The College Football Report: Week Five Preview

ChalkItUpContributor IOctober 2, 2009

LEXINGTON, KY - SEPTEMBER 26:   Quarterback John Brantley #12 of the Florida Gators carries the ball in the fourth quarter of the game against the Kentucky Wildcats at Commonwealth Stadium on September 26, 2009 in Lexington, Kentucky.  The Gators won 41-7. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

We are celebrating an important event here at the Report. Beginning today, we can enjoy an entire weekend of Top 25 action...without the University of Florida.

That's right—it's a Gator-Free Weekend.

Never fear, commentators will work in Tim Tebow references whenever possible. But for now, while Florida enjoys the week off (and Tebow clears the cobwebs upstairs), we have an opportunity to assess the other undefeated teams in the Top 25.

I doubt any of the following teams will stay undefeated. I recognize few teams, even national champions, finish the season with zero losses. Thus, picking against Michigan (4-0) or Iowa (4-0) isn't going too far out on a limb. Although Alabama (4-0), LSU (4-0), Cincinnati (4-0), and TCU (3-0) might look solid, don't be surprised to see a major upset this weekend. Again.

In a few weeks, we can begin to debate the Byzantine system used by college football to rank the most elite teams. (Yes, another poll! Except the HAL 9000 runs this version.) But for now, we can see the question answered on the field.

Just for kicks this week, I'm throwing in a predicted final score. As always, the following is for entertainment purposes only.

Game: No. 3 Alabama (-15.5) at Kentucky (Saturday, 11:21 a.m.)

Comment: Start time in honor of...blackjack?

As a Kentucky boy, I should recuse myself from this pick. I knew this whole "talking about the other undefeated teams" shtick would involve the Bama-Kentucky game. Yet my gut tells me the Cats will challenge the Tide.

While a win might be too much to ask, given the 77 year gap between the first two UK victories, something tells me the Kentucky squad will play tough. If asked, Kentucky coach Rich Brooks might be satisfied just seeing his team show up. Few teams have played dead as convincingly as the Wildcats last weekend.

Alabama continues to play well against a mixed schedule. After kicking off the season with a win against Virginia Tech, the Tide have yet to play another team with a winning record. I sense the Hokies would fare much better now, and Bama hasn't blown me away in the past few weeks.

Morale may suffer a bit as the Tide D mourns the loss of linchpin LB Dont'a Hightower for the season. Combined with a lull in energy while on the road, Alabama might forget to play at full speed against a Kentucky team they just narrowly beat last year.

The Crimson Tide are the best bet, aside from Florida, to go undefeated, but there will be some close calls along the way.

Final score: Alabama 31, Kentucky 17.


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