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Fall’s Tarts, Week Three: No Concession Speeches, But Plenty of Losers

A Week Where Pennsylvania Performed Several Civic Duties

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 07 Minnesota at Illinois Photo by James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Hey all! Sorry for slacking off with the Tarts last week. I escaped into a small cabin with no wi-fi for a couple of days so I didn’t have to deal with watching the election. I cannot tell you how highly I recommend this course of action, and I think I am a veritable genius for doing this. It didn’t hurt that it was also 70+ degrees and crystal clear, the kind of autumn days one dreams of.

This week, I’m annoyingly back on the grid, which means I’m here to fill you in on all the silliness, stupidity, and weird things that happened this week. Spoiler alert: none of them were remotely close to the majesty that was The Affair at Four Seasons Total Landscaping. I still can’t believe that total suckfest 2020 had that comedic gem up its sleeve.

This was actually nominated for a Tart, believe it or not, but of course it isn’t. If Benjamin Franklin found proof of a benevolent god in the existence of beer, I think that perhaps God’s play for a more cynical 21st century audience might just be blessing us with this gem at such a time as this. Rudy Giuliani in the parking lot of Four Seasons Total Landscaping is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Anyway. On to football. If we must.

In Which Illinois Challenges Itself in New Ways

As you may or may not know, this season is not going particularly well for the Fighting Illini. This did not change last Saturday, most notably as the Illinois QB, who might be named Coran Taylor, but maybe not, “threw backwards” for about 15 yards, and the ensuing scramble for the ball left the Illini near mid-field for 4th & goal.

This, as they’ve been known to say in Champaign, is “not ideal.”

Also not ideal was Lovie Smith’s decision to decline a pass interference penalty in order to take... the 3rd and 4? Instead of a 1st and 10?

Thump has opinions about this. Media is invited to his press conference in some Arby’s parking lot where he will air a full list of his grievances.

In Which Metaphors Cover 5,700 Square Feet

In another contribution to the nation this week from the Keystone State, Penn State lost another football game—this time to Mighty Maryland. You know, the Maryland that got blasted by 40 points by Northwestern just a few weeks ago? Yeah, them.

In fact, Penn State didn’t just lose, they got whalloped, losing 35-19. Losing by 26 points when you were favored by 27 is, how do you say, not great. After starting the season ranked #8, PSU is now 0-3.

If you like your metaphors large and brightly illuminated, Penn State’s AV team has got you covered:

Luckily, they face Nebraska next, which isn’t quite Illinois-level “Safe Mode” but may still be able to help get the Lions back up and running.

In Which a Georgia Player is Surprised He Hit the Man He Directly Aimed At

This one isn’t in the Big Ten of course, but it still gave me a chuckle, so here you go:

In Which College Football Does NOT Follow Directed Health Measures

It’s easy to forget, I suppose, as we all paid WAY more attention to Georgia this week than anyone has since our very own William T. Sherman and a president mounted a legal defense in the shadows of a porn shop and a crematorium, that we are still in a global pandemic that is actually WORSENING by a LOT in the US at the current moment. We’re now seeing more than 1,000 deaths across the country every DAY as a matter of course.

Unfortunately, even in the already-risky environment of college football game days, we’ve seen a number of actions taken by players and coaches that do not follow Directed Health Measures, to put it mildly.

Of course, we have the repeated failures of many Big Ten coaches to wear their mask during the games. I watched Nebraska’s game with my mom, and she admonished “Put your mask back on, Scott!,” surprisingly to no real effect. (A+ momming though.) Frost is a major offender in this category, but Fitz had a number of failures of his own, and Day is quite terrible too.

The big story in CFB for the past couple weeks from a Covid perspective, is, of course, that TREVOR LAWRENCE HAS COVID AND WILL NOT BE PLAYING FOR TWO WEEKS DID YOU GUYS KNOW THIS? Of course you knew it if you’ve turned on a TV in the past two weeks, because ESPN is apparently legally obligated to repeat this knowledge nugget at least once every three minutes. I’m pretty sure Rudy mentioned it in his speech at the Four Seasons.

Wait, who is this?

That’s right. Trevor Lawrence, too valuable for quarantine, on the sideline after testing positive, maskless.

People exercise their freedoms so wisely, you guys.

But wait! There’s more!

This one actually comes from last week, when Florida and Missouri’s first half devolved into a massive mid-field brawl, complete with punches and everything:

My favorite part of this video is the announcer chuckling and pulling that “Dadgum these youngsters getting a little high spirited and boys will be boys, won’t they sure be!” BS before the gradual realization that this is an honest-to-god brawl that they can’t actually chuckle away. My other favorite part of this is how it illustrates how Dr. Anthony Fauci has once again completely let down the American public by not explicitly warning the populace NOT to gather in groups of over one hundred to spit on each other and yell and fight unless you are wearing a proper mask. I mean, how were they to know?*

*Please recognize this is a joke. Dr. Fauci is a national treasure and my celebrity crush of 2020. Long may he reign.

But the winner this week might be the Notre Dame student section. These teams allowed some fans to be in the stadium (dumb) and then actually assumed they’d remain seated where they were supposed to (dumber). When Notre Dame upset Clemson, who WAS MISSING TREVOR LAWRENCE FOR COVID EVEN THOUGH HE WAS RIGHT THERE ON THE SIDELINE WITHOUT HIS MASK AND THIS MEANS THIS LOSS DIDN’T REALLY COUNT, the Notre Dame fans stormed the field (dumbest).

In fairness, many of them were in fact wearing masks. On the other hand, that is a lot of close contact for a sustained period of time, which is... not great. Notre Dame is now requiring all of its students to undergo a Covid test. Hopefully, enough were masked that it doesn’t turn into a major spreader event.

That does it for this week! In all seriousness, stay safe out there, folks. I know everyone is sick of this stupid virus, but don’t be the reason that someone loses a loved one over the holidays.


Tart of the Week?

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Illinois Has World’s Longest 4th and Goal
    (64 votes)
  • 15%
    Penn State Out-Metaphors Moby Dick
    (54 votes)
  • 2%
    Georgia Player Throws the Ball at Defenseless Man
    (9 votes)
  • 15%
    Various and Sundry Covid Failures
    (55 votes)
  • 47%
    I mean, none of these teams held a press conference in a landscaper’s parking lot while representing the POTUS
    (163 votes)
345 votes total Vote Now