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2014 NCAA WEEK 13 – GAMES OF THE WEEK

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Huge game for both squads! I really hope we get USC wearing their red jerseys while UCLA wears their blue jerseys! I don’t think there is a prettier scene in college football than when those 2 face off in their colored jerseys! Both the Trojans & Bruins are still in the hunt for the P12 South division. The road is clearer for UCLA. If they win out they win the South. For USC, they’ll need a little help. This is their last conference game, but a win here puts the Trojans at 7-2. The only way they wouldn’t be able to win their division is if Arizona St. won out as well. The Sun Devils beat the Trojans earlier this season so if both teams finish 7-2 in conference play, the tiebreaker would go to Arizona St.
The next stop on the Melvin Gordon Heisman tour is Iowa City where the Badgers will strap it on to take on an Iowa team that is always playing somewhat of a Jekyl & Hyde role. Iowa is a really tough football team to beat at home so Wisconsin could have their hands full. The Badgers aren’t completely out of the woods just yet. Their final 2 games won’t be easy against Iowa & Minnesota, but the B1G West is theirs if they can win both games. That would set them up at 10-2 to face Ohio State. Can an 11-2 Wisconsin team make the playoffs? Iowa has plenty to play for. If they win out & Minnesota loses just one of their final 2 games, the Hawkeyes would win the B1G West.
The SEC slate takes a beather in Week 13, but it goes to show the quality of the conference when I can say this is an off week for the SEC & we still get a game like Ole Miss/Arkansas. Huge game here for the Rebels. Arkansas got a taste of what it was like winning in the SEC with last week’s 17-0 win over LSU. Remember that LSU beat Ole Miss & this game is in Arkansas so the Hogs could have a really good shot at picking up their 2nd win in SEC play in as many weeks! For Ole Miss, they can still win the West. They needed Alabama to beat Mississippi St. which happened, but now they need to beat Arkansas & Mississippi St. & hope Auburn plays out of its mind in 2 weeks in Tuscaloosa.
After losing a home game to Indiana, I didn’t think Missouri would win at South Carolina. They did. After getting shutout by Georgia, I didn’t think Missouri would go on the road & beat Florida. They did. After Texas A&M beat Auburn at Auburn, I didn’t think Missouri would go into College Station & beat the Aggies. They did. Missouri is primed to win the SEC East but their final 2 games could be their toughest. A road game in Knoxville won’t be easy & their season finale at home comes against a very dangerous Arkansas squad. Even so, the odds are VERY GOOD Missouri wins out, finishes 10-2 (7-1) & wins their 2nd consecutive SEC East title! If Mizzou wins the SEC, do they get in?
At 5-5, the Wolverines need to win one of their last 2 to get bowl eligible. Next week they play Ohio St. in Columbus which is a most certain slaughter so that means this week is MUST WIN if Michigan wants to get bowl eligible. Maryland won’t be the easiest of foes although they are coming off a blowout loss to Michigan State. There hasn’t been a ton of talk coming out of Ann Arbor about the potential firing of Brady Hoke. We know now that Will Muschamp will not be back with the Gators next season & if that is the case then I can’t see Hoke surviving. If Maryland wins Michigan ends the season 5-7 which is brutal. Two HUGE jobs are opening up with Michigan & Flordia!
Speaking of job openings…..after losing at home 43-40 in OT to a terrible Northwestern team, the heat under Brian Kelly’s seat in South Bend has to be warming up just a bit. The Irish started the season 6-0 but have lost 3 of their last 4! Finishing up the season against Louisville & USC could mean the Irish finish the year 7-5, losing 4 straight & 5 of their last 6 games. That would give ND bowl eligibility but almost ZERO momentum going into the offseason. The Irish have big problems. The defense is terrible & Everett Golson can’t stop turning the ball over. The worst part is that you can argue ND should have lost to North Carolina, Stanford, and maybe Navy. Is this really a 4-7 team masquerading?
A pretty cool game. Kansas St. is still in the Big XII race believe it or not. They would need to win out & have TCU lose to either Texas or Iowa St., but if those things happened, then Kansas St. could win the Big XII & finish 10-2. I can’t see any way they’d make the playoffs, but a conference title is worth a lot. I still think West Virginia should be in the conversation as best team in the Big XII. They beat Baylor & TCU needed a last second FG to beat the Mountaineers. I would lose to see West Virginia beat up K-State in Morgantown & at least make an argument they are the 3rd best team in the Big XII. If you had season tickets in Morgantown this year you’ve been able to watch some amazing football.
