This football season is definitely getting away very rapidly, and I guess that us fans of the Commodores should be looking forward to the pain going away. That is generally not the case with us true fans, and believe me, we have seen worse. Sure, we became a little spoiled over the past three years, and now we have to hope that another turnaround can happen much more quickly than the last. Derek Mason has a lot to prove as a head coach.

Don't get me wrong, I haven't completely given up on this team, but the road ahead looks a little rough as we will have to beat the Mississippi State Bulldogs in Starkville. That game should be the toughest that we have left, but at this stage there are no gimmies. Still, even if the worst happens, I have lived to see the Commodores win in consecutive seasons over the Volunteers.  That's a really good thing.

Bad things keep being mentioned about the Florida State program and their relationship with the Tallahassee police department. Jimbo Fisher continues to be an enabler and he apparently doesn't realize that the way he is handling this is not good for anyone including the student athletes.

Also less than positive stories have surfaced this past week about athletics at the University of Tennessee. More facts need to be brought to light before judgment can be made on the handling of those situations. Yes, I am totally aware of what is going on in Nashville with four former Vandy football players. The key word in that sentence is "former."  Vandy isn't above having problems, but they are usually dealt with swiftly and harshly. Being a good athlete does not merit special treatment legally.

Of course there are many instances out there of the good being done by college and professional athletes. Sadly, those don't seem to strike the media as being as newsworthy as the bad.

Auburn continues to be the recipient of the most good luck in the country. It has apparently carried over from last year, but it will definitely end in the Iron Bowl. I look for them to receive a real thrashing at the hands of the Crimson Tide.

Was the dismantling of Georgia enough to keep Will Muschamp at the helm of the Florida Gators? The Commodores should get their fourth win of the season as they host the reptiles this weekend. 

Mr. Gale has probably had a hard time containing his elation since the win at South Carolina. Why doesn't he ever mention his once beloved Maryland Terrapins?  After all, they pulled off a big win against James Franklin and the Nittany Lions. He has a week to savor his win, and it looks like Josh Dobbs will remain their quarterback as Justin Worley faces surgery. He has certainly done nothing to cost him the job.

Has NASCAR become a joke or what? It gets sillier every weekend. It looked to me like Jeff Gordon bumped  Keselowski rather than the opposite. They all need to keep racing and stay away from MMA.

Let's all have another great week and remember that a friendly smile keeps the cold away.

Go Panthers! Go Jets! Go USA!

(Jim Butler is a Chronicle correspondent and his column appears regularly.)