Did you see Oregon against Stanford? Man. The Stanford defense may not be world beaters -- and they're obviously light years away from what the LSU D has to offer -- but to watch that game and tell me you don't think a) Oregon looked damn impressive, or b) Oregon hasn't improved since LSU... then I might be sad you disagree with my really strong opinion on those two things. That offense could burn down skyscrapers. Especially when they're 'on'. And boy, they're on right now. I love the way they play. I love the way Chip Kelly coaches. Full maximization of talent, cohesive offense... it's like the players aren't just on the same page, they're on the same letter of the same word in the same sentence. If college football had 10 more teams like Oregon, it would potentially rival the NFL in quality. As a college football hater, I feel no shame in saying that.
It's still somwhat early, but an Okie State-LSU national title would be pretty great, too. Take everything I just said about Oregon, make it a little less passionate, and it's basically how I feel about Okie. They put up so many points. To see LSU stifle them would be a testament to the physical capabilities of that defense. And if that's the route the horrible SEC takes to win their 5,000th national title in a row, it's one I can accept the easiest.
No 'Bama-LSU rematch. No, no, no. Nononononononononono. Surely there is an LOL Cat that exists to summarize my thoughts.
So that's me. The rematch is water, to me. If anyone deserves a rematch, it's Oregon. They've played a better schedule than 'Bama -- maybe. -- and their game against LSU was actually good. Did they lose by double digits? Well, yeah. But they did it with dignity, damn it! Seriously, though, they did put up three touchdowns against the Greatest Defense Ever. I think between that loss and their loss to Auburn in last year's national title (remember, those losses, though between seasons, came consecutively), they've licked their wounds and learned how to deal with SEC teams a little bit better. I'm not saying they'd beat LSU -- I am by no means saying that -- but I truly feel it'd be a better game than seeing the Alabama-LSU rock-paper-scissors-where-everybody-throws-rock-every-time rematch. Bleh.
Let's just keep waiting and freak out for no reason until we have real answers, then we can freak out some more.
(* = unbeaten, son)
1) LSU*: Other people have voices on this, too.
Hybrid reader Brian P. weighs in with his ideal national title scenario:
Okie St vs Oregon!! Those offenses against each other?! FUCKIN' SWEET! I'd pick Oregon, they seem like a better team and have been rolling lately.But it'll probably be something stupid...like LSU vs anyone...
Haha, so greatly worded.
2) Oklahoma State*: Oh, how you have risen. This is yours to lose. Yours to take.
3) Alabama: Oregon's knockin' on your door, assholes.
4) Oregon: Stay your murderous course.
5) Oklahoma: Historically, I love y'all. But you really need to go away. It's not happening this year, and all you can do is F up the Okie State season, which literally no one wants you to do.
I don't have a heart of stone, however, as my sympathies are with Landry Jones' truck.
6) Arkansas: ...?
7) Clemson: .......?!
8) Virginia Tech
9) Stanford: How over is your season?
10) Boise State: A loss so terrible, it's almost not worth dissecting. Wow, TCU.
11) Houston*: Houston staying at No. 11 despite being undefeated is getting comical to the point where I'm starting to feel bad for them. Boise is still ahead of them! Where do we go from here? Do they move down in the polls after they win their next game?
Seriously, though, what's the real scenario from here? Do they go to a BCS? You'd have to think they do, right? Then do they get to play a cool defense? Damn well better if Case Keenum insists on rattling everyone's cages for the last eight years. Ideally, they'll play 'Bama and get killed or put up, like, 14 points and call it a moral victory. Super ideally, they'll prove everyone wrong and beat a respectable team... and make it that much more depressing they didn't get a national title shot.
12) South Carolina
13) Kansas State
15) Michigan State: Michigan State's head coach was asked if he'd be rooting for Michigan this week (because if they beat Nebraska, State will win their division and advance to the Big Ten Title game). His great answer? "I'm not built that way. Because I am an idiot."
I added that last part.
16) Nebraska: Glorious Bo Pelini pic -- then subsequent zoom-in of the pic -- can be found here. Just go.
17) Wisconsin: All I ever do in this column is glorify Bucky, the Wisconsin mascot, and then, without me even asking, he participates in this...
All we need is Jim Ross on the call. Bucky is by far the best.
