2015 College Football Holiday Wish List: Cavalcade of Whimsy, Dec. 22

    What every college football teams wants this holiday season: Pete Fiutak's comments on the college football world.

    December 22, 2015


    What every college football teams wants this holiday season, from the 2015 Cavalcade of Whimsy non-denominational, non-judgmental, doesn’t-expect-anything-in-return-but-you’re-a-bad-human-if-there-isn’t-at-least-a-gift-card-for-caffeine, Holiday Grab Bag of Fondness.


    Follow and/or Contact or Baskets of Mini Muffins to @PeteFiutak  


    “Well, Elaine, let’s examine the word “Santa”, shall we? Santa. Let’s see, what have we got here? We’ve got an S and an A, an N, a T, and another A. Hmm … Who could be causing all those laps to bounce up and down curiously? Who would help grown men peel the focus from the baby Jesus on his birthday? Who could it be, I just don’t know. Could it be … Satan!!!”

    Yes, Santa does exist … And he has hair of Saban and body of Bielema.

    What does every team really want this holiday season? You can’t find the right gifts at a Wal-Mart – although you can find the national championship trophy there if Alabama wins it – and you can’t get up at 3 a.m. to beat down the hordes of runaway muumuus thinking they’re saving 20% on crap marked up 25% two days earlier.

    So let Uncle Fiu – always the last invited to the Christmas party, and the first to leave – get the job done. In some cases, I’m giving away a wish for the future, in others, a prayer for the past.

    Happy holidays to all the good little college football programs out there. And for the ones who cheated their asses off, and you know who you are, there’s still a little something for you, too.

    For the holidays, I wish/hope/give …

    Air Force

    That the rest of the coaching carousel keeps forgetting about Troy Calhoun.

    Akron

    An offense that looks as cool as the terrific uniforms – and to help out the killer defense.

    Alabama

    For Nick Saban to provide better and less condescending answers in press conferences than that soda bottle.

    Appalachian State

    Another year of a healthy, happy RB Marcus Cox and just a few more key defensive stops in the really, really big Sun Belt games.

    Arizona

    That the offense doesn’t have to put up 500 yards a game for the team to have a chance.

    Arizona State

    A fourth overtime vs. Oregon.

    Arkansas

    For Bret Bielema to all of a sudden remember why he was tabbed by Barry Alvarez as the Next Big Thing Head Coach. (Hint, it has something to do with being a next-level defensive-minded coach.)

    Arkansas State

    A third year of the same head football coach – making Blake Anderson a relative lifer for the program.

    Army

    Ken Niumatalolo.

    Auburn

    An offense that actually works and … wait. Auburn? Yeah, Auburn. And a one-piece sweatervest/dickie/visor combo.

    BYU

    That Kalani Sitake’s production matches the potential.

    Ball State

    That the MAC team with the highly-paid head man – for a MAC program – can at least start losing games by fewer than double-digits.

    Baylor

    A tweak in the offensive scheme so the quarterbacks stop breaking necessary parts of their bodies.

    Boise State

    A dominant home field advantage again.

    Boston College

    Package arrived – Patrick Towles will be ready to roll right away.

    Bowling Green

    That Mike Jinks is good enough to be up or an even better gig than the ones his predecessors left for.

    Buffalo

    Extra chili on the Ted’s footlong – some things are more important than football.

    California

    For Jared Goff to decide his game needs some more tweaking and honing.

    Central Michigan

    Nine more points against both Western Michigan and Toledo.

    Charlotte

    To learn from the Georgia State blueprint along with an It Gets Better t-shirt.

    Cincinnati

    For the Big 12 to want to expand its reach and TV markets as it creates a natural rival for West Virginia.

    Clemson

    Donation made to the Human Fund – Clemson already received its gift by getting to play in the ACC.

    Colorado

    To be able to spend one year at the Pac-12 South table and be able to look around and know who the sucker is.

    Colorado State

    For Faton Bauta to be the type of dual-threat playmaker Georgia probably needed to spend more time developing.

    Connecticut

    A Randy Edsall rushing offense to go along with the Bob Diaco defense.

    Duke

    For college football to institute a replay system that allowed officials to go back and correct potentially missed … uh, oh yeah.

    East Carolina

    A better APR so it could be one of those 5-7 bowl teams that’s become all the rage.

    Eastern Michigan

    To finally not be the worst directional Michigan school.

    Florida

    On February 3rd, for Jacob Eason to call a press conference that starts with him saying, “After a lot of thought … “

    Florida Atlantic

    An official in that Florida game who knows what pass interference is.

    Florida International

    To have more chances at bowl eligibility by just winning one of the final two games – and to come closer than a combined 115-7 in the effort.

    Florida State

    For bar time in Tallahassee to become 2:30 p.m.

