Mike Hlas is an award-winning columnist with the Cedar Rapids Gazette and force behind The Hlog. Each week he will break down the biggest mismatches in college football. Mike's task is perhaps more complex than solving global warming considering the increasing number of Bowl Championship Series teams scheduling games against cupcake opponents. These games merely bilk fans out of hard-earned money and cheapen the overall product.
The Miami Hurricanes move into their new football home — 21 miles north of their campus — and this is how they try to draw fans?
The Canes open their Dolphin Stadium era Thursday night by hosting ... Charleston Southern?
Ah, there's nothing like a game of pattycake against a I-AA cupcake to keep an NFL stadium's parking lot empty on the last Thursday of August.
Some bad, bad, bad Week 1 matchups vied to be our initial Game of the Weak. Inexplicably, Chattanooga (2-9 last year) is at Oklahoma on Saturday. But that matchup isn't as much weak as it is sadistic or masochistic, depending on if you're the Sooners or the Moccasins.
Maine is at Iowa. One of the two lost to Stony Brook last year and one of the two lost to Western Michigan.
West Virginia students probably won't even bother to burn their couches after the Mountaineers maul Villanova.
But Charleston Southern? It played a I-A team last year. Its flight to Honolulu was a long one. The flight home was longer after a 66-10 drubbing from Hawaii. The Warriors' star quarterback, Colt Brennan, had a sprained ankle and didn't even play. Good thing. He could have turned the game into a rout.
But the Buccaneers' ultimate indignity was in their season-finale, a home clash with state-rival Coastal Carolina. The Bucs, needing a win for a 6-5 record and fourth winning season in a row, lost 41-2. Their only points came on a return of a blocked-extra point.
Charleston Southern was 1-3 in the Big South, making you wonder just how big the Big South could really be. Virginia Military was 0-4 in league play, leading one to believe Russia would have an easier time trampling Virginia than Georgia.
Charleston Southern plays at Miami (Ohio) in two weeks. That won't be pretty, either. Maybe it should try Miami (Guam). Luckily, the Bucs have upcoming games against the likes of North Greenville and Edward Waters.
As for the Hurricanes, they share in making this the Game of the Weak. They lost their final four games last year, including their Orange Bowl farewell, to finish 5-7.
This is the program that went 46-4 between 2000 and 2003? This is the program that has five national championships? This is NFL U? Playing Charleston Southern for a win to try to help itself go 6-6 and maybe return to the MPC Computers Bowl in Boise for the second time in three years?