Fantasy Gunslinger

Football with an Emphasis on Fantasy & Gambling

2016 NCAA FOOTBALL – BOWL SEASON PREVIEW!

AWAY QUICK THOUGHTS HOME
Computer Hope New Mexico Bowl: New Mexico in the New Mexico Bowl seems fitting. You really can’t say enough about what a tremendous job Bob Davie has done for the Lobos. New Mexico was a combined 3-33 in the 3-years before Davie took over. How he has them at potentially a 9-4 season with back-to-back bowl games in his 5th year. As for the game, New Mexico has the nation’s best rush offense so UTSA will need to figure out a way to stop it if they’re to win. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Las Vegas Bowl: Talk about a consolation bowl for early watching! The 9-3 Cougars take on the 10-3 Aztecs! Both of these teams were thought to win their respective conferences. Houston didn’t but SD State did get their revenge win over Wyoming to take the Mountain West. Tune in for Houston QB Gary Ward & DT Ed Oliver. Both guys have been outstanding this season. The Cougs won’t have Tom Herman but this is a fantastic early game. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Camellia Bowl: Jason Candle did an outstanding job in his first year as HC of Toledo. The Rockets went 9-3 and won the MAC East. Their 3 losses came against W.Michigan, Ohio & BYU. Not bad at all. Appalachian St. has an outstanding defense. At 9-3 they have 2 losses to Tennessee and Miami-FL! It’ll be interesting to see if the Mountaineers can put a stop to Toledo’s Cody Thompson, Logan Woodside & Kareem Hunt. This game will be very compelling. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cure Bowl: Somewhat of a ho-hum bowl game as 6-6 UCF takes on 7-5 Arkansas State. UCF has a couple of tremendous corners in Shaquill Griffin and DJ Killings. They’ve been a terror to QBs all season long & that shouldn’t change. Helping them is OLB Shaquem Griffin who has totaled 11 sacks and 19 TFL on the season. Ark State is mostly a running team although they don’t do it particularly well. I’d tune in for the Knights defensive playmakers. Computer Hope
Computer Hope New Orleans Bowl: A couple of 6-6 teams going at it from CUSA and the Sun Belt conference. Obviously this is going to be one of those games that nobody is paying particular attention to but both teams feature a pretty good running back. Southern Miss’ Ito Smith ran for 1300+ yards & 15TD averaging 5.5ypc, while ULL’s Elijah McGuire ran for 1,028 yards & 7TD. This is HC Mark Hudspeth’s 5th bowl in 6 years as HC for the Ragin’ Cajuns. He’s done well. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Miami Beach Bowl: This game is played in Marlins Park which is the home of the Miami Marlins which is pretty cool. This is a bad matchup for C.Michigan. After a nice 3-0 start which saw them beat Oklahoma St., CMU went just 3-5 in MAC play & 3-6 in their final 9. Tulsa’s offense is prolific! They have a couple of thousand yard rushers, a thousand yard receiver & a three thousand yard passer. I think Tulsa scores 50+ in this game & dominates. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Boca Raton Bowl: Every time I hear the words Boca Raton I always think of Episode 9 of Season 1 of The Sopranos entitled Boca about Junior Soprano going down to Boca with one of his girlfriends, Bobbi Sanfillipo. The entire episode revolves around Junior’s amazing cunnilingus skills that eventually gets out. The part I always liked best is the end when Junior shoves Bobbi’s head in pie. Oh the game! Lots of scoring here with two good offenses. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Poinsettia Bowl: This is one of the underrated bowls I’m interested in. Wyoming HC Craig Bohl did a helluva job this year with the Cowboys. Nobody picked them to be this good, but Wyoming pulled off a coup to win the MW Mountain division & posted wins over Boise St. and San Diego State! BYU is tough. They went 8-4 but their 4 losses came by a total of 8 points! The Cougars are THIS CLOSE to being 12-0! Kalani Sitake did a GREAT job at BYU! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Idaho Potato Bowl: What a job Paul Petrino has done in Moscow! The Vandals were 3-21 the two years before Petrino took over and in his first two seasons they were even worse at 2-21. Last year they improved to 4-8 & in Petrino’s 4th season the Vandals are bowl bound at 7-5! They also went 6-1 in their last 7 games! They’ll have it tough with Colorado State. The Rams can score with a very balanced offense. Tough game for Idaho but great year. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Bahamas Bowl: If Old Dominion doesn’t lose on the road to W.Kentucky, the Monarchs finish 10-2 and undefeated in CUSA. The probably win the conference title and get to 11-2. HC Bobby Wilder has this program humming & I wouldn’t doubt if they become THE premier team in CUSA. A win here makes them 10-3 on the season & I expect them to take care of E.Michigan. EMU HC Chris Creighton was 3-21 his 1st 2 seasons. This year EMU went 7-5!! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Armed Forces Bowl: How is this for disappointing! If Navy blows out Temple in the AAC Championship game, they had an outside shot at jumping W.Michigan & getting to the Cotton Bowl to play Wisconsin. Instead the Middies are playing Louisiana Tech in the Armed Forces Bowl. The Bulldogs had a solid year but their defense is suspect & if Navy comes to play they should have no issues forcing the issue on offense. Win & Navy finishes at 10-4. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Dollar General Bowl: Frank Solich has done an outstanding job with the Bobcats. Western Michigan got all the publicity this season, and rightly so, but Ohio’s 8-5 record is a bit misleading. The Bobcats never lost a game by more than 9 points and 4 of those 5 losses were by 7 points or less. That 8-5 record is close to 12-1! Troy is exactly the same. The Trojans had a great 9-3 season but 2 losses were close so 9-3 could be 11-1. This should be a very good bowl. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Hawaii Bowl: And this is where we make the case for too many bowl games as the 6-7 Rainbows get in via exemption to play Middle Tennessee State. A lot of credit has to go to Hawaii 1st year HC Nick Rolovich for getting Hawaii into a bowl given that over the past 4 seasons the Rainbows have an 11-39 record. Hawaii’s last bowl game was in 2010 & their last bowl win was in 2006. Tune in for MTSU QB Brent Stockstill & RB I’Tavius Murray. They’re big! Computer Hope
Computer Hope St. Petersburg Bowl: LOVE THIS GAME! Talk about a wild season for Miami-OH! They lose their first 6 games, but win their final 6 to get bowl eligible! Some of that was schedule, but the switch to QB Gus Ragland made a HUGE difference. Ragland is 6-0 as a starter this season with 15TD to ZERO picks! Nobody picked Miami-OH to get to 6-6 & now they get an SEC team in a bowl! Outside of WMU/Wisconsin, this is the MAC bowl game to watch! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Quick Lane Bowl: Potentially a snoozer, Maryland and Boston College are a couple of high major squads coming off 6-6 regular seasons. These are a couple of teams still finding their way. Steve Addazio at BC is still figuring out his rushing attack without Andre Williams and Tyler Murphy. DJ Durkin obviously has a defensive reputation & the Terps improved defensively but still have a ways to go. The bowl is nice here but both teams actually need the reps. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Independence Bowl: The funny thing about Vanderbilt is that their 6-6 record could easily be 10-2. The Commodores have some excellent wins on the resume. They beat MTSU, WKU, Ole Miss, Tennessee and Georgia. Four of their 6 losses were close! Derek Mason has done an outstanding job! They’ll be competitive. I want to see which NC State shows up. The NC State against Clemons & Florida St? Or the NC State against Louisville? I hope the former. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Heart of Dallas Bowl: The Black Knights get to their first bowl since 2010! If you feel like you are having deja vu, don’t worry. These two teams actually played each other on October 22 when North Texas upended Army 35-18! Making matters worse? North Texas got to a bowl game by exemption given their 5-7 record. That’s too bad. Army deserves better. How amazing is it that the Knights have wins over both Temple & Navy? What are the odds? Computer Hope
Computer Hope Military Bowl: Temple wins the AAC so they get Wake Forest in the Military Bowl? No wonder Matt Rhule left out in a hurry for Baylor!! This feels like a huge slap in the face to the Owls. Temple is on a 7-game winning streak. They are 10-3 & a conference champion. Wake Forest is 6-6 & 2-6 in their last 8 games. They finished 5th in the ACC Atlantic with a 3-5 conference record. I get the conference tie ins but this is a huge opportunity lost for college football. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Holiday Bowl: This should be a pretty cool game regarding contrasts in styles. Minnesota wants to control the clock with their running game while Wazzou obviously wants to light up the scoreboard with their passing attack. What’s interesting here is the Gophers have a very good run D but a suspect pass D. I wonder if they’ll try to rush 3-4 and drop 7-8 and dare the Cougars to run the football? Teams have tried this and the Cougs have made them pay! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cactus Bowl: A couple of close road losses to Wyoming & Air Force prevented the Broncos from a 12-0 & potentially 13-0 season which would have robbed Western Michigan of the Cotton Bowl. WMU is a better story so I’m glad it worked out, but Boise has to be fairly happy it was able to keep Bryan Harsin. There was some rumor about a move to Oregon which would have been tough. A win here make Harsin 32-8 in his first 3 years on the blue turf. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Pinstripe Bowl: This is a pretty neat bowl game that will be played in Yankee Stadium. I thought the Panthers had a good shot at winning the Coastal this year but 3 close losses took them from 11-1 to 8-4. The same could be said for Northwestern. I thought the Wildcats became the team nobody wanted to face in the Big 10. A couple of odd losses early & a loss to Minnesota took a potential 9-3 & made it 6-6. Both teams are going to try & run the ball. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Russell Athletic Bowl: OLD SCHOOL BIG EAST!!! I love this game. Couple of interesting subplots here. Miami-FL isn’t great but the Mountaineers are still looking for some validation of their 10-2 record. A win here to get to 11-2 at least shows they can win outside the Big XII. For the Canes, they were 0-3 in close games so that 8-4 is VERY close to 11-1. They’ve won 4-straight & really want to go out on a high note. Brad Kaaya can improve his stock here. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Foster Farms Bowl: Getting better by subtraction? Former Indiana HC Kevin Wilson led the Hoosiers to back-to-back bowl games for the first time in 25 seasons yet resigned over philosophical differences and DC Tom Allen takes over. I don’t think Hoosier Nation could be any happier with Allen as HC and some think it was a preemptive move to keep Allen from taking a different HC job. What a wild ride in Bloomington! GO HOOSIERS! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Texas Bowl: This is an intriguing game on paper given that both teams are 8-4, but this has the feel to me of a K-State blowout win potentially because I’m not sure a lot of the A&M players will feel like this one is worth playing. Guys like Myles Garrett and Daeshon Hall have nothing really to gain here. On the other hand, would Texas A&M dare to make a move away from Kevin Sumlin should the Aggies get blown out and turn in another 8-5 season? Computer Hope
Computer Hope Birmingham Bowl: Outstanding season for the Bulls and former HC Willie Taggart. Unfortunately Taggart has taken his talents to Eugene Oregon as the next HC of the Ducks so a new era in USF football starts with Charlie Strong! I love the move for South Florida because I think Strong is an OUTSTANDING recruiter and putting him in Florida should put a lot of teams on notice. It would be pretty cool to see USF finish the season 11-2. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Belk Bowl: This should be a really fun game. In his first season at Virginia Tech, HC Justin Fuente has really done some solid things with the Hokies offense making more of a run-centric unit and that will pay massive dividends down the road given Bud Foster’s defensive prowess. It’s not unlike what Arkansas does under Bret Bielema. VT will utilize their pass a bit more, but you get the gist. I really hope VT gets that 10th win but Arkansas needs a W too. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Alamo Bowl: This is the first game you can really start looking at conference strengths. By all accounts, Oklahoma St. was the 2nd best team in the Big XII. I’d say the Buffaloes were the 3rd best team in the Pac 12 behind Washington & USC. Does a #3 Pac 12 team beat the #2 Big XII team? The big matchup here will be the UC secondary against Mason Rudolph. I don’t think the Cowboys are going to able to air it out & Coach Mac gets the Buffs to 11-3! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Liberty Bowl: I think some people are a bit disappointed in Kirby Smart’s first season as HC of the Bulldogs but Georgia’s 7-5 record includes 3 games that were lost by a total of 4 points. The ball bounces the other way & UGA is 10-2 & SEC East champs. They beat UNC & Auburn. I don’t think Nick Chubb was 100% all season & Jacob Eason was a true frosh QB. Leonard Floyd & Jordan Jenkins were huge losses. Win or lose here, Georgia did well. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Sun Bowl: Not saying this was a wasted season because the Tar Heels could still get a bowl win & finish 9-4, but when you look at back at their season, the Tar Heels should be 11-1. That would have won the Coastal & given UNC a good shot at New Year’s 6 bowl even if they lost to Clemson. Don’t dismiss Stanford in this one. I think the Cardinal is looking for respect & getting to 10-3 could potentially put them in the final AP Top-15. Love this game. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Music City Bowl: Games like this are sort of neat because both are historically great programs and if you look at the jerseys alone it’s cool to see them, but this isn’t the mid-1990s. Nebraska is Big 10 #6 going up against The Vols are are SEC #6/7. What could make this game interesting is a blowout win for the Huskers. Butch Jones is on thin ice as it is. Could a blowout win for Nebraska combined with the 49ers firing Chip Kelly lead Kelly to Tennessee? Computer Hope
Computer Hope Arizona Bowl: It’s pretty cool for South Alabama to get to a bowl game even if it is with a 6-6 record, but this is a massive mismatch that the Falcons should take advantage of. Air Force is 8-4 and on a roll having won 5 straight including wins over Colorado St. and Boise State. They have one of the most dominant rushing attacks in the nation & South Alabama is going to be overwhelmed when they see it. This opened with AF -15. They cover. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Orange Bowl: I’d expect Michigan to come out and dominate this game. Florida St. is better than their 9-3 record, and as talented as Dalvin Cook is at tailback, I have a hard time believing he’s going to get away with running against Michigan when Ohio State couldn’t. If Deondre Francois tries to air it out, it’s turnover season & the Wolverines really start blowing it out. This might be the sexiest game outside of the playoffs, but Michigan kills it. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Citrus Bowl: Love the storylines here. For LSU this is a chance for Ed Orgeron to really put this program at 100% going forward. It’s also a chance for Lenoard Fournette to boost his draft status & for Derrius Guice to start a Heisman campaign in 2017. For Louisville it’s a chance to end the season on a high note & a chance for Lamar Jackson to prove what a great player he is by taking on and beating by far the best defense he’s seen all season. Can’t wait. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Taxslayer Bowl: Great bounce back season for Paul Johnson and the Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech was 3-9 last year & has a shot at 9-4 this year with a win over Kentucky. It was also a solid year for the Wildcats who got to a bowl game for the first time under HC Mark Stoops and beat Louisville to finish the regular season. I think this is a big jump off game for the 2017 season as both teams return a lot of players & should be even better in 2017. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Peach Bowl: Chris Petersen is an exceptionally creative coach so the thing to watch here is how well the Huskies can play in the 1st quarter while Alabama could potentially be taken off guard. At some point in time talent is going to settle in and the Tide have a GIGANTIC advantage here, but if UW gets out to a 14 point lead, can they hold on for dear life? This is best case for Washington. Worst case is that they’ve never seen anything like Bama’s front-7 and lose by 30. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Fiesta Bowl: I’m not a fan of this game. I understand the reasoning behind putting Ohio St. in the playoffs but Penn St. beat them and won the Big 10 championship. I think the Nittany Lions got a raw deal which taints the playoff regardless. A lot of talk here about how this game is Deshaun Watson against JT Barrett, but I think Clemson’s defense is going to be tough & the Tigers have so many weapons on offense against a fairly young defense. Still should be a great game. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Outback Bowl: This is a great game for Iowa to end the season on a high note. The Hawkeyes have won 3 straight games which includes wins over Michigan and Nebraska. Their 8-4 record is a lot closer to 11-1 given their close losses than people imagine & it’s easy to forget that some thought Iowa had the schedule this year to set up another 12-0 run. Finishing 9-4 is great albeit somewhat disappointing. As for the Gators, they really need to avoid another late season collapse. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cotton Bowl: ROW THE BOAT!!! The Western Michigan story is a fantastic one, but this is a situation for Wisconsin that is almost unwinnable. Lose and you lost to a MAC school. Win and all you did was beat a MAC school. It’s interesting to note that WMU is 2-0 against Big 10 schools this year having beat Illinois and Northwestern by a combined 25 points. The Badgers beat both by a combined 59 points. It would be so cool to see PJ Fleck pull of a 14-0 season! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Rose Bowl: Two teams couldn’t be any hotter coming into this one. Penn St. has won 9 straight games including wins over Ohio St. & Wisconsin in the Big 10 championship game. USC has won 8 straight games including wins over Colorado, Washington, Notre Dame & UCLA. I really think these teams are out to prove they should have been in the playoffs. USC beat both UW & Colorado. Penn St. beat Ohio State. This might be the best bowl outside of the national championship. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Sugar Bowl: Love this game. If the season started tomorrow and the Tigers were healthy, knowing what we know now, I think they’d go 11-1. War Eagle has a top-5 defense that is massively underrated in my opinion. Their running game is also exceptional so Auburn can put a lot of pressure on Oklahoma. I think OU is playing for respect. A win over Auburn legitimizes them as a team that maybe should have been in the playoffs. A loss here hurts the Big XII quite a bit. Computer Hope
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December 16, 2016 Posted by | Air Force, Alabama, Appalachian St., Arkansas, Arkansas St., Army, Auburn, Baylor, Boise St., Boston College, Bowl Season, BYU, Central Michigan, Clemson, Colorado, Colorado St., Eastern Michigan, Florida, Florida St., Georgia, Georgia Tech, Hawaii, Houston, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas St., Kentucky, Louisiana Lafayette, Louisiana Tech, Louisville, LSU, Maryland, Memphis, Miami-FL, Miami-OH, Michigan, Middle Tennessee St., Minnesota, Mississippi St., Navy, NC State, NCAA, NCAA Playoffs, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Texas, Northwestern, Ohio, Ohio St, Oklahoma, Oklahoma St., Old Dominion, Penn St., Pittsburgh, San Diego St., South Alabama, South Carolina, South Florida, Southern Miss, Stanford, TCU, Temple, Tennessee, Texas AM, Toledo, Troy, Tulsa, UCF, USC, Utah, UTSA, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, Washington, Washington St., West Virginia, Western Kentucky, Western Michigan, Wisconsin, Wyoming | Leave a comment

