Tuesday, April 11, 2006

After exhausting "Coping with the Offseason Strategies" #147 (dating one of a conference rival's sorority girls, otherwise known as the "conquest strategy") and #263 (drinking heavily, otherwise known as the "drinking heavily strategy"), I decided to make use of strategy #392, The Revenge Game. I decided to up the ante, however, resulting in strategy #392B, the revenge season. That's right, even though we went 10-2 it wasn't good enough, so I bucked up, started a dynasty with my beloved Tide, and began what I hoped would be a thoroughly dominating performance for the ENTIRE season instead of just the first half.

- Thing started off poorly as I was informed prior to the first kick off that Ken Darby had cheated on an exam and had to be suspended for three games. Luckily Glen Coffee, Tim Castille, LeRon McClain, Matt Caddell (who would later become a Heisman candidate and finish second in the voting) and Tyrone Prothro (God bless him) were more than able to take up the slack as the Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders were served with a good old fashioned Alabama ass whipping. No retreating to the locker room with a 9-0 lead at the half this go round since it was all over after one quarter. Bama 52, MTSU 0.

-Next up, Southern Miss, a team that played toe to toe with the real life Bama for a half and even looked to pull the upset until Prothro (God bless him) made "The Catch" and sparked a Bama resurgence to pull away in the second. No need for a miracle catch this time, but just for fun I sent him streaking for the end zone with 3 seconds to go in the first half and tossed a 73 yard touchdown pass into triple coverage anyway. The injury bug that constantly plagues the real Tide decided to pay a visit to the virtual Bryant-Denny, resulting in the loss of CB Anthony Madison to a broken arm. Bama 38, Southern Miss 17.

-Next I took the Tide on the road to Columbia, SC to meet Spurrier's Gamecocks, and wound up more pissed off than if I'd lost. I had a shutout going 'til the 4th when the PS2 put together one of it's trademark unstoppable drives. My secondary went from ball hawking supermen to stumbling morons, staring at streaking wideouts and running backs as they ran swiftly by before turning and engaging in half-hearted pursuit. Just when I thought all was lost, Freddie Roach leaps into the air to intercept a sure touchdown pass on the goal line, and is immediately tackled. Shut out preserved, right? Wrong. The computer awards South Carolina a safety, leaving the final score Bama 35, South Carolina 2. Stinking PS2.

-The first trap game of the real season ended in a score of Bama 24, Arkansas 13. I was determined to avenge this injustice, and for the most part succeeded. Weirdly enough, the PS2 Arkansas turned into a full on option run team in the second half and gave me fits as they continually drove down the field, only to stall near the red zone as they converted to a pass only offense and I was able to push them back out of field goal range with sacks or force a fumble for the turnover. Strange game, but the final score is more reflective of what the real one should have been. Bama 50, Arkansas 3.

-Next, Florida. With a 31-3 blow out in the regular season, you wouldn't think there would be any revenging to do here. You'd be wrong. This one was for Prothro (God bless him), who had to be benched for a game for breaking unspecified team rules so there was no possibility of a broken leg this time around. It looked as if my grand expirement would die an early death as I foolishly prepared to defend the option against a PS2 that's more aware of Chris Leak's pocket passer tendencies than the real life Urban Meyer. In a reverse dejavu, Leak burned me for an 84 yard touchdown pass on their first play from scrimmage. I answered back with my own touchdown drive, riding the back of a fresh Ken Darby and then hitting Matt Caddell for a 20 yard touchdown pass on a playaction bootleg. On the next series I was again scorched by the passing of Leak and learned my lesson about multiple LB spies. My next few drives stalled as the brick handed tendencies of Bama receivers became readily apparent and the O-line crumbled before my very eyes. Gator defensive backs were in the backfield in a flash, turning any run play into a sure loss. Finally, near the end of the 2nd, Darby breaks off a 70+ yard touchdown run on an inside counter of all things to tie the game before the half. Channeling my inner Stallings, I settled in for a slugfest. At this point, the Gator offense was going nowhere against my adjusted pass coverage defense, and insult was added to injury when a pair of interception returns put the score at 28-14 in the 3rd. Darby, Castille, and McClain all contributed as I ate the clock on a 3 minute drive, ending in a field goal to make the final Bama 31 , UF 14.

-After that slugfest, a thorough revenging of the Ole Miss Rebels was in order. I was determined to shame the Wild Boys after their shaming of our offense in real life, and shamed they were. 48-0, and I finally get my second shut out.

-Dear Tennessee,
The PS2 polls had you ranked at #11, despite a 2-3 record. After I whipped you to the tune of 45-7, you didn't appear in the rankings again. Eat it.


