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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Week 3 Predictions

Better late than never!  The first two weeks of college football have been wild.  With some rivalries ending (Notre Dame v. Michigan) and new ones beginning (Penn State v. Rutgers), as well as the BCS finally passing away...

 No word on what was done with the BCS computers....

It's out with the old and in with the new!

The Power Five conferences have been granted autonomy by the NCAA to vote on their own to make changes to how they run college football.  What does this mean?  Nothing yet, but it could lead to the Big 5 paying players, It also means that not all 351 Division 1 schools are created equal.  The schools with major revenue sports, ie football and basketball, now have autonomy to do as they please for the most part.  The NCAA only granted this autonomy because the Big 5 threatened to leave the NCAA altogether, which would've made the NCAA as relevant to college athletics as Trixter is to rock n' roll.

The College Football Playoff, or CFP, has replaced the BCS.  So who replaces the computers you ask?  Well, that would be a, you guessed it, Selection Committee!!
These highly qualified inviduals + Ty Willingham will determine what 4 SEC teams get to play for the national title.

Ok, let's be real, the committee might try to sneak a Pac 12 school or Florida State into the mix, but really that's about it.

And before you say... but the Big Ten!!  Did you watch OSU get beat by 2 touchdowns at home by VA Tech?  Or Michigan get crushed by Notre Dame 31-0?  Or Sparty get manhandled by Oregon 46-27?  Or Wisconsin blow a second half lead to LSU by giving up 15 unanswered points in the 4th quarter to lose 28-24?  Or Penn State... wait, Penn State is still a few years away from competing for anything.

So yeah, the SECFP brought to you by ESPN.  And yes, ESPN has literally a BILLION reasons to promote the SEC now.

Enough about ESPN's SEC bias... let's talk some football!!!

Top 25 Action 

Wyoming @ #2 Oregon - If haven't seen Nike University, aka University of Oregon's, new football facility, it's worth a look. If you don't have time, I'll just show you the best part...
This would be awesome if not for the cameras watching me deuce. 

... video games in the bathroom!  Every teenage boys dream!  Aside from this of course...
"It was THIS big!"

The Heisman Hype is in full swing for Ducks star QB Marcus Mariota.
Marcus Mariota
Aside from being hyped as a potential #1 pick in next year's NFL draft, Mariota is also trying to accomplish what no Ducks QB has done before, that is a National Championship.  The Ducks took on their biggest challenge in the young season last weekend in Eugene.

Against the reigning Big Ten champs Michigan State, the Ducks found themselves down 27-18 early in the 3rd quarter... and then the Ducks exploded....
Sparty ended with, uh, "egg" on their faces after giving up 28 unanswered points getting blown out 46-27.

Wyoming is 2-0, but only averaging 17 points per game against, well, let's just say their opponents could use some Viagra.  The Cowboys are 115th in points per game, 99th in rushing and 95th in passing, so at least they're consistently bad on offense.  Their D is ranked 20th in points allowed, but they have not seen anything like the Ducks offense.

63-10 Oregon

Southern Miss @ #3 Alabama - Bama had a bit of a scare in week 1 as West Virginia gave them everything they can handle before putting up a 33-23 win.  Week 2 was a cakewalk against Florida Atlantic 41-0.  After AJ McCarron, and his mom Dee Dee,
Dee Dee McCarron
have moved on to the NFL, the Tide's QB situation is unsettled.  Both Senior Blake Sims and Florida State transfer Jake Coker have seen action, but neither has distinguished themselves as of yet. Fortunately both QB's have a well established WR that has distinguished himself in Amari Cooper...
Amari Cooper
... who already has 25 receptions for 319 yards and 1 TD through 2 games. HC Nick Saban always has the Tide in the national title picture, but his teams tend to do better with a multi year starter at QB.

After going 12-2 in 2011, Southern Miss has won 2 games in the past 3  years, and only one against an FBS opponent, which was UAB to close out last season and end up with a 1-11 record.  They are one of the worst programs in FBS.

49-0 Roll Tide

Tennessee @ #4 Oklahoma - Vols HC Butch Jones has been killing it in recruiting since he took over at Rocky Top.  He's also been getting into it with opposing coaches...
"No, YOU da man!"
That is Jones having a friendly conversation with former Tennessee assistant and current Arkansas State assistant Trooper Taylor.

Jones' 2015 class had a whopping 32 recruits, ranking as the #4 class in the nation, but 3rd in the SEC.  Those youngsters are seeing action too, as Tennessee played 21 freshman in week 1 against Utah State.  Senior QB Justin Worley is enjoying is new toys.  He threw 10 TD's all of last season and already has 5 through two games this season. The Kids will face their toughest test yet as they head to Norman to take on the Sooners and their explosive offense.

