CFB Week 12: The week before rivalry week is…weak

Apparently the SEC schedules cupcakes the penultimate week of the season? You’ve got to dig a little harder this week to find the games worth watching.

Alabama lost! This means two things to me: 1) I may have an interest in the national championship game this year, and 2) the header of the college football subreddit has finally change to something other than an elephant. One or neither of those things may be of interest to you.

If you’re a QB looking for material for your Heisman reel, it’s hard to do better than this Johnny Football highlight:

Not only does he nearly get sacked, he fumbles the ball, recovers it, is flushed out of the pocket, and then throws a perfect pass on the run for a touchdown. It’s brilliant stuff.

After the shocker in Tuscaloosa, we’re left with three undefeated teams: Kansas State, Oregon, and Notre Dame. Filling up spots four through nine in the BCS rankings are the rest of the SEC: Alabama, Georgia, Florida, LSU, Texas A&M, and South Carolina. Out of those six, only Florida has a challenge (#10 FSU) left on their schedule (and of course the SEC championship game). What I’m getting at here is that we still aren’t safe from a SEC-free national championship. The smallest slip up by any of the three undefeated teams and ‘Bama jumps up to the two-spot before you can say “what the hell’s an elephant?”1

Here’s a couple notables from this past weekend that you may have missed:

It seems like this always happens. The week I notice that Louisville had somehow won all nine of their previous games, they go and lose to terrible Syracuse. So much for that nightmare/dream (depending on your view of the BCS) scenario of four undefeated teams at the end of the season.

Kansas almost won a game! Not quite, but almost.

Guys, Ohio State is still undefeated. They’ve got tough games against Wisconsin and Michigan remaining, but, like, what happens if they end up undefeated? Who’s the moron who decided to take the postseason ban this year instead of last year, when they finished 6-7? If they do run the table, fire the AD?

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Virginia Tech at Boston College

12:30 PM; FOX

Last week’s game against Florida State was another example of the defense doing enough to keep the Hokies in the game and the offense failing to capitalize. I mean, heck, the Seminoles boast a top-10 offense, and the Hokie stop unit kept them to negative fifteen rushing yards! But the offense still makes me want to drop a barf.

After the game put together this video of WR Marcus Davis, who’s been accused of loafing all season long, failing to block on several plays:

Davis leads the Hokies in receiving this year (754 yards), but his effort has often been questioned. Well, Deadspin picked up the video. Then the RTD asked Davis about the video, to which he responded:

A few of those were passing plays when I was behind the play,” Davis said. “Clearly I can’t block in the back. Another two of those plays were mental errors. One, [quarterback] Logan [Thomas] forgot to send me in motion. So of course that’s going to look bad on me. Another one I read the signals wrong.”

And then Andy Bitter reported that Davis had been benched:

Did a fansite-made video that went quasi-viral force Beamer and Co. into changing their starting lineup? While I totally agree with the change, it worries me that 1) it took this long, and 2) the coaching staff may have not made the decision without the video…that a fan made. Scary stuff.

This week the Hokies travel up to Beantown and face Boston College. I’ve really given up predicting how this team is going to play. They’ve looked like shit away from Blacksburg, but the defense is coming off their best performance of the year. As bad as Tech is, BC is worse. But who knows.

Virginia vs. North Carolina

Thursday, 7:30 PM; ESPN

While the Hokies ride a three-game losing streak, the Hoos have put together two solid wins over NC State and Miami. I didn’t realize it, but UVA has beaten Miami the last three years. I swear, Virginia is the strangest team: they reliably lose to Duke yet beat Miami.

And this past weekend’s Miami game was great to watch. QB Rocco and QB Simms rotated in and out about every other possession–which I think is a terrible idea, but it’s hard to argue with results. Rocco went 29-of-37 for 300 yards with four touchdowns and zero interceptions. If he plays that well against the Hokies, the Wahoos will win. What happened to ol’ Turnover McGoo? With 2:38 to go in the fourth quarter, Rocco engineered the game winning touchdown drive that left only six seconds on the clock–talk about game management!

Tonight, the Hoos take on North Carolina at home and are a three-point underdog. UNC was supposed to be one of the league’s better teams, despite their postseason ban, but the Tar Heels have dropped games to some pretty terrible teams (Wake Forest, Georgia Tech). Virginia’s got the momentum heading into this game and should win.

Games worth watching

Thursday, 7:30 PM, ESPN; North Carolina at Virginia — Go Hoos!

12:30 PM, FOX; Virginia Tech at Boston College — Go Hokies!

3:05 PM, FOX; #18 USC at #17 UCLA — It’s nice when crosstown rivalries mean something. Jim Mora has maybe successfully made the transition from the NFL to college–it’s a tricky move in either direction and lots of folks fail–and has the Bruins at 8-2. UCLA’s a 3.5 point dog at the moment, but I think they can pull off the upset at home.

8:00 PM, ABC; #13 Stanford at #2 Oregon — It’s the game of the week! Mostly because all of the other games this week suck. But, like I’ve said all season, never sleep on a chance to watch Oregon’s offense work.

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  • Game of the week & Gus Johnson Watch — Weak sauce this week! Apparently the SEC schedules their cupcakes as the second-to-last game of the season. Thank heavens for the PAC-12! The OregonStanford game should be a good one.
  • Stupid Picks from the Heart — Has it gotten to the point where Virginia Tech on the road is a Stupid Pick from the Heart? And, of course, Wake Forest over Notre Dame!

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  1. At the Tech-Alabama game a couple years ago I witnessed a great exchange between two inebriated, yet friendly, football fans. An Alabama fan shouted at a Tech fan: “Hey, what the hell is a Hokie anyway?” To which the Tech fan responded “What the hell is an…elephant?” 
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Ross Catrow

Founder and publisher of RVANews.

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