No Sleep Till Football

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The Week That Was: NCAA Football Week 12

This is a feature I should have been writing for the jump, but for some reason the idea just came to me & this is an evolving blog so obviously it’s only going to get better with time…..I hope! I don’t do much in the way of recapping the weekend although I spend a lot of Saturday & Sunday watching football. That and building houses with legos and playing tea party. I’ll go conference by conference using only the AQ conferences & then a non-AQ section where I’ll go over the games that matter.

ACC

Boston College 17, Virginia 13
NC State 29, North Carolina 25

Georgia Tech 30, Duke 20
Clemson 30. Wake Forest 10

Virginia Tech 31, Miami-FL 17
Florida St. 30, Maryland 16

The ACC has been a jumbled up mess for most of the year, but with Maryland losing to FSU & NC State getting past UNC, we have a little more room to guess at the eventual ACC championship game. Miami-FL had to beat Virginia Tech & then hope the Hokies lost to Virginia to win the ACC Coastal, but now Virginia Tech has that wrapped up. The ACC Atlantic is going to come down to this week’s NC State/Maryland tilt. If Maryland wins then Florida St. will meet Virginia Tech in the ACC title game. If NC State wins, then it’ll be the first ever ACC championship game appearances for the Wolfpack. I’m rooting for NC State in all of this. I think Tom O’Brien has done a great job in Raleigh and it’s cool that NC State is becoming a major player in the ACC again.

The wins by Boston College, Clemson & Georgia Tech get them bowl eligible giving the ACC 9-teams that can play in a postseason bowl.

BIG XII

Oklahoma St. 48, Kansas 10
Colorado 44, Kansas St. 36
Texas Tech 64, Weber St. 21
Texas 51, Florida Atlantic 17
Missouri 14, Iowa St. 0
Oklahoma 53, Baylor 24
Texas A&M 9, Nebraska 6

I thought Baylor might have put up more of a fight at home against Oklahoma, but the Sooners came out & played inspired football, crushing the Bears by almost 30 points! This of course sets up a monster BEDLAM game this week in Stillwater. The Big XII South is tricky actually, and Texas A&M can certainly get screwed in all of this. Texas A&M plays Texas this week while Oklahoma plays Oklahoma St. If Texas A&M and Oklahoma both win, it’ll set up a 3-way tie for 1st place in the Big XII South as Oklahoma St., Texas A&M, and Oklahoma will all be 6-2. The tie-breaker is the BCS standings. Right now Oklahoma St. is #9, Oklahoma is #13, and Texas A&M is #17. If Oklahoma St. beats Oklahoma then none of this matters. The Cowboys will play Nebraska in the Big XII Championship game. If Oklahoma wins and Texas A&M loses then Oklahoma goes to the Big XII Championship to play Nebraska.

If Oklahoma and Texas A&M win then the BCS standings would be the tie-breaker & it certainly looks like Oklahoma would get the nod to play in the Big XII Championship game over Texas A&M even though the Aggies beat the Sooners. The problem is that the Aggies lost to the Cowboys meaning no one of the 3 teams swept the other two.

You think that’s interesting? Don’t count out Missouri just yet in the Big XII North. With Texas A&M getting the 9-6 win over Nebraska, the Cornhuskers find themselves tied with Mizzou atop the Big XII North at 5-2. Nebraska beat Missouri in the head to head contest so Nebraska does have the tiebreaker right now, but Nebraska hosts a Colorado team this week that is on a 2-game winning streak where they have averaged 40ppg! Missouri gets a relatively weak Kansas team so all the pressure will certainly be in Lincoln on the Cornhuskers to finish the Big XII season at 6-2.

In all of this I hope that Oklahoma St. & Nebraska meet in the Big XII Championship and for the Cowboys to win. The reasoning is that it would cause Oklahoma St. to enter the postseason at 12-1. The obvious place for Oklahoma St. is the Fiesta Bowl as Big XII Champions, but if Oregon or Auburn lose then I think Oklahoma St. has a legitimate beef to get to the BCS Championship game. They have quite a bit of room to make up, but if they were to go 12-1 then I don’t see how the human polls wouldn’t have them in the top-5 & I don’t see how the computers might not have them in the top-3. If that’s the case, they should be able to bump past TCU & Boise St. & into the championship game assuming Oregon or Auburn lost a game. If Oklahoma or Texas or possibly even Nebraska was 10-1 you’d be hearing national championship talk.