Lead by Sophomore QB Trevor Knight, a dual threat QB, the Sooners are averaging 50 points per game.  Granted their schedule has been softer than Charmin thus far, but 50 points is still 50 points.  And in case you're wondering, yes, the Blake Bell, aka the Belldozer, is back for what seems like his 10th year in Norman, but is now playing TE.
 We'll see how the kids handle their first big road game.

45-31 Oklahoma

#6 Georgia @ #24 South Carolina - The Gamecocks got smashed at home by Texas A&M in week 1...

... enduring a 52-28 beat down.  They rebounded with a lackadaisical 33-23 win against East Carolina in week 2.  HC Steve Spurrier's defense has been abysmal in it's first two games.  And now they face a Bulldogs offense that hung 45 on Clemson to start their season.

After destroying Clemson, Georgia had a bye week so this is only their second game of the season.  So are the Bulldogs as good as they looked against Clemson?  Is South Carolina as bad as they've looked in their first two games?  Could this be the year HC Mark Richt finally breaks through in the SEC and gets Georgia into the national championship?

South Carolina will have to find a way to contain RB Todd Gurley, who Hershel Walker considers the best back in college football.

That's high praise for the Junior RB.

34-24 Georgia

Rice @ #7 Texas A&M - As mentioned above, Texas A&M destroyed South Carolina in week 1.  Week 2 was the annual cupcake game, as the Aggies beat up on poor helpless Lamar 73-3.

Which begs the question, should these games even be allowed?  Granted Lamar got a nice pay day to take a beating...
... but it's a glorified exhibition game.  Then again... you never know when Appalachian State v. Michigan might happen again.

Now that Johnny Football is riding the bench in Cleveland, and Jerry Jones lusts after him like a teenage boy, the Aggies are lead by Sophomore QB Kenny Hill...
Rice is not a good team.  They might be one of the worst in FBS but will win some games due to a schedule that's one of the easiest in the nation. A&M should be 6-0 heading into a matchup against current #14 Ole Miss on October 11th.

52-13 Texas A&M

#8 Baylor @ Buffalo - Baylor unveiled McClane Stadium...
their new billion dollar on campus stadium, which is like upgrading from a 1995 Saturn...

... to a Tesla.

No, this kind of Tesla...

The Bears shutout SMU 45-0 and followed that up with their a W against cupcake FCS Northwestern State 70-6.  Is Baylor for real?  We won't know until at least October 4th when they play Texas, who looks to be rebuilding.  If the Bears hold serve their game at Oklahoma on November 4th could determine the Big XII champion and who gets into the playoffs.

Buffalo lost LB Khalil Mack to the NFL and he was pretty much the only pro talent they had.

59-7 Baylor

#9 USC @ Boston College - The Trojans pulled the upset at Stanford last weekend, holding the Cardinal to 10 points and coming up with a sack and strip as the Cardinal were driving in USC territory late in the 4th quarter...

After such an emotional win, the Trojans travel all the way across the country to play a team in Boston College that is not highly regarded.  What does that mean?  You guessed it...

BC is a typical run of the mill average team.  They beat UMass, which is competing for worst team in the FBS, and lost to Pittsburgh, which is always embarrassing. The Eagles have a chance to pull the upset if they can run the ball and avoid turnovers.  Look for USC to come out flat and if the Eagles can get some momentum the Trojans won't enjoy their autumn trip to New England.

And for any USC fans attending, I highly recommend you try some Sam Adams Oktoberfest while in town.  Also good is Great Lakes Oktoberfest and Dogfishhead Punkin Ale.

 But if you really want a treat take a drive to Waterbury, Vermont to visit The Alchemist brewery and indulge in some Heady Topper. You can't find this pretty much anywhere outside of New England and even there it's tough to get, so enjoy it if you can find it.
23-21 Boston College

UL Monroe @ #10 LSU - The Warhawks are undefeated! Ok, so they're 2-0, beating Wake Forest and Idaho by a TD each.  They're led by 4 year starter QB Pete Thomas. Unfortunately he's never thrown more TD's than INT's in a season in any year.  That doesn't bode well as UL-Monroe faces one of the nation's best defenses at LSU.

The Tigers appeared to be headed to 0-1 after being down 24-7 in the middle of the 3rd quarter.  LSU came roaring back with 21 unanswered for a 28-24 win.  They followed that up with a 56-0 drubbing of Sam Houston State.  Sophomore Anthony Jennings has won the QB job over freshman Brandon Harris, but both will play.

The only question in this game is what kind of crazy shit will Les Miles do next?
56-0 LSU

Purdue @ #11 Notre Dame - Did you know Notre Dame has played Purdue every year since 1946?  The Irish lead the series 57-26 with 2 ties.  With all the talk about the Notre Dame v. Michigan rivalry ending because of Notre Dame's new agreement with the ACC, we should note that Notre Dame has many more rivalries than just the Wolverines.

