A WILD week 3 of College Football and it was a put up or shut up week for the Big Ten. Some stepped up, others stepped down. And we had an UPSET of monumental proportions with the team from Stillwater! It was a great week and the hits keep coming this upcoming week! My rankings for this week will also reference my Week 2 rankings in parenthesis.
Here’s my Week 3 Rankings! Enjoy everyone!
NEXT GAME: vs. #17 CINCINNATI (2-0)
- You might see that score line and think wow Oregon State is not really that great of a team. You would be very wrong. UNLV is actually one of the sleepers this season in the Mountain West and it wasn’t a shocker that the Beavers had to hang with the Rebels until the very end. Mighty Mouse Jacquizz Rodgers is entertaining to watch and the cojones of Justin Kahut to nail a 33 yard field goal to win it with 7 seconds left makes Oregon State realize they can contend in the Pac-10. Next week they will have to bring out all the orange clad Beaver fans for the showdown against the Bearcats.
NEXT GAME: vs. EAST CAROLINA (1-1)
- No it wasn’t pretty, but the Heels came back down 10-0 with 10 minutes to go in the 4th which makes me think this team is good enough to win the ACC. Can they? That remains to be seen. What I would like to see from UNC is a more favorable rushing attack. Shaun Draughn was just ugly on the ground with just 21 yards on 14 carries so that’s an area that needs improvement. ECU comes calling after a loss in Morgantown which means it will only be tougher for the Tar Heels to beat their rival down the road.
NEXT GAME: @ ARKANSAS (1-0)
- UGA is on the cusp of really just losing it all this season. They were almost 0-2 if it wasn’t for Rennie Curran knocking down a pass in the end zone to preserve the victory. But Georgia fans really need to be concerned. Joe Cox looked better in this game but the rushing game still isn’t there and the defense just gave up over 400 yards of offense to a South Carolina team that barely mustered 250 in their 7-3 win against NC State in week 1. The Dawgs barely stay in the top 25 and I was almost motivated to move them out, but there are just too many teams I am unsure about to move into the rankings. Next week, they face a very good Arkansas team that can and might beat them, which would send panic Between the Hedges.
NEXT GAME: vs. MICHIGAN STATE (1-1)
- Here’s the deal. This is a good Notre Dame team. And I believe that after watching Saturday against Michigan. They showed great resiliency down 11 points with 10 minutes to go and coming back to take a 3 point lead. But their defense could be their downfall. Kyle McCarthy really needs to take over that defense and touted freshman Manti Te’o really needs to step it up. The offense is fantastic, the defense is not. The Domers face an angry Michigan State team next week that has played some great games against them in the past.
NEXT GAME: vs. EASTERN MICHIGAN (0-2)
- Did anyone see Michigan beating Notre Dame? Oh yeah, I did. Yep, I called the upset in the Big House with Michigan over the Irish but wow it was an entertaining game. We had trick plays, 4th down conversions, and a nail-biting finish and of course, a little controversy. Nothing wrong with that! The bad thing for Buckeye fans is they will have to see this Tate Forcier guy for another 4 years because he is going to be a winner for Rich Rod in Ann Arbor. I remember saying that about Chad Henne and looked how he turned out? Time will tell on that statement.
NEXT GAME: @ #13 VIRGINIA TECH (2-0)
- I’m sold on this Nebraska team now. Everyone keeps saying oh they are back to the Huskers of old but that’s not true…YET. What I like about the Children of the Corn is that in week 1 we saw the junior Roy Helu Jr. run for over 150 yards and 3 scores, and then in week 2 we saw junior QB Zac Lee throw for over 300 yards and 4 scores, which tells me that this team is balanced and can have breakout games from anyone. The black shirt defense is getting there and is still a work in progress, but the good thing is they are MAKING progress. Next week we will see how much progress they have made in Blacksburg against a very good Virginia Tech team.
NEXT GAME: vs. DUKE (1-1)
- Am I too high on the Jayhawks? Maybe. The problem is that I have yet to see too many teams really make a jump in the rankings past these 19-25 spots. Kansas doesn’t have a difficult game till October 24th when they host Oklahoma, so Kansas could steadily continue to move up the polls. They have the ACC power Duke next week. Look out.
NEXT GAME: vs. #10 GEORGIA TECH (THUR, 9/17)
- The Canes didn’t play anyone this week but it was probably the PERFECT bye week. They have 2 weeks to game plan for the Yellow Jacket option attack now. Jacory Harris needs to be sensational again against the Jacket secondary and Graig Cooper needs to have a big game if the Canes want to spring the mild upset.
