Ten Things I learned this week in college football
Written by Curt Popejoy on 11/08/2010
10. There is no reason to panic in Norman - Yes, the Oklahoma Sooners probably should have beaten the Texas A&M Aggies. And their hopes for a Big 12 Title and BCS Bowl bid are pretty much gone. But it's ok. First, no Sooner fans went into this season with National Title aspirations, so let's not be shocked here that they aren't quite ready. And look to the future. This team is playing 13 Freshman on their two deep, and 13 more Sophomores. So between 48 guys on their 2 deep, 26 are Freshman or Sophomores. The future is bright.
9. TCU is good or Utah is bad, m'kay? - I said in my my preview that Utah was overrated and I heard about it, but it played itself out. Having watched all the top teams play several games each this year, I am starting to warm up to the notion TCU is one of the 2 best teams in the country. I never thought that the defense could reload, but they did, and how. Their offense isn't as explosive as a team like Oregon or Boise State, but the defense is much better than both. As for Utah, they are fortunate they didn't fall further because when you are undefeated and get 40+ hung on you at home, you are a joke.
8. LSU is a mystery or Alabama hates me - Everytime I get back on the Alabama bandwagon, they let me down. And just when I think Les Miles can't pull out another miracle with his Tigers, he does it. This puts LSU squarely in the Top 5 of the BCS, somewhere I never thought they would be. Congrats to the Tigers, there is no team who likes this more than Auburn.
7. Four undefeated is two too many - This season is starting to look like the poster argument for a Playoff. And I hate this. So I am going to ask Santa for Oregon to lose to Arizona and Auburn to lose to Alabama. That would set up a TCU v Boise State National Title game. Is it possible that two teams from non-AQ conferences would play for the big crystal football? I think it is. It would certainly be an exciting game and all those one loss teams can get shuffled into their respective bowl games. Thanks Santa.
6. Andy Dalton has thrown his way into the Heisman discussion - I'm not a fan. Just puttin' it out there. But his struggles from early in the season are forgotten for now, and after torching Utah for 355 yards and an 80% completion percentage with 3 TDs, and so few other players really stepping up, he's in the mix. I'll have my Heisman Ballot out later today, but *gulp* Dalton is in my top 5.
5. Cam Newton is worth more than $200,000. - Newton showed no ill effects of all the latest controversy as the Auburn Tigers rolled. Let me say this: do I believe that these agent types offer up high profile players for cash? Of course they do. Do schools pay it? Yep. Is it reasonable to think Newton didn't know there was big money on the table, and beyond that, he didn't get a cut? I have a hard time with the last one. I am not going to villify Newton for this, but I really struggle to remove him from any knowledge of this. If so, he's the dumbest kid ever not to get in on some of this cash. Regardless, with The USC greasefire the future is this in NCAA football. Players, agents/handlers, alumni, and staffs are under the microscope. More on all of this in a separate blog.
4. I Love Joe Pa - Seeing Penn State Nittany Lions head coach Joe Paterno get his 400th career coaching win made me very happy. Joe Pa has been a staple in college football as long as I can remember and even though I am not a Penn State fan, I cannot deny that these sorts of things are great for the sport. Just like when teams like Notre Dame and Michigan are down, it's bad for the sport, when something like this happens, it really shows just how great things can be. Oh, and congrats to Penn State RB Evan Royster on a great game. Ultimately Royster is the best RB on the roster, and the fact he hasn't been used more in his final season is criminal. We saw what he is capable of this past weekend.
3. Landry Jones, I hate you so much right now - Yes, two Oklahoma things. Get over it. I know it's hard to follow a legend, and whoever was coming in after Sam Bradford was going to have it hard, but Landry Jones gives me high blood pressure. I sincerely hope the Sooners staff make the next offseason an open QB competition because they are going to have some remarkable talent on both sides of the ball, and I hate to see that held back by average QB play.
2. Oregon don't look as great as I thought - Their scoring offense is dominant. No doubt about that. 9 games in and their low in scoring has been 42 points. But giving up 30+ points in 3 games is a little troubling to me. Not to say they don't deserve to be no.1 because you could flip them and Auburn in the top 2 and I'd have no beef either way. But in a National Title scenario, against a team like TCU who will score 30+ on that Ducks D, can they score 30+ on the Horned Frogs? I'm not sure. I think if you want to win a Championship, you have to be successful in all 3 phases of the game and Oregon is lacking in at least one and maybe two. We'll see if the Nate Costa injury comes back to get them later in the season. Along similar lines Auburn's defense is mediocre at best, and I'm being kind. Auburn conceded 24 points to the FCS's Chattanooga. TCU have conceded 23 points... in their last 6 games combined. Against better opposition too.
1. The NFL draft looks to be packed at some positions and really lacking in others - Obviously this is a draft site, so I watch every game through a scout's eyes, and when you start to break down the positions of strength in the upcoming draft, the obvious choices are there like Quarterback and Cornerback, but Defensive End and Offensive Tackle? Before the season things looked bright for Defensive End but too many guys haven't lived up to their billing and Offensive tackle, a typically coveted spot, is way down. Expect more in depth draft looks as the season starts to wrap up.
Last Edited: 11/08/2010