Remember when Notre Dame was pretending they were national title contenders and Manti Te'o was hooking up with fake girlfriends?  Notre Dame's QB in that game was Everett Golson, the same Everett Golson who was kicked out of school for cheating on a test and sat out the 2013 season.  Well, he's back now and the Irish offense looks good again.
Everett Golson
With a win against Western Michigan in week 1, Purdue has already equaled their win total for all of last year which was a dismal 1-11.  HC Darrell Hazell rebuilt Kent State into an 11 win team in 2012 before taking over at Purdue.  He obviously has a huge rebuilding challenge ahead of him in West Lafayette and against better competition than he had in the MAC.  Will he be up to the task?  It certainly won't happen this week.

45-3 Notre Dame

#12 UCLA @ Texas - The Texas Long got their Horns cut off by the Stormin' Mormons of BYU in Austin last week 41-7.

New Texas HC Charlie Strong is trying to revive a program that's been in decline since QB Colt McCoy lead them to the BCS Championship game in 2010 where they lost to 'Bama.  Since taking over in Austin, Charlie Strong has dismissed 8 players from the team for a variety of reasons.
HC Charlie Strong asking his team, "WTF are you diong!?" 
This game is being played in Jerryland, aka Cowboy Stadium.  There's a lot to do in Jerryland, watching a game is 2nd on that list..

Couple caught getting it on in Jerryland
Meanwhile the Bruins have 2 wins but have been unimpressive.  They let Virginia back in the game in Week 1 and held on for a 28-20 win.  They then gave up 469 yards to Memphis... MEMPHIS! and were tied at 35 in the 4th quarter before escaping with a 42-35 win.  QB Brett Hundley is a Heisman candidate and as he goes, so goes the Bruins offense.  But it's the D that's been shaky.  Is the Bruins D really this bad?  Are the 'Horns really that bad on both sides of the ball?  Who wins?  You decide...

45-37 UCLA

LA Lafayette @ #14 Ole Miss - Sr. QB Bo Wallace leads the aerial attack of the Rebels, which is the only attack they currently have as their ground game ranks 101st in the nation and their leading rusher has only 48 yards total on the year.

The Ragin' Cajuns, like most Sun Belt teams, are not very good.

52-13 Ole Miss

Army @ #15 Stanford - Stanford snatched defeat from the jaws of victory when QB Kevin Hogan was sacked and fumbled as the Cardinal were deep in USC territory with under 2 minutes left in the game.  The Stanford offense was able to move the ball all game but could never seal the deal.  They came away empty on 7 trips into the USC red zone.  Stanford outgained USC 413-291 but turned it over twice and missed two FG's.  You don't need a Stanford degree to know that adds up to a LOSS.

Army is perpetually undersized because of their recruiting restrictions but the Black Knights ALWAYS play with heart and discipline.  Army is 1-0 after beating Buffalo 47-39 in week 1.  The Black Knights triple option offense attempted only  passes. There's a reason many undersized teams have gone to a spread offense in order to level the playing field, but Army is what it is, and will try to run the ball against anyone.  Unfortunately Stanford is pretty good on D.

45-10 Stanford

#16 Arizona State @ Colorado - The Sun Devils have beat up on some hapless competition the first two weeks, taking down Weber State and New Mexico.  Their version of the pre-season continues this week against a Colorado team that lost to in state rival Colorado State then had to come back from 11 down against a UMass team that still has FCS level talent.  Remember when Colorado was good?
Rashan Salaam Heisman winner
and lucky?
Colorado has not had a winning season since 2006 and has gone 5-17 in the past two seasons combined.  But hey, at least they have a beautiful campus...
48-3 Arizona State

East Carolina @ #17 VA Tech - The Hokies handed OSU HC Urban Meyer his first regular season loss as the Buckeyes HC.  The Hokies lead 21-7 before letting OSU back in it, then responded in a big way with a TD drive right after OSU tied the game and then a pick six as OSU was driving to seal the win.  Texas Tech transfer QB Michael Brewer was efficient, tossing 2 TD's but also 2 INT's.  The VA Tech running game only averaged 3 yards per carry it was the D that stepped up and stuffed OSU's attack.  So will the Hokies suffer an OSU hangover?

East Carolina played South Carolina tough in week 2 but still lost 33-23.  The Pirates never lead, but never let the game get out of hand either. The Hokies pride themselves on D, but if they can create some turnovers, they may just spring the upset and catch Va Tech sleeping.

