College Football

Impressed- Depressed- Neutral- Week 11 of college football

Sorry this is so late—there were computer problems at both ends. Hope this version of “Impressed, Depressed, Neutral- Week 11 of college football” isn’t too after-the-fact…

Penn State

If you didn’t see Penn State’s 35-14 roughing up of Wisconsin, then you missed one of the best first-half performances from a college football team this season. Whilst the offense, led by Michael Robinson, was putting up 21 points, the defense held Wisconsin’s Heisman RB candidate to -14 yards rushing. Don’t look now- but no-one’s going to like playing JoePa’s army come Bowl time.


This match-up against the 1st and 2nd ranked defenses in the country was meant to be one of two things: 1) The closest game of all time or 2) A Va Tech blowout, led by Tech QB Marcus Vick. Unfortunately for Hokies fans, it was the dreaded 3) a 27-7 victory by Miami. What was so impressive about the `Canes was its defense, who ran roughshod over Tech QB Marcus Vick. They turned Vick’s four lost fumbles and two interceptions into 17 points. Ouch.


After Stanford got close to UCLA last week, some thought that Southern Cal might have a close game. 51-21 later, the `some’ were proved wrong- very, very wrong. And with the UCLA debacle in Arizona, the UCLA game just isn’t as appealing, is it?


The Wildcats shocked the nation by dusting UCLA 52-14 in one of the most dominant performances Tuscon has seen for years. And it wasn’t as though QB Drew Olsen gave up any interceptions, either. The Arizona defense just closed down Maurice Drew to 41 yards rushing, and QB Willie Tuitama threw for 204 yards and 2 TDs. But what really helped UA was their rushing: both their biggest rushers, Mike Bell and Gilbert Harris had over 100 yards rushing and a touchdown. If Mike Stoops can keep this going, and the recruiting is as good as people say it is, then the Pac-10 might have a problem.

Notre Dame

After their 41-21 destruction of Tennessee (which included 20 fourth quarter points), it was obvious that the Irish are one of the best two loss teams in the country (the other one being Auburn). Brady Quinn’s numbers were again impressive (20/33, 295 yards, 3 TD)- even if the defense’s weren’t (especially during the third quarter, when they helped the Irish to blow an 18 point lead).

NC State

This is the win that quite possibly saved Chuck Amato’s job- but put paid to Bobby Bowden’s National Championship hopes with a 20-15 victory. The defense was great, picking off FSU QB Drew Weatherford 3 times. But FSU’s got good news- they’re going where NC State isn’t: the ACC Championship game.

West Virginia

Slowly but surely, the Moutaineers are beginning to show that there is a good team in the Big East this year. By trouncing UConn 45-13 and going to 7-1 (now it’s actually 8-1 after they hammered Cincinnati on the Wednesday of week 12), the team proves on both sides of the ball, that they are good enough not to be laughed at when they hit a BCS game.

North Carolina

Upsetting Boston College 16-14 is a pretty darned good scalp- but not much of a surprise considering their near-upset of Miami the week before. Considering the Tar Heels have the hardest schedule in college football, a 4-4 record thus far ain’t bad.



So, they beat Baylor 62-0 and Vince Young showed he could pass. So, are Texas going to actually play any GOOD teams in the Big 12? Sure, if they run the table they’ll get to the National Championship, but are they really that good? I’m not so sure.


You can’t actually be depressed if you’re up 14-0 at half time. But I-AA Appalachian State (the second ASU the Tigers have played this season) aren’t exactly Alabama, are they? Wow.


Seems to be the same old story. The offense is awful without Tyrone Prothro, but the defense (two returns for TDs in the 17-0 victory) was good enough to keep the Crimson Tide unbeaten. Should be some game at LSU.


Coming back from 14 points down in the last quarter and then losing in 2 OTs shows how far Jay Cutler and the Commodores have come. But sadly, not far enough.



After their 52-7 shellacking at Arizona, we’d like to take our hat off and have a moment’s silence for the Bruins’ Pac-10 Championship hopes. With Maurice Drew virtually shut out for the game and Drew Olsen looking pretty darned awful, LA’s other team looked as ordinary as, well, most Pac-10 teams have looked this season.

Texas A&M

How awful have Texas A&M been this season? The 5-4 record betrays the fact that the Aggies really haven’t beaten anybody good this season (Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Texas State, SMU, Baylor), and they’ve lost to good teams (Clemson, Colorado, Iowa State, and Texas Tech). And the two games they’ve lost recently? They’ve been outscored 98-31, including Week 11’s 56-17 thrashing by Texas Tech.

Virginia Tech

Keep your stub for this one: it’s not every day that you see Tech’s highly-rated quarterback (Marcus Vick) look terrible, Tech’s unbeatable defense look ordinary (27 points), and Tech’s National Championship hopes go out of the window…all against your hated rival, the Miami Hurricanes.


Going into the clash with Penn State- everyone was talking about how no-one would be able to stop Brian Calhoun. Cal-who? The Nittany Lions kept Calhoun to under 50 yards and looked dominant, sending Barry Alvarez home crying 35-14. It’s a long drive back to Madison, isn’t it?


How could this team possibly get worse after the 41-21 destruction in South Bend? By losing to Vanderbilt and Memphis, that’s how. And how do you know a team’s playing dreadfully (apart from the 3-5 record), because the games against Vanderbilt and Memphis are now MUST-wins for Phillip Fulmer’s bowl-eligibility chances. Quite a fall for the preseason #3 in the nation, eh?

Florida State

The only good thing about the Seminoles getting upset by North Carolina State was the fact that Boston College was upset by the Wolfpack’s neighbors on Tobacco Road, North Carolina, meaning that the Noles play in the ACC’s inaugural championship game. Sure, Drew Weatherford’s one of the most talented freshman QBs that Tallahassee has seen for a very long time, but if he’s throwing 3 INTs a game, then FSU aren’t going to run the table for a while, are they?

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