Sep 7

The Things We Learned - Week 1

Posted By:Wes Mewbourne, Birmingham, AL  Tags:

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Photo: by US Presswire

This weekend showed us all quite a bit of what to expect this year.  It also raises a few new questions.  The road to the national title, the Heisman, and even some conference championships took an extra turn.  Here are the five most important things to take away…
1.     Half of top 10 doesn’t appreciate their lofty rankings.  It’s no surprise that teams schedule cupcakes to start the year off.  When you schedule someone who may give you a challenge, they may beat you (see Oklahoma and Virginia Tech).  Top 10 programs all over the country struggled to overcome inferior teams.  USC fell behind 3-0 to San Jose St.  Ohio St. survived a scare against Navy.  Even  Alabama (who out-gained VT by almost 350 yards) made enough bone headed plays to keep the Hokies in it longer than they should have.  If we tiptoe past the Top 10, we also see that LSU and Georgia didn’t seem to care about playing football.  At least LSU changed their mind.

2.     It’s a bad time to be a high profile starting quarterback.  Sure Tebow and McCoy had no problems, but several big – and new – names didn’t have such a smooth ride.  Matt Barkley, the first freshman to ever start at qb for USC, struggled early as he got his feet wet.  Jevan Snead had a tough time getting things together against Memphis.  Greg McElroy had to run a good bit against a swarming Va Tech D.  And we all know how things turned out for Sam Bradford.

3.     The National Champion will be the team who doesn’t beat themselves.  I know it was week one, but wow.  The number of dumb turnovers, dumb penalties, and generally dumb miscues were horrendous.  Every time I turned around, someone was doing something they shouldn’t.  This will have to change in order for a team or two to rise to the top.

4.     On a more positive note, the SEC and Big Twelve  Conference continue to prove their dominance.  As Skull&Bones pointed out, both conferences finished the weekend 10-1.  The Big Twelve Conference holds the edge right now, as OSU topped Georgia in the only meeting between the two.  Unfortunately, Oklahoma may lose some credibility if they can’t bounce back from Heisman Trophy winner Sam Bradford’s injury.

5.     And then there were two.  With Bradford presumably (and, at least for the moment) out of the Heisman race, that leaves Tebow and McCoy with a head to head match-up for the trophy.  Both teams look to play yet another warm-up game this next week, with revenge on their minds on Sep 19th.  That’s when Texas looks to avenge last season’s last second loss to the Red Raiders of Texas Tech, and Florida looks to settle the score with Tennessee and their new coach.  Expect the best from both programs, and both quarterbacks to have big games.

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