What did we learn last week in football? Well, the NFL is turning into professional wrestling... it has to be staged. How in the world could this happen if isn’t?
Onward to college football. As I said at the beginning of the season, to me, every single Texas Longhorn game is the biggest game of the week. I write about Texas elsewhere, so here I’ll write about the other games going on. Just a friendly reminder. Now, onto the non-Horns games to watch in week five.
Ohio State Buckeyes at No. 18 Michigan State Spartans: 2:30 p.m. on ABC
Ohio State is not ranked because they are not eligible after Jim Tressel lied and got caught regarding free tattoos and gold pants. Punishment aside, the Buckeyes are a top 15 team and can ruin the Big Ten by running the table and making the 2012 Big Ten Champs put an asterisk next to the year/name.
Sparty is struggling after losing to Notre Dame and looking positively bored against Eastern Michigan. The game is in East Lansing, and that has to be worth something. I’ll take Michigan State and the over on fights in the stands. Sparty 21, Ohio State 15.
No. 24 Baylor Bears at No. 7 West Virginia Mountaineers: 11 a.m. on F/X
This is the game of the day as far as offense goes, and I won’t be surprised if there are more points in the first quarter than there are in the entire Ohio State/ Michigan State game — and I just mean from one team. Last week both squads showed the ability to score at will and the inability to stop the other team (47-42 Baylor over Lousiana-Monroe, 31-21 Burning Couches over Maryland).
I’ll give the nod to the home team, as the crowd that might otherwise be less-than-thrilled (Baylor at noon eastern? Come on.) will be fired up for the West Virginia’s first-ever Big 12 conference game. Mountaineers 41, Bears 33.
Arkansas Razorbacks at Texas A&M Aggies: Noon on SEC Network
Anyone who thought the Aggies would be two touchdown favorites over unranked Arkansas at the beginning of the season raise your hand. Okay, now everyone else punch that person because they are lying. John L. Smith is Mr. Magoo-ing his way through the season and his team is a mirror image of that. As my die-hard, life-long Arkansas buddy said, “No way we win this game. Ags 49, Back 24.”
Look what you’ve done, Bob Petrino? By doing this, you have made the Aggies relevant and ruined my friend’s Saturday afternoons. Look at what you've done.
Wisconsin Badgers at No. 20 Nebraska Cornhuskers: 7 p.m. on ABC
I’ve been to night games at Nebraska and it’s loud: loud enough to impress Kenny Vaccaro. And the fans are so nice; I mean, nice to the point it’s unsettling because it is so unfamiliar. Except Bo Pelini, who is as nice as a honey badger. This exchange with Taylor Martinez is lovely. What a peach he must be.
What were we talking about? Oh, Big Ten football. Too many issues for Wisconsin and Big Red is excellent at home. Huskers 30, Badgers 24.
Worst Game of the Week
No. 2 Oregon Ducks at Washington State Cougars: 9:30 p.m. on ESPN2
This is going to be a blood bath. The Ducks seem to have a defense to go along with D’Anthony Thomas and those uniforms, while Washington State has… Hmmm… There is the 4th annual Mutt Strutt that morning and the Gypsy Dawgs jazz concert at 7:30 p.m. in Pullman, so that's something. Yay!
No. 15 Michigan Wolverines 6, No. 17 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 13
Why it was included: Top 20 match up, national game.
Prediction: Ignore common sense and go with Maize, Brian Kelly is mean, Irish are done, Michigan 31, Notre Dame 23.
Reality: Ignored common sense and lost again, Brian Kelly is mean, Irish are far from done.
I just can’t be this wrong all the time. I mean, I can’t. Right? The Irish totally shut down Shoe Lace and the Wolverines, forcing six turnovers and holding them to no touchdowns. Is Notre Dame good, or is the Big Ten bad? Somebody help me figure this out, please.
No. 13 Kansas State Wildcats 24, No. 5 oklahoma sooners 19
Why it was included: Top 15 match up, hate oklahoma and enjoy watching them lose.
Prediction: Again, hate oklahoma, bad chemistry, bad sooner lines, Collin Klein has a good game, Wildcats 31, ou 20.
Reality: Hate. Them. Bad chemistry, bad sooner lines, Collin Klein had a good game.
I’ll chalk that up as a win, although I didn’t get the score exactly right. I said last week that ou’s O-line was suspect and it proved true as K State turned the game by sacking Landry Jones and forcing a fumble that was returned for a touchdown, giving the Wildcats life and the lead (7-3) early in the second quarter.
Jones took the snap on the 8-yard line, backpedaled to the 5 and was sacked from behind on the one when he fumbled. Sound confusing? The video is just as confusing.
No. 4 Clemson Tigers 37, No. 10 Florida State Seminoles 49
Why it was included: Top 10 matchup, Game of the Day.
Prediction: FSU unproven, Clemson has played better teams, I am a contrarian, Clemson 29, Noles 24.
Reality: Not sure Clemson has played anyone better (Auburn), FSU is proven, I am wrong.
For three quarters I looked like a genius, but as is usually the case, it fell apart on me. A fumble and two missed field goals in the first half led to a 28-14 deficit for FSU early in the third, but they roared back with 35 second-half points and won going away, 49-37. Well done, Seminoles. I am totally buying in now.
Memphis Tigers 14, Duke Blue Devils 38
Why it was included: Quick, name anyone that plays for either school.
Prediction: Should have been the basketball teams playing.
Reality: See above.
In all fairness, I should lay off Duke, who is off to a 3-1 start, their best since 2008. This game should have been Colorado vs. Washington State, but it was so bad I didn’t even realize they were playing.