*record scratch* "V-v-v-v-victory march"
*record scratch* “V-v-v-v-victory march!”

DCIAPC fans, I have discovered something horrific. It seems Notre Dame has finally made the obvious but horrific decision to remove “We Are ND” from YouTube. I frantically searched the vast abyss of that site for a harrowing 45 seconds to confirm that my worst fears have become reality. It’s hard to describe how empty I feel. Sad isn’t the right word; I just feel nothing. It feels as if one of my closest friends has been taken away from me, just when I needed him most.

After discovering this tragedy, I couldn’t help but feel that Drake was completely correct, though a little early, when he said that Nothing Was the Same. I retired to my room, wanting to sob but realizing that crying requires emotion, something that the loss of “We Are ND” had left me completely devoid of. I didn’t even mind that I ended the previous sentence in a preposition, which is normally a major pet peeve of mine. I slowly embraced the cold, black arms of death wrapping themselves around me, carrying me into the void. Seriously, this shit was like straight out of a Dostoyevsky novel.

Then, suddenly, just before my crushed soul slipped from my unfeeling, expiring body and into the deafening silence of nothingness, a stroke of light peaked through the darkness. It was only there for a second, but it shocked just enough life into me to chase it. Could it be? For the first time since like 15 seconds ago when I discovered “We Are ND” was no more, I pushed myself to have hope, to solve this mystery.

The light flashed again, longer and more powerful this time. I ran to it. The light was no longer flashing now. It was steadily beaming at me, glowing brighter and stronger by the second. I reached it and let it bathe over me, feeling its warmth and strong smell of delicious schadenfreude rushing over every inch of my skin. It was unlike anything I had ever experienced. Honestly, I had a halfer going. I wasn’t proud, but I let it happen.

As the sexually powerful warmth gushed over me, I heard the echoes of a familiar refrain calling out from the distance.

“Woah, woah, woah…”

Surely this was some powerful drug of my mind, a dream that couldn’t possibly be true. The light. The sound. Was I dying? Was I already dead? Was I in some blissful heaven? If I was, did they have Five Guys there?

“Woah, woah, woah…”

The noise steadily crescendoed into a roar and the light intensified to a piercing flare, beaming straight into my soul.

“Woah, woah, woah…”

Finally, I made my rapturous realization. This was no dream. This was no mirage. I had once again found the power, the glory, the holiness of none other than—”WOAH, WOAH, WOAH…”


WE ARE ND. WE ARE NOTRE DAME.

WE ARE ND. STRONG IN EVERY GAME.

WE ARE ND. WE ARE NOTRE DAME.

WE ARE THE FANS OF NOTRE DAME.

Seriously, those are the words of the chorus. I tried to select an incredibly stupid lyric from the versus, but I could only narrow it down to two lyrics that tied:

1. “Sing the volley cheer on high/Shake down the thunder from the sky/Before each game we always say, play like a champion today”

This one is ghastly if for nothing else than the “shake down the thunder from the sky.” What does that even mean? And to follow it up with jamming the iconic and hilariously ironic “Play Like a Champion Today” considering Notre Dame hasn’t played like a champion since…quick Google search…1988 (Not a typo!!) is just too good.

2. “Cheering strong in every game/We are the fans of Notre Dame/Across the nation hand-in-hand/Sing it throughout throughout the land”

First off, they essentially just repeated the chorus for the first half of this line. That’s hilariously lazy. But the best part of this line has to be when they want us to belt out this glorious tune “throughout throughout the land.” Could they not think of another word with two syllables in the entire English language to fill that gap? I can see the writing session now:

The Writing of “We Are ND”, A Dramatic Play in One Act

Scene opens with two of the finest songwriters of their generation sitting at a conspicuously low table.

Song Writer 1: Hey, maybe we should stop watching this Bob the Builder marathon and finish writing that ‘We Are ND’ song, even though watching the trials and tribulations of Scoop, Muck and Dizzy is vaguely educational and wholly emotionally satisfying. We have to find one more word to add to that ‘throughout the land’ line.

Song Writer 2: And Rolly too! Hold on, what were you saying? I wasn’t really paying attention because I was finishing using Lincoln Logs to build a crude depiction of a log cabin with doors that are waaaaaay too big proportionally to the rest of the building.

SW1: It seems odd that Notre Dame thought it prescient to have two six-year-olds write a song for their school that their athletic department is going to actively promote.

SW2: Oh, look! Phineas and Ferb is on! Fuck it, let’s just repeat the word ‘throughout’ two times in a row. No one will notice.

SW1: But what if some annoying college kid with no life and a tiny blog platform decides to take us to task for the relatively inoffensive act of writing this son—oh look an extremely manipulative advertisement of questionable morality that is designed to get me to annoy the living shit out of my mom until she buys me this stupid piece of crap that I don’t need! Wait, what was I saying?

SW2: Speaking of your mom, does she still keep Capri Sun in the fridge?

