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College Football Random Thoughts From Around the Country: Week 13

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Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

The College Football Playoff Committee (CFPC) has released their fifth rankings with the top seven staying the same:

1. ALABAMA
2. Oregon
3. Florida State
4. Mississippi State
5. TCU
6. Ohio State
7. Baylor
8. UCLA
9. Georgia
10. Michigan State
11. Arizona
12. Kansas State
13. Arizona State
14. Wisconsin
15. Auburn
16. Georgia Tech
17. Missouri
18. Minnesota
19. Ole Miss
20. Oklahoma
21. Clemson
22. Louisville
23. Boise State
24. Marshall
25. Utah

UCLA has quietly been climbing the poll: 22-18-11-9-8. UGA has gone 11-20-15-10-9. Marshall made their first appearance of the season at 24.

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See ya! (Photo by Kyle Rivas/Getty Images)

SEC

It was not the most glamorous of weekends for the SEC. Two teams are on a hot streak. Two fan bases are gathering up pitchforks and torches.

Missouri 29 Tennessee 21 - The Vols could only muster 279 total yards against Mizzou's stingy defense with 53 on the ground. Joshua Dobbs was 24 of 37 but had only 195 yards - a 5.3 yards per completion average.
Arkansas 30 Ole Miss 0 - Speaking of defense, Nick Saban would appreciate this Hogs effort because they made the Rebels a** quit. Bo Wallace was dreadful with two fumbles and two picks. It's amazing how bad this team has become.

Yawn inducing:
Alabama 48 Western Carolina 14
Auburn 31 Samford 7
Mississippi State 51 Vanderbilt 0
Georgia 55 Charleston Southern 9
Florida 52 Eastern Kentucky 3
South Carolina 37 South Alabama 12

Playoff Contention:

Alabama (10-1): Aub
Mississippi State
(10-1): @ OM

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Can Jimbo stop the triple option? (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)

ACC

A few weeks ago, I posited in this space that if somehow Georgia Tech could win out their ACC Conference schedule and if Duke loses the next two (Virginia Tech, North Carolina), then the Yellow Jackets win the Coastal Division. From my keyboard to the football gods' eyes, it happened. Now the final portion of this scenario is for the Ga Tech triple option to give the Seminoles suspect defense some fits, FSU takes an L, and you-know-who goes away.

North Carolina 45 Duke 20 - The Tar Heels scored 21 points off Duke's three turnovers. Duke could only managed 378 total yards against a defense that allows an ACC-worst 512 per game.
Florida State 20 Boston College 17 - BC missed a go-ahead field goal. FSU did not.

Playoff Contention:

Florida State (11-0): Fla, ACCCG - Georgia Tech

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PAC-12

If UCLA beats Stanford on Friday, they will lock up the South and force a rematch with the Ducks in the Pac-12 championship game. If the Cardinal beat the Bruins, then it's winner take all in the Arizona-Arizona State game.

UCLA 38 Southern Cal 20 - UCLA QB Brett Hundley had a big game passing (326 yds, 3 TD) but was also responsible for the Bruins' two turnovers. The defense limited the Trojans to 276 total yards.
Oregon 44 Colorado 10 - Nothing to see here. Move along.

Playoff Contention:

Oregon (10-1): @ Ore St, P12CG

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Derp! (Photo by Eric Francis/Getty Images)

BIG TEN

Ohio State and Wisconsin are on a collision course for the conference title. The Badgers host Minnesota on Saturday, Nov. 29, with the winner representing the West Division in the title game against the Buckeyes.

Ohio State 42 Indiana 27 - An unimpressive showing for the Urban Meyer's team as they linger on the bubble. OSU finally woke up after entering the fourth quarter with a one point lead.
Wisconsin 26 Iowa 24 - Iowa (7-4) put up a good fight at home but Wisky's Melvin Gordon was just too much for the Hawkeyes.
Minnesota 28 Nebraska 24 - Coach Jerry Kill - HOT. Bo Pelini - not.

Playoff Contention:

Ohio State (10-1): Michigan, B10CG (Wisky or Minnie) - on the bubble

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BIG 12-ish

There is not much left on the schedule for either of these teams to impress anyone. How epic would a championship game between these two be?

Baylor 49 Oklahoma State 28 - The Bears dialed up 579 yards on the fading Cowpokes (5-6). This might be a good time for OSU coach Mike Gundy to take a better job.
TCU had a bye.