23-20 East Carolina

UCF @ #20 Missouri - Central Florida came roaring back against Penn State in week 1.  UCF is replacing QB Blake Bortles, the #3 pick in this year's NFL draft. After benching their starting freshman QB Pete DiNovo in the second half their offense came alive.  Backup Sophomore QB Justin Holman lead the Knights to 3 second half TD's, the last one giving UCF a 24-23 lead with 1:13 remaining.  However the UCF D couldn't hold the Nittany Lions in check as they moved into range for the game winning FG.  A valiant effort by the Knights in Dublin, Ireland but a 26-24 loss.

As with most teams so far this season, Mizzou has beat up on some patsies the first couple weeks so it's hard to gauge if they are any good. UCF will pose a more difficult challenge than South Dakota State or Toledo.

31-28 UCF

#21 Louisville @ Virginia - Virginia couldn't get out of it's own way at home against UCLA in week 1. Virginia had 3 turnovers and they were ALL returned for touchdowns!  Despite the three defensive TD's, the Cavs only lost 28-20.  Virginia beat up on Richmond last week 45-13.  So which Virginia team shows up this week?  If Virginia can avoid the turnovers they have a chance against Louisville.

Louisville HC Bobby Petrino, last season wrecking his bike with his mistress on the back of it, then trying to cover it up, then getting fired from Arkansas...
Shit happens
... is back from whence he came.  Petrino was the Cardinals HC in 2003-2007, before bolting for the Atlanta Falcons, whom he subsequently quit on mid season by leaving a note for his players.  Classy.

Louisville dismantled Miami in week 1, then throttled Murray State in week 2.  Which tells us... .nothing really.  So will Louisville challenge for the ACC championship in their first year in the league?  Stay tuned.

34-24 Louisville

Kent State @ #22 Ohio State - As mentioned above, Urban Meyer suffered his first regular season loss as the Buckeyes HC.  The bar was set WAY high for Meyer...

... who has to live up to Jim Tressel in Columbus.  It doesn't help that Meyer is now 1-3 in his last four games with the Buckeyes dating back to last season.  To be fair, the Buckeyes lost star QB Braxton Miller before the season even started.  In his place is freshman JT Barrett, who looks a bit lost out there, especially when asked to throw the ball.  Barrett threw 3 INT's against the Hokies, including the aforementioned pick six in the 4th quarter to seal the game for VA Tech.  It seems Meyer needs a star QB in order for his system to run well.  Dating back to his days at Utah when he had Alex Smith at Utah, then everybody's favorite Non-NFL QB Tim Tebow, and finally Braxton Miller at OSU.  Sans star QB Meyer's teams have been beatable.

Kent State is 0-2 and lost to two teams that are not even close in talent to the Buckeyes. This one will be a cakewalk and a chance for Barrett to get some confidence back.

52-7 Buckeyes

Houston @ #25 BYU - The Cougars embarrassed Texas last week and many are mentioning them as the best team not in a power 5 conference.  Even if BYU goes undefeated, that status likely means they'll be left out of the national title picture.  As an independent, BYU does have a chance to run the table against a soft schedule.  Their are currently zero ranked teams on the Cougars schedule this season.

The other Cougars on the field...
 ... I meant that of the Houston variety.  Houston lost to UTSA... who?  University of Texas - San Antonio Road Runners baby!  The Cougars then beat up on Grambling in week 2.  So yeah, they're not very good.

37-6 BYU

Games of Note

Penn State @ Rutgers - Welcome to the Big Ten Rutgers! To celebrate their wins over Washington State and Howard, the Scarlet Knights gave HC Kyle Flood an extension. Those Rutgers fans hoping for a return of Greg Schiano are none too happy as Rutgers is officially now the Kyle Flood show for the foreseeable future.

Rutgers offense is averaging 39 points per game, but their D is giving up 31.5, including 427 yards to FCS Howard last week.

That doesn't bode well as Penn State star QB Christian Hackenberg has surpassed the 300 yard mark in both his games, including a school record 454 yards against an experience UCF secondary in week 1.  One AFC scout even touts the true sophomore as the best QB in college football. Could he end up being the first QB from the Big Ten drafted in the first round since Kerry Collins?  Yep, you heard that right Big Ten fans.  No big Ten QB has gone in the first round since 1995.  Drew Brees was taken with the first pick of the second round.  Nice try.
Christian Hackenberg
However, Hack is mistake prone, already throwing 4 INT's on the year.  The Nittany Lions ground game is also non-existent thus far.  Leading Rusher Zach Zwinak has only 62 yards and is averaging 2.8 yards per carry.  The PSU offensive line is still suspect in the run game.

And as you may have heard, the NCAA has removed all sanctions from Penn State.  As you might expect the team is pumped up, and new HC James Franklin will use it to his advantage on the recruiting trail, where he's been killing it thus far.

As for this game, if Hack is turnover prone again, especially in the red zone, it's going to be a long night for the Nittany Lions.

