If you had believed College GameDay, there was nothing else on that day. Oh, maybe a couple coaching changes. That’s it. Nothing else. That 5-hour GameDay was absurdly long. They could have gone with 4 and it would have been plenty. Worst part is, The Game was awesome. So the hype kind of justified it. So expect longer GameDays in the future for bigger games. Speaking of The Game, did I mention it was amazing? Double overtime. Two missed field goals in regulation. Controversy over a spot in double overtime. Curtis Samuel running about 50 yards to gain a little over ten to be just short that set up the fourth down that had that controversial spot. Crazy. And so good. It’s why we watch college football: for games like these. I do think it would have been better as the 8:00 ABC game but I understand tradition has it at Noon on ABC. Remember, realignment and money has robbed the game of a lot of traditions so let’s not quibble over this one. It did make it tough to get through the rest of the day thought I will say that. Energy was an issue later on.
Warning: this post will be long. Viewer discretion strongly advised.
The week started on Tuesday with some MACtion. Ohio clinched the MAC East with their win over Akron. Then Miami-OH completed the most incredible in-season turnaround ever. They had started the season 0-6. With their win Tuesday night over Ball State they finished 6-6 and became bowl eligible. Very impressive.
LSU beat Texas A&M on American Thanksgiving night and that was the secondary story. Ed Orgeron was the main story all night. Whether LSU was going to take the interim tag off or hire someone else. The intrigue would last into Saturday morning. We will get to that in a bit.
NC State ruined North Carolina’s chances of going to the ACC Championship and made the Commonwealth Cup the next day meaningless with their win over the Heels. Other than a skirmish in the middle of the game, nothing much of note here. The Wolfpack became bowl eligible much to the chagrin of the 5-7 crew.
Memphis with the mild upset of Houston. Again nothing really of note except the constant reminder that Tom Herman was probably coaching his last game on the Cougar sideline.
Missouri beat Arkansas in front of, well, a lot less than a sell-out. I kind of wonder if Mizzou fans long for the days of the Big Eight. Not the Big XII, the Big Eight.
Northern Illinois beat Kent State to go to 5-7 and start the slew of conversations about which teams had better APRs and how many spots would be available after all eligible teams were selected. I love college football, I really do. But this APR nonsense is stupid. A few less bowl games, that’s all I ask.
The Apple Cup was so incredibly non-competitive. Did Mike Leach realize it was a big game? Washington clinched their spot in the Pac-12 Championship and come very close to clinching one of the coveted four College Football Playoff spots.
Western Michigan continued their dream season, beating Toledo and clinching the MAC West title. They go into the MAC Championship undefeated and as big favourites to get the Group of Five spot in the New Year’s Six. However, we do know that the MAC Title game has been rife with upsets since it began so don’t rule anything out.
Texas played awful, again. Poor Charlie Strong.
Iowa laid a beating on Nebraska, guaranteeing Wisconsin the Big Ten West crown. At least Wisconsin’s game the next day still had meaning since Wisky is still in the hunt for a CFP spot.
Texas Tech beat Baylor and the Bears’ season will end in a whimper. Many were wishing that they didn’t become bowl eligible at all. Many should be thankful The Committee didn’t have to make any sort of decision on them. Also, Patrick Mahomes plays video game football. He should play on Sundays. Maybe the Browns need a…you know what, don’t bother.
Boise State loses inexplicably to Air Force. This means another game on Saturday, this one the Wyoming-New Mexico affair, means nothing now. Black Friday college football not helping Saturday college football any.
All Arizona State needed was a win to go bowling again. The Fighting RichRods beat them pretty handily and won the Territorial Cup. Also, one Sun Devil fan wasn’t impressed with me over Twitter. That surprises me so much since Twitter is such a bastion of friendliness and great debate that never goes over the line or gets personal. Notice the italics.
Southern Miss also pulled an upset, beating Louisiana Tech meaning they would become bowl eligible. The APR spots were dwindling FAST.
Oh and Tubs is as good as done in Cincinnati. Can’t see the Bearcats retaining Tuberville after their loss to Tulsa who came back from quite a ways down to force overtime and then win.
Saturday REALLY Early
Five hour GameDay and The Game. Oh and some coaching carousel fun. Luckily for our sanity, Charlie Strong was fired early on by Texas (no surprise). It sounds like Tom Herman was demanding around $6 million a season (or more like his agents were demanding this). LSU balked and refused to wait for any counter-offer. So they went ahead and removed the interim tag from Ed Orgeron and made him the permanent head coach. Then Texas hired Tom Herman to the surprise of no one either.
The Game was good. I mentioned it above. Forgot to mention Jim Harbaugh’s rant on the officiating after the game. Epic. And will cost him some money. However, there were other games on Saturday. No really!
Rutgers lost. Again. Which made Maryland bowl eligible. The APR schools are decreasing more and more. Actually made me a smile a bit.
How about those Kentucky Wildcats? What a game against Louisville and they pull it out with a last-minute FG to upset the Cardinals. Mark Stoops has done a great job building the program in Lexington. Also, this pretty much makes it so the Fighting Petrinos will not be in a New Year’s Six bowl. Also, I don’t think Lamar Jackson is a shoo-in anymore for the Heisman. Three straight weeks of less-than-Heisman performance and some good performances by other great players has made this a race again.
