Oh, baby! Look who ESPN gave us this time
I can see the Connecticut smug from here.
Shamed and distraught by their last-place standing, the ESPNers sent in their big hitter last week.
Megasportswriter Gene Wojciechowski swooped in and won last week's contest with a 5-1 record, finally digging his network out of the cellar.
So now they're getting cocky.
Now they're sending in a lightweight pinch hitter by the name of Abraham Diesenhoff.
Oh, never heard of him?
Don't worry - I've never heard him.
I talked to the guy on the phone and couldn't understand a word he was saying.
Maybe because he doesn't speak with words.
Maybe because he's 13 months old.
Yes, boys and girls...up to the plate crawls Abe, all 30 inches and 23 pounds of him.
Through his spokesman Michael Diesenhoff, who doubles as Abe's father and ESPN's college football studio producer, the little Bristol baby is refusing comment.
Papa Diesenhoff would only reveal a hint of Abe's strategy.
"I showed him a Gator logo and he got scared. He likes playing with Ducks. And his favorite color is orange."
Well, gee, I guess ESPN figured they couldn't miss with this kid.
They have one good week and now they think they can just bring in a toddler and beat us poor, Tennessee country folk.
Well, not so fast my friends.
We're gonna try to beat 'em at their own game.
No, we're not picking some little freshman to represent the UT student body.
We're picking someone who works with babies.
The name? Kevin Love.
The job? Daycare worker.
Take that, Bristol.
"I know babies better than that baby," the junior arts and sciences major said. "I'm sure he'll just pick the Ducks and whatever little critter he thinks is cute."
Touche, ESPNers. Touche.
"And what's up with that pick of Kentucky over Florida?" Love asked. "Does this Abraham dude not know the history of that series?"
After intense questioning, spokesman Diesenhoff conceded his son did not know that Florida had beaten UK 16 straight years.
So Papa tried a different strategy with Abe.
Instead of holding up a picture of a gator, he held up one of Ron Zook.
No luck.
The poor baby was frightened even more.
So Kentucky it is.

As for my only slightly less serious picks...
South Carolina at Tennessee: Cranky ol' Lou Holtz went into the Virginia game saying his team had about as good a chance of winning as the stripper running for California governor. The Gamecocks won, 31-7. So if Holtz's boys win at Neyland Saturday, you can be assured Debbie will be doing Dallas at this spring's Oscars.
Prediction: UT, 27-10
Arkansas at Alabama: Since the preseason, I've been telling people Arkansas is underrated. But No. 9 in the country? Since the preseason, I've been telling people 'Bama is going to falter after losing that "us against the NCAA, nothing to lose" attitude. But Northern Illinois?
Prediction: 'Bama, 20-17
Pittsburgh at Texas A&M: What do the hometown papers say when a top 10 team loses early in the season? Eric Hall of the Beaver County Times called Pitt a "sinking ship" with "holes created by tension and egos." Ring a bell?
Prediction: A&M, 23-20
Georgia Tech at Vanderbilt: For all those interested in going to Nashville's concrete morgue this weekend, Vandy's Dean of Athletic Student Affairs would like me to announce there will be a Commodore vs. Yellow Jacket, answer-to-the-death Quiz Bowl at halftime of this Saturday's game. In other news, plans are already underway to immediately add a second paragraph to the bowl history section of the Vandy media guide.
Prediction: Tech, 20-19
Florida at Kentucky: Even though I've learned not to underestimate his stupidity, something tells me Ron Zook can't possibly blow so many points for his team two weeks in a row. If anybody can do it, though, it's the Zookster. Don't you get the feeling this is that guy that gets beat by his 5-year-old son every time they play video game football?
Prediction: Florida, 37-27
Washington St. at Oregon: This has nothing to do with the game, but does anybody know whatever happened to former Cougar quarterback Ryan Leaf? If you do, please let me know so I can settle a bet with a buddy of mine. He wins if it's quarterback in the CFL or Arena Football League. I win if it's bus boy.
Prediction: Wazzu, 34-31

- Brett Edgerton is a senior in journalism. He can be reached at fromtheedge@utk.edu.