Today was the first Saturday of college football—otherwise known as “the last week of scrimmages for title-contenders.” This is the week when all the big boys play weaker teams and waste all of our time. It makes for really unexciting football. Is anyone surprised, for instance, that Oklahoma State would pull out the “W” against Savannha State? No nail-biters in that one. It is, however, a bit shocking that they ran up the score 84-0! I guess after missing the title game last year with a single loss, Oklahoma State feels like it may need some style points for the final reckoning…but I digress. Congrats to Alabama-Michigan and Clemson-Auburn for scheduling games that actually interest fans.
Coming in to today, I really thought that Alabama and LSU would be the two teams to beat this year. I don’t know about that anymore. LSU played an unranked school from a lower tier conference that had a losing record last season. LSU won going away, but it was ugly. They had a whole lot of stupid penalties. They gave up two touchdowns. They had several opportunities in the red zone in which they could not score a touchdown. I liked seeing the Tigers air the ball out with their new quarterback, but the rest of it was ugly. There’s always the temptation for great teams to play down to inferior competition (no offense to my friends from Denton). Perhaps that’s what happened tonight. In any case, LSU did not look like a championship-caliber team in my view. I hope I’m wrong.
The same cannot be said of Alabama’s performance against Michigan. Bama looked tough. They were also very sharp and disciplined. They were facing the number eight team in the country, and they dominated that game from start to finish. It was impressive, and I think they should be ranked number one after that performance. And I say that as one who is not over what happened in last year’s title game and who wants Alabama to get drilled at the first possible opportunity. So that means something.
USC shouldn’t be number one in anyone’s poll. LSU, Alabama, and a number of other teams would wipe up the floor with USC. So don’t believe the hype.
More next week when hopefully there will be more to talk about.
P.S. In case you missed it, the play of the day comes from Ohio State’s Devin Smith, who had an amazing one-handed reception for a touchdown. See below.