The Saturday Seven

Nov 08, 2014 2 Comments
Photo By:  Brent Flanders

Photo By: Brent Flanders

The new playoff system promised to generate excitement this season in college football, and it has not disappointed.  Debating who should be ranked where is as heated as ever.  We’re more than half way through the season, and nothing is even close to being decided.  There were surprises like Ole Miss that have come back down to earth now.  And others like Mississippi State who are still in position to make the playoff as they sit in first place.  Some teams that thought their hopes were dashed with early season losses are back in the mix now.  So let’s look at where the season stands in Sports-Glutton.com’s “Saturday Seven.”

1) CONTENDERS:

The smoke is starting to clear some from some great games this season, but what remains are still 8 to 9 teams vying for a spot in the playoff.  There will be attrition in these ranks in the coming weeks as some teams, particularly in one side of the SEC, knock each other out of contention.  Others are starting to catch fire and look to ruin other teams’ aspirations.

Mississippi State:  Until somebody beats them, they will remain in the top spot and so far they have made enough plays to win their games.  Hard fought battles at Kentucky and Arkansas in recent weeks tested their focus.  Huge wins vs LSU, Texas A&M, and Auburn prove they belong.  Two pivotal games, one at Alabama, and one at Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl are waiting as chances to prove again that they will be there in the end.  Heisman candidate, Dak Prescott, is due for a big game too, but Bulldog fans hopes that game isn’t against UT Martin this week, but rather against the Crimson Tide the following week in Tuscaloosa.

Florida State:  They are squarely in the mix and as defending national champs I can’t put them lower than 2nd until somebody knocks them off.  Miami has played well of late and would love nothing more than to ruin the Seminoles’ post season plans.  The offense is going to have to start producing at some point or their repeat run will be short-lived.

Auburn:  They reached the big stage last year so they are a team that has experienced how to deal this adversity.  They won on the road at Kansas State and Ole Miss, and home against LSU.  They need to make sure they don’t get tripped up between the hedges in Athens and let the Bulldogs ruin their chances of entering the Iron Bowl game vs. Alabama with the playoff spots on the line.  Having an experienced quarterback will help them down the stretch.

What about us? – Oregon, Alabama, and Michigan State are waiting in the wings for somebody to slip up and fall.  All three have put themselves in perfect positions to move up the ranks.  Oregon has the best path to remain with only one more game against a ranked team.

2) PRETENDERS:

Notre Dame:  The Irish had a huge chance vs Florida State, but couldn’t get it done.  Close games against UNC and Navy lead me to believe there are some cracks in the foundation with their team this year.

Mississippi:  The Rebels started well this season, even reaching the Top 4 at one point.  Huge wins at Alabama and Texas A&M went over big around there until big losses at LSU and against Auburn burst their playoff bubble. 

Photo By:  MGoBlog

There’s no hope for Brady Hoke. Photo By: MGoBlog

3) THE HEISMAN CRYSTAL BALL:

Winner:  This really is a toss-up at this point in the season.  Guys are making plays but there really hasn’t been one dominant force.  Experience might matter and help lead Marcus Mariota across the stage to in New York City.

  • Runner-up:  Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
  • Invited to Ceremony:  Amari Cooper, Aabama
  • Keep a watch on:  Duke Johnson, Miami, Nick Marshall, Auburn, and Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin

4) THE HOT SEAT CHECK:

SIMMERING:  Coach Mike London, of Virginia, has seen a promising season start to crumble down around them.  The boo-birds are out again and he may not be safe much longer.

BOILING:  Will Muschamp had a solid win over Georgia in an upset, but had crucial losses early on against LSU and Missouri.

TOASTED: Brady Hoke, of Michigan, sits here today as close to the fire as you can get.

5) PERFORMANCE OF THE QUARTER

Duke Johnson, Miami:  Johnson is just a beast right now.  Over the last 5 games Duke has rushed for an average of 169 yards per game, scoring 6 TDs on the ground and 2 more through the air.    And during that stretch he’s led Miami to a 4-1 record.

6) VIRAL MOMENT:

Offensive Pass interference:  The winning TD pass for Notre Dame, that was correctly called pass interference…

7) THE SATURDAY SEVEN AMATEUR PICKS FOR THE PLAYOFF

  • Final 4: Mississippi State, Florida State, Auburn and Oregon.
  • Finals:  Mississippi State and Oregon
  • NATIONAL CHAMPION:  Oregon

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2 Responses to “The Saturday Seven”

  1. Drew says:

    Using the same rationale for Auburn as you did ND, I would put them lower. They needed 3 missed FGs from Kstate to survive and a once a decade type of injury to beat Ole Miss. I do think that they are a great team but I wouldn’t put them at 3.

  2. Jeff says:

    Drew, looks like you were right about Auburn and I was right about ND.

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