23-20 Penn State

Nebraska @ Fresno State - Are you into uni-cycling shirtless?
Well, you my friend are a freak, but to each their own.  Just don't do it here...
Nebraska has cracked down hard on shirtless uni-cycling.
The Huskers nearly shit the bed against McNeese State last week, needing a ridiculous catch and run by Ameer Abdullah to eek out a 31-24 win.
Fresno State is 0-2 and is to defense what Kim Kardashian is to modesty.  The Bulldogs are giving up a whopping 55.5 points per game. It won't get much better this week.

55-13 Nebraska

Miami (OH) @ Michigan - That sound you heard in South Bend last week was Brian Kelly taking a chair to the back of the head of Brady Hoke and Michigan.
Michigan lost 31-0.  Yep, the Wolverines were shut out for the first time ever by Notre Dame.  At least they got revenge against Appalachian State in week 1.

Miami (OH) stinks.

38-7 Michigan

UMass @ Vanderbilt - The Commodores are sorely missing HC James Franklin right now.  They've been outscored 78-10 and are 0-2.  UMass has also given up 71 points, but somehow managed to score 38 against a moribund Colorado team.  Could an SEC team lose to one of the worst MAC teams?  Maybe.

35-32 UMass

Kansas @ Duke - Wait, what?  This is a game that should be held in December and be played on the hardwood.  But since you asked, yes, this is a football game and yes, Charlie Weiss is still the head coach at Kansas and yes, he's still fat.

41-24 Duke

Friday, October 4, 2013

Week 6 Predictions

Week 5 was a busy week in college football and in this writer's home.  Having a newborn really gets in the way of writing a college football blog.

You know what happened to the last guy that tried writing a blog while his wife was changing dirty diapers? 
"My penis is over there, your honor." 
So yeah, I missed a week, sue me.  

Let's talk some football.  

Top 25 Action

Georgia State @ #1 Alabama - The line on this game is 'Bama -55.5.  For those of you non-gamblers out there, that means 'Bama needs to beat GA State by 8 TD's to cover the spread.  The only question is really how long will "Bama HC Nick Saban keep his starters in the game.  This has the potential to be the biggest blow out since the 80's glam rock scene...

I'm not even sure how men get their hair blown out that big.  I also wonder at what point Brett Michaels started going bald and had to resort to the head band.  Lastly, this song still rocks... 
'Bama will be without safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix after he's been suspended indefinitely for a violation of team rules.  An Alabama strength coach was put on leave for allegedly providing money to Dix. For this game, the suspension won't matter, but when can we expect Dix back?  In the SEC, "suspended indefinitely" means "suspended until a tough game", so expect Dix back for the game against LSU on Nov 9th.

55.5 - 0 Roll Tide! 

#2 Oregon @ Colorado - The Ducks average margin of victory thus far is 49 points.  You heard me.  The Ducks are beating teams by an AVERAGE of 49 points!  That's ridiculous.  The Ducks will most likely be without lightning fast RB De'Anthony Thomas as he's currently in a walking boot due to an injured right ankle.  Oregon shouldn't miss him too much as they have way too much firepower on offense for the Buffaloes to handle. 

Speaking of the 80's, the last time the Colorado program was relevant was just about that long ago.  
It was literally a generation ago, 1990 to be exact, Colorado beat Notre Dame 10-9 in the Orange Bowl to claim a national championship. 

59-13 Oregon 

#3 Clemson @ Syracuse - Syracuse plays their first game as a member of the ACC against a Clemson squad making their first trip to up state New York.  Syracuse has knocked off some ranked teams under the dome in the past few seasons...

The Orangemen knocked off WVU in 2011 and up ended Louisville last season.  Could they pull the upset of the season and knock off the Tigers? 

Clemson QB Tajh Boyd has started shaky the past few games but settled in and found his favorite target WR Sammy Watkins for multiple touchdowns.  I can see Clemson starting slow and 'Cuse keeping this game close for a half.  If the Tigers are sloppy they'll be in trouble in front of a fired up 'Cuse crowd.  If Clemson plays like they are capable of, this game won't be close. 

45-24 Clemson

#4 Ohio State @ #16 Northwestern - The Wildcats get dynamic RB Venric Mark...
...back for their biggest game of the season.  Ohio State is riding a 17 game winning streak and looking to win against Northwestern for the 29th time in their last 30 meetings.  ESPN Game Day will be in Evanston for this game, which means all the famous alumni will be back in town for the game.  And by all the famous alumni, I mean this guy... 
Ohio State will get QB Braxton Miller back for this game.  QB Kenny Guiton has more than held his own as the starter in Miller's absence and will be ready to step in should Miller falter.  

The Wildcats average 249.5 yards rushing per game and OSU is only giving up 84 yards rushing.  Something has to give.  This game will come down to Northwestern's ability to stop Braxton Miller from running wild.  If they can contain him they can keep it close.  

