OTE suggests that this is their favorite part of the sport.

MNW: Maybe they could build a statue to learn from their history, though, BRT. Have we pitched that idea to Penn State? I bet two historians like ourselves could convince ‘em.

Townie: Look you know Penn State can’t beat Ohio State. It’s unpossible...

Creighton: I think the first coach to beat Penn State this year needs to compare Penn State to Akron in the post-game presser or he gets suspended for the remainder of the year.

Speth: As a Wisconsin fan I wouldn't comment on newborn baby soft noncon schedules.

What's your next big purchase going to be? -- LL Sota


BRT: An avocado for my toast. I’m a broke-ass Millennial, you know.

MNW: A house, followed by using the pennies remaining to help pay for my wedding. It’s also why I am not making the big purchase this weekend of flying back to Chicago to watch NU-Bowling Green.

If you’re reading this, honey, I’m definitely not bitter.

LPW: I might buy two more 27 inch monitors for my desk at home. Or a 4K TV. Or a Nintendo switch.

Jesse: I was unaware of the idea of year-round outside time until I moved to Texas, but did you know people eat on their patios more than four months out of the year? So my next big purchase is an expansion of this whole patio life, and hopefully that includes a brand new smoker/grill because that sounds like an excellent idea.

Townie: Hmmm, maybe the new Bote Rover;

Creighton: I’m being frugal and saving my money. When we move out of Charlottesville I’d like to have a pretty good down payment saved up for a house. Pinching pennies wherever I can.

/Buys Xbox One X, a $30 bottle of beer, spends $60 on chicken wings because I couldn’t decide what flavor I wanted, buys magic beans from a grifter on the way home…

Speth: I'm actually trying to hammer out the details on buying a bar. So a bar probably.

babaoreally: I really hope Speth buys a bar...a bar of soap!

So there you have it! Another episode of random whimsy to help you coast to your weekend.