As we inch closer to all the bowl games week to week, there is still quite a bit up in the air. It is looking more and more like we are looking at a National Championship featuring (#1) Alabama vs. (#2) Ohio State. Even though that is the way things appear on the surface right now, anything can happen. There is a lot of football left to play.
Last night ESPN featured an excellent game between Rutgers and Connecticut with the Scarlet Knights barely knocking off the Huskies. It took a while for Jordan Todman to get going but eventually when he did the Huskies got rolling. Freshman quarterback Chas Dodd showed flashes of brilliance and had several throws that were right on the money as he passed for 322 yards. He's definitely a prospect worth keeping an eye on for the next couple years. At the end, Rutgers closed it out with a 34-yard field goal kicked by San San Te as the Scarlet Knights came out on top 27-24.
Here is a look at some of the other games that have happened throughout the week:
Tuesday, October 5th: Troy 42, Middle Tennessee 13.
Wednesday, Ocober 6th: UCF 42, UAB 7.
Thursday, October 7th: Nebraska 48, Kansas State 13.
Friday, October 8th: Oklahoma State 54, Louisiana-Lafayette 28.
After the jump, I'll highlight some of the games of the week.
#1 Alabama @ #19 South Carolina
South Carolina may be the last team on Alabama's schedule that has a shot at shaking things up by upsetting the Crimson Tide. It's expected that Alabama will try and control the tempo of the game on the ground with their two star-studded running backs, Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson. However, South Carolina has a high octane offense and 'Bama's young defense will have their hands full in trying to contain Stephen Garcia and the rest of the Gamecocks offense.
Pre-game prediction: I think this will be a close, hard fought game but 'Bama should pull ahead toward the end of the 3rd Quarter and eventually make it a multiple score game to clip the Gamecocks wings. Score: Alabama 33, South Carolina 27.
#11 Arkansas @ Texas A & M
Although Arkansas is heavily favored in this one, it should be quite an exciting game. This one will feature two very highly regarded quarterbacks in Ryan Mallett who struggled a bit last week and Jerrod Johnson who as also had his fair share of struggles as of late. The game will be played at a nuetral location so the Aggies won't have the luxury of the crowd noise to go against the Razorbacks.
Pre-game prediction: This game will come down to which quarterback has the better game. Whoever is able to minimize the mistakes should come out with the W. I believe that Ryan Mallett will meet the expectations held high by everyone and prevail in this game. Score: Arkansas 28, Texas A & M 17.
#17 Michigan State @ #18 Michigan
Denard Robinson, on the surface, may seem like too much for most defenses to handle. However, Michigan State has a special linebacker by the name of Greg Jones that may be the kryptanite to slow the speedster quarterback for the Wolverines. The Spartans have a very talented quarterback as well in Kirk Cousins. This has always been a great matchup since the two teams first met and played one and other. This could very well be the game of the week. These two teams matchup very well on paper and it should be quite the barn burner.
Pre-game prediction: It's imperative for the Spartans to contain Robinson. It may seem like mission impossible for Michigan State, especially considering that they are on the road but I certainly won't put anything past them. However, my instinct tells me that Michigan (at home) will be too much. Score: Michigan 34, Michigan State 31.
Oregon State @ #9 Arizona
Oregon State recently fell out of the top 25 recently but don't let that fool you. They played very well last week and will look to feed off that momentum. Nick Foles and the rest of the Wildcat Offense should match point for point. The Wildcats are a very well-coached team. It will be up to the Arizona Defense to win this one by shutting down Katz and the Rodgers brothers (Jaquizz and James).
Pre-game prediction: This will be a very close game but in the end, I have to go with the better coached team. Score: Arizona 24, Oregon State 20.
#12 LSU @ #14 Florida
As much as I'd like to think this game will be close, I just can't convince myself that it will be. Florida will be without quarterback John Brantley and Running Back Jeff Demps. LSU has a great ground game led by Stevan Ridley. Quarterback Jordan Jefferson will have to play a much smarter game this week if he wants to overcome a very athletic Florida defense.
Pre-game prediction: With all of the injuries, I think it will just be too much for the Gators to overcome. The Tigers simply over-match the Gators in this one. I don't think that the Gators will be springing any sort of upset in this one. Score: LSU 30, Florida 17.
#23 Florida State @ #13 Miami
It's been a while since Jacory Harris has had a breakout game... and I think it will be a little bit longer until he does because Florida State has a very talented and solid defense. Florida State's running game is the best it's been in a long while and this may be the game that Florida State's Quarterback, Christian Ponder shows his true colors. This will be a very closed watched game as there ar a ton of prospects. Which quarterback will assert themselves more?
Pre-game prediction: This will be a close one but I am going to go with Miami on this one. The defense has been getting stronger and there is no shortage of talent on the offensive side of the ball. Score: Miami 35, Florida State 27.
Here is the rest of the schedule: