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  • Published: Oct 26th, 2009
  • Category: NFL Football
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What did we learn from the College football weekend for 10/26/09?

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football

The top 3 teams have separated themselves from the rest of the pack. Texas looks to be the first to get its ticket punched by virtue of an easier schedule if they get by #14 Oklahoma State this Saturday. That will not be an easy game because the Cowboys are playing very well now since they stubbed their toe against Houston.

Texas has only a home game against Kansas and a rivalry game at Texas A&M left as a challenge after OK St. I think that Texas will go undefeated and get to the big game.

Both top SEC teams have big games this weekend. Florida takes on Georgia and Alabama hosts #9 LSU. If that game were at LSU, I would think it would be a tossup. At home, Alabama should win and probably get the top spot in all the polls based on a win over a top 10 team only if the voters forget the less than impressive 12-10 win over Tennessee at home last week. Alabama came within a fingernail of losing the game when NT Cody blocked his second FG attempt in the 4th quarter of the game.

The Vols were the sandwich game between #22 South Carolina and #9 LSU. Every national champ has a close call or 2 on their way to the title. Bama played down to the Vols level on O. The Vols D refused to let QB McElroy throw down field and Bama averaged just 4.1 per pass attempt. Bama also struggled in the red zone. They failed on 2 trips there having to kick short FGs rather than scoring TDs. They led the entire game holding the Vols to just 3 points until the 4th when the Vols had 3 drives including a TD and the 2 blocked FG attempts.

After a close call against Arkansas at home, Florida had a solid if not impressive win at Mississippi State. The most significant hurdles the Gators face to get to the SEC Title game are against Georgia, at South Carolina and their rivalry game at home against an always dangerous Florida State. Neither of those should provide an upset which of course means the Gators may lose one of them.

Of the two schedules, I believe that LSU represents more of a challenge than the group that Florida will face.

#4 in the BcS Iowa represents the biggest threat to the top 3 because the computers love them and because they still have a game on the road @ #17 Ohio State. The Hawks have to hope that the Buckeyes continue to win until that game. Given the way the OSU offense has failed to move the ball, that is not a sure thing at all. However, the Hawks overcame the crowd, and the odds makers in winning on the last play of the game. They only way they get into the big game is to be undefeated and have 2 of the top 3 lose at least one each. The voters have Iowa ranked 8th and that hurts them in the BcS.

#5 USC should jump over Iowa if they win at #10 Oregon Saturday. They also have a game against #20 Arizona on December 5 but it is very doubtful that the Wildcats will still be ranked by then because they have games against #10 Oregon and at # 24 California. So USC has to win at Oregon big to have a shot then hope that 2 of the big 3 lose a game.

#6 TCU is undefeated and is the best chance of the non-BcS league reps to get into the big game but there are a lot of chips that have to fall in their favor to do so. The computers like them as well ranking them 4th. The Frogs were outstanding in a 38-7 win at then #16 BYU. They still have a game against now #16 Utah in a couple of weeks. TCU is an outstanding team and deserves better than they will get. The Frogs will get a nice BcS bowl but have 0 chance to get to the big game.

#7 Boise State has 6 games on its schedule but no ranked teams. Their only statement win was in week 1 over Oregon. They are 5th in the polls but the computer has them 8th. They are playing well but can never get any big schools to go there and play a home and home. That hurts the teams chances to break the glass ceiling of the “BcS” leagues.

#8 Cincinnati is also perfect and has 2 games against ranked teams. They will face #21 West Virginia and # 15 Pittsburgh. Their chances were long to start with and are longer now because they have lost their QB Pike for awhile. Without him they have little chance of completing the year perfect and no chances of getting more than a crumb off the BcS table.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: Florida,Georgia,Alabama,LSU,Tennessee,Texas,Oklahoma State,Kansas,Texas A&M,South Carolina,Arkansas,Mississippi State,Iowa,Ohio State,Oregon,Arizona,California,USC,TCU,Boise State,BYU,Cincinnati,West Virginia,Pittsburgh,NCAA FOOTBALL,BCS,BCS Rankings

What to look for in College football for week 8.

