Last Week: Winned #18 Penn State 24-3.
In what was supposed to be a rekindling of an old rivalry, Penn State pretty much bent over and let Trent Richardson have his way with them as he ran up 210 yards and 3 TDs filling in for the injured Mark Ingram. Fun Fact! This series was actually supposed to begin in the mid-aughts but Alabama asked if they could move it back to this year so they could get back on their feet after the Dubose/Francione disaster years. Joe Pa probably doesn’t remember this, but he’d like a redo anyway.
This Week: at Duke +24. 2:30PM. ABC.
#2 Ohio State
This Week: vs. Ohio +30. 11:00AM. BTN.
# 3. Boise State.
Last week: Idle, but technically a loss because of the whole James Madison fiasco.
So what does all this have to do with their game against the Cowboys? Nothing really… except that they’re going to absolutely destroy them if they have the chance because absolute destruction is the only chance Boise has of staying ahead in the polls. Sorry, Dave.
Last Week: Winned Tennessee 48-13.
So much for my upset call. Tennessee actually led this game 13-3 and it was tied at the half. Then the Vols defense rolled a few J’s and decided to hang out in the locker room during the second half as the Ducks scored 35 unanswered, 45 overall, to roll to the win. Pretty much all you need to know about this one happens in this video.
This Week: vs. Portland State. No line. 5:15PM.
New ground rule: If it doesn’t have a line, I’m not previewing. So there.
Last Week: Winned Wyoming 34-7.
Pretty well covered what happened in this one earlier, but Garrett Gilbert grew up a little bit after a shaky start, piling up 222 yards and TD. Still, it was Wyoming, so let’s not hand him the trophy just yet.
This Week: @ Texas Tech +3.5. 7:00PM. ABC.
Major, major post-game treat alert here as the Horns return to the scene of the crime, otherwise known as the time that Blake Gideon may as well have been wearing the other teams’s jersey because he blew it so hard. And Michael Trabtree played a role as well. Regardless, Lubbock is going to be going absolutely NANNERS for this one, although it won’t be like two years ago. Let’s face it, this game will not be anywhere near as explosive as the networks hope it to be. Tech is still breaking in a new regime and I’m not sure they even like their QB, Gilbert is still getting his footing, and Texas will be using its third starting running back in as many weeks. Lots of variables at play here. Plus, Texas struggles against Tech in Lubbock, going 9-9 in all games played between the two on the plains. Besides that, Tech has hands down the worst fans in the entire country. Seriously, there are eastern European soccer teams where the fans have to be separated by barbed wire and still manage to kill one another who have better manners. Do you think Garrett Gilbert has what it takes to stand up to those assholes? He’s been a goldenboy all his life – His high school teams never lost, he played in the NCAA Title game as a freshman and brought him team to within three points of the lead and thusfar has underperformed but in front of the home fans. The first time he makes a poor play, he’s going to know about it. Those west Texas imbreds are going to have a FIELD day with the guy. He’s the biggest variable in this whole thing.
But while Texas hasn’t exactly played stellar competition, Tech hasn’t proven themselves either, letting SMU sneak back in and almost force that game into OT despite a 3 TD lead, and then they played New Mexico, which needs no explanation. And while Taylor Potts has put up the numbers the Raiders always expected him to – 652 yards, 7TDs/0 INTS – the Red Raiders have pretty much abandoned the ground game that Tuberville was supposed to be so fond of, and the last time Tommy T experimented with the spread offense, he was fired from Auburn. Texas has a pretty decent secondary; if they are able to contain Potts, will Baron Batch be ready to carry the load? Texas also has a very good rush defense, so the odds are against him being able to roll up some major yards given he only has 25 attempts on the year.
The stats really favor Texas. For their part, Tech has a terrible passing defense – surprise! – and only a mediocre run D. Therefore, Garrett Glbert will have opportunities to take his shots and Texas, though they won’t run anyone to death all year, should be able to move the ball on the ground if need be.
My personal gut feeling? I think this one will be close. I doubt the Horns are able to shut down Potts for a considerable amount of time, and I think Tech will pack the box and make Gilbert have a transcendent game to beat them – and I’m not sure that he does. Still, this game just has the feeling of a typical bullshit Mack Brown win – play from behind, let Tech jump out to a few quick scores, then turn the tables after halftime. I don’t think it’s as high scoring as two years ago, but Texas has the superior defense and will win it in the end.
