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Random Thoughts: A Murky Playoff Picture

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Harsh Reality.

Since the inception of the College Football Playoff in 2014, there has never been a more blurred picture of who the top four might be. A few unbeatens remain but they all have flaws and question marks. Meanwhile, a couple of other playoff regulars were shown the door.


LSU 32 Alabama 31 (OT) - There was no Blake Sims or TJ Yeldon this time around as the Tide just looked out of sorts all night, culminated with Tigers QB Jayden Daniels abusing the Bama red zone in overtime.

Notre Dame 35 Clemson 14 - Dabo’s stubborn blind faith finally got in the way as he again threw DJ Ugielelele back out there to muddle around to get abused. Following his script, the Clemson coach would again pulled his QB in the third quarter down 14-0 hoping to get a spark in the offense. However, this time the move backfired as Cade Klubnik threw an interception on his only attempt at the 14-yard line. The Irish would score three plays later to make it 21-0 and DJU was reinserted into the game. Clemson got garbage points at the end to make it a smidge closer. The Tigers were outmuscled and outgained 348 to 281.


While the SEC is out here playing conference games of meaning, the top-heavy Big Ten and PAC-12 feasted on bottom feeders.

Ohio State 21 Northwestern 7 - The Buckys and national press want to blame this one on the rain and 40-50 MPH winds but both teams had to play in the same conditions. Although passing was a futile exercise (C.J. Stroud 10/26-76-0-0), it should not have affected the ground game. An Ohio State struggled to move the ball in the first half against this one-win opponent, amassing total 62 yards in their first five drives. anOSU scored just before the half to tie it at 7-7. NW stupidly went for a fourth down conversion at their own 45 to open the second half and failed. With the short field, the Buckeyes drove for the lead and basically held on to the end. A 44-yard Stroud scramble set up the third score but that was about the most offense they could muster on the day.

The offensive stats were startlingly similar with 76 to 79 yards passing and 207 to 206 rushing.

Michigan 52 Rutger Hauer 17 - The Scarlet Knights actually led this one 17-14 at the half, but Big Blue poured it on the second half.

Southern Cal 41 Northern Cal 35 - With Clemson, Tennessee, and Alabama losing, the Trojans had a chance to make a CFP statement. Instead, they struggled to put away a poor Golden Bears team.

Oregon 49 Colorado 10 - Dux fans think they are hot s**t for beating this one-win team.

SIDE NOTE 1: Oregon is lucky they have Bo Nix because their back-up QBs are dreadful.
SIDE NOTE 2: The Buffs’ QB is former Tennessee Vol J.T. “Don’t call me Dwight” Shrout, who is boyfriend to Bama softball catcher Ally Shipman.


Florida 41 Texas A&M 24 - The short-handed Aggs led 24-20 entering the final quarter when UF scored three unanswered touchdowns. Anthony Richardson had one of those rare games in which he did not screw up too bad. The Gators QB threw for 201 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 78 yards and two scores. TAMU QB Haynes King lost a pair of fumbles

Liberty 21 Arkansas 19 - As coach at Ole Miss, Hugh Freeze lost to Arkansas his final three seasons. He REALLY wanted this game. The Libbies jumped out to 21-0 advantage before Arky came back in the second half. The Hogs scored a touchdown with 1:11 left and had to go for two points but were denied.

Mississippi State 39 Auburn 33 (OT) - Bully built a 24-3 advantage only to see Aubie come back to take two different leads in the final 5 minutes. Clanga-clang, who has been struggling with kickers for two years now, miraculously found one to boot a 44-yard field goal with 29 ticks to send the game into overtime. Auburn’s Anders Carlson missed a 38 yarder and MSU easily score the clinching touchdown in their extra frame.


Kentucky 21 Missouri 17 - UK had 12 penalties, Mizz lost two fumbles and the two teams combined for a mere 484 total yards. It came down to a controversial ruling on a snap that sailed over the punter’s head. The kicker was able to corral the ball and in one motion turn and get the kick off as a Tigers creamed him. A flag came out for roughing the kicker and after a long discussion it was determined that the punter had remained within the tackle box and by resuming a punting motion had maintained the protection of a punter. The call basically clinched the game for UK. Color me skeptical. What do you think? Was he a runner or a kicker? VOTE below ↓↓↓


Good call or Bad call?

