It seems like every week in college football, a big name team goes down and this week, not only did several big name teams go down, but a big name went down with a head injury. I am speaking of course of Tim Tebow being carted off the field in Lexington and being kept overnight for observation. As of now, it looks like he is going to be fine, but what a huge hit his injury would have been for college football. Imagine hockey losing Gretzky, soccer losing Messi or Ronaldo, football losing Peyton Manning and his commercials. If college football lost its spokesman and most beloved and decorated player in a long time, it would be unbelievably bad. As I said, it looks like he will be fine, but just thinking about how much college football needs him is remarkable and brings a whole new importance to #15.
In other news, Miami got crushed in Blacksburg, but played them close compared to #6 Cal in Eugene. Oregon ran the Golden Bears out of the building at the Autzen Zoo and showed that they weren’t just another Pac-10 team that looked stupid on TV in Boise. Not only does the win for Oregon make at least some of the fans forget about LeGarrette Blount’s stupidity, but it makes them Pac-10, and thus BCS, contenders. Boise has to love it too, seeing how they physically beat down a team like Oregon who now looks much better. Cal, on the other hand, confirmed what many others though: They are good, but not THAT good, and they proved it on Saturday. They were simply overmatched on the road in conference and that is normal for most teams, but the #6 team in the nation does not get humiliated if they are really as good as a #6 team.
Ole Miss was in the same boat. They were a highly ranked, highly doubted team that may not have been ready for the spotlight. They went down to South Carolina and looked like every other team. They were vulnerable on the road in conference and did not bring their A game. Every team does that sometimes, but it is the really good teams that find a way to win even when they have a bad day.
In an entirely different category, however, are teams like Penn State. They got the Hawkeyes at home and managed to lose in unimpressive fashion. The number one rule about conference games is that you have to win your home games in order to contend. If you win your home games and you take one beating on the road, you are in MUCH better shape than if you drop a home game, than have to win out on the road. Iowa is now ranked #13, which is slightly insane, but such are the ways of college football rankings sometimes.
Then there are the teams going up against a nearly top ten conference foe on the road, but the hype machine is going so loud that everyone forgets, including me. Miami showed up in Blacksburg and laid an egg as the Hokies dominated the Canes, and got their home win to keep their ACC title hopes bright. I think that maybe all the noise from the hype machine got into Miami’s heads because they looked lifeless out there. Give tons of credit to VT for sticking it to their hyped rivals, but Miami was lifeless out there. Road games really do mean a lot in college and Miami learned that one the hard way. I was foolish enough to believe that Miami (The U) would not get caught up in its success and at least put in a good effort in Blacksburg against a struggling Hokies team. Of COURSE they got caught up in themselves, it’s the U! I thought they had changed, but clearly it is still The U.
Notre Dame was pitiful to only beat Purdue by 3. I know I promised I wouldn’t talk about them, but I thought Notre Dame haters would appreciate seeing the words “Notre Dame” and “pitiful” together.
LSU narrowly avoided a defeat on the road in conference at Mississippi State. This is important for any contender to do because no team brings its A game every week in college football and it is all about surviving when you don’t. Does this make LSU a title contender to have simply won a game they should have won on the road? By itself, no, but it is important for any team that wants to contend to be able to do that. Jordan Jefferson impressed, even though much of the impressing came with wide receivers that were open so long they should have been wearing 7/11 signs. LSU is always a contender in the SEC and it looks like this year will be no different.
I missed my VT-Miami pick on the week, but was dead on with the TCU over Clemson pick and oh so close on the Houston to narrowly cover their -1.5 spread as they won by one at home against Texas Tech. Alas, they did not cover, but I still looked decent on the pick. Ok, time for the Clown of the Week. Get pumped!
CLOWN OF THE WEEK: I am tempted to go with Notre Dame with no other outrageous clowns going on, but I will go instead with the Washington Redskins for losing to the hapless and hopeless Detroit Lions. Hats off to the Lions, but if you work for the Washington Redskins, you might want to consider looking for a new job.