My take on week 2
The state of the ACC
We all know what happened last week with the ACC top ranked teams losing to seemingly lesser opponents. This week wasn’t much more of a statement. While Virginia Tech and Clemson won their games this week they played DIAA teams. Miami took on Florida and got whooped. The only ranked team for the ACC was Wake Forest. The Deacons held off a late score by Mississippi by driving the field with less than a minute to play and hitting the game winning field goal. Mississippi may be another BCS/SEC school but they went a whole 3-9 with their only wins over Memphis, Louisiana Tech and Northwestern State. Wake Forest should have won this game a little bit easier. Maryland who barely escaped DIAA Delaware last week wasn’t so lucky this week. The Terps dropped the ball in a 24-14 loss to Middle Tennessee State.
And the Big East
Another conference with some questions. West Virginia knew East Carolina beat a ranked Virginia Tech. It still seemed like West Virginia had no idea what was going on. On top of that USF, the other team most people pick to contend for the conference had to go to overtime with UCF before getting the win. Last season USF won this game 64-12. Is UCF that much more improved? Cincinnati went ambitious and traveled to Norman to play Oklahoma. The Sooners doubled the Bearcats score. Uconn, a team that shared the conference last season also went to overtime. Their game was with Temple. Yeah, Temple. Bringing up the rear in the conference is Syracuse. Everyone expects them to be the worst in the conference. I am not sure everyone expected them to lose to Akron.
The Pac 10 is a 4-2-4 conference right now
USC is always the favorite the last few years. So far this year is no different, but they have only played 1 game. Arizona State is 2-0 and looking the part of upper tier team. We will know more after they host Georgia. Oregon has put up impressive numbers without allowing much scoring. The Ducks have outscored their first 2 opponents, including conference rival Washington, 110-34. I don’t think they have really been challenged though. This week they go to Purdue and we will get a better look at where this team is. Cal, melted down last year, but has started on fire this year. First beating Michigan State then destroying Washington State 66-3. The middle comes down to Arizona who looks improved but hasn’t really played anyone and UCLA who scored 1 big win over Tennessee at home but has only played the 1 game. Bringing up the rear is what appeared to be an improved Stanford but now they are 1-1 and 3 teams that are now a combined 0-6 and only the BYU at Washington game was even close.
Oregon State should not go East
Oregon State traveled to State College and was humiliated by Penn State, 45-14. It was never even close. Not even when it was still 0-0. In recent years the Beavers have made a few trips, which in theory is good. It makes them appear that they are willing to go anywhere to play. However when they do travel East they don’t actually seem like they play. In 2005 they went to Louisville and lost 63-27. In 2007 they went to Cincinnati and lost 34-3. Even just going a little bit east hurts them. In 2004 and 2006 they lost at Boise State 53-34 and 42-14. The good news, Oregon State hosts Cincinnati and Louisville in the next couple years in the return on the deal. The bad news, Wisconsin is on the away schedule soon.
How good is BYU??
BYU beat Washington at Washington, barely. The game was tied nearly the entire time. BYU took a late lead. Washington responded by scoring a touchdown with about 2 seconds left. QB Jake Locker threw the ball in the air and received a penalty. The point after was blocked and Washington was down by 1 point. The onside kick worked except for the off sides penalty. BYU knelt on the ball and the game was over. A 1 point win over a team that was last place in the PAC 10 last season. A 1 point win over a team that lost their opener 44-10 to Oregon. Should BYU finish undefeated, is this really a resume building win??
And East Carolina
That is back to back ranked teams. Virginia Tech on the road at a neutral site and West Virginia at home. Two teams from two different BCS conferences. Two teams that are picked at the top of their conferences. The rest of the schedule? NC State and Virginia seem winnable now. The Conference USA schedule does too. Get ranked. Don’t lose. We could have a bunch of teams at the end of the season looking to bust the BCS wide open.
My list of BCS busters in no particular order
Notre Dame is Notre Dame again
Well the same Notre Dame from last season anyway. I saw nothing today that would make me think they will do any better than last year. Except maybe that they didn’t give up when they were down. San Diego State is pretty much the bottom of the Mountain West conference. They lost to DIAA Cal Poly last week. They never should have been in this game let alone led late. Notre Dame will be lucky to get a bowl if they play the same the rest of the season.
Ok so far Clemson wasn’t really a top 10 team. West Virginia may not have been either. Virginia Tech, Tennessee and Pitt all showed they should not have been ranked either. After a week South Carolina got in off a win over a team that finished under .500 last season, only to lose to a team who hasn’t had a winning season in… as long as I can remember.
East Carolina, UCLA, Cal, Alabama, Utah, and Fresno State all now find themselves ranked. I know a couple were ranked in one poll and not the other and now UCLA was replaced by Cal, but that is a good .20% that has changed around. Can we now wait a couple weeks to see teams play before ranking them?