-Now is when the season gets ugly. Bama is ranked #3 behind the other remaining unbeatens, USC and Iowa. Knowing that no matter how much of a beat down is administered to the rest of the schedule I'll still have to pray for the computer to cause a loss, I decide to take it easy on Utah State. The Aggies, on the other hand, had other plans; namely letting Ken Darby run for 468 yards on 7 carries, each one resulting in a touchdown, IN THE FIRST HALF. After that I sat Ken down and put Marc Guillon in thinking that if I hurled the ball downfield every down we'd go three and out the rest of the game. Boy was I wrong as he reapetedly hit Matt Caddell, who himself had a banner day with 3 touchdown catches of over 70 yards each. By the end of the game Prothro (God bless him) returned two punts for touchdowns, Peprah, Harper and Simeon Castille each returned interceptions for TDs, and Freddie Roach picked up a fumble at the 13 and ran it back for six more. Tim Castille, who's much slower in the game than real life, got in on the action with a 200+ yard rushing day, but was kept out of the end zone as I began kicking field goals as soon as I was in range to try and slow their bleeding. The final? 120-17. I almost felt bad for running up a score like that, but I figure if you let Marc Fucking Guillon burn you for big yardage then you got what was coming to you.

-After the massacre of Utah State, Sly Croom's Bullies were in no shape to slow the Tide juggernaut as I made sure there was no repeat of the "not a single offensive score" game. Bama 56, State 6.

- Now the real revenge gets going. While the LSU loss hurt and still weighs on me to this day (Peprah's hand on the ball in the end zone and Freddie Roach flying over Vincent instead of standing firm in the gap on 4th and 1 haunts me in my sleep), it was a hard fought game that Bama just wasn't able to put away. There was no humiliation, just the hurt of seeing a perfect season fall to pieces. The virtual game proved just about as hard fought as I kept LSU scoreless but managed only 14 points in the first half, thanks mostly to Caddell and Prothro making circus catches on deep routes while I struggled with the ground game. The second half saw more of the same as Darby performed well below his average, barely topping 100 yards rushing with only one touchdown. A deep strike to Caddell on a play action bootleg in the fourth put it away to make the final 28-0.

And now, the real revenge would begin in earnest, and there was some serious revenging to do as I headed to the planes with blood on my mind. First, I planned to sack Cox eleven times, but managed only five. Why only five? Cause that's all the little bitch could take as he left the game whining about a seperated shoulder early in the 2nd. Whoever #11 is took the other six meant for him. Second, I planned on a shut out, but was technically unable to meet that goal. Their only touchdown was scored on a total BS "the computer hates being shut out" play when a corner tipped a pass meant for DJ Hall half way across the field to a linebacker who took it 83 yards for a touchdown. Now, I'm not going to say that a linebacker returning an interception 83 yards is impossible. I'll readily acknowledge that a linebacker shouldn't have any problem shaking a tackle from Tyrone Prothro (God bless him), though we've all seen the video of him throwing a mean block at South Carolina, or Brodie Croyle. And I'll even admit that, while Ken Darby is a tough sumbitch, it's not outside the realm of possibility that a linebacker could bowl him over, too. But after running through (not around or juking them out of their cleats, THROUGH) Prothro, Croyle, and Darby, it stands to reason that he wouldn't still have the steam to bowl over an OFFENSIVE LINEMAN, Keith Brown, and finally stay on his feet AND IN BOUNDS after Zeke Knight careens into him at full speed while said linebacker is tight roping the chalk. So the computer screws me on that, but at least I can say the defense didn't give up a score all day. Bama 65, The Barn 7.

The rest of the season was gravy. The computer correctly had UGA as the SEC East champion, but they were no match for me as I led the Tide to a 34-7 victory in Atlanta. The computer also correctly put USC and Texas together, but this time in the Fiesta Bowl as the Trojans lost to the crosstown Bruins and Texas inexplicably falls to Baylor en route to a 9-3 regular season record. I'm set to play an undefeated Iowa (which I didn't even blink at after watching TAMU defeat Fresno State for the MNC during my Navy dynasty) in the Rose Bowl, and will keep you posted as to the results. For now, though, my thirst for revenge has been slaked by the blood of both the "Bengal" and "War" variety of tiger, and I rest. Roll Tide.


Blogger Nicole said...

When I asked you to post so we wouldn't have to look at the skin book anymore, I didn't mean you should have a full on nerd out.

5:58 PM  
Blogger TNIRISHFAN said...

Well at least we know why he hasn't posted in a while.

6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

excuse but wtf does drink heavily mean to you...did you have three bud lights...if it doesn't include 151 its not drinking!!

10:58 AM  
Blogger Todd Jones said...

i'm going to ignore that, since what most people consider heavy drinking is what you consider "a pre-dinner cocktail." drunken whore...

11:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dude, whatever, Mr. I can't feel my lips...

8:44 AM  

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