College Football is entering Week 12. Yes, the season has already spanned 3 months. Yes this season has had its fair share of drama. Just ask Auburn, Gene Chizik, and Cam Newton. But this year has also had its fair share of stellar play.
See Auburn, Oregon, TCU, and Boise State. All of these teams look to be contenders to play in the National Championship game out in Arizona come January 10th. Here is a look at the marquee matchups:
Ohio State at Iowa: Ohio State has won 5 straight Big Ten Titles. Lose this game, and that reign ends. Win this game. And they put themselves in position to at least share the title with a win over rival Michigan in the regular season finale. This Ohio State team has had almost unreasonable expectations placed on it since the preseason. The majority of the country, including myself, were shocked when they went down in Camp Randall on October 16th. Due to Michigan State going down to Iowa, the Buckeyes regained new life. Now the Buckeyes look to show Iowa thanks by beating up on them in Iowa. Senior Quarterback Ricky Stanzi has had a stellar career for the Hawkeyes. Both of these teams really playgreat defense in every sense of the word. The only difference is Ohio State also puts up 41.6 points a game. Ohio State will have a little bit too much offensive firepower in the end as they grind out a hard fought victory on the road at Iowa by 3.
Virginia Tech at Miami (FL): The top 2 teams from the ACC Coastal Division square off in South Beach in a game that always has huge implications regarding the ACC Champion. VTech started out slow this year and suffered back to back losses to Boise State and James Madison to open up a year in which many had them as a big time National Title Contender. Miami on the other hand has been a mar of inconsistency. This team has not pulled together a 3 game win streak the entire season. Could they put together their first this week? I would have given the U a chance at home had Jacory Harris been available to play. But sadly, Jacory, who is extremely inconsistent in his own write will be unavailable for the Canes on Saturday. Frank Beamer has led to the Hokies to 10 or more wins 6 consecutive years, and 11 of the last 15 years. The man flat out knows how to win. Look for Beamer to ride a very balanced offensive and defensive attack to an ACC Coastal clinching victory over the U. Hokies by 6 on the road.
Arkansas at Mississippi State: So what if both of these two teams take up 2 of the bottom 3 spots in the SEC West. This half of the SEC has been insanely good this year. No Conference even touches the competitiveness and ability of the teams in this half of the SEC. All of the teams have 7 or more wins for crying out loud. Either way, both of these teams are still looking to place themselves into a solid Bowl Game. The Razorbacks are currently riding a 4 game win streak in which they have scored 38 or more points in each contest (which is not surprising in that average 37.9 points a game on the year). Mississippi State on the other hand was riding a 6 game win streak until they got “Rolled” by the Tide last weekend. Though the Bulldogs have rode a solid defensive unit to a very successful season thus far, Greg McElroy exposed the Bulldogs secondary last week. Expect Ryan Mallett to do the same with his 3rd ranked passing attack in the entire country. Razorbacks by 3 on the road in a tough SEC battle.
Nebraska at Texas A&M: Nebraska is looking to bring home a final Big 12 title before they depart for the Big Ten. Though the rest of the conference may be bitter towards the Cornhuskers, they have not really done too much about it. Nebraska currently sits atop the Big 12 North and is looking to clinch a spot in the Big 12 Championship game. Minus a hiccup against Texas, this Nebraska team has been one of the country’s elite, riding a very strong rushing attack and an amazing defensive unit. Texas A&M is also having a great season in their own right. Since turning over the quarterback reigns to, Ryan Tannehill, the Aggies have really gelled and are currently riding a 4 game winning streak. Will the new school pass first Aggies be able to take care of business against the old school running Cornhuskers? Not on this day. Look for Nebraska to punch their spot in the Big 12 Title Game with a tough 3 point win on the road.
So there you have my look at this week’s marquee games. I will admit that I did not call too many upsets this week. Though I did go with all road teams to come out victorious. But I am sticking with my gut on these games.
Enjoy the great slate of College Football games this weekend.
Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.