This will be a rough-and-ready update for the weekend, as the just-out “Uranium jerky” post has monopolized all of the time this week here at the TOC Football Commentary Service. We expect to be back in business on a normal basis next week – and not a moment too soon, given the treats in store for us down the road.
We regret to report that Virginia Tech’s exhausted defense succumbed to West Virginia, pride of the Big 12, 33-10 on Thursday night. That’s pretty much what happens when one team’s possession time outstrips the other’s nearly 2 to 1.
We’re equally sorry observe that Nevada went down to Air Force 48-20 on Friday night. (Though happy for Air Force, of course.) Possession time was even more lopsided in that one. Great learning experiences for our Inner Circle, however.
In an extremely weird turn of events, the UTEP Miners prevailed over Boise State in their Friday night game. Sure, the game was played in El Paso, but homefield advantage isn’t that big an edge.
We commiserate again with Pittsburgh Steeler fans, on the loss to Cleveland.
The University of Tulsa Golden Hurricane, which beat Notre Dame 28-27 on 30 October 2010, comes off an FCS victory to take on #16 Ole Miss, with the Rebels giving only 21.
#6 Oklahoma hosts Kansas State on Saturday, and we’re shaking the totem at this one like crazy. Sooners are favored by 13.5. Hah.
New #9 Oklahoma State has the week off.
Navy is a 16-5-point dog at East Carolina.
Army is off this weekend.
Air Force beat Nevada Friday night, as mentioned in the intro.
Virginia Tech lost to West Virginia, which curiously still leaves the Hokies atop the ACC Coastal Division. They’ll be back on the field on 1 October at North Carolina.
LSU is giving 31 points hosting New Mexico.
TCU heads across the massive freeway parking lot to SMU to fight their Storied Rivalry for the Iron Skillet. We always watch this one with interest to see who’s most motivated to take the world’s most dueled-over kitchen implement home. The oddsquad wisely has the Horned Frogs giving no more than 2.5.
Toledo takes an out-of-conference flyer at San Diego State, where the Rockets – who held Ohio State to 77 points last week – are giving 3.
Wyoming has a big outing at #19 BYU, with the Cougars favored by 21.5.
#1 Georgia shotguns 45 hosting Kent State (“Golden Flashes” – what an entertaining month this is turning out to be).
#2 Alabama (-40.5) hosts Vanderbilt.
#3 Ohio State gives a measly 19.5 to crummy, offense-deficient Wisconsin, as they snag the marquee slot on ABC Saturday evening.
#4 Michigan gives even less – 17 – to visiting Maryland.
#5 Clemson is favored (-7.5) at non-dismissible Wake Forest.
#7 USC, at Oregon State, is laying 6. Somebody seems to lack faith here. Surely it’s not Trojan boosters.
New #8 Kentucky (-27) hosts Northern Illinois.
#10 Arkansas heads to AT&T in Arlington to take on Texas A&M in their Storied Rivalry for the Southwest Classic Trophy. They’re pretty excited about the trophy at Arkansas.
In what seems like a colossal absence of mind, the line has the #10 Hawgs giving only 2.5 to the Aggie squad that lost to App State two weeks ago and looked lackluster topping Miami (Da U) last week. Well. Gig ’em anyway.
Best of the rest
Though it seems unlikely, any of Wisconsin, Maryland, Wake, Kansas State, or Oregon State could make its match the game of the week by beating a Top 10 opponent. Given the generally legitimate assessment of overmatch in these games, we can’t really pre-identify a game of the week. So that’s our story and we’re sticking to it.
The Storied Rivalry of #20 Florida and #11 Tennessee will unfold once again in Knoxville as the teams meet with both in the Top 25. They’re performing respectably this year, but it’s unlikely the outcome of this great rivalry game will affect the CFPBXYZ# down the road, so we’re awarding it rivalry points and suggesting you tune in to watch the Vols donate 10.5.
#22 Texas will be at Texas Tech to play for the Chancellor’s Spurs, a lovable-looking trophy that spends most of its life under Plexiglass. We are gratified to be able to provide so much helpful detail on the provenance of the Wikipedia image.
In this least-Storied of the Texas rivalries, Longhorns are favored by 7.
Houston (-17.5) hosts Rice in the Storied Rivalry for the Bayou Bucket. The bucket is a bronzed thing perched on a trophy base, so it’s not quite as based as the Iron Skillet (or the Old Oaken Bucket, for that matter, which you can bet we’ll get to with a multimedia extravaganza later this year).
Louisiana sees its in-state Louisiana/U-LA-LA (ULL) And All Permutations Thereof, Sanctioned or Otherwise, vs Louisiana-Monroe (ULM), rivalry Saturday night in Monroe. The visiting Ragin’ Cajuns are giving 9.5 to the Warhawks in this Storied Rivalry. In an exciting development, we see that the Lafayette Daily Advertiser is offering a report on why no one can find the obscurely-footnoted “Wooden Boot” trophy (which we have snooped around for in the past), and no one seems to have a photo of it either, other than apparently this one (and we admit, we’d try to forget it happened too. It looks an awful lot like a farewell plaque from a military unit or other government agency).
Always good to have the scoop on these things.
Florida Atlantic is playing Purdue, which doesn’t seem to have happened before, so, you know, BOHICA. The Boilermakers are giving 16 in West Lafayette.
#17 Baylor at Iowa State (-2.5; Ames Factor) probably won’t be a total snoozer, and we’d say the same of Stanford at #18 Washington (-13.5), definitely a nightcap for the sleepless if you’re on the East coast.
UMass, now 1-2 with its FCS win, heads to Temple where the Owls are giving a mere 10.
In FCS, McNeese State continues the hunt for a win hosting Div II’s Mississippi College of the Gulf South Conference. We’d love to have more time to unearth the treasures of Mississippi College, which charms us right away by being the alma mater of College Football Hall of Famer Edwin “Goat” Hale, who led the school’s 1921 team. The school played as the Collegians then, but at some point thought better of that and became the Choctaws.
Highs in the 90s Saturday, with very warm evening temps and high humidity for the 7 PM kickoff.
In Div II, Slippery Rock at 3-0 is still #11 and will host PSAC opponent Seton Hill on Saturday.
The 6 PM kickoff will see temps plunging through the 50s as a fall front arrives, though the rain isn’t expected until Sunday.
Central Oklahoma hosts MIAA foe Northwest Missouri on Saturday in the Hall of Fame game, and given NWMSU’s status as #2 in the Div II Coaches Poll, the Bronchos basically have no chance. We’re sure they will extract max benefit from a learning experience, however.
Mid-90s and humidity you can cut with a knife in Edmond for the 2 PM game start.
In Div III, Rose-Hulman (0-3) is participating in the conference-wide week off. Heartland will resume play on 1 October, when RHIT will travel to Anderson.
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy knocked the stuffing out of SUNY-Maritime 48-13 last week, and heads to Kean U. in Union, NJ for an out-of-conference clash on Saturday. Kean, of the New Jersey Athletic Conference (which longtime correspondents will remember we used to follow when Christopher Newport U. joined it), is 1-2, and as likely to give the Mariners a good run as not.
Partly cloudy and around 70 expected for the 1 PM kickoff in Union.
Feature image: Oklahoma State QB #3 Spencer Sanders shoots the gap on the option to run in a second TD in the Cowboys’ 34-17 victory over Arizona State on 17 Sep 2022. ESPN video, YouTube.