Headlines from the 2017 College Football Season


There’s no escaping headlines in 2017. I wake up every morning petrified of reading the latest headline alert pushed through my smartphone notifications.

But the headlines we are talking here at The Open Man are different. These are headlines for what might happen during the 2017 college football season:

Notre Dame probably won’t go 4-8, but definitely won’t go 12-0

Notre Dame has Wake Forest, Boston College and Miami (OH) on the schedule: three likely wins for the Fighting Irish. That means finishing just 2-7 the rest of the way to avoid another year of 4-8 jokes. But hey, I don’t think they were supposed to go 4-8 last season. Who had the Irish losing to Duke, NC State AND Navy?

I do shudder to think what would happen if they lost to Wake Forest this season.

South Carolina wins a cluster#*@% SEC East

If you’re looking for an interesting turnaround story, you can always look towards that “other” South Carolina team.

And this is not to say that South Carolina is going to win 10 games this season. It’s not! You don’t need to win 10 games to win the SEC East, however. And that also doesn’t mean they’re going to beat Alabama or whomever else the SEC West representative is in the conference title game.

It’s going to be a mess in the SEC East, even more than last year.

That said, I mostly just want to see this happen because of Will Muschamp. Does this make me crazy? I think not. However, you are entitled to your opinions.

Big 12 mystified as it’s once again left out of the playoff

If you got to this point, it means you’ve read and absorbed my previous headline, which makes me question what is wrong with you.

Yes, it’s possible that even with a conference championship game, the Big 12 could get left out of the College Football playoff again.

Oklahoma losing again to Ohio State would definitely hurt the Sooners’ chances, especially if the conference beats up on each other during round-robin play.

The Sooners could run through the Big 12 with relative ease. However, a win over the Buckeyes in Columbus helps their cause. If they lose there…I don’t know that they can rely on a 12-1 or 11-2 schedule to get them in.

Jon Gruden is a candidate for a lot of college football jobs

This isn’t really much of a prediction; it’s more of a college football standard.

Yes, at some point, Gruden will get a mention for a college football coaching gig during the season. It all depends on who is on the hot seat at that point.

Tennessee is probably the popular pick, based on what Gruden has said in the past.

He’ll obviously be a popular rumored name in the NFL ranks once that coaching carousel starts spinning, but it’s more fun to see random reports and wild (stupid because of the source material) speculations.

So let’s go ahead and cover all the bases and just throw Gruden’s name in with these certain jobs, based on how they’re situated on the Coaches Hot Seat website:

Gruden to Notre Dame, Gruden to Ole Miss, Gruden to UCLA, Gruden to Texas Tech, Gruden to Boston College, Gruden to Arizona State, Gruden to UMass, and my personal favorite is Gruden to Kansas.

Pac-12 stuns the world by not having any officiating snafus

If you dream it, you can achieve it: Yes, even you Pac-12!

Truth be told, we don’t necessarily know that the Pac-12 referees are going to be better. We just think the other Power 5 conferences will catch up and bring their own cases of bad officiating to the party, possibly worse than the Pac-12.

You can argue that the Pac-12 has set the bar high for officiating errors, even when the conference was known as the Pac-10. So what if its history can be tracked through a Reddit post. These are all just alternative facts anyway!

We here at The Open Man believe Pac-12 refs will be great; maybe the best in college football.

Coach [probably named Jim Mora] to take on NFL head coaching job

It happens! One college football coach opts to test the waters and take on a high paying gig in the National Football League. Usually the rumors circulated focus on the high-tier coaches like Saban, Harbaugh and Meyer.

The truth is, the NFL could go for any head coach. The Falcons went for Bobby Petrino, after all. They could go for Randy Edsall, if they wanted. (I’m not saying the NFL will hire Edsall. It’s just an example. Please don’t panic!)

I’m not saying it’s gonna be Jim Mora. But there are probably going to be some very-Jim Mora openings by December. And nothing would be funnier than Detroit Lions Head Coach Jim Mora…unless we’re talking about Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Bret Bielema, which would be borderline erotic.

San Diego State earns NY6 Bowl Berth

Time to take a turn back towards a little more realism.

We think the Aztecs are a very good candidate for the Group of 5 berth in this year’s New Year’s Six bowl games.

They have a decent non-conference schedule, playing Arizona State and Stanford in consecutive weeks. They won the Mountain West the last two seasons and they have a solid running attack, per Rocky Long’s M.O.

If they beat both Arizona State and Stanford, those are quality wins that can’t be ignored.

Scheduling backfires for Penn State with CFP committee

Playing Michigan and Ohio State is unavoidable for those in the Big Ten East Division. For the Penn State Nittany Lions, they get those teams in back-to-back weeks during the month of October.

There’s no bigger home game on the schedule for Penn State this season (sorry Pitt) than the one Oct. 21 against Michigan. It’s probably going to be a prime-time game, and it could be a potential Top 10 battle.

This is the kind of game that can bring euphoric highs to a program via a big attention-getting home victory, much like last season’s upset of Ohio State in State College.

Too bad they have to go to Columbus the very next week and play a revenge-minded Buckeyes. Might not end well for the Nittany Lions or their playoff chances.

[Team here] wins National Championship

There might have been doubts along the road, but in the end this was the team that you all knew would win the national championship.

They might have faced a stumbling block or two along the way, including late in the season against their heated rival.

However, when push came to shove, this team stepped up during key moments of the season, won the close games that needed to be won, and impressed the committee who placed them in the College Football Playoff.

They pulled through to get the win. And in a way, the national title win is an exclamation point on an amazing season.

Alternative [That team you don’t like] wins National Championship

Finally, the season is over! Aren’t you glad that it finally ended. Why waste anymore time celebrating the team you hoped wouldn’t win, but still did.

They powered through their stumbling blocks that you hoped would’ve hurt their chances. The committee looked through the issues with the team that you seem to hold so tightly in your heart.

It was silly of you to think they’d stumble in the semifinals. They made it look easy, at times. That National Title win just proves how frustrated you were with the 2017 college football season. Hopefully next year gets here soon!

If that wasn’t enough headline cravings for you, here are a few others in bullet point form:

  • Kirk Ferentz receives a contract extension that lasts through 2030
  • Bob Stoops keeps getting linked to Chicago Bears job
  • Fox Sports patents augmented reality technology that beams Skip Bayless and Colin Cowherd giving terrible opinions directly to your frontal lobe
  • College Gameday will continue to avoid Iowa State
  • Cincinnati continues to “ask” the Big 12 about an invite
  • Big 12 continues denying the existence of Cincinnati
  • Former Wake Forest players turned radio analysts continue new tradition of leaking playbook to opposing teams
  • Everyone will question how [Power 5 mid-tier team] is so high in the first CFP rankings.