Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | December 1, 2012

Pigskin follies: NCAA football, week 14 (The Last Hurrah)

The Bummer Fact this weekend is that Notre Dame is done for the regular season and won’t be playing.  Alabama and Georgia duke it out on Saturday to determine which team will dismantle the Arsh in the BCS Championship game – which savor, incidentally, because you won’t be seeing another one under the BCS system.

It’s a weekend of endings.  But Tulsa has one more go hosting Central Florida on Saturday morning for the C-USA title.  Both come in 9-3, 7-1 conference.  Tulsa lost a very stupid game last week to the worthless SMU Mustangs, who came to play, unlike the Golden Hurricane bench, which came to put in the time.  UCF’s losses this season were (relatively) tight ones to Ohio State, Missouri, and Tulsa.  The Knights are not to be sneezed at, even for the team that beat Notre Dame 28-27 on 30 October 2010.  TU will have its work cut out for it.  A win has the potential of putting Tulsa in the Liberty Bowl.  A loss will mean one of four booger bowls with which C-USA is affiliated this year, which at least are in great places like Dallas and St. Petersburg.

Oklahoma, BCS #11, will be at TCU on Saturday, and if you’re into Big 12 drama, Saturday’s the day for you.  If Texas can beat #6 Kansas State and Oklahoma beats TCU, there’s a possibility of OU sharing the Big 12 title.  Frankly, the Sooners don’t deserve that this year.  But I wouldn’t mind seeing Texas beat K-State.  Oklahoma is unquestionably the better team in the TCU match-up, but the Horned Frogs beat Texas last week in Austin.  So it’s another exciting Big 12 finish (minus the actual championship game this year), and the computers could get a work-out depending on the outcomes tomorrow.

On the other hand, if K-State wins over the Longhorns, the Big 12 champ will be the winningest and best team in the conference, which would put the Big 12 in company with the SEC, as opposed to the weird stuff going on with division leaders in some of those other conferences.

#23 Oklahoma State will be at Baylor, and should also be watching its six.  I do expect the Cowboys to be pumped and hungry, as always.  I really like how they keep playing football until the game’s actually over.  That just resonates with me.  In any case, they’re the better team at this point in the season, and the oddsdudes have them giving 5.

The Game (Army-Navy) will be on the 8th.  Meanwhile, Virginia Tech, closing the season at 6-6 last week, will be waiting for a bowl bid while Florida State heads to Georgia Tech for Saturday’s ACC title game.  In the always hilarious Coastal Division, 8-4 North Carolina is ineligible and 7-5 Miami has imposed a bowl ban on itself for the second year, so 6-6 Georgia Tech is carrying the division torch.  ‘Noles give 14.

Nevada hosts #20 Boise State, and we went over the historical excitement of that match-up last week.  Weather will be a balmy 57 with showers at game time in Reno.  If the Broncos win, they’ll share the Mountain West title with Fresno State and San Diego State.  If they don’t win, no title honors.  Nevada, 7-4, is bowl-eligible already, but would obviously love a win.  The two teams are unlikely to play much when Boise State joins the Big East next year.  So Saturday’s game will be a form of farewell.

Around the top 10, the Alabama-Georgia game is clearly the game of the week in terms of being a difference-maker.  Should be pretty good football too.  The Tide isn’t invulnerable; we know that.  We here at the TOC Football Commentary Service give ‘Bama the edge in this one, flowing with an oddsquad that has them giving 7.  We deem either SEC team well capable of beating Notre Dame to a pulp.  But the magic is with South Bend this year, and first, the ‘Tide and the ‘Dogs have to get through tomorrow.

#4 Florida and #5 Oregon are on the sidelines this week, as other teams play for their conferences’ titles.  Tonight we’ll see #8 Stanford host #16 UCLA in the Pac-12 championship game – and it’s guaranteed to be raining.  Upper 50-ish at game time.  The Heathered Aubergine is favored by 9.  Go Bruins!