2016 NCAA FOOTBALL WEEK 5 – BIG GAMES

Week 5 already!! This is crazy! I hate how fast the college football goes by. After this week there will be some teams that are one win away from bowl eligibility. That sounds crazy but it’s true. Let’s get to this week best 10 games.

AWAY QUICK THOUGHTS HOME
Computer Hope Clemson’s win over Georgia Tech last week was nice & the Tigers defense came out to play, but playing against an offense like Tech’s is inherently difficult because of the blocking scheme employed by those triple option types of offenses. We’ll really see how Clemson does this week after playing the Jackets last week. Lamar Jackson has to be licking his chops at this one. Louisville has destroyed everything in their path but this is the first real road test for the Ville! Computer Hope
Computer Hope If Wisconsin walks into Ann Arbor and does to the Wolverines what they did the Spartans last week, how are they not the #1 team in the nation with wins over LSU, Michigan and Michigan St. with NONE of them coming in Camp Randall!? I’d like to say Wisconsin hasn’t seen a rushing attack quite like Michigan’s yet, but they locked up Leonard Fournette for crying out loud. Michigan is averaging 52PPG. They aren’t going to come close to that even if they win. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Huge game for both teams and probably the game that will decide the Pac 12 North. Washington was almost caught sleeping last week down in Arizona as they needed OT to pull out a win over the Wildcats because they were looking ahead to Stanford. Stanford on the other hand hasn’t been that great. Sure they’ve won all their games, but those wins haven’t exactly moved the meter. There’s no dominance to this Cardinal team. A win by either vaults them in the rankings. Computer Hope
Computer Hope It would be great if Tennessee could put together two halves of a football game so we could see how dominant the Vols can be. We were somewhat saying the same thing about Ole Miss last week before Georgia came into Oxford. Ole Miss didn’t disappoint taking Georgia to the woodshed early & often. Tennessee has the same opportunity this week & Nick Chubb might not be playing. Beat Georgia and there really isn’t anyone left in the East to challenge Tennessee. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Isn’t it amazing that TCU is ranked despite beating South Dakota St., SMU & Iowa St. but losing to Arkansas? This is a good game for Oklahoma to get back on track. The Frogs do a few things well, but defensively this is not one of Gary Patterson’s best units. Oklahoma should be able to exploit that and flex a bit on the TCU defense. I don’t think Oklahoma can tank the season simply because they have 2 losses. They still could win the Big XII & hope for a miracle. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Nobody is really talking about Memphis, but the Tigers beat Ole Miss last year 37-24 en route to starting the season 8-0 & being ranked #15. You’d think Memphis would be down a bit after losing their HC (Justin Fuente) & QB (Paxton Lynch), but new HC Mike Norvell has this team humming. In their first 3 games, the Tigers have outscored their opponents 155-27! QB Riley Ferguson is playing well, Memphis runs the ball well & the defense is great! Very interesting. Computer Hope
Computer Hope This should be a great game not many people will see. Utah has a window in the Pac 12 South that could catapult them into national contention if they keep winning. Cal has shown an ability to get loose at home with wins over Texas and Hawaii. If the Bears can allow Davis Webb to play within himself the Bears could win this thing. Cal hasn’t faced a defense as staunch as Utah’s though. If Utah can win this one they could be 8-0 before hosting Washington on 10/29! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cool opportunity for the Hurricanes to once again show they are better than the team that just beat their opponent. Earlier in the year Tennessee needed OT to beat Appalachian St. in Knoxville. Miami went into Boone & hammered the Mounties 45-10. Last week Clemson went into Atlanta & beat GT 26-7. This week Miami-FL will follow & it’ll be interesting to see if “THE U” can win by a more convincing score. We’re still in wait & see mode with Miami at this point. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Texas had an extra week to stew over their road loss to California, but I’m excited to see what the Longhorns can do against Oklahoma St. in Stillwater. Last week the Cowboys went on the road to Baylor & played the Bears pretty tough despite losing. The win over Notre Dame doesn’t look so hot but it’s still hard to deny the talent on Texas’ roster & how exciting the offense & defense could be. Like Oklahoma, Texas still has a shot at winning the Big XII championship. Computer Hope
Computer Hope How cool is it that Navy and Air Force are 3-0 and facing off! This will be a great game if you like rushing offense, but I’m excited for this because of Air Force. Navy has Houston, Memphis & Notre Dame on the schedule, but if the Falcons can get a win here, they could be 11-0 when they host Boise St. on November 25th. Get by Boise St. and they’d get San Diego St. in the MW championship game. There is a lot going on outside the Power 5 with a few teams. Computer Hope

September 27, 2016 Posted by | Air Force, Big Games, California, Clemson, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Louisville, Memphis, Miami-FL, Michigan, Mississippi, Must See Games, Navy, NCAA, Oklahoma, Oklahoma St., Stanford, TCU, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, Week 5, Wisconsin | Leave a comment

