Impact: In case you haven’t heard. http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/football/news?slug=ap-illinois-northwestern A few sportsbooks pulled this game off the board, trying to figure out what the wind might do concerning the total. After a short time, the number returned and was at 49 or 49.5 as it was previously. My take is college football and NASCAR will have something in common this weekend. Northwestern, Illinois and NASCAR drivers will be going in only one direction to get to the finish (goal) line.
Item: Bruce Pearl suspended for first eight SEC games
Impact: Conference commissioner Mike Slive put Tennessee coach on notice that cheating and lying are not to be tolerated; especially in light of the ongoing Cam Newton saga that is dogging the SEC. Pearl won’t be able to coach for roughly a month, except oddly for the non-conference game against Connecticut that falls in this period. Obviously not have head coach will impact the Vols team during this time and oddsmakers will have to determine Pearl’s value in terms of points starting in early January. If Pearl was really a standup person, he wouldn’t come back for UConn game on Jan. 22, which would seemingly hurt more than help his team. But Pearl’s ego is so large; I’d be shocked if he kept away, especially since he has a coach on the other bench who feels his pain. When Connecticut faced stiff potential NCAA violations early this summer, Hall of Fame coach Jim Calhoun noted that he and his staff may have broken rules, but hadn’t cheated. Hey coach, isn’t breaking the rules cheating?
Item: Reggie Bush expects to play
Impact: The New Orleans Saints running back’s contributions don’t figure to impact game against Seattle as he learns to trust leg again.
Item: Cleveland’s Josh Cribbs did not practice Saturday
Impact: The standard reasoning in the NFL is if a player can’t make it to practice by Friday, it’s doubtful he will play. This takes away big weapon from Browns.