NEXT GAME: @ #25 OREGON STATE (2-0)
- I tell you, Cincinnati might be the best team that no one is watching right now. Yes, they beat the Redhawks 70-3 but they had 49 up on them IN THE FIRST HALF! HOLY COW! Tony Pike was brilliant yet again and Mardy Gilyard continues to put up big stats. Next week we will see how good this team really is when they had to Corvallis to take on Jacquizz Rodgers and the Beavers. Expect a lot of points in that one but a great game.
NEXT GAME: vs. RICE (0-2)
- You might think WOW that is quite a drop in the rankings! But it is well deserved. They started out slow again in Stillwater but this time they faced a much better offense and a defense that forced 4 turnovers! I called it last week that Houston would definitely give Okie State a run for their money, but wow I didn’t think they would win. The offense really needs to figure out what’s going on but more importantly the defense needs to be able to stop a team from the Conference USA. But this Houston team isn’t no ordinary C-USA school.
NEXT GAME: vs. TEXAS STATE (1-0)
- TCU could be better than some people think. Yes this was a UVA team that lost to William & Mary the previous week, but still they had it at 30-0 with 4:39 to go in the game before the Hoos tacked on 2 late TD’s. The defense is still nasty after last year’s number 1 ranking, and Andy Dalton is a great manager of the game to go along with his formidable rushing attack. Next week will be a cakewalk, but the week after is the showdown at Clemson. We will see how good this Horned Frog team is in 2 weeks.
NEXT GAME: vs. TOLEDO (1-1)
- They had it and they choked it away again. Plain and simple. The Buckeyes continue to choke away victories in the end of games and as a Buckeye fan, it is extremely frustrating. I will tell you straight up that USC probably had the better team, but Ohio State played too well on defense to give up all those yards in the end of it. OSU had USC backed up with 8 minutes to go but couldn’t get stops on multiple 3rd and long plays against a true freshman. The Buckeye nation is once again in disarray but they really need to get back on the horse quickly. Toledo is a team that is completely capable of upsetting the Buckeyes and it’s a neutral site game. Should be an interesting one to watch between 2 in-state rivals.
NEXT GAME: vs. #20 NEBRASKA (2-0)
- Va Tech bounced back in a big way against the Herd with a dominant rushing attack of Ryan Williams and fellow freshman David Wilson, who could make quite the 1-2 punch in the backfield for the Hokies. Defense was dominant but I am still waiting to see whether or not Kam Chancellor is the man the Hokies need at safety in the secondary. I was thinking he would be a Thorpe Award candidate but he hasn’t showed up yet. Next week is another chance for Virginia Tech to make a statement. Beat the Huskers and you are back in the national spotlight.
NEXT GAME: vs. TEMPLE (0-1)
- Still not convinced this team is top 10 material. I don't know what all the hype is about this team and why the AP keeps voting them in the TOP 5. Who have they beaten and why do they deserve to be there? Whatever, I’ll keep saying that till they play Iowa and we actually see what they are like against decent competition. The concern in Happy Valley has to be the O-line play and the rushing attack. Evan Royster really isn’t breaking out on any big runs and Daryll Clark is having to carry the load on offense. Good thing he is good enough to do it. It gets even easier next week against Temple, who lost to Villanova in week 1.
NEXT GAME: vs. TULSA (2-0)
- So, they took out a little frustration on the poor Bengals of Idaho State. Lighting up the scoreboard to the tune of 64 points definitely made a statement. But let’s face it, it’s Idaho State. I'm still concerned about how that offensive line will protect Landry Jones and if they can open up holes for Chris Brown and DeMarco Murray. NEXT week should actually be a pretty stiff test for the Sooners. Tulsa comes into their bout against OU with a high flying offense and a pretty stout defense. Don’t be surprised if the Golden Hurricane keep it close in the first half.
NEXT GAME: @ #19 MIAMI (FL) (2-0) (THUR, 9/17)
- Well a win's a win but wow Georgia Tech shot out of the gates against Clemson but they seemed to put it in first gear for the rest of the game. We saw the trick plays, the option attack, but what we did see was Josh Nesbitt go away from the running game. Let’s face it folks: Nesbitt is not a passing quarterback. So he shouldn’t try and make himself out to be one. Stick to your guns big man. We have another treat on Thursday night in the ACC. Georgia Tech has a chance to step up in a big game atmosphere in Miami against the Canes and if they do, they will have their chance to streamline straight to the ACC championship.
NEXT GAME: vs. LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE (2-0)
- LSU is really starting to waver a bit and it’s somewhat concerning for Tiger fans. The offense hasn’t looked particularly good, and the defense has given up some plays here and there. Of course they miss the services on the defense of Darry Beckwith and Ricky Jean-Francois. Jordan Jefferson is the quarterback for this team and there's no denying that, but he seems to just be trying to manage the game. Les Miles has to open up the offense and give JJJ more room to improvise because he is good enough to do it. Did you see that Chic-Fil-A Bowl last year? Yeah, he can get it done. Next week might not seem like a big test, but the Rajun Cajuns are 2-0 so that might be an interesting game to watch.
