It's important! Next question.
Orson Charles, far left, literally gulped as the question was asked. It was a difficult question that plenty of other Georgia players were getting: Did they believe they were playing for their coach's job? "There's a lot of talk, like you said, that Coach (Mark) Richt is on the hot seat," the tight end and former Plant High star said. "I really hate hearing about that. But we've just got to go out there and just compete." After Richt, near left, went 6-7 in 2010, his job status was a big subject for the offseason. And the topic moved quicker to the front burner after Georgia's performance in a 35-21 loss to No. 5 Boise State in Atlanta to open the season last week. The loss itself wasn't shameful. But the Bulldogs looked overmatched despite an offseason overhaul of their locker room and strength and conditioning program, and an infusion of talent. As a result of the loss, Georgia fell from No. 19 to unranked in the Associated Press poll. And during his weekly news conference, Richt found himself asked about the importance of today's game against No. 12 South Carolina for his and the program's future. "I view it as a very important game," Richt said, leaving his answer to those eight words. Later, another reporter asked if this was a "must-win" game for him. "Didn't I just say it's a really important game?" Richt said. "But do you think it's a must-win," said the reporter from the State newspaper in Columbia, S.C. "I think it's a really important game," Richt said. "Do you want to ask me again? Because you can, and I'll give you the same answer."
Little Sisters of the Poor to get its day in the sun
For at least a half-century, "Little Sisters of the Poor" has been used as a euphemism in college sports to describe a weak opponent. The euphemism's roots can be traced to an emphatic victory by Sen. Robert Taft of Ohio in his 1950 re-election, which the mayor of Cleveland compared to the "Notre Dame football team beating the Little Sisters of the Poor."
As the expression evolved into the vernacular of sports, many failed to realize the Little Sisters of the Poor is, in fact, a religious order founded in France in 1839. After years of being considered the epitome of athletic ineptitude, the Little Sisters finally get a chance to take the field today.
Before Ohio State's game against Toledo, the Buckeyes plan to recognize two Little Sisters from a Toledo suburb. The occasion stems from a remark by Ohio State president E. Gordon Gee, above, who last year criticized Boise State and Texas Christian, proclaiming, "We do not play the Little Sisters of the Poor." The statement resulted in Gee being vilified, especially after TCU beat Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl and finished undefeated and No. 2 in the final polls.
"It was a dumb statement," said Gee, who vowed to eat crow at Antoine's, a restaurant in New Orleans. "It really was."
By the numbers
Freshmen who played last week for Texas against Rice
Married players on the roster for BYU, which plays Texas this week
Approximate net profit on beer sales for West Virginia at last week's home season opener vs. Marshall; the school's board of governors voted in June to allow beer sales at home until midway through the third quarter
Bottles of beer sold during the West Virginia game, about 3,000 more than the next-highest beverage, water
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.
Florida coach Will Muschamp's announcement last week that offensive coordinator Charlie Weis would call games from the sideline instead of the coaches box generated a lot of conversation about the pros and cons of sideline work. Weis and quarterback John Brantley said things worked out great for both of them in the opener against Florida Atlantic. But Weis, a former Notre Dame coach, couldn't help taking a dig at himself this week when asked if he liked having the chance to coach from the sideline and focus on the offense instead of the entire team. "If you're asking me did I like getting fired from Notre Dame as the head coach? No," Weis said, followed by a hearty laugh. "(But) as an offensive coordinator, that's what I've always done. When I'm on the field, you can sit there and just have a conversation and go over things, and it's just kind of settling for (the players). As a matter of fact, when they first come off the field, I don't talk to them. Whether it was good or bad, I don't talk to them. If it was good, I let the players all celebrate together so that I'm not looking for the kudos. And if it's bad … you know the camera is there looking to see what you're going to say. That's not the time. Let (the players) get to the bench. Let them go ahead and sit down. Then you come over and say, 'Okay, what were you thinking?' And there might be an adjective or two in there."