About Last Weekend: Cam Goes Marching In

Cam NewtonIn case you were out living a life of leisure, here’s what you missed in sports over the weekend.

  • A referee was pulled from the Panthers-Saints game when his Facebook profile revealed that he was a Saints fan, and Cam Newton’s 324 yards of total offense led the Panthers to a 35-27 win. The referee in question was assigned instead to Monday night’s Broncos-Falcons game, though NFL lawyers are checking whether that would violate a restraining order issued three years ago when he bit Matt Ryan’s leg at a charity event.
  • Eli Manning threw for 510 yards and three touchdowns as the Giants rallied for a 41-34 win over the Buccaneers, while Tom Coughlin confronted Bucs coach Greg Schiano about a perceived cheap shot to Manning on the game’s final play. “Cheap shot?!” yelled Schiano. “That ran me $1,000 per player! Double that for the moral ones!”
  • Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed a 42-yard field goal on the second-to-last play of the game, handing the Cardinals a 20-18 win. In related news, Rob Gronkowski was viciously knocked over 65 times. “OK, fine, we pulled off the jersey switch,” said Gostkowski after the game. “But at what cost, Rob? At what cost?!
  • Josh Nunes threw a game-winning 37-yard touchdown to Zach Ertz as no. 21 Stanford upset no. 2 USC 21-14, beating the Trojans for the fourth straight year. In response to the loss, USC head coach Lane Kiffin threw down his clipboard, stormed up to his father (legendary defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin), and shouted, “Daddy, make them win! Make the dumb men win!” The elder Kiffin tried to reason with him, but Lane kept screaming until his mother came down from the stands, hugged him, and shot an accusatory look at her husband. “Wait, what did I do?” he asked, but Lane pouted and said, “Daddy’s mean, mommy!” She nodded and patted his head, and asked Monte why he couldn’t just make them win and make his son happy for once. “That’s not how football works,” he attempted to explain, but she glared at him in a way that implied he would have found a way if he were a better father. “I want a lolly, mommy!” Lane yelled, and to keep him from shrieking, she took a lollipop out of her purse and unwrapped it for him. Monte tried to reason with both of them, but Lane’s mother said simply, “Let’s leave Daddy alone if he loves his football men so much more than us.” And as she carried her son away, Lane mouthed “I hate you” to his father as he threw the lollipop to the ground and screamed for a different flavor.
  • Quarterback Jeff Driskel led Florida to 24 unanswered points as the no. 18 Gators beat no. 23 Tennessee 37-20 in Knoxville. Well, that’s not completely fair; Tennessee fans did answer all those points by drooling on themselves.
  • No. 20 Notre Dame is off to its best start in 10 years after a dominant 20-3 road win over no. 10 Michigan State. In the Vatican, the cardinals confronted Pope Benedict XVI, who held a tiny spartan doll stuffed full of needles. “OK, fine, the voodoo worked,” they said. “But at what cost, your Holiness? At what cost?! Also, how did you get a piece of Mark Dantonio’s hair and fingernail?”
  • Jon Jay’s RBI double sparked a three-run 12th inning, and the Cardinals held on for a 5-2 win over the Dodgers in a battle of NL wild-card hopefuls. And now, Terrence the Grantland Robot: “DID YOU MEAN JOHN JAY, THE FIRST CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT?” Sorry, I forgot that Terrence’s artificial intelligence was removed as a temporary punishment for getting too drunk this weekend, and now he basically functions like a more annoying Google.
  • Brad Keselowski outdueled Jimmie Johnson to win at the Chicago Speedway, and now leads the Sprint Cup chase after one race. But you know what they say about the Sprint Cup: “If you lead after one/buy a knife, not a gun/take a stab when you’re hot/but you ain’t got a shot.” Actually, now that I’m reading it again, I still don’t know what that means.
  • Russell Martin’s three-run home run led the Yankees to a 6-4 victory over the Rays and 2-1 series win that keeps them atop the AL East by a single game. Back in Tampa, fans agreed that the situation was critical, and that they would definitely have to look up the score later this week.
  • NHL owners and players failed to reach a labor agreement by the deadline, and the two sides are now officially in a lockout. “Not a big deal,” said commissioner Gary Bettman. “Been through it before. I’ve been locked out of my house a bunch of times. You just throw a rock through one of your windows, climb in, and voilà. Problem solved. Sure, you get some scrapes from the glass, a little blood on the carpet, and maybe a neighbor calls the cops, but at least you’re in your own house eating spoonfuls of pesto instead of sobbing by the door. Wait, what were we talking about?”

Filed Under: About Last Weekend, Arizona Cardinals, Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers, Eli Manning, Los Angeles Dodgers, Michigan State, Nascar, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Yankees, NHL, NHL Lockout, Notre Dame, St. Louis Cardinals, Stanford, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tampa Bay Rays, USC

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Shane Ryan is a contributing writer for Grantland. His book about the young stars of the PGA Tour will be published by Random House in early 2015.

Archive @ ShaneRyanHere