As usual there were some good games yesterday and their were a few surprises also. The cream is rising, as they say, and some schools that had delusions of grandeur have fallen to the wayside. Others that should be right there at the end have had their chances diminished, if not outright ruined. This week I again went 5-5 for a season total of 67-24.
Did anyone really think that Mississippi State would could hang with the Tide? I know there was a lot of hope, but really..........Barring some sort of unforeseen melt down, or if the Mayan calender thing proves to be correct, the Crimson Tide will play for the national championship. Who will the opponent be would be the question.
The top contender to go against Alabama at this point would probably be KSU. Of all the teams I have watched thus far, they may be the only squad that has the defensive/offensive balance to have a shot at unseating the current (and possible repeat) national champ. KSU handled a pretty good TTU squad with relative ease.
Uninspired play is what Oklahoma is guilty of. Uninspired! There is no real reason that the Sooners should have let an inferior team sneak up and beat them like that. There is no reason that the Sooners can be included in the conversation to play for the BCS "National Championship" at this point also. Unfortunately the door is wide open for Notre Dame to be included in that talk. Also the door is open for the "but wait, they don't play a tough schedule" conversation. There will be a lot of that talk should the Irish run the table the rest of the way and of course, as usual, Oregon is already being talked about in the same manner. Their detractors have a good and valid point, but undefeated is undefeated at this point in the season. It is hard to win them all. I don't care who you are.. Ask Florida, Oregon State, Ohio, and Rutgers this morning.
I did not watch any of the Ohio State/PSU game. No point. Neither figure in the race this year. If the Buckeyes were not under sanction, they would have their advocates also. I would imagine that should OSU run the table the rest of the way (and there is no reason why they won't), the OSU honks will declare themselves national champs anyway. Much like USC did a few years back. USC fans may have had a valid point the season there was a "split national champion." Any talk of OSU this season would be ridiculous. For the most part, the Big Ten is just not quality competition this year. They may have more in common with the MAC than the SEC. Not taking a shot. Just the way it is.
What can one say about USC? They are out of the conversation for good.. They can play spoiler now at best. They are capable of beating Notre Dame sure and possibly Oregon. Or not.
The Big East has been exposed by the MAC. Nothing real surprising here. Rutgers was living dangerously and finally took a loss to Kent State and Toledo showed up a Cincinnati squad last week. Louisville is the class of the conference but would be lower middle of the pack in the SEC and middle of the pack in the Big Twelve and perhaps the ACC. Well maybe upper middle in the ACC. FSU and Clemson are the only quality teams in that league. I think it is safe to say that the Seminole loss to NC State a while back was a bit of a fluke. As far a Louisville goes, the kid Bridgewater could start behind center for just about any team and Coach Strong will likely be lured away for more money and greener pastures. Arkansas and Auburn come to mind. Perhaps Iowa, but he would probably be smart enough to shy away from the Big Ten. Remember John L Smith (current Arkansas coach), left Louisville for the Big Ten and his career has pretty much gone down hill from there. Petrino also,made the mistake of leaving Louisville but then Bobby is trash and kind of has a tendency to shoot himself in the crotch.
Ohio was "upset" by Miami (OH). The Bobcats have been living on the edge all season and finally got bit. With one conference loss they are out of the driver seat in the MAC, but still have a decent shot at the conference crown. They need someone to falter. Someone will. The Bobcats are a good, but somewhat underachieving football team.
Anything else worth mentioning? I suppose that we will have to wait for someone to derail Oregon. It might not happen this season. They are the best of the PAC 12. Are they national championship contenders? Not so sure. They have played a very very light schedule but three of the next four opponents have an opportunity to take them out of the national conversation.
ULM will win the Sun Belt. That seems pretty obvious at this point. Ditto for Boise State in the MWC. Tulsa was off yesterday, but it is pretty safe to assume that they will win out in CUSA. They meet the Hogs next week and should be able to win that one. They will have to show up and play better than they did against Rice a couple of weeks back though. They will. I am thinking this might be John L Smith's first and last year in Fayetteville. He would get a pass for a bad season (or perhaps two) after taking over a program left in disarray by the scum Petrino, but Smith has some personal issues of his own that are likely to be seen by the administration as a distraction. I would like to see one of the "big fats" (Mangino, Amstutz or Friedgen) get a call, but I am expecting them to make a play for Charlie Strong. They won't be the only schools after Strong rest assured.
Louisiana Tech should win the WAC, but both Utah State and San Jose State are good WAC teams and will be gunning for the Bulldogs. It might get interesting.......
There was another devastating injury on the field of play. If you saw the Lattimore injury yesterday you would have felt your stomach turn. Also let us not forget Tulane's Devon Walker who could well have died on the field of play in an early season game with Tulsa. Donation's for Devon Walker can be made if one is so inclined. I have.
Have a good week.