This poll is closed

  • 34%
    Good call
    (124 votes)
  • 65%
    Bad call
    (239 votes)
363 votes total Vote Now

South Carolina 38 Vanderbilt 27 - SCar became bowl-eligible with an ugly win over the struggling Dores who turned the ball over four times. The Gamecocks scored 10 points off turnovers in the first quarter alone.


TCU 34 Texas Tech 24 - The Frogs are so proud of being undefeated but this was a pretty tight game throughout and it was played at TCU’s home field. The Red Raiders (4-5) are not a good team, yet not a terrible team. Even still, TCU did not look like a top four program.

Texas 34 Kansas State 27 - The Longhorns are bowl eligible.

Kansas 37 Oklahoma State 16 - KU finally gets win number six and crazy enough could sneak into the B12CG.


Ugly lime green with some weird logo. But I suppose it worked since North Texas routed FIU and became bowl eligible.


Who knew it would take Kansas to teach Tennessee how to “act like you’ve been there before”? The Jayhawks dumped No. 18 Oklahoma State 37-16.


Notre Dame LB Prince Kollie. Put down $10 to show in the third race at Belmont.




  • Kayshon Boutte had 7 catches against Bama but only amassed 51 yards. His longest gain was 17 yards. He is still stuck on one 2022 touchdown.
  • Southern Cal’s Jordan Addison was reportedly was on the field going through early warmups ahead of Saturday’s game against Cal but again did not participate. He incurred a leg injury that did not seem that serious.


Seriously? You’re going to rush the field for beating App State (5-4), a team you’ve played all of nine times?



It looks like some more PAC teams are trying to catch the eyes of the Big Ten.


The OSU-UW game started last Friday night at 9:30pm CT/10:30pm ET, had a 25-minute delay for power outages and ended on a Huskies game-winning field goal early Saturday morning followed by a little sideline brawl. If you watched the entirety of this game live, seek help.


Nick Saban was not the only sucker who bought into the two-point conversion chart. After an Auburn touchdown made the score 24-12, interim coach Cadillac Williams opted to go for two early in the third quarter and failed. Aubie ended up chasing points the rest of the game missing a second one but converting a third. Had they just been kicking the whole time, the game may have not reached overtime. Sound familiar, Nick?


  • Missy State running back Dillon Johnson had -1 rushing yard on 3 carries.


  • Texas A&M lost their fifth straight, the longest losing streak for the Aggies since 1980 (sad trombone).
  • Since Notre Dame lost to Miami on Nov. 11, 2017, the Fighting Irish are 27-0 against ACC teams in regular season games and 23-7 vs. everyone else.
  • SMU and Houston combined to score 140 points, convert 65 first downs, and gain 1,352 yards in the Mustangs 77-63 win. Strangely enough, SMU converted 10 of 14 third downs while the Coogs were at 1 for 5. Yet, Houston had more first downs overall with 34 to 31.
  • Colorado State WR Tory Horton had 196 receiving yards but his Rams only scored one receiving touchdown and 16 points overall in a 12-point loss to San Jose Canseco State.



Instead of heading to New Orleans, GameDay is going back to Austin, TX for the second time this year for TCU at Texas.



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  • Troy (7-2) - The Trojans reeled off their sixth straight win by topping ULL 23-17. Army likely hands Troy (-8.5) win number 8.
  • South Alabama (7-2) - The Jags picked up their seventh win as well. USA came back from 31-17 to stun Georgia Southern 38-31. La’Damian Webb had 247 rushing yards and 4 TDs. The Jaguars host 3-win Texas State (+16).


  • UAB (4-5) - The Dragons fell to C-USA leader UTSA in double overtime 44-38. Their third straight loss puts them in danger of missing out on bowl season. Oo-Ab hosts North Texas as a 4.5 point favorite in a must-win with LSU following that game.


NCAA Football: Air Force at Army
AFA is the CICT winner.
Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

Having dispatched with Navy in October, Air Force wins the Commander-In-Chief Trophy with a 13-7 win over Army. In typical CICT fashion, this game was a low-scoring slobber-knocker.

