Publisher's Note: This new series, from The Correspondent, will be an evolving fixture here on Eastern NC NOW, so keep your visits on a frequent basis, and we will keep you full of even a greater variety of knowledge.
Someone asked me once in an interview
"What was growing up like, where'd you go to school?
And what would you do if you weren't doin' this?"
I'd be drivin' my first car, an old worn-out Dodge
Tryin' to make rent with a dead end job, just makin' due
With tips in a jar, my guitar and an old barstool
It ain't about the fame
It ain't about the fortune
It ain't about the name
It ain't about the glory
I guess I'm sayin' it's always been about
Having a Friday night crowd in the palm of my hand
Cup of brown liquor, couple buddies in a band
Singin' them same damn songs like I am now
I'd be feelin' on fire on a hardwood stage
Bright lights like lightning runnin' through my veins
At the Grand Ole Opry or a show in some no-name town
I'd still be doin' this if I wasn't doin' this - Drew Parker
The Correspondent and The Colonel consult, November 28, 1999, Vucitrn, Kosovo: Above. Click image to enlarge.
June 26, 1876
Little Big Horn, SOUTH DAKOTA Without his Winchester 1866 and a double load out of .44 Henry, Grandfather would not have lived through General Custer's last day standing. On the second day of the fight, laying prone behind an empty ammo box filled with prairie dirt, he quickly learned the difficulty of sustained lever-rifle-fire from this position. However with 15 rounds in the pipe, the rail-thin teenage contract scout from North Carolina -- still a true believer -- was Shume mire with that tactical exchange.
The enlisted troopers suffered as all do when the command chain collapses and it certainly did when Custer split his force into three wings -- and consequently Major Reno's hasty attack on the village was repulsed with heavy casualties. The fact the Ordnance Board had replaced their cavalry repeaters with the new single-shot carbine (to lessen ammunition cost) was a factor in dooming the Seventh Cavalry that day.
Three Kings off a late draw and a prayer had been enough for Grandfather to scoop a forty dollar pot four months earlier, while a weathered steam boat made its way north along the Missouri. Down to his last few silver dollars once passage booked north from Fort Leavenworth, Grandfather disembarked at Yankton with a hankering to upgrade his firepower.
Thirty dollars later he was the proud owner of a well-worn, but serviceable Winchester Model 1866 repeater and a hundred rounds of .44 Henry. The introduction of the 1873 model and a transition to the more robust .44-40 centre-fire cartridge had seen the price of the older rifles drop somewhat, but the "Yellow Boy"
still drew a bid along the frontier. Grandfather would soon understand why.
As the next volley of lofted, highly-arced arrows began to descend upon the 7th -- and the screams emitted from those pin-cushioned -- he recalled the previous day's departure from Mule Skinner. The veteran scout deciding Custer's tactical plan to advance along the north side of the river for the coup de grace flanking attack -- coinciding with Reno assaulting the village from the front -- was doomed from the start and decided to do a runner most Hurryin' Heinz.
Mule Skinner cried out as he exhorted his pony to flank speed: "Attacking highly motivated force in their own tee-pee means you gotta dee dee."
Or something like that, seeing translation from the Lakota somewhat difficult -- as Mule Skinner spoke with a heavy Illyrian-style accent. Not until his adventures in the First Balkan War, some 36 years later, would Grandfather's ears endure such a harsh dialect again.
The previous evening Mule Skinner, after a half canteen of the frontier grape, had babbled between gulps: "Beware the Wolf Moon over Kiev."
Grandfather was puzzled by this phrasing as although he understood the term "Kiev"
was an obscure Lakota-Sioux euphemism for the great buffalo, he was not sure what the phase of the Moon meant in this context.
Regrettably, for the fate of all mankind, when the falling Sioux arrow, that ensured Grandfather would know when rain was coming for the rest of his life, shattered his left arm -- these thoughts departed his mind for quite awhile. Being something of a young punter, he realized the 7th was in big trouble on the road against a highly motivated home team.
Where was General Custer? His column had not been seen or heard from since they drifted to the north side of the river the day before...
TCU vs GEORGIA (minus twelve and the hook) @ Los Angeles Monday 7.30pm EST ESPN
Illinois played a great game that went much to form but lost in devastating fashion as Mississippi State scored nine points in the last seven seconds. Oh well, it happens but from our perspective it was a good call that missed. We can live with that as our record drops to 5-7 and down 2.9 units for the campaign.
Our big error was the rushing total for Illinois at 35, much less than projected but that appears to have been less a factor than we thought. The key point we got right was the defence of Illinois showed up as both State touchdowns were flukes -- oh well, it happens.
We want to think about defence a great deal in examining the match-up between the defending national champs Georgia Bulldogs and this season's Cinderella, the TCU Horned Frogs. This time of year defence is everything.
The line opened 13 and strong TCU action has knocked the game down half a point. The Horned Frogs 5-1-1 against The Man's number the last seven games and the whole world on TCU early; they are the feel good team of 2022.
However, this 2023 and the main thing to understand is that Georgia's defence is light years beyond anything TCU has seen all season. Michigan a strong team but they are vulnerable to a TCU style attack. Georgia all about speed and power in stopping the run.
At QB both Stetson Bennett (GA) and Max Duggan (TCU) were Heisman Trophy finalists and each with their strengths. Duggan the better over all QB but Bennett with the superior supporting cast -- the Georgia offensive line a very solid crew and Bennett's job is to execute without making mistakes. Duggan can make all the plays -- often in spectacular fashion -- but his team's defence doesn't defend.
This dynamic exists primarily due to the culture of the Big 12 -- as with the exception of Kansas State nobody plays any defence in that conference. You saw what happened when the Wildcats went against Alabama from the SEC and now the same conference vs conference match-up takes centre stage for the National Title.
Our call here is GEORGIA (minus twelve and the hook) for three units as we take our first favourite of the year in the last game of the season. We party like it's New Year's Day 1942 as Georgia dons the silver trousers and rolls the Frogs once more:
GEORGIA 40 TCU 26
A pair of recent California temblors indicating some serious tectonic plate activity going on now around LA and Frisco -- and the probability of a 7.0 plus shock is significantly elevated the next thirty days. Should Earth execute a reconfig command during the game (or anything else that stops the contest before conclusion), keep in mind a football result for wagering purposes, under Vegas rules, must reach the five minute mark of the fourth quarter to be official. Once the fourth quarter clock hits 4.59 you have side action (not totals) even if the game does not reach the final gun.
These national TV games not always played to conclusion.