Posts Tagged ‘College Football’

College Football Poll Through Nov 1

The four of us (Edwards, Cook, Thompson & Warzecha) who contribute to this blog decided to put together our own College Football poll. We started by each filling out who we think are the top 14 teams. Then we took those results and mashed em together to create the official Illegal Shift College Football Poll.

 

LaMichael James has Oregon #1 in the county.

 

  1. Oregon (4)
  2. Auburn
  3. Alabama +3
  4. TCU
  5. Boise St -2
  6. Nebraska +6
  7. Utah +1
  8. Ohio St +5
  9. Oklahoma +1
  10. Wisconsin -1
  11. Missouri -6
  12. Stanford +1
  13. LSU +1
  14. *Iowa

* Not ranked in previous poll.
+/- How many spots they moved up or down since previous poll.
(x) Number of first place votes.

If you think we’ve messed this whole thing up, then let us know in the comments what your top 14 looks like.

Heisman Candidates Through Nov 1

It's Cam's Heisman to lose

1. Cam Newton – 40

The Cam Newton train just keeps rolling.  Newton pulled a new trick out of his Heisman bag with a touchdown reception along with two passing touchdowns against Ole Miss.  As the stats keep piling up, it will take a major letdown for the Auburn QB to not take the prestigious trophy come December.

2. LaMichael James – 32

If you read this blog, then you already know that we love James.  His stats compare very favorably to Mark Ingram’s Heisman winning numbers from last year.  Unfortunately, he’s up against the ridiculous season of Newton.  But this could definitely help his cause – 239 yards, 3 tds.  Those are James’ stats against USC last Saturday giving him his third 200-yard game of the season.  Unreal.

3. Kellen Moore – 18

In a weird twist, Moore was able to put up the same touchdown combination as Newton.  However, I think we can all agree that it wasn’t quite as exciting.  Moore continues to put up good stats and keep his team in the hunt to bust the BCS.  Unless he starts putting up even bigger stats, Moore will be giving a congratulatory handshake to Newton or James in NYC.

4. Andrew Luck – 16

Luck didn’t have a huge game but against an average Washington team that wasn’t required.  One thing to note though was his rushing yards.  Luck racked up 91 yards and a touchdown on the ground.  His mobility and strong arm have him firmly in the race for the third spot with Moore.  If Stanford wins the Pac-10 and Luck continues to outpace Moore in key passing stats, look for him to own the third spot behind Newton and James, respectively.

5. Denard Robinson – 10

Mr. Robinson makes his return to the top five after a great performance against Penn State.  Unfortunately, Michigan’s defense can’t make the same claim.  Shoelace put up 380 total yards and 4 touchdowns in the loss.  His play continues to keep him in the Heisman conversation and while he probably won’t take him the coveted prize, he will definitely finish the season with his name to several records.
Edwards

  1. Newton
  2. James
  3. Moore
  4. Luck
  5. Robinson

Cook

  1. Newton
  2. James
  3. Moore
  4. Luck
  5. Robinson

Thompson

  1. Newton
  2. James
  3. Luck
  4. Martinez
  5. Moore

Warzecha

  1. Newton
  2. James
  3. Robinson
  4. Moore
  5. Luck

Huge Weekend for Hog Fans

 

Sure, Arkansas’ chances of winning either an SEC or national title are now nothing more than a fading memory. And heck, the Razorbacks aren’t even playing a game in front of their fans on Saturday. Still, this weekend should be of the absolute, utmost importance to Hog fans.

Here’s why

The Razorbacks are still very much in play for their first-ever BCS bowl appearance. That may be hard to believe for some, but it is an absolute fact. Here is the simple scenario that would result in the Hogs recieving their first BCS bid in the infamous system’s 13-year reign over the college football landscape:

  1. Alabama loses this Saturday night in Baton Rouge
  2. Arkansas beats #19 South Carolina and #20 Mississippi State on the road, and #10 LSU in Little Rock over the next 4 weeks*
  3. Auburn beats Alabama the day after Thanksgiving
  4. Auburn beats South Carolina in the SEC Championship Game

Arkansas must win the battle for "The Golden Boot"

It’s honestly that simple, and relatively foreseeable. The above scenario results in Arkansas ending the season with a 10-2 record, good for 2nd place in the SEC West (and, really, the 2nd best record in the whole conference). With Auburn’s then-certain inclusion in the BCS National Championship game, the BCS will, without a doubt, extend an at-large bid to another SEC team. Here’s the group they will be looking at:

  • *Arkansas 10-2 (6-2)
  • *LSU 10-2 (6-2)
  • *Alabama 9-3 (5-3)
  • *South Carolina 9-4 (5-3)

South Carolina, like so many SEC Championship Game losers of the past would be overlooked, and given that Arkansas would have beaten LSU head-to-head in the last game of the season, Arkansas would get the nod over the Tigers. It should also not be overlooked that the BCS brain-trust is smart, and knows that the rabid Razorback fan base would show up in droves for the Hogs’ first ever BCS appearance – especially if they were to get placed in the Sugar Bowl.