SW1: Notre Dame’s last national title came literally two decades before we were born.

SW2: Goddammit I just got a bead stuck up my nose again. 

/scene

By the way, in order to get “We Are ND” into this post, I had to track it down in some weird format on an obscure website, download it because I couldn’t figure out how to embed the odd format into the post and then upload it to YouTube as an unlisted video so the ND copyright/modesty preservation police wouldn’t take it down. I also wrote this 1,000+ word (!!!) scribe about my bullshit journey to find the video and myself. You’re damn welcome. Now excuse me while I watch this video on a loop 5,826 times in a row.


 

In games we picked last week:

  • Arizona State’s (-2.5) defense took the Notre Dame leprechaun out into the woods, sho—just kidding, but seriously, the Sun Devil defense impressed last weekend and helped fully launch ASU into the playoff discussion.
  • Northwestern (+1.5) somehow covered this spread AND LOST to Michigan 10-9, an appropriately stupid result to what was easily the stupidest college football game I have ever seen. That is not at all an exaggeration.
  • TCU (-6) impressively laid a beatdown on a very good Kansas State team (at least we think so based on other evidence) and climbed into the playoff committee’s coveted Top 4 that everyone is going nuts about with FOUR WEEKS OF MEANINGFUL GAMES REMAINING. Seriously, calm down everyone. The fact that Alabama is ranked fifth right now could not be more meaningless. Quit drinking and go to bed.
  • Speaking of Alabama (-6.5), the Crimson Tide also somehow covered in overtime despite attempting to blow this one and lose late in the fourth quarter.
  • Ohio State (+3.5) put together the most impressive performance we’ve seen in the Big Ten this year and firmly established itself as the conference’s only hope to get a team into the playoff.

After the first over-.500 week from any of us in a while, Matt picked up a game in the standings on Bob and me.

Season Last Week
Matt 26-29 3-2
Harry 23-32 2-3
Bob 22-33 2-3

Here are the splits. As you can see, Matt’s record is slightly boosted by an unsustainably good run of picks alone. I started 4-1 when picking alone and quickly regressed to .500. We’ll see what happens with Matt.

We All Agree  11-18
Matt Alone  4-1
Bob Alone  5-6
Harry Alone  5-5

After a rough week for our previous leader, we have a new leader in the peanut gallery! You’ll need 40 picks to remain next week.

Winning Percentage Season Record Last Week
Andrew Hunt .543 19-16
Creed Tucker .527 29-26 3-2
Andrew Kelley .475 19-21 0-5
Mike .400 16-24 1-4
Bobby .378 17-28
Drew .350 14-26 3-2

Here are this week’s games. As usual, all lines come from Pinnacle and game times are eastern. The rankings come from the College Football Playoff Rankings.

Iowa (-3.5) at Illinois, Noon, BTN

I have about as much to say about this game as I have interest in watching it. Enjoy your Saturday, Matt.

#1 Mississippi State at #5 Alabama (-8.5), 3:30, CBS

Speaking of so-bad-it’s-too-good-to-not-watch songs about college football teams, here’s the latest embarrassing entry into the pantheon from a random Mississippi State student who clearly has way more time on his hands than musical ability:

#16 Nebraska at #20 Wisconsin (-6.5), 3:30, ABC

Big Ten fans better enjoy this one, because after this game, the conference slate for the rest of the regular season is about as watchable as “All About That State”.

Northwestern at #18 Notre Dame (-17.5), 3:30, NBC

The actual lyrics of the “We Are ND” rap (and I use the word “rap” in the most liberal sense of the word:

“So if you want to test your luck, it’s the Fighting Irish getting tough

If it’s too hot, gonna turn it up on the field so the heat gon’ burn it up

Whether the odds be great or small, ole Notre Dame, we will win over all

While the sons go marching on to victory”

I tragically died of my IQ plummeting so quickly that it actually defied the laws of physics and exceeded terminal velocity while listening to and transcribing that rap. RIP me.

#3 Florida State (-2.5) at Miami, 8, ABC

Just win the damn game, Miami. Do it for all of us. Win the damn game. Meanwhile, this is for sale at All Canes just down the street from my house and will definitely be my next clothing purchase:

Screen Shot 2014-11-13 at 5.15.52 AM

Let’s get to the picks.