  • Air Force (6-3) - The Falcons become bowl eligible with the win. Next up is a sure win over miserable New Mexico (+24).
  • Army (3-5) - The Black Knights travels to Troy as a 8.5 point underdog- another NFL Network game.
  • Navy (3-6) - The Midshipmen made it closer than most people thought, losing to Cincy 20-10. They host Notre Dame as a 17.5 point dog.

Odds/lines are provided by DraftKings and subject to change. T&Cs apply. See for details.



Eliminated: all non-Power 5 incl. Houston, Cincinnati, BYU, FSU, Pitt, Boston College, Wake, Virginia Tech, Duke, Virginia, Miami-FL, NC State, Syracuse, Louisville, Georgia Tech, Notre Dame, Illinois, Purdue, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisky, Minnie, Maryland, Northwestern, Sparty, Penn State, Rutgers, Indiana, Okie, Okie Lite, Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas, West Virginia, Texas Tech, Texas, Kansas State, Cal, Stanford, Oregon State, Colorado, Arizona State, Arizona, UCLA, Utah, Washington State, Washington, Mizzou, Vandy, Florida, Auburn, South Carolina, Missy State, Arky, Texas A&M, LSU, Kentucky. NEW:

Endangered: UNC, Oregon, Southern Cal, Ole Miss. NEW: Tennessee

Extremely Endangered: Alabama - controversial I know but there is still a possibility of Bama reaching the playoff. Clemson - it’s just one loss but BOY was that a bad loss.

A way WAY WAY too early look at the College Football Playoff (CFP) picture:

DraftKings NCAAF Championship Winner 2022-23 Odds:

  1. Georgia +180 to +100
  2. Ohio State +180 to +200
  3. Michigan +1500 to +900
  4. Tennessee +1600 to +1600
  5. Oregon +2500
  6. TCU +3500
  7. Alabama +340 to +3500
  8. LSU to +4000
  9. Clemson +1600 to +4000
  • ACC - A close loss to Notre Dame might have been okay for Clemson. But that didn’t happen. A lot of nutty stuff would have to happen for the Tigers to sneak their way back into the CFP conversation.
  • Big 12 - TCU’s dream run might come to an end at B12 2nd place Texas this Saturday. Even if they win that one, they still have to top 3rd place Baylor in Waco the following weekend. The Bears are rolling with a four TD win at Texas Tech two weeks ago and then topped Oklahoma by 3 in Norman this past weekend.
  • Big Ten - Michigan and Ohio State have each played one currently ranked team in Penn State. UM gets to feast on home games with Nebraska and Illinois before heading to Columbus. anOSU has Indy and @Maryland (GO LIA!), before Michy.
  • PAC-12 - Oregon is looking good but it’s hard to forget that debacle back on Labor Day weekend. A favorable schedule gives them UW and Utah at home with a final regular season game at Oregon State. Go BEAVS!
  • SEC - Georgia is in the driver’s seat with Tennessee still as possible fourth team in the CFP. Ole Miss and Alabama play this weekend. LSU also has an outside shot if they run the table and get some help from others.
  • Indies - Nope
  • Non-Power 5 - Nein.


Tonight at 7pm is the unveiling of the second College Football Playoff rankings according to the CFP Committee. UGA will probably be No. 1 followed by Michigan and Ohio State in some order. No. 4 could be TCU but the CFP Committee has a tendency to go against the grain in early pollings.


  • Of the 130 FBS teams, only FOUR are still undefeated: Georgia, Michigan, Ohio State, and TCU. Ten teams have one loss each.
  • 52 FBS teams are bowl eligible for 84 slots.


  • Power-5 Colorado and Northwestern both sit at 1-8. UMass, USF, and Akron also hold that dubious distinction.
  • Only 14 teams have more than 6 losses on the season. Boston College and Virginia Tech are both 2-7.
  • Vanderbilt, Auburn, and Texas A&M are each one loss away from defeat No. 7.


