|I hope you were able to catch at least a few of the games last Saturday. It was as advertised; an epic day, Separation Saturday as ESPN called it. Before we get to the rankings, just a few personal thoughts.|
Now on to the rankings…
- The Auburn/LSU game was incredible. I call it a tie because of a bad call late in the game. Does that sound familiar?
- Oklahoma was robbed. Sorry Gordon, I know you are a big Ducks fan, but only a group of blind refs could not have seen this screw up. But then one of the refs did work the Stanford/Cal debacle a few years ago. A one game suspension is not enough for this error. Do I need to set up an eye clinic in Eugene?
- Notre Dame has been exposed. My favorite play was the 4th quarter “Statue of Liberty” from Mr. Quinn to Michigan. Now if only Michigan can find a way to beat Ohio State.
On the cusp: Georgia (3-0), Virginia Tech (3-0), Boston College (3-0), Clemson (2-1), and TCU (3-0)
- Ohio St. (3-0) – Beat Cincinnati 37-7. College Gameday makes its near-annual visit to Columbus this week as Ohio St. takes on Penn St. in what is a weak slate of games. Expect Ohio St. to have their way with the Paterno’s crew just as Notre Dame did. This week: Penn St. (2-1).
- Auburn (3-0) – Beat LSU 7-3. The Tigers have cleared one of the three big hurdles on the schedule this season. This week, its fine tuning against one of the dregs of 1-A football to heal the wounds of LSU and prepare for next week’s Thursday game against South Carolina. The offense will need to be better against Florida and Georgia to remain in the national title race. This week: Buffalo (1-2).
- USC (2-0) – Beat Nebraska 28-10. The Trojans never had that wow moment where they threw a couple of offensive haymakers to blowout Nebraska. They might have needed it just to win had Bill Callahan actually done what his West Coast offense is supposed to do (throw the ball). Instead, a workmanlike win takes USC to what should be an 8-0 start. This week: Arizona (2-1).
- Michigan (3-0) – Beat Notre Dame. That was one of the most impressive performances of the season, but it should be taken with a grain of salt. Three years ago, Michigan killed a ranked Notre Dame team 38-0 and ended up 10-3. For all we know, Notre Dame might still be like they were in the 90s, Weis’ record is the same as Willingham’s at this point in their Notre Dame careers (11-3). Michigan could be in for a tougher than expected battle against Wisconsin this week. This week: Wisconsin (3-0).
- West Virginia (3-0) – Beat Maryland 45-24. The beginning of this game was just like the Sugar Bowl against Georgia last year. Maryland was dead and buried before the end of the first quarter. That was exactly the type of performance the Mountaineers needed in one of their Thursday night showcase games. They have two more later against Louisville and Pittsburgh. This week: East Carolina (1-2).
- Florida (3-0) – Beat Tennessee 21-20. The team showed a toughness that they haven’t had in a long time in coming back at Tennessee. Last years team didn’t have it and the Ron Zook teams certainly never did (except against Georgia). This week: Kentucky (2-1).
- Louisville (3-0) – Beat Miami 31-7. Teams should know not to stomp on the Louisville logo. Miami is just the latest in a string of teams to do this, disrespect the Cardinals and get killed. Last year is was Rutgers and the score was 56-5. The year before it was Cincinnati and the score was 70-7. On a season note, Louisville still must prove it can play on the road. It gets that chance this week. at Kansas St. (3-0).
- LSU (2-1) – Lost to Auburn 7-3. JaMarcus Russell needs to get better in the mental part of the game. He has all the physical tools, but he tries to do too much in some situations and makes critical mistakes in others. On the last two plays against Auburn, he never threw into the end zone when he needed a touchdown and he threw short to the middle of the field instead of throwing the ball away with 15 seconds left after eluding the rush. This week: Tulane (1-2).
- Texas (2-1) – Beat Rice 52-7. The Longhorns were evaluated as though the loss to Ohio St. was last week and not the week before since it would be unfair to move them up after a 52-7 win because they happened to have their big game scheduled one week earlier. They should have let Colt McCoy throw more than eight times against Rice to get him more comfortable. This week: Iowa St. (2-1).
- Oregon (3-0) – Beat Oklahoma 34-33. Yes, the calls were terrible, but Oregon made the plays after those calls and Oklahoma did not. While terrible calls, they are not as bad as the 5th down game between Missouri and Colorado in 1990. For one thing, the Colorado play was the last play of the game. For another, this game is unlikely to decide the national championship since Oregon is not going undefeated unless they play turnover free football. This week: Bye.
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