College Football turned in another memorable weekend. It was packed with memorable performances, unexpected events, and defining moments for teams, players, and coaches. Here are this week's musings.
1. Here we go again. Last year, the Michigan Wolverines started hot (4-0) and we all thought they were back. They only won one game the rest of the year (63-6 against Delaware State). That has made me hesitant to get excited about Michigan this year. The shootout with UMass on Saturday didn't help. Will Michigan keep winning once Big Ten play starts?
2. Houston, we have a problem. A week after Houston appeared to be in excellent shape with a ground game to go with their potent passing attack, the Cougars lost their first and second string quarterbacks. Case Keenum was the life blood of that team. Now, a season full of so much promise, is most likely shattered.
3. The ACC favorite is who? The North Carolina State Wolfpack looks to be the team to beat in the ACC. They are the only 3-0 team, and behind the arm of Russell Wilson they are legit. Tom O'Brien had struggled so far at NCState, but he looks to have assembled a solid team he can win with.
4. Escaped by their whiskers. The Wisconsin Badgers survived a scare Saturday by Arizona State. A blocked extra point attempt with 4:09 to play made the difference. Wisconsin has one more game to figure things out before Big Ten play starts. They might be 3-0 at this point, but none of their wins have been dominant.
5. Can we shorten the game to 3 quarters? This question was asked by FIU, and everyone playing Oregon. The Florida International Golden Panthers had a 20-6 lead going into the fourth quarter, only to see Texas A&M score 21 fourth quarter points to win 27-20. Oregon is humiliating everyone, do we really need to rub it in and play the final 15 minutes?
6. 'Bamas Best Back. Mark Ingram made it clear that he is, not only, the reigning Heisman Trophy winner. He is the best Alabama Crimson Tide running back. Back from injury, Ingram took his first carry of the season 48 yards. He had over 100 yards in the first quarter. He averaged 16.8 yards per carry, and scored two touchdowns. Trent Richardson is a very good player, but let's refrain from saying he is better than Ingram.
7. This is why you came back? Many experts felt Jake Locker would have pushed Sam Bradford for the number one pick in last April's NFL draft. Locker decided to stay for his senior year. I don't think he came back for games like the one on Saturday: 4-20 passing for 71 yards and 2 interceptions. Here's an idea, let's go back nine months and Locker can declare for the NFL draft and Jimmy Clausen can stay for his senior year.
8. The Pac-10 packed a punch. Although Washington didn't look so hot, several Pac-10 teams did. Arizona came up with the biggest upset of the year by knocking off Iowa, 34-27. Stanford continued to roll with a 68-24 trashing of Wake Forest. UCLA rebounded with a 31-13 win over upstart Houston. While it was just Portland State, Oregon still exceeded expectations (69 points in 45 minutes). Even Arizona State represented well in a loss at Wisconsin. The losses by Washington and Cal hurt the conference, but everyone else came through.
9. You conned me. UConn had us all fooled. The Huskies are not measuring up to contender status in the Big East. A 20 point loss to Michigan in the opener (UMass only lost by 5). A 14 point loss to Temple this week. Temple might win the MAC, but if you expect to contend in a BCS AQ conference, you put away MAC schools easy.
10. The most overrated play. Michigan State faked a field goal in overtime to beat Notre Dame. It was a risky call, and it looked cool from the camera angle on television, but don't buy into the hype that this one play was the gutsiest play of the college football season. The Michigan State head coach even explained that they didn't have much confidence in their kicker. My props to Michigan State for getting the win over one of their rivals and for executing the play well, but let's not blow this out of proportion.
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