2015 NCAA BOWL GAMES PREVIEW

TEAM QUICK THOUGHTS TEAM
Computer Hope Las Vegas Bowl: The people in Vegas couldn’t have gotten a better bowl game than the HOLY WAR! After the 2013 season, this game was supposed to be on hiatus until 2016 due to Utah joining the Pac 12 & BYU going independent, but it’s awesome we get this rivalry back! Given how each team started, I think both are probably a bit disappointed to be here. I’d expect Utah to win. They are better & BYU is dealing with the loss of their HC, Bronco Mendenhall. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Camellia Bowl: This is a cool matchup between two extremely run heavy offenses. App St.’s Marcus Cox has had a tremendous year rushing for over 1200 yards while Jalin Moore has also chipped in over 600 as his backup! AJ Ouellette & Daz’Mond Patterson aren’t quite as dominant for the Bobcats, but Ohio is a run first squad behind that duo. Expect lots of running & I’d expect a Mountaineer win which would take Appalachian St. to 11-2! A great year! Computer Hope
Computer Hope New Orleans Bowl: Sun Belt champion Arkansas St. draws CUSA-West division runner up Louisiana Tech. The Red Wolves actually come into this bowl on an 8-game winning streak having gone perfect through conference play, but this is a bad draw. While both sport prolific offenses, Arkansas St.’s defense leaves much to be desired & LA Tech can hammer you in a myriad of ways. Tune in to watch former Florida QB Jeff Driskel light it up for the Bulldogs. Computer Hope
Computer Hope New Mexico Bowl: One of the more interesting teams this season, the Lobos of New Mexico have some convincing wins over the likes of Air Force, Boise St., & Utah State but a couple of close losses to the likes of Colorado St. & San Jose St. potentially kep the Lobos from a MWC championship. New Mexico is VERY run heavy which could cause some problems, but now that the questions surrounding Rich Rodriguez have halted, I think Arizona pulls it out. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cure Bowl: Does anyone really care about this game at all? San Jose St. is 5-7 while Georgia St. is 6-6. There is absolutely no reason whatsoever to have a postseason bowl featuring 2 teams that are a combined 11-13! A couple of interesting points though. This is Georgia St.’s first ever bowl game & San Jose St.’s 10th so this is history for GA State, but did you know SJSU is 6-3 in their previous bowls? I wouldn’t have thought that. Will anyone bother to show up? Computer Hope
Computer Hope Miami Beach Bowl: Solid matchup here. It took a while for the Bulls to get going, but South Florida turned it on and went 7-1 down the stretch & finished the season as arguably the 2nd best team in the AAC behind Houston. The Hilltoppers are 11-2 & coming in as CUSA champions. WKU has a helluva program & QB Brandon Doughty has been EXCEPTIONAL this season as has WR Taywan Taylor. USF’s defense has been stingy & watch Bulls RB Marlon Mack! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Idaho Potato Bowl: Interesting matchup between the MWC & the MAC. Akron is coming on a 4-game winning streak while Utah St. has struggled to end the season going 2-4 in their last 6. Neither of these teams does anything particularly well obviously as Akron is 7-5 & Utah St. is 6-6. It will be the last game that Utah St. QB Chuckie Keeton will play in. The 41-year old 17th-year senior will finally lace them up with 3 of his grandchildren in the stands. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Boca Raton Bowl: This is only the Boca Raton’s 2nd year as a bowl, but this bowl so far has been excellent. Last year in its inaugural season, the bowl featured MAC Champion N.Illinois going up against CUSA Champion Marshall! Both teams were 11-1 & Marshall prevailed 52-23. This year Temple (10-3) plays Toledo (9-2) which is an OUTSTANDING game between two teams some thought could have been in a Big Six bowl by year’s end. Home run pairing. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Poinsettia Bowl: Bad memories for the Broncos here! The only other time Boise St. has played in the Poinsettia Bowl was back in 2008 when they came in 12-0 to play an Andy Dalton led TCU squad. Boise St. would take a 13-0 lead over the 10-2 Horned Frogs but would lose 17-16! This one won’t be as exciting as both teams come in with 8 wins, but still cool when you consider that both of these teams are 2 of the most winningest teams over the past 5 seasons. Computer Hope
Computer Hope GoDaddy Bowl: GA Southern has arguably the most prolific RB in college football. Matt Breida has ran for 1540yds/16TD this year while averaging 8.2ypc! Even more amazing is backup RB LA Ramsby ran for 700+/12TD! The MAC Champions have quite a bit of offense as well. QB Matt Johnson threw for 4700yds/43TD while WR Roger Lewis (1476yds/15TD) & RB Travis Greene (1220yds/14TD) are as explosive as they come. Lots of points here. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Bahamas Bowl: Last year C.Michigan came back from a 49-14 deficit after 3 quarters to pull to within 1 but came up short 49-48 to W.Kentucky! Nothing fancy here as both teams come in at 7-5 with balanced offenses and suspect defenses. I think WMU HC PJ Fleck is an interesting case. Western Michigan went to great lengths to keep him in Kalamazoo & his star is definitely on the rise. His 1st year the Broncos were 1-11 & now he’s got them to B2B bowls. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Hawaii Bowl: Wow! Going to Hawaii is nice and all but the Mountain West champion deserves better than the AAC’s 6th best team! Cincinnati’s rush defense is terrible while SD State’s rushing attack is ridiculously lethal behind Donnel Pumphrey & Chase Price. Throw in a top-10 defense by the 10-3 Aztecs & you have the makings of a blowout. It took SD State a bit to get warmed up, but they come in on a 9-game winning streak & should improve to 11-3. Computer Hope
Computer Hope St. Petersburg Bowl: Bob Diaco has done a great job turning around the UConn program. Last year the Huskies were 2-10 in his first year & Diaco now has them bowl bound at 6-6 including a huge win over Houston which ended the Cougars perfect season. It’s not surprising that the Huskies like to pound the ball & play nasty defense as Diaco is a defense guy. Marshall is a good matchup for UConn as they’ll have trouble scoring & stopping the run. UConn wins. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Sun Bowl: Our first Big 5 conference matchup pits the ACC against the Pac 12. This looks like ACC #5 v. Pac 12 #5. This one could get ugly. Miami-FL is going through a coaching transition as it is with Mark Richt set to take over for Al Golden but the bigger issues is Wazzou QB Luke Falk being cleared to play. The two closest offenses to Wazzou that the Canes have faced are Clemson & UNC & Miami gave up 58 & 59 to those teams respectively. The Pirate wins! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Heart of Dallas Bowl: Southern Miss had a nice season but Washington had the best defense in the Pac 12 & I think towards the end of the season the Huskies really started figuring things out. UW was 3-2 in their last 5 games & all 3 wins were HUGE blowouts. If Chris Petersen has the Huskies focused then this bowl is going to get out of hand. Southern Miss won’t have an answer for dynamic freshman duo Myles Gaskin or Jake Browning. Tune in for those two! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Pinstripe Bowl: ACC #7 v. Big 10 #9. Neither team is amazing as IU comes in at 6-6 while Duke is 7-5, but to me this game is more about Indiana’s imposition of will via their offense. Indiana can argue they almost beat Michigan, Ohio St., Michigan St. & Iowa! Those are 4 AMAZING teams. Duke shouldn’t be difficult at all by comparison which puts pressure on the Hoosiers to win this game, but Duke is solid in their own right. A sneaky good football game. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Indepedence Bowl: Frank Beamer’s last stand! Both teams are 6-6 but Tulsa gives up almost 40 points a game so I think the Hokies should be able to send Frank Beamer out a winner. It has been interesting to watch the Hokies since Michael Brewer has come back as QB. He started the last 5 games of the season & Tech went 3-2 but those 2 losses were by a combined 5 points to Duke & UNC. If Brewer is healthy you almost wonder if Tech would have gone 11-1. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Foster Farms Bowl: In case you were wondering this used to be the Fight Hunger Bowl which used to be the Emerald Bowl which used to be the San Francisco Bowl. This is one of those bowl games that is better off dead than living. Nebraska doesn’t even have a winning record & these two teams met in 2013. I guess it’s a chance to watch Josh Rosen, but at the same time, UCLA is in a no win situation. They are playing a 5-7 team. A very unexciting bowl. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Military Bowl: This is the 8th installment of the Military Bowl & only twice before has one of the service academies been in the game & both times they lost! If the Notre Dame commonality means anything this should be a FANTASTIC bowl game. I think the Panthers have been underrated all season & this will also be Navy QB Keenan Reynolds’ last game. I’d love to see the Middies win & finish the season 11-2. What an amazing season for Navy. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Quick Lane Bowl: I think this is one of 3 games played in baseball stadiums. The Pinstripe Bowl is played in Yankee Stadium & the Alamo Bowl is played on Chase Field home of the Arizona Diamondbacks. This another bowl featuring a sub-.500 team in the Gophers who are 5-7 taking on Central Michigan at 7-5. Sort of a no win for the Big 10. If they win they should, but if they lose it’s embarrassing. The Gophers are a tough crew so I think they’ll pull this one out. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Armed Forces Bowl: This used to be the Ft. Worth Bowl! This an interesting game to watch as far as contrast in styles is concerned. Air Force is a run heavy team with their spread option attack & they should see some success as Cal’s defense is very porous. QB Jared Goff, on the other hand, should have no trouble moving Cal’s offense up & down the field. This might be one of those games where defenses don’t really matter & whoever has the ball last wins. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Russell Athletic Bowl: The first big game of the bowl season pits 9-3 Baylor up against 11-2 North Carolina. I’d be a lot more excited about this game if I knew that Seth Russell & Corey Coleman were suiting up for the Bears, but they aren’t. Even Jarrett Stidham is on the sidelines so we are only seeing a shadow of what Baylor really is. That said, Baylor still should move the ball but I think the Tar Heels prevail in this one & get to 12-2 & an incredible finish. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Arizona Bowl: The first non-championship bowl game to feature teams from the same conference since the 1979 Orange Bowl which featured Oklahoma & Nebraska. This is the worst bowl of them all this year. Two teams from the Mountain West? Even worse is that neither team is any good. Theoretically this game should be MW v. CUSA or MW v. Sun Belt, but neither conference could come up with a team so we get MW v. MW. What in the world went wrong? Computer Hope
Computer Hope Texas Bowl: How lucky is the Mad Hatter? Les Miles goes from essentially being fired to beating Texas A&M & then getting a bowl game against a team that Lenoard Fournette might actually rush for 300 yards against! Texas Tech throws the ball entirely too much for a defense like LSU! The Tigers are likely to come up with 2-3 interceptions to go along with Fournette’s dominance while spells blowout city for LSU. As always, Texas Tech really needs a defense. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Birmingham Bowl: Memphis let down at the end of the season. The Tigers started 8-0 but went 1-3 in their last 4 to finish 9-3 & 3rd in the AAC  West. For that they were rewarded with a bowl game against the SEC West last place team! Auburn is a big name of course, but it feels like Memphis deserved better than a 6-6 team if only to see how Paxton Lynch performs against at top shelf defense from one of the Big 5 conferences. Conversely, Auburn could win! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Belk Bowl: This is sort of an interesting game as both teams have decent records but you could certainly argue that both teams beat up on the dregs of their conference along with some non-conference cupcakes to get where they are. I love Mississippi St. & like where NC State is going, but both teams need to take that next step. The Wolfpack don’t have much to stop Dak Prescott who will be making his last start as a MS State QB. He’s had an amazing career! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Music City Bowl: Obviously the storyline here is Kevin Sumlin & his fate with Texas A&M. Kyle Allen & Kyler Murray are transferring. Last year Kenny Hill transferred meaning Sumlin has lost 3 ELITE QBs to transfer in the last 2 seasons. Sumlin needs the win here to take a little bit of the heat off, but I don’t see them getting it. Louisville is a solid football team & Bobby Petrino has time to prepare against a 3rd string QB. The SEC West is no joke my friends! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Holiday Bowl: I’ve read rumors that a lot of big money donors at USC did not want Clay Helton to be the next HC & that a lot of boosters preferred USC to make a splash & go hard after a candidate like Nick Saban! That seems crazy but it also points to the heat being on Helton to produce quick or face a fast exit. A win over Wisconsin would definitely buy some time but the Badgers could use this game to prove they are among the nation’s elite football teams. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Peach Bowl: A brutal draw for Florida State. Some big 5 conference team was going to draw Houston & it’s a no-win situation. Beat Houston & who cares? It’s Houston. Lose to Houston & catch flack for losing to a non-Big 5 conference opponent. Houston is a good squad but they haven’t seen ANYTHING close to Dalvin Cook! No team has average more than 4ypc on Houston’s D this year but Cook averages 7.9ypc & ran for 7+ypc on a nasty Florida D-line. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Orange Bowl: ACC champ versus Big XII champ! Clemson comes in at 13-0 while the Sooners have won 7 straight games. I have the sneaking suspicion that Oklahoma is going to roll Clemson pretty hard in this game. The Sooners have played the like the best team in football for the past 7 weeks & I don’t see that offense being stopped. The scary part is how good the Sooners defense has been as well. I think OU wins big & the ACC is exposed as very inferior. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cotton Bowl: SEC champ versus Big 10 champ. It’s worth noting that Tide QB Jake Coker is averaging 191 yards per game. That might not mean much, but this game is going to come down to how well Michigan St. can defend Derrick Henry in the Alabama running game. If they can limit Henry then it forces Coker to try & win the game & that is something he hasn’t had to do. I think Alabama wins, but if the Spartans defense of the last 4 weeks shows up…… Computer Hope
Computer Hope Outback Bowl: Touch matchup for Northwestern & this is a bowl I’m really looking forward to. At 10-2, you’d think the Wildcats would have an advantage over the 8-4 Vols, but I think by year’s end Tennessee was playing like the SEC’s second best squad so I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see UT’s superior talent & athleticism overwhelm Northwestern. Then again, Northwestern has been ugly all season & figures out ways to still get wins. Should be a great game. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Citrus Bowl: The Gators got some horrible news this past week when it learned of Will Grier’s intent to transfer! That’s awful news but somehow I don’t think it’ll mess up what Jim McElwain is going to do down in Gainesville. Florida didn’t draw well anyway & I think the Gators are in for a curb stomping at the hands of Jim Harbaugh & the Wolverines who definitely want to get that 10th victory. Although they’ll lose, Florida ends with an impressive 10 wins. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Fiesta Bowl: A playoff game that isn’t, Ohio St. at 11-1 & Notre Dame at 10-2 are likely the first two teams taken if the playoffs were to expand from 4 to 8. Ohio St. is the best team in the nation if it plays like it did against Michigan & I don’t see the Irish beating them. Then again, the Buckeyes sometimes don’t show up. They will against the Irish so I think ND needs to keep it close & see what happens. The worst case scenario for ND is shades of 2012 v. Alabama. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Rose Bowl: Like ND/Ohio St., it’s hard not to see this game as an extension of the playoffs as these 2 would have certainly been the other 2 if the field had expanded to 8. I’m in the tank for Iowa so I’m rooting hard for the Hawkeyes to win & finish 13-1! Iowa will also have their eyes on Michigan State. If the Spartans end up winning the national championship then Iowa has a legit claim to be the #2 team in the nation & probably should be so. Go Hawks! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Sugar Bowl: Unfortunately we won’t get to see DT/DE Robert Nkemdiche. The 6’4/295lbs potential #1 overall draft pick is suspended. I love this game in that it’s a good test of overall conference strength. OK State is probably the 4th best team in the Big XII while Ole Miss is likely the 2nd/3rd best in the SEC. Should be a layup for the Rebels & that is what I’d expect. The closest defense OK State has seen to Ole Miss is Oklahoma’s and that was ugly! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Taxslayer Bowl: This is an exciting matchup when you look at the jerseys only as both programs are historically great, but right now neither is very good. These teams are a combined 0-7 against AP Top-25 teams which is an amazing stat considering. The Dawgs are probably the 7th-8th best team in the SEC while Penn St. is probably the 7th best team in the Big 10. It’s a good test to determine the overall depth of the conferences, but it won’t live up to the names. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Liberty Bowl: Brutal draw for Kansas St. as they don’t defend the run all that well & Arkansas is an ELITE rushing offense. Arkansas really turned their play on at the end of the season & if they didn’t struggle early on they probably would have been the 2nd place team in the West. I think Bret Bielema also wants to build which means the 7-5 Razorbacks need a win to get to 8-5 which is a game better than last year’s 7-6 team. K-State isn’t very good. Hogs roll. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Alamo Bowl: OUTSTANDING BOWL MATCH-UP! There were more than a few people before the season began that entertained thoughts that this game would be for the national championship. The good news is that TCU QB Trevone Boykin will play & maybe even WR Josh Doctson could get in on the action. The bad news is Oregon right now is a top-5 team & TCU’s defense is still atrocious. Both teams score but Oregon might score 60! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Cactus Bowl: This is an important game for the Big XII. Arizona St. might be the 9th best team in the Pac 12 this year & I think the Big XII has a shot to lose quite a few bowl games. A win by the Mountaineers could at least add some credence to the depth of the conference. A loss here though could mean a clean sweep of the Big XII outside of Oklahoma, but given the state of college football right now, it seems like the ACC & Big XII are severely lacking. Computer Hope

