By this time in the season, I've usually posted my thoughts on the off-season, some predictions on how things will end up, what the storylines of the year will be, and my picks for the first week of games.
But I'm doing something different this year.
I don't know if it's because we never really had an offseason to process all that 2009 was - we jumped right into big-time coaching changes, then there was the whole conference switcharoo that sent everyone running for the dramamine, then the NCAA cracking down on everything in sight. Or maybe it's my evolving view of the sport and what I enjoy about it.
I used to really get into the arguing and continuous cycles of subjective banter that filled webpages, tv's, and living rooms. Part of this was because I wanted to try to bring some balance or order to things, injecting objectivity and raw data (and tables, of course,) where I could. Part of it was because I love that you can argue things about college football that you can't with other sports because of the subjective nature of its championship. And I still love that about the sport. But damn, it can get tiring going around and around, can't it?
That's why this long weekend, for the first round of contests, I'm going to try to ignore everything except the games.
No conference races.
No Heisman talk.
No BCS predictions.
In general, no big-picture analysis.
This weekend it's about taking short-term view, focusing on the little things. It's just about the games.
I'll be back next week with the first set of rankings, and we'll be taking a lot of time to break down the conference shifts and what they mean in the big scheme of things. And undoubtedly there will be controversies and issues that pop up from week to week that need dissecting. But we'll have plenty of time for those things later. For now, it's time to relish the fact that the clocks are ticking again.