By JOHN P. WISE
One Great Season
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- I'm on the radio in Louisville later today. I think it's 790 AM at about 3:45 p.m. I'll send out exact details later. In the meantime, here are some other nuggets to ponder.
+ I spent the weekend with friends in Columbus. When all the fun ended and everyone parted ways Sunday morning, my boy Erin asked right before leaving: "Are you worried about hitting a wall at any point on this trip?"
"You mean, like, now?" I asked.
Seriously, just two weeks in, I'm starting to realize how huge of a bite I've taken. I'm always exhausted. Only three months left!
+ There's an Italian restaurant here in South Bend called The Volcano. I drove past it on the way home from my own dinner at about 9:45 p.m. Unsurprisingly, there wasn't a car in the lot and all the lights were off. Weak.
+ I think what the OSU-USC game showed the most is that late-game crunch time is far more Pete Carroll time than it is Jim Tressel time.
Carroll's Trojans won Saturday's heavyweight bout in a way that seemed similar to how Tressel's first few teams won in Columbus, including the 2002 squad that scored few points but won all 14 of its games en route to a national championship. USC did just enough to win Saturday, especially late.
+ I think the best game no one's talking about this weekend may very well be in Blacksburg. Virginia Tech welcomes Nebraska to Lane Stadium for what promises to be a hard-hitting Saturday afternoon tilt. I wish I was there instead of here in South Bend, where the Notre Dame athletic department is strict about granting media access to outsiders. I don't even have any kind of mid-week access to player and coach interviews. But there's no access in Blacksburg this weekend either, so it makes sense to go to the school with more history and tradition for me to write about this week.
+ Speaking of media access, I got my credential request approved for USC's game at Cal on Oct. 3. If the Golden Bears can get a win at Oregon the week before, then both teams should be 4-0 and ranked among the top six in the country. And I'll be on the sideline for all of it.
+ It's possible I might see the Trojans play three times this year. I'm hopeful to get a credential for the USC-UCLA game on Nov. 28. I've drank the Matt Barkley-flavored Kool-Aid, and I think that would be pretty cool if the talented freshman led USC to a perfect regular season and a berth in the BCS Championship game.
+ Odd crowd here at the Quality Inn in South Bend. Looks like an assembly of Amish construction workers. Those who aren't rockin' the beard and simple clothing are sporting muscle Tees, mustaches and John Deere caps.