:: Friday, November 22, 2002 ::
Weekend Preview: Rivalry Week! (and so many chances for the BCS rankings to explode)
:: Monday, November 18, 2002 ::
• Michigan - Ohio St. The Big One. Both teams are fairly schizophrenic based on where they're playing (away or home). That, and a sound kicking game, favor the Buckeyes, regardless of Maurice Clarett's status. Krenzel and Co. head to the Fiesta Bowl, 34-31.
• Washington - Washington St. Washington State's big chance to make a statement for the Championship game -- aside from rooting for Michigan. Cody Pickett's had a stellar year for Washington, but tomorrow will be Jason Gesser's day to shine. Apple Cup heads back to Pullman, 42-30.
• Texas Tech - Oklahoma. Can Kliff Kingsbury do it for a second straight week? Are we on the verge of seeing a Colorado - Texas Tech Big 12 Championship game? Probably not. Oklahoma is playing too well, and eventually, Kingsbury's arm's gotta get tired, right? Maybe not, but Sooners win, 28-20.
• USC - UCLA. Trojans are rolling towards the postseason: Carson Palmer is playing unbelievably well, while the defense is surging. UCLA has hobbled together an offense behind a couple of freshman QB's and a freshman running back. They'll be toast. USC heads towards the holidays, 35-17.
• Rutgers - Notre Dame. Ah, yes, the storied rivalry between Rutgers and Notre Dame. Navy played the Irish tough, the Scarlet Knights are ready for the challenge. A game which won't help Notre Dame's BCS hopes, this one will be closer than the experts think. Irish come from behind to beat Rutgers, 28-24.
• Florida St - NC St. Wolfpack have been playing terribly; a game against the Seminoles won't help. Bobby Bowden made the tough decision to switch to Adrian McPherson, and it's paid off. Florida St avenges its loss from last year big time, 45-21.
• Oregon - Oregon St. The Civil War, between friendly woodland creatures. Neither team is playing up to expectations. Ducks have been decimated by injuries to a significant portion of their offense, and although the Beavers have improved this year, it's hardly where they were a few years ago with a win over Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl. In the end, injuries cost the Ducks too much, and Oregon State wins, 34-24.
• Auburn - Alabama. If every game is a bowl game this year for Alabama, this is the big one. Franchione's done a fabulous job keeping his team focused and prepared, so I don't doubt that they'll be ready for this one. 'Bama wins, 37-20.
:: Kristen 1:10 PM [+] ::
:: Friday, November 15, 2002 ::
This season is starting to feel like the season of the Sopranos -- just building up to that episode when the big whackings take place. I sense big whackings next week.
• Ohio St 23, Illinois 16. Once again, Tressel's crew barely survives. Although that Krenzel run in the first quarter really was a touchdown, it should never have gotten this close. I know next week's game against Michigan is at the 'Shoe, but the Buckeyes have really struggled against unranked opponents. What will happen when a much-improved Michigan team arrives?
• Texas 38, Texas Tech 42. And the Chris Simms bashers are once again validated. Although there were some seriously pretty passes to BJ Johnson and Roy Williams. Kliff Kingsbury has now become the late season's Dave Ragone.
• Iowa 45, Minnesota 21. Congrats to Iowa on an amazing season -- if anyone deserves the Big 10 Championship outright, it's the Hawkeyes. And kudos to the Mark Jones - Bob Davie duo who managed to showcase a virtual Iowa - Ohio St matchup via the video game. Iowa won.
• Washington 42, Oregon 14. I'm glad that by the end of the day, the stats had been corrected -- it was being reported that Cody Pickett had broken the all time PAC-10 career passing record, something I really couldn't believe was possible, especially for a sophomore who did start last year but was hurt for part of the season. The record is actually for passing yards in one season. Much more believable. In any case, the Apple Cup next weekend is looking like a very compelling matchup...
• Harvard 9, Penn 44. And the best reason why GameDay should never go back to a Division I-AA game: after thoroughly trouncing the Crimson, about 50 Penn students took to the field to tear down the goalposts, a right they had definitely earned. After trying for some time, THEY COULDN'T DO IT. In the end, they made off with a bench. That's rich.
:: Kristen 5:56 AM [+] ::
Weekend Preview: Not the Most Interesting Matchups, but What Can You Do?
:: Monday, November 11, 2002 ::
• Georgia - Auburn. Dawgs bounced back from their loss to Florida, now travel to Auburn, who's not looking bad themselves; they just beat the powerhouse known as LA Monroe. David Greene plays this one, Bulldogs keep their BCS dreams alive, 31-24.
• Arizona St - USC. And the unlikely Heisman campaign of Carson Palmer continues. Trojans win, 30-17.
• Alabama - LSU. Another "Bluegrass Miracle" in store? I think not. Nick Saban's crew still hungover, 'Bama wins 27-14.
• NC St - Virginia. Can Chuck Amato right that sinking ship known as the Wolfpack? I think this is the week. Philip Rivers comes to his senses and TA McClendon runs wild, 35-21.
• Washington - Oregon. Will Oregon play that "unflattering" video of Rick Neuheisel again on their big screen at Autzen Stadium? Not this year. Ducks learn to be gracious winners, 38-20.
