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As we hit the top of the hill of this roller coaster season, I have to get emotional. The season has been going by so fast, and it’s hard to believe that it’s already halfway done. It’s all downhill from here as we pick up speed and learn real fast who the contenders and pretenders are.
What is not a pretender, and certainly a contender is my weekly review. So hop in and tighten the restraints as we go across the country and discuss my favorite things from the world of college football this past week.
Scarlet Knight Stunner
Even though there was a notion that Greg Schiano and Ryan Day were going to throw hands last Saturday, the real knockout blow wasn’t delivered until this weekend. Cornerback Desmond Igbinosun was on the receiving end of a brutal truck stick from Anthony Grant that left him seeing stars.
After Rutgers alum Eric LeGrand suffered the fracture to the C3 and C4 that left him paralyzed back in 2010 (and still mostly to this day) I get nervous seeing any hit like that. Fortunately, Igbinosun walked away, but my goodness that was quite the lick.
Shadow Boxing The Sooners
When Oklahoma dropped its first game of the season to Kansas State, I had no idea I was about to witness a full blown implosion. This team didn’t just take a step down, they crashed harder than the schooner did a few years back, on their way to the pit of misery.
After the second loss in a row to TCU, I really thought they would rebound and play Texas tough. Wrong. They got obliterated 49-0 in the Red River Showdown and are now reeling, trying to save the locker room and better the product between the lines.
Texas looked like they were running an offense only practice, throwing the ball to wide open receivers without a defensive back in the frame. Then missed tackles over and over makes it seem like they are purposely letting guys run wild.
So yes, teams are really out here shadow boxing the Sooners, and winning against the almost non existent opponent.
Sonny Days In Fort Worth
Sonny Dykes, the new head coach at TCU, has the Horned Frogs on fire. Sitting at #3 in the nation with 530 yards of offense per game, and best in the country at 8.08 yards per play, I’d say this hire was perfect. The running game has always been elite, but his passing principles he brought over from SMU are thriving.
Wide receiver Quentin Johnston is starting to get the ball like he deserves. For his size, he’s freakishly shifty, and even better at catching the ball in traffic. This past weekend at Kansas, he went berserk with career highs in catches (14) and yards (206).
If this team can shock top 10 Oklahoma State at home this coming weekend, I’ll move them up into the #7 spot because this offense is incredible.
Race To 15?
In the Big 12, there’s always been an understanding that none of the teams play defense. That is why it used to be called the race to 50 because seemingly every game was a team winning with above 50 points and sometimes over 100 points all together.
My favorite example of these offensive masterpieces was when West Virginia played Baylor in 2012 and the final score was 70-63. West Virginia had 807 yards of offense while Baylor had 700 on the dot. This was all in regulation without overtime, and since that game, I’ve always just believed nobody in the conference could play defense.
My thought process may be changing a little, especially after what I saw in the Kansas State and Iowa State game. It was a 10-9 barn burner in Ames, that saw only 664 yards of total offense combined. That’s not even the amount Baylor obtained by themselves in the aforementioned football game.
With a new team like the Cincinnati Bearcats, who pride themselves on the defensive side of the ball coming to the Big 12, the script may be flipping. After watching Oklahoma go to the playoffs and get smoked every time, I think the teams are starting to realize that maybe they should play some defense for once.
New Coaches, New Standards
In a season where we’ve seen coaches fired mid season, many of those teams have responded in a positive way. All four teams, Arizona State, Georgia Tech, Nebraska and Wisconsin all won their matchups this past weekend. So I guess the moral of the story is if you need some wins, just go ahead and fire your coach.
Grasshopper Takes The Pebble
When Ryan Day was able to get Marvin Harrison Jr. to commit to the Ohio State Buckeyes, I knew he was going to be good, but not THIS good. His stat line is incredible, with 31 catches, 536 yards and already nine touchdowns. He makes a highlight play or two every week, “Mossing” defenders by just out jumping them.
His nickname is “Super Marv” which is completely understandable. He flies around out there like a super hero, then looks like The Flash on occasions running the go route. If he was draft eligible this season, he would be a top two wideout in the draft, and he sure isn’t number two.