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Fall’s Tarts, Week One: The Silly, the Stupid, and the Stunningly Weird of the Big Ten

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It’s Purdue’s world, and the rest of us are just living in it.

NCAA Football: Purdue at Nevada David Calvert-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back! Now that you’ve gorged yourself (I hope) on college football during the first loooong weekend of it (seriously, so many Friday night games), I hope you’re ready for the return of Fall’s Tarts, a weekly feature where we recap the dumbest things our teams (and sometimes, other people’s teams) did over the weekend. We’re talking really dumb—here’s a highlight from last year, when Rutgers just forgot to field a kick-off:

Or when two Huskers tackled each other, as the Benny Hill Theme played over the stadium speakers:

Ah, memories.

But this year, series-favorite Rutgers is nowhere to be seen (although that first quarter was pretty damnable)! Instead, we’ve got Minnesota and Purdue doing the heavy lifting. Hit it, losers:

“Numbers are Hard,” a Duet ft. Purdue and Illinois

Purdue, whilst in the midst of melting down in epic fashion in Reno, snuck in a fun little detail that some eagle-eyed observers (the officials) noticed... they had two #4s on the field for a punt. Whoops.

However, while this is a special enough incident on its own, Illinois reputedly did this as well, featuring two #5s on the field for a punt return. I can’t find documentation of this though, so it remains only an unsubstantiated possibility courtesy of our own Thumpasaurus. In any event, it didn’t blunt Lovie’s newfound swagger:

Get it, Lovie.

On Having Only One Job, and Then, None Jobs

Indiana eliminated Ball State to start the season 1-0, which is great, but it wasn’t all smooth sailing for the Hoosiers, who by all accounts made it much more difficult than it needed to be (Source: Tom Allen).

First up for Allen’s fire, junior kicker Nathanael Snyder, a walk-on who last week earned a scholarship to great fanfare in the Indiana media. (You can watch the video of Snyder finding out about his scholarship here, which is pretty cool, even though it weirdly features the announcement being made by some sunglasses-wearing dudebro laying on a towel—I guess he plays for the Colts or something.)

Anyway, this was a less happy week for Snyder, and he started the game by sending the opening kickoff out of bounds. Unfortunately for him, he did it again later in the game, prompting the cameras to catch Tom Allen “inspiring” him on the sidelines with the phrase “You have exactly one job!” Snyder was replaced later in the game. Here’s hoping his nerves calm and he’s able to bounce back next week.

At least Snyder will be able to commiserate with defensive teammate Marcelino Ball, who single-handedly earned 45 of IU’s 65 penalty yards with an impressive array of sloppy decisions. Allen, after the game, promised vengeance: “I don’t get it,” Allen said. “It’s just stupid, selfish penalties, and that’s why I took him out and ripped his tail. We’ll have a nice little week with him for that, he’ll never do it again.”

So, uh, good luck to Snyder and Ball in practice this week.

Purdue, Committing the Ultimate Pur-don’t

If you haven’t already treated yourself to the improbable story of Purdue’s fourth quarter total breakdown of sanity and aptitude, then you should definitely fix that now, because oh boy, was this one a twist of the knife for the folks from West Lafayette.

Short story: Purdue committed five turnovers, one of them an interception in the waning minutes of the game that gave Nevada one more slim chance to win the game they’d already tied after coming back from a deficit of 31-14 late in the third quarter. No doubt this rally was irritating enough to Purdue fans, but what made it worse was Jeff Brohm’s decision to ice Nevada’s freshman kicker, Brandon Talton, on his first 56-yard-field goal attempt—which he missed. Having thus gotten that out of his system, Talton nailed his subsequent attempt, earning himself instant hero status on campus, as well as a scholarship, and sending Purdue home dejected and humiliated.

If you enjoy schadenfreude, our friends at Hammer & Rails have thoughtfully compiled the game in tweets, so you can watch the meltdown occur in everyone’s favorite social media shitshow.

Good luck on the rowing then, Boilermakers.

Minnesota Finds the Rowing Difficult With All Those Damn Rabbits in the Way

There’s not really any specific tarty incident for this one, but the very fact that Minnesota and its attending hype cloud very nearly lost to South Dakota State seems worthy of inclusion on this list. To be fair, SDSU is a terrible team to schedule, because they have a knack for making things harder than they should be on FBS teams, as Nebraska has found out on occasion. There’s no upside to scheduling them, except that their logo is kind of neat:

This rabbit is not here to be your friend.

One of your brilliant OTE “writers” apparently took the Jackrabbits more seriously than Peej did:

BigRedTwice: I don’t know much about SDSU except that their mascot is kind of fun, but I do know that they can be a trickier team than you expect them to be. Minnesota should win, but this is the kind of game fans don’t always feel great about afterwards.

Anyway, hopefully you all had a nicer Labor Day weekend than PJ Fleck:

One of these men is having a pretty nice Thursday.
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Just Tennessee Things

This isn’t from the Big Ten, but I don’t think you’ll mind too much, because there’s nothing NOT to love about Tennessee’s loss on Saturday night to Georgia State. GSU is in fact an FBS school, hailing from the Sun Belt conference, and after defeating Tennessee 38-31 over the weekend, they don’t appear as though they’ll let their SEC neighbors forget what happened:

Upsets are great (when they don’t happen to our team), and when they happen to an SEC team, they are the greatest. Especially when that SEC team created waves a few years ago by loudly and embarrassingly declaring itself too good for its new coach. Well, now they’re coached by.... (no one knows) and they just lost to Georgia Southern, so that is neat.

Hugh Freeze Revels in his Liberty to Make Bad Choices (Again)

This one was summed up well by my colleague, Creighton, so I’m going to let him tell you the particulars:

My favorite one of the week isn’t big ten related, but noted asshole/prostitute enthusiast Hugh Freeze insisted his hospital bed be wheeled into the stadium so he could coach the game like Grandpa Joe from Willy Wonka, and Liberty’s reward for letting this terrible idea happen was getting shut out at home

Anyway, Freeze is recovering from a serious staph infection, possibly made more dangerous by the effects of “moral turpitude,” but I don’t know, I’m not that kind of a doctor. The important thing though, is that Liberty lost 24-0 to Syracuse, so solid work there, Orange.

So, there we go! Back in the stupid saddle again. Feels great, doesn’t it?

Poll

What was the dumbest thing about this week in football?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    Duplicate Numbers on the Field
    (16 votes)
  • 2%
    The Threats of Tom Allen
    (11 votes)
  • 27%
    Just Everything Purdue Did
    (145 votes)
  • 3%
    Minnesota Failing to Handle the Jackrabbits As Expected
    (20 votes)
  • 41%
    Tennessee lol
    (217 votes)
  • 21%
    Hugh Freeze is a Dum-dum
    (113 votes)
522 votes total Vote Now