:: Kristen 2:01 PM [+] ::
Weekend Roundup: Another one bites the dust (oh right, and Bowling Green does, too)
:: Friday, November 08, 2002 ::
• Miami 26, Tennessee 3. A strong showing from the Hurricanes... finally. Note to Larry Coker: I think desperation worked as a motivational tool.
• Oklahoma 26, Texas A&M 30. And the job security gods have smiled upon RC Slocum.
• Ohio St 10, Purdue 6. A stunning lack of offensive power in this game. Illinois should be a decent tune-up game for the Buckeyes next week, but then will they be able to face a surging Michigan team?
• Virginia Tech 42, Syracuse 50. What is up with Virginia Tech? And, for that matter, what is up with Syracuse? Do we have a case of the Hokies looking so far ahead to December 7 that they can't even get it together for a November 2 or November 9 game? Watch out -- a tough West Virginia team awaits next weekend.
• Notre Dame 30, Navy 23. Notre Dame with the big hangover from the loss to BC, barely beats... Navy?? One can only wonder what Notre Dame's BCS chances would have been with this loss.
• LSU 33, Kentucky 30. One of the greatest finishes ever. Sort of like That Colorado-Michigan Game from a few years back... (apologies to Michigan fans for bringing this up).
• N Illinois 26, Bowling Green 17. Yeah, for a while, I thought I would have to learn more about Bowling Green. Oh well.
:: Kristen 6:21 AM [+] ::
Weekend Preview: Who will fall this week?
:: Tuesday, November 05, 2002 ::
Since I have very little time today, I decided that rather than miss this week, I'll just list my picks as quickly as possible... I'll be back next week.
• Miami over Tennessee, 35-20.
• Oklahoma over Texas A&M, 21-10.
• Ohio St over Purdue, 34-17.
• Washington St over Oregon, 41-30. (And a big thumbs down goes to the new Oregon Duck mascot.)
• Georgia over Mississippi, 28-20.
• Kansas St over Iowa St, 27-17.
• NC St over Maryland, 31-24.
• Georgia Tech over Florida St, 27-24. (Greg Jones is out.)
:: Kristen 6:15 AM [+] ::
And then there were 3.... Part 2
:: Sunday, November 03, 2002 ::
Michigan State has fired head coach Bobby Williams, leaving only three African-American head coaches in Division I-A football. Ever since Jesse Jackson and his crew got involved, doesn't it seem like things have gotten worse? In the NFL, both Denny Green and Tony Dungy were fired, although Dungy was subsequently hired by the Colts. Denny Green was replaced by Mike Tice, who isn't exactly lighting it up. So there's a total of one African-American head coach in the NFL. In college football, Ty Willingham was hired by Notre Dame, but that didn't increase the number of African-American head coaches in Division I-A. And now Bobby Williams has been fired.
It seems that the high profile jobs are not the answer -- Jesse Jackson and his buddies need to get more African-American coaches into the pipeline at all levels: assistants, head coaches in lower divisions, etc. Only then will the more high profile, Division I-A jobs more readily go to African-Americans. And hopefully someday, news of a Bobby Williams being fired will only be news for the on-the-field implications.
:: Kristen 7:30 AM [+] ::
Weekend Roundup: And then there were 3... (sorry, I can't seriously comment on Bowling Green's Fiesta Bowl hopes)
• Miami 42, Rutgers 17. How close we were to having only 2 left... Every week, Miami comes out and sees how close they can get to losing. Most of the players probably can't remember their last loss, thus maybe a sense of invincibility over in the Hurricane locker room? If Miami wants back into the National Championship game, that better stop fast. A hungry Tennessee team next week and Virginia Tech still looming.
• Colorado 11, Oklahoma 27. Oklahoma is actually playing like they want to be national champs. It's funny that all the experts who were touting the Sooners before the season started threw their lot in behind the arm of Jason White. Nate Hybl must be laughing.
• Pittsburgh 28, Virginia Tech 21. Holy cow. Hokies lose Kevin Jones and then the game. Well, they'll have nothing to lose when they travel down to the Orange Bowl in a few weeks.
• Georgia 13, Florida 20. The smile on Rex Grossman's face at the end of the game said it all. Gators lose Taylor Jacobs and then remember about their horribly underutilized tight ends. Injuries finally caught up with the Dawgs.
• Boston College 14, Notre Dame 7. OK, so the Irish didn't run the table, much less survive yesterday. But let's make this clear: BC didn't beat Notre Dame. Notre Dame (and a horrible call negating an Irish TD) beat Notre Dame. My neighborhood will be dealing with drunk BC students for the next couple of weeks.
• Georgia Tech 24, NC St 17. A great win for Chan Gailey. TA McClendon was totally shut down, and Philip Rivers couldn't pull it off by himself. Dropped passes didn't help his case.
• Marshall 20, Akron 34. So is Byron Leftwich a hero or totally insane? Commentators have been talking about how amazing he is, that he played hurt. But this seems to be no common injury. No doubt you've seen the highlight reels showing linemen literally carrying Leftwich upfield to line up for a first down. If he's not careful, he'll hurt team and his future career even more.
• Clemson 34, Duke 31. Blue Devils were so, so close. And hey, nice job, cameraman who let the nation see Charlie Whitehurst screaming f***ing bulls**t after a lousy series.
:: Kristen 9:55 AM [+] ::