BIG TEN

Penn St. 41, Indiana 24
Michigan St. 35, Purdue 31

Wisconsin 48, Michigan 28
Illinois 48, Northwestern 27

Ohio St. 20, Iowa 17

Michigan St. is getting left out in the cold & that’s horrible considering that the Spartans are going to likely end up 11-1 including a win over Wisconsin. Now consider that in this situation Wisconsin would be heading to the Rose Bowl & you can see the chagrin on Sparty’s face. The Big 10 is actually one of the more settled conferences in the country. With Illinois getting bowl eligible with their win over Northwestern, all the teams that can get bowl eligible are & now we are just waiting to see what happens at the top. This week Wisconsin hosts Northwestern, Ohio St. hosts Michigan & Michigan St. travels to Penn St. If all 3 teams win then Wisconsin goes to the Rose Bowl while Ohio St. probably gets an at-large BCS bid over Michigan St. despite the teams both being 11-1, but having never played each other this season. Michigan St. becomes huge Michigan fans now as a Wolverine win over the Buckeyes ensures the Spartans a trip to Pasadena.

Something nobody talks about is the question of Michigan St. & Ohio St. winning, but Wisconsin losing. In this case the Buckeyes still advance due to the BCS. Either way, Michigan St. can have an incredible year at 11-1 and sort of get screwed. If they in their bowl you could easily have a 12-1 Big Ten team not factor into the national championship picture at all. In fact, you could potentially have 3 12-1 Big Ten squads that have no say in the BCS Championship.

BIG EAST

Pittsburgh 17, South Florida 10
West Virginia 17, Louisville 10
Connecticut 23, Syracuse 6
Cincinnati 69, Rutgers 38

Talk about odd, Pittsburgh just got bowl eligible with their win over South Florida, but they lead the Big East at 4-1 & are in line to get to the BCS! CRAZY! The really interesting part for me in the Big East is Connecticut. They are 6-4 overall & 3-2 in the Big East, but they’ve beaten both Pittsburgh & West Virginia so if they can get to 5-2 in the conference they would own all the tiebreakers as long as Pittsburgh takes on another loss. Pittsburgh two remaining games are a home game against West Virginia in the Backyard Brawl and then a road date at Cincinnati who all of a sudden looks pretty powerful after a 69 point explosion on Rutgers. The odd part really is that the two worst teams in the Big East are probably Louisville & Rutgers. Those two teams are the two losses on UConn’s conference schedule! Go figure.

UConn’s other losses are to Temple & Michigan. Despite being 6-4, you can see they could just as easily be 10-0. On the other hand, Michigan might be the 6th best team in the Big 10 & they murdered UConn. The Big East might absolutely suck, but I’m still pulling for UConn to finish 8-4, win the Big East and get to the BCS. For the most part, nobody thinks the Big East deserves automatic consideration into the BCS. I suppose they have a legitimate point about that. Still, I’d like to see Randy Edsall get to a BCS Game. Without question, the Big East is a mess & why not have one of the really good guys benefit?

PAC 10

Washington 24, UCLA 7
Stanford 48, California 14

Oregon St. 36, USC 7

A really tough loss for USC. Despite not playing in a bowl game, the Trojans did have 13 games on the schedule meaning they could have gotten to double-digit wins at 10-3. The blow out loss to the Beavers means the best they can do now is 9-4 & that’s if they beat UCLA & Notre Dame to end the season.

The real drama here is Oregon St. The Beavers are the best 5-5 team in the nation without question, but they’ve really gotten themselves into a pickle here. To be honest, I can see how Oregon St. lost to both Boise St. & TCU. That is OK, but the other losses to Washington St., Washington & UCLA are just unacceptable. Those 3 losses have put Oregon St. at 5-5 instead of 8-2. That means the Beavers are fighting for the bowl lives needing another win to get the magic 6 wins for bowl eligibility. The problem is that Oregon St.’s two remaining games are a road game against 10-1 Stanford & a home game against 10-0 Oregon! Their remaining opponents are a combined 20-1! Seeing Oregon struggle with California in Berkeley has to be a little cause for concern for the Ducks. Luckily for Oregon, they don’t get Oregon St. right away.

The Pac 10 is settled to the degree that Oregon wins out then they win the Pac 10 & play for the BCS Championship, but there are a few landmines that can determine a lot of what happens in the conference & all of those landmines involve Oregon St.