So there you have it. While there are several moving parts to this scenario, would any of them, individually, really even cause you to raise both eyebrows? Not me. The two biggest hurdles need to be cleared this weekend, and if they are, this scenario almost begins to look more likely than not.

So, as always, Woo Pig Sooiieee!

And for just a single, painful but necessary weekend…Geaux Tigers!

What If The College Football Season Ended Today (Oct 28) and We Had A Playoff?

BCS - The Playoff Killer

There are a ton of people out there who are completely fed up with the BCS and their system. They don’t want a computer telling them who are the best teams in the nation. They want teams to play it out on the field. So lets take a minute to head off into our own little “Fantasy World” and see what a playoff system would look like today. We’re going to take the top 8 teams from the BCS standings and match em up in a typical tournament style  (1 vs 8, 2 vs 7, 3 vs 6, 4 vs 5).

– Round 1 – – Round 2 – – Championship –
(1) Auburn vs (8) Utah
(4) TCU vs (5) Michigan St
(1) Auburn vs (4) TCU
(1) Auburn vs (2) Oregon
(2) Oregon vs (3) Boise St
(2) Oregon vs (7) Alabama
(3) Boise St vs (6) Missouri

Heisman Candidate LaMichael James Through Week 8

LaMichael James - Heisman Candidate

We are 8 weeks into the College Football season and LaMichael James is the lone running back in the Heisman race. Previous Heisman winner Mark Ingram was discussed as a possible candidate, until the last few weeks. James however has continued to rack up monster stats as he’s moved higher and higher up the board. LaMichael James has been nothing short of impressive this year and very comparable to Ingram’s stats from his Heisman winning season last year. Lets take a second to compare how James’ numbers so far this year stack up against Ingram’s through 8 weeks in 2009.

Through 8 Weeks -GP – Att – Rush Yds – Rush Avg – TD –
Mark Ingran (2009) 8 153 1004 6.6 8
LaMichael James (2010) 6 134 971 7.2 11
Heisman Season and 2010 Projected -GP – Att – Rush Yds – Rush Avg – TD –
Mark Ingram 2009 271 1658 6.1 17
LaMichael James 2010 (Proj) 230 1665 7.2 19

As you can see LaMichael James’ stats at this point of the season are better then Mark Ingram’s were 8 weeks into his Heisman winning season. Even with James playing two less games then Ingram did at this point of the season. So of course James projects to have better numbers in every major statistical category then Ingram did when he won the Heisman Trophy. LaMichael James still has some tough games left on the schedule. Including an away game against USC this weekend. If James can continue his dominance he’ll give Cam Newton a run for his money in the Heisman race this year.

– Jacob –

The Breakdown: Arkansas vs. Vanderbilt

When Arkansas Runs

The Razorbacks still only have the 89th rushing offense in the nation, but based on their improvement in that area over the last three games, that ranking is really not representative of the way Kniles Davis and company are running the ball today. Over the last two weeks, the Hogs have averaged 7.3 yards per carry against the then 23rd ranked Mississippi run defense, 4.9 yards against the then #15 run defense of Auburn. This weekend, facing Vanderbilt’s 92nd ranked rushing defense should mean that the surging Razorback running game should continue its recent breakout. Look for Davis to go over 100 yards for the second straight week in this one.
EDGE: Arkansas

When Arkansas Throws

This is where the Hogs always cash in, and this week will be no different. Arkansas still ranks 2nd nationally, throwing for 352 yards per game this season, and the Commodores have been no more than average against opposing passers, allowing a 58th best 211 yards passing per game so far. Over the past two weeks Vandy has faced Georgia’s #31 passing offense and Georgia’s #55 aerial attack. In those games, the Commodores have allowed nearly 100 yards more than their opponents season average, 355 yards and 315 yards, respectively. The Razorbacks, even with Childs and Adams potentially sidelined with injury, should have no problem putting up their average at home against Vanderbilt.
EDGE: Arkansas

When Vanderbilt Runs

The Commodores running game ranks a decent 68th nationally, totaling 146 yards per game on the ground so far this season. To date, the Razorbacks have allowed 170 yards rushing per game to their opponents, good for 86th nationally. However, the Hogs just faced Ole Miss’ #20 rushing attack and held it to about 30 yards less than its average rushing yards per game, and a half yard less than its normal average yards per carry. Starting DT Dequinta Jones will likely be suspended for the game, but the Razorbacks should still at least be able to neutralize the strength of the Vandy offense here.
EDGE: Draw