  • Louisville limped into October with a 2-3 record including a defeat at the hands of Boston College. Since then, they have reeled off four straight Ws and are bowl eligible.
  • After starting the season 0-4, Georgia State is 4-1 with La-Monroe and reeling JMU up next.
  • Fresno lost their first four FBS games but has won five in a row since then.


  • Okie Lite has lost three of their last four after winning their first five and being tabbed as the No. 8 team in the nation.
  • James Madison started 5-0 and became the first team transitioning to FBS to be ranked at No. 25. Since then, they have lost three straight.
  • Indiana is 3-6 after a 3-0 start to the season.

Krazy Kristi’s “SHUT UP!” of the Week goes to uppity snooty Stanford University for suspending the Tree mascot “for the next few months”. During the Arizona State-Stanford intimate get together, the Tree and the Sun Devils mascot plus a few others held up a banner that read “STANFORD HATES FUN” during the halftime.

The message was not directed at the AWOL students and fans (reports say that it got the biggest roar of the day from the student section). It was aimed at the administration who shut down an annual fraternity party called “Eurotrash”, which is typically the first party of the year on campus. No explanation has been given but I am sure you can guess the reason.

This past Saturday, the University doubled down on the overreactions by turning the game with Washington State into a police state. Despite smaller expected attendance, Stanford added extra security guards to the student entrance - many of them armed - to confiscate any signs that said “Stanford Hates Fun”.


COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 12 Washington State at Arizona State
Who is going to win this thing?
Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images


Below are the top Heisman picks in order of the money lines.

Odds are provided by DraftKings and many more options can be seen at that link including Notre Dame tight end Michael Mayer at +30000. [Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See for details.]

  1. QB C.J. Stroud (JR, Ohio State) +220 to +350 to +260 to +140 to +160 to -130 to +110 to +100 to +180
  2. QB Hendon Hooker (SR, Tennessee) +4000 to +1600 to +1200 to +1100 to +450 to +200 to +280
  3. QB Caleb Williams (Soph, Southern Cal) +700 to +600 to +320 to +600 to +500 to +1300 to +800 to +1400 to +700
  4. RB Blake Corum (JR, Michigan) ???? to +1800 to +1800 to +1200 to +1400 to +750
  5. QB Bo Nix (SR, Oregon) from ???? to +3000 to +800
  6. QB Drake Maye (Soph, UNC) ???? to +4000 to +1200
  7. QB Stetson Bennett XIV (8th YR SR, UGA) is tenth highest: +1800 to +1400 to +1800 to +1800 to +2800 to +3000 to +3000 to +1600
  8. QB Jayden Daniels (RS-JR, LSU) ??? to +2000


  • QB Bryce Young (JR, Alabama) from +400 to +300 to +340 to +350 to +800 to +1500 to +1800 to +2200 to +2500


  • Bryce Young did not have the greatest of performances (25-51, 328 YDS, 1 TD, 1 INT) in an important game. There is very little chance the media lets him back into the conversation.
  • C.J. Stroud’s Buckeyes keep winning and that is good enough for a lot of voters who don’t pay attention.
  • Blake Corum - see above.
  • Hendon Hooker came crashing back to Earth, but the Bama haters are still looking back fondly to two weeks ago.
  • Bo Nix is getting some hype but nobody watches #Pac12AfterDark.


Right now, there is nobody worthy at this point.

  • Bryce Young’s road yips have ended his campaign.
  • C.J. Stroud had a terrible game (10-26, 76 YDS, 0 TD) against 1-win Northwestern. He is undeserving of consideration. But who is better?
  • 24-year old Hendon Hooker had been pretty good until he met the UGA defense (23-33, 195 YDS, 0 TD, 1 INT).
  • No running back or wide receiver has been overly impressive except maybe Jalin Hyatt. But he also struggled against Georgia (6 REC, 63 YDS, 0 TD).
  • Bo Nix has faced one team worth a diddly-squat all season (UGA) and he pooped the bed: 21-37, 173 YDS, 0 TD, 2 INT.


  • Auburn starting right tackle Austin Troxell (knee) is out for rest of season.
  • Maryland receiver Rakim Jarrett went out with an injury in the loss to Wisky.
  • Minnesota’s sixth year QB Tanner Morgan was knocked out of the Nebraska game. A redshirt freshman replaced him and led the Gophers to a come-from-behind win, 20-13.
  • Vandy QB AJ Swann suffered an injury against South Carolina and did not return.