Despite the hype, I don't see this game being that close. 

45 - 24 Ohio State 

#15 Washington @ #5 Stanford - We're going to find out in the next 3 weeks if Washington is a contender or pretender as they face #5 Stanford, #2 Oregon and #22 Arizona State in consecutive weeks. If UW goes 3-0 they'll be in the top 10 and a potential national title contender. If UW can go 2-1 against that schedule they'll be in the thick of things in the PAC 12.  If they go 1-2 a mid tier bowl is their most likely destination.  If they 0-3 HC Steve Sarkisian may take another look at that USC job that just opened up.  

Stanford will be out to get revenge for a 17-13 loss last season where the Cardinal were held without an offensive touchdown.  QB Kevin Hogan add a dimension to the offense that they didn't have in that game as he's mobile enough to hurt the Huskies with his feet.  

The Cardinal will have to find a way to contain RB Bishop Sankey, one of the best backs in college football. 
Last year the Huskies gave Sankey the ball 40 times and pounded Stanford on the ground.  Huskies QB Keith Price has improved since last season and will be counted on to provide a more balanced offense.  

This should be a great game that may very well come down to the last possession. 

30-27 Washington 

#6 Georgia @ Tennessee - The Bulldogs won an epic contest against LSU last week and are primed for a let down on the road this week. Georgia will be without star RB Todd Gurley and struggled to run the ball with Keith Marshall last week.  QB Aaron Murray has come into his own this season, showing poise and hitting open WR's.  Given the chance, he can pick apart the Vols D.  

On the flip side, the Vols have been in Arrested Development since firing HC Phil Fulmer...

They've lost to both ranked teams they played this year and let Sun Belt foe South Alabama hang around for the entire game last week.  Even though the Vols won 31-24 they didn't have the killer instinct good teams have when playing lesser opponents.  

The Bulldogs have that instinct. 

38-13 Georgia 

#7 Louisville @ Temple - Temple is now 0-4 after losing to perennial FBS cellar dweller Idaho last week. Temple is facing a very real possibility of going 0-12.  Their best shot at a W is against Army or UConn.  The Owls are bad to awful in every aspect of the game.  The fact that now Miami HC Al Golden was actually able to win some games and stabilize that program is nothing short of a coaching miracle.  

This is the type of game where QB Teddy Bridgewater should put up 300 yards and 4 TD's in the first half and relax the second half.  Maybe he can take a tour of Lincoln Financial Field since he may very well be starting for the Eagles next year. 

52-7 Louisville 

#25 Maryland @ #8 Florida State - If you ask Siri who her... his?  its? .. favorite college football team is, this game has your answer...

The Terrapins are 4-0 and are coming off a bye week.  Their 37-0 defeat of WVU looks even better after WVU knocked off Okie State last weekend.  So are the Terrapins contenders in the ACC or is a two horse race between FSU and Clemson for the BCS berth?  

Meanwhile the 'Noles have been steamrolling lesser opponents.  This will be FSU's toughest game so far this season.  QB Jameis Winston could throw his hat into the Heisman ring with a good game, but he may want to save his best game for his meeting with Clemson in a couple weeks. 

As long as FSU doesn't get caught looking ahead, they should win this one comfortably. 

38-17 Seminoles 

#10 LSU @ Mississippi State - LSU hung with Georgia all game and QB Zach Mettenberge played arguably his best game in an LSU uniform but the Tigers came up just short losing 44-41.  Defense was thought to be a strength of the Tigers, but Georgia exposed some flaws both on the ground and through the air.  

The Bulldogs have been up and down all season, beating up on bad teams and losing to good ones.  They beat Troy 62-7 a couple weeks ago and the up and down trend should continue against an LSU squad looking to take out some frustrations.  

45-14 LSU 

TCU @ #11 Oklahoma - The Sooners snapped a 7 game losing streak to the Fightin' Irish last weekend and picked off 3 passes en route to a 35-21 win.  QB Blake Bell seems to have settled into the starting role throwing for 232 yards and 2 TD's and adding 59 more yards on the ground.  The Sooners D did give up 232 rushing yards, including an 80 yard TD.  The Big XII is shaping up to be a 3 way race between Oklahoma, Baylor and Texas Tech.  All of those teams have some flaws and it's possible we have a 3 way or even 4 way tie atop the Big XII come December. 

For now, the Sooners must take care of TCU before facing bitter rival Texas in the Red River Shootout our whatever bullshit PC name they call it now.  

TCU HC Gary Patterson's name has been floated as a possible successor to not-yet-fired but definitely-on-the-hot-seat Texas HC Mack Brown.  Patterson has built the Horned Frogs into a consistent winner even if this year's squad is not quite as good as previous years.  The Frogs have taken care of business against lesser opponents but have yet to score a W against a good team.  Could the Sooners be reveling in their win over Notre Dame and/or looking ahead to Texas?  This has all the makings of a trap game! 