Playoff Contention:

TCU (9-1): @ Texas, IowaSt - on the bubble
Baylor (9-1): TexTech, KState - on the bubble

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Good times for Dee Hart (Photo by Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports)

GRAB BAG

Colorado State 58 New Mexico 20 -  Dee Hart matched a school record with six touchdowns to go with 230 rushing yards. Jim McElwain has the Rams at 10-1.
BYU 64 Savannah State 0 - Every year these guys play some FBS team and every year they get plowed into the ground. Are the paychecks really worth it? What are they doing with all that money?
Maryland 23 Michigan 16 - The final days of Brady Hoke in Ann Arbor have been humiliating.
Kansas State 26 West Virginia 20 - Things have gone downhill fast for the Mountaineers ever since blowing a 13-point lead against TCU on November 1st. They are hoping a trip to Iowa State will end their three-game losing streak.
Louisville 31 Notre Dame 28 - The Irish miss a 32-yard field goal with 51 seconds left to suffer their third straight loss.
Wake Forest 6 Virginia Tech 3 (2OT) Lamest Game of the Week Award has been snatched away from the Big Ten's grasp as these two teams dragged their arses around to a 0-0 tie after four quarters. They exchanged field goals in the first OT. In the second OT, Virginia Tech lost 4 yards, had a 5 yard pass completion, but a sack pushed them back again. A 53-yard field goal was wide left. Wake's 39-yarder was the difference. Both teams punted 9 times each. Did I mention that this Hokie team won at Ohio State?

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ELIMINATED:

Many teams had sloppy lackluster wins over inferior opponents but no eliminations this week unless you count Ole Miss' longshot hopes.

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#TOOMANYBOWLS

73 teams are now bowl eligible for a preposterous 76 bowl openings. 18 teams need one more win to get to 6 wins and bowl eligibility including Tennessee, Kentucky, Michigan, and UAB.

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Amari_medium

Heisman Hype

  • Marcus Mariota put up typical numbers (24/32, 323 yds, 3 TDs, 0 INT) against lowly Colorado.
  • With 200 yards against Iowa, Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon surpassed 2,000 yards on the season. His two rushing touchdowns gives him 25 on the season, most in the nation.
  • I am starting to wonder if MSU's Dak Prescott will even get invited to New York City for the presentation. He is having a fine season but the hype is wearing off. He was 16 of 21 for 193 yards and 3 passing TDs against pushover Vanderbilt. He will need a big Egg Bowl to get back in the discussion.
  • Nebraska running back Ameer Abdullah - done.
  • UGA running back Todd Gurley - toast.
  • The guy who quarterbacks Florida State is undefeated and the defending champ of the Heisman and the BCS. He may not win but he'll probably be in NYC. C'mon Gators/Yeller Jackets!
  • Bama's Amari Cooper had 3 catches for 46 yards in limited playing time.

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Extra Points

  • This jerk at FSU is just insistent that I talk about him. As you probably heard, the 'Noles quarterback pushed a ref out of the way who was holding up the snap - by rule - so that Boston College could substitute. I don't think he should've been ejected as some folks are saying but there certainly should have been a 15-yard penalty. If there is one cut & dry taboo in football, it is that you do not touch the referees. I've seen plenty of guys get flagged for less. Judge for yourself.
  • FSU linebacker Matthew Thomas was ejected for targeting against Boston College and his absence was felt. He will miss the first half against Florida.
  • Remember when Colorado (2-9) used to have a team? It has been eight straight losing seasons and three head coaches (Dan Hawkins, Jon Embree, Mike MacIntyre) since scandal-ridden Gary Barnett was fired after going 7-5 in 2005. The Buffaloes actually won a National Championship back in 1990.
  • As mentioned above in Heisman Hype, Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon now has 2,109 yards on the season. With 2 or 3 games left to play (depending whether they win the Big Ten West Division), he could become one of the all-time rushers:
    Rank Player Yards Season School
    1. Barry Sanders 2,628 1988 Oklahoma State
    2. Kevin Smith 2,567 2007 Central Florida
    3. Marcus Allen 2,427 1981 Southern California
    4. Troy Davis 2,185 1996 Iowa State
    5. Andre Williams 2,177 2013 Boston College
    6. LaDainian Tomlinson 2,158 2000 Texas Christian
    7. Tony Dorsett 2,150 1976 Pittsburgh
    8. Mike Rozier 2,148 1983 Nebraska
    9. Matt Forte 2,127 2007 Tulane
    10. Ricky Williams 2,124 1998 Texas
  • You may recall, Gordon set a major-college record of 408 yards rushing last week against Nebraska in only three quarters of play. It took one week for that record to be broken as Samaje Perine ran for 427 yards as Oklahoma routs pitiful little Kansas (3-8) in rain-soaked and half-filled Memorial Stadium in Norman, OK. You're a big man, Bob.