December 22, 2015 Posted by | Air Force, Akron, Alabama, Appalachian St., Arizona, Arizona St., Arkansas, Arkansas St., Auburn, Baylor, Big Games, Boise St., Bowl Season, Bowling Green, BYU, California, Central Michigan, Cincinnati, Clemson, Colorado St., Connecticut, Duke, Florida, Florida St., Georgia, Georgia Southern, Georgia St., Houston, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas St., Louisiana Tech, Louisville, LSU, Marshall, Memphis, Miami-FL, Michigan, Michigan St., Middle Tennessee St., Minnesota, Mississippi, Mississippi St., Must See Games, N. Illinois, Navy, NC State, NCAA, NCAA Playoffs, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio, Ohio St, Oklahoma, Oklahoma St., Oregon, Penn St., Pittsburgh, Playoffs, San Diego St., San Jose St., South Florida, Southern Miss, Stanford, TCU, Temple, Tennessee, Texas AM, Texas Tech, Toledo, Tulsa, UCLA, USC, Utah, Utah St., Virginia Tech, Washington, Washington St., West Virginia, Western Kentucky, Western Michigan, Wisconsin | Leave a comment

2015 NCAA WEEK 14 – BIG GAMES

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Computer Hope The ACC Championship game should be the most interesting because it has the most potential to upset the playoff rankings apple cart should the Tar Heels pull of the stunner! The 12-0 Tigers have it easy. They are the #1 ranked team in the nation, but UNC is ranked 10th & they’d have to jump over a lot of people to get into the playoffs. The one issue? Ohio State! If UNC & USC win, I don’t think North Carolina could leap the Buckeyes into the Final 4 teams. Computer Hope
Computer Hope A lot more interesting before Florida lost to Florida St. last week, but it’s still the SEC Championship & it’s interesting because Jim McElwain used to be Nick Saban’s OC before he left to take the Colorado St. job. I’m not saying McElwain will have any idea as to how best to manipulate the Bama defense, but it is a unit he’s seen up close. Another interesting aspect to this game is that if Alabama were to lose, the SEC is out of the playoff picture. No other team is close. Computer Hope
Computer Hope The Big 10 Championship game is the only championship game this weekend where it really is winner take all. Iowa at 12-0 is ranked #4 while the 11-1 Spartans are ranked #5. The winner is almost assured a spot in the playoff. With the Irish out I’m rooting for the Hawkeyes to run the table. The Jordan Canzeri/Sparty D matchup is going to be amazing, but it’s hard to see Iowa winning of the Michigan St. defense that showed up against Ohio St., shows up on Saturday! Computer Hope
Computer Hope It’s amazing to think that the Trojans were 3-3 at one point & losing their HC this season! The men of Troy rallied behind interim HC Clay Helton, went 5-1 in their last 6 & won the Pac 12 South. This should be an awesome QB duel between Kevin Hogan & Cody Kessler and it seems fitting they’d both meet in the Pac 12 Championship game as both are departing seniors. Stanford could still find themselves in the playoffs if either Alabama or Clemson lose. Computer Hope
Computer Hope This is an awesome AAC matchup between the 10-2 Owls & 11-1 Cougars! The matchup here is cool because it pits strength against strength. Houston is a dominant rushing team that ran the ball effectively all season long & an incredibly effective rate. Temple’s best unit is their rush defense. Which will win out? Also of consequence is that the winner is going to a Big 6 bowl as they’ll be the highest ranked team of the non power conference. I’m rooting for Temple. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Lost in the AAC battle for a Big 6 bowl, is how good a team San Diego State is. The Aztecs are 9-3 & have won 8 straight games, going perfect in their conference. And their conference performance as DOMINANT as they beat everyone by at least 14 points. The problem is their losses to S.Alabama, Penn St. & Cal early in the season. Air Force should be a good test but SD State should pass & I think they have a tremendous chance at finishing with an 11-3 record! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Southern Miss might have the most exciting quartet of offensive players in college football. QB Nick Mullens passed for 4,000yds/36TD. RBs Jalen Richard & Ito Smith combined for over 2,000yds & 20TD! WR Mike Thomas had 1,111 receiving yards & 11TD! The Hilltoppers have QB Brandon Doughty who passed for almost 4200 yards & has 42TD! These steams deserve more publicity. WKU is 10-2 without a bad loss. Southern Miss is 9-3 without either. Don’t miss this one! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Hats off to Northern Illinois for winning the MAC West, but I would have rather seen Toledo here & it’s unfortunate that the Rockets lost to W.Michigan. Remember too that Matt Campbell likely doesn’t wind up at Iowa St. just yet if the Rockets are playing for a MAC Championship. This still should be a great game headlined by BG QB Matt Johnson. The Senior has thrown for almost 4500 yards & 41TD! Don’t count the Huskies out though. They run the MAC!! Computer Hope

December 4, 2015 Posted by | Air Force, Alabama, Big Games, Bowling Green, Clemson, Florida, Houston, Iowa, Michigan St., Must See Games, N. Illinois, NCAA, North Carolina, San Diego St., Southern Miss, Stanford, Temple, USC, Week 14, Western Kentucky | Leave a comment

2015 NCAA WEEK 5 – BIG GAMES

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Computer Hope HUGE GAME!!!! The last time Alabama was completely out of the national championship picture was 2010 when they were 7-2 after 9 games. The Tide could be 3-2 after 5 this year if they lose to the Bulldogs! How amazing is that? I think the key to this game will be UGA QB Greyson Lambert. Georgia leans heavily on RB Nick Chubb (rightfully so) & it’ll be interesting to see if Lambert can carry the team with Alabama & Nick Saban take away part of the offense & force the Bulldogs to go through the air. Computer Hope
Computer Hope This is such an important game for both squads. The Georgia Tech win looks a lot worse now that they’ve lost to Duke and this is really the only tough road game the Irish will have until the season finale at Stanford. The schedule is even more dire for Clemson who really doesn’t have a tough contest outside of ND & Florida St., both home games. Both teams are respected to be sure. The Irish are #6 while Clemson is #12, but as the season wears on, SOS plays a role which means this game is vital to both squads. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I’ve been saying it for the past couple of weeks, Texas Tech is for real. They should have won last week against TCU & now they get an opportunity to salve those wounds with a road win over Baylor! I’d expect this game to be a lot like Texas Tech/TCU so get ready for some fireworks! I think a huge part of this game will be pressure because of Baylor’s defensive line. The Bears rank 32nd in the nation in sacks while Texas Tech ranks 3rd in the nation in sacks allowed. If those rankings hold then look out. The Big XII is nuts! Computer Hope
Computer Hope With so much talk about Northwestern, Michigan St., Michigan & Ohio St., these 2 teams are flying somewhat under the radar but Wisconsin is 3-0 since losing to Alabama having outscored their opponents 114-3! Iowa has quietly put together a 4-0 start with 2 impressive wins over Iowa St. & Pittsburgh. These teams are practically mirror images statistically. A couple of things to watch is the QB battle between Joel Stave & CJ Beathard & the DE/OLB battle between Joe Schobert & Nate Meier. Those are key. Computer Hope
Computer Hope The Big XII has to be really careful here because last season they ended up missing the playoffs because you could argue the conference was too good with a couple of teams at the top that deserved to be there. West Virginia has been playing like their polar opposite with an amazing defense! There isn’t a weak team in the Big XII at this point outside of Kansas, but the key here is that whoever wins needs to keep carrying that momentum. Baker Mayfield is key in this game. If he has a bad game, OU is done. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I thought Jim McElwain would make an impact in Gainesville, but the coach has already exceeded expectations with two key divisional wins on the road at Kentucky & then at home against Tennessee. Ole Miss should come away with an easy win here despite historical trends, but a couple of interesting things to watch. Ole Miss didn’t handle being the hunted all that well last season & that Vandy win was uninspiring. Florida so far is 3-0 in close games. Regression is coming possibly but good teams get lucky. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Great matchup between an incredible D-Line in Texas A&M going up against a veteran SEC starter in Dak Prescott! Prescott is a Heisman candidate that can pad his resume with a big road win against the Aggies. A&M on the other hand rank #2 in the nation in sacks & #4 in the nation in tackles for loss. Last year Mississippi St. came away with a 48-31 win, but in Starkville. This is a tremendous game being overshadowed a bit by UGA/Bama, but the winner here probably moves into the top-10 nationally. Computer Hope
Computer Hope The Gophers have gone 3-0 since losing the opener to TCU. On one hand that is great because Minnesota lost that opener by 7 & most people have TCU in the top-5 so how good is Minnesota? On the other hand, those 3 wins have come by a combined 9 points against Colorado St., Ohio & Kent St.! How good is Minnesota?! Regardless, this will be a tough game for Northwestern as Jerry Kill is an OUTSTANDING HC & will have the Gophers ready. I think Northwestern rebounds big after the tough Ball St. victory. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I’m not sure Butch Jones deserves to be on the hot seat, but the storm clouds are aligning in such a manner that Arkansas looks primed to get a victory in Neyland on Saturday. UT is coming off a heartbreaking loss to Florida while Arkansas came THIS CLOSE to beating Texas A&M. The Razorbacks are nowhere near a 1-3 team in my opinion. I think they were a dark horse pick to win the SEC before the season began so that is the talent you are looking at, but UT starting 2-3 with UGA up next? UT needs this one bad! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Maryland sucks so maybe this isn’t an ideal game to be looking at, but it’s far more intriguing for a couple of reasons than at first glance. The first is that Michigan isn’t sneaking up on anyone now. The 7pt loss to Utah looks amazing & the Wolverines just pasted a BYU team 31-0 that UCLA beat by just a single point. The 2nd reason is watching how Michigan handles being the hunted. With the way the season is playing out, Michigan could be 10-1 when Ohio St. comes to town. Can you imagine Harbaugh in that game!? Computer Hope
Computer Hope Arizona got waxed by UCLA last week, but this game could be instructive if we wind up with a UCLA/Stanford Pac 12 championship game which seems likely at the moment. Stanford has really turned it on after losing to Northwestern, but their defense has shown the ability to give up some points which could work in Arizona’s favor. Also worth noting is the play of Stanford’s offense. If they show up like they did in Evanston, then this is a game Arizona could easily come away with a win. Computer Hope
Computer Hope So far Texas stinks. They are 1-3 with their only win coming against Rice. They’ve even lost back-to-back home games against Oklahoma St. & California! However, this game could get interesting. Texas still has more talent than any team in the Big XII. At some point that talent has to show up. Texas BARELY lost to Cal & OK State so if you believe in those teams then maybe the Horns aren’t that bad. Note also that TCU’s defense has been putrid this season & maybe, just maybe Texas could find some magic here. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Boston College is a helluva team & HC Steve Addazio is fantastic! I’m not sure why Addazio isn’t at a bigger school but he’s going to make waves on Chestnut Hill. I think BC’s 14-0 loss to Florida St. was a warning shot. This team can play. They are gritty. They run the ball & they play outstanding defense. Duke has played extremely well but if BC can get a win here, their toughest game remaining is at Clemson. I think BC could be a player in the Atlantic & they potentially have the team to make a run at 10-2/9-3. Computer Hope
Computer Hope These games haven’t been blow outs. In 2011, Ohio St. won 34-20. In 2012 it was 52-49. Two years ago it was 42-14 & last year it was 42-27. Granted, Indiana hasn’t beaten Ohio St. since 1988, but the Hoosiers are better this year than they’ve been in a very long time. Nate Sudfeld is healthy & Jordan Howard is running the ball like Tevin Coleman never left. The Buckeyes have been less than inspiring this season & the game is in Bloomington. It would be foolish to call for an IU victory but this one could be close. Computer Hope
Computer Hope So far the season has been somewhat disappointing for Arizona State, but you can argue for ASU the same as you can argue for Tennessee. The Sun Devils have lost to Texas A&M & USC & if you believe those teams could potentially be top-10 programs, then how bad can ASU be? The problem with Arizona St. to this point is giving up big passing plays on defense. They are getting after it defensively. If they can force Josh Rosen into a bad game & Mike Bercovici plays well, then ASU could easily get a win here. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Pittsburgh was a sleeper team for me at the beginning of the season so them losing at Iowa a couple of weeks ago hurt although that loss looks pretty darn good if the Hawkeyes win in Madison this weekend! The James Connor loss hurts but Qadree Ollison has been outstanding. This is still the same PITT team at the beginning of the year & the ACC Coastal is wide open. Brenden Motley has been great for the Hokie since Ohio St., but the Panthers can get after the QB. This is HUGE game in the ACC Coastal. Computer Hope
Computer Hope The problem with the ACC is that the Coastal teams simply don’t play up to expectation. There is no reason why North Carolina, Miami-FL, Pittsburgh, Georgia Tech & Virginia Tech shouldn’t be top-25 schools, but instead we are stuck with Duke for crying out loud! It makes no sense. UNC/GT is a legitimate game but GT is on a 2-game losing streak & North Carolina lost to a putrid South Carolina squad on opening weekend. Given their schedule UNC is a huge threat to win the Coastal, but can they beat the Jackets? Computer Hope
Computer Hope If you were to ask me which two teams I follow the least among the Big 5, I’d definitely say Kansas St. would be one of them and potentially Oklahoma St. would be up there. The Wildcats are 3-0 & the Cowboys are 4-0 so this game is probably a bigger deal than I’m giving it credit for here, but to be honest, I still think Texas Tech, TCU, Oklahoma, Baylor & West Virginia are ahead of them. This just goes to show you the depth of the Big XII. Everyone is talking SEC & Pac 12 as the best conference, but maybe not. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I think it’s cool when the service academies get together & play! Air Force is coming into the game 2-1 coming off a loss at Michigan St. that was closer than expected in my opinion. Navy is 3-0 with Keenan Reynolds & Chris Swain running out of their minds. This should be an amazing game if you like option/running football. Air Force ranks #2 in the nation in rushing offense while Navy ranks #3! If anything, tune in for Keenan Reynolds. The guy is a special talent & if you haven’t seen him, it’s worth the 3 hours. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I’m going to try to start adding a MAC game per week because the MAC is AWESOME! This week it’s Toledo/Ball State! Toledo simply doesn’t give a rip! Arkansas? Check! Iowa St.? Check! I think the Rockets are applying to join the Big 10 this week! Ball St. took Northwestern to the brink last week & has a road game against Texas A&M under their belt! They’ve faced some stiff competition. I’d expect the Rockets to win here but if Ball St. RB Darian Green gets going, he might be impossible to stop! Computer Hope

