This week's top 5 teams
Published 3 days ago
Tennessee Tops Florida 38-33
After losing to Florida 16 of the last 17 years Volunteer fans can finally celebrate a win over the arch rival Gators once more. Although Florida made a furious rally at the end it fell just short and Rocky Top survived 38-33. Around the Nation: Clemson nipped Wake Forest in overtime 51-45. North Carolina State, Syracuse and Florida State remained unbeaten while North Carolina and Duke fell for the first time. In the Big 10 Minnesota is looking more and more like a contender after the Gophers destroyed Michigan State in East Lansing 34-7. Kansas State shocked Oklahoma 41-34 and Texas Tech nipped Texas 37-34. The Big 12 looks like a wide open race. USC barely survived the trip to Oregon State 17-14 and Appalachian State's Cinderella season came to a halt at the hands of new Sun Belt member James Madison with a 32-28 loss. Projections will be posted by Tuesday.
Oklahoma Wins Battle of Big Reds
In the 1970's the game between Oklahoma and Nebraska was the nation's premier rivalry. I remember the 1971 "Game of the Century" like it was yesterday, #1 Nebraska at #2 Oklahoma in Norman, both teams undefeated, National Championship on the line. Oh how things have changed for the Huskers. Nebraska just hasn't found their groove since they bolted the Big 12 for the Big 10. Fresh off of firing Scott Frost Nebraska hosted an Oklahoma team that finally clicked on all cylinders en route to a 49-14 thrashing of the Cornhuskers. Around the Nation: Georgia, Alabama, Clemson, Michigan and Ohio State continued to establish themselves as the nation's elite by rolling over their competition, but a few more competitors are beginning to emerge. USC, Washington, and Penn State scored big wins over stiff competition Saturday. In the ACC Wake Forest nipped Liberty 37-36 while North Carolina State was bouncing Texas Tech 27-14. Florida State moved to 3-0 by topping Louisville 35-31. In the Big 10 Minnesota and Maryland remained undefeated by beating Colorado and SMU respectively. In the Big 12 Tulane shocked Kansas State 17-10, just when I thought the Wildcats might be ready to make a run for the Big 12 Championship. We will have the answer to that Saturday as Kansas State travels to Norman to take on the red hot Sooners. Kansas pulled off an upset shocker for the second week in a row. Last week it was West Virginia, this week it was Houston. The Jayhawks stand at 3-0 after beating the Cougars 48-30. Oregon State, Washington State, Washington and USC all remained undefeated out on the West Coast and Oregon looked good by beating BYU 41-20. Arkansas rallied late to beat Missouri State 38-27, while Kentucky, Ole Miss, and Tennessee blasted their lesser opponents. I'm looking forward to next weekend's Tennessee/ Florida match in Knoxville. I think we will be able to see whether the Tennessee program has really turned a corner or not. Week 5 projections will post Wednesday this week.
Full Moon Chaos
College Football was turned upside down this weekend. Notre Dame lost at home to Marshall, Texas A&M lost at home to Appalachian State, Nebraska lost at home to Georgia Southern, and Alabama, a 21 point favorite over Texas barely escaped the trip to Austin. The whole weekend had an eerie feel. It must have been the full moon right? We have to blame it on something! Around the Nation: In the ACC Tennessee squeaked out a win at Pittsburgh 34-27, while North Carolina was escaping a second week in row with a close 35-28 win over Georgia State. In the AAC, league leader Houston fell at Texas Tech 33-30. In the Big 10 all the big boys, Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State and Penn State continued to roll, all over lesser competition. Iowa and Wisconsin were not so lucky. The Hawkeyes fell 10-7 to in state rival Iowa State and the Badgers were surprised by visiting Washington State 17-14. In the Big 12, Oklahoma was embarrassed in the first half trailing Kent State 3-0 till right before halftime, but the Sooners got untracked in the second half and finally prevailed 33-3. Baylor travelled to Provo for a meeting with BYU and lost in overtime 26-20. Could this be Brigham Young's year for a run at the playoffs? They certainly have the schedule for it. In the Pac 12 USC is certainly grabbing some headlines with their prolific offense, blowing away Stanford 41-28, and don't look now but watch out for the Beavers, Oregon State went on the road and topped Fresno State 35-32. Down in the SEC Arkansas looks mighty good. The Razorbacks moved to 2-0 with a sharp 44-30 win over South Carolina. The Hogs moved up to #3 in this week's Billingsley Report, the highest since the Frank Broyles era in the 1970's. Mark Stoops became Kentucky's winningest coach with a win in the swamp over Florida 26-16. That was the most physical game I've ever seen the Wildcats play. Stay tuned for week 4 projections, scheduled to be posted Tuesday.