    Fresno State

    More Carrs.

    Georgia

    That the fan base doesn’t have to pay for an entire tenure of dopey headlines using the word Smart.

    Georgia Southern

    Another Arbuckle.

    Georgia State

    That soon the program becomes strong enough that it can hire away the Tulane head coach.

    Georgia Tech

    The return of the days of an efficiently completed downfield pass when the receiver has single coverage.

    Hawaii

    For a quarterback as productive as Nick Rolovich was.

    Houston

    For the Big 12 to take on Houston so that Tom Herman can be a Power 5 head coach sooner than later.

    Idaho

    That America will finally start paying attention to the late night ads desperately begging for donations to do something, anything, whatever is possible to give so that Idaho can finally generate a defensive stop.

    Illinois

    I want, an athletic director, no, I want a head football coach. I want, a chancellor, I want … a milkshake. I want …

    Indiana

    A third overtime against Michigan.

    Iowa

    A single fourth down stop in the final nine minutes of the Big Ten championship.

    Iowa State

    That Matt Campbell does for Iowa State what Gary Pinkel did for Missouri and not what Tim Beckman did to Illinois.

    Kansas

    For everyone to remember that Baylor wasn’t built in a day, either.

    Kansas State

    For one more shot for Bill Snyder – and with an offense that actually works.

    Kent State

    A touchdown, a field goal, or anything fun for the nation’s worst scoring offense.

    Kentucky

    All the promise and potential from a few years ago to finally turn into production, at least offensively.

    LSU

    For everyone to look back 365 days from now and say, as a heater LSU team is preparing for the playoff, “remember that time when Les Miles was about to get canned?”

    Louisiana-Lafayette

    For the Ragin’ Cajuns to get that mojo working again from before around mid-November.

    Louisiana-Monroe

    That Matt Viator can turn ULM into another McNeese State.

    Louisiana Tech

    For more Jeff Driskels and Kenneth Dixons to want to be a part of the Skip Holtz offense.

    Louisville

    The Bobby Petrino magic to start working again offensively with all the young talent.

    Marshall

    For the Thundering offense of last year to resurface in 2016.

    Maryland

    For D.J. Durkin to be good enough to be considered for the vacant Michigan head coaching job in 2018.

    Massachusetts

    For Mark Whipple, Part 2 to start resembling more of Mark Whipple, Part 1

    Memphis

    That Justin Fuente and Paxton Lynch aren’t taking the program with them.

    Miami

    For Mark Richt’s self-evaluation from Georgia has something to do with finding a badass streak.

    Miami University

    A timely takeaway – or just not so many turnovers – to save the woeful offense.

    Michigan

    To be good enough to actually be the Big Brother in the state again.

    Michigan State

    For Urban Meyer to keep forgetting to hand the ball off to his next-level running backs.

    Middle Tennessee

    For the entire Stockstill family to continue the 2015 success into the new year.

    Minnesota

    For Tracy Claeys to actually start winning games and not just come close.

    Mississippi State

    For top quarterback prospects to want to be the next Dak. And, in the stocking, of course, more cowb … I can’t do it.

    Missouri

    A reasonable answer to why the program didn’t break the bank to get Tom Herman (who Mizzou AD Mack Rhoades hired when he was at Houston).

    Navy

    No gift needed – the program got its present when Ken Niumataolo didn’t go to BYU.

    Nebraska

    Chestnuuuuuts roasting, on an open firrrre. Scott Froooost, nipping at … your nose.

    Nevada

    More bullets in that Pistol for the passing game to balance out the ground attack.

    New Mexico

    Just a few more completed passes to take advantage of everyone and the waterboy cheating up against the run.

    New Mexico State

    Two 6-4, 320-pound defensive tackles who can move a little bit, and a 6-3, 340-pound nose tackle who doesn’t like Alabama and wants to be the star of a run defense.

    North Carolina

    A win over a team that doesn’t suck at playing college football.

    NC State

    More games against teams that aren’t good at playing college football and fewer going off to bowl games.

    North Texas

    For Seth Littrell to quickly show why he’d be the better choice than TCU offensive coordinator Doug Meachem.

    Northern Illinois

    For the Big 12 to see the potential of what the greater Chicago area might mean to the conference five years from now.

    Northwestern

    A few downfield targets to finally allow the offense to do something interesting offensively.

    Notre Dame

    A do-over on those two plays.

    Ohio

    All-wheel drive on this thing to be able to finally get it over that hump.

    Ohio State

    A full-season interest level to match the talent.

    Oklahoma

    No need for a gift – moving from No. 3 to No. 4 and getting Clemson in the playoff instead of Alabama is more than enough.

    Oklahoma State

    To get biggest of all the big games against the top Big 12 teams at home so … oh, wait. Nevermind.

