Best Case/Worst Case
So a week from today things start to get ramped up. Paternoville will be in full force, or atleast as forceful as it usually is in the OOC. The campers will be parked outside the stadium getting the grills ready and the town will be as busy as ever. With only a few days to go lets take a look at the Best Case/Worst Case for each of the games. It is a bit like beating a dead horse, but hey, pretty soon there will be games to actually talk about so the wait is almost over.
Best Case: Evan Royster starts the season off on the right foot and rushes for 200 yards. Clark and the new unit of wideouts click well enough for Brett Bracket to show that he’ll be the go to guy. The first team stays out for the 3rd quarter and Kevin Newsome gets a good amount of time to play and Sean Lee show everybody he is gonna be a force to reckon with.
Worst Case:Chris Jacquemain who passed for 2,700 yards last season exposes a sadly unproven secondary and passes for 150 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Lions still win the game but many people leave Beaver Stadium wondering if the defense will get it together in time for the big dogs.
Best Case: The offense gets more time to gell and things click better and better. Sure it isn’t like the Orange are putting up a big fight, but playing time is really important for the young offense.
Worst Case:Greg Paulus is randomly good at football and makes the first quarter interesting. After that he finds out in many ways that football is a contact sport. Unless somebody gets hurt, nothing really bad should happen in this game.
Best Case:The wrinkles that the secondary and wideouts might be having look much better, the Lions cruise to another win and things are looking up for the Iowa game.
Worst Case: Temple, a team that is supposed to be on the upswing starts to play like they can. Even though the Lions get the W it looks like things need to come together quickly for the Big Ten title to be defended.
Best Case:Revenge is sweet, the Hawkeyes don’t look the same without Mr Greene and the Lions send them packing early to the only night-time crowd of the season. Clark looks like and All-American and the running game looks unstoppable. The defense plays well and continues to find itself before the trip to face Illinois.
Worst Case: Iowa gets a huge win against Arizona in one of the more interesting OOC Big Ten games this year. Ricky Stanzi finds his targets and makes the NittanyLions scramble for answers. The second half gives the Lions more than they really want to handle but they come out on top on a 30 yard rush by Royster. Even though the Lions win, they still have questions that need to be answered. Beating the weaker OOC doesn’t equal good Big Ten play.
Best Case: Juice just can’t find his rhythm and keeps playing below his potential. Bennestill has a good game but it becomes a 2 on 11 game. Illinois can’t find play makers on the defensive side of the ball and the Lions run all over them Royster and Co go for 150 yards. Clark keeps up the passing and Brett Bracket has a 100 yard game.
Worst Case: Illinois explodes. After a few years of under performing Juice Williams plays like he can. The Lions can’t stop the pass and lose by 14. They make a late comeback in the 4th quarter but the defense can’t contain the pass. Even though the Lions fall to 4-1 there are 7 games left all games that the Lions should be favored. Hope is not lost in the Valley, but the boat is rocked.
Best Case: The Lions are 5-0 and get a chance to rest their legs. Everybody cruises in this game and the starters are out by halftime. The second team gets valuable playing time and everybody is happy.
Worst Case:The Lions comeback feeling letdown after losing a close game. They get the W but there is a worried air about the stadium, Homecoming awaits next week where a win against Minnesota would bring the faithful back to the wagons.
Best Case: Homecoming treats the Lions well and they trample the Gophers on the field and through the air. The defense gains back some of it’s swagger and shuts down Eric Decker. Royster goes nuts and is finally turning heads across the nation.
Worst Case:Eric Decker has another huge game on his way to another 1,000 yard receiving year and the Lions are looking like maybe 2nd place isn’t so bad. Even still the Lions pull out the win by a last second field goal. Up next is the Big House.
Best Case:For some reason Michigan is using three quarterbacks this year. Rich Rod is on the hot seat and this game is no different. Royster has another big game and is closing in on the All-Time rushing record. Clark gets the victory in the Big House and the Lions are rolling.
Worst Case: The Lions can’t win the Big House, and this is year isn’t any different. Rich Rod has a team that he can finally build with and the Big Ten is about to feel the wrath of a WV offense. The Lions lose in a game a lot like Iowa last year and Clark gets a concussion. Could be a long way down from here.
Best Case: Northwestern doesn’t build on last years success and they hold up the bottom of the Big Ten with pride (along with Indiana). For the first time in a while, Clark doesn’t play in the second half of the game andthe second team cruises along quite nicely.
Worst Case: Northwestern gives the Lions fits as usual and pulls out a last second win. Think 2005 but without the comeback.
Best Case:Ohio State is overrated, we all know it, andthey find out. They put in a good fight but there is no stopping a Penn State team that is now in the driver seat for the Big Ten title repeat. The second half opens up and the Lions give Pryor a greeting to a place that was “Too country” for him.
Worst Case:Pryor really is the offensive player of the year, he has learned how to throw, OSU did in fact reload, and they know it. Penn State hangs on but the Buckeyes win after Pryor drives the team down the field to end the game. Suddenly the Outback Bowl is looking better and better.
Best Case:The Lions are coming off a huge win against Ohio State, but this time the next game isn’t on the road. The Lions cruise to another victory and are on a 7 game win streak. Royster keeps up his record season while hitting the 200 yard mark again for the 3rd time. The defensive woes are forgotten and Penn State is looking like Big Ten Champs again.
Worst Case:Clark is banged up from a tough OSU loss and the Newsome sees his first start. They pull out the W but the Lions are looking like a team who is just tired. Senior night is always emotional and Sean Lee goes out on a victory, but wishes he could stay for another season.
Best Case: The Lions are one win away from another Big Ten title and this year there is no giving up double digits leads this time. Royster gets another big game and Zug puts on a show. It’s a high scoring game but the Spartans just dont have enough playmakers to keep up with a hungry pack of Lions.
Worst Case: After getting whooped last season MSU has looked forward to getting back at the Lions after they felt they ran up the score. Even though Clark wants to finish the season in Californa, it’s looking like that isn’t going to happen. Its a close game but a late defensive lapse costs the Lions the victory.
All in all the season could be 12-0 or 9-4, but as in all good sports we just have to play the game.