NCAA Football Round-Up Week 5
by Brian Miller(NCAA Football)
Posted on October 10, 2009, 7:51 AM
Same group of guys; another week of college football to evaluate; you already know the deal. Just a note that the rankings below were compiled before this weekdayís games.
Rank Team (First Place Votes)
1. Florida (2)
2. Alabama (1)
6. Boise State
7. Virginia Tech
11. Ohio State
16. South Florida
20. South Carolina
21. Georgia Tech
23. Oklahoma State
25. Penn State
Brian: All the talking heads are chattering about how being ruled ineligible will effect Dez Bryant's draft status. The short answer to that one is that it won't. The more interesting question is how this effects Oklahoma State, what's your take on how this changes things for the Cowboys?
Andrew: I don't think it really does on the field much. Frankly even with Bill Young's efforts the defense at the moment isn't good enough to pose more than an upset's threat to a Texas or Kansas or Oklahoma, and their running game (other than Kendall Hunter, Beau Johnson, Keith Toston, and Jeremy Smith all can be very effective) is strong enough and Zac Robinson is talented enough in multiple facetsthat they'll still be able to outscore most other teams. Really, the only thing this changes is if they'll beat Texas Tech, and I still think they can- don't sleep on Dameron Fooks and Justin Blackmon for a big catch or two a game.
Where this effects them is off the field- a lot of smoke has been around the OSU program in recent years over some of the treatment of players and especially the ability to academically clear major question marks like Bryant and Perrish Cox to even make it on campus. Now the NCAA, snooping or not, has found an invite to stay around Stillwater, and it will be interesting to see if anything more comes out around the program.
T.Cow: It all depends on Zac Robinsonís ability to adapt. Heís always had that go to star receiver. The first couple years, it was Adarius Bowman. Last year it was Bryant. Whoís going to step up this year. Josh Cooper is statistically the second best receiver this year. Fooks and Blackmon both have potential, but the fact is that all three are unproven. They totaled 0 catches against the toughest defense OSU has played, Georgia. I like to think that Robinson can do it, but this is Oklahoma St, a program known for underachieving year after year. Iíll go with the offense struggling mightily. Donít be surprised if the Pokes lose the next 2 against A&M and Mizzou.
Andrew: What player thus far has surprised both you the most in the BCS thus far positive or dissapointment
T.Cow: This is probably more attributed to the coordinator than the player, but Iím going with Chris Todd. He has already thrown for more yards and TDs than last year. QB rating shot up from 106 to 160 making him 8th nationally in passing efficiency. Itís even more incredible when you take into account that heís coming off of shoulder surgery causing him to miss spring practice. Heís a different player. Hell, the offense as a whole is night and day different. Gus Malzahn is an offensive genius, and it should just be a matter of time before he becomes a head coach.
Brian: As much as it pains me to say it, I've been exceedingly surprised with Tate Forcier. The kid is a true freshman stepping in and taking over the reigns of a team that was 3-9 last year and he's helped elevate Michigan's play immensely. I guess it helps basically playing in the same system in high school and then in college, but the thing that has caught my eye and that of every pundit are the words describing his intangibles. Forcier shows great grit and moxie and that's exactly what a team coming off a 3-9 season needed.
T.Cow: The spotlight shines on the SEC this week. Give your thoughts and predictions on Alabama/Ole Miss and Florida/LSU.
Brian: Alabama/Ole Miss: does someone actually think that Jevan Snead who has "phenomenal pro potential" but who has been exceedingly mediocre so far this year is going to have a transcendent performance against Alabama? Because that's the only way Ole Miss is going to beat Alabama. Bama has quite possibly the best defense in the country and are extremely well-coached, they're not going to beat themselves and I don't believe that Ole Miss has the ability to beat them. Bama 28-13.
LSU/Florida: Georgia allowed 37 points to South Carolina and 41 to Arkansas. They managed to hold LSU to only 20 and eight of those points came after that terrible excessive celebration penalty gave LSU an extremely short field to work with. What I'm driving at? That for all the individual talent they posses the LSU offense simply isn't very good. This week they face a very solid Florida defense and I'm not convinced that LSU can score enough to keep the game close even if Tim Tebow sits out the game. On the other side I trust Urban Meyer enough that even if Tim Tebow sits (and I believe he should) I think he'll be able to customize his offense to John Brantley's skill set. Florida 28-10.
Andrew: I'm going to mercifully keep this short cause my laptop is about to die, but LSU and Bama win this. Ole Miss, the Right Reverend Houston Nutt, they have strong line play and have the capability to hang with the best teams, but there's a reason they're the underdog in this and the least respected top 25 team in their conference and have been since even last year. Alabama is an efficient offense, tremendous line play, one of the best quads of running backs in the nation and with how OU has looked arguably the top 1-2 punch right now with Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson. The D is a typical Nick Saban one and that means limited mistakes and phenomenal discipline almost every week. Oxford may make the game tight but Bama is battle-tested and salts this one away methodically. Bama 34-21.
Florida/LSU- In Tiger Stadium? Check. Tebow just cleared but still shaken up? Check. May need Brantley to make his first start against a strong D? Check. I've been wrong before, I will be wrong again, but right now I see this playing out very much like the Georgia-Florida game in 2005 when Joe Tereshinski made his first start as the Dawgs superstar DJ Shockley was shaken up. The UGA O couldn't find too much of a rhythm, the D still kept it together, but ultimately when facing a very talented and physically gifted opponent you need all of what brought you to the dance to be able to do the two-step. If either team breaks 21-24 pts I'll be surprised, but if one does I think it'll be the Bayou Bengals if they can get Charles Scott worked back into the fold- he's their ace and the big back they need to wear down the Gator D and never let Tebow or Brantley work themselves into a groove. Picking LSU, let's say 17-14.
I hope you enjoyed the column. If you have any questions, concerns, or issues feel free to contact us via the Oratory Forums or e-mail Brian at bdmiller @ vt.edu, T. Cow at tangcow @ gmail.com, and Andrew at a.holik @ umiami.edu.