Hello again friends! After a two-year hiatus from the critically un-acclaimed and quite possibly ignored "What the P-S Won't Tell You About" series of football previews, I'm dipping my toe back into the water to offer you all another season of nonsensical looks at our upcoming football opponents. The format has changed, and we'll mix in some regular features with special content unique to the opponent. But the intention to give you a laugh here and there remains the same. I hope you enjoy, and Go Orange!
Opponent: Central Connecticut State Blue Devils
Location: New Britain, Conn.
CCSU: They Shall Wear No Crowns and Win No Glory
Who attends Central Connecticut State University?
The last in a long line of children from a noble family.
Anyone, that is, who has the stones to defend the realm from a state overrun by wildlings, freaks and white walkers. You know... UConn fans!
Indeed, to attend CCSU is to accept a lifetime of selfless sacrifice. To live and die among an anonymous brotherhood with scant hope of sporting glory, while trying in vain to hold back the relentless onslaught of obnoxious Husky fans who have New Britain completely and hopelessly surrounded.
So while we hope for annihilation on the football field this weekend, please spare a thought for our opponent. And appreciate their vow to deal with those we wouldn't want to. For in Connecticut, night gathers...
...and now their watch begins.
Introducing: Coach's Film Study
It's well known that Coach Dino Babers loves two things: playing football fast, and movies! In this new first-of-its-kind feature, Coach takes a moment from the gridiron to break down the Xs and Os of the Silver Screen.
Today's Film: "The Family Stone"
Okay, "The Family Stone" is basically another installment in a series of romantic comedies ("The Father of the Bride", "Something's Gotta Give", etc.) where the plot is quite simply to let Diane Keaton and a bunch of good-looking white people hang out in some huge house that looks like a Crate and Barrel showroom.
Now don't get me wrong. Keaton's a great actress, and no one does a "self-liberating freak-out while wearing a white turtleneck" better than her. But the plot is plodding (#SlowIsTheNewBOOORING), the characters one-dimensional, and the setting way too idyllic... just like Connecticut!
Verdict: If you like to play your movies safe, love the Hallmark Channel, or enjoy the offensive stylings of Steve Addazio and BC football, "The Family Stone" may be right up your alley. But if you liked to "play it safe", you wouldn't be a Syracuse football fan now, would you?!?
I didn't think so.
Introducing: The #FakeNunes Statistical Index (#FNSI)!
Long gone are the days when credible fake football previews could survive on some clever photoshopped graphics, a joke here and there, and a face palm meter. Today's fake news consumers need information to be boiled down into cool and super impressive-looking charts with advanced metrics! Sure, no one save a few Stanford grad students even knows what the calculations mean, but that won't stop a Clemson fan from getting worked up in a Mike Gundy-esque lather when comparing Deshaun Watson and Lamar Jackson's DVOA and DYAR during the 2016 season!
Well, TNIAAM is with the times, so we introduce you to our very own proprietary mock-statistical model to measure the TRUE strength of Syracuse University's schedule- the #FakeNunes Statistical Index (#FNSI). Each week, the #FNSI will assess the strength of an opponent across multiple key variables (on a scale of 0-30) using absolutely none of the most complex sports analytics metrics available. The Components of the #FSNI are as follows (clockwise from top):
F&B: (Food and Beverage). The relative strength of an opponents campus or hometown's restaurant and/or beverage scene.
Tailgate Efficiency: The measure of how good a school is at executing college football's most important play: the pre-game tailgate!
Adj. Uniform Coolness: It was once said by the great Fernando Lamas that "it is better to look good than to feel good." So true! You think Alabama is so good just because their entire team is made up of five-star NFL-ready recruits? No way. The uniform alone gave them at least two of their most recent National Championships. I defy you to prove me wrong!
4th String F.I.: (4th String Familiarity Index). If your fan base is so rabid, that they pour over articles regarding the incoming Freshman that will be competing for a starting spot in two years, you are going to have a high 4SFI. Florida State? High 4SFI. CCSU??? Not so much.
Hot Seat: The extent to which a loss in this game will put the head coach on the Hot Seat.
FACEPALM: A TNIAAM classic. What will a loss do to the mood of the fan base? The higher the rating, the more plentiful the face palms!
Grandpa Edgar: Unique to TNIAAM, the Grandpa Edgar is a proprietary metric based on what my beloved Grandpa Edgar would think about the teams playing in this game compared to the old-school teams of the 60s and 70s. The tough foreman of a Western Nebraska meat packing plant and die-hard Cornhusker fan, it takes a lot to impress this old-school man among men. Be prepared to be criticized, and while you are at it, GET OFF HIS LAWN!
Swift/Perry Index: Measures the "Bad Blood" between the programs on and/or off the field.
Iso #DISRESPEKT: The quantified level of irrational disrespect felt by a fan base for the slightest slight against their program. Measured using the "Clemson scale" developed by MIT in the early 90s.
Narcissism+: The cumulative belief among a team's fan base that everything in life is completely and totally about them. I'M LOOKING AT YOU, OHIO STATE!
EDSBS IJ Factor: (Every Day Should Be Saturday Inside Joke Factor). Measures the perceived popularity of a program based on the percentage chance that a writer at EDSBS will create a meme or other popular joke about said program that EVERYONE loves, yet in reality only about 15% of readers that are not die-hard fans of that school have any clue whatsoever what it actually means.
East Coast Bias +/-: A pseudo-classic measure of how much airtime a program's victory will get on ESPN relative to last month's Yankees/Red Sox series.
Tradition/Culture Index: The measure of how a school's football culture and traditions compare to their peers.
In subsequent #FakeNunes previews, we'll use the space above to expand upon the opponent's (and Syracuse's) scores, while comparing the two to predict a winner. So without further adieu, I present to you this week's #FNSI. Enjoy!
This game was never meant to be a major challenge for the Orange, and the #FNSI agrees. Great dangers lie ahead. But for one week at least we'll take our advantage across the board and post a comfortable victory against an outmatched foe.
Syracuse 41, CCSU 13