Failed TV shows sound a lot like major university

The pilot

Everybody is talking about opening weekend in the NFL, the beginning of college footballor the start of the new semester system at the University.
But what about the new television season? The upcoming season is highlighted with new shows like “Freaks and Geeks,” “The West Wing” and “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.” Not to mention Heather Locklear’s addition to the cast of Spin City.
The Daily was sent some videotapes of some of the shows that didn’t make it with the networks, and we were surprised to see so many shows with connections to the University.
Here’s a partial list of would-be, must-see hits:

“Everybody Gets Paid to Love Rufus”
An outlandish show based on the premise that Rufus, a high-ranking official at a major university, gets put in charge of teaching male athletes to conduct themselves responsibly when interacting with women.
One heart-warming episode that will highlight the season is the season-ending cliffhanger. Rufus expresses concern when the University’s Program Against Sexual Violence wants to bring in a group to come in for yearly sexual violence awareness training. Rufus’ concern was the $8,000 price tag the training would cost.

“Continually Losin'”
This spin-off of the never-popular “Suddenly Susan” introduces us to a former drug enforcement agent who travels to Minnesota to take over the struggling women’s program at a major university. This, of course, is a comedy.
Taking over a team that was 4-24 (1-15 in the Big Ten) the year before, the lead character, L.J., promptly leads the squad to a 4-23 (1-15) record in her first year.
The miracle turnaround continues in L.J.’s second year as the team win’s twice as many conference games en route to a 7-20 (2-14) finish.

“Chicago Hope”
This docu-drama features the story of the Gophers men’s basketball team and their trip to the Big Ten tournament at the United Center in Chicago.
The new coach and his squad will have some problems putting the ball in the ol’ peach basket this year, so look for a lot of 49-45 games in conference play.
Many of those low-scoring affairs will probably find the Maroon and Gold on the losing end. Thus, the only hope for the rookie coach and his new team to reach the postseason (barring the season-long subplot of NCAA sanctions) is to win the Big Ten tournament in Chicago and earn the automatic berth.

“Touched by Himself”
The show revolves around a football player and his inability to get any work done while his tutor attempts to penetrate the distracted athlete’s mind with academia.
The plot thickens when the two are sitting at a computer and the would-be student gets confused when the tutor tells him to click the mouse. The player misunderstands her, and clicks on something else entirely.

“Campbellsville 42718”
A hybrid of “Beverly Hills 90210” and “The Beverly Hillbillies.”
A former basketball coach at a major university-turned farmer and his family leave Minnesota for a new life in this Podunk town in Kentucky.
Farm animals, knee replacements and a nemesis named Jan are all obstacles in the simple farmer’s attempt to rebuild his life. Much like Jed Clampett striking oil out in the swamp, a $1.5 million buyout from a major university helps the farmer and his family adjust to the new surroundings.
The theme song serves as the highlight of the show.
“This here’s a story about a man named Clem, his player’s didn’t study so Jan did the work for them.
“Then one day Jan was speakin’ to the Press, and Clem and his program became quite a mess.”

Michael Dougherty covers football and welcomes comments at [email protected]