Ten Things - Week Six
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Ten Things from the college football weekend gone by...
1. Will Clowney play? The Head Ball Coach had a disgusted look on his face when reporters asked him the obvious question following Saturday's home win over Kentucky - a win where defensive lineman Jadaveon Clowney sat out with bruised ribs. Steve Spurrier said, "If he is hurt, he won't play. If he isn't hurt, he will play." That is the correct answer to give by the head coach of the Gamecocks, but he was obviously not happy to say it. With a potential #1 draft choice on the line for Clowney, protecting his body is important. But if Clowney shows he is either too hurt to play or too unwilling to play through some minor pain, that cannot help his draft status a whole lot. Will he play Saturday at Arkansas? We will soon see.
2. Uniforms of Notre Dame and Washington. I love tradition as much as anyone, and that is why I have always loved the uniforms of both Notre Dame and Washington. But this past Saturday, they broke from the norm and it resulted in disaster in my eyes. Notre Dame decided to use the same flashy gold of their helmets on the numbers of the jersey. It looked tacky and way overdone and as if they were trying too hard to show just how gold they can be. Washington, meanwhile, broke away from their usually sharp helmets to show a shiny gold as if they were trying to be the Irish....Sheesh, folks! Unless you are Oregon, just wear your normal uniforms!
3. 70-point club. In fitting fashion, Baylor is the only squad to make the 70-point club for week six. The Bears have been an offensive juggernaut in 2013, scoring 70 points three times and scoring 69 points in their only miss. At 4-0, Baylor is climbing up the polls fast and have reached the #17 mark. Several teams scored in the 60's, including Florida State who blanked Maryland 63-0.
4. Shutout club. As previously mentioned, Florida State was the most impressive team to join the shutout club in week six....and the only team! The Seminoles beat the everlasting hell out of Maryland, 63-0. FSU jumped up the polls to #6 this week after the impressive home domination.
5. Tennessee improving? Everyone knows that Tennessee - under first year Head Coach Butch Jones - is rebuilding. The question is whether or not UT is making progress or not. After a long road trip out to Eugene, OR saw the Ducks hammer Tennessee, the Vols have shown they are getting better. They lost a competitive game to Florida in the Swamp, and then nearly knocked off #6 Georgia in Neyland Stadium. Jones is a good coach, and my guess is that by the end of the 2014 season, UT will be back in the national talks.
6. Crazy man. Syracuse Head Coach Scott Shafer was quite the animated character in his team's loss to Clemson this past Saturday. Besides riding the refs on nearly every play, Shafer went nuts - yelling expletives - at Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney when Swinney tried to score a TD, up 35-7, just before halftime. After the game, Swinney said, "...we thought a touchdown was a better deal right there (than a field goal)....What was I supposed to do? Take a knee?" Shafer admitted he got a bit out of control, and apologized to Swinney, saying he should control his emotions better.
7. Nation's longest winning streak. Ohio State went on the road and defeated Northwestern, 40-30, this past Saturday to keep Head Coach Urban Meyer undefeated on the OSU sideline. The Buckeyes continue to have the nation's longest unbeaten streak which is now at 18 games. The Buckeyes have six remaining regular season games, and while all seem winnable, a trip to Michigan to close the regular season looks to be the best chance for the streak to be snapped.
8. Heisman Watch. I cannot remember a season where so many names could be involved in the Heisman Trophy race...and they all seem to be quarterbacks (shocker)! Names such as Marcus Mariota, Teddy Bridgewater, Johnny Manziel, Tajh Boyd, AJ McCarron, Aaron Murray and Bryce Petty are near the top of the list. There is little doubt I am leaving a great player out here.....One name not in the discussion any longer is Jadavenon Clowney. A missed game and several games with low tackles have seen Clowney's name fade from the talks.
9. Guns Up! When Texas Tech hired one of their own last year in Cliff Kingsbury, I believed it to be a very strong hire. Five games into his head coaching career, it seems to have, in fact, turned out to be a very good decision. Kingsbury - who broke school records at Texas Tech as a player - has his Red Raiders undefeated and back in the national Polls (#23 AP). More importantly, the enthusiasm for TTU football is off the charts right now, which will help recruiting and keep the Red Raiders playing good ball. But don't put him in the school's coaching H.O.F. just yet, Texas Tech's schedule is tougher in the second half of the season, with Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Baylor and Texas on the slate still.
10. Three to see
* #12 Oklahoma vs Texas - This game in Dallas is always a thriller. I cannot wait to see if OU is for real, or if Texas' Mack Brown can continue to fight off his pitch-fork toting mob of mad fans.
* #17 Florida at #10 LSU - The Tigers and Gators are two of the SEC's premier programs on a year-to-year basis. Both need a big win in this game to keep themselves in the national picture. This will be a war!
* #2 Oregon at #16 Washington - The Ducks are favored here, but look out for the Huskies. They went on the road to Stanford a week ago and lost by just a FG. Oregon will need to play a disciplined game in a hostile environment.
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