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Clayton Picks All the Games Correctly: Week 3: The Yacht Rock Edition

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Cincinnati Beats Houston, proceeds to listen to smooth music.

Holiday Season On The French Riviera Amid Heightened Security Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Big win for the Bearcats last Saturday. Had a few big wins m’self last Saturday.

Week 2 Record: 6-10

Season to Date: 16-16

In this edition of “Clayton Picks All the Games Correctly,” the Miss Cleo of College Football has solicited the prognosticating skills of Tony Mastodon, a longtime friend of DTD and the funniest man on twitter.

If you scroll down to my pick for the Georgia State-Wisconsin game, the Mastodon offers his analysis of the college fight songs that are the closest to Yacht Rock. For the uninitiated, Yacht Rock is the subject of the greatest mockumentary series of all time and a term that the series’ creators coined to described a subgenre of smooth music that dominated top 40 radio between the mid-1970s and mid-1980s. Yacht Rock is expertly played, slickly produced smooth music indigenous to the era’s LA studio scene. It is jazzy and soulful but neither jazz nor soul. It is Michael McDonald. It is Kenny Loggins. It is Steely Dan’s Gaucho album. It is Toto’s “Rosanna.” With the help of the Mastodon, we unearth the yachtiness of a number of college football’s best known fight songs.

Our Game:

#6 Houston (2-0) at Cincinnati (2-0): Nippert Stadium is going to be loud and proud on Thursday night. We are going to eat up the Cougars’ defense with a heaping helping of Boone and Green, both running the ball and in the short passing games. The Bearcats are going to hang onto the ball and hang on for a close win.

Final Score: Cincinnati 24 Houston 21 UPSET OF THE WEEK

The Rest of the AAC:

Temple (1-1) at Penn State (1-1): “Why don’t seagulls live on bays? Because then they’d be bagels!” – Guy who sat next to me on the Greyhound Bus last Thursday night.

Final Score: Penn State 35 Temple 31

Kansas (1-1) at Memphis (1-0): “What vegetables do baby birds like the best? Chick peas.” –Same guy, five minutes later.

Final Score: Memphis 44 Kansas 24

Virginia (0-2) at UConn (1-1): To quote from the September 1989 issue of Ranger Rick: “Musk is a skunk’s only real weapon. But it’s a powerful one! The musk is so stinky that people can smell it downwind two miles away. Because skunks have such a good defense, they don’t have to worry too much about getting attacked.”

Final Score: Virginia 22 UConn 14

North Carolina A&T (2-0) at Tulsa (1-1): A sister and brother from Tulsa come into possession of a gold mine but are attacked and driven off by a gang of thieves. I believe one of them fellers was from Arkansas.

Final Score: Tulsa 47 NC A&T 25

USF (2-0) at Syracuse (1-1): Syracuse markets itself as “New York’s University.” They’ve got some new video promoting this idea built around Jay-Z’s “We Run New York” hook. Syracuse does not run New York. Vincent K. McMahon does. And Vincent K. McMahon takes a limousine to the St. Regis Hotel every Thursday to get a $1000 haircut. Does Jim Boeheim ever do that? No, he doesn’t. Bald men are not allowed to get $1000 haircuts at the St. Regis Hotel. Hulk Hogan has been turned away at the door at least 20 times, brother.

Final Score: USF 35 Syracuse 24

ECU (2-0) at South Carolina (1-1): It can get hot on a fall afternoon in the bleachers of Williams-Brice Stadium. It is best to be prepared, so I’ve included Miss Cleo’s top five home remedies for Sunburn: 1) change your toothbrush 2) “Sun’s out, Guns out” 3) witch hazel 4) put on some aftershave 5) get a good night’s sleep.

Final Score: South Carolina 41 ECU 34

Maryland (2-0) at UCF (1-1): Worms are 14% protein by weight.

Final Score: Maryland 34 UCF 22

Navy (2-0) at Tulane (1-1): Whenever I sing the Chiffons’ “He’s So Fine,” I turn the “do-lang, do-lang, do-lang, do-langs” into “Tulane, Tulane, Tulane, Tulane.” Conversely, George Harrison turned “He’s So Fine” into “My Sweet Lord” and found himself smack dab in the middle of a copyright infringement suit. (Note that extensive commentary on Navy’s fight song will be included in my pick for the Georgia State-Wisconsin game).