October 3, 2015 Posted by | Air Force, Alabama, Arizona, Arizona St., Arkansas, Ball St., Baylor, Big Games, Boston College, Clemson, Duke, Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas St., Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Mississippi St., Must See Games, Navy, NCAA, North Carolina, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio St, Oklahoma, Oklahoma St., Pittsburgh, Stanford, TCU, Tennessee, Texas, Texas AM, Texas Tech, Toledo, UCLA, Virginia Tech, Week 5, West Virginia, Wisconsin | Leave a comment

2015 NCAA WEEK 3 – BIG GAMES

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Computer Hope Ole Miss has shown the ability to play defense this year but the real trick will be seeing how they handle Alabama stud RB Derrick Henry. Remember that while Ole Miss has an exceptional offense, Nick Saban can counter that by keeping them off the field. You don’t hear about in the media all that much, but ball control is absolutely vital to winning football. The Alabama defense is looking for statements. Locking up Ole Miss would be a huge statement to make & put the SEC on notice. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I think this game really catapults either squad nationally. Notre Dame has historically struggled with this sort of team during Brian Kelly’s tenure, but the loss of Malik Zaire or Tarean Folston doesn’t affect the defense one bit. I think the Irish score, but the biggest point of emphasis will be Notre Dame’s ability to stop Paul Johnson’s triple option. To this point GT hasn’t had to rely on QB Justin Thomas, but you almost get the feeling Thomas has been waiting for this game to put his game face on. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Keep an eye on Auburn’s rush defense. Through 2 games, War Eagle ranks 97th in the nation in rush defense & Leonard Fournette is coming to town. Fournette bruised up Mississippi St. last week to the tune of 159yds & 3TD on 28 carries. The beating was slow & methodical. Also note that LSU’s defense pretty much kept Dak Prescott in check & Jeremy Johnson isn’t nearly the QB Prescott is. Given how Auburn has played early & that this game is in Baton Rouge? Auburn finally slips. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I think most people by now would have thought BYU would be 0-2. Instead they are 2-0 & you can’t help but notice the magic surrounding this football team. The Cougars were going to be good this year regardless of how they played at Nebraska & Boise State. What we didn’t know was that Taysum Hill would be out for the season against Nebraska & Taylor Mangum would become a glory magnet with 2 huge wins. Sure Missouri & Michigan are left but a win at UCLA sets BYU up for 12-0! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Stanford looked better last week against Central Florida in a 31-7 win, but that still can’t erase the 16-6 disaster they posted against Northwestern. USC tuned up Arkansas St. & Idaho in preparation for Pac 12 play. I don’t think either team could be entering the game from more opposite directions. I think we can learn a lot here. If Stanford holds tough then you kind of have to wonder just how good Northwestern could be or rather if the loss was just a blip on Stanford’s season. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Just think about 2010, 2011, 2012 & 2014 to realize how important this game is for Georgia. Sure the Bulldogs got a win in 2013 but Spurrier seems to own Mark Richt & Georgia in recent times. There is no way Georgia should lose this game. They are more talented. They are playing between the hedges. There are a number of other reasons but throw them out. Georgia doesn’t have great QB play so if the Gamecocks defense shows up against the run then who knows what happens! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Blake Kemp & the East Carolina passing attack torched the Gators last week although Florida did walk away with a 31-24 win. Kentucky has been winning games with a solid rushing attack behind Stanley Williams & JoJo Kemp. One thing Florida is doing well is playing outstanding rush defense so it’ll be interesting to see if UK QB Patrick Towles can make some plays. Could you imagine saying Kentucky is out to a 3-0 start with wins over Florida & South Carolina? In football? Computer Hope
Computer Hope I was really high on Pittsburgh before the season began because I thought Pat Narduzzi could do a good job with all the Panthers had returning. All-American RB James Connor was knocked out of the season in Week 1 but Qadree Ollison has stepped up in a HUGE way! I still like Pittsburgh but this game will be telling. Pitt’s defense stepped up against Akron but the Panthers might have a QB controversy on their hands. As for the Hawkeyes, a win is huge as the West is wide open! Computer Hope
Computer Hope Can Arkansas bounce back from a humiliating home loss to Toledo? Whether you like Texas Tech or not, the Red Raiders are going to score some points. Tech has scored 64PPG in their first 2 games & QB Patrick Mahomes has already thrown 8TD passes! Arkansas had tremendous issues running the football on the Rockets which is almost impossible to imagine. Texas Tech ranks 121st in rush defense so if the Razorback defense can hold up, Arkansas should run wild. Computer Hope
Computer Hope A really interesting game. It’s not among powerful teams but intriguing for what it can tell us. Duke has been flawless in their first 2 games outscoring their opponents 92-7. Northwestern has the huge opening win over Stanford. Duke QB Thomas Sirk has been almost perfect & the Blue Devils have some intriguing players. Duke is 19-8 over the past 2 seasons with an ACC Coastal title. This won’t be a walk, but a Wildcat win further solidifies Northwestern. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Texas is in complete shambles at this point. After the 38-3 drubbing at the hands of Notre Dame, HC Charlie Strong completely shakes up the staff. The following week Texas wins an uninspiring home opener over Rice & the school fires the athletic director. Maybe getting rid of Mack Brown wasn’t such a fantastic idea even if he wasn’t winning national championships. I love this game for Cal because it’s a resume builder & Cal can start turning some heads. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Louisville hasn’t looked so good starting the season 0-2 but the Cardinals have lost both games by 10 points so they are this close to being 2-0 & if that were the case we’d be thinking about this game in a completely different light. Let’s face it, Louisville has a freshman QB in Lamar Jackson who is struggling mightily. Two of his starting receivers are out & Louisville is allowing 32.5PPG. This is a game Clemson should win by 20. Let’s see if they do it. Computer Hope
Computer Hope The opening home loss to BYU was a gut-punch for the Cornhuskers but Nebraska fans might be clamoring for Bo Pellini should they lose to Miami-FL and start the season 1-2! I think it’s amazing how Nebraska has fallen by the way side as a national power. It’s not unlike Miami-FL has done since Butch Davis left Coral Gables. This is a great game when you think historically, but not so much today. I’d like to see the Hurricanes get to 3-0 & get noticed. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I don’t think Michigan St. is going to turn around and lose a home game to Air Force after securing the biggest win in college football this year, but I do think this will be a tough game. Michigan St. is exceptional with their run defense & Air Force runs that triple option & they do it exceedingly well. Because of this I think Air Force can keep it close & cause the Spartans some trouble. These games can be bruising so keep an eye on Sparty’s injury report as they head into B10 play. Computer Hope
Computer Hope It’s worth noting that over the past 5 seasons, Northern Illinois is 57-13 with 3 MAC Championships. That isn’t to say they’ll beat Ohio St., but NIU isn’t your typical run of the mill MAC doormat that the Big 10 so likes to dominate. Drew Hare is a solid QB running that system & NIU has looked good in their first 2 games. I will say that the last time the Huskies faced a ranked opponent was 2011 when Wisconsin beat them 49-7. I’d expect the same, but maybe NIU can stick around. Computer Hope
Computer Hope I love this game. I’d love it even more if they would just play the home & home instead of going to Denver. Seeing the Buffaloes in Ft. Collins is an awesome sight plus it puts the rivalry moreso in the students’ hands than the alumni in Denver. I think Colorado St. is one of those programs just under the radar that needs a great head coach that wants to be there for awhile. They are a Dan Hawkins or Chris Petersen or Gary Patterson away from becoming the new Boise State. Computer Hope
Computer Hope Rutgers is an absolute dumpster fire at this point. They were this way early with all their player dismissals & suspensions but now HC Kyle Flood has been suspended for inappropriately contacting a faculty member our players’ grades! The Big 10 has to feel awful allowing the Scarlet Knights admission but there they are. Given all that is going on with Rutgers, nothing less than a blowout for Penn St. is acceptable but can they do it? Coaching Penn St. is a little tougher than coaching Vanderbilt! Computer Hope

September 17, 2015 Posted by | Air Force, Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Big Games, BYU, California, Clemson, Colorado, Colorado St., Duke, Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisville, LSU, Miami-FL, Michigan St., Mississippi, N. Illinois, Nebraska, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio St, Penn St., Pittsburgh, Rutgers, South Carolina, Stanford, Texas, Texas Tech, UCLA, USC, Week 3 | Leave a comment

2012 NCAA Football Week 2 – MUST SEE GAMES!

Week 2 is a little light as far as big games are concerned, but who’s complaining! I’ll still spend all day Saturday watching these guys throw the pigskin around!