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Kristi_malzahn_says_shut_up_medium

Krazy Kristi's "SHUT UP!" of the Week goes to Ole Miss WAOM. (I almost feel sorry for them and then I remember the post-game celebration.)

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Sad_face_medium

  • Many Alabama players including running back T.J. Yeldon (ankle), wide receiver DeAndrew White (hamstring), and kicker Adam Griffith (undisclosed) sat out the Western Carolina game. A few others were dinged up in the game and did not return - mostly due to who the opponent was. Many players were limited at Monday's practice but they should play on Saturday. Coach Nick Saban said that Ardarius Stewart and Brian Vogler are the only players who are questionable. There was no mention of wide receiver Amari Cooper or left tackle Cameron Robinson.
  • Auburn leading receiver D'haquille "Duke" Williams (sprained MCL in his right knee) is questionable for the Iron Bowl but the vibe is that he will play after sitting out the last two games (Georgia, Samford). Defensive end DaVonte Lambert (knee), the Tigers' top pass rusher, had surgery Tuesday and is out for the year. Senior DT Jeff Whitaker is out for the Iron Bowl.
  • After eleven weeks of getting beat up, several quarterbacks are feeling the pain. Among them are Bo Wallace (sprained ankle, likely), Florida's Treon Harris (knee contusion, probable), Arkansas' Brandon Allen (hip, questionable), Kentucky's Patrick Towles (ankle, probable), West Virginia's Clint Trickett (concussion, questionable), and Clemson's Deshaun Watson (knee, questionable).

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Black_white_tv_salesman_medium

It's Rivalry Week with many great and long-running rivals facing off, mostly involving the SEC:

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 27:

LSU at Texas A&M 07:30pm - ESPNESPN- Could LSU lose three in a row for the first time under Les Miles?
TCU at Texas 07:30pm - FOX Sports 1 - Could this game be a changing of the guard or is this short-lived circumstances in the Lone Star State?

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28:

Arkansas at Missouri 1:30pm CT / 2:30pm ET - CBS - Word is that this game will become a permanent cross-division rivalry game.
Stanford at UCLA 2:30pm CT / 3:30pm ET - ABCABC- Bruins hope to clinch the South Division.
Arizona State at Arizona 2:30pm CT / 3:30pm ET - FOX - A UCLA loss gives winner of this game the South Division.
Colorado State at Air Force 2:30pm CT / 3:30pm ET - CBS Sports Network - Rams going for 11-1!

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 29:

Georgia Tech at Georgia 11:00am CT / 12:00pm ET - SEC Network- "Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate". Winning this game has helped keep Mark Richt in Athens. He is 12-1 vs. the Jackets.
South Carolina at Clemson 11:00am CT / 12:00pm ET - ESPNESPN- The Battle of the Palmetto State. SC has won 5 straight. Is this Spurrier's last regular season game.
Kentucky at Louisville 11:00am CT / 12:00pm ET - ESPN2ESPN2- UK fighting for their bowl life.
Florida at Florida State 2:30pm CT / 3:30pm ET - ESPNESPN- Gators would love to send Will Muschamp out on a high note. They are not alone.
Mississippi State at Ole Miss 2:30pm CT / 3:30pm ET - CBS- le bol d'oeuf
Tennessee at Vanderbilt 3:00pm CT / 4:00pm ET - SEC Network - UT needs this win to get to 6 Ws. Vandy won the last two. It won't go to three.

Michigan at Ohio State 11:00am CT / 12:00pm ET - ABCABC- A Wolverines loss sends UM to 5-7. A win sends most of the country into a wild celebration of joy.
Oregon at Oregon State 7:00pm CT / 8:00pm ET - ABCABC- Ducks have won six straight.

Nothing else really worth mentioning, except...

alabama fans

IRON BOWL LXXIX

Auburn at Alabama 6:45pm CT / 7:45pm ET - ESPNESPN- Brent Musburger, Jessie Palmer, Maria Taylor

#ALABAMA  #FAU

ROLL TIDE!