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football

1 Florida @ Miss St.

The Gators will face a pretty good O in the Bulldogs. QB Lee has a passer rating of 112.3 and RB Dixon averages 5.2 per run. The Dogs have struggled on D against good teams. In losses to Auburn, 7 LSU and 13 Georgia Tech they gave up a total of 121 points. They will give up quite a few against Florida as well. Florida this year seems to loose concentration in games against lessor teams. That is particularly true when a tough game is next up. The Gators will play Georgia next which is a big rival. Florida will win but it could be closer than it should be.

Tennessee @ 2 Alabama

Bama has taken over the top spot in some of the rankings and that is well deserved. It has outplayed Florida against better competition. Bama has beaten 3 ranked teams and won the games easily. Their D is playing outstanding ball giving up just 9 points in the last 2 games against ranked teams. The Bama O has played well with QB McElroy having a 137.6 passing rating and 2 RBs averaging over 5 per carry.

Tennessee had a nice win last week over Georgia but faces 2 ranked teams in the next 2 weeks. The D has played well but the O is inconsistent. QB Crompton has been streaky but is completing less than 58% with 13 TDs and 9 picks. He has a set of good receivers as well. He has racked up a lot of the numbers against 2 teams. RB Hardesty averages 5.4 per carry. The O has struggled against good defenses. They will struggle badly against Bama. Bama wins.

3 Texas @ Missouri

The Horns tend to play with less energy after the Oklahoma game. But they have way too much for the Tigers. Missouri lost a lot in graduation or the draft and is not a physical team. They will be pushed all over the field by Texas and the Horns win.

4 Boise State @ Hawaii

Boise is 4th but has no chance of playing for the national championship. I don’t want to hear any crying from State fans because if they want to play for a title they need to schedule more than 1 tough opponent. The only ranked team they played was Oregon. The rest of their schedule is too weak to get the spot over a 1 loss SEC or Big 12 team. They will win at Hawaii and get a nice tan at the same time.

Louisville @ 5 Cincinnati

Cincy may have lost their QB Pike in the game against South Florida. Pike has led the team to 244 points in 6 games. His replacement is Collaros is an untested sophomore. Pike’s status is unknown. The Cincy D has played well and should have no problem with the Cards or next week against Syracuse. However, they have 4 tough games to end the season and will need Pike if they want to win out.

6 Iowa @ Michigan St.

Iowa has 2 tough road games left on its schedule and this is one of them. Iowa has a shot at the big game if it ends the season undefeated. Either Alabama or Florida will lose at least 1 game when they meet in the SEC Championship game. That leaves only Texas as the other candidate. The Hawk O is inconsistent but seems to show up in big games. If Iowa gets by MSU their only other road game is at Ohio State.

The MSU D is very tough with 12 sacks in the last 3 games. They stopped last year star RB Green on 4th and 1 to preserve a win over Iowa. The game is at night and it is MSU’s best shot to get to a New Years Day Bowl. The Spartans may be more dangerous than the Buckeyes to Iowa’s hopes. Iowa will win in a close game.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: ncaa football,NFL Draft,College football,Florida,Mississippi St.,Tennessee,Alabama,McElroy,Crompton,Hardesty,Texas,Missouri,Boise State,Hawaii,Oregon,Louisviiie,Cincinnati,Pike,Collaros,Iowa,Michigan State,Ohio State
  • Author:
  • Published: Oct 17th, 2009
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on What to look for this weekend in College Football.

What to look for this weekend in College Football.

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football

Arkansas @ 1 Florida

The Gator D shut the LSU O down last week to 3 points and less than 100 yards passing. This week Arkansas brings in another very hot offense led by former Michigan QB Mallett. The Hogs beat Auburn last week but this team plays much better at home. Look for Gator QB Tebow to look more comfortable and do more passing. The Hog D is playing better but is no match for Tebow et. al. The Gators win comfortably.

