About a month ago, I proposed the idea of "A Clockwork Vandy" to the AoG writing staff. Like all ideas that may end in someone dying of alcohol poisoning, they gave it overwhelming support. The original idea was to do this over one solid weekend - waking up early on a Saturday and just slowly descending into the abyss as I watched the 2014 Vanderbilt Football season. At one point, I even contemplated writing it as if I were the protagonist of the book from which this series derives its name. While I know the AoG readers would have appreciated Nadsat, I know in my heart that I'd be phoning it in pretty much after the first
absinthe bottle game.
I did not record all the games last year, but I have a majority of them. I wisely never recorded the last few games after... well... you know.
Anyway, relive the 2014 season with me... or rather... be happy you don't have to. I'm writing this introduction before I even start watching and I'm starting with a delicious 1792 Ridgemont Reserve... because why start with beer when watching a Korean snuff film?
Temple, 2 and 8, Temple 32, ~13 min, 0-0
Oren Burks really missed an opportunity to pick the ball off on a 2nd down pass. It's a good thing he did because McGaster was burnt. A chilling portent of things to come.
Vanderbilt, ~8 min, 0-0
Ralph Webb decides to take the ball 11 yards after getting the ball back after both sides go 3 and out. The referees of course decide 11=9, possibly because they're drunk. Nonetheless who gets called for OPI? Vanderbilt. That's who. Oh goody, another 3 and out.
Temple, 4th and 21, Temple 25, ~6 min, 0-0
We had two great backfield tackles on the Temple RB who's name I don't care about
...and of course we immediately fumble it the first play we get the ball back. Damnit Kimbrow.
Temple Ball, 4th and 5, Vanderbilt 35, ~3 min, Temple 7 - VU 0
Temple wisely seeing the opportunity refuses the FG and tries for the quick slant for the 1st. Our secondary is generous, however, and decides that Temple should be rewarded for their courage with a touchdown.
Vanderbilt, 4th and 13, Vanderbilt 45, ~1 min, Temple 7 - VU 0
Hey cool this Vanderbilt offense is starting to come back to me - ignore our strengths and focus on our weaknesses.
End of 1st, Temple 7 - VU 0:
The sideline reporter reminded me that we had to use hand signals to make the calls. Haven't the deaf suffered enough? They have to see this display of vulgarity that is our offense?
How could I have forgotton about this whole debacle regarding the "Anchor Down" slogan that kicked off the second quarter. Say what you want about the jerseys but we had approval.
Temple, 4th and 1, Temple 22, ~14 minutes, Temple 7 - VU 0
Defense may win championships, but games are won on special teams. I guess with blocking on the back on PRs that puts us somewhere between Prof. Frink and Steve Urkel for winning.
Vanderbilt, 1st and 10, Vanderbilt 34, ~14 minutes, Temple 7 - VU 0
I interrupt this descent into the abyss to be momentarily happy about a beautiful 20 yard throw and catch to Stanford defect Dudchock.
Vanderbilt, 3rd and 8, Temple 45, ~12 minutes, Temple 7 - VU 0
....that lasted what, 2 minutes? A quick slant would have gotten us out of that 7 yard sack but for whatever reason we don't want to run any short routes.
It's typical it happens to Vanderbilt. It's also stupid that the SEC head of officials didn't specify that "Anchor Down" better just be a place holder for the name and not what they were going to put on the damned jerseys. Temple head coach who cares what his name is has a right to be flabbergasted at this affair.
Temple, 4th and 21, Temple 13, 10 min, Tied @ 7
Ahahahahahaha I don't care if it's off ST. A punt screw up for a touchdown is always good. Our flankers that came in to block did a great job getting around the blocks to get to the ball. I can't decide whether the punter trying to pick it up in the end zone is just lack or respect or panic. Probably both.
Did you know that whatever ESPN intern that was covering this game was similarly drunk and after that punt for a TD, mixed up our two teams?
Temple, 2nd and 7, Temple 38, ~9 min, Tied @ 7
Beautiful pass off another slant route for what should have been about 9 yards. We're getting KILLED on quick slants. "Tre Tarpley" (psst, it's Arnold Tarpley ESPN but I forgive you), a true freshman knocked it out. Sealand
declares his own soverign country, recovers.
Vanderbilt, 2nd and 8, Temple 48, ~9 min, Tied @ 7
I was almost too busy reading up on the recent history of the Principality of Sealand to notice that the devil Stephen Rivers came into the game. Almost. ESPN is squawking wrong opinions about how ~you can't go back~ to Robinette now. Apparently, ESPN commentators are also PhDs in psychology.
Temple, 1st and 10, Temple 15, ~9 min, Tied @ 7
The first temple run is an outside jaunt for 10 yards. Stephen Rivers in the game makes everyone worse, even the defense
Since Roy was still a British citizen a summons was issued under the fire arms act and on the 25th of November 1968. Roy and Michael were in the dock of the Crown court of Chelmsford assizes in Essex. There was much argument and laws going back to the 17th century were called upon. During his summing up the judge said "This is a swash buckling incident perhaps more akin to the time of "Sir Francis Drake" but it is my judgment is that the UK courts have no jurisdiction." This was Sealand’s first de facto recognition.
