Not a good week in terms of the out of conference matchups. Apparently Wake Forest is the only hope the conference has in any matchup with the Big East. Virginia became the second MAC victim in as many weeks, Clemson had another extra point blocked, and the Larry Coker Death Watch has begun in Coral Gables
Thursday, September 14th
West Virginia 45 Maryland 24
I am unwilling to toss Maryland under the bus like everyone else in the media has done. Yes, they fell behind 28-0 and maybe it was because the Moutaineers lost interest but Maryland actually acquitted itself quite well following the first quarter. Aside from the incredible speed of WVU's Steve Slaton(who had a scholarship offer from Maryland withdrawn and yes we heard about it all. night. long) who might be a Heisman dark horse, WVU's offense stagnated. The passing game has not been pressed into service and I was shocked by how unfocused and undisciplined they were when the lead got big. In fact QB Pat White got called for a personal foul while he was a blocker on a running play. WVU is good, and worthy of the #5 ranking, though they do not have a lot of room for error. Maryland looked decent and has a shot at six wins if they win all of the winnable games on their schedule. And for pure entertainment that Louisville-WVU game on November 2nd will be something to watch.
Saturday, September 16th
Louisville 31 Miami 7
Speaking of the Cardinals, they have played three games this season and in two of them lost a starting offensive player. RB Michael Bush broke a leg in the opener and this week QB Brian Brohm stretched ligaments in his hand putting him out 4-6 weeks. And with all of that Louisville is in better shape that Miami. Larry Coker is in for an unpleasant bye week where the papers in Florida will eat him alive and then some. Nevermind Coker is the active winningest coach according to winning percentage during the past five years, Miami looks like a shadow of it's former self. It has been pretty downhill for Miami since losing to UNC in 2004. 9-3 season just do not cut it in Coral Gables and the performance today, coupled with the performance against FSU show that the offense is absymal at least in terms of scoring points. And, yes this is another Big East win over the ACC. All of this effort to go out and take the three best football schools from the Big East has resulted in actually making the Big East a better football conference than the ACC. It seems the ACC got stuck with traditional powers which may be sliding a bit while the Big East ended up with a few schools on the rise. Then again the pendulum will swing at some point. I hope.
Clemson 27 Florida State 20
So the last time Clemson kicked an extra point they had it blocked which set up the Boston College win. So what happens on the Tiger's first touchdown tonight? It gets blocked and Florida State runs it back for two points. Nice. And I was also humored that ESPN.com referred to this game on the UPSET WATCH. Only those pesky rankings make this true. Clemson is a good team and FSU is not as good as #9 which is attested to by the anemic 204 yards of offense the Seminoles put up at home against a Clemson defense which is not as strong the preseason hype indicated. Anyway, Clemson gets it done and become only the second ACC team to win at FSU. Obviously the Clemson offensive formations proved to be too much for Bobby Bowden.
Wake Forest 23 Connecticut 14
First of all Wake is 3-0 which makes them the only undefeated I-A team in the state of North Carolina. Wake is also 2-0 against the Big East. This was also a road game against a decent Connecticut team. The Deacs are also halfway to bowl eligibility though the remaining nine games is not going to be kind to them. At this point I am not sure you would be crazy to take Wake and the points againt either UNC or NC State. Jim Grobe has done some good work considering he lost his starting QB.
Boston College 30 BYU 23 (2 OT)
How is this for irony. BC wins a game last week because Clemson has a extra point blocked. So this week BC misses two extra points and a field goal in the first OT before winning in the second OT. Then again BYU missed three field goals, with one of their own in the first OT. The conclusion? Kicking extra points and fields goals is really difficult. Or all of these teams are really bad at it. At least BC avoided losing the trap game.
Virginia Tech 36 Duke 0
What can you say here? VT scored a TD on special teams and ran an efficient offense while Duke got around 139 yards of offense. Beamer ball at its beast. It was one of those games that went exactly as you expected it to go.
Georgia Tech 35 Troy 20
So I was on this crusade to prove GT was being overlooked with my chief evidence being the dropping of ND a spot in the rankings when that barely won in Atlanta. So this week against Troy was supposed to be a nice comparison to FSU along with ND's thrashing of Penn State last week. So what happens? ND gets smacked around by Michigan and FSU loses to Clemson. So, sorry GT, your own your on now. They did look very good however and ran for 328 yards which should really show how bad the FSU running game is at this point. I still say rank 'em, they are likely better than FSU and Miami at this juncture in the season.
Western Michigan 17 Virginia 10
Virginia played with fire last week against Wyoming. This week they got singed pretty badly. And not on the defensive end. WMU only had 178 yards of offense but they got a INT return for a TD. The Cavs offense simply was not very good. The MAC has now won two straight against the ACC.
Southern Mississippi 37 NC State 17
Oh dear. This week will be highly entertaining in the local media. I am not sure a closer loss would make things any better. As one commenter on 850 pointed out that we are three weeks into the season and Triangle football is 0-6 against I-A schools. Wake Forest is undefeated and everyone else can only win if they play down a division and in Duke's case that does not even work. There is a real possibility the reaction from Wolfpack nation will be apathy hoping that withdrawing support will be a more powerful message than unbridle anger.
UNC 45 Furman 42
See the game post below. Not a pretty site on the defensive end. I cannot be sure but I think we have a coaching problem there.
This Week: 5-5