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Once again yesterday, the college football world brought us lots of excitement. It also brought us a few things that left us scratching our heads! Here are some thoughts on yesterday's action....
* Andrew Luck stiff arm. There are a few teams in America that strike fear into me, but Stanford is one of them. If Michigan doesn't offer alum Jim Harbaugh a zillion dollars to come home and coach them, I have serious doubts about UM. Harbaugh has Stanford at 10-1, with their only loss coming to Oregon (away) six weeks ago. He is getting his success through the play of his Heisman candidate quarterback, Andrew Luck. In 2001, Luck has thrown for 2,746 yards (24 tds) and rushed for 445 more (3 more scores). But it isn't just his numbers that are impressive. He is a beast. Yesterday he laid a stiff arm/elbow to a Cal defender that left the cornerback on the ground. Luck picked up 58 yards on that run. Stanford is a true national title caliber team, and I would not want to coach or play aginst them right now.
* Tennessee can still have a decent year. Derek Dooley will need a few days to relax following this his first season as a SEC head coach. He has certainly learned how difficult things really are. But despite the up and down season UT has had, the Vols beat Vanderbilt yesterday and now play a home game next week against Kentucky to become bowl-eligible. I have never been much of a Tennessee fan, but I like what Dooloey is trying to do, and hope he can make a bowl after a trying first season.
* Football in baseball stadiums. Well, if you had a seat in the infield part of Wrigley Field, you saw a lot of action yesterday. If you sat in the right-field bleachers, however, you needed your binoculars. Due to the fact that people from the Big Ten apparently cannot measure (or didn't feel the need to), the back end line of one end zone was deemed too close to the famed ivy-covered brick wall to be safe, and thus both teams ran their offenses towards the infield. The folks in the outfield did get some action, though, as Northwestern ran an interception back for a score in the first half. I actually thought this game was a dumb idea at first, but seeing the jam-packed fans in Wrigley kind of changed my mind when I saw the highlights....Meanwhile, in New York, football took over the new Yankee Stadium as Notre Dame and Army got after it. Again, a huge crowd showed up, and it looked like a great time. The fans sitting in the first rows at midfield had horrible seats, though, as the field was probably 40 yards away and they were sitting almost field level. Unlike at Wrigley, this game ran from home-plate towards center field, leaving plenty of room for the field.
* ACC Atlantic down to two. With NC State beating North Carolina, and Florda State winning at Maryland, the ACC Atlantic is down to just the Wolfpack and Seminoles. FSU has played out its conference slate and finished at 6-2. NCSU is at 5-2 and has one game left - at Maryland in six days. Win that game and the Pack will go to the ACCCG for the first time (they own tiebreak over FSU). Lose, and Florida State goes. Simple as that.
* Nebraska lets me down. I tossed and tured over this game all week last week, mainly because I was worried that Nebraska couldn't score. I ended up taking the Huskers, and they rewarded me with six points. There were some questionable calls in this game by the zebras, but the fact is that you cannot depend on six point to win you a football game - especially one on the road. Nebraska has a great defense, but with an offense that is so capable of having production like this, the Huskers are just another team in the top 25. Once Bo Pelini gets some skill players, Nebraska will be back in the natinal scene.
* Iowa heartbreak. For the fourth time this season, Iowa has lost a heartbreaker in the final few minutes of the game. Yes, Arizona, Wisconsin, Northwestern and now Ohio State all beat Iowa with touchdowns in the final minutes. Iowa is 15 points away from being unbeaten and in the top five. But with their fourth loss, they will probably not be ranked this week. I like the Hawkeyes, and know they are good. But until they can get over this hump and close out games, they are just another top 25-ish type team.
* Wisconsin might be the best team in America. The Badgers are 10-1, scored 83 a week ago, and just went into The Big House and slapped an ugly defeat on Michigan. Folks, the need for a playoff has never been greater, and team such as this current 2010 Badgerteam are exactly the reason why. Wisconsin plays mean, hard-nosed football, and it apperas now they also know how to score in mass. This team would beat 97% of the teams out there, and it urks me to the bone that they cannot play for a national title.
* Gamecocks score 56 in first half. For whatever reason, Steve Spurrier decided to go after style points in a win against Troy. South Carolina is out of the national title race, but Spurrier's team played this game as if it were Boise or TCU trying to get as many points on the board as possible. I thought at the half that this would end up being one of those 80 point+ games that people remember for years. But the dogs were called off, and the Gamecocks won 69-24.
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