Iowa-Illinois:

Harry: I did a double take when I first saw this line, even though Iowa just got absolutely destroyed by a Minnesota team that Illinois beat. (Side note: how the hell did that happen?!?!) Iowa has still shown that they’re better than completely pathetic aside from last week and Illinois is yet to be competitive for a full game against anyone who isn’t completely pathetic aside from that Minnesota game. Iowa -3.5

Bob: Before I begin my picks this week, I would like to briefly explain why I don’t bet on football. Last week, Northwestern scored its first touchdown in the game in the final ten seconds before missing the two-point conversion, losing by one, yet still covering the spread. Not scoring the touchdown (very plausible) or losing at all in overtime by more than 1.5 points (extremely plausible) would have allowed Michigan to cover, as they deserved. [ED Harry: Hard to say either team deserved anything from in that game aside from a swift kick to the ‘nads.] Instead, Northwestern went for the two-point conversion and missed it, pulling the rare cover of a 1.5-point spread despite losing. Later that night, LSU (6.5-point underdogs to Alabama) gave up a field goal as time expired to send the game into overtime. Essentially, not kicking the ball out of bounds OR playing any defense (which had been good all game) would have given LSU a win an easy cover. Instead, the game goes into overtime, which means the game was basically a tie. Alabama got the first possession in overtime and scored a touchdown before stopping LSU. In short, LSU was penalized for extending the game into overtime, whereas if they had lost in regulation by six points or fewer, they would have covered, or if they had had the first possession in overtime, kicked a field goal, then given up a touchdown, they would have covered. Tough to follow, but basically I got screwed out of two wins. Anyway, with this game, I agree with what Harry said completely. Iowa -3.5

Matt: As much as I’d like to put my faith in Illinois here, I don’t feel confident in them winning the game. Iowa has been highly inconsistent this season, but they should be able to move the ball against Illinois much better than against Minnesota’s stout defense. Wes Lunt’s return should give the Illini offense a much-needed boost, yet it still won’t be enough to beat the Hawkeyes nor cover this spread. Iowa -3.5

Mississippi State-Alabama:

Harry: I confidently think Alabama will take care of this game, even enough to put it as my top confidence game this week in ESPN’s College Pick ‘Em. 8.5 points is a lot to give up to the undefeated Bulldogs, but Mississippi State hasn’t seen an opponent of Alabama’s quality this year. You can point to MSU’s blowout win in Baton Rouge and Alabama’s escape from there last week, but LSU was much-improved by the time they played the Crimson Tide. Give me ‘Bama. Alabama -8.5

Bob: I’ve been looking forward to this game as a crashing to earth for the Bulldogs, but now that I see the spread, I am a little reluctant to pick against them. My justification for this is identical to my picking LSU last week – I still LOVE Alabama as a top team and find them better than Mississippi State, but I can’t give up this many points when MSU could easily win this game or keep it close. Mississippi State +8.5

Matt: This is an insane line. Think about how ridiculous it is for a team to be favored by 8.5 points over the number one team in the nation. I’d be curious to know if that has ever happened before in the history of college football. I have bet against Mississippi State consistently this year, mostly because I don’t find their wins to be all that impressive. Harry mentioned the win over LSU, which occurred when LSU was a mediocre football team (especially their defense), but they also have a home win over Auburn that was one of the flukier games I’ve seen this year (there were boatloads of turnovers on both sides). I just can’t shake this feeling that Alabama is going to obliterate the Bulldogs on Saturday. Alabama -8.5

Nebraska-Wisconsin:

Harry: Wait, Nebraska’s an underdog in this game?!?!?! Nebraska +6.5

Bob: ^. I saw both these teams play in person, and I know Wisconsin had an off game in Evanston, but Nebraska just looked way stronger to me. Hard to pick against them and all these points. Nebraska +6.5

Matt: Wisconsin has found their stride the last couple of weeks, with blowout wins over multiple Big Ten teams. If this line were four points lower, I would be tempted to take the Badgers. At this point in the season though, I’d take Nebraska and 6.5 points against any team in the Big Ten not named Ohio State. Nebraska +6.5

Northwestern-Notre Dame:

Harry: This is line is far too low. I highly doubt the Northwestern defense will be able to produce five turnovers like Arizona State’s did last week against the Domers and after the Mildcats’ offensive performance against Michigan, I’m not sure how they plan on breaking 10 points in South Bend. Notre Dame -17.5

Bob: Northwestern played one of the worst offensive games of football I’ve ever witnessed last week. Meanwhile, much to the dismay of everyone who loves to shit on Everett Golson, he is going to destroy the Wildcats secondary on Saturday. Notre Dame -17.5

Matt: Upset Special of the Week: at the time of my writing, Harry has yet to insert “We Are ND” into this piece. Truly unbelievable. Notre Dame -17.5 

[ED Harry: This was true at the time Matt made his picks. I kind of hung him out to dry by writing the column on “We Are ND” and I apologize for that. On second thought, I don’t really care.]

Florida State-Miami:

Harry: The fact that this line is still so low is crazy to me. I thought for sure people would bet this line up to four or five points, but in some books the line has actually moved towards Miami. While I agree there are reasons to be confident about Miami’s chances, I simply can’t take the ‘Canes getting anything less than a touchdown. Plus, even if Miami pulls the upset, the Tallahassee Police Department will just cover it up before any evidence can see the light of day. FSU -2.5 (Yuck) 

Bob: I always get really scared picking the “obvious” pick, but it’s so hard to justify the Seminoles’ giving up less than a field goal to a three-loss team. FSU -2.5

Matt:

Sebastian +2.5

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