  • In response to Tennessee’s over-the-top post-Alabama game near-riot, the SEC has formed a committee to figure out how to reign in these idiotic rednecks. Oddly enough, nobody from fUT is in the group. If you want to read more click here.
  • Due to the locker room scuffle with an a-hole bad sport Michigan player shooting off his mouth, Sparty suspended eight players - all on defense. Who knew it was the motivation they needed? MSU upset No. 16 Illinois in Champaign.
  • Dan Patrick reports have it that San Diego Maradona State will be joining the PAC-12.


  • Man, there are some cold-hearted merfers at Az State. Just like Herm Edwards a few weeks earlier, the Prez and AD met the interim to tell him to turn in his ID badge, collect is crap, and get the F out before he can even leave the field.

Arizona State - OUT: Herm Edwards, INTERIM: Shaun Aguano L (2-4)
Colorado - OUT: Karl Dorrell, INTERIM: Mike Sanford L (1-3)
Georgia Tech - OUT: Geoff Collins, INTERIM: Brent Key W (3-2)
Nebraska - OUT: Scott Frost, INTERIM: Mickey Joseph L (2-4)
Wisconsin - OUT: Paul Chryst, INTERIM: Jim Leonhard W (3-1)
Charlotte - OUT: Will Healy, INTERIM: Peter Rossomando L (1-1)
Auburn - OUT: Bryan Harsin, INTERIM: Cadillac Williams L (0-1)

  • South Florida pulled the plug on the Jeff Scott experiment. The former Dabo assistant went 1-26 against FBS teams in his three seasons.
  • For some odd reason, Mizzou is content with mediocrity by giving Eli Drinkwitz a two-year contract extension that keeps him in CoMo through the 2027 season. He is 4-5 overall this season and 2-4 in the SEC. The Tigers’ wins this year are LaTech, Abilene Christian, Vandy and SCar. In the midst of his third season, Drinky is 15–17 and 10–14.
  • Urban Meyer went hunting in the woods with a friend. His companion collapsed and Urbie called 911. “My friend isn’t breathing,” he shouted into the phone. “What should I do?” “Relax,” the operator told him. “I can help. First, let’s make sure he’s dead.” There’s silence, and then a gunshot. Urbie gets back on the phone and says, “OK, now what?”
  • Fat F*** Phil Fulmer’s wife took her husband’s pants to the dry cleaners and the lady said, “we don’t do curtains.”
Black and White TV


Finebaum thinks Saban is washed-up.


(Below is an abbreviated list of highlighted games of interest with lines provided by DraftKings. If you REALLY need to know about the big Wyoming-Colorado State showdown, you can find the details here.)

Tuesday, November 8

Three MAC night games on various ESPNs.

Wednesday, November 9

Three MAC night games on various ESPNs.

Thursday, November 10

Tulsa at Memphis (-6) 6:30/7:30 ESPN
Georgia Southern at ULL (-3.5) 6:30/7:30 ESPNU

Friday, October 11

East Carolina at Cincinnati (-5.5) 7pm/8pm ESPN2
Colorado at Southern Cal (-34) 8:30/9:30 FS1 - #MustBeNice
Fresno (-9.5) at UNLV 9:30/10:30 CBSSN

Saturday, October 12


Missouri at Tennessee (-21) 11am/noon CBS - Can the Vols get over their hurt feels?
LSU (-3) at Arkansas 11am/noon ESPN - Is LSU full of themselves?
Vanderbilt at Kentucky (-17.5) 11am/noon SECN - Will Levis will put up a bunch of yards and the blabbermouths will proclaim him the NFL #1 pick.
South Carolina at Florida (-7.5) 3pm/4pm SECN - Which SC will show up?
Georgia (-16.5) at Mississippi State 6pm/7pm ESPN - UGA’s last somewhat challenge of the season.
Texas A&M at Auburn (-2) 6:30/7:30 SECN - Ugliness likelihood is through the roof.


