Super Saturday Pick 6: The Top 25 Will Be Shaken Up
It's a new day for the sports world and a new arrival/mainstay in the columns of Bleacher Report. The beginning of these daily prophetic installments happens to fall upon an Armageddon of the college football world. A week that involves a rematch of an ill-fated championship, a chance for a freshman to dethrone the champs, and a face-off between two organizations looking to return to glory.
Miami may have stole the King from Cleveland in 2010, but the scar left by the Buckeyes in the 2002 title game still stings the Canes to their core. As for Ohio State, the 2010 seasons expectations have them raising the BCS title for the first time since that fateful game the set off this rivalry.
Penn State's Freshman QB, Robert Bolden, had his first test as the starter of a top 25 team against Youngstown State and as expected the Michigan native looked like a seasoned senior with 239 yards, 2 touchdowns, and a 69.0 completion percentage. However, his next test will be in Tuscaloosa against the reigning champs and a defense full of future NFL players.
Michigan and Notre Dame are both prestigious schools that have hit a rough patch in the recent years, which resulted in the firing of both of their head coaches over the past 3 years. The recent installments of Rich Rodriguez in Michigan and Brian Kelly in Notre Dame have restarted talks about a return to the title scene for both programs.
Quick Picks included: Florida State vs. Oklahoma, Georgia vs. South Carolina, Oregon vs. Tennessee
Check out my picks and please comment on what you think the outcomes could be.
#2 Ohio State vs. #12 Miami
The Hurricanes go into Columbus looking for a fair fight and the Buckeyes are fully equipped to give them one for the ages.
Heisman candidate, Terrelle Pryor, wants to further prove to the world what he did in the Rose Bowl wasn't just a fluke and that he can lead this Ohio State team to the promise land yet again. On the other hand, the Hurricanes defense comprised of Allen Bailey, Brandon Harris, and Ray Ray Armstrong should have enough presence in the pocket and secondary to slow down Pryor and his favorite target, DeVier Posey.
The Canes offense has so many targets it will be difficult for the Buckeye defense to cover them all, so their only chance to stop the pass lies on the back of Cameron Heyward. Heyward definitely has an NFL future, but his immediate future better have him throwing Jacory Harris to the ground more than once during the game.
In this obvious battle of the defenses, will Heyward keep the Bucks at the top? or can Bailey, Harris, and Armstrong shut down Pryor and Co. to catapult themselves into the title race?
I'm betting on the Canes because their offensive armory will be too much to handle in Columbus and Pryor's race for the Heisman will be temporarily put on hold as the Buckeyes look to salvage the season.
Miami wins by 6
#1 Alabama vs. #18 Penn State
Penn State wants to make their season count and now would be the perfect time against an Ingram-less Tide, but can inexperienced Robert Bolden lead the Nitanny Lions to victory.
Alabama is without their Heisman winner, Mark Ingram, but obviously they aren't the top team in the nation just because of him.Their defense may have lost a lot from the title team, but returning players such as Chris Jordan and Robert Lester keep them sharp. Not to mention Trent Richardson and the surprising Eddie Lacy, both of which fill in for Ingram perfectly and actually make an interestingly productive running back tandem. The productive run game and still-sharp defense should be enough to stem the Lions attempt to dethrone them.
Penn State on a high from their new starter, Rob Bolden's performance against Youngstown will use the run game and their ability to clog the hole on defense to put a rip in the Tide's attempt to repeat. Evan Royster's ability to smash and dash down the field makes Penn State a difficult team to stop, but expect the Tide to stack the box and force the freshman to throw the ball. So State's production on offense will be limited and they will have to rely on a stout defense line to stop the newly formed dynamic duo for the Tide.
I expect the Tide to roll through the inexperience of Bolden and use Trent Richardson to his full extent to wear down the defense, leaving room for another freshman Eddie Lacy to steal the show in Tuscaloosa.
Bama wins by 10
Notre Dame vs. Michigan
In a battle of former powers, Michigan looks to finally capitalize on the two year growing pains with Rich Rodriguez and turn the program around but Notre Dame is beginning the same process with a fresh coach of their own, Brian Kelly.
Michigan used their speed on both offense and defense to out-pace Connecticut last week in a stunningly simple victory. Sophomore quarterback, Denard Robinson, ran for 197 yards while throwing for 186 yards which draws comparisons to his counterpart at Ohio State, Terrelle Pryor. However, Robinson was extremely accurate with an 86.4% completion rate. Expect the combination of Robinson and starting running back Michael Shaw to wreak havoc on the Irish defense.
Brian Kelly walks into a situation at Notre Dame where the offense is already clicking on all cylinders under new quarterback, Dayne Crist, but the defense is a shell of its former self. The Crist-Floyd combo too scary to think about when going up against a fairly unproven Michigan defense. This game will lie on the hands of Michael Floyd, just as it does Denard Robinson for Michigan because both defenses are suspect at best.
I expect Robinson and the finally united Michigan Wolverines to sneak a victory out from Brian Kelly's nose in South Bend.
Michigan wins by 3
Quick Pick: #10 Oklahoma vs. #17 Florida State
Christian Ponder and the Seminoles will go into Oklahoma and show the Sooners why they belong in the top 10. Demarco Murray will make an excellent effort for the Sooners, but I don't see him overcoming the always strong Seminole defense.
Seminoles win by 7
Quick Pick: #24 South Carolina vs. #22 Georgia
Steve Spurrier breaks his team into the top 25 yet again, but will it be enough for him to keep his job after the season is over. Spurrier will push his team harder than ever and the NCAA issues with Georgia standout receiver A.J. Green make the Gamecocks my choice for the win.
South Carolina wins by 14
Quick Pick: Tennessee vs. #7 Oregon
Lamichael James returning on the heels of an excellent performance from back-up Kenjon Barner will give the Ducks the ability to run circles around the Tennessee defense. Not to mention, Oregon's defense has to be amongst the top 15 in the nation. This is why Oregon is an easy selection for the win in Tennessee over the Volunteers.
Oregon wins by 21
This concludes the first of many Pick Six installments to come and remember to look for the NFL and MLB versions of this article. Please comment and add your own opinions, Thanks.