The drought has officially ended. Last night the Georgia State Panthers won the first Division 1-A football game of the 2014 season, a 38-37 thriller against Abilene Christian. This is an auspicious beginning to the Fall, but we all know that not every game will be that exciting. Many games will just be OK, and some games will be terrible. (I'm not sure we'll ever see anything as terrible as Auburn at Mississippi State in 2008, but we can always hope.) That's why we attempt to identify each week's National Game of Disinterest, the game that, despite your vow to watch every second of televised football this year, you can safely skip, secure in the knowledge that you're not missing anything worthwhile.
There are quite a few contenders this week. Although the SEC slate is full of intriguing match-ups, there's really only one truly interesting game on the national scene. But one game is worse than all the rest. This game is so bad that even the fans of the participating school's teams probably won't watch, at least not all 60 minutes: Appalachian State at Michigan.
Now, I know what you're thinking: this is a rematch of one of the biggest upsets in college football history, how can I not watch it? But trust me, this game will not wind up the same way.
The 2007 Mountaineers were the pinnacle of Appalachian State's success, finishing 13-2 and winning their third FCS title in as many years. Things haven't been so great for them over the last three years. After disappointing back-to-back 8-4 seasons in 2011 and 2012 (each featuring a first-round playoff loss), Head Coach Jerry Moore was unceremoniously forced into retirement. His successor guided the team to a 4-8 record in 2013, the program's first losing season since 1993. And nothing about this team's roster or its schedule in its first season as an FBS team gives us any reason to expect anything better this year. In fact, SBN stats wizard Bill C. gives Michigan a 99% chance to prevail. This App State team isn't Cinderalla; it's Michigan's 2014 rent-a-win.
As for Michigan, well, Michigan just isn't a fun team to watch. After replacing Rich Rodriguez, Head Coach Brady Hoke has re-installed the same boring B1G offense that got Lloyd Carr fired in the first place. He finally fired OC Al Borges but replaced him with former Alabama OC Doug Nussmeier. Given Nick Saban's well-known penchant for micromanagement (and Bama's blue-chip roster), it's hard to know how much credit to give Nussmeier for Alabama's offensive success, but, even if Nussmeier is an upgrade, it's going to take him some time to undo Borges's mess.
Unless you'll spend this Saturday decked out in maize-and-blue, this game can only disappoint you.