Final Score: Tulane 33 Navy 27

Liberty (1-1) at SMU (1-1): I am a big fan of SMU football and a big fan of having something nice to eat during their games. I think a nice bourbon glazed ham with peaches goes well during an SMU game and When I want a nice bourbon glazed ham with peaches during an SMU game, I preheat the oven to 325. Then I drink a gallon of chocolate milk. Then I marinate some peaches in bourbon for 20 minutes. I add sugar, mustard, relish, clamshells, and hot dog buns. Then I leave the stove on while I drive to Kroger’s to buy 5 pounds of deli ham and I come home and I pour all of this hot stuff into the garbage and let it stink up the house for about five days. THE END.

Final Score: SMU 49 Liberty 7

The Rest of the Country:

Georgia State (0-2) at #9 Wisconsin (2-0): Tony Mastodon and I got talking about which college fight songs are closest to the slick, soulful, and smooth sounds of Yacht Rock. I suggested that “On Wisconsin” bears a slight resemblance to Kenny Loggins and Steve Perry’s vamping-laden duet “Don’t Fight It.” The Mastodon disagreed respectfully and offered an assessment of the yachtiness of some well-known college fight songs.

“On, Wisconsin” (Wisconsin)

The Beach Boys are not Yacht Rock, because they’re not smooth. They can be casual, they can be laid back, they can even be ethereal, but never smooth. They might own yachts, but they aren’t smooth. The Beach Boys referenced “On, Wisconsin” in their mega-hit “Be True to Your School,” which they played with Uncle Jesse on Wake Up, San Francisco! Wisconsin is even less smooth. (Truth be told, I’m a Budzilla man). The Mastodon used to live in Wisconsin when he had a job working as a Chippendale in Chippewa Falls. While the Mastodon is a smooth, handsome man, the local workers at (blech) Leinenkugel’s didn’t tip very well..

“Rocky Top” (Tennessee)

Quintessentially smooth, like the wet, rocky face of the mountain in the song. It’s about moonshining, which is hip and smooth. I don’t think many land-locked states have similarly smooth music for a fight song. Plus, murderous moonshining hillbillies are surprisingly smooth customers.

“Victory for MSU” (Michigan State)

Nope.

“Fight, Fight, Fight for Iowa” (Iowa)

Not, not, not on a Yacht. Repetitive, overwrought, and strangely derivative of the work of Deep Purple, Iowa has a paltry effort for a fight song. It no sooner would rouse the Mastodon to victory than the Mastodon’s 17th Michelob Ultra Budzilla. The Mastodon doesn’t mess around. You know what’s smooth about Iowa? Nothing. It’s all furrows of corn on big swirly hills and windmills. The wind ain’t meant to be electric, man. It’s just the wind. Tear down that windmill and fill your sails with air.

“Fight, Raiders, Fight” (Texas Tech)

Yacht Rock is a surprisingly earnest genre. Yachters need to be true to themselves and to others, to mean what they say. I don’t recall the last time that Texas Tech has fought. Hell, the lyrics even suggest that you get a 15 yard unsportsmanlike after you “hit ‘em high/hit ‘em low.”

“The Victors” (Michigan)

Look at Scott Steiner. Does he look smooth to you? That silly part in the middle is too extravagant for Yacht Rock. Your flourishes should be at the start, like Steely Dan’s “Peg.” Harbaugh probably thinks that Styx is Yacht Rock, and he looks like an unhappy duck with his stupid face and pants. Smooth ducks aren’t unhappy all the time.

“War Chant” (FSU)

The only thing less cool than singing Paul Revere and the Raiders’ “Indian Reservation.” I’ll pass.

“Anchors Aweigh” (Navy)

Yeah, this one is pretty Yacht Rock. It’s got a good maritime tradition, but I don’t think that the Navy is really yachty. There’s a kind of staid notion of duty here, which leads me to look elsewhere. True Yacht Rockers prefer “Semper Paratus,” the Coast Guard Academy’s smooth ballad to the real heroes of the sea. “Through surf and storm and howling gale,” I’d rather have the Coast Guard looking after my maritime interests in littoral green waters than some blue-water nuke jockey. The Merchant Marines are poseurs.