Ohio State Tops Notre Dame 21-10
The first half belonged to Notre Dame but the Buckeyes dominated the second half and came away with a convincing 21-10 win in the Horseshoe. Although the Billingsley Report will not be posted till Tuesday, after Monday night's Clemson/Georgia Tech game, Ohio State will most certainly leap near the top of the rankings. Around the nation: Things started out with a bang Thursday night as the country was treated to the renewal of the Backyard Brawl and a Brawl it certainly turned out to be as Pittsburgh stormed back late in the 4th quarter to win 38-31. Saturday North Carolina nipped Appalachian State 63-61 in one of the more entertaining games I have seen in recent years while in a stark contrast Iowa held off South Dakota State 7-3 by scoring a field goal and two safeties. Houston held off Texas-San Antonio 37-35 in a game that saw the Roadrunners go the length of the field in 23 seconds and tie the game to send it into overtime. Penn State rallied late and scored with seconds left to beat Purdue 35-31. The Big 12 came thru the weekend smelling like a rose with a 9-1 record. Baylor, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State will likely all remain in the Top 10. The Lincoln Riley era at USC started out with a roar as the Trojans obliterated hapless Rice 66-14. Georgia embarrassed visiting Oregon 49-3, but I suspect the Bulldogs will be embarrassing a lot of teams this fall. Alabama looked flawless against Utah State 55-0 and Arkansas served notice to fellow SEC members that last year's winning record was no fluke. The Razorbacks took down Cincinnati 31-24. LSU/Florida State is on tap tonight with Clemson/ Georgia Tech wrapping up the long Labor Day football festivities Monday Night. Week 3 Projections should be posted by Wednesday.
Northwestern Surprises Nebraska 31-28 In Dublin, Ireland
The Emerald Isle turned out to be quite lucky for Northwestern as the Wildcats dominated the 4th quarter and squeaked out a 31-28 win over the favored Nebraska Cornhuskers. The Huskers had the momentum and the lead until a failed onsides kick attempt went awry. Northwestern seized the opportunity and never looked back. The hot seat underneath Scott Frost just went from hot to boiling. Around the Nation: North Carolina and Florida State got their season untracked in proper fashion by crushing Florida A&M 56-14 and Duquesne 47-7 respectively while over in the Big 10 Illinois breezed by Wyoming 38-6. Vanderbilt traveled to the big island and obliterated Hawaii 63-10. The 2022 season kicks off in full force Thursday Stay tuned.
2022 Season Set To Open August 27
Although the first week of the season starts with a very abbreviated schedule, the opening weekend on August 27 is upon us. Highlighted by Nebraska and Northwestern squaring off in Dublin Ireland, the opening weekend shows a scant schedule of less than 15 games with only 7 between FBS versus FBS opponents. Labor Day weekend, week two on the schedule is the traditional opening weekend and offers a King's feast of highly anticipated games. Thursday September 1 kicks off the party with the renewal of an old rivalry between West Virginia hosting Pittsburgh. The series between these two rivals dates to 1895 with the Panthers holding a 61-40-3 lead. They have not met since the 2011 season. The fireworks kick off full force on Saturday September 3 as Cincinnati looks to extend their national prominence by travelling to SEC country to face Arkansas. I can hear the HOG CALL already reverberating through the Ozarks. Oregon and Georgia face off in Atlanta while Utah, the pre-season PAC 12 favorite, visits the Swamp to tackle Florida. In the prime time night game the most highly anticipated match finds Notre Dame travelling to the Horseshoe to battle Ohio State. These two college football king pins have only met 6 times, with the last two being in Bowl Games. The Fighting Irish won the first two way back in 1935 and 1936, with the Buckeyes taking the last 4. With both teams being highly ranked, Notre Dame #9 and Ohio State #8, the winner is likely to jump at or near the top of week 2's Billingsley Report due out the Tuesday after Labor Day. The Sunday night game finds Florida State at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge to face new LSU head coach Brian Kelly. The Monday night Labor Day game features Clemson at Georgia Tech. Needless to say the 2022 season should be an interesting one, full of upsets and surprises. Will someone be able to knock the SEC off their perennial perch? Perhaps Ohio State, Notre Dame, Clemson, Utah, or maybe even a rebuilt Oklahoma or upstart Texas? Hmmm…. maybe the hyped up USC? Time will tell. Let the games begin!