College Football Week 6 review | October 8, 2012
A repeat of the 2011 National Championship game between Alabama and LSU which resulted in the Crimson Tide being crowned National champions, should not re-occur this season. It should not because, LSU who last week looked ropey versus Towson followed up with another low-key offensive effort versus SEC rival Florida.
Florida have had an under the radar sort of season with Will Muschamp in his 2nd season as head coach. Florida led by RB Mike Gillislee who had 146 yards off 34 carries for 2 TDs in a 14-6 triumph for the Gators who now sit who moved from #10 to #4 on the basis of this victory. The LSU Tigers drop to #9 and must have to beat Alabama to be considered for the National title game.
Other upsets (based on rankings) saw #3 FSU lose on the road at NC State in a 17-16 thriller, where the Wolfpack came back from a 16-0 halftime deficit to upset the leading ACC team. NC State converted three 4th downs in the last minute touchdown drive that ended with Mike Glennon connecting with Bryan Underwood with 16 seconds left. #3 FSU fell to to 5-1 and #12 in the rankings. For the Seminoles, this was an opportunity to cement their place in the rankings on a day of upsets, considering they play Boston College next week, the chance of 7-0 has gone.
In a tasty SEC matchup, #6 South Carolina Gamecocks hosted #5 Georgia Bulldogs and as predicted in this blog last week, the Gamecocks had too much for the Dawgs with Conor Shaw and Marcus Lattimore being the stars. Shaw had 240 total yards (6-10, 162 yds in the air, 2 TDs; 78 rushes for 1 TD) with Lattimore supporting 109 yards off 24 carries and 1 TD. The Gamecocks won 35-7, including a punt return TD and scored the first 35pts of the game leaving the Bulldogs with no chance. The Gamecocks rise to #3 in the poll behind Bama and Oregon; Georgia fall to 14.
The other marquee match up was West Virginia Mountaineers visiting Texas Longhorns with Geno Smith on the prowl for more yards and TDs. WVU won 48-45 on the road, in a big time win that saw them elevate from #8 to #5. Whilst he was more of a thrower, 25-35, 268yds for 4 TDs he did not have any turnovers meaning it is 24 TDs in 5 games and no interceptions.
Notre Dame demolished Miami 41-3 at home to go from #9 to #7 built upon a dual running back show from Cierre Wood and George Atkinson III who ran for 118 and 123 yards – the first time the Irish have had two 100+yd running backs in the same game for over a decade. The Irish are not slipping up as they have been prone to do in recent years – they still some tough games left on the schedule including Stanford, @ Oklahoma and finishing @ USC on Nov.24 but they could conceivably be perfect which will lead to a lot of discussion.
So where does this leave the national title picture? Alabama had the week off so would have been pleased to see LSU lose. Oregon Ducks steam rolled Washington 52-21, and that looks the most likely scenario even if Alabama were to lose a close one to the Tigers.
In the grander scheme of things, the Gamecocks look game ready and will more than likely give Bama/LSU a game in the SEC championship to decide the SEC representative of the National Championship; but do not discount Florida who played solidly to defeat the Tigers this week and will be difficult to ward off. High scoring grabs people’s attention, so if WVU and Geno Smith continue on their record-breaking year they will figure in the shake up.
As ever with College Football, expect the unexpected. In Week 7 -Alabama return on the road at Missouri; WVU are on the road again to Texas Tech; as previously mentioned, #17 Stanford visit #7 Notre Dame; #4 Florida go to Vanderbilt and in the match-up of the day newly crowned #3 South Carolina test their mettle against #9 LSU. #2 Oregon have the week off.