Simply stated, we’re looking at 12 major unbeaten teams in the Top 25. Teams are bowl-eligible. The big boys will have to play each other…and already, that process has begun.
Here’s what I learned about college football this weekend:
1. Quarterbacks are beginning to emerge and make huge differences in games. Out west, Stanford’s Andrew Luck (above) is quietly enjoying another outstanding season. But that was expected. What wasn’t was Ohio State’s freshman Braxton Miller. He led the Buckeyes to a seemingly invincible third quarter lead (27-6) before leaving with a sprained ankle. Too bad for the Scarlet and Grey. His replacement, former starter Joe Bauserman, was totally ineffective. Miller was 4-6 for just 68 yards while rushing for 79 yards in the first half. Not really impressive, but something happened when he was injured. And Big Red went on to win the game. Just sayin’… But the real story in this game was Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez. He was being booed early, but those jeers turned to cheers as he ran for 102 yards, was 16-22 for 191 yards passing and led the Huskers to a huge comeback win. In the SEC, Arkansas’ Tyler Wilson completed 19 straight passes at one time and passed for 262 yards in leading the Razorbacks to a huge win over Auburn. Last week, Wilson passed for 510 yards in the Hogs’ improbable comeback win against Texas A&M.
2. Oklahoma will NOT be dismissed. Yes, the Sooners entered their Red River Rivalry game yesterday against Texas as the No. 3 team in the country behind LSU and Alabama. SO, just to keep things straight, they did NOT let up on the young Longhorns. In fact, OU dismantled them, 55-17, in a game that was not that close. From the passing of Landry Jones (31-50, 367, 3TD passes) to the receiving of Ryan Broyles (9 catches, 122 yards, 1 TD) and the swarming defense, the Sooners scored on their first four possessions, building a quick lead they never relinquished. Voters have been more impressed with LSU and Alabama because of their dominating games, so Oklahoma decided to have one of their own. It will not be the last. I think we are looking at a conference-deciding game on Dec. 4 when OU and Oklahoma State meet in Bedlam. Could be a classic game.
3. Don’t dismiss Boise State. Wow…I know Fresno State is NOT a top-ten team…but what a performance by Boise. This is a classy team, in my opinion. They don’t try to run up scores, but their second-teamers are pretty good. They don’t LOOK like a top-five team…maybe it’s their uniforms…I don’t know. All I know is this non-BCS AQ team could figure in a major bowl this season. I do not see any falloff like they had last season against Nevada that cost them a BCS bowl appearance. Boise QB Kellen Moore (above) is headed to become the winningest quarterback in college history. His leadership on and off the field is outstanding. The line play is outstanding. Their receivers are pretty, pretty good. And their defense is outstanding. Don’t believe me? Ask the Georgia Bulldogs, who are playing pretty well themselves. Boise crushed them in Atlanta to open the season…and it’s a good thing because the TCU game upcoming is the only tough one left for the Broncos.
4. In case you haven’t noticed…Stanford and QB Andrew Luck are pretty good. Yesterday’s 48-7 trouncing of Pac 12 newcomer Colorado said a lot. Because they are on the West Coast, and only Oregon seems to get the attention of the nation, Stanford quietly is 5-0. The No. 7 team in the nation has the best QB in the nation. Yesterday he was 26-33 for 370 yards and 3 TD’s. I haven’t seen Stanford, but they are quietly playing outstanding ball.
5. LSU and Alabama…only one of them will survive. One will probably go onto the BSC National Championship and the other to another bowl game (the National Championship will be played in New Orleans in the Superdome…just like the Sugar Bowl, where the loser of this battle could end up). Until they play each other (Nov. 5 at Bama), they will both continue to roll over opponents. LSU plays at Tennessee and against Auburn before then…Bama plays at Ole Miss and against Tennessee. Nothing will stop these two teams other than themselves until then. November 5 cannot come soon enough.
There’s so much going on in college football right now, it’s great to be a fan. I’ll be back on Thursday with my look ahead at the Top Five Games to Watch (Week 7)!