College Football Bad Beats of the Week
I got blindsided a little with the Navy-Pittsburgh game. I guess I was giving Navy quarterback Ricky Dobbs a little more credit than he deserved as a passer. Maybe the Navy coaching staff did too. They let him toss it up 21 times, but he only completed six. I guess that's because they only gained 2.8 yards a carry with 129 rushing yards, which was a bit of a surprise for me. It's not that the Middies don't know how to run the ball anymore either. I'll file something away on the Pittsburgh defense for future reference.
Southern Miss didn't cover, though the Eagles beat Virginia 37-34. While Virginia rebounded from a rough start last year to pull off some upsets, there was no reason to believe they would do that on this particular occasion, considering the problems they were having with the new spread offense.
Well, they got something going, with 312 yards passing. Jamaal Sewell, who completed 24 passes on the day, is someone to watch. A friend of mine who used to scout for the NFL thinks that he has the size and arm to be one of the top quarterback prospects in the country.
From this point forward, I don't think we'll be talking about a sputtering Virginia offense, though the pressure may be on coach Al Groh, who is still winless.
I have to admit that Kansas State frustrated the hell out of me. They should have won the game as a 12.5-point underdog, especially with UCLA starting a mistake-prone quarterback in Kevin Craft. They just needed to get the ball more into the hands of Daniel Thomas, who has size and explosive speed, but who couldn't get it enough in open space.
You see, he had to get it in open space, because the K-State offensive line is so bad. They couldn't clear holes for their running backs, and couldn't protect quarterback Carson Coffman, who was sacked six times. That's pretty much all there is to it, and when the Wildcats go against some capable Big 12 squads you've got to remember that. Another thing - playing the Little Sisters of the Poor does not prepare you to play big-time programs.
Time will tell how much of a factor the sore ankle of Jacquizz Rodgers really had on Oregon State's home loss (and my loss too) against Cincinnati. He gained 73 yards and admitted after the game that he was having problems. I can tell you this much - Cincinnati, which won the game 28-18, is for real. Tony Pike is for real. To travel with just one true veteran on defense and beat a team like this makes them, to me, the favorite to win the Big East again.
I can't say that I am particularly shocked by the fact that Ohio State blew out Toledo (38-0). After all, this is a Big Ten power facing off against a team from the MAC, which is probably only stronger than the Sun Belt as a conference.
I did think that the Buckeyes would have still had a hangover from that USC game, and since Toledo has at least shown the ability to put the ball in the air, they had enough to get the back door. Well, there was no back door, front door or side door in this game.
Toledo had nine first downs, 4.4 yards per pass, and a non-existent running game. Even if you took away the sacks of Aaron Opelt, they ran for 29 yards on ten carries. Yeah, it's a very big jump for MAC teams, but this result may reflect a little more on a team like Colorado, which was simply lit up by Toledo the week before last.
I'm sure I just made a mistake thinking Oklahoma State could run it up on a Rice team that had shown no ability whatsoever to keep other teams out of the end zone, but they couldn't. The final was 41-16, but this was only an eleven-point game until there were about two minutes to go in the third quarter. It was kind of ho-hum, with Zac Robinson completing just 14 passes and Kendall Hunter missing the game with an injury (they did not make up for him in a big way), but the good news was that Zac Bryant broke out a little, with 161 yards in catches.
If I was an OSU fan (or backer, as it were), I would be more than a bit concerned about the defense, which allowed 377 yards, and that was not all garbage.
I don't know what I learned about Florida State's rather resounding 54-28 win over BYU except that I should probably keep my mouth shut about their running game, because they piled up 313 yards on the ground.
I will say this - I know that BYU's defensive front is not a bunch of pushovers because of the way it played against Oklahoma. If the Seminoles can show that kind of balance to complement Christian Ponder, who is coming along quite nicely as a quarterback, they'll give everyone trouble.
The team that was in action against BYU gives Florida a game. Oh yeah - Dustin Hopkins missed another extra point for FSU.....but if you're intercepting Max Hall (remember him - the FORMER fringe Heisman candidate) three times, it hardly even matters.
As for the pros, don't even get me started. I'm not getting paid by the word.