Something else needs to be mentioned here. If Stanford wins out at 11-1 there is talk that they won’t make it to the BCS & that would be a true travesty. We can talk all day long about this & that, but if Oregon goes 12-0 & plays in the BCS Championship & Stanford goes 11-1 then the Cardinal have a legitimate beef at being the #2 team in the country. Worst case is that they are #3, but if Auburn wins out & Oregon beats Auburn in the BCS while Stanford wins their bowl and finishes at 12-1, who is to say Stanford truly isn’t the #2 team in the nation? The 2nd best team in the country not playing in a BCS game? That’s absurd. Stanford deserves it. Andrew Luck deserves. Jim Harbaugh deserves. Let’s hope the BCS does the right thing & gets Stanford an at-large bid.

SEC

Alabama 63, Georgia St. 7
South Carolina 69, Troy 24
Florida 48, Appalachian St. 10
LSU 43, Mississippi 36
Arkansas 38, Mississippi St. 31
Tennessee 24, Vanderbilt 10

A couple of thoughts here. LSU is now 10-1 for crying out loud! They have to be one of the worst 10-1 teams in the history of college football! You watch their games & can’t figure out how they are winning. Be that as it may, they’ll get a significant test this week against Arkansas which will determine if the Tigers get to 11-1 which is INSANE! It doesn’t really matter at this point because Auburn is the SEC West champions & will face South Carolina in the SEC Championship, but LSU getting to 11-1 is incredible. They’ll definitely get to the BCS with an 11-1 record.

The interesting part for me is if Arkansas beats LSU. If the Razorbacks manage to win & Alabama loses then a few things happen. Right now the BCS standings have LSU at #5, Alabama at #10 & Arkansas at #11. If Arkansas & Auburn win, then Auburn will be 12-0 & everything will be right with the world, but it also means Alabama is at 9-3, Arkansas is at 10-2 & LSU is at 10-2. The big question then becomes where does Arkansas stand? At 10-2, the Razorbacks would be the #2 team in the SEC West & you’d have to think they’d jump both LSU & Alabama in the BCS standings. If that were to happen doesn’t it seem logical that the BCS would take 2 SEC teams into the BCS? If Alabama is stuck with 3-losses and Arkansas just beat LSU, doesn’t it makes sense for the Hogs to backdoor their way into the BCS? It’s likely to happen unless Auburn gets to 12-0 but loses to South Carolina in the SEC Championship game meaning the Gamecocks get to the Sugar Bowl & Auburn takes an at-large BCS bid at 12-1.

The other thought about the SEC that is interesting is Georgia & Tennessee. The Vols under new coach Derek Dooley had a BRUTAL early season schedule that was definitely going to put them in a hole, but 3 final games against Mississippi, Vanderbilt & Kentucky could put the Volunteers at 6-6 & bowl eligible! It would be a tremendous accomplishment in my opinion for the new HC in Knoxville & I’m hoping Tennessee can get a home win over Kentucky to get to 6-6. Georgia also sits at 5-6 needing a season ending win to get bowl eligible. They’ll host Georgia Tech in a pretty big rivalry game. Georgia Tech has been a bit disappointing this season, but if Georgia plays like they did against Auburn 2-weeks ago then I think the DAWGS get to bowl eligibility.

NON-AQ CONFERENCES AND NOTRE DAME

Notre Dame 27, Army 3
Utah 38, San Diego St. 34
BYU 40, New Mexico 7

Air Force 35, UNLV 20

Boise St. 51, Fresno St. 0

Nevada 52, New Mexico St. 6
Hawaii 41, San Jose St. 7

The win over Army makes the Irish a bowl eligible 6-5 which is a pretty big accomplishment for the Irish given all the injuries & off the field issues Brian Kelly has had to deal with in his first year at South Bend. They still have a road game at USC which is entirely winnable for ND if they play like they have played the last few weeks. Remember that Pete Carroll was 6-6 in his first season at USC. If Kelly can get to 6-6 he’ll have matched Carroll’s mark & if ND can win their bowl game (which shouldn’t be too tough) then he can surpass Carroll by a half game & a full win.

The other big news is Boise St.’s convincing 51-0 pounding of Fresno St. The Bulldogs were one of the tougher opponents for Boise down the stretch so a humiliating 51-0 blowout looks good not only to the human voters, but also to the computers as Fresno St. is a worthy opponent. Boise still trails TCU in the BCS standings, but all of the teams that support both TCU & Boise St. won so nothing changes really. The big question will be whether a win over Nevada can jump Boise St. over TCU in the BCS Standings. Remember that if Oregon wins out, then the Rose Bowl is required to take a non-AQ school which means they’ll take the higher of Boise St. & TCU to play in Pasadena. Will a huge win over Nevada be enough to catapult Boise past TCU?

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November 22, 2010 - Posted by | ACC, BCS, Big 10, Big East, Big XII, Pac 10, SEC, Week 12

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