I’ve maintained that the best thing about football-fandom is the social part. I love football schemes and strategies because I’m a nerd and those wonky details fascinating me. I like hanging out with friends and family a bit more. The coolest thing about Cooler Chronicles (neé Coker) has been you people.
So while this UTSA season has exceeded expectations yet again (Looking at you Dave Campbell), I haven’t had the pleasure of taking in a game in person. Every weekend this month I’ve been in a different city attending to various obligations.
‘Tis why I’m looking forward to so much fellowship (read: beer-drinking) with the peeps this Saturday. I’ll be setting up a modest little tailgate with Friend Trae in Lot B, hanging with some UTSA peeps. Stop by and say hello. There’s a beer in it for ya.
Stats are funny. They are descriptive and can be used to do some predicting but they can whisper in your ear and tell you exactly what you want to hear. You need context. You need to watch the games.
I haven’t watched many Houston games post-Briles/Sumlin/Kliff/Keenum. I do have a friend that is an alumnus that keeps me updated. They are a shell of the freight train of a few years ago. UTSA, on the other hand, is a spry team that led by a core group of guys that have played and practiced together a lot. They all still have that chip on their shoulder and the kind of pride that can only come from a group of guys that have built something from scratch. There is something to be said for being involved in a program from the very beginning than taking over something that has been going for a while.
Levine is not really impressing in his reign. The Coogs faithful are pining for the days when the had two back-to-back Big Conference Poachable Hires. Larry Coker, by contrast, is in his Frank Solich stage. No one will poach him away and UTSA is better for it. The matchup is one of history and talent coached poorly(?) and one of overlooked talent, and a well-coached team.
The difference between the two based on that set of characteristics may be so small that playing at home may make the difference. Sure, Houston won’t be fazed by playing in the Dome, but UTSA played so well against OSU and I think that continues. The crowd will be boisterous, partly because U of H travels so well, and having a sea of red shouting “Whose House? Coogs House!” in your home will get the San Antonians a bit angry. There is history between the two cities. There is a relatively new Spurs-Mavs rivalry that has caused a little SA-DFW beef. That’s new though. Before that, there was the Spurs-Rockets rivalry. I still remember seeing my favorite basketball player get embarrassed in 1994. I still remember Rob Horry cashing a three after missing a ton all game to win game six. I’ll be damned if I don’t have to be reminded of it every time I have something to say about the Rockets. There won’t be any way to really erase that memory, but maybe tomorrow UTSA can get over on Hakeem The Dream’ and Phi Slamma Jamma’s alma mater — the University of Houston.
Surprisingly, this is the year where that can happen. With a rebuilding Cougar squad making its way into the Bird Dome, and a fully leveled up Eric Soza leading a team with the right mix of experience and talent this is ripe for an ‘upset’. Houston is a 2.5-3 point favorite, depending on who are what you read.
The stakes are so much higher for Houston than for UTSA, though. A loss against that little team in SA? They’ve only been around for three years! Cougar King, resident CUSA troll and UNT/U of H alum, will maybe finally turn off his computer because he won’t have anything to say aside from listing Alumni from U of H.*
Gimme UTSA by 4 points.
*of course he won’t stop. Trolls don’t stop. DON’T FEED THE TROLLS.
My time for non-essential activities has been scarce. Ya’ll give Jared a round of applause for stepping up and hosting the podcast and booking guests and things. Also, give Shafer a good bye hand shake. He has transferred on account of playing time concerns. Much success to his future pumpkin beer-related endeavors.
I know some of you listen to both Deranged Pengwin and Cooler Chronicles. If you want to find the latest episodes all in one place head over to JosephineStreetPodcasts.com. Whereas I have hopes that Dapper Dialogue will return, I’m wouldn’t bet on it. Maybe you have a show you want to pitch? Email me here and we’ll talk about it.
Editor extraordinaire, UTSA grad student. Twitter