Nov. 12, 2016
Survive and Advance: Week 10
75% of the way through the season, this weekend was the first time teams played with their College Football Playoff rankings. There weren't that many close games, but you can never complain about another week of college football. Let's dive in:
1. Alabama: Win
Alabama went into Death Valley and finally met a defense who could slow them down. This defensive slug fest had so much energy around it, you could tell both defenses were going 110% every single play. After watching Big XII football all day (Hook 'Em), it was a shocker to see only 10 points in an entire game. Jalen Hurts continued to impress the nation with this touchdown scamper, which is all the Tide needed to win this one:
2. Clemson: Win
Deshaun Watson only needed to throw the ball 16 times to win this week by 54 points over Syracuse. Shutting out the Orange, Clemson improved to 9-0 for the second straight season, and every week they look stronger. This team looks like a lock for the playoff.
3. Michigan: Win
Michigan dominated their game against Maryland by a margin of 56 points. And yes, Harbaugh did lose his mind over a call while up 21, and proceeded to score on the next play. It seems like the only team that will have chance to beat Michigan before the the end of the regular season is Ohio State, especially with the game being played in Columbus.
4. Texas A&M: Loss
I don't want to come across as too biased here, but A&M lost this week in what is becoming typical Aggie fashion (dominate early in the season, falter later). Give them credit where it's due, they are a very good team and their loss this week came without their starting quarterback, but it was an ugly loss to a 3-5 Mississippi State team. Without Trevor Knight, the defense had to step up, and they just simply could not stop the Bulldog rushing attack. Dan Mullen may have just saved his job this weekend.
5. Washington: Win
Washington went to Berkeley and destroyed Cal, 66-27. After being snubbed for the #4 ranking and final playoff spot last week, the Huskies made their case to move up and join the three other unbeatens in the top 4.
6. Ohio State: Win
The Buckeyes made a statement with their win over Nebraska, who played without their starting QB after this shocking moment:
Disregarding the offensive struggles, the Nebraska defense had no answer for a confident JT Barrett, and Ohio State got this W by a final score of 62-3. This was about as good of a case as they could make to get into the 4 spot, and their one loss keeps looking better as Penn State works their way through their schedule.
7. Louisville: Win
Lamar Jackson, defense, and a bad Boston College team. I'm sure you can guess the outcome of this one. The final score was 52-7, and the Cardinals also made their case for the #4 spot. It will be interesting to see how the next rankings come out, especially with 6 teams separating themselves from the pack.
8. Wisconsin: Win
The Badgers got another gritty win over a solid Northwestern team on the road. This game wasn't the most intriguing of the week, with the final score being a simple 21-7, but Wisconsin proved once again that they deserve their top 10 ranking.
9. Auburn: Win
My boys over at Vanderbilt couldn't pull off the upset that I desperately wanted them to. For a second, the entire college football world thought the Commodores could win in Jordan Hare after this block:
The Vandy QB proceeded to throw an interception and Auburn ran out the clock to barely survive.
10. Nebraska: Loss
After that scary injury to Tommy Armstrong, the Cornhuskers just had could not find a way to win. Nebraska is still a good team, but has been effectively knocked out of the playoff race. We now turn to one of our most vetted analysts:
HAHA LOOKS WHO SUCKS AT PUNTING YARDS— Fake Bo Pelini (@FauxPelini)
OHIO STATE: 0
11. Florida: Loss
We called it in our last week: Arkansas would win the game. The Razorbacks came out and dominated an overrated Florida Gators team, 31-10. Arkansas outgained Florida on the ground 223-12. Bret Bielema is coaching a very dangerous team that has the potential to upset LSU next weekend.
12. Penn State: Win
Now on a five game win streak, Penn State destroyed a decent Iowa team 41-14. Quarterback Trace McSorley had a standout game, going 11/18 for 240 yards and 2 touchdowns. RB Saquon Barkley went for 167 yards on just 20 carries. If James Franklin wasn't a hot coaching commodity already, he will be getting paid this off season-- big time.
13. LSU: Loss
Saban'ed, Bama, you get the idea.
14. Oklahoma: Win
In a surprisingly tough game at Iowa State, OU managed to pull out 34-24 win with 8 defensive starters out and only one scholarship running back. Baker Mayfield had a fantastic game, throwing for four touchdowns. After a rough start, OU is surging in the rankings and is poised to win another Big 12 Title.
15. Colorado: Win
In some Pac-12 Thursday night action, Colorado was tied with UCLA going into the 4th. The Buffs put up 10 in the final quarter and gave up none to get the win and improve to 7-2. UCLA without Josh Rosen is hopeless.
16. Utah: Bye
17. Baylor: Loss
Baylor, after losing to UT, must have decided that they didn't want to try and play football anymore. They had a game at home against a rival and a chance to beat them to regain some momentum. Instead, they let the Horned Frogs walk in and utterly annihilate them by 40 points. Kyle Hicks (TCU) rushed 26 times for 192 yards (7.4 YPC) and 5 (!) touchdowns. TCU improved to 5-4 on the season, while Baylor fell to 6-2.
18. Oklahoma State: Win
In a game where Kansas State was favored at home, Oklahoma State walked into Manhattan angry and walked out with a 43-37 win. The Cowboys have only one loss in conference play, and they're setting themselves up nicely for a matchup with OU at the end of the season. However, the Cowboys postseason resumé continues to decline in value just as fast as it improves with losses to Central Michigan and Baylor.
19. Virginia Tech: Win
In what was statistically a very balanced game, Virginia Tech survived at Duke and won 24-21. The Hokies are tied for first place in the ACC Coastal, and if they manage to find their way into the ACC title game they can make some national waves if they defeat the Atlantic division winner (probably Clemson).
20. West Virginia: Win
21. North Carolina: Win
UNC had a brilliant all-round game to beat Georgia Tech, 48-20. Elijah Hood, the UNC RB, had 12 carries for 168 yards (14 YPC) and 3 touchdowns. Trubisky went 20/32 for 329 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. The defense forced 2 fumbles. Georgia Tech is a solid team, and even after this loss they have a winning record. North Carolina is in the same boat as Virginia Tech, but the two teams played earlier in the year and the Hokies have the head-to-head tiebreaker.
22. Florida State: Win
Jimbo got the W over a pesky NC State team that has given other big teams some trouble. Travis Rudolph caught the game winning TD with 3 minutes left to give FSU the win 24-20.
23. Western Michigan: Win
On Tuesday of last week, Western Michigan destroyed Ball State in some delightful MACtion, 52-20. I, along with the rest of the nation, are finally starting to learn some more about the team from Kalamazoo. The Broncos play Kent State tomorrow at 6:30 and look to continue their undefeated season.
24. Boise State: Win
These Broncos had a brilliant offensive game to beat San Jose State with the scoreboard reading 45-31. Boise State QB Brett Rypien threw for 219 yards and 3 touchdowns with no interceptions, while RB Jeremy McNichols had 28 carries for 158 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Smurf Turf magic was strong in this one.
25. Washington State: Win
Gronk may not have been proud of his team, but he would at least have chuckled at the score. Washington State beat Arizona 69-7. Watch out for this Wazzu team. They are riding a 7 game win streak, and they still have match ups with Colorado and Washington. Assuming those two teams win until they play, we could see Mike Leach and his team in the top 10 if they win out by the end of the season after starting 0-2.
Historically (as historically as two weeks in existence can be), next week's betting preview would be here, but unfortunately the playoff rankings don't come out until Tuesdays. Every Tuesday, I will post the same charts I have been posting the last few weeks as part of its own article.
Enjoy the week, y'all. Oh, and one last highlight video for you: