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College football Saturdays are back

A GRIP ON SPORTS

The first Saturday of the college football season was pretty good if you are a fan of the nation's top-ranked teams. That means you USC and Alabama fans. You can whoop and holler as much as you want. But see that guy trying to sneak out the door? He's a Michigan fan. Pity him. Read on.


••••••••••

• There was a cornucopia of college football on the television set yesterday starting so early even I didn't get to watch much of the Notre Dame game in Ireland. But when I finally turned off the TV at almost 11, I had seen enough college football to sate any type of football-related lust for the next week, that's for sure. I saw some great football, even some great football from Pac-12 team (Nevada's in the Pac-12 this season, isn't it?), and some not-so-great football (Rocky Long has a great first name, if it is used as a description of some of his coaching decisions Saturday). I saw a Michigan team that looked as if it didn't want to be in Dallas and an Alabama team that is going to benefit from Doug Nussmeier's play-calling (if Nick Saban has the guts to let him continue to run play-action). And I saw a Husky team that is going to need a real jump in play between now and its next game – at LSU. All-in-all, a great way to start the football season.

• One last thought about the weekend. Cougar fans were really down after Thursday night's 30-6 shellacking at the hands of BYU, and they had some justification. But they can take some satisfaction this morning in not having the worst season-opener in the conference. That distinction has to go to either California, which lost to Nevada at home, or to Colorado, which did the same with Colorado State. But really, how much does other's misery help you forget your own?

•••

• Washington State: The Cougars took the day off from football, but that doesn't mean Christian Caple was lounging around, watching football. Well, maybe. He still had a blog post yesterday and another this morning. … With the NFL just around the corner, Jim Meehan caught up with former Cougar kicker Rian Lindell.

• EWU: The Eagle basketball team is headed on a foreign trip later this week. Europe? Australia? Brazil? Nope. Canada. Jim Allen has the story. … Favored Montana got past South Dakota at home, Cal Poly did the same to USD, Portland State defeated NAIA power Carroll, Idaho State couldn't handle Air Force in Colorado and Weber State, under new coach Jody Sears, lost at Fresno State.

• Idaho: A good Saturday for the WAC as two newcomers from Texas posted upsets. Texas State went to Houston and roughed up the Cougars, 30-13, while UT San Antonio won for the first time on the road, 33-31, on a last-second field goal.

• Whitworth: The Pirates didn't play up to their standards last season, but if Saturday's season-opening 28-13 win over highly regarded College of St. Scholastica on the road is any indication, this year should be much better.

• Preps: The WIAA held a four-game football extravaganza at Eastern Washington University yesterday, highlighted by Ferris' GSL-opening win over Central Valley (left). Greg Lee was there and filed this story.

• Chiefs: Spokane opened the exhibition season with a loss at Everett.

• Mariners: Even Felix (despite the big S on his shirt) can't do it alone. After the M's squandered numerous chances to score and take some pressure off King Felix, he (and the bullpen) finally melted down in the eight inning. The result? A 5-2 Angel win. … Brendan Ryan turned one heck of a double play yesterday. … The M's called up a couple players on the day the rosters could expand.

• Seahawks: Now that the Seahawks' roster is somewhat settled, how do you think they will do? That's the subject of our poll this morning and a good question, one I'm not confident enough to answer. I do feel, though, they will be good enough to challenge for the division title and possibly play that role. By that, I mean being the one team that surfaces in the NFL each year, playing well over its head (think San Francisco last season) and setting the league on its ear. … They will have to do it without Kellen Winslow at tight end, as he was cut yesterday.

• Sounders: The MLS stretch run begins today for the Sounders in Dallas and boy is it a tough road.

•••

• That's your Sunday morning report. Hope your holiday weekend is going well. Mine started off great and guess what? There is still all of Sunday and Monday to go. Cool. Until tomorrow …


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Jim Allen (@srjimallen) Sports reporter Jim Allen's primary coverage areas are Eastern Washington University football and men's basketball, and college and high school soccer. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jim Meehan (@srjimm) Jim Meehan's coverage areas include Gonzaga University men's basketball, Spokane Shock football, golf and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Chris Derrick Chris Derrick is a sports reporter. His primary coverage areas are the Spokane Chiefs, Spokane Indians, women's basketball and high school softball and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Vince Grippi is the online producer for SportsLink, a product of The Spokesman-Review.

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