LSU should be pretty locked in at #7, with a good bowl game to look forward to.  The only thing that might disturb Texas A&M at #9, or South Carolina at #10, is a thumping win by UCLA.  Not expecting that.

In the other ranks of the FBS, we are pleased to report that Louisville slew Rutgers 20-17 last night, in New Jersey.  Heh.  The Cardinals cement the Big East, for whatever good that does these days.

#12 Nebraska will be at Wisconsin, representing the Legends Division in the Big Ten championship game.  The Leaders Division has the sickness going around this year:  two teams above Wisconsin – 12-0 Ohio State and 8-4 Penn State – who are ineligible due to being bad.  So a 7-5 Wisconsin will try to keep the trophy out of Husker hands.  Nebraska’s parsimonious fans haven’t bumped the give above 3.  We predict Huskers will cover.

#21 Northern Illinois and #17 Kent State have just started the Mid-Atlantic Conference championship game.  The Golden Flashes just scored.  West Virginia will host unfortunate Kansas on Saturday, in a Big 12 sideshow, and much as we love the 6-5 Mountaineers, we’d enjoy seeing the 1-10 Jayhawks bump it up to 2-10.  It’s kind of annoying for anybody to be that pathetic.  Get yourselves a coach, guys.

In the pointless filler games category, we would be remiss not to mention #15 Oregon State hosting Nicholls, one of our favorite from among the FCS teams that regularly show up to be a punching bag for a top 25 FBS team late in the season.  The cellar-dwelling Colonels are 1-9 (0-7 in the FCS Southland Conference), and this will be their first meeting with the Beavers.  Somebody in Corvallis has a sense of humor.

The Sun Belt Conference’s South Alabama Jaguars apparently wanted to take a Hawaii vacation, as they too are participating in an ultimate pointless filler game with the Warriors on the last day of the regular season.  The Jaguars are 2-10 and on the bottom in the rapidly disintegrating Sun Belt.  Hawaii is 2-9 and last in the Mountain West.  Warriors give 6 in this one.  We hope lots of armed forces families will be able to enjoy the evening in Aloha Stadium.

Northern Illinois just tied it up at 10-all with Kent State.  Pac-12 game about to start.  Bowl match-ups start on the 15th.


  1. The TCU QB is very mobil, but his passing ability is limited. The TCU D is thick and formidable. Everyone plays their best OU by 13. This is tempered by the OU D’s un-common ability to make averge QB’s into Superstars.
    Do not under-estimate Baylors ability to light up the Cowboys secondary. This could be a Tight Fit game.
    Good luck to Tulsa, but I don’t think so. Sorry
    I am afraid I will be on the Cardinal sideline in this one. I could do without the replay thing.
    Colorado should hire Tedford. Boise State and San Diego State in the Big East. I guess they will really get to see the country.I think West Virginia will not dominate the Big 12. LOL!!!!!! So much for the ESPN cheerleaders.
    Is it just me or has ESPN quietly erased Craig James from the scene? I bet little Craig Jr. gets a check from his Daddy every week.
    On the other side, the coach at Washington State will build a program and move on to a better job.
    Mangino should be brought back to OU. His players think he is too hard on them. OU could use a dose of that. Stoops should make everyone in the program wear crew cuts until they toughen up.
    Mid 60’s and upper 70’s all the way through next week.

  2. Oh yeah? I’ll see your mid 60s and upper 70s and raise you upper 70s and lower 80s. At least we’ve gotten some rain in the last 72 hours, with more on the way. But no chill. It might as well be Tampa.

    I really should have made this week’s Bummer Fact the fact that Tulsa, OU, and OSU are all playing in the same time slot. Even with a remote, it’s hard to form a judgment of the quality of play. Tulsa is doing its level best to avoid keeping the ball, and yet somehow is up 7-0 on UCF. Baylor appears to have sneaked around the Cowboys for a 10-3 advantage. Workmanlike TD from OU a few minutes ago.

  3. Sooners “win,” in their usual lackdaisical fashion.

    TU and UCF in an OT slog. Tulsa’s first TD was reversed, but Singleton just sailed over top to seal the deal. (Unless they reverse this one too.)

