So as some of you may, or may not know, I spent the last week with family on a Disneyworld vacation. I obviously wasn't in the house for either football game, but I was able to catch most of both games on TV at my resort (A&M) and at the ONE bar in Downtown Disney with a TV on the game (grrrr).
Anyway, here are some thoughts on the week:
- As usual, heavy LSU representation in Orlando, along with the other 13 schools in the conference. In an upset, there might have been more MAC and If PAC-12 schools than any other conference. In another upset (or maybe not, I suppose), I got as many Duck Dynasty quotes thrown at me as I did "Geaux Tigers!"
- Spent a day at Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure (had no idea they were different parks). The cool thing about that was I got to check out the Springfield area of Universal, and even have a beer at Moe's Tavern. You might think they'd just find some cheap swill and stick the Duff name on it, but it was actually from Florida Brewing Company out of Melbourne. The "Duff Dry" was outstanding.
- Le Cellier at Epoct's Canada is an OUTSTANDING restaurant.
- Not only did a British guy pour me a Guinness, he even made a little shamrock in the head with the tap.
- FYI for any of you planning a trip -- the Toy Story ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios will have a two-hour wait no matter how early you get there, and you may or may not be asked to perform sweatshop labor in line. And it's still totally worth it. Fast-passes will be out within a half-hour of the park opening.
- I bet y'all think I'm exaggerating.
- Muppet Vision 3D has not been updated at all in the last 15 years or so. I still laugh the entire time.
- On to the football. It was nip-and-tuck, but kudos to the Tigers for closing out strong, getting to 9-3 and avoiding the post-Bama malaise we've seen at times. Yeah, LSU let Arkansas back into that game after jumping out on top, but I don't put it quite in the same category of a mail-in job. More a case of a team losing focus and thinking that they had the opponent knocked out long before the final bell.
- Still nothing firm on the status of Zach Mettenberger's knee, but if these two images don't etch him in your heart you probably don't have one:
Emotional moment with Mettenberger captured by our own Morgan Beard. RT @morganbeard: We'll miss you, Mett. #LSU pic.twitter.com/jRKBbvK1UM— Sports Showtime (@TTV_Sports) November 30, 2013
- I tend to just assume that juniors that have a decent opportunity to go pro before their senior years will do so, but maybe Anthony Jennings' performance can maybe convince one of the receiving duo to return. It's going to be tough and I respect their decisions either way, but man, that alone would be huge.
- Selfishly, I just really, really want to watch Jarvis Landry play for one more year.
- Another underrated aspect of Jennings-to-Dural: Travin Dural was a guy that, in my opinion, seemed to struggle with his confidence at times. A play like that, which was so simple to make that it could have almost been easy to overthink and screw up, can be a huge boost for the offseason, of which he's going to be a big part.
- Some of the other juniors, the ones with nicknames, however, might have reached their time to move on.
- Love that Connor Neighbors got his extra season, as he could be a key cog in next year's offense. Other returnees I'm excited to watch going forward (including the bowl game): Rashard Robinson & Tre'davious White, Ricky Jefferson, Corey Thompson (though his knee injury hurts), Danielle Hunter, Kwon Alexander and Desean Smith.
- In terms of bowl prospects, your guess is as good as mine. We know that we tend to get hosed on the politics of all this, but I have a hard time believing the Cotton Bowl passes on LSU. Yeah, we've been to Dallas a ton lately, but there won't be many alternatives. A&M was there last year, and LSU beat them and finished a game ahead. Auburn will, at a minimum, get the SEC title game loser's spot in the Capital One Bowl (which I don't want to play in anyway), Bama will still, most likely, get a BCS at-large berth. The Cotton Bowl rarely picks an SEC East team, and the only real contender for that would be South Carolina, as Mizzou is staring at either the Sugar Bowl with a win in Atlanta, or the aforementioned Cap One. Question then is, do we get to poke the corpse of Mack Brown with a stick, or a team like Oklahoma State or Baylor. Personally, I'd much rather see Texas.