ROAD WHY IT IS MUST SEE! HOME
Week 2 is a bit weak as far as schedule is concerned, but this is an intriguing game with Washington traveling to Death Valley to play a night game in Tiger Stadium that will be anything BUT easy! The key for this game is taking a look at how poorly Washington did against San Diego State in last week’s opener when it came to the running game. The Aztecs ran for 199 yards on 40 carries (5.0ypc) even though Washington was able to pull off a 21-12 victory at home. Last week against North Texas, Kenny Hilliard, Alfred Blue & Michael Ford ran for 314 yards on 37 carries (8.5ypc). You put those two stats together & you get a picture of LSU grinding up the Huskies with their ground game. Keith Price is a dynamic QB for Washington & I’m interesting to see what he can do against the LSU defense, but if Washington can’t stop LSU from running the football, it’s going to be a very long game for the Huskies.
Can’t wait to see this one. It looks like Arizona didn’t play too well last week beating Toledo 24-17 in OT, but a closer look shows that the Wildcats did what new HC Rich Rodriguez wanted. The Cats ran for 237 yards (5.8ypc) and passed for 387 giving them over 600 total yards! Arizona suffered a bit with being -2 in TO margin, having a bad 3rd down conversion rate, and a few too many penalties which probably kept the game a bit closer than Arizona wanted. Even with those miscues, the 624 total yards of offense was 6th most last week. Who had the most offensive yards? Oklahoma State! The Cowboys totaled 682 yards in their 84-0 romp of Savannah St. last week in Stillwater. That’s instructive. OSU had just 58 more total yards than Arizona, but 60 more points! That’s efficiency! I’m a bit dubious of OSU as they hammered an FCS team & ran for almost 400 yards. If Arizona can stop the running game a bit things will get interesting. This is also a pretty good test for Oklahoma St.’s defense. An exceptional barometer game that should be EXPLOSIVE! Can’t wait to see it.
Missouri’s first game as an SEC member was a dominating one with a 62-10 win over SE Louisiana that was 62-3 before the Lions scored a garbage TD to get to double digits. Unfortunately for the Tigers, their second game as a member of the SEC won’t be as easy. These two teams have only met once before. It happened back in the 1959 Orange Bowl when Georgia beat Missouri 14-0. Now they’ll meet every season in the SEC East. RB Kendial Lawrence was an absolute beast last week rushing the football while the Bulldogs weren’t so great at stopping the run in their 45-23 opening win over Buffalo. I’m not saying Lawrence is going to run over the Georgia defense, but the play against Buffalo at least allows us to speculate. Georgia is Georgia. If I hadn’t of picked Alabama to play for the national championship against USC, I was going with the Bulldogs. They didn’t miss a beat last week with Keith Marshall & Todd Gurley running the football. Don’t be surprised if Mizzou keeps this one close. HC Gary Pinkel is one of the absolute best coaches in college football. I don’t know if Missouri can win, but a great performance would have me thinking Mizzou finishes 2nd in the SEC East.
Unfortunately for HC Will Muschamp & the Gators, the Texas A&M game against Louisiana Tech was rained out meaning they still don’t have any idea of what the Aggies might try to do under new HC Kevin Sumlin. Florida had a rough week last week beating Bowling Green 27-14 in Gainesville. It wasn’t the best way to start a season especially considering the Gators committed 14 penalties for 106 yards! Muschamp did put the QB issue to rest naming Jeff Driskel the starter, but the star last week was RB Mike Gillislee who ran for 148 yards & 2TD for the Gators. Florida’s identity is really changing from the Steve Spurrier/Urban Meyer days. Muschamp is running a more pro-style offense & making the running game a priority. Meyer did this too, but under the disguise of a wide open offense. It’s certainly a culture change for the Gators. I can’t wait to see how A&M plays this down on Saturday. They lost some key people last season, but Florida is a team the Aggies can beat especially if Florida is as sloppy as they were last week. Can Missouri & Texas A&M win their first SEC games?
One of the most impressive teams in Week 1 had to be Nebraska. Rex Burkhead barely played, but the Cornhuskers put up 49 points on a very good Southern Miss team. QB Taylor Martinez looked like a completely different QB as his accuracy issues miraculously vanished on his way to carving up the Golden Eagles defense! Nebraska’s rush defense could have been a little better, but the passing defense was incredible. Burkhead is supposed to be 100% this week adding a lethal dimension to an already very good offense. If Martinez keeps this up then Nebraska wins the Big 10. UCLA couldn’t have been happier in Jim Mora Jr.’s first game as HC as the Bruins hammered Rice 49-24. Maybe Mora really will be the guy to bring UCLA back to prominence. There is no reason why the Bruins shouldn’t be a threat to win 10 games EVERY YEAR! UCLA has a couple of dynamic playmakers on offense. RB Johnathan Franklin has always been good so him running 214 yards & 3TD on 15 carries was nothing new last week. QB Brett Hundley is just a rFR but played well. I think Nebraska wins, but it’ll be interesting to see the barometer for UCLA.
Utah St. is fast becoming one of my favorite college football teams. HC Gary Andersen gets it and he’s a name to remember when big time jobs start opening up. In the 4-years before Andersen took over, the Aggies went 9-38. Andersen got Utah St. to a winning record & a bowl last year for the first time since 1997! Utah St. lost some SIGNIFICANT contributors from last season RBs Robert Turbin & Michael Smith along with LBs Bobby Wagner & Kyle Gallagher. That didn’t stop them in the opener against Southern Utah in a 34-3 win. Joe Hill, Kerwynn Williams & Robert Marshall ran for 232 yards & the Utah St. defense was stifling. Utah was also dominant in their 41-0 opening win over N. Colorado! Utah allowed the Bears just 114 total yards & 7 first downs while RB John White & QB Jordan Wynn were practically unstoppable. I love both teams really. Obviously I’m high on Utah as I have them in my Power 15, & I really like Utah State. This is going to be a great game & Andersen will have the Aggies revved up playing a home game against the big state school. Can’t wait to see this one!
This game is more interesting about the psyche of Michigan than it is about the actual matchup. We know what Air Force is going to try and do. They are going to run the ball all game long, and they showed last week that they are a pretty good run defense team as well that stinks in defending the pass. This is actually somewhat interesting as Michigan had a very bad night defending Alabama’s running game while Denard Robinson looked awful throwing the football. This will play into Air Force’s hands which could make this more of a game than it should be. I really want to see how Michigan responds to being humiliated on national television last week. If they bounce back extremely well then last week was a lot more about Alabama than it was about Michigan. If the Wolverines come out flat and don’t play well, then there might be problems in Ann Arbor. The bad taste of last week only goes away with a blowout loss over the Falcons & I’m not sure Michigan gets that type of win over a team like Air Force.
After watching LSU & Alabama play last week, this SEC West game doesn’t have as much meaning because the teams have absolutely no chance at winning the SEC West! Still the game has some pretty decent consequences. Auburn didn’t play poorly against Clemson last week, but still lost. Mississippi St. was up 35-0 on Jackson St. before you could blink & cruised from that point forward. The Bulldogs are going under the radar because of Alabama, LSU & Arkansas, but MSU gets Arkansas in Starkville & a win there could push the Bulldogs to a final record of 10-2 which has to put them in the top-10 if their only losses on the season are road losses to Alabama & LSU. They have that sort of potential. A 10-2 record would show HC Dan Mullen taking MSU to the next level & either he’d get the Bulldogs to be a national player or he’d leave for greener pastures. On the other side, a loss by Auburn would put War Eagle at 0-2 & with the schedule they have it could mean a 6-6 season which has to make HC Gene Chizik’s seat a little warm. Is he really living off a spectacular season from Can Newton? Is his performance at Iowa St. really more indicative of his overall ability as a HC? Tons of subplots here.
I think Notre Dame shocked quite a few people with their 50-10 blowout win over Navy in Dublin Ireland last week. Naysayers will point out that Notre Dame should beat Navy 50-10 whether they play the Middies in Ireland or the parking lot outside Soldier Field! However, if you’ve followed ND closely the last few years you’d know how difficult Navy has been for Notre Dame & what a sea change this is for the Irish. QB Everett Golson is the real deal. If he stays healthy then the Irish are going to be extremely dangerous. Notre Dame also ran the ball exceptionally well behind Theo Riddick, George Atkinson and Cam McDaniel. The Irish were without Cierre Wood and still ran the ball with reckless abandon. The defense played out of their minds even if they were playing without the departed Aaron Lynch! Pudue had a great game last week hammering Eastern Kentucky and I’m surprised HC Danny Hope is going with Caleb TerBush over Robert Marve at QB considering how well Marve played. Unfortunately for Purdue it won’t matter if ND plays like it did last week. The Irish have put you on notice!
I thought the Hurricanes did a great job last week against Boston College in going up to Boston & beating BC 41-32. Boston College had some leads during that game & even raced out to a 14-0 lead, but the Hurricanes never gave up, stuck it out & start the season 1-0. QB Stephen Morris did a pretty good job under center while true freshman RB Duke Johnson ran for 135 yards & 2TD on 7 carries. Johnson is being favorably compared to Tennessee Titans RB Chris Johnson which is flat out scary. Miami’s rush defense was solid & I really think Al Golden is going to have Miami-FL competing for national championships sooner rather than later. Kansas St. opened up their season with a 51-9 win over Missouri St., but through 3 quarters the Wildcats were up just 16-9! K-State scored 5-4th quarter TDs to really blow the game open. I love this game as a barometer game for the Hurricanes. Kansas St. ran the ball really well against Missouri St. and it’ll be interesting to see how Miami-FL defends. I also can’t wait to see more of Duke Johnson! Should be exciting in Manhattan this Saturday!
This is another interesting one. UCF’s star has been on the rise for some time now and the Knights are expected to win Conference USA this season. Ohio St. isn’t eligible for postseason play, but if they were I’d be willing to bet that most would have the Buckeyes playing in the Big 10 championship game for a shot at either the Rose Bowl or even the BCS Championship! From that perspective you would think Ohio St. should roll through this one, but last week both teams took on a couple of MAC schools with similar results. Ohio St. beat Miami-OH 56-10 while UCF took care of Akron 56-14. You can argue that Akron is worse than Miami-OH so the Ohio St. win is marginally better. On the other hand you can argue that UCF won on the road so their win is more meaningful. Talent & size will be an issue in this game for UCF, but if they keep it close it’s just as good as a win really. If Ohio St. pull off some 30-40 point win, then good grief Urban Meyer has taken to Ohio St. like a fish to water and the Buckeyes have a real shot at a perfect 12-0 season and a potential #2 ranking by season’s end.
Nothing really fancy here for this game being one of the more interesting ones. Last week Wisconsin beat Northern Iowa 26-21 in a game that was probably closer than what it appeared. New QB Danny O’Brien was practically flawless while RB Montee Ball ran for 120 yards & a TD. Northern Iowa scored a couple of 4th quarter TDs after Wisconsin built a 26-7 lead so nothing really to write home about. What was interesting was to see Wisconsin play such an efficient game, play outstanding rush defense against an FCS school & yet still walk away with just a 5-point victory at home!? Is this cause for concern or just some cray anomaly that happens sometimes in college football? Oregon St.’s opener against Nicholls St. was suspended so the Beavers are opening up their season at home against a ranked team. That’s no easy task, but OSU has a shot to win if Wisconsin has a game like they did last week. I’m very interesting to see what the final score is if Wisconsin plays that well. Another close one could raise some suspicions about the Badgers in 2012.
THE BATTLE FOR THE CYHAWK TROPHY! I know I say this every year, but of the “state” rivalry games where team X plays team X-State, I really love the Iowa/Iowa St. game. I also really like Colorado/Colorado St. too which is my other favorite. I’ve oftentimes wondered why this is. There are other state rivalries that would seem to be better. You have Michigan/Michigan St., Florida/Florida St., Arizona/Arizona St. and Oklahoma/Oklahoma St., but for whatever reason I’m really drawn to this one. Part of it I suppose is that Michigan’s big rival is Ohio State. I’ve always believed the Florida St./Miami-FL game is bigger & better than Florida/Florida State. Oklahoma’s rival it always seemed had been either Texas or Nebraska. Even Utah/Utah St. is starting climb up the charts for me although when you think big rivals for Utah you immediately go to BYU and the HOLY WAR! That leaves Iowa/Iowa St. as being king for me with Colorado/Colorado St. as prince. I’ve always rooted for Iowa in this game because I’m a Big 10 guy, but lately I’ve been pulling for ISU because I like Paul Rhoads quite a bit.
Nevada got off to a great start last week going into Berkeley & beating Cal 31-24! The Wolfpack got a last minute score from Stefphon Jefferson to ice the game & come away 1-0. It was classic Chris Ault football in the pistol formation as Nevada ran the ball down Cal’s throats, dominated time of possesssion and kept the Bears off the field to prevent them from scoring. QB Cody Fajardo was efficient while Nevada racked up over 200 yards of rushing. Just like in their old WAC days, Nevada & Boise St. will battle it out for the Mountain West title. USF had a pretty easy time with Chattanooga last week beating the Mocs 34-13 in Tampa. BJ Daniels had a solid game, but the story was the stifling defense of the Bulls. I love this game for USF. If Skip Holtz is the guy & USF is ready to make a move, they should be able to go into Reno & beat Nevada. If they come out a loser then it’s bad for the Big East, but also bad for USF who seemingly can’t get over the hump. USF is a top-20 program in the making, but can’t quite seem to put it all together for one season. Great barometer game for both schools.
As the season moves forward, the less important the Penn St. games will become, but after a tragic home loss to Ohio last week, Penn St. still remains relevant if only because they will probably lose to Virginia this weekend in Charlottesville. The wheels wouldn’t be completely off, but other teams will start to smell blood and you would have to wonder when & if the Penn St. players would simply quit on the team. A loss to UVA wouldn’t be awful, but then Penn St. comes home for two games against Navy & Temple. Those are two games PSU should have won, but Penn St. should have beaten Ohio & that didn’t happen. HC Bill O’Brien has a huge task in front of him, but the biggest may be simply getting a win & moving forward. At their very best Penn St. maybe wins 5 games, but if things really hit the rails their only real winnable game in conference play will be a home game against Indiana. Worst case for Penn St. right now is 0-12. That would be absolutely stunning, but the possibility is there even if it is exceptionally slim.

September 7, 2012 Posted by | Air Force, Arizona, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Iowa St., Kansas St., LSU, Miami-FL, Michigan, Mississippi St., Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, Notre Dame, Ohio St, Oklahoma St., Oregon St., Penn St., Purdue, South Florida, Texas AM, UCF, UCLA, Utah, Utah St., Virginia, Washington, Week 2, Wisconsin | Leave a comment

2011 NCAA Football – Week 8 Best Games

Week 8!? I know I keep saying how fast this season is going, BUT WOW this season is going by FAST! It’s incredible. At this point in the season we are almost hoping for no gaffes by undefeated teams. LSU plays Auburn this week while Alabama plays Tennessee. Next week both SEC West leaders are on bye before meeting in Alabama in Week 9. Wouldn’t it be awful if one of them were to lose this week making that game almost meaningless for national championship purposes!? The same goes for a team like Oklahoma St. who walks into Missouri or Clemson who hosts North Carolina. Even other games are very very interesting as Wisconsin has a game they could lose in East Lansing against Michigan St.. Stanford hosts Washington, but the Huskies aren’t a pushover team & could put up a big fight. Even a game like Marshall/Houston is pretty good because Marshall has the ability to pull off a stunner.

At first I thought this might be a blase week, but it actually has quite a bit of juice to it. And oh by the way, there is this little rivalry game between USC & Notre Dame that is also taking place this weekend in South Bend. Can wait to get this started!

I just want to make a quick note and say that these are the most interesting games to me this week in descending order of importance. Obviously I think the most interesting and most important game of the week is the Badgers/Spartans matchup. This should give you an idea of why the games are in the order they are.

