Monday, October 24, 2011

Monday Night QB and the Top-25

It's a two-fer, folks.
I didn't have a Georgia game to write-up a Sunday morning review of and their was too much excitement late to start getting my thoughts down clearly before the Falcons kicked-off yesterday (Rise Up, BTW). So, this week, you get the Sunday Morning QB and the weekly poll all wrapped up into one neat bundle. I'm going to take my rankings pretty much team-by-team, throw in some thoughts on a few un-ranked squads, then give you a quick top-25 cheat sheet at the end. Enjoy!

Dear god, did LSU look good destroying Auburn Saturday afternoon. I honestly thought that game would be pretty close, maybe even be a trap-ish game for the personnel-short Bayou Bengals. Damn, was I wrong. Tennessee hung around with Alabama for two impressive quarters, but somehow I think we all knew doom was inevitable. Both LSU and 'Bama get a week off to prepare for their Nov. 5th showdown - it should be a good one.

Stanford is an impressive, impressive football team. And, just because you're not watching them on TV doesn't mean it ain't so. The Cardinal racked up 450 yards rushing against a surging Washington team, have a top-5 defense, and Luck is the best QB in the nation. But, it won't do them any good. People think the Stanford schedule's too soft and tend to overlook the Cardinal when they're ranking the un-beatens. Hopefully for Luck and Co., more heads will turn when they beat USC and Oregon. Until then, at least I'll fight the good fight for them.

Clemson and Oklahoma State round out the top-5. I am not comfortable with either of these teams, honestly. It just keeps felling like the bottom's gonna fall out as soon as I put my faith into them. Maybe I'm unfairly judging them by past slides and disappointments, but I feel like Clemson will drop at least two before the ACC CG and OK State will get straight dropped in Bedlam.

Oregon got trounced by LSU. Arkansas was similarly thrashed by Alabama. But the more unbeatable those two juggernauts look, the more positively those losses to them can be interpreted. Texas A&M gets to hang around in the top-10 by the same principle. They do have two losses, but they're to the aforementioned Cowboys and Razorbacks. And, oh yeah, Kansas State's still undefeated. No, seriously.

Michigan State's defense was truly, truly impressive Saturday night. The Spartan's coaching staff threw more fronts and blitzes at Wisconsin than the Badgers could adjust to. I know I'm high on Wilson, Ball, Toon, and the O-line, but they need some help up top from the position coaches and coordinators. Put simply, the Spartans are one finely coached team. That - and the win, of course - is why they trump Boise for a top-10 spot.

Boise State will need to better than staving off Air Force to earn enough props to stay highly ranked. 

Wisconsin and Oklahoma dropped pretty far. I kept the Badgers over the Sooners mainly because OU really has no excuse losing in Norman. Texas Tech receives one of the biggest jumps in FTS poll history, debuting at no. 13. They do have two losses, but they're A&M and Kansas State, both top-10 teams, and I felt they deserved to be higher than the team they just beat. Of course, I think Wisky and OU will rebound - but they've got several weeks of poll left to climb back to their proper perch...or fall even farther.Nebraska's thrown in there for good measure at no. 13, appropriately behind Wisconsin, but not too far from their previous spot.

Michigan, South Carolina, and Arizona State did not play and are awarded by getting to hover near their previous ranks. Virginia Tech and Houston won, but not with great flair or over great competition; they, too, hover. BTW, Case Keenum is now the total yardage career leader - deal with it.

I can haz all the yrdz?
Penn State has very quietly gone 7-1, with their only blemish a fairly close - by comparison, anyway - loss to Alabama. Another win and I'll have to move them into the top-15.

I have to agree with Matt Barkley, it felt like Notre Dame quit. They should have used their timeouts, but chose not to, instead allowing the Trojans to drain over six minutes with running plays. For their win, SoCal gets a ranking. And, dare I say it, Kiffin did not seem completely, well, Kiffin-y. Things could be turning in L.A.

I know Washington got BLASTED by Stanford this past weekend. But, if I honestly believe what I wrote above about the Cardinal, I can't fault the Huskies too much for the loss can I?

Lastly, for lack of better options, Georgia and Texas get the last two spots. I know some people are going to rank Syracuse, West Virginia, Cincinnati, Southern Miss,  Georgia Tech, or Illinois, but not me. WVU lost to 'Cuse, who lost to Rutgers - that DQ's both those teams. Cincy got owned by Tennessee. Would you rank Tennessee? I didn't think so. SoMiss is the most likely of the bunch to get my vote, but not until they atone for that loss to Marshall with a few more wins. As for GA Tech and the Zookers? They're done until we see more dubs. Also, Wreck Tech, hahaha!

Any questions? Here's the poll:
  1. LSU
  2. Alabama
  3. Stanford
  4. Clemson
  5. Oklahoma State
  6. Oregon
  7. Kansas State
  8. Arkansas
  9. Texas A&M
  10. Michigan State
  11. Boise State
  12. Wisconsin
  13. Texas Tech
  14. Nebraska
  15. Oklahoma
  16. South Carolina
  17. Virginia Tech
  18. Michigan
  19. Arizona State
  20. Penn State
  21. USC
  22. Houston
  23. Washington
  24. Georgia
  25. Texas

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