The first playoff standings were released and they were some head scratchers. Amid those standings, week ten saw some teams try to make statements and others, well, let’s just say they didn’t live up to their rankings. Here are my winners and losers:
- Alabama Crimson Tide: Quarterback Jalen Hurts had the only touchdown, a rushing touchdown in the third quarter. While the defense held up their end holding LSU to just 125 total yards defeating the Tigers 10-0. Even in an ugly game, the Tide were able to pull it off.
- Washington Huskies: Fans and experts including myself, felt the Huskies got hosed out of being in the top 4 the first playoff standings. So the Huskies decided to let their play do the talking. Quarterback Jake Browning threw for 378 yards and six touchdowns. Running backs Lavon Coleman and Myles Gaskin rushed for a combined 182 yards and two touchdowns. The defense caught three interceptions as the Huskies defeated the California Golden Bears easily 66-27. They’re now 9-0 for the first time since 1991 when they won the national championship. Best way for the Huskies to send a message is just to win out.
- Ohio State Buckeyes: It was all Buckeyes as quarterback JT Barrett threw for 290 yards and four touchdowns. Safeties Malik Hooker and Damon Webb each had a pick six as the Buckeyes hammered the Nebraska Cornhuskers 62-3.
- Louisville QB Lamar Jackson: Some experts felt that Boston College would be a trap game because of the Eagles’ defense. Guess Jackson didn’t get the memo as he threw for four touchdowns. He also rushed for 185 yards and two touchdowns as he helped his Cardinals destroy the Eagles 52-7. Suffice to say, Mr. Jackson is your leader in the Heisman race thus far.
- Oklahoma State Cowboys: Quarterback Mason Randolph threw for 457 yards and five touchdowns including the go-ahead touchdown to wide receiver Chris Carlson. A late interception helped the Cowboys hold off the Kansas State Wildcats 43-37, the Cowboys control their own destiny in the Big 12.
- LSU Tigers: Though the defense kept them in it, the offense was held to just 125 total yards and they weren’t able to get running back Leonard Fournette going in their loss to Alabama.
- Nebraska Cornhuskers: After losing quarterback Tommy Armstrong Jr. to a scary hit, the offense just couldn’t get going in their loss to Ohio State.
- Florida Gators: Quarterback Luke Del Rio’s two interceptions (one ended up being a pick six) and the offense being held to just 12 rushing yards were the Gators’ undoing in their loss to Arkansas 31-10. It’s their first loss to the Hogs in SEC play, the last loss was in the 1982 Bluebonnet Bowl. Thus throwing the SEC East into complete and total chaos.
- UCLA Bruins: Questionable offensive play-calling, being held to just 12 rushing yards and missed field goals doomed the Bruins in their loss to the Colorado Buffaloes 20-10. At 1-5 in conference play, if head coach Jim Mora’s hot seat wasn’t warm yet, it is now.
- Texas A&M Aggies: Many folks, (myself included) questioned the Aggies being number four in the first college football playoff rankings, our hunch was right as the defense gave up 365 rushing yards in their upset loss to the Mississippi State Bulldogs 35-28.
- Michigan State Spartans: The Spartans lost to the Illinois Fighting Illini 31-27, it’s their first loss to Illinois in a decade. Michigan State have now lost seven in a row, and are now 0-6 in the Big Ten for the first time EVER!!!
- Baylor Bears: The Bears were just steamrolled by the TCU Horned Frogs 62-22, I’ll just leave it at that.
- Notre Dame Fighting Irish: The defense gave up 320 rushing yards in their loss to the Navy Midshipman 28-27. It’s their first loss to Navy since 2010. The Irish now must win out to even get bowl eligible.
Storylines Going Into Week 11:
In the ACC, Pitt travels to Clemson.
In the Big 12, Oklahoma hosts Baylor. West Virginia faces Texas. Texas Tech battles Oklahoma State.
In the Big Ten, a hot Penn State plays upset-minded Indiana. Illinois faces Wisconsin. Minnesota goes to Nebraska. Michigan plays Iowa
In the Pac 12, USC goes to Washington
In the SEC, Auburn travels to Georgia. LSU plays Arkansas. Ole Miss goes to Texas A&M.