ROAD PREDICTION HOME
Michigan St. took one on the chin with losing DE William Gholston for this game against the Badgers, but I’m not sure the Spartan rush defense will be completely crushed by the loss. This might be the last game either team can potentially lose. Something to keep in mind is that Michigan St.’s game next week against Nebraska could be even more important than this one if the Big 10 championship is their goal. Either way, this comes down to how well MSU stops the Badger rush offense. Remember that Sparty does have the 3rd best rush defense in the nation. Keep in mind too that Wisconsin doesn’t need to win, but win BIG in this statement game. Current Line: Wisconsin (-7.5)
Wow. When was the last time the Irish were almost double digit favorites over USC? Notre Dame is closer to a top-10 team than you might thing. The two losses also had them being -10 in TO margin. Since then ND has eaten alive every opponent they’ve faced. USC will be a more difficult challenge, but not more difficult than Michigan St. was. This is another game where ND prevails & Kelly improves to 2-0 against the Trojans. Lane Kiffin is going to get it done in SoCal, but he needs a bit more time to finally get out from under the sanctions handed down from the previous regime. Current Line: Notre Dame (-9)
In case you haven’t noticed, Washington is 5-1 & on a 3-game winning streak. That’s certainly coming to an end against Stanford, but that line is too high. Sarkisian knows what he’s doing up in Seattle & UW is going to get better & better & better. If Kelly sticks at Oregon & Shaw does a good job replacing Harbaugh, the Pac-12 North is going to be straight BEASTLY soon enough! I can’t imagine Stanford losing, but it won’t be by 21 points. Washington is going to cover. This game will obviously have loads of attention on Andrew Luck, but keep UW QB Keith Price on the radar. Kid has 21TD & 4INT through 6 games meaning he’s on pace for 42TD:8INT! Washington could easily finish 9-3. This is the most underrated game of the week. Current Line: Stanford (-20.5)
Absolutely crazy that LSU will be without RB Spence Ware & CB Tyrann Mathieu! Ware is their leading rusher while Mathieu might be the most dynamic defensive player in the entire nation! Kirk Herbstreit has the kid winning the Heisman! That’s RIDICULOUS! RB Michael Ford has actually been better than Ware on a YPC basis while the LSU defense is a lot more than just one player. It’s inconvenient to lose a couple of starters, but LSU should still roll against War Eagle. Auburn’s defense is sieve like & they also have QB issues. That’s a tough nut to crack when in Death Valley! Current Line: LSU (-21)
At what point do you take a look at the schedule & come to the conclusion that Oklahoma St. is better than Oklahoma? A win here gives OSU road wins over Texas, Texas A&M, Tulsa & Missouri. Oklahoma’s true road wins? They have Kansas who sports the worst defense in the world & a Florida St. team that turned out to be massively overrated. If you argue that LSU is better than Alabama because of schedule, then you also MUST say Oklahoma St. is better than Oklahoma for the same reasons. I think the Cowboys roll again, but it would be nice to see them play a full game at 100%. With them scoring 40ppg it’s tough to notice when they are off, but it does happen. Current Line: Oklahoma St. (-7)
Very scary game for Clemson. I don’t think Clemson can have a first half against UNC the way they did last week against Maryland & expect to come back and win a high scoring affair. North Carolina’s defense is simply too tough for that kind of rally. UNC should be motivated to play as well because another loss virtually eliminates them from playing in the ACC Championship game by winning the Coastal Division. Keep in mind that the 5-2 Tar Heels could just as easily be 7-0. As for the Tigers, another win simply keeps the resume humming. A win here gives Clemson wins over Auburn, Florida St., Virginia Tech & UNC. It’s awfully good. Current Line: Clemson (-10.5)
It should be blow out city as the Volunteers travel to Alabama without their best QB & WR. This game really wouldn’t make it on the list as I’d expect the Tide to drop the hammer, but Alabama is currently 7-0 & any team undefeated at the halfway point or better is deserving of some recognition. I’ve said for awhile that I think AJ McCarron’s development is going to be critical for Alabama to win a national championship. In his last two games he’s 42 of 54 (77.8%) for 461 yards & 5TD without a pick. He’s right on schedule. Alabama rolls into their bye week before LSU comes callin’!Current Line: Alabama (-29.5)
Miami-FL made an EXCEPTIONAL hire when they picked up Al Golden. It reminds me a lot of when Miami-FL hired Butch Davis & what resulted from that hiring with the possibility of Golden turning into another Jimmy Johnson for the Hurricanes. Clearly the team is improving as the season progresses under Golden & I think he’s in a perfect situation to get the talent level back up to “THE U” standards. GT can’t afford to lose here and Miami-FL will be motivated to play well. In his last 3 games, QB Jacory Harris is 45 of 68 (66.2%) for 709 yards & 8TD without a pick so keep & eye on him especially because GT’s defense hasn’t been fantastic. My thinking is that GT rebounds, but another Canes win could show the tide is turning a bit. A win here should put THE U at 4-3 with a REAL shot at 9-3/8-4 & a chance at the ACC Championship game. Current Line: Miami-FL (-3)
LOVE LOVE LOVE West Virginia. The Mountaineers travel to Syracuse where I’m guessing they’ll give Doug Marrone & his boys a thorough whippin’, but Marrone seems to be a helluva coach & Syracuse wont’ lay down easily. These are the best kinds of games because they can give us insight into how dominant a team might be. I think WVU comes away with a victory here, BUT Syracuse isn’t going to lie down & they’ll play hard for 60 minutes. If WVU pounds them in their own backyards while the Orange bust nut for Marrone, then WVU is looking like a team that is going to give some poor unsuspecting BCS opponent a run for their life! Current Line: West Virginia (-14)
As you can see, this game probably isn’t going to amount to too much & makes the list for much the same reasons that Alabama/Tennessee make the list. It’s not this way nationally, but when you think about Oklahoma, they are fighting issues with perceptions. Think about it. If you had to go with undefeated teams that played more difficult schedules, wouldn’t you think LSU, Oklahoma St. & Clemson have the Sooners beat? Heck, if you believe LSU is the best team in the nation then it’s entirely possible to argue that Oregon is better than the Sooners. I don’t doubt how good Oklahoma is, but from a logical standpoint based on strength of schedule, Oklahoma should probably be trailing. They need blowout wins. Current Line: Oklahoma (-29)
USF is the favorite here & it probably has more to do with Cincinnati’s record from last season rather than their 5-1 mark. Sure the Bearcats haven’t beaten anyone & they did lost to Tennessee, but even with the loss, UC is on average beating teams by 25ppg! USF is one of the more frustrating teams in the nation. They get an early season road win over Notre Dame, but can’t manage to beat Pittsburgh (who the Irish beat in Pittsburgh) or Connecticut. It would be just like USF to beat Cincinnati this week, but turn around & lose to Rutgers the following week! I don’t get it. I hope UC wins as Butch Jones’ star is definitely on the rise & it’s exciting to see where he might land. Current Line: South Florida (-3)
An incredibly underrated game, both teams come into this one at 5-1 with SMU having the best record in CUSA at 3-0. How about a little love for SMU RB Zach Line! The Mustang RB is on pace to finish the season with 1,330 yards & 26TD! Southern Miss’ rush defense isn’t fantastic so it’ll be interesting to see how SMU HC June Jones uses Line. SMU’s defense is also better than Southern Miss’s. This could be a breakout game for Jones & the Ponies. People in Dallas have been waiting a LONG TIME for SMU to get back up to the top of college football. A win here could give enough momentum for wins over Tulsa & Houston! That happens? SMU is looking at 11-1 heading into the CUSA Championship game! Despite not being a BCS team, SMU being good helps college football so I’m rooting for them! Current Line: S.Mississippi (-3)
Game makes the grade because Kansas St. is 6-0. The Wildcats will certainly get to 7-0, but despite all this recent love gravitating towards KSU HC Bill Snyder, don’t forget that in KSU’s glory days the Wildcats never played for a national championship. Here they are 6-0, but have yet to play Texas, Texas A&M, Oklahoma or Oklahoma St! I have no doubt that KSU is going to walk into Lawrence & drop the thunder on the Jayhawks, but questions about the validity of an undefeated record are going to see some results after this week’s tuneup. Current Line: Kansas St. (-10.5)
How bad does it suck to be Indiana right now? Not only did you lose your 5-star QB commit in Gunner Kiel this week, but you also have to prepare to go on the road to Iowa where you are almost 4TD dogs! The rumors about HC Kevin Wilson are almost out of control in the Hoosier state. Maybe he’ll work out, but it certainly seems like the odds are stacked against him. The problems at Indiana certainly seem systemic in nature. I think this football team can win games, but they have to start looking at advanced football metrics to identify candidates some of the bigger boys might have overlooked. Current Line: Iowa (-23.5)
I thought Air Force would be better than this, but it turns out I was a bit optimistic for the Falcons this season. Obviously Boise St. makes this list because they are undefeated, but in reality this is a game on the blue turf which means the Broncos should roll yet again. It’s a broken record at this point, but Boise’s schedule sucks. From a different perspective, remember that Boise St. is never going to play for a national championship because they might actually win. If that happens, how can you not let them defend it if they go undefeated the following year? That means all AQ-conference schools are playing for 1 spot for a championship. It’ll never happen. Current Line: Boise St. (-29.5)
Not exactly a move the meter game. The Beavers are 1-5 while the Cougars a surprising 3-3. This is a neat game only because it could represent two programs going in vastly different direction. Oregon St. has been awful this season while Wazzou might finally be rising out of the mire it’s been in for quite some time. A win here gives WSU a 4-3 record needing just 2 wins out of their last 5 games to get bowl eligible. They could conceivably get there. As for the Beavers, I love the program, but is Mike Riley’s time finally up? I certainly hope not. Current Line: Washington St. (-3.5)
Houston is here because they are a 6-0 team so their games automatically become interesting from that standpoint. But there is certainly more to it than that! Marshall is actually a bit underrated in my opinion. Remember that the Herd have wins over Southern Miss & beat Louisville in Kentucky. Their 3-4 record includes losses to Virginia Tech, West Virginia, UCF & Ohio. Houston should roll, and roll big, but nobody thought Marshall was going to beat Southern Miss either. Oddly enough, doesn’t it seem like Houston QB Case Keenum is having an awfully quiet year? The Cougars are 6-0, Keenum is going to break every college passing record known to man, he’s on pace for 34TD to 4INT and yet you almost don’t hear anything about him. Very odd. Current Line: Houston (-23)
I’ve said this before about the MAC, but one of the things that makes college football so exciting it that even conferences that aren’t a part of the BCS really do have some games that are exciting. Tulsa is 3-3 (2-0) but remember that those 3 losses came against Oklahoma, Oklahoma St. & Boise St. Those 3 are a combined 18-0! Tulsa could be the one team that upsets Houston’s applecart when it’s all said & done and I wouldn’t be surprised if Tulsa ran the table from this point heading into the bowl season at 10-3 with a legitimate claim to top-15 if not top-10 status! So why the interesting game against the Owls? Well, Rice isn’t as awful as you think and with this being a home game could put up a decent fight. Who knows what will happen if Lady Luck gets involved? Current Line: Tulsa (-10.5)

October 22, 2011 Posted by | Air Force, Alabama, Auburn, Boise St., Cincinnati, Clemson, Georgia Tech, Houston, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas St., LSU, Marshall, Miami-FL, Michigan St., Missouri, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma St., Oregon St., Rice, SMU, South Florida, Southern Miss, Stanford, Syracuse, Tennessee, Texas Tech, Tulsa, USC, Washington, Washington St., West Virginia, Wisconsin | Leave a comment

2011 NCAA Football – Week 6 Best Games

Week 6 is the first week of the college football season that is a little benign. We don’t have any jaw dropping INCREDIBLE games this week. Oklahoma/Texas is probably the best game of the week & even the shine of that game is a little dull because of the problems Texas has had since Colt McCoy left for the Cleveland Browns! I feels like a week that should go according to plan, but if there is going to be hiccups it’s likely to happen in middling conference games as mild to moderate surprises.

I just want to make a quick note and say that these are the most interesting games to me this week in descending order of importance. Obviously I think the most interesting and most important game of the week is the Sooners/Longhorns matchup. This should give you an idea of why the games are in the order they are.