    Looks like they won’t. Tulsa, C-USA champ 2012!

    OSU down by 14 to Baylor with 1 and change left. Phooey.

    • Big time congrats to Tulsa. Yes OU artfully kept another team in the game.
      No happiness in Stillwater. We were at a long time customers home today. Everyone in Orange from head to toe. It was pretty quiet by the time we finished.
      I can’t pull for Texas tonight so that OU can back into an undeserved title. Sharing the title is garbage also.
      A word about Maryland football if you please. Ralph was fired after winning 9 games and going to a bowl. The AD and the money people said they needed to get to the next level. Maryland football is at the next level.
      What is rain by the way?????? We have a sprinkler and irrigation division. We love drought, but we also do drainage systems in case it rains. Do you think the Feds could put those two thoughts together for less than 100 Billion??
      Happy weekend to you and yours!!!!!!

  4. The Alabama running game looks like Germany rolling through France.

    • gonna be a lot of Alabama’s OL crew getting picked early in the NFL draft

  5. It is early AM here in SoonerLand. I just completed one of my great pleasures in life: Perusing the sports page of The Austin American Statesman after another shorthorn loss. Like a warm spring rain or feeling the fog drift over one’s skin driving over the Golden Gate during warm weather. I can’t wait for the morning after the Texas/LSU Cotton Bowl.

    • Oh well. How do you get North Illinois on a cap anyway. Congrats to NI on the stunning,nail biting,exciting win over Kent State. I noticed they rolled over Kansas by 7. Looks like a tight fit for Florida State.

  6. Not sure if you will look here again BUT: Tennessee officials met with Mike Gundy at his home a few days ago. He met with Arkansas with in a few days of that meeting. This is not speculation.
    The last contract negotiations between AD Holder and Gundy’s agent did not go well.
    Holder is a difficult gentleman and T. Boone really thinks and expects to get a lot imput for 140 million. Think Jerry Jones as General Manager of the Dallas situation. Neither one knows anything about football, but by golly they have money and thats good enough.
    If someone offers Mike 4 million, he is gone. The powers at be up there actually think it is just a matter of plugging another guy in as coach who will suck up.

  7. Will Florida State try for a 100. That is the question in these parts.

  8. I’m discouraged as heck to hear about the courting of Gundy, but not surprised, I guess. Tennessee could sure use him. And of course, he could keep wearing orange (albeit a different hue).

    Hey, Tulsa’s going to the Liberty Bowl, and gets another shot at Iowa State, to boot! More on all this in a later post. Some tasty morsels coming up in bowl season. I don’t see Notre Dame having any chance with the Tide, however.

    Guess we missed it here, but when did the Redskins get their mojo back? They didn’t look half bad last night. The Giants did look more than half bad — not to take anything away from the ‘Skins.

    Cowboys at least fended off the final-minutes challenge from the Iggles on Sunday.

    And the Rams topped San Fran in OT! — after an uncharacteristic whiff by the Niners’ kicker.

  9. Oh, and I’m not so sure the ‘Noles can hang that much on Northern Illinois. Granted, the MAC and all, but FSU hasn’t been that dominating. The ACC has just sucked eggs this year. FSU “survived” a 6-6 GA Tech rather than steamrolling them.

    At least the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, with Oregon and K-State, ought to be a humdinger.

    • Agreed. Arkansas hired someone else. Sources here say he turned them down, but you know how that game goes. I didn’t take the job either.
      Tennessee is in a bad place on the talent and win cycle. The last time they were good was the mid 90’s. LSU/Alabama/Auburn and South Carolina were all weak. It would take a really good coach 3 years just to build talent to win 7 games. The Volunteers are in worse shape than OU in the late 90’s.
      RG III is pretty special, but he is undersized. Great arm strength and speed but he could end up in the hospital running around like that.
      Fresno transfer receiver Saunders busted with pot early Sunday AM.
      Pulling for Tulsa.

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