Heisman Trophy Finalists Include Joe Burrow, Justin fields, Jalen Hurts, Chase Young
The finalists for the Heisman Trophy have been unveiled and LSU quarterback Joe Burrow, Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts, and Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields and defensive end Chase Young are headed to New York this weekend for the 85th edition of the award for the most outstanding college football player.
The winner will be announced on Saturday night during a ceremony that kicks off at 8pm est on ESPN.
“In my opinion, he should win it,” LSU head coach Ed Orgeron said, according to ESPN’s Kyle Bonagura. “In my opinion, he’s going to win it. The best thing about Joe is he’s a team player. All he wants to do is win this game. Individual awards are not high on his list. That’s what makes him such a great team player.”
While Burrow may have the most momentum heading into the ceremony, and is the likely number 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, Young is the first Ohio State defensive player to finish in the top four in Heisman voting, and Young is the first defensive player from the Big Ten to do so since Michigan’s Charles Woodson won the award all the back in 1997.
Young led the nation with 16.5 sacks and in tackles for loss per game with 1.9.
Additionally, Ohio State is the seventh school to have multiple players invited to the Heisman ceremony in the same year, but the first to have both an offensive player and a defensive player.
Rutgers Brings Back Greg Schiano with Eight-Year, $32 Million Deal
Rutgers is bringing back Greg Schiano as their head coach following a lengthy negotiation process that has led to an eight-year, $32 million deal, according to ESPN.
“Today we open the next great chapter for Rutgers Football,” Rutgers athletic director Pat Hobbs said. “Coach Schiano is absolutely the best person to lead our program. He brings a quality of leadership and integrity that will make all of us proud in the years ahead. I couldn’t be more excited for our student-athletes and our fans.
“A lot of hard work lies ahead, but we will all keep chopping together with Coach to achieve success in the Big Ten. We all know what the goal is and we all must do our part. I can’t express enough appreciation to Greg and Christy Schiano, the first family of Rutgers Football. Welcome back!”
Schiano went 68-67 from 2001-2011 as Rutgers head coach.
“Rutgers University and this football program have meant the world to me and my family,” Schiano said in a statement put out by the school. “I arrived here in 2000 with the goal to build a program that would be a source of pride for the state of New Jersey and develop great young men. I look forward to embracing that challenge once again. This is a great opportunity for all of Rutgers to pull together to get us back to where we all know we belong. It will take everyone on this campus and in the State of Rutgers to get this done.”
Schiano left Rutgers in 2012 to become the head coach of the Tamp Bay Buccaneers, in a tenure that lasted just two years.
“I commend Rutgers Athletics Director Pat Hobbs and Coach Schiano for reaching an agreement following very complex negotiations to bring on this new, exciting chapter for Rutgers Athletics,” Rutgers President Robert Barchi said. “We are all thrilled to welcome Coach Schiano. He is the right coach at the right time to build our Big Ten football program into a long-running source of pride for Rutgers.”
Ole Miss Fires Matt Luke
Ole Miss is moving on from head coach Matt Luke, who was fired on Sunday following three seasons at the helm of the Rebels.
“After evaluating the overall trajectory of our football program, we did not see enough momentum on the field and determined a change is necessary in order for our student-athletes to compete at the highest level” Athletics director Keith Carter said in an official statement.
“While improvements were evident in certain aspects of the program, we are judged ultimately by our record, and, unfortunately, we did not meet the standard of success that we expect from our program. We will always be grateful to Coach Luke for his leadership, particularly from a recruiting, academic and overall culture standpoint. At the same time, winning is important, and we know that we can compete for championships at Ole Miss.
“A search is underway to find a new head coach who can build a complete program that attracts top talent, develops them as young men and sustains a winning mentality. We will be looking for the leadership, energy and commitment to excellence necessary to compete in the Southeastern Conference and galvanize our passionate fan base.”
Luke compiled a 15-21 record during his tenure at Ole Miss.
According to the Clarion Ledger’s Nick Suss, the firing of Luke was not well-received by some of the players, with some storming out of the team meeting angry over the decision.
Many are speculating that the Egg Bowl was what set the firing in motion. However, it is worth noting that attendance was becoming an issue in the midst of a losing season, and with a new athletic director in the fold, change was likely coming sooner or later.
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