18) Michigan: Saw Denard in person this week at the Michigan-Illinois game at Memorial Stadium. He scored a rushing TD and my eyes welled up, only slightly. He was then benched for most of the second half. It was, uh, bittersweet.
19) TCU: So you go ahead and knock off Boise on a ballsy two-point conversion call, which we all agree was pretty cool, but then you go ahead and ruin it by making victory t-shirts?
TCU, TCU. I thought you were striving for legitimacy. One step forward, two steps back, I say.
The purple shirt has the TCU football logo on the front and says, "Won and Done" with the score underneath. The word "Done" is in Boise State's orange and blue.
Interpret the T-shirt however you want...
Like interpreting it as stupid? Don't mind of I do! Andy Dalton would be rolling in his grave.
20) Southern Miss
21) Penn State: So close from my life goal of Penn State no longer being ranked this season.
23) Texas: You did lose last week, right?
24) Auburn: And you, too, right?
25) Florida State: Hey! Sup, FSU?
Dropped from (AP) rankings, sponsored by the triple option: Georgia Tech (wait, did you lose), Texas (I know you lost), Cincinnati (think I heard your Q was out for the year, yes? I am sorry), Auburn (peaaace)
Aurburn Side Bar: Nick Fairley was getting raked through the coals by all the blindly pro-Chicago Bear fan idiots. I spent a solid two hours defending him on Monday morning, but then the SEC guy I work with sent me this video of all his dirty plays from college. Peep. How can your opinion of him not drastically change (for the worse) after that? Horrible.
We could use this space to talk about the game he won where he attempted less than 10 passes and only completed two. We could. Or, we can giddily anticipate his game against the New York Jets this Thursday! Rovell has a tweet about how, like, 95% of the action is on the Jets. How great is that? This could be Tebow's biggest NFL chapter. Everyone will be watching. 2Pac "All Eyez On Me" cover to add significance and serious to this? ...Yes.
A solid 14% of me debated MS painting Tebow's face on Pac's, but I mostly didn't want to waste anyone's time. Seriously: Tebow makes it out of this game without a mass failure, and we might all need to re-evaluate our lives.
To the slate we go...
North Carolina at Virginia Tech (8): The ACC has been about nine feet under in this column since pretty much the start of the year, so we'll include this out of respect.
Oklahoma State (2) at Iowa State: My super boys Okie State are playing on Friday Night against my super mega boys Iowa State?! Sign me up with a permanent marker. All caps "Friday Night Lights" to for added emphasis? ....Yes.
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS.
Hit me with the FNL picture!
Nebraska (16) at Michigan (18): A game way less significance in reality than in concept. Which is unfortunate. Hey, I'm excited, though.
Wisconsin (17) at Illinois: The .000001% respect I have for Illinois is why this game is here.
Related... Wisconsin RB Montee Ball, before last week's game:
Montee Ball says he is not a big stats guy.
But the Wisconsin junior running back knew that he needed three touchdowns against Minnesota last week to set the Big Ten single-season scoring record. He was so aware that he asked his coaches before the game if he could keep the ball when he broke the record, or if he would get called for delay of game.
The Badgers cleared it with the officials, and Ball did the rest. His three-yard dive into the end zone early in the fourth quarter gave him 27 touchdowns so far this season, breaking the mark that was shared Ohio State's Pete Johnson (1975), Indiana's Anthony Thompson (1989) and Penn State's Ki-Jana Carter (1994).
I love how Ball isn't a "stats guy" but asked in advance about keeping a ball in a game where he needed three touchdowns for the record.
These things happen when you play Minnesota.
Iowa at Purdue: My Iowa-Purdue preview: Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz pooping a headset.
Georgia Southern at Alabama (3): Sweet game, no one.
Mississippi State at Arkansas (6): Mississippi State always seems to find a way to rope single digit ranked teams into games that can only be considered 'super crappy'.
Southern Methodist at Houston (11): Then Houston is all like "no, that's us but reversed!!!"
Penn State (21) at Ohio State: Young Buckeyes, your time is now. Kill.
LSU (1) at Ole Miss: How can people seriously think the SEC is good. Games like these are a complete normality in that top heavy conference. It's just like any other conference, I swurr it is.
USC at Oregon (4): SC really could have done us a decency and grabbed the No. 25 ranking. At least. But whatever. Odd to say, this is probably our Game of the Week.