When Vanderbilt Throws

Vanderbilt’s passing offense is putrid, ranking 105th nationally, out of 120 teams. There’s no reason at all to doubt that the #26 Arkansas pass defense will be able to completely hold the Commodores in check through the air. Vandy averages just 160 yards passing per game, and I would be surprised if Arkansas allows even 150.
EDGE: Arkansas

Intangibles

Well, most important of all is the home field advantage that the Razorbacks will own in this game. Additionally, Vandy has lost three of four by at least 14 (but by 43 to a Georgia team the Hogs beat), with the lone win coming against an Eastern Michigan team that is winless since he beginning of last season. The Hogs may be without their two best receivers and one of their best defensive linemen, but depth at those positions should allow the Hogs to -for the most part – conduct their business as usual.
EDGE: Arkansas

Razorbacks

Prediction

Vanderbilt really doesn’t have a leg to stand on in this game. The Hogs are the better team on offense and defense, and the game is in Fayetteville. The Commodores may be able to find a reasonable amount of success on offense running the ball, but their futile passing attack should make them far too one dimensional to really threaten the Hogs. Even without Childs, Adams, and Jones the Hogs will win comfortably, but if the receivers are able to play feel free to add an additional 10 points for the Hogs.
Arkansas 35 – 17

– Warzecha –

College Football Lead Pipe Locks for October 30th

1. Michigan St. (+7) at Iowa

Wisconsin just beat Iowa at Iowa. Michigan State beat Wisconsin handily three weeks ago. Now, this reasoning doesn’t always pan out, but I really don’t see how this game will result in a comfortable win for Iowa. In fact, I think the money-line for Michigan State in this game would be very enticing. The MSU running backs are too good to be shut down and the Spartan defense is good enough to keep this game very close. Take Sparty and the points here, and feel good about it. Prediction: Iowa 24 – 23.

2. Missouri (+8) at Nebraska

As good as Nebraska has been this season, Missouri has actually been better, and they are certainly more battle-tested. Mizzou is undefeated and has dispatched with very good Illinois and San Diego State teams, in addition to throttling Texas A&M and beating #1 Oklahoma last week. Outside of it’s win over Oklahoma State last week, Nebraska’s best win this season was over a now 3-4 Washington team, and remember – the Huskers lost to the worst Texas team in the last 8-10 years. Hey, maybe Nebraska wins, but 8 points is too much to lay to a team as dangerous on both sides of the ball as the Tigers are. Prediction: Nebraska 38 – 34.

3. Penn St. vs. Michigan (over 50)

Michigan averages 36 points per game, good for 17th in the country. Penn State has the 21st ranked scoring defense, but has yet to face another Top 25 offense all season. Last week Michigan – with its two best offensive players (QB Denard Robinson & center Dave Molk) standing on the sidelines for most of the game – scored 28 against the Hawkeyes’ then #1 ranked scoring defense. Michigan won’t struggle to score against Penn State, especially coming off of a bye week. And since we all know that Bentonville High School could put up at least 20 on the Michigan defense, going over 50 in this game is a lock. Prediction: Michigan 38 – 27.

4. Auburn (-7) at Ole Miss

Something about this line screams “Sucker Bet” to me, but I guess I’m just going to have to take the bait. I understand that Auburn has only played on the road twice this season, winning close at Mississippi State in week 2 and Kentucky in week 6. I also know that Ole Miss beat Kentucky. However, I can’t help but base my opinion of this game on the week 7 & 8 versions of these teams, and there is a whole lot more than a seven point difference. Take the Tigers, but they probably won’t win by 20 or more like you might expect. Prediction: Auburn 41 – 30.

Lock of the Week!

*Michigan (-1.5) at Penn State

Penn State has been a major disappointment this season. In all honesty, the beating they took from then #1 Alabama may have been the high point of their season so far, because hey, at least it was Alabama. On top of their struggles, they’ll likely have to go with their 2nd or 3rd string QB this week because starter Robert Bolden is still feeling the effects of a concussion he suffered last week, and back-up Kevin Newsome has a knee issue. Michigan is coming off of a bye week during which it was able to get its three best players healthy. Quarterback Denard Robinson, nose tackle Mike Martin, and center Dave Molk are all back to 100% after they all incurred minor, but game-ending injuries against Iowa two weeks ago. The Wolverines know that this is a must win game for their coach, and they will win this game convincingly. Prediction: Michigan 38 – 27.

Record for the season: 11-12
Locks of the Week: 3-2

– Warzecha –