2018-10-03 17:29

The September is wrapped up and so far we did see that most of the favorites did win their games and only a few really positive or negative surprises did happen.

My positive suprising teams are so far:
Syracuse Orange, which did really play well so far and seem to be in for a great season. Starting 4-1, including almost an upset over Clemson.
West Virginia Mountaineers, which seemed to be on top of their game right now, having 4-0, and might even challenge Oklahoma for the BIG12 title.
North Texas Mean Green, who did 4-0, including a win over Arkansas, and did lose now their 1st game against LT by 1 point. They could win the division or even the conference this season.
Buffalo Bulls, starting 4-0, including wins over Rutgers and Temple, and lost now their 1st game, against Army. Also in the mix for the division or conference.
Hawai'i Rainbow Warriors, with a record of 5-1 (they played in week zero) and with already 2 wins more than last season. Not sure they will play for the division title, but for sure not for last place neither.
Arizona State Sun Devils, who did play tough and hard in every game, having only 3-2, but lost against Washington and San Diego State. For me in the mix for the division title at least.
Kentucky Wildcats, starting 5-0 and are in the mix for the SEC East, even if I think they will not make it against Georgia.
LSU Tigers, starting also 5-0 and who do play very good. Not sure they can really challenge Alabama, but we will see.

My negative surprising teams are so far:
Florida State Seminoles, starting 3-2, but do look so far not as they did the past few years, except maybe last season. This teams needs some serious upgrade to challenge Clemson. Will not happen this season I guess.
Iowa State Cyclones, which did win so far only 1 game, now 1-3 in record and look like a team taking 2 steps back after a great step forward last season. Hopefully they find their way at some point.
Nebraska Cornhuskers, staring 0-4, which is for sure not the kind of start everyone wanted with the new coach. By far the worst start since ages. I think they will get into gear at some point, but this season is a mess.
Florida Atlantic Owls, being not that hyped as last season and who did play so far only 2-3, losing against ranked teams is maybe OK, but against MTSU is not. Still I guess they will rebound.
Eastern Michigan Eagles, starting with 2 wins, one against Purdue, and lost now 3 in a row, having now 2-3. I had some high expectations for that team after last seasons success, but I guess they will not play for the division title.
Colorado State Rams, starting 1-4, including a loss to Illinois State (FCS). I guess they will rebound at some point, while they did play some good teams so far, but I'm not sure the coach will survive this much longer.
UCLA Bruins, now at 0-4, under new coach, which is supposed to lift them on the next level and not put them into the pit. No sign of becoming better right now.
Arkansas Razorbacks, which are now 1-4, and everyone is hoping for a lighting strike or something to end the misery. They lost against Colorado State and North Texas. It looks like the team gets better and they might level that out, but so far ... a mayor mess.
Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns, now at 1-3, but what hurts most is the loss against Coastal Carolina. I think they will rebound, likely quickly.

I selected these 3 games as the BLOCK OF GRANITE GAMES FOR WEEK 5

Sat. Sep. 29
#4 Ohio State @ #9 Penn State
Great game and at the end did Penn State just broke down and allowed 14 unanswered points to have that game taken away from them, at home.
Ohio State did present themselves as favorite to win the conference and as long as they have that kind of spirit, which they showed in the 4th quarter, I doubt any team will take that away from them.
For Penn State this was a major loss, now being basically 2 games behind Ohio State in the division race and they have to hope for some Ohio State losses in the future to get back into the driving seat.
#4 Ohio State 27 - #9 Penn State 26 -> Jacks TOP GAMES Score: 12-7

Sat. Sep. 29
#7 Stanford @ #8 Notre Dame
Oh man, my biggest wrong pick this weekend.
Stanford was unable to score often enough and Notre Dame did win at home a big game for themselves.
They still have some challenging games, but this one was so far they toughest.
I'm still not convinced they are playoff caliber in terms of strength, but if they win all remaining games, they will likely get a spot.
Stanford must now concentrate on the PAC12, if they still want to get further.
I'm pretty sure a 1-loss PAC12 champ will not make it, right now, but if they do not win the PAC12, they will for sure never make it further, so ...
#7 Stanford 17 - #8 Notre Dame 38 -> Jacks TOP GAMES Score: 12-8

Sat. Sep. 29
#12 West Virginia @ #25 Texas Tech
Texas Tech did try a late comeback, but failed against a good playing defense.
West Virginia likely needs still to get better on that side of the ball if they really want to challenge Texas and Oklahoma.
Texas Tech seems to play better than last season, but it was not enough to get the team higher in the rankings.
#12 West Virginia 42 - #25 Texas Tech 34 -> Jacks TOP GAMES Score: 13-8

Other interesting games:
Sat. Sep. 29
#20 BYU @ #11 Washington
Washington did play great and did not allow BYU to score until the 4th quarter, when the Cougars are already trailing 35-0.
Huskies won 35-7 and did for now end the talk about BYUs playoff chances.
Jacks interesting games Score: 14-3

Sat. Sep. 29
#19 Oregon @ #24 California
Oregon had a great lead already at the half and managed to preserve that until the end.
Cal did look OK, but far from becoming a contender inside the PAC12 North.
Oregon looked with that 42-24 win like they can play spoiler in some games and might even make one of two contenders miss their season goals.
Jacks interesting games Score: 15-3

Sat. Sep. 29
Florida @ #23 Mississippi State
Very close game, but at the end did the old MSU coach win against the new MSU coach 13-7.
I think both teams need some more adjustments, with Florida likely faster and easier to bring on top level, having those resources.
Jacks interesting games Score: 16-3

Some other interesting results of week 5:
Tulane won against Memphis 40-24. Memphis now 0-2 inside the conference.
UCF won against Pitt, 45-14, which gives them a bit more prestige for a playoff spot, if they keep on winning.
Army won against Buffalo 42-13. The Bulls lost their first game of the season.
Ball State won against Kent State 52-24. Both teams are expected to be at the bottom of their divisions.
Purdue did beat Nebraska 42-28 on Huskers field. Bad start for the Huskers now at 0-4.
Florida State won against Louisville 28-24. Looks like the Cardinals are not finding any answers for their lost star QB.
Kentucky won against South Carolina 24-10 and are now 5-0. According to ESPN, the best start since 1977.
Transition team Liberty did win against New Mexico 52-43.
Middle Tennessee won against Florida Atlantic 25-24. The Lane Train got some bumps this season.
Louisiana Tech did beat North Texas 29-27, which give UNT their first loss. This could decide the division this season.

