and he can see that you're over the line.
Another week, another big win. We are still currently on the outside looking in, and will likely remain that way until after the BYU redemption, but I still wanted to do the analysis, for my benefit if anything.
AP #31. We currently have 70 points in the AP poll. Ball State, the 25th ranked team, has 97. Northwestern, who sits 30th, has 78, preceded by Cal with 80, Illinois with 81, Tulsa with 85 and Wisconsin with 96, just barely out of the thing. Wake Forest, who is 21st, gives us an early shot this week on Thursday when host Clemson. The Tigers have been exceptionally lackluster this year, per usual, but maybe they can catch a little fire on the road against a ranked opponent? Another big game is #23 Michigan State at Northwestern. This game will help us either way as whoever loses will likely fall behind us in the rankings, but we would directly benefit from a Northwestern loss as they only rank one spot ahead of us. Another game to watch will be Notre Dame at #22 UNC and, although it goes against every fiber in my body to route for Notre Dame, a loss against the Clausen boys would surely spiral a then 4-2 UNC team out of the top 25 and into the 30s.
Coaches #27. For whatever reason the coaches poll is typically more friendly towards underdog teams like the Frogs, and 27th, to me, is likely more accurate to where we sit in the national rankings as opposed to 31st. We currently have 84 points in this poll and only sit behind North Carolina who has 88. So you can see how beneficial a Notre Dame win would be in this instance. 20-25 in the coaches poll is occupied by South Florida (267), Wake Forest (247), Northwestern (231), Auburn (121), Wisconsin (105) and Cal (98). So as you can see we are pretty much behind all of the same teams in either poll but in varying orders. The good news, though, is that all of these teams, save USF and Cal who are off this week, play very loseable games. With a win over CSU, look for TCU to jump right back into the coaches top 25 on Sunday.
Games to Watch.
Regardless of what you have planned for Saturday, this is easily the best Saturday of college football thusfar this season, and maybe of the entire year. Other than the obvious big games (TX/OU, Fla/LSU, etc), here's a look at some other games to check out that will have a direct influence on the Frogs' rankings
#21/21 Wake Forest (-3) vs. Clemson - Thurs. Clemson sucks, but so does the rest of the ACC. Anything can happen.
Illinois (-13) vs. Minnesota. We outrank them by a decent margin in the coaches poll, but a loss to the Gophers would put us ahead of the Illini in the AP poll. Unfortunately, the Gophers are really bad (and, with GP shunning them, I suppose they wouldn't be inspired by winning one fo the Frogs?) and the RonZooks are pretty good. Don't count on this one.
#23/19 Michigan State (-1.5) at Northwestern. Win-win situation for the Frogs in this one. Nerd school vs. dirty school. Too close to call, especially since I know nothing of either team except that Javon Ringer is a stud. I'll give the edge to the Spartans solely based on that.
#22/NR North Carolina (-8) vs. Notre Dame. Mentioned above... we are behind the Heels in both polls so a Notre Dame victory is essential. The fat man is due, right?
#20/23 Auburn (-18.5) vs. Arkansas. Sorry, I think I said something about all of the teams being in very loseable games... well, forgot this one. And Arkansas is my #2 team, so a lot of the times I'll have non-realistic expectations... but I'm all over the pessimist bandwagon this year. The Hogs are terrible. They don't make lines like that in the SEC that don't involve pre Jay Cutler Vanderbilt very often. Hell, even that zombie Croom is only getting 3 to Vanderbilt. I don't believe either offense can score 18.5 points though.
#25/NR Ball State (no line) at Western Kentucky. Get these guys out! Don't think it happens this week, but seriously, someone do something! I mean, even God took exception and took away their best receiver to prevent this and they still roll. Sorry, inappropriate. Pansy, will you reprimand my callousness? Also, how can you pull for a school that Jason Whitlock attended?
NR/#24 Wisconsin (+6) vs. #6 Penn State. Go ahead and mark it zero, Donny. Badgers are entering a world of pain. Also, for you bettors, Penn State is good, and six is nowhere near enough points.
#15/16 Boise State (-11) at Southern Miss. Boise gets a big fail stamp against non conference teams on the road... and the BCS heirarchy is due for a cast off. I think a loss here tosses them from the rankings.
That's about it. Another game of interest is #16/15 Kansas vs. Colorado...would a loss and a 4-2 record knock Kansas out? So, let's see, Go Tigers, Gophers, Spartans/Wildcats, Irish (;;shiver::) , Hogs, whatever Western Kentucky is, Nittany Lions and Golden Eagles. And, of course, the Frogs. And I guess the strength of schedule Sooners.
Also, and just because Vegas was feeling like losing, they only set the line of the SMU - Tulsa game at 25... Tulsa will score 25 points on the opening possession. Somehow. Take it! Take it!