WHAT WE KNOW
Massfacts: Let’s look back to what we said about this team approaching last year’s post-Thanksgiving game:
“The University of Massachusetts comes into this game…you know what? Fuck it. Mass comes into this game after another dog shit season where the offense has been unable to do almost anything, averaging a sub-UConn 10.6 points per game and has asked the defense to do way too much. Losing two games at home by a combined 2 points was also super awesome and not at all infuriating.”
“Let’s go out with a victo…aw who the hell am I kidding. Let’s try not to embarrass ourselves and start writing up contracts with Satan for a chance at mediocrity next year.”
GOOD NEWS EVERYONE!
As you all know, we were able to cut Charley Molnar based on the anonymous…donation…for that…very…reas oh fuck did we make a fucking deal with Satan? Yeah. We totally did, didn’t we? You know what? FUCK IT.
I for one welcome our new, dark Overlord.
Overall, this is a greatly improved Mass team and it’s seriously been a joy watching them this season. Froh won’t be playing Friday, but that’s really just fine. We wanted 3 wins this season and got them. We realistically could have had more, but didn’t really do anything to earn more. We often say there are no moral victories, but shit if this season didn’t feel a hell of a lot better. Next season should prove even more so as the only major contributor graduating is Stanley Andre, a consistent player who I think the defense will miss the leadership of, but won’t leave a glaring hole. That is not a knock against Andre, either. He’s seriously been one of the only consistent defenders in the past 3 years, and is a homegrown kid. Best of luck and all that jazz.
BUT. Before we get ahead of ourselves and into next years “Fuck You Very Much Magical Mystery Tour: UMass’ Going Away Quest For A MAC Championship: THE SEASONING” we have Buffalo to play and a game to win for our Senior(s) (Alex Kenney, Daniel Maynes, Quashun Smith, too) hopefully. This game should honestly see the Minutemen playing fast and loose and hopefully preventing too many Austin Whipple down field attempts.
Finally, a win would give UMass a .500 record at home and a winning record at McGuirk. Words that previously made little sense to me.
SUNYfacts: The State University of New York at Buffalo Bulls are coming off an unexpected victory against the Fightin’ Byes, due to a literally unimaginable level of snow deciding to roost in the Buffalo area. The storm resulted in a postponed game against Kent State which was then cancelled because Kent State sucks and Buffalo, though it would have had a chance to finish at 6-6 with wins against Kent and UMass, would not be bowl eligible anyways since two of their wins came against FCS teams and you can only count one for bowl eligibility you weirdos who created this schedule anyway?
This means Buffalo has a worse FBS record than us, which makes me feel warm inside. They also managed to fire their coach mid-season, which is always exciting as an opponent.
The Buffalo Bulls are not a variety of Bull that we at Four Volleys particularly support. There are precisely TEN BULLS that we believe to be the best:
OFFICIAL FOUR VOLLEYS LIST OF TOP TEN BULLS OF ALL TIME FOREVER
Mr. 305/Mr. International. An innovator of under bridge, late night, Miami centric, soda consumption parties. DALE.
9. Actual Pit Bulls
The much-maligned but super-fucking-awesome breed of muscular superdogs, pit bulls are cool as hell, love to lay next to you and play fetch, and make me feel sorry for anyone who hasn’t come to know one personally.
It’s Kevin Costner and Susan Sarandon and baseball. What else is there to say?
The official soda of soccer and douchebags! Drinking Red Bull is essentially announcing you’re tired and __________. That blank can be hung over, trying to get drunk, or just announcing that you really like the taste of urine. Whatever works for you!
5. On Parade
4. Moose Party
Pretty much everyone can agree that Teddy Roosevelt, though he would be extraordinarily out of place in 21st century America’s political correctness lovefest, was a pretty cool dude. He created the National Park System, worked to break up large corporations, and participated in general badassery at a fairly constant pace. Though he left the office of President in 1909, he formed the Progressive, or “Bull Moose,” Party in 1912 to run for President again since he though William Howard Taft was a fucking bitch. No, he didn’t win, but the spirit of the party remains.
As in, “that pass interference call was bullshit.” Or, “that late hit by Trevor Sales was bullshit.” Or even, “the fact they’re not even going to trial is bullshit.” Or, most appropriately, “check your shoes. It smells like you stepped in literal bull shit.”
2. -eit Bourbon/Rye
A favorite among Four Volleys. In fact, it’s how at least ½ of your esteemed editors are writing this preview (the other is drinking $6 red wine). Reasonably priced, reasonably tasty, and reasonably effective. The rye kicks ass in an old fashioned, too.
