October 1 2023 –
Mike Kern’s Fraud Five
LSU — With apologies to my Cajun friends, and they know who they are, it’s OK to lose at Mississippi, which was also ranked (but seven spots lower), in a rivalry matchup. But you probably shouldn’t be giving up 55 points in the process, including the winning 13-yard touchdown pass with 39 seconds left after you led by nine midway through the fourth quarter. Just saying.
Central Florida — In their Big 12 debut, UCF had a 28-point lead midway through third period. And still led by 25 early in the fourth. It wasn’t enough. Visiting Baylor wound up winning, 36-35, on a late field goal. And UCF then missed a long FG at the end. A 72-yard fumble return with six minutes left didn’t help. Anyway, that’s unacceptable. It was the biggest comeback in Baylor history.
Florida — Again, sorry to my Florida friends. It’s OK to lose at Kentucky, which has a nice program if you haven’t been paying attention. But maybe not by 33-14, especially two weeks after you upset Tennessee in the Swamp. Re’Mahn “Ray” Davis, a Vanderbilt transfer from Temple, rushed for 280 yards. Ouch. Kentucky, which is unbeaten, led 23-zip after 22 minutes. Good thing Wildcats only scored three points in the final 26.
Utah — Not for losing at Oregon State, in what is easily the best conference in the country. Even Southern Cal will have a tough time running the table in the PAC-12’s farewell journey. But when you’re ranked 10th (OSU was 18) you should at least score more than seven. And the TD didn’t come until there were five minutes to go. It happens. Nothing overly egregious, but it was a rather lean week for pickings. Everything is relative. And I know I probably missed something. So I blame myself.
U.S. Ryder Cup team — Why not? It’s 30 years and counting now for the Americans on European soil, and it wasn’t close. So why were the Americans favored? It was pretty much over on Friday. But to be fair, they have won three of the last four when they’re home, all rather easily. And the loss was that gag job in 2012 at Medinah. So … we’ll see you in two years at Bethpage Black, where the New York crowd should whip things into a frenzy. And by the way, while I have no problem with veteran caddie Joe LaCava getting into it with the fans late on Saturday in support of his guy, Patrick Cantlay. That’s all part of this format. But did he really need to get Rory McIlroy so fired up about it? I don’t think so. And he should know better. A caddie never gets in the way of what’s going on on the course. Especially in that atmosphere. The last thing the Euros needed at any point was more reason. But whatever. It was all so predictable. Our side will try again to end what is now a way-too-long foreign drought in 2027 in Ireland. Maybe Tiger Woods will be the captain. Or Phil Mickelson. LIV that.