30-27 Horned Frogs

#12 UCLA @ Utah - The Bruins won this game 34-27

Kentucky @ #13 South Carolina - The Wildcats have 1 win and that came against a bad Miami (OH) team.  HC Mike Stoops is putting together nice recruiting class, but he has not put together a nice team on the field this year.  As always, the Wildcat fans are counting the days until basketball season.

The Gamecocks escaped Disney World with a 28-25 win over UCF.  RB Mike Davis proved a he can carry the load on offense, rushing for 167 yards and 3 TD's.  The Gamecocks are beat up, with DE Jadeveon Clowney nursing bruised ribs and QB Connor Shaw uncertain to play with a shoulder injury.

This is the perfect week for a game against Kentucky.
29-13 South Carolina 

Georgia Tech @ #14 Miami - The 'Canes are off to their best start in nearly a decade and are looking to score their 5th consecutive win over the Yellowjackets.  QB Stephon Morris seems to have progressed from erratic to consistent this season.  He played through an ankle injury last week and put up a season high 222 yards and 2 TD's.

The Yellowjackets run HC Paul Johnson's triple option offense but were held to only 160 yards rushing last week by VA Tech in a 17-10 loss.  If Miami's D can limit the damage on the ground, the 'Canes will be 5-0.

27-17 Miami 

WVU @ #17 Baylor - Baylor is AVERAGING 69.7 points per game this season.  You read that right, Baylor is averaging what some NCAA basketball teams can't manage.  Of course, the level of competition has been sub par.  WVU is not exactly known for defense, but at least they're a BCS conference team.

WVU scored a big win against then #11 Okie State last weekend and will look to continue that momentum.  If WVU can win this one, they'll be right in the thick of things for a Big XII title.  Stopping the Bears O is going to be a daunting task for the defensively challenged Mountaineers.

56-31 Baylor 

Arkansas @ #18 Florida - The Gators lost QB Jeff Driskel for the year but that may not be a bad thing as the offense was stagnant with him at the helm.  In steps JR QB Tyler Murphy who can run and throw.  Murphy amassed 192 total yards and 2 TD's in the win against Kentucky, his first career start.  Things get a bit tougher against an Arkansas squad riding a 2 game losing streak.

The Razorbacks have had success running the ball but are dreadful through the air. It will be a long day for Arkansas as Florida boasts one of the best D's in the nation.  Unless Florida completely self destructs, their D should be able to dominate and send Arkansas to their 3rd straight loss.

24-10 Gators 

Minnesota @ #19 Michigan - Michigan's uniforms are one of the most iconic in college football.  With all the alternate uniforms popping up these days, the Wolverines have kept to their tradition of Maize & Blue.  And let's hope offensive lineman Graham Glasgow has no say in designing alternate uniforms...
That dude really likes cats.

After a big win against Notre Dame, Michigan has squeaked by with wins against lesser opponents the past two weeks.  As they begin Big Ten play, QB Devin Gardner will have to show more consistency.  Thus far he's looked like a star at QB and the like he has no business playing QB in the same game.

The Golden Gophers beat up on some crap teams to start the season and lost Iowa, the first decent team they've faced.  The Gophers have no passing game to speak of and will need to get it done on the ground against Michigan.  This game will depend on which Devin Gardner shows up.  If Michigan turns it over and allows Minnesota to hang around it will be a long night in Ann Arbor, but I expect the Wolverines to score the W.

34-17 Michigan 

#20 TX Tech @ Kansas - The Jayhawks, much like Kentucky, are just biding their time until basketball season starts.

The Red Raiders are damn good with a top 3 passing attack and a 33 year old head coach in Kliff Kingsbury that's brought an energy to the program. And he's apparently the most eligible head coach in the country..
but that still doesn't mean shit if he can't win game, and he's doing just that. Kingsbury was the OC for Texas A&M last season and helped Johnny Football become Johnny Heisman.  As an encore, he's returned to his alma mater and turned walk on freshman QB Baker Mayfield into one of the best QB's in the country.

So what's next for Kinsbury?  Dating a model?  An actress?  Maybe a pop star?
Jessica Simpson and Kliff Kingsbury
Been there, done that. Allegedly. We do know Jessica has a thing for QB's from Texas.

I'm not sure where Kingsbury goes from here, but a win over Kansas is a good start.

45-10 TX Tech 

K State @ #21 Okie State - After hanging over 55 points on two bad teams for a couple weeks in a row the Cowboys offense cam crashing back to earth against WVU of all teams. The Cowboys were sloppy and their D couldn't stop WVU when it counted.