NEXT GAME: @ FRESNO STATE (1-1) (FRI, 9/18)
- Has Robby lost his mind? NO WAY. Boise State deserves to have a shot at the BCS this year. When other power conference teams continue to struggle in the early going against cupcakes, Boise pushes down the accelerator and leave no doubt. Of course that leaves room for interpretation when blowing out teams, but it's better than what others are doing right now. Again, it’s another pivotal game for the Broncos if they want to make a push for the BCS. If they win in Fresno against the Bulldogs, they will get their chance at the BCS if they win out.
NEXT GAME: vs. FLORIDA STATE (1-1)
- Ladies and gentlemen: I have hopped on the BYU bandwagon. Yes it was Tulane, but it was still a road game and still a DOMINATION on both sides of the ball, something I still am in shock over from this team. Don't forget this BYU team lost 9 STARTERS from their defense last year, which wasn't particularly good. Max Hall could have a shot at the Heisman if he keeps putting up big numbers and the Coogs keep winning. Next week will be the pivotal game of the season for the Cougars. If they can beat FSU at home (which will be their first home game of the season), this team could be in line for a shot in the BCS, but of course they still have Utah, TCU, etc.
NEXT GAME: vs. SE LOUISIANA
- No game this week for the Rebs, and it’s probably a good thing. They did not look good AT ALL against Memphis and Jevan Snead will have to rebound for Houston Nutt and the rest of the Oxford faithful. They will have a chance to rebound in a big way against mighty Southeast Louisiana.
NEXT GAME: @ MINNESOTA (2-0)
- Every time I watch this team from Berkley, it's like watching a well-oiled machine. They have so much talent on both sides of the ball and I love watching Jahvid Best, who still has my vote as the best back in the nation. Granted, they haven’t played the best competition, but still you've got to give it to Jeff Tedford who has got this team taking off. Next week they will finally get their first test, heading to Gopher country to take on a Minnesota team that has looked sluggish the past 2 weeks but is poised for a breakout game.
NEXT GAME: vs. NORTH TEXAS (1-1)
- There were definitely some concerned faces after the first half in Tuscaloosa with only a 6 point lead going into half time, but who saw Trent Richardson breaking out and having a big game? The big concern for Bama right now is their running back situation. Roy Upchurch went down with an ankle injury and Mark Ingram is suffering from an illness. Lucky for Nick Saban is that he is an insanely DEEP backfield. Greg McElroy just needs to keep getting reps at QB and he should definitely be ready for the upcoming SEC season.
NEXT GAME: @ WASHINGTON (1-1)
- USC just gets the job done. It’s that simple. Matt Barkley was poised under pressure on the game winning drive, eating up almost 7 minutes of clock. The Bucks D had them on 3rd and 9 and 3rd and 10 and he got big completions. Joe McKnight was phenomenal and Stafon Johnson was the bruiser on the goal line. The defense also got tremendous pressure on Terrelle Pryor and dismantled his ability to run. Unfortunately it doesn't get any easier for SC as their next game will be a trip to Washington to take on a familiar face in Husky coach Steve Sarkisian, who's a former coach on Pete Carroll's staff.
NEXT GAME: vs. TEXAS TECH (2-0)
- It was a slow start for the Horns in Wyoming but McCoy finally got things rolling in the 2nd half. Still concerned about the running game with no set starter in the backfield and Mack Brown really needs to get that nailed down in these next few weeks. Offense put up 544 yards of total offense, but they can’t afford a slow start against the Red Raiders this up coming week or Taylor Potts could light up the scoreboard in a hurry and keep Texas Tech in the game.
NEXT GAME: vs. TENNESSEE (1-1)
- Now here's a team that gets the job done against lesser opponents. The Gators didn’t show anything new nor did they change anyone’s set beliefs that this is the best team in the nation. Finally they get past the cupcakes and get into the SEC schedule, which starts out with one game that I will definitely keep an eye on. Lane Kiffin and the Vols have been talking a big game in Knoxville right at Florida and their program. Good thing for Tennessee that they are backing up all that talk with wins, wait, nevermind that, they just lost at home to UCLA. Never the less, that will be a fun, mean-spirited ball game.
AND THERE YOU HAVE IT! MY TOP 25 FOR WEEK 3! I will also break down my Heisman Race and my Bottom 10 coming up sometime Monday! Until then, enjoy the college pigskin everyone!
If you have time, take a listen to my Sports Talk Radio Show that I host here at Purdue University MONDAY NIGHTS from 5-7 PM right here: www.purdue.edu/wccr!