Stanford and Cal had a long discussion of the merits of college athletics and whether a football game at the proposed time would in fact have any benefits in the spiritual well being of the surrounding human ecosphere. They finally decided it couldn’t hurt, and the Cardinal rolled the Golden Bears 21-3.
I would tell you that Oregon beat Arizona State 43-21 on the road, but the score after 60 minutes does little to provide any insight into the game. The score after 18 minutes, when Oregon was winning 43-7, does a much better job.
Florida and South Carolina were in a war early, until the Gators recovered consecutive Gamecock fumbles and scored consecutive touchdowns. From 21-3 it was a romp, with a pretty damn good Florida team exposing the continued comical overrating of a slightly-better-than-good-at-best South Carolina squad.
Guess what? Georgia isn’t good either (shocking right, that the SEC doesn’t have 6 top-ten teams). The Bulldogs barely survived against lowly Kentucky, who, thanks to Auburn, might actually not be the worst team in the SEC this year.
Texas A&M played a fierce first half against LSU, but was eventually out-muscled in a 24-19 Tiger win. LSU has a knack for winning football games in which they look like the inferior team, maybe Les Miles prepares for every game as if LSU is the inherent underdog (or undercat).
Mississippi State has yet to lose a game. The Bulldogs are licking their chops for a Tide upset next week, and Tennessee’s halfway decent performance should give them at least some film to utilize in what will need to be a duct-tape-and-staples showing against a seemingly invincible football team.
However, seemingly here being the proper adverb, as Alabama still has yet to win a big game (no, Michigan really isn’t any good at all), and has yet to play from anything resembling behind. What happens if Oregon gets up 14-0 early on this team? This week, Tennessee hung tough until the Vols were stuffed on a 4th and 1 at the Alabama 30 down 23-10. The Tide rolled from there, final score 44-13.
Colorado is an awful, awful football team, but USC didn’t embarrass themselves with an efficient 50-6 beating. The Trojans are plodding along until games against Oregon and Notre Dame, and they better not lose along the way or this could be a disappointing 8-4 season for Southern Cal.
Oregon State casually beat Utah 21-7. The Beavers remain undefeated and will put all of their eggs in the upset-Oregon basket as they get the Ducks at home to close out the season.
Oklahoma beat Kansas by a lot of points. The Jayhawks only win on the season was a thrilling 31-17 showing against South Dakota State, and will remain so as it would require a miracle for KU to go anything other than 1-11.
Oklahoma State showed some grit in a 31-10 grudge match win over Iowa State. The Cowboys aren’t bad, and could pull off an upset or two against their remaining schedule. So could the Cyclones. So could, ironically, the Horns.
Texas proved a win is a win in a Big-12esque 56-50 shootout against Baylor. Why Texas’ defense gives up 6 less than Baylor’s with the current Longhorn roster makes me continue to question the competence of Manny Diaz, and the continued 3rd down efficiency and touchdown drive engineering prowess of the offense makes me think that Harsin and Applewhite are the only competent members of the Horns coaching staff.
K-State… where to begin? I keep waiting for the Wildcats to have a slow start and lose a game they shouldn’t, but this team is finally the real deal. Very real, I might add, as any premonitions of West Virginia aside holding Geno Smith to 14 points in Morgantown is an accomplishment worthy of praise. So is scoring 7 total touchdowns in a Heisman statement win. Wildcats 55, Mountaineers 14.
Notre Dame slipped up against BYU, ceding back to back touchdown scores in the 2nd quarter, but a 2nd half shutout of the Cougars gave the Fighting Irish enough room to win, 17-14. I can’t wait to watch Landry Jones play this defense.
Florida State pulled away late against Miami, staying alive in the ACC, and Clemson whipped Virginia Tech (hey, I thought they would lose that game. Way to go, Tigers). It’s too late at night for me to look up the ACC tiebreaker rules for advancing to the conference championship game, but I would assume Florida State’s win over Clemson will provide a berth absent another loss.
Rutgers is undefeated and ranked 15th in the country. Tell me when they win a BCS bowl and I might shrug and say something like, "eh I guess the Big East is okay." Rutgers 35, Temple 10.
Meanwhile, Louisville is undefeated and ranked 16th in the country. As long as one of them doesn’t lose a bad game the Big East should have at least one ranked team when all is said and done. The Cardinals won a close game with South Florida this week, thanks to late game heroics by Teddy Bridgewater (pretty sure this is the handsome, southern gentleman who an18 year old daughter might run away with against the will of her father, if anyone is planning on writing an American romance novel). Cardinals 27, Bulls 25.
No, Cincinnati, you aren’t one of the best 25 teams in the country. Toledo might be though. The Rockets sport only an overtime loss to Arizona, and have wins over Wyoming and all 3 regional Michigan teams (Central, Eastern and Western for those counting at home). 29-23 Rockets.
Impressive Showing of the Week: Kansas State, because Florida was playing at home. Also Oregon for continuing to be everything associated with impressive.
1. Oregon- 43-7 after 18 minutes. On the road. On Thursday night. Against a team who was 5-1 before the Ducks showed up. If you’re playing against Oregon’s first half pace you’re losing, on average, 67-16. I think Nick Saban set the line at 8.5.
2. Kansas State- I only rank the Wildcats ahead of the Gators because I slightly favor road wins against Oklahoma and West Virginia over home wins against LSU and South Carolina. Most people don’t, but I forgive them.
3. Florida- has 3 wins better than Alabama’s best one, and shares the 4th. Why no one seems to care? Alabama's 2 titles were more recent than Florida's, which to be honest is decent reasoning.
4. Alabama- Michigan really hosed you, Tide. Redeem yourselves against Mississippi State, and don't lose.
5. Notre Dame- BYU isn’t great, but the Irish could win every game remaining 17-14 and be the best team in the country.
1. LSU- The Tigers just… win football games. Which, to an extent, is a lost art.
2. Oklahoma- Alice is about to enter Wonderland, let’s hope for Sooner fans that she emerges with less than 3 losses.
3. USC- 1 loss is only 1 more than Oregon, and the Ducks are on the schedule.
4. Florida State- should be the favorite to win the ACC. The Noles are still very capable on both sides of the ball; they need to quit shooting themselves in the foot.
5. Mississippi State- can’t argue with undefeated.
6. Oregon State- I mean, you never know, right?
I’m not against ranking Ohio State as one of the best 10 teams in the country, but I don’t think they are, and since they aren’t eligible for BCS ranking the Big 10 has 0 teams in the top 25 of the BCS. Which is 7 less than both the Big 12 and SEC. What the hell happened? Denard Robinson should be good for 10 wins a season when he’s healthy. And that’s not an overstatement.