It’s “Championship Saturday”, the day where college football conference championships are played and bowl match-ups are determined. Hooray! Another day created to cash checks but we’re not complaining. After all, the SEC started the trend and the rest of college football followed suit. It’s our time to shine and orange and blue shine much better than crimson and white.
So let’s chat it up a little bit…
First up is the reaction to the Cam Newton ineligible/eligible news from the week. Wow, we wonder if the NCAA anticipated the backlash. I’ve been laughing all week. Good or bad, the hate is now directed at the NCAA and rightfully so. It’s their system, their rules, and their payday.
Thoughts on the games today:
- Frank Beamer takes his team into the Queen City to play the emerging Seminoles. The Hokies had a typical VT season; they started slow with disappointing performances then pulled it together to be the favored champion. The Seminoles showed tremendous growth during the season and may make it a game. I look for VT to win a close game today, 24 – 21.
- Oklahoma looked liked a #1 team against Oklahoma State, at least pulling away late in the 4th quarter. Without knowing anything about the irrelevant Cornhuskers I would say Nebraska won’t keep up either. The Sooners still have some connection to history and Nebraska is running to the Big 10/11/12/who cares? Sooners 38, Cornholio’s 17.
- Early this season I was hoping Oregon State would have a decent season and play South Carolina in a bowl game. Oh, the humanity of it all: Beavers vs. Cocks. The fun and joy we would have gotten from that match-up would have lasted us a lifetime. But the Beavers have been pounded (I’m trying awfully hard here) by stiffer competition and just won’t make the cut. The Ducks have one more romp before the National Title game: Ducks 52, Beavers 23.
On to Atlanta… I really could just copy and paste my comments from the earlier game here. This is a scary match-up and deserves the hype. South Carolina could very much be in our seat as the undefeated team looking to play Oregon for it all if it weren’t for their inconsistency.
Seems the Gamecocks have been in trouble when they couldn’t run the ball. The losses to Auburn, Kentucky, and Arkansas all have that in common. Auburn is 2nd in rushing defense in the league behind South Carolina. Yet, it was the Tigers not the Cocks that stopped the run in their first meeting. This is the beauty of Auburn’s “poor” defense.
If South Carolina follows the pattern that Georgia and Alabama have laid down in front of them, they’ll go to the air early and often against Auburn. I like Auburn’s chances in that scenario because QB Stephen Garcia will turn the ball over. Most importantly that game plan keeps RB Marcus Lattimore cold. Running often and early is their best hope. It punishes Auburn’s defense, sets up play action, and limits Garcia’s mistakes.
There is no doubt South Carolina will score points. The big question to me is what does SC have differently today than it did earlier in the season, or is their defense of the caliber of Alabama and LSU? I don’t think it is. South Carolina got Auburn early in the year when they were still sorting things out. If you look at games played since October, only Alabama’s league leading defense made things interesting for the nation and Auburn still managed 28 points in 40 minutes of play.
So of course we’re picking the Tigers today to win another SEC Championship. The game will be a good one. Have plenty of beverages in the fridge. Auburn 38, South Carolina 27.