Another meaningless game but considering it’s a rivalry game, it does feel somewhat important. I’m talking about Clean, Old Fashioned Hate. Georgia and Georgia Tech. And the Ramblin’ Wreck spoiled yet another COFH game by beating Georgia Between the Hedges again. Bulldog fans already wondering if Kirby Smart is the right guy for the job.
Pittsburgh beat Syracuse 76-61…in football. It shattered the previous mark for points in a regulation game by almost 20. Every time I turned back to the game, someone else had scored. It was the only reason I was watching this game. Such a defense-optional game to the extreme.
Indiana and Northwestern did what they had to do: win to become bowl eligible in their rivalry games. To be honest, I am sure very few people watched these two games.
What the hell is up with Notre Dame? The program is in shambles. Brian Kelly is now actually looking for other coaching possibilities despite the fact the AD hasn’t fired him or doesn’t seem to want to. One of Kelly’s captains had two egregious personal fouls that were missed and should have necessitated him being kicked out of the game. A complete mess. Worst part is, the Irish have the talent to have at least gone bowling. They need to start over and it starts with shitcanning Kelly soon. Oh and USC is good. Adoree Jackson is REALLY good.
The Iron Bowl was more of a Tin Foil Bowl. Nothing much to see. Bama won. Auburn was close for almost three quarters despite the fact they played terrible. It is obvious to anyone that after the Tide, there is no team in that conference that is even close to elite. They will have the worst New Year’s Six representative (unless Florida upsets Alabama in the SEC Championship…which I highly doubt).
In Canadian university football, Laval won the Vanier Cup again. In front of what looked like less than 10,000 fans. Not a good look for the newly rechristened U Sports. We can put part of the blame on Rogers for their piss-poor coverage up until the week of the game. Not surprising at all.
Ole Miss had a shot to go bowling but came up with egg on their face (see what I did there). They lost the Egg Bowl to Mississippi State. And by lost, I mean got destroyed. The Bulldogs now become a potential APR bowl team.
Navy put a whole whack of points up on SMU. Along with the Middies, Pitt (as I mentioned above), and Middle Tennessee all put up 70+ points on the day. Crazy.
Penn State clinched the Big Ten East by beating Michigan State easily. They are probably the worst of the three top Big Ten East teams (PSU, tOSU, Michigan) but thanks to their improbable upset of Ohio State earlier in the year, they get a chance to win the Big Ten title and put a MASSIVE monkey wrench in the College Football Playoff rankings.
Boston College is bowl eligible after beating Wake Forest. Both teams aren’t that great but were helped with soft schedules. I will say Dave Clawson has done a good job in Winston-Salem whereas Steve Addazio, not so much. I think it’s time to let him go and start fresh, especially with a lot of good head coaching candidates out there.
Clemson laid a beating on South Carolina to win the battle of the Palmetto state. Clemson is one win away from the CFP. WILL MUSCHAMP! has done a great job in Columbia with that many freshmen and sophomores. The Gamecocks will be a LOT better next season.
Your winner….and NEW Champion of Life….the Vanderbilt Commodores! Derek Mason’s squad pulls off the upset of Tennessee and is going bowling the right way (not through the back door as many said they would). I think Butch Jones is another guy who should be fired. Whether he is or not, I don’t know. Many crowned the Vols this season’s SEC East champs back in the pre-season. I didn’t fall for it. Then again I picked Georgia. Yeah.
UCLA lost to fall to 4-8. How is Jim Mora getting no heat? This has to be one of the most disappointing seasons in college football this season.
Colorado beat Utah to clinch the Pac-12 South, meaning USC would not have a chance to beat Washington twice this season. The Buffs could also put a huge wrench in the CFP if they beat Washington on Friday.
Western Kentucky destroyed Marshall and is a very underrated Group of Five team…again. Marshall has fallen from grace fast. Doc Holliday should have pushed for another job last season when he was a hot commodity. Too late now.
It took Florida State a while but they were able to pull away and beat Florida. If they could have erased either the loss to Louisville or the loss to Clemson they would have been almost a shoo-in for a NY6 bowl. Not anymore.
Saturday Late Night
I don’t know what Wyoming and San Diego State were thinking. They still had an outside shot at the Group of Five New Year’s Six spot if they both won tonight. But they both looked awful. Worse than awful. New Mexico ran all over the Cowboys and Colorado State put 63 on the board against the Aztecs. This means the Mountain West is officially out of the G-5 race. Boise State is now kicking themselves after losing to Air Force the previous day.
Alright after a mostly great day of college football, it is clear Alabama will go to the College Football Playoff. Even if they somehow lose to Florida in the SEC Championship, they will still hold a spot. Clemson and Washington, I believe will also go with wins in their respective conference championships. It’s that number four spot. I will be doing a post later this week on what is really my final bowl projections before Conference Championship week. I honestly believe that Ohio State will end up being #4, no matter if Wisconsin or Penn State wins the Big Ten Championship. Is it right? That is up for debate. I think there will be a lot of debate this season on who the #4 team should be. This all basically goes to shit if Clemson and Washington lose. So having that happen would be a lot of fun. It means The Committee would earn their money…which is none.
Tomorrow I will have my NFL recap and then the aforementioned rankings/bowl projections post on Wednesday. Hope you all had a great weekend.