“Hold That Tiger”

So smooth that Auburn, LSU and Clemson (and I’m sure some other schools too) play it as a favorite. Probably the smoothest kind of fight song. You’re down at the marina and some Divorcecore enthusiasts come after you with their new leather jackets and Harley Davidson motorcycles. Fighting off this sea of dads wouldn’t be a challenge for the Mastodon, but my friends will often “Hold that Tiger” back from mauling a Biker Dad Harambe-style.

“The Minnesota Rouser” (Minnesota)

Nyacht rock. It sounds smooth, particularly when the Mastodon, Goldy Gopher, and the Dentistry School Class of 2017 have been pounding some Michelob Budzillas at Stadium Village institution Stub and Herb’s. Seriously. During my grad school days, the Mastodon would arise from his slumber at the crack of 11, get on the No. 4 bus (we didn’t have no light rail, you wimps) drink Stub and Herb’s dry, then riot our way down Washington Ave and lay siege to the Metrodome. Well, most weeks we decided not to, because we wanted to catch the Vikings game the next day, but one time we set this dumpster on fire outside of Valspar. Anyway, they had to get a new stadium, because the smoothness of our music blew a hole in the roof. I’m pretty sure that’s how it happened. Honestly, it’s been a few years. The new stadium is great, because you can yell really loud and wake up those jerks who live over near the Witch Hat. Never liked anyone from that neighborhood. They seem like the kind of people who like the Jucy Lucy at 5-8 Club instead of Matt’s. (Lengthy explanation of Minnesota food culture redacted).

“Down, Down the Field” (Syracuse)

Why does Syracuse have to be such a downer? You’re the only D-I school in New York that anybody cares about. It’s the most milquetoast of fight songs, and not even partly laid back. Strong recommendation to go on Spotify and listen to “Syracuse Orange Roll with It” by Powersurge. It’s like the Undertaker’s early 2000’s theme, but with Syracuse.

“That’s how we roll.

The Orange are gonna knock you out.

You’re running with the big boys now.

The Orange are gonna strike you down.

That’s how we roll.

That’s how we roll.”

Powersurge apparently has done this for a bunch of other terrible schools too, all with the same Underfaker music. Here are some examples.

Virginia

“That’s how we roll.

Cavaliers gonna knock you out.

You’re running with the big boys now.

Cavaliers gonna strike you down.

That’s how we roll.

That’s how we roll.”

Alabama

“That’s how we roll.

Crimson Tide gonna rock this house

You’re running with the big boys now.

Crimson Tide gonna strike you down.

That’s how we roll.

That’s how we roll.”

Cincinnati

“That’s how we roll.

Bearcats gonna knock you out.

You’re running with the big boys now.

Bearcats gonna strike you down.

That’s how we roll.

That’s how we roll.”

Final Score: Wisconsin 54 Georgia State 13

#2 Florida State (2-0) at #10 Louisville (2-0): Anytime Bobby Petrino opens his mouth, it reminds me of Walter Brennan singing “Old Rivers.”

Final Score: Lamar Jackson 45 Florida State 28

#1 Alabama (2-0) at #19 Ole Miss (1-1): Alabama was the first state to officially declare Christmas a holiday.

Final Score: Alabama 17 Ole Miss 13

#12 Michigan State (1-0) at #18 Notre Dame (1-1): Great College Football nickname: Billy “The Menonimee Meteor” Wells, Michigan State running back, 1950-1953. Even “The Menonimee Meteor” wouldn’t save the Spartans this weekend. Notre Dame remains spitting mad after that opening weekend loss to the Texas Longhorns.

Final Score: Notre Dame 38 Michigan State 20

#3 Ohio State at #14 Oklahoma (1-1): If you have a favorite dish to pass on to the readers here at Down the Drive, send me a message on twitter and I might make use of it in my pick ‘em column next week.

Final Score: Oklahoma 35 Ohio State 24

USC (1-1) at #7 Stanford (1-0): “I been saving belly button lint since ’98. For Christmas, my Aunt Becky’s gonna darn me up a sweater from it” – that guy from the Greyhound Bus, as we pulled into Palo Alto, California.

Final Score: Stanford 28 USC 21

As always, this is a work of parody and not intended to be taken seriously. For more of the same, look me up on twitter: @ClaytonTrutor