This reporter wading through a sea of obnoxious Gamecocks fans won the college football weekend
Two years ago, we brought you our first installment of the "College football star of the week," where we highlight a specific player, coach, fan or another miscellaneous character as the winner of the college football weekend. The weekly piece went away in 2020 due to COVID (shocker), as the awkward schedule and lack of fans made everything feel significantly lame and un-fun.
Now, god-willing, it appears as though football is all the way back. Fans are back. The pageantry is back. Saturdays are back. No better time than now to bring back our CFB star of the week.
While Week 0 provided plenty of hijinks, we're glad we waited until Week 1, when social media was absolutely BUZZING with incredible CFB content. It felt normal. It felt right. As a result, it feels wrong to single out only one person or team, because the entirety of CFB was the star this weekend. However, this weekend's winner is undoubtedly Mike Uva, the WACH FOX reporter from Columbia, S.C., who waded through a sea of obnoxious Gamecocks fans on Saturday night to bring you this exquisite live report from the tailgate outside Williams-Brice Stadium:
Just an absolute pro's pro. To have the restraint to not only not swing on one of these idiots (particularly the clown at the 30-second mark) AND continue doing your job at a very high level is the stuff of legend. Well done, Mike.
Also, a quick shoutout to South Carolina quarterback Zeb Noland who threw for four touchdowns in the Gamecocks' 46-0 romp over Eastern Illinois to move the team to 1-0. Why is that significant? Well, because Noland is a 24-year-old graduate assistant who S.C. head coach Shane Beamer called upon to start the opener with sophomore starter Luke Doty still nursing a foot injury he suffered in August. Noland is in his final year of eligibility, having already played at Iowa State and North Dakota State, where he was teammates with No. 3 overall pick Trey Lance. Noland may only play one more game, but it's still one of the craziest stories we'll see in college football this season.
(In this section, we'll dole out helmet stickers for a few folks who just missed the cut on "star of the week.")
UCLA's social media manager
In case you missed it, LSU head coach Ed Orgeron called out a UCLA fan as he made his way into the Rose Bowl for his team's season opener on the road:
This, as so many pre-game sh*t-talking attempts so often do, backfired in tremendous fashion, with the Bruins thoroughly dominating the Tigers 38-27. Orgeron is moving further and further away from the Joe Burrow era with each passing day. For now, though, we might just chalk it up to a tough road game to kick off the year. With a pair of cupcakes and a meh Mississippi State team coming up on the schedule, three straight bounce back victories are within Coach O's grasp.
But this tough L turned into a massive L when UCLA's social media manager started feeling his or her self.
Boom, roasted. Five helmet stickers.
Middle-finger girl from Florida State
In what was arguably the game of the weekend between Florida State and Notre Dame, the true star of the epic 41-38 tilt was not Seminoles quarterback McKenzie Milton or Fighting Irish quarterback Jack Coan, both of whom had outstanding nights. No, it was middle-finger girl from FSU, who instantly went viral for this fantastic flip of the bird after a ND scoop n'score that was eventually called back anyway:
Impeccable form. Four helmet stickers.
Excuse me... who on earth is Ren Hefley? Well, he's the Presbyterian quarterback who threw for TEN TOUCHDOWN PASSES on Saturday night:
Did this stat line come against the FCS-School For The Blind? Yes, but it's still insanity. Three helmet stickers.
Great name, even better touchdown run from Monday night's targeting-fest between Ole Miss and Louisville. Somehow, though, the refs swallowed the whistle on this one. Thank god for that:
That's a Madden 2005-esque truck stick right there, folks. Two helmet stickers.
By now, you've seen the Brian Kelly clip. Eh, let's watch it again for more raucous laughs:
Personally, knowing what we know now—that Kelly was quoting former Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach John McKay—I do find this absolutely hilarious. But not because of a great delivery or that I even knew that in the first place, but because Kelly really thought this was going to land. In a social-media era where people are begging, pleading and stepping over each other in the streets to try and be outraged about something, Kelly served this one up on a platter. Just the perfect Week 1 quote for everyone to be fake mad about, reminiscent of Nick Saban's "I'M NOT GOING TO. SO QUIT ASKIN'!!"
Lane Kiffin did his best to upstage Kelly with this epic swing-and-a-miss during his in-game zoom interview as he recovers from COVID-19:
Cripes. Let's just stick to football-coachin', guys. Though this did lead to one of the funniest replies I've ever seen:
One helmet sticker for this elite user of the bird app.
And just like that, we're on to Week 2.