    Old Dominion

    A redo on a home against Florida Atlantic with a bowl appearance on the line.

    Ole Miss

    More of whatever magic it takes to bring in more talents like Nkemdiche, Treadwell, Tunsil, Engram, Conner …

    Oregon

    A phone call from Kyler Murray interested in a visit.

    Oregon State

    For the Beavers to be as good as Gary Andersen’s Utah State teams.

    Penn State

    Christian Hackenberg to realize he still needs work – and an offensive line to protect him.

    Pitt

    A year of health and speedy recovery for James Conner.

    Purdue

    More games against Nebraska and, apparently, fewer against every other team in college football.

    Rice

    After allowing 36 touchdown passes and coming up with two interceptions, a secondary that can do something positive.

    Rutgers

    For no one to have to wonder what Greg Schiano might have been able to do.

    SMU

    For the 2015 season to have ended at about the seven-minute mark of the opener against Baylor.

    San Diego State

    A wee bit more of an efficient passing game to go along with the killer running … ah, screw it. They’re in San Diego. There’s nothing to get them.

    San Jose State

    More Tyler Ervins, and not needing to go to class to earn a bowl bid.

    South Alabama

    A run defense able to come up with a third down stop now and then.

    South Carolina

    The Will Muschamp that at one time was the hottest head coaching prospect in college football.

    South Florida

    For November to officially mark the time when the corner has been turned under Willie Taggart.

    Southern Miss

    For the rest of the world to keep forgetting that Todd Monken is probably among the best head coaching prospects not being talked about.

    Stanford

    A do-over to start the season and an improved circadian rhythm and clock in Evanston.

    Syracuse

    A hearty handshake – the program already got its gift in somehow being able to get Dino Babers.

    TCU

    Another shot at Oklahoma, but with a healthy Trevone Boykin.

    Temple

    Matt Rhule is still the Temple head coach? Gift received.

    Tennessee

    That we all really do “win with this” new Butch Jones contract extension.

    Texas

    A far more patient fan base to let Charlie Strong do what he has to do to completely renovate the program.

    Texas A&M

    A starting quarterback who doesn’t want to be anywhere else but Texas A&M.

    Texas State

    The running game to start doing to other teams what other teams’ running games are doing to the Bobcats.

    Texas Tech

    A wee bit more of an emphasis on maybe, possibly, kinda, sorta trying to stop at least one running play.

    Toledo

    For a few MAC titles to go along with all the other success – and for new head coach Jason Candle to be good enough to be up for a few other gigs in the near future.

    Troy

    For the passing game and offense to be what it’s supposed to be under Neal Brown, and for the defense to keep surprising.

    Tulane

    Getting Willie Fritz is enough of a present. That, and a collective, “Aw (bleep), we have to deal with THIS now?” from the rest of American Athletic.

    Tulsa

    Just a wee bit of defense to go along with the offense. For 502 yards a game to be enough.

    UCF

    For several articles to be soon written by Nebraska people about how soon Scott Frost can take over.

    UCLA

    Josh Rosen progresses into the type of talent who can carry a program all by himself.

    UNLV

    For Tony Sanchez to no longer be known as the guy who coached up Bishop Gorman.

    USC

    Clay Helton to be good enough really and truly be the head coach of one of college football’s premier programs.

    UTEP

    Some semblance of pop in the passing game and/or some semblance of a secondary to come up with a key stop.

    UTSA

    The ability to score whenever the offense gets a chance – after finishing 112th in the nation in red zone offense – and some ability to pull out a close game.

    Utah

    For 2015 to be just the start of the Pac-12 success, and not a culmination.

    Utah State

    A 14th year of eligibility for Chuckie Keeton.

    Vanderbilt

    An offense that can do something, anything, with the passing game, the red zone production, the scoring ability, the efficiency …

    Virginia

    For Bronco Mendenhall to be the best of the new ACC coaching hires.

    Virginia Tech

    For this to be known as Justin Fuente’s Hokie program ten years from now.

    Wake Forest

    An offense that can score more than 17 points a game on a consistent basis.

    Washington

    For fans to not have to refer to the Steve Sarkisian era as, “the good old days.”

    Washington State

    One extra crack at that kick against Stanford.

    West Virginia

    For players good enough to have opposing head coaches shake their heads in disbelief before being high-fived.

    WKU

    For the rest of college football to keep forgetting that Jeff Brohm might really be the best young head coaching prospect out there.

    Western Michigan

    To fast-forward a few more years when P.J. Fleck turns into a truly elite head coach.

    Wisconsin

    1) A running game. 2) One fewer turnover against Iowa. 3) One fewer turnover against Northwestern. 4) No, really, a running game.

    Wyoming

    To grow into a powerhouse FCS-caliber program like North Dakota State.

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