Week 6 will start soon and there are still a lot of football games left to play.
Some think that only 9 teams are left for a realistic chance getting into the playoffs, but I think it's much more.
Because you can think what you want, but only on the last gameday the real power of every team can be determined and therefore only then it is possible to find the best 4 fitting teams.
Until then, it is all speculations and maybe wish talk.

Sure, the experience of the last few seasons did show that no 2-loss team did enter the playoffs and you could argue that if a team get this 2nd loss, it is out, but that does not include the possible situation that too many team do suffer a 2nd loss over the season.
There is always a first time.

Maybe this year, maybe later.

Nice games this week and some classic ones.

I selected this 3 games as the BLOCK OF GRANITE GAMES FOR WEEK 6

Sat, Oct. 6
#19 Texas vs. #7 Oklahoma
The classic Red River Rivalry is on again and of cause again on a neutral site in Dallas.
Oklahoma is riding a 2-game-winning-streak and is this yar favored by 8.0 points to win the game.
Overall is Texas 15 wins ahead.
It's no surprise the Sooners are favored, since Texas did stumble at the start of the season and did so far recover by winning 4 straight.
They lost against Maryland (3-1), won barely against Tulsa (1-3) and won also barely against Kansas State (2-3).
They are only ranked that high, because they did beat USC and TCU.
The perfect Oklahoma is maybe not so perfect as you might think.
They did almost stumble against Army (3-2) and won in OT and won only by 10 against Iowa State (1-3).
Not THAT good, but at the end all wins, sure.
Both teams will not surrender, for sure, since this is basically the most important game for both teams for the whole season.
It could be even the case that the fans would be satisfied with any result of the season as long as their team did beat THAT OTHER team.
So, will Texas go down?
Likely, since they are not on full strength and speed yet.
I think next season could become interesting, but right now, Oklahoma has the advantage in players.
But of cause this can be equalized with good play calling and maybe some luck.
Unfortunately the Sooners do have a playmaker at the helm in Kyle Murray, while Texas QB Sam Ehlinger does play well, but lacks the support Murray has at Oklahoma.
Therefore the main question is, whether Texas can control and stop Murray.
My guess here is, they can't do it enough.
I stick with Vegas and I guess Oklahoma will win in a not so close one.
Sooners win.

Sat, Oct. 6
#6 Notre Dame @ #24 Virginia Tech
Another do-or-die-game for Notre Dame and this one could become tricky.
Overall I think is VT not on the same level as Stanford, so VT should lose here, right?
Likely, but there are some other factors to think about.
This is a road game and playing in South Bend or in Blacksburg are two different stories.
It's no wonder Notre Dames line is only -6.0.
The only thing which should make Notre Dame hope for a win, regardless how big it is, is Ian Book, the QB.
He did play very well against Stanford and he should be able to find some spots to throw to in that defense which did allow Old Dominion to win the game.
Can VT overcome that problem, or can they outscore Notre Dame on the other side?
Likely not.
But winning against VT at home was never easy, so this could become a very close game and VT could win it.
Because of Book I'm willing to pick Notre Dame as the winner, but I will put that at the lower end of my confidence picks.
Fighting Irish win.

Sat, Oct. 6
#5 LSU @ #22 Florida
LSU is playing better than any one did expect, except maybe coach O in person.
They are now favored by 2.0 points for that road game, in Florida.
That dream could crash down fast, but for that the Gators have to be better than that low scoring thing they did deliver against Mississippi State.
LSU will be dangerous on both sides of the ball and they will punish Florida for errors.
I could imagine a much bigger margin than the 2.0 points.
I guess nobody really knows, who much the home field advantage will bring the Gators on the plus side.
My guess is, not enough to stop the purple and gold offense from scoring.
Tigers win.

Other interesting games:
Sat, Oct. 6
#13 Kentucky @ Texas A&M
Will Kentuckys luck run out now, or will they continue to surprise?
Playing against A&M at College Station is not easy, in fact it's very hard.
Therefore A&M is favored by 6.0 points and I think it might be more.
Aggies win.

Sat, Oct. 6
Arizona State @ #21 Colorado
The Sun Devils will need to win this to get into the PAC12 South mix and they face off against a good Buffaloes team.
Vegas favors the home team by 2.5 points, I favor the Sun Devils in a close one.
I just like their attitude and how they won and lost so far.
Sun Devils win.

Sat, Oct. 6
#8 Auburn @ Mississippi State
Auburn visits a searching MSU team.
MSU needs to find their way under a new coach and Auburn needs simply the win.
The Tigers are 3.5 points favorites, I guess it will come down to the last drive and a stop or score on that.
But MSU is too confused right now to stop a good coaches Auburn team.
Tigers win.

Don't forget your Pick'em picks.

'Til next time

Rating (1 users):

Tags: Block of Granite

 Share on Facebook  Share on Twitter