1. Michael Jordan
His Airness. The Black Cat. Air Jordan. MJ. The GOAT. Michael Jordan was many things, but the one thing we know for certain is he was and remains the greatest Bull of all-time.
Timefacts: The Bulls lead the series all time in a remarkably high number of matchups 6-5. Last year, Buffalo blew out the Minutemen dashing UMass’ hopes of a win streak. Which, frankly, probably helped us sign the contract in blood with Satan that got rid of Charley.
Don’t forget, this fucking guy was our ACTUAL HEAD COACH last year
I always like games where we can even the score.
WHERE TO ENJOY
TV: ESPN3 which we all know by now is not actually television despite ESPN’s best efforts
Radio: WEEI (105.5 FM in Springfield), WVEI (1440 AM in Worcester), WXKS (1200 AM in Boston), and WATD (95.9 FM on the South Shore)
Legal Streams: Video, Audio, Delayed Animated Dots
Four Volleys: Various locales
THANKSGIVING HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL RIVALRY PICK BONANZA
Norwood High School Football Mustangs: In what seems to be a spat of symmetry I can’t fucking shake, my high school football team AGAIN parallels the Minutemen, coming in at 3 wins. Last year, they matched the Minutemen through the fire and the flames racking up 1 total win. Further following in the footsteps, the new coach who was supposed to bring them back to the good old days did none of those things and was summarily fired. Unfortunately, also like UMass, he didn’t take the Athletic Director with him. The AD, in his infinite wisdom, felt he should hire a new football coach (seems reasonable) and not a week later announcing his retirement, precluding the school from selecting the hybrid AD/Head Football Coach pretty much any program needs to be successful. Oh, the guy he hired sucks and actually rehired previously fired head coaches (as in, less than 5 years ago) on his key assistants. Great. Awesome. I can’t even be bothered to look up awful Dedham’s record, I’m sure it’s terrible, and I’m sure Norwood will lose because I can’t have nice things. Happy Thanksgiving, lets go get drunk.
East Longmeadow Spartans: First things first: EL has a chance to grab back-to-back Thanksgiving wins for the first and only time since the ridiculous outlier that was the seven-turkey win streak from 1970-1976. In the other 47 historical contests, the mighty Spartans have managed only seven more wins. This does not include the first ever pre-turkey postseason meeting between the two teams earlier this month, where Longmeadow decided to ruin the exorcism of EL’s Springfield Central demons by knocking them out of the playoffs in the WMass D2 Finals. Assholes. But there are three good things about Thursday’s game, from a scarlet-and-grey perspective:
- Longmeadow has to be thinking about their state championship game on 12/6.
- EL has nothing left but to avenge their playoff loss and drink Lancer blood.
- It’s in East Longmeadow.
The Spartans only lost by 8 points to these black-clad jerks a couple weeks ago, and have done nothing since that game but prepare for this one. They say it’s hard to beat a team twice in one season in football. Well, now the good guys get a chance to put that theory to work. And since the Pigskin Prophet has not yet posted his “line” for the games, I’m going to go on a limb and say Spartans take this one by 10, thanks to a 200-yard rushing day from Mike Maggipinto and the consistent brilliance of coach Scott Raymond.
Update: The Prophet has posted his predictions for tomorrow’s games, and oh my god he thinks we’ll win by 14. This can’t be a good sign.
Buffalo has two football teams, neither of which play IN Buffalo, with a mascot only separated by a vowel switch. This Buffalo is of the Bull varietal. A bull is a large male cow, and I have the utmost faith in Sam’s marksmanship to hit true and slay the foul beast. For the good of the nation.
Everytime Buffalo’s lake effect disaster is discussed or shown, feel free to roll that forwards towards a drink to be named later
For assuming Buffalo was both the city and mascot, though it is neither
ESPN3 shows a montage of famous bulls (bonus sip if Michael Jordan is included)
Austin Whipple completes a pass
Khalil Mack mentioned on the live stream or in the stands
Austin Whipple completes a pass to a Buffalo Bull
Buffalo scores a touchdown. Come on, defense.
When you realize Jean Sifrin is definitely declaring for the draft this year
Down at the half
Adventures in place kicking
HALF THE BOTTLE
Todd Stafford sighting
DRINK ALL OF THE CHAMPALE
FIND FOUR VOLLEYS
Various locales! Jerry will be in his office blatantly streaming the game, because he has frankly run out of PTO. Pockets will be under the flag with an assortment of FV-affiliates.
If the Bills have the Jills, the Bulls must have the Cows. It is for this reason I see UMass winning outright.