Louisville at Clemson (-7) 2:30/3:30 ESPN - CU slumping, Ville on a roll.
UCF at Tulane (-2) 2:30/3:30 ESPN2 - Battle for the inclusivity New Year’s Six bowl bid.
Washington at Oregon (-13.5) 6pm/7pm FOX - Can UW stop this madness?
TCU at Texas (-7) 6:30/7:30 ABC - CFP is on the line for the Frogs.
North Carolina at Wake Forest (-3.5) 6:30/7:30 ESPN2 - Can Wake ruin UNC’s quiet run?


Arizona at UCLA (-19.5) 9:30/10:30 FOX - The PAC absolutely does not want you seeing how mediocre the Bruins are.

Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See for details.


Below is a count of career FBS/Division I-A win totals for coaches.

For those of you new to RBR Random Thoughts, we count all on-field wins at the FBS/Division I-A level. So, before you go squawking about Frank Beamer, 42 of his wins came at Murray State. Mack Brown had six victories in one season with Appalachian State when they were still in what was known at I-AA (FCS today). Brian Kelly won 118 games with something called Grand Valley State. So, let’s stop talking about his win record with such reverence. In addition, we don’t recognize NCAA sanctioned forfeits. If you won on the field, it counts in our books.

Rank Name Years Wins Losses Ahead/Behind
1 Joe Paterno 46 409 136 128
2 Bobby Bowden 40 346 123 65
3 Bear Bryant 38 323 85 42
4 Pop Warner 44 319 106 38
5 Nick Saban 27 281 69 -
6 Mack Brown 33 267 135 -14
7 LaVell Edwards 29 257 101 -24
8 Tom Osborne 25 255 49 -26
9 Frank Beamer 33 238 121 -43
10 Lou Holtz 30 236 115 -45

Mack Brown and his Tar Heels have quietly gone 8-1 this season. With UNC’s 3 point win over Virginia #MustBeNice, Mack picks up a game on Saban.


  • Nick Saban’s message on Monday was to point the finger back at himself and the coaching staff.
  • Saban told reporters that former starting corner Terrion Arnold did not make the trip to Baton Rouge because he was sick with the flu. Eli Ricks has started the last two weeks with Arnold playing only special teams against Missy State.
  • Darrian Dalcourt started at center against MSU two weeks ago. Against LSU, Seth McLaughlin was back in there.
  • Jaheim Oatis and DJ Dale (half sack) returned to the defensive line rotation.
  • Only New Mexico State has less forced turnovers than the Crimson Tide this season. That’s bad, right? Alabama has recovered three fumbles and made three interceptions. There are seven FBS defensive backs who have five interceptions each this season.
  • The Alabama-Austin Peay game on Nov. 19 will kick off at 11am/noon and air on ESPN+/SEC Network+. Enjoy.

GAME 10: Saturday, November 12, 2022

Alabama Crimson Tide (7-2, 4-2) at Ole Miss Rebels (8-1, 4-1)

Oxford, MS ~ 2:30pm CT/3:30pm ET, CBS

  • The Rebs still have much to play for including a shot at the SEC West title with one more conference game loss for LSU.
  • This is Year 3 for Lane Kiffin in Oxford. He is 23–9 overall and 14–8 in the SEC.
  • Oxford forecast calls for a brisk high of 48° with sunny skies and temperatures dropping down into the 20s overnight.
  • TV Announcers: Brad and Gary with Jenny Dell roaming the sidelines.
  • Pull out grandpappy’s old transistor radio and listen to Alabama Radio.
  • Alabama has dominated the SharkRebelBlackManBearPigs 57-10-2.
  • The point spread provided by DraftKings has Bama as an -11.5 favorite. The Over/Under is 63.5.

Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See for details.


Can TCU run the table?

This poll is closed

  • 35%
    No, Texas will beat them on Saturday.
    (130 votes)
  • 6%
    No, Baylor will beat them the following Saturday.
    (22 votes)
  • 17%
    No, both Texas and Baylor will beat them.
    (63 votes)
  • 15%
    No, even if the get by and Baylor, they’ll lose in the B12CG. (Rematch lethargy)
    (58 votes)
  • 25%
    All glory to the Hypnotoad!
    (92 votes)
365 votes total Vote Now