ROAD PREDICTION HOME
THE RED RIVER RIVALRY! This probably doesn’t seem like much of a game when you consider the Sooners are double digit favorites, and frankly I’m not sure it will be. Texas is still probably the 4th best team in the Big XII which seems incredible so Oklahoma should have no problems winning. Then again, you never really know in big time rivalry games & it’s not like the Longhorns don’t have as much talent as any team in the nation. Texas still has some issues. They are pretty darn young with a RB/QB situation that isn’t completely resolved. Oklahoma is practically the exact opposite. Boomer Sooner rolls. Current Line: Oklahoma (-10.5)!
This line actually started as LSU (-12) so you can see that bettors simply don’t like the Gators. It’s easy to see why. LSU can easily make an argument they are the undisputed #1 team in the nation & they are playing at home. Last week they beat UK 35-7 even though it was fairly clear that they were overlooking the Wildcats towards their date with Florida. It certainly doesn’t help that Florida lost John Brantley in the Alabama game while a true freshman will be making his first ever start in Death Valley! Wow. Dear Jeff Driskel: Welcome to primetime SEC football! The Bayou Bengals should be outstanding. Current Line: LSU (-13.5)
It’s really amazing that Arkansas is favored by 10 points here. A win over Texas A&M I guess will do amazing things for you. Amazingly enough this line started as Auburn (-8)! I’m convinced Arkansas is good. They are a flawed team with their rush defense, but I think they could easily finish the season 10-2. What we don’t really know is how good Auburn is. I’m not worried too much about the line. Auburn was a double digit dog at South Carolina & won. They were a dog against Mississippi St. & won. A win here proves that the rebuilding isn’t really taking place, but rather a reloading with a few stumbling blocks. A win here makes Auburn the 3rd best team in the SEC West, which possibly means the 3rd best team in the SEC period. Current Line: Arkansas (-10).
Losing WR Justin Hunter was a brutal blow to the Vols, but the more I see Tennessee the more I like them. QB Tyler Bray is playing out of his mind while RB Tauren Poole still hasn’t hit his stride. Tennessee finds themselves in a unique situation. They probably aren’t good enough to compete nationally under Derek Dooley’s rebuild, but Georgia lost to SC while SC lost to Auburn. Florida just lost their starting QB so a win here over Georgia could open the SEC up quite a bit. They get UGA & SC in Knoxville so they’ll need to beat LSU or Alabama since they already lost to Florida, but one game at a time right? In Georgia’s case, the SC loss opens the East back up. This is a big game for both squads. Current Line: Georgia (-2.5)
My guess is Nebraska gets the job done in Lincoln because I don’t think Ohio St.’s defense will play as well as it did against Michigan St. This could get interesting for the Buckeyes because it could mean the beginning of the end. A loss here means Ohio St. has lost 3 of their last 4 games and their next two games are at Illinois & a home date against Wisconsin. They could easily be 3-5 before getting games against Indiana & Purdue to get back to 5-5. That leaves Penn St. & Michigan which could easily mean 5-7! Luke Fickell isn’t going to survive, but if he does, the first step is beating Nebraska. This game is incredibly pivotal for the Buckeyes. Current Line: Nebraska (-10.5)
A real test of strength against strength, I think Notre Dame’s defense isn’t being talked about enough as the Irish are allowing just 18.6ppg and have the 19th best rush defense in the nation allowing just 91 rushing yards per game! Air Force of course runs that triple option that Navy & Georgia Tech run. As you can imagine, the Falcons are 3rd in the nation in rush offense averaging over 360ypg! The Irish are 14pt favorites & I’m skeptical they cover that spread although I think the Irish will win. I respect the hell out of Air Force, but they’ve ran it up on some cupcake teams & TCU hammered them. Notre Dame’s defense is A LOT better than TCU’s. Current Line: Notre Dame (-14)
This game is here mostly on past reputation. Anytime the Hurricanes & Hokies go at it, it seems like national news. Then again, Miami-FL is in the tank and the Hokies just took a beating at home against Clemson. With Georgia Tech playing like it has as well as North Carolina being good, VT & THE U might be mid-tier teams in the ACC Coastal, but at least one of these teams gets a quality win that gives them a divisional win & at least a passing thought of getting to the ACC Championship game. No disrespect to GT or Clemson, but the ACC hurts when Miami-FL & Florida St. aren’t hooking up in the ACC Championship game. I like this game simply because of the jerseys. Current Line: Virginia Tech (-7.5)
Normally I wouldn’t have thought this game would be such a good one, but Northwestern QB Dan Persa came back last week against Illinois & went 10 of 14 for 123 yards & 4TD! Northwestern probably should have beaten the 4-0 Illini in a decent sized upset before falling 38-35. The Wildcats will now have to deal with Denard Robinson & the Wolverines. It’ll be interesting to see how Persa plays in his 2nd game, but if you believe Michigan is holding to the same pattern they have in the last couple of years, this would be the time for them to lose a game. I don’t necessarily is going to happen, but Persa is the kind of QB that can carry a team in the Big 10 & get a win. I think this is a different Michigan team under Brady Hoke & the defense is solid. I think Persa won’t be able to do enough, but don’t be surprised if NW keeps this very close. Current Line: Michigan (-7.5)
Can you really ever count on a Bill Snyder led Kansas St. team? I really can’t believe that Kansas St. was the team that gave Robert Griffin & the Baylor Bears their first loss. Forget about being in the Big XII’s top-4, but this is an interesting game to see which team is chomping at the bit to get past Texas into that top-4 spot in the conference. Mizzou QB James Franklin is an extremely poor man’s Robert Griffin & although K-State beat Baylor last week, they didn’t exactly stop Griffin either. I’d venture to say Missouri’s defense is a bit better than Baylor’s so a Missouri win here would make the Baylor loss seem ridiculous to Baylor fans. Unfortunately I think this is what happens. Current Line: Missouri (-4)
Obviously this game has no national juice to it, but the storylines here are pretty darn good. The Vegas line in this game started at UCLA (-5.5) meaning too many people were actually taking the Cougars! Let’s not get crazy, Wazzou isn’t great, but they are coming off a conference road win! When was the last time that happened? Sure it was Colorado, but still! On the other side, UCLA HC Rick Neuheisel’s seat can’t get warmer I would think. A loss to Wazzou at home possibly costs him his job mid season! The Bruins are 2-3 with 3 understandable losses. A loss to the Cougars won’t be acceptable no matter what happens! Current Line: UCLA (-3.5)
Sort of an odd game in the Mountain West. It’s weird to look at TCU and see them at 3-2 with losses to Baylor & SMU! Nobody is touching Boise St. in the MWC, but although we all thought TCU would be right there with them, it certainly doesn’t look that way. San Diego St. isn’t bad and a win here at home could put SDS in the driver’s seat to finish 2nd in the conference. A win here also theoretically makes the conference get interesting. SDS lost to Michigan, but maybe Michigan is really that good and don’t forget the Aztecs get Boise St. in San Diego. If Boise is going to fall, it might be there considering Boise gets both Air Force & TCU at home. A very intriguing game for San Diego St. here. Current Line: TCU (-4.5)
I’M A HOMER BABY! Indiana gave Hoosier fans a little something to be happy about by losing to Penn St. last week only 16-10! To be totally honest, IU should get hammered by the Illini because Illinois actually is a pretty good team despite the tough game last week. Oddly enough a win here puts Illinois at 6-0! Everyone thought the Leaders division was going to come down to Wisconsin & Ohio St,. but maybe it’s going to be Illinois & Wisconsin & the Illini get the Badgers at home! Illinois should win big, but this game has an odd feel to it that could make it close. I like Kevin Wilson & although I think the Hoosiers are destined for 1-11/2-10 this season, there could be some oddball surprise win during the season. This matchup would definitely qualify. Current Line: Illinois (-14)

October 7, 2011 Posted by | Air Force, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kansas St., LSU, Miami-FL, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio St, Oklahoma, TCU, Tennessee, Texas, UCLA, Virginia Tech | Leave a comment

2011 NCAA Football – Week 2 Best Games

Week 2 of the college football season is upon us. I know it’s only week 2, but the funny thing about college football and me is that I already think it’s going too fast. The buildup is such that even after just one week it feels as if the season is already going too fast. One of the reasons the season feels like it goes so fast is because the importance of the games are such that each week really is a playoff game. Last week we saw Oregon, Notre Dame and Georgia lose important games all 3 possibly could have won. I still think all 3 teams have BCS dreams. Those dreams are still intact, but now they are tenuous dreams hanging by a thread as another loss could potentially end those dreams without a conference championship. In Notre Dame’s case I think their margin for error is a single game.

By the way, these games are listed in order of importance. These are the games I think are the most interesting this week in descending order of importance. Thus, to me the Georgia/South Carolina game is the most important of the week because I think both teams had schedules that set up for each team to run the table. That dream is dead for Georgia, but the Bulldogs still have a schedule & team capable of winning out and going 11-1 which wins the SEC East. South Carolina got by East Carolina this week so their undefeated dreams are still alive. The “least” important interesting game for me this week is Oregon/Nevada. Oregon should roll and I don’t doubt that they will, but the game is interesting because of the bounce back aspect for the Ducks.

ROAD PREDICTION HOME
Leave it to the SEC to get us going this week with a barnburner of a game out of the SEC East. I think this is essentially the game that will determine the SEC East championship unless Florida really surprises which actually wouldn’t be surprising given the state of the Georgia football team under Mark Richt. If your SC then this is the year to go 12-0 and make a serious run at a national championship. After losing to Boise St., Georgia needs this game BAD or else they start 0-2 and the heat on Richt is incredible. Extremely important game. SC can’t play the kind of mistake filled football they did against ECU between the hedges. Current Line: South Carolina (-3)!
I’m surprised Notre Dame is favored in this game although when you consider how the Irish lost last week, you can be sure Brian Kelly will have them chomping at the bit this week at the Big House. Michigan is coming off a nice 34-10 win over Western Michigan, but the game wasn’t as dominating for the Wolverine as the score would indicate. Western Michigan moved the ball and Denard Robinson didn’t have a great game. Both teams had significant weather issues last week. I don’t think Brian Kelly can start 0-2. That would be a season in the tank very quickly considering Michigan St. & Pittsburgh are up next. Current Line: Notre Dame (-3.5).
Penn St. is ranked 23rd in the country with Alabama being knocked down to #2 after LSU took over the #2 spot after beating Oregon. Expect Alabama to potentially regain the spot. Penn St. has a great defense of their own so it’ll be interesting to see how AJ McCarron does against the Nittany Lions, but the star of course is the Alabama defense. Last week Penn St. was able to run for 245 yards against Indiana St. Alabama held Kent St. to -9 rushing yards! This could be another example of how utterly dominant the Tide are and I wouldn’t be surprised with a shutout. Current Line: Alabama (-10).
Arizona QB Nick Foles might be the most underrated QB in the nation. He’s going to move himself into a 1st Rd. pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. At 6’5/245lbs and a cannon for an arm, he’s got more than one NFL team salivating at the prospect. Last week against Northern Arizona, he passed for 412 yards & 5TD in the Wildcats 41-10 win. Brandon Weeden is getting massive press and Oklahoma St. can score at will, Foles will be the best QB on the field and will welcome the shootout. Current Line: Oklahoma St. (-14).
It’s weird that this is being billed as the SEC game of the week when Georgia & South Carolina are hooking up. I don’t think this will be much of a game. I think the Bulldogs are a legitimate top-10 team while Auburn had to pull a rabbit out of their hat last week to get by Utah St. at home! That doesn’t spell victory this week when Mississippi St. comes to town. Interestingly enough, I think Auburn fans are going to be seeing some familiar situations with Chris Relf playing QB for MSU who I think is going to put on a pretty good Cam Newton impersonation. Expect Vick Ballard to run at will and MSU to completely dominate the national champions. They’ll easily cover that line. Current Line: Mississippi St. (-6.5).
This should be an interesting game. Texas played well last week in beating Rice while BYU did themselves a favor by going on the road to an SEC team’s stadium and coming away with a 14-13 win over Mississippi. Granted, Ole’ Miss is the weakest (well, Auburn might be) team in the SEC West, but it’s not exactly easy winning in SEC country. I don’t know if that gives the Cougars any confidence going to Austin, but it’ll be a good test for the 24th ranked Longhorns. Garrett Gilbert wasn’t great last week, but BYU’s defense isn’t fantastic. This should be a good an interesting game more so for Texas although a BYU win certainly looks impressive as they’d start the year 2-0 with road wins in Oxford & Austin. Current Line: Texas (-7).
It’s amazing that Missouri is this much of a favorite in Tempe. The Tigers would be a 13.5 favorites if the game were in Columbia! Missouri beat Miami-OH last week 17-6 which looks bad, but Missouri’s defense was great while new QB James Franklin struggled a bit in his first start as a true sophomore. The Sun Devils hammered UC-Davis last week with everyone playing well. Arizona St. did a great job of running the football, but that isn’t likely to happen against Mizzou. It’ll be interesting because a lot of people think ASU is going to represent the Pac-12 South in the Pac-12 Championship game. Current Line: Missouri (-7.5).
Some of it is that Jerry Kill is an excellent football coach and Minnesota fans should be extremely happy. On the other hand, nobody thought Minnesota would lose to USC by the score of 19-17 in Southern California! If MarQueis Gray doesn’t get injured, maybe Minnesota starts the Kill Era 1-0! Utah comes calling this week and the Utes rush defense did a good job last week. This is Utah’s first game as a Pac-12 member which is interesting, but this is a game that is certainly more important for USC. If the Trojans win handily then Minnesota is A LOT better than we think. If USC loses then that program has clearly taken a step back. Either outcome is instructive for the upcoming season. Current Line: USC (-8.5).
I’m telling you right now that Tennessee loses this game and doesn’t cover that line. I know it was Austin Peay, but Cincinnati beat them 72-10 and ran for almost 400 yards! That’s ridiculous. Seriously. Tennessee had a great game themselves beating Montana 42-16. Tyler Bray & Tauren Poole had excellent games. I love what Butch Jones is doing and Cincinnati is a really underrated football program. I’m not sure they can reach the heights like they did under Brian Kelly, but you never know. I think this is interesting because a Cincinnati wins shows that Tennessee isn’t all the way back just yet under Dooley and that the Big East has some good football teams. Current Line: Tennessee (-4.5).
I was a little disappointed last week when Air Force only beat South Dakota 37-20, but then again, South Dakota did beat Minnesota last season. Air Force has a great coach in Troy Calhoun and a great team this year running that triple option. TCU looked extremely mortal last week against Baylor, but some of that was that TCU couldn’t cover Robert Griffin throwing the football. The Frogs won’t have that problem as Air Force is going to run 99% of the time. Still, TCU can lose this football game which would be odd because it would send them to an 0-2 start. The last time TCU started a season 0-2 was back in 1999 when they lost to Arizona & Northwestern to start the season. Current Line: TCU (-1).
Not really an important game this week, but Iowa/Iowa St. is one of my favorite rivalry games to watch. Iowa should win this game after beating Tennessee Tech 34-7 last week. The Hawkeyes gave up a bit too much on defense, but I’m not sure ISU has enough offense to take adavantage of a bad day by the Hawkeye defense if it happens again. The Cyclones needed a last minute TD to beat Northern Iowa last week, but a couple of years ago Iowa needed a couple of last second blocked FGs to get by the Panthers so I won’t read too much into that. Maybe the Northern Iowa games are getting to be just as dramatic as this showdown? Current Line: Iowa (-6.5).
As you can see by the line this isn’t supposed to be much of a game, but I think it’ll be interesting to see how Oregon and Chip Kelly bounce back after last week’s loss to LSU. Specifically I’d like to see how much tighter of a game the Ducks can play. Last week they committed way too many peanlties and turnovers. Nevada isn’t the same caliber as a team like LSU, but Chris Ault is a good coach and the Wolfpack will play fundamentally sound football. The game would be more interesting if Colin Kaepernick were suiting up for Nevada, but this is Nevada’s first game so they’ve had plenty of prep time. Oregon never loses at Autzen Stadium and they won’t this week, but how amazing will their play be? Current Line: Oregon (-26.5).

September 8, 2011 Posted by | Air Force, Alabama, Arizona, Arizona St., Auburn, BYU, Cincinnati, Georgia, Michigan, Mississippi St., Missouri, Notre Dame, Oklahoma St., Penn St., South Carolina, TCU, Tennessee, Texas, USC, Utah | Leave a comment