Ohio State is struggling badly on offense. The problem is 65% the O line or absence of one and 35% QB Pryor. The O line has been a problem for the last 5 years. The lack of pass protection has been a major contributor to Pryor regressing this season. He loses his mechanics because he is running for his life even against a 1-5 Purdue team. The lack of run blocking has put much more pressure on the passing game. The 5 man blocking sled is pushed up against the wall of the OSU practice facility. It’s way past time that it gets used a lot. If the Bucks could generate any kind of running game, the pass rush would be slowed and Pryor would become more accurate.
Alabama looked a lot more impressive than Florida this weekend. Florida struggled with a hot but unranked Arkansas team and most of their problems were self inflicted. Bama rolled over 22 South Carolina 20-6 but the game was not that close. Alabama is good but I wonder if they can get over the hurdle of beating Florida in the SEC Championship game.
20 Oklahoma v 3 Texas was everything we hoped it would be. But as I said before the draft this year QB Bradford made a mistake by not going pro. Unfortunately he was hurt again in the game. Every injury costs him millions of dollars in guaranteed money because the NFL will be less and less comfortable with his injury status. The two injuries that the scouts worry about the most are concussions and injuries to the passing arm/shoulder/elbow of a QB. A perfect example of this is Pennington. His 3rd shoulder injury may well end his career. Each operation has reduced his already below average arm strength. The shoulder capsule injury is difficult to judge and any doubt will hurt Bradford’s draft status.
Texas looks OK on D as does Oklahoma. The game was a defensive struggle all day. Texas QB McCoy averaged only 3.3 yards per throw with 21-39 for just 127 yards. In addition the running game averaged 3.6 per attempt. That is not enough O to win against either of the SEC teams. The Sooners hung in the game very well but did not have enough O with QB Jones at the helm to win.
4 Virginia Tech let 22 Georgia Tech jump out to a 14-3 lead. When they can continue to run the ball and pass when they want to, the Jackets are very hard to stop. VTk fell to the Jackets and are out of the Championship game race with 2 losses.
5 Boise St. has not impressed me much. They have one really nice win over Oregon at home. That is all. They do not have any other big game on the schedule. Frankly even if they do win out, I would take a 1 loss SEC or Big 12 team over an undefeated Boise club.
6 USC seems to play down to the level of their competition. They let the 25 Notre Dame hang around way too long and almost let them come back to win. Early in the 4th USC was up 34-14 but let ND score twice and threaten a 3rd time. That did not impress me. The USC D is over rated and the win over Ohio State is looking less and less impressive. Both QBs looked OK but the difference was the USC running game. But the USC D let ND QB Clausen march the ball into the red zone at the end of the game.
I do like 8 Cincinnati, 9 Miami (FL) and 11 Iowa. All three look good and have chances to improve their position with big game coming up. Iowa really needed Ohio State to win until they play to get the maximum advantage from a schedule against the weak Big 10.
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 .