College football games of the week: The good, the bad and the ugly
What a fantastic suck of sports it has been the last 10 days. To recap: This happened, and then the grand finale. Fortunately I am very positive, shallow and have the attention span of a gnat on Red Bull and I will move on… The League is back on! There is college football on Tuesdays again! And that guy dove off the moon or something! What were we talking about? Let’s get to the football this week!
We now change the rankings to the BCS rankings
No. 7 South Carolina Gamecocks at No. 2 Florida Gators: 2:30 p.m. on CBS
The Gamecocks are rebounding from a tough loss, but have no time to feel sorry for themselves as they head to The Swamp with the Florida Gators, whose meteoric rise to the top is reminiscent of the Auburn Tigers in 2010. I can’t get my head around why I don’t trust Florida, because time and again they prove they belong, but I don’t see them getting through the SEC unscathed and this could be the loss.
This should be a low scoring game as both defenses are excellent, but a healthy Marcus Lattimore is the difference in Gainesville. Of course, that hip injury could keep him from the game entirely. If he plays, Cocks 24, Gators 20. If he doesn't, Gators 20, Cocks 14. This is the definition of waffling.
No. 6 LSU Tigers at No. 18 Texas A&M Aggies: 11 a.m. ESPN
The Aggies are playing well and, gulp¸are better than the Texas Longhorns right now. That is going to come to screeching halt on Saturday afternoon. I don’t expect Les Miles to blow out the Ags, but I expect A&M is going to see some athletes they haven’t seen very often. And hey Les, please please shut these people up. Partly gut, partly homework and party wish, I think LSU wins this game by a touchdown. At least. Mad Hatters 30, Ags 21.
No. 4 Kansas State Wildcats at No. 13 West Virginia Mountaineers: 6 p.m. FOX
What a mess you made, Tech. You ruined the best Big 12 game of the year. No, no, no! Don’t you blame Texas for what they did last week. This is your fault. YOUR FAULT.
A contrast of styles awaits as Kansas State likes to chew up the clock and yards on the ground with the under-the-radar Heisman candidate quarterback Collin Klein while Couch Fires’ way-over-the-radar Heisman candidate QB Geno Smith throws passes even when his team is on defense. The K-State defense is going to limit his production because they are very good, but after a week where they played poorly and a rabid home crowd at night in Morgantown, the Mountaineers climb back into the Big 12 Title race with a big home win. WVA 38, K-State 34.
Worst Game of the Week
Idaho Vandals at Louisiana Tech Bulldogs: 6 p.m.
Sonny Dykes has La Tech playing well. Last week they were ranked and undefeated and lost to Texas A&M, 59-57, after a furious comeback fell short. Actually a few comebacks as you will see below. Now the mad Bulldogs host Idaho, who stinks. They allow 38 points per game and La Tech leads the nation with 53 points scored per game. That not good. That not good at all.
First of all, if I were really gambling on these games, there’s a good chance the bookie would have already murdered me for all the money I would owe him that I surely would not pay. Good thing that’s not the case.
No. 3 South Carolina Gamecocks at No. 8 LSU Tigers: 6 p.m. ESPN
Why is was included: Top 10 showdown, SEC showdown
Prediction: South Carolina is for real, LSU is stumbling, Cocks 20 LSU 16
Reality: South Carolina is for real, LSU is not stumbling, LSU 23, Cocks 20
LSU's offense looked much, much better, but for 55 of the 60 game minutes, I thought I had this one nailed. LSU led 16-14 with 6:45 to play and I thought surely South Carolina would take the ball down the field and score and their defense would shut down the mighty Tigers to close it out. But as is the case many times, I was wrong.
Instead the Gamecocks lost 12 yards in three plays and punted and the very first play after the punt Jeremy Hill raced 50 yards for the game-winning touchdown. Carolina scored late, but their onside kick didn't work and LSU ran out the clock. Well done, Les, you circle the wagons as well anyone out there
No. 17 Stanford Cardinal at No. 7 Notre Dame Fighting Irish: 2:30 p.m. CBS
Why is was included: Top 20 match up, everyone east of the Mississippi loves the Irish
Prediction: Shouldn't be included, the Irish are awesome and I am finally buying in and they win, 30-13
Reality: It should have been included, Irish are awesome but Stanford is pretty good as well. Irish win in overtime, 20-13
I got half the score right. Or maybe not. Facing a 4th & Goal inside the one and down 20-13 in overtime, the Cardinal ran Stepfan Taylor up the middle. His initial surge was stopped, but he kept moving feet and climbing over the people on the ground in front of him and into the end zone... but a whistle was blown and he was ruled down.
It was reviewed and confirmed. Game over. Taylor and many of the Cardinal players were certain he was in, but the officials said otherwise. Big win for Notre Dame, who out-physicaled the physical Cardinal. Now the media circus begins. I don't know if you guys remember what it's like in the media when Notre Dame is good, but I do. It's coming, folks, so get ready.
No.21 Texas A&M Aggies vs. No. 24 Louisiana Tech Bulldogs: 8 p.m. ESPNU
Why it was included: Top 25 match up, Whoop!
Prediction: La Tech is for real, I don't like Aggies, Tech 38 Ags 35.
Reality: La Tech is for real, the Aggies are also for real regardless of my feelings. Ags 59, Tech 57
They call him Johnny Football and I can see why. Aggie QB Johnny Manziel accounted for six touchdowns in Shreveport with 181 yards on the ground with three scores and 395 through the air with three more scores. A&M, winners of five straight, put up 678 yards on the Bulldogs... but it almost wasn't enough.
They took a 39-16 lead to half time only to see La Tech score 21 third quarter points to cut the lead to 46-44 with 12 minutes to play. They also had a 59-44 lead with two minutes to play, but the Bulldogs scored one play later, got the onside kick and drove down and scored again, but missed the game-tying 2-point conversion. A second onside kick was recovered by A&M and they ran out the clock. They won the game, but Kevin Sumlin didn't seem happy. But who cares! SEC! WHOOP!
Worst Game of the Week
Kentucky Wildcats at Arkansas Razorbacks: 6 p.m.
Why it was included: They both stink, nobody cares
Prediction: They both stink, nobody cares
Reality: They both stink, nobody cares, but Kentucky is worse. Arkansas 49, Kentucky 7
Rumors abound that Bobby Petrino could be on his way back to Kentucky to take over the Wildcats. I am not a Kentucky fan but I can see why they are excited about that possibility: First, he's an excellent coach and is a proven winner. Second, he coached at arch rival Louisville and they haven't been the same since he left, which clearly would bother them. It would also make that Louisville/UK game interesting for the rest of us. Make it happen, Coach Cal.