Temple, 4th and 8, Vanderbilt 35, ~3 min, Tied @ 7
Temple respects us about as much as I respect Paul Shore. A WHOLE BUNCH BUUUUUUUUUUUDDDDDYYY
Temple, 2nd and 4, Vandy 18, ~2 min, Temple 14 - VU 7
Another no contest touchdown because our DC is apparently just using the "ask Madden" feature for selecting our defense. I can't see much of another reason for picking a 1-5-5 in this situation.
Vanderbilt, 1st and 10, Temple 29, ~1 min, Temple 14 - VU 7
Rivers with two terrible throws to Rayford but because Rayford can catch, he gives Rivers 26 yards on two consecutive first downs. He follows with a wayyyy over the head throw to Scheu he similarly somehow pulls down. I want to say something good about Rivers but every time I think about it I just think about chest pass and I want to drown a kitten.
Vanderbilt, 2nd and 10, Temple 29, 50 seconds, Temple 21 - VU 7
...or you know something like this happens.
Vanderbilt, Kickoff, 40 seconds, Temple 21 - VU 7
The PA is playing something that sounds like it's off the soundtrack to Ridge Racer. It's somewhat soothing, but not quite like a cool island song.
Dear God, how am I going to watch 10 games when I can't even see myself getting through this ONE? Ok. The fumble was bull. Rivers was down. There. I said something positive - he didn't mess it up. Honestly, we're making lots of mistakes but as of now, we're not really worse than Temple. We're beating ourselves. A large part of it is on Mason, but part of this is the "same old Vandy" demons. That's scary considering many of these guys never knew that era.
Speaking of, dear God I forgot how shell shocked Mason looked at the halftime interview. I know the face, I've made it several times before. Like this fun little game when I was a Sophomore where I enjoyed the shortest OT in history.
Vanderbilt, 2nd and 10, Temple 25, ~13 min, Temple 21 - VU 7
You know, just when I wanted to say we looked like we settled down out of the half, Rivers throws another terrible pass to someone he shouldn't have. As soon as I finish writing the ball is fumbled on the snap. I blame Rivers because it's almost certainly his fault.
Temple, 4th and 11, Temple 21, ~10 minutes, Temple 21 - VU 7
We do a great job to set up a quick nothing drive and of course fumble the damned punt. There's no denying that this is a comedy of errors at this point. I literally wrote a bad Python joke to describe it, but realized how stupid and pointless it would be to publish a joke one person would get.
Temple, 4th and Goal, Vandy 1, ~8 min, Temple 24 - VU 7
Temple takes mercy on a very short 4th and goal, and decides to take a FG. Lots of people would say "take the points", but I hate this kind of mercy. Bring your best or don't play.
The ESPN talking heads have informed me that 17 points are off TOs. Sounds right.
Vanderbilt, 1st and 10, Vandy 21, ~8 min, Temple 24 - VU 7
It would literally be better to watch reruns of Sister-Sister than continue this. Johnny Mac is brought in, and in his first pass, throws a pick.
Screw it, I'm drunk, and I'm suffering. You're going to suffer with me, I found the playbook for this game y'all.
Temple, 1st and Goal, Vandy 3, ~6 min, Temple 31 - VU 7
There's another effin quarter of this shit? I'm going to die of alcohol poisoning I'm not even through game 1. A run completely uncontested by PJ Walker. 31-7 at this point. I'm more interested in the texts from infrequent AoG commentator "DoreMD" debating me on the proper viewing order of Star Wars at this point.
Vanderbilt, 1st and 10, Vandy 21, ~6 min, Temple 31 - VU 7
McCray's second snap is a 10 yard QB run. I don't understand how ESPN commentators, who are largely former ball players, can't see a clear designed run play when they see it.
Vanderbilt, 3rd and 8, Vandy 36, ~4 min, Temple 31 - VU 7
McCrary throws another pick. I just have nothing to say anymore. I just don't. I'm drinking a lot. Not quite as much as that night we beat Arkansas at Fayetteville and I was drinking 151 straight from the bottle, but close. By the way that was the closest I ever got to BoJo, meeting the team after the game, and I think I scared him.
Temple, 4th and 6, Vandy 10, ~2 min, Temple 34 - VU 7
Temple is going to kick a chip in FG and whatever. This game was salvageable even at the half but we decided to double down on "crap".
My .mp4 file says there's only 4 minutes left of playback. I suspect I had a similar state of "eff this" and just stopped recording....
Vanderbilt Kickoff, ~2 min
6th effing turnover tonight. Let's just give effin Temple as many points as possible TEMPLE. My het is wetter than the rain forest. Let's check the Het-o-Meter
Oh thank God, my suffering is over.
Apparently I did turn this shit off after the 3rd. Thank God, because I'm going to now turn on the Ole Miss game and slip into a coma and die...
Ed: I didn't make it. I passed out. I can't binge drink like I used to.