Both teams have a tremendous amount to play for. Minnesota gets Nebraska & Wisconsin to finish the season & even with the Ohio St. loss last week, if the Gophers win out they’ll win the B1G West. The Cornhuskers are coming off a humiliating defeat to the Badgers, but they can win the division too. If Wisconsin can lose a game while Nebraska wins out, then Nebraska would be B1G West champions and get a date with Ohio State. A subplot to this game is Ameer Abdullah running against David Cobb. It’s not Abdullah/Gordon but Cobb has been a beast for Minnesota this year & if Nebraska’s rush defense last week is any indication, Cobb could be in for a huge day with a Minny victory!
Amazingly enough, the Utes still have a shot to win the P12 South. If they can win out while Arizona St. loses their last 2 games then the opportunity is there provided USC loses to UCLA & UCLA loses to Stanford. There are so many moving parts in the P12 South that anything could happen, but major kudos to Kyle Whittingham & his staff for making Utah relevant in the Pac 12. It took him a couple of years to get to this point, but moving forward Utah should pick up more momentum which isn’t great news for the rest of the Pac 12. Of course Arizona is in the thick of things as well & while the P12 South isn’t the SEC West just yet, it’s not hard to envision them being there in a year or 2.
While this isn’t the hardwood, there is always some type of rivalry between Duke & North Carolina. It’s even made more abundant now that the Blue Devils are actually pretty good at football behind HC David Cutcliffe. Duke actually has quite a bit to play for. Georgia Tech’s conference season is over with the Yellow Jackets finishing 6-2. Duke is currently 4-2 with UNC & Wake Forest coming to Durham. If Duke loses one of those games then GT wins the Coastal & will face Florida State. If not then we get back-to-back years where Florida St. & Duke play for the ACC Championship. I’m pulling for the Tar Heels in this one because I think Georgia Tech’s gimmicky offense could be tricky for FSU.
This would seem like a blowout game for the Seminoles, but Boston College has actually been pretty good this year. If the Eagles can get RBs Tyler Murphy, Jon Hilliman & Myles Willis going, they could dominate time of possession & make it difficult for Jameis Winston to beat them because he’ll never be on the field. Note too that BC has some significant wins. Beating USC shouldn’t be overlooked & what is interesting about BC is that they actually play better on the road. They are 4-0 on the road this year yet just 2-4 at home which is another mark in their favor. I say all this only to see Florida St. beat BC 55-10, but at least there are some decent trends to show this might be a good game. Maybe the Noles luck runs out.
Both teams come into this game 5-5, but I’m rooting for Sonny Dykes & the Bears. Dykes has California exceeding expectations this year & if 2014 is any sign of what is to come out of Berkeley then the P12 North might be getting just as strong as the South with Oregon, Cal, Stanford & Washington. This game actually has bowl implications as well. Both teams need another win to get bowl eligible. After this game Stanford is on the road to UCLA while Cal hosts BYU. It would seem that this might be Stanford’s last chance to get bowl eligible. With Cal play so well they should be able to upend BYU, but that isn’t a guaranteed game so a lot is on the line & this is a huge rivalry. Underrated game.
Another one of those interesting type of games with teams on the bowl bubble. The Nittany Lions are already bowl eligible at 6-4, but if they want to avoid a 6-6 season then they need to beat Illinois as their season finale comes against Michigan State. Illinois is sitting at 4-6 with their last two games being this one at home & then a road game at Northwestern which in some ways is like a home game for the Illinois contingent. From a big picture standpoint it would be great to see Tim Beckman get a win here & get the Illini a step closer to a bowl game. He’s in his 3rd year & if he can get to 6-6 it would show some steady improvement & buy him more time with the program. It would be cool to see Illinois good again.
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November 17, 2014 - Posted by | Arizona, Arkansas, Big Games, Boston College, California, Duke, Florida St., Illinois, Iowa, Kansas St., Louisville, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Must See Games, Nebraska, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Penn St., Stanford, Tennessee, UCLA, USC, Utah, Week 13, West Virginia, Wisconsin

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