22 So. Carolina @ 2 Alabama

Alabama went to Mississippi and pummeled the Rebs 22-3. The score should have been a lot worse except for the inefficient passing game. Bama QB McElroy was only 15-35. But next to the over hyped Reb QB Snead he looked great. Snead was 11-34 with 4 interceptions. The Bama D is outstanding.

SC is much better at home where it beat then #4 Mississippi 16-10. They do not play well on the road but have a solid O led by QB Garcia (134 qb rating) and 3 good RBs. They are going to have a tough time moving against the Bama D. SC squeaked out a win last week at home against Kentucky but they will not leave Bama with one. Alabama wins.

20 Oklahoma VS. 3 Texas

This is the game of the week. The key will be how well Sooner QB Bradford really is. He was not tested too much last week against a very weak Baylor team. He will get a lot more pressure from the Texas D front 7. The Sooner running game is supposed to be outstanding but so far has not produced as advertised. Instead, they have depended on the passing game. Bradford was hurt against BYU but came back last week and looked good (27/49 389yds 1TD 0 int). That was Baylor but this is Texas.

Texas has looked steady but not spectacular against only 1 good team. They were asleep last week against Colorado until the second half. That will get them beaten badly this week. But this game is “THE” game for both teams. The Texas running game is not as good as expected either. The Oklahoma O line and the young WRs are the weak points. They won’t run the ball well and Texas wins in a tough game.

4 Virginia Tech @ 18 Georgia Tech

Since the opening loss to Alabama, no team has looked better than VTk. They beat 2 ranked teams back to back and are playing outstanding D. QB Taylor looks better each week and is making good decisions with the ball. He has a passer rating of 159.

GTk has to get out to a quick start to have any shot. They have a great running game but VTk will load the D line to take the running game away. The it will be up to GTk QB Nesbitt to move the ball in the air. He has a passer rating of 160 but is completing only 50.7 percent of his throws. Most of the TDs have been long runs after the catch because the opponent is playing the run. Nesbitt will have to complete some passes early in the game and on 1st and 2nd down because he will be blitzed heavily on 3rd and long. He will not be able to complete enough to score against VTk. VTk wins easily.

6 USC @ 25 Notre Dame

The difference in the game will be the USC D. It will stymie the ND O and harass QB Clausen. He will have to get rid of the ball very quickly which means that his WRs will have to get open. WR Rudolph has big shoes to fill due to the injury of Floyd. RB Allen is OK but the O line is no match for the USC D front 7. ND struggled to beat Washington last week.

USC has had 2 weeks to prepare for the game and QB Barkley is back. That gives USC a lift. The D has played very well despite losing a number of players last year. Forget all the talk around ND that “this is THE year.” It is not and USC will win.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: NCAA Football,NFL Draft,Rankings,College Football,Arkansas,Florida,South Carolina,Alabama,Oklahoma,Texas,Bradford,Snead,Kentucky,Baylor,Virginia Tech,Georgia Tech,Nesbitt,USC,Notre Dame
  • Author:
  • Published: Oct 12th, 2009
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on What did we learn from the College Football Weekend #7?

What did we learn from the College Football Weekend #7?

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1 Florida is clearly the best of the top 3 teams. It went to LSU at night and dominated what had been an explosive offense. LSU’s QB Jefferson was 11-17 but only got 96 yards. That was just not enough. The LSU running game was also contained by the Gator D.

Gator QB Tebow looked just OK coming back from the concussion. The Florida O was limited by the LSU defense. LSU showed it deserved to be in the top 10 but was not a contender for the national championship.

As I suggested last week, 2 Texas wasn’t mentally into the game against Colorado in the first half. The team was down 14-10 at the half. But in the second half the O woke up and put another 28 points on the board. However, there are some problems with the Texas team. They can not run the ball. They averaged only 2.2 yards per attempt against a very average Colorado D. That is not going to bode well for them against Oklahoma let alone a Florida or Alabama D.

3 Alabama took the (former #4) #20 Mississippi team apart and reassembled them incorrectly. The Bama D made Ole Miss QB Snead to be a fraud as a top NFL QB prospect. He just doesn’t read coverages well or perform under duress. Snead threw 4 interceptions and there could have been a couple more. It was not his best game. But so far against a mix of decent and not so good teams Snead has 9 TDs and 9 picks. He has lost his shot at a 1st round pick in the draft.