Oklahoma (5) at Baylor (22): On paper, our Game of the Week, but I'm just not feeling it. It probably has to do with me not really buying OU as a legit national title contender.
Every year, once my actual favorite teams (Michigan, Iowa, Washington State) have been eliminated from the national title picture (by, you know, losing just one game), my buddy Ryan and I create what we call the "College Football Bandwagon" which mostly consists of a list of all the undefeated BCS conference teams minus Notre Dame (and sometimes others). The goal of the CFB is to fake feel good about yourself when your "team" makes the national title game. Plus it provides invested, fake rooting interests.
Stanford: Not looking it up, but you know there were a ton of horrible "Luck's Run Out"-type headlines this week.
Boise State: You were not actually on the list, but down you go anyway! Secure that kicking game before the Big East, dudes. Actually... it probably doesn't matter.
WHERE IS MY JIM MORA MACHINE?!
That's right, your boy made the college fantasy football (!) playoffs. Is this real life? The answer is no. Because I am favored to lose by double digits, we'll do a position by position breakdown, with sweet analysis by me.
My team ("Denard") is playing a team owned by notorious Hybrid reader (and already mentioned this week) Brian P. His team is called "Dick-Six", and, ironically, features the real Denard Robinson.
Brian P: Denard (Michigan) / Me: Russell Wilson (Wisconsin)
Denard is coming off an injury where he missed the second half to face Nebraska. Who even knows if he'll start? He probably will, but I assume the Nebraska D is pretty tight. Then again, they lost at home to Northwestern. Russell Wilson is coming off a performance where he threw 4 TDs and one incomplete pass. He plays Illinois at Illinois. I like my chances here. Advantage: Me.
Brian P: Silas Redd (Penn State) / Me: Treyvon Green (Northwestern)
Huge advantage to Brian P, but only if Silas Redd is healthy. Word on the street is he was hampered last week. Advantage: Me, assuming Redd = Dedd.
Brian P: Akeem Shavers (Purdue) / Me: Jordan Hall (Ohio State)
Advantage should be mine here. Except Hall splits time with Carlos Hyde, another Ohio State RB who I also own. Lately, one goes off and the other sucks, so I have to basically pick between the two and hope for the best. Advantage: Me, if I guessed right.
Brian P: Jeremy Ebert (Northwestern) / Me: Junior Hemingway (Michigan)
Ebert is basically the Wes Welker of this fantasy league. He also will be playing Minnesota. Huge advantage to Brian P here. Hemingway is just too inconsistent.
Brian P: Keyshawn Martin (Michigan State) / Me: Justin Siller (Purdue)
Michigan State's No. 2 WR vs. anyone on Purdue? Advantage: Brian P.
Brian P: Kenny Bell (Nebraska) / Me: Roy Roundtree (Michigan)
Limited production from both. Kind of a wash. Advantage: Even.
Brian P: Ben Cotton (Nebraska) / Me: Drake Dunsmore (Northwestern)
My tight end, Drake Dunsmore, has more than lived up to his cool name this season, especially after Northwestern QB Dan Persa returned. Nebraska barely passes. Advantage: Me
Brian P: The Iowa Kicker / Me: The Michigan State Kicker
Advantage: Me; my dude's projected for four points more. And those things are, like, never wrong.
Brian P: Wisconsin / Me: Illinois
This is where it gets horrible/kinda cool. I have Russell Wilson, my top scorer, playing against my defense, Illinois. It's a complete lose-lose, I say. I suppose we'll just have to hope for a shoot out in Champaign this weekend. But that'll only be a half-good thing. Big advantage: Brian P.
* * *
Overall, I think Brian will win (he's favored 98-79), but it's kind of a toss up. The best part? The entire Big Ten slate is being played between the 11 a.m. games and the 2:30 p.m. games, meaning the entire playoff will be decided before 7 p.m. on Saturday. As lame as it sounds, it's going to be exciting as hell. And the winner guarantees -- at worst -- to get their money back. No one wants to lose money to a college fantasy football (!) league. No one.
Wrapping It Up...
I really wanna win that college fantasy football playoff game. What a time to be alive.
Bobby Loesch is the assistant editor of Tremendous Upside Potential and a weekly contributor to SBN Chicago. He can be reached at bobbyloesch [at] gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @bobbystompy.