A SNEEEEEEEEEEEEAKY good game here with both teams riding high after big wins, although I’m not so sure the Falcons aren’t even more juiced up after finally knocking the BYU monkey off their backs. And I couldn’t be happier for them. I just wish the Academy would treat Provo like they’ve been treating Afghanistan and bomb it off the map. Only 4 more gamedays until that hate fest. I am SO ready.
But the Air Force defense, believe it or not, is actually pretty good against the pass and could keep Landry Jones from having a game like the one against FSU. Sadly though, they are not that great against the run and although Demarco Murray wasn’t as explosive last week as he was the one before, he’s still legit and wasn’t really needed last week, thus the small numbers.
I would really like to go with Air Force here, and I hate to completely neglect what happened against Utah State because they then beat an overrated Florida State team, but at home the Sooners will win this one. Regardless, if you like points, you’ll like this game.
Last Week: Winned Idaho 38-17.
Again, the score deceives the eye here – Nebraska picked off Idaho five times in this one and led 31-0 in the third quarter before the Vandals scored some garbage time points. Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez rolled up 157 yards on the ground and scored twice and became the first Huskers QB since Eric Crouch to make Tom Osborne feel as happy as a little girl.
This Week: @ Warshington +3.5. 2:30PM. ABC.
As much as I want Nebraska to lose because I just can’t buy into them, I want Jake Locker to lose more just so we can finally shut down that hype train once and for all. Hopefully after BYU was run over by Air Force, that loss looks even worse for the Huskies despite Locker creaming Syracuse this past weekend and his current season totals of 555 yards, 5 TDs and 0 INTs. However, Nebraska has had at least 3 picks in each of their last 3 games, so Jake will have his work cut out of him. I’m actually kind of shocked that this game has such a small spread – guess that whole east coast exposure thing really is working out for the Huskies QB. These are two polar opposite teams offensively as Washington loves passing the ball and Nebraska hates it, and the opposite. For their part, Nebraska has a much better overall defense and, quite honestly, this game runs concurrent to ours and I won’t get to watch it anyway, so I’m tired of talking about. I think Nebraska will cruise.
Snoozer. Iowa State is garbage. Much worse for the Big 12 than Baylor. Why can’t we lobby those guys out?
Another sneaky good game, this one as a nightcap to the Tech/UT post game extravaganza. But you’re all supposed to be listening to Whalers then anyway, so I guess it doesn’t matter does it? Arizona has ridden QB Nick Foles to two wins to open the year against Toledo and… someone that doesn’t matter, but Iowa has been shockingly potent. We knew they’d have a good defense again, but the offense has been a nice surprise. Injuries have destroyed the Hawkeyes rushing attack the past couple of years, but this year thru 2 weeks they’ve averaged 227 yards a game. Captain American QB Ricky Stanzi has also looked sharp, completing over 70% of his passes and throwing 3 TDs.
This one looks like it will come down to the ground game though, and Iowa seems to have the edge. Arizona is not very good against the run and Iowa is very good against it. You can check the stats yourself. They’re real. Besides, Iowa doesn’t start losing games until they get their fan hopes just a little too high and need to temper the expectations.
Last Week: Winned South Florida 38-14.
This Week @ Tennessee +17.5. 2:30PM. CBS.
A delightfully classic hatefest, except this year Tennessee actually has a chance. I don’t mean this as a compliment to the Vols – they aren’t going to be good – but more of a knock on the Gators who have been extremely underwhelming. The Vols get a boost as Chris Rainey, one of Florida’s leading playmakers, has been removed from the team indefinitely for allegedly stalking a young Florida lady. He sent her a text that said, “time to die.” Seriously? Guns N Roses? Please.
Really, I have no faith in either offense. John Brantley sucks. Florida’s O Line sucks. Chris Simms’ little brother sucks. Tennessee actually has a decent run game, but those stats are padded due to the Tennessee-Martin game. So I’m going defenses. And Florida actually has one. It’s the only reason they’ve won both of their games. Tennessee, however, does NOT have one at present – see LaMichael James run above. And Jeffrey Demps is at least in the same ballpark as James when it comes to… explosiveness? Is that the word? It’ll be close early, but Florida will blow it open after halftime.
So, a couple of seriously major games this weekend, but mostly just early season dudfests. The real game of the week is going down in sold out Amon G this weekend though, and I’ll have that preview up and running Friday.