Mississippi has no more games against ranked teams. The losses against Alabama and South Carolina have proven that the team is not a contender but a pretender.

News flash—5 Virginia Tech is really good. They did what I said they would and crushed BC. The Tech D cause 3 turnovers and did not allow a score by BC until the 4th quarter when the game was in the bag. They have now beaten 2 ranked teams after a close loss at Alabama. If they can beat Georgia Tech next week on the road, they should be able to run the table and be in the conversation for the National Championship game. But as good as they are, they won’t be able to handle Florida.

There are problems on both sides of the ball for 9 Ohio State. They never should have beaten Wisconsin. The O generated 1 drive at the end of the 1st half for a touchdown. That was all that the O did on its own. The problem is QB Pryor’s inability to be consistently accurate and the O line’s inability to protect him. The line breaks down regularly on pass protection and fails to push a good D line off the ball in the running game. The report from OSU is that Pryor asked to throw more from the pocket in a pro style O to improve his pro prospects. It isn’t working. A 5 for 13 game for 87 yards is not going to win many games.

The new WR corps is below the quality of that last year but the fact is that Pryor has not progressed. In some ways like staring down the receiver he has regressed. If OSU is going to win against Iowa and Penn State, he is going to have to get better in a hurry.

The D can’t stop a solid running game on 3rd down. The Badgers didn’t run all over the Buckeye D but they converted key 3rd and 4th downs to keep drives going. It was only when they threw the ball that the Wisconsin O ran into trouble. The OSU D is going to have to do a better job stopping the run.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: Florida,NCAA Football,National Championship chase,LSU,Tebow,Texas,Colorado,Oklahoma,Alabama,NCAA Rankings,Mississippi,Snead,Virginia Tech,Boston College,Ohio State,Wisconsin,Pryor

What to look for in the College Games this week.

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1 Florida @ 4 LSU

QB Tim Tebow is reportedly going to start the game Saturday. In the first couple of series watch to see if he is running the ball and if he is using his head rather than risking it by sliding or going out of bounds before he takes a monster hit. The risk is once you have had a concussion you are more susceptible to them in the future. He has hurt his draft status because of the injury. A broken arm or knee would not have done as much damage as a concussion to his ranking in the draft.

The Florida running game beside Tebow is going to have to pick up the slack better than it did after the injury against Kentucky. Despite Tebow going out in the middle of the 3rd quarter, he still was the leading rusher in the game. No other back got 100 yards or more than 12 carries. Tebow got 16 in a little over a half of football.

The other aspect of the Florida game will be how effective will Tebow be in passing. He has yet to prove to most scouts that he is an NFL quality QB prospect in part because of questioned arm strength and partly because he has to change from a pure spread to an NFL style offense. That is not an easy transition. QB Brantley is a talented backup but does not offer the leadership that Tebow offers. If Tebow can’t go or has to come out, look for the Gators to run more and depend on Brantley to throw less to try not to lose the game. The game plan will become a lot more conservative.

LSU has its own concerns on offense. They are home and playing at night which is one of the best venues in college football. But the team ranks 80th in the nation in scoring TDs in the red zone. FGs are not going to beat Florida. They are going to have to score TDs.

QB Jefferson is 19 and the youngest QB starting in the SEC. He needs some help from the play caller if he is going to do better against the veteran Florida D than he has against the likes of Vanderbilt or Louisiana-Lafayette. They need him to do less reading and more rolling out. That should also help reduce the rush from the Gator front 7. He seems more comfortable reading half the field in a roll out than trying to read the entire field from the pocket.

Another problem LSU has in scoring inside the red zone is that they have not proven that they can run the ball into the endzone. That results in the D playing the pass exclusively inside the 20.

If Tebow plays the Gators win. If not, they lose.

Colorado @ 2 Texas

This is a trap game for Texas. They get Oklahoma next week. Traditionally Texas wins the game before the Red River Rivalry but not by much. Colorado is not a good team. It has lost to both Colorado State and Toledo. Look for a closer than expected game with the Horns winning.