K State just isn't the same team without former QB Collin Klein at the helm.  JUCO transfer QB Jake Waters has been up and down and just doesn't have the skill players around him to make K State a legit contender in the Big XII this year.  That said, K State is known for winning games they shouldn't, so you can never count them out.  I still think Okie State is over rated.  This is my upset special of the week.

34-27 K State 

#22 Arizona State @ Notre Dame - After their loss to Oklahoma last weekend, Notre Dame players headed directly into their locker room, neglecting to stop and sing the alma mater with the student section, as is tradition in South Bend.  That was a surprise to everyone but HC Brian Kelly, who apparently changed tradition 2 years ago and claimed the players no longer sing the alma mater after home losses.  I guess nobody ever noticed since Notre Dame did not lose at all at home last season?  Either way, the alumni and students were not happy with him, and more importantly, they are not happy with Notre Dame's 3-2 record.

The Irish are now unranked and have surrendered 41 and 35 points in their losses.  They now face an Arizona State squad that hung 62 on USC in a game that was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.  After their beat down, USC HC Lane Kiffin was fired.  I guess USC AD Pat Haden felt that since the NCAA wouldn't reduce their sanctions, the next best thing he could do for the program was get rid of Kiffin, and just about all of USC fans would agree.

The Sun Devils should be 2-2 but were saved by the refs in the Wisconsin game.  It's not often that Notre Dame is an underdog at home, but Arizona State is over rated.

27-21 Notre Dame 

#23 Fresno State @ Idaho - Fresno State is lead by QB Derek Carr, little brother of former first overall pick and Houston Texans tackling dummy David Carr.  Carr, already married with a child, seems to be the anti-Manziel.
Derek Carr and wife Heather. 
The Bulldogs are off to a 4-0 start and will be favored in every game for the rest of the season.  They're looking to become the latest BCS buster from the Mountain West conference but only a Charmin soft schedule will prevent them from doing so.  They've already won arguably their two toughest games this season against Rutgers and Boise State.  Only an upset stands in the way of a perfect season, but even a 12-0 record may not be enough for a BCS bid after the embarrassment that was Northern Illinois in the BCS last season.

Idaho is bad.  Not as bad as Temple, but bad.

45-7 Fresno State 

#24 Ole Miss @ Auburn - Ole Miss officials have apologized for the behavior of a group of freshman football players who used "borderline hate speech", aka derogatory terms for homosexuals, directed at student actors during a University theater production of "The Laramie Project."

However, that headline buries the lead.  The investigation should focus on why Ole Miss football players are actually attending class and the boosters reaction to such a travesty.

But seriously folks, this is Ole Miss we're talking about.  For every American flag you'll find a Confederate flag not far behind.  Former plantations dot the country side.  The state has a long and sordid history of racial intolerance that's still inexplicably a source of pride for some in the state.  So progress at Ole Miss is measured differently.  Even though yelling homosexual slurs are fellow students is intolerant and immature, it sure beats a race riot.  Progress.

The Rebels were shut out by Alabama last week 25-0.  The Rebels were held to 205 total yards and couldn't do anything on the ground.

Auburn lost to LSU 35-21 last week.  Auburn was down early but never gave up, but they had no answer for LSU RB Jeremy Hill.  Both teams should be able to put up some points this week, but I'll give the edge to Auburn at home.

34-30 Auburn 

Games of Note

Penn State @ Indiana - Penn State got an early Hanukkah gift from the NCAA during their bye week in the form of reduced sanctions.  The Nittany Lions got 5 scholarships back for the 2014 cycle, giving them 20 total.  They are also now allowed 75 players on scholarship starting next season before returning to a full 25 scholarships and 85 total in 2016.  While USC fired their coach and continue to whine incessantly about their sanctions as an excuse for their poor performance on the field, PSU HC Bill O'Brien never complains and continues to win despite the sanctions.  The only people that seem to be upset about the reduction are opposing fan bases who hoped to gain from Penn State's loss.  Which is an ironic commentary on the culture of college football.

On the field, PSU's D couldn't stop Central Florida in a home loss two weeks ago.  The offense seems to still be figuring it out, at times looking almost unstoppable, and at other times going three and out and looking like it's their first spring practice.

We know Indiana can score, but can they defend?  The Hoosiers gave up 41 to Navy and 45 to Missouri, both losses.  Neither of those offenses has a weapon like WR Allen Robinson or a QB as talented as FR QB Christian Hackenburg.  This game should be fun to watch as both teams will be able to put up points.

41-31 Penn state 

Florida International @ Southern Miss - If it's bad football you like, this is your game of the year!  Both teams are 0-4 and the Eagles are riding a 16 game losing streak.  Both squads are atrocious on offense and even worse on defense.  If it were possible for both teams to lose, these two teams would find a way to do it.  

24-17 Southern Miss