Tampa VI: SOC - Mississippi State
Let Tommy Cook. That's how I see this game. That's what I told people tonight when they asked me about this game. All I see when I see this game: Tommy DeVito.
I have no idea why that is. I've always said that the Stream Of Consciousness is just a livestream of the things I"m thinking about the night before the game, and the thing I'm thinking about tomorrow is Tommy DeVito. I have no idea why, but my thoughts are nearly 100% Tommy.
Perhaps it's because this is his final college game. Maybe it's because it wasn't until after the season that I realized just how solid his statline was. Maybe we should go through that. Tommy DeVito's season statistics:
I'm guessing all four of those stats are the best Illini QB stats since Nathan Scheelhaase in 2013. Actually, let's look that up together.
2021 Peters - 53.85%, 1,170 yards, 7 TD, 4 INT
2020 Peters - 48.75%, 429 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
2019 Peters - 55.37%, 1,884 yards, 18 TD, 8 INT
2018 Bush - 53.92%, 1,413 yards, 6 TD, 10 INT
2017 George Jr - 51.93%, 1,273 yards, 7 TD, 10 INT
2016 Lunt - 54.74%, 1,376, 8 TD, 3 INT
2015 Lunt - 56.13%, 2,761, 14 TD, 6 INT
2014 Lunt - 63.22%, 1763, 14 TD, 3 INT
2013 Scheelhaase - 66.74%, 3,272, 21 TD, 13 INT
So yeah, of those 10 seasons, here's where DeVito's 2022 numbers rank:
69.9% completion percentage - 1st
2,397 passing yards - 3rd behind 2013 Scheelhaase and 2015 Lunt (with one game to go)
15 TD - 2nd behind 2019 Peters
4 INT - 3rd behind 2014 and 2016 Lunt
When you get your top quarterbacking performance in a decade, and when that quarterback gets one more game, and when that game happens without your All American tailback because he opted out for the draft... that just points to a monster game from that quarterback, right? I just feel like this is a "monster game from Tommy" game and that's that.
(I'm typing this in the hotel room while my wife is asleep. I'm trying to tap on the keys so very lightly but I just woke her up with too much space bar. I feel bad about this but there's too many people in the lobby so I can't go write there. I really need to wrap this up for her sake.)
I'm excited to get to see this team one more time. I'm very excited to see what the young guys in the secondary (like Matt Bailey and Xavier Scott) can do with a starting role. I want to see 100% healthy Josh McCray get back to being 100% healthy Josh McCray. I have no idea why (shouldn't I be worried that our three best players aren't going to play?), but I'm super confident about tomorrow. I think we Let Tommy Cook and he leads us to a big win.
Illinois 35, Mississippi State 17