3 Alabama @ 20 Mississippi

This game would have carried a lot more hype had not Ole Miss lost to South Carolina. Alabama is an outstanding team with a crushing D. This is QB Snead’s chance to prove he is a top NFL prospect. So far he has show the potential but not the production in big games. In what most people think was his highpoint in the defeat of Florida last year he was 9 for 20 for 185 and 2 TDs with 1 int. Not what he needs to prove his value.

Alabama can not look past Ole Miss because it has #25 SC, a road game at Tennessee and home against LSU in the next 3 weeks. This is put up or shut up time for the Tide. They need a big win here to prove their worthiness for the #3 spot. They will win but not by enough to satisfy the home folks.

Boston College @ 4 Virginia Tech

BC has had Tech’s number the last few years. But this year should be different. VT wins comfortably.

Wisconsin @ 9 Ohio State

The key to this game will be the ability of Wisconsin to run the ball with their outstanding O line against the D line of OSU. The Badgers are still trying to find out exactly who they are. They better find out before 3:30 on Saturday or it will be a long day. OSU wins but struggles as it always does.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: NCAA Football,Florida,LSU,Colorado,Texas,Alabama,Mississippi,Boston College,Virginia Tech,Colorado State,Toledo,Wisconsin,Ohio State,RATINGS,RANKING
  • Author:
  • Published: Oct 2nd, 2009
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on What to look for this weekend in College games.

What to look for this weekend in College games.

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football

Tonight Utah St. @ 20 BYU The Cougars should have no problem with Utah St. This game should be over by half time but probably won’t be. BYU has a habit of playing down to the competition even at home.

Tonight Pitt @ Louisville Pitt was stunned by NC State last week. They have looked good until that game but State controlled the ball over 37 minutes. The Pitt D could not get off the field. Louisville was thought by some to be a top 25 team before the season. They are not. Pitt wins easily.

#4 LSU @ #18 Georgia LSU is 4th by default. They are not that good. Their win over Washington looked a lot better than it was after the upset of USC. The team is struggling on O. They just got by a very weak Mississippi St. team last week 30-26. QB Jefferson has good passing stats against weak DBs and the Tigers can’t run the ball. Georgia is a better team and is getting 3 points at home. LSU plays better at night at home and neither is the case here. Take the Bulldogs and give the 3.

#7 USC @ #24 Cal USC will be without both QB Barkley and RB Johnson this week. The problem with the USC O is the O line. It just has not come around as quickly as everyone thought it would. Cal has problems of its own after a 42-3 loss last week to Oregon. Cal is over rated and it showed last week. USC wins by more than the 5 point spread.

#8 Oklahoma @ #17 Miami This is a very young Miami team playing a very young Sooner QB. Miami looks like a bunch of freshmen and sophomores playing great against both Florida St. and Georgia Tech then looking outclasses by Virginia Tech on the road. Which Miami will show up is anyone’s guess. But the Oklahoma D will show up. I would not touch this game with a 50 pole but I usually go with the best D. Oklahoma should cover 7.5 point spread despite a couple of interceptions thrown by QB Jones.

#22 Michigan @ Michigan St. Big Blue has a very slow defensive backfield. That will be a problem against a set of very good WRs from MSU. Of course there is always an issue of QB Cousins getting the ball to them. He looked OK last week in a 36-30 loss at Wisconsin but was replaced by Nichol who averaged 16 yards per attempt vs. Cousins 5.6 per throw. Regardless who plays QB, Big Blue wins.

Florida St @ Boston College FSU has looked great one week and horrible the next. They went to BYU and looked like world beaters then were drubbed by a back up QB for South Florida at home last week. BC is struggling on O against Clemson then looked better against Wake Forest last week. But WF is over rated and the athleticism of FSU will carry the day.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: Utah St.,BYU,Pitt,Louisviiie,LSU,Georgia,USC,Cal,Oklahoma,Miami,Michigan State,Michigan,Florida State,Boston College,NCAA Football,College Football

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