Football Thoughts: Week 12

Irish Eyes

Pinch me. That’s how I felt last night as a madly switched between ABC & ESPN as Oregon and Baylor folded.

Going into this season I never thought Notre Dame had a shot at a national title. I didn’t even let myself think they had a realistic shot at a BCS game, though I knew if they got 8 or more wins they were a lock for one.

No politicking needed. We don’t have to rely on our fan base or big time dollars to propel us past Oregon or Kansas State. The task is simple, beat USC and go to Miami. As the sole undefeated team left… it’s ours for the taking.

I can’t wait to go up to LA next weekend and hear the Trojans play their silly fight song while we smother them with our defense.

Regarding yesterdays game vs. Wake Forest. Good golly they put a hurting on them. It was over when Carlo Calabrese popped their star RB on the first drive, jarring the bar loose and knocking their RB out of the game. That hit sent a message and Wake never really recovered.

Notre Dame is #1. It’s been since my senior year of high school that I could say that. I remember driving from my dad’s house in Mishawaka and through campus while Notre Dame beat Florida State to catch the end of the game at a friends house in Granger the last time Notre Dame was #1.  Literally, that was half a lifetime ago.

Yeah, I’m a little excited to go to the USC game next weekend. I’m on the lookout for 2 more tickets so my dad and Paul (9 years old) can join me.

Manti Te’o for Heisman Gaining Steam

No player symbolizes the emergence of Notre Dame this year quite like Manti Te’o.  The four-year starter came to South Bend unclear on where it was on the map but has made sure all of college football knows about Northern Indiana. His numbers speak for themselves, his character has been on full display, and I think as more voters are exposed to him… people are going to like the idea of a linebacker winning college football’s biggest individual award.

Bottom line: He’s getting invited to New York. But if they beat USC I think you’ll hear his name called.

San Diego State Goes Bowling Again

The Aztecs didn’t play this weekend. But they are sitting pretty to go bowling. If they win this Saturday against Wyoming and Fresno loses– I’m headed to Vegas for the Last Vegas Bowl. If Fresno wins, we’re going to the Poinsettia Bowl win or lose to play BYU. It’s a nice place to be.

The Big 10 Follies

Er, is Michigan back in the drivers seat? Well, temporarily. Ohio State should roll them by about 45 points this weekend. And then who goes to the Rose Bowl? Probably Nebraska. And Nebraska vs. Oregon is mismatch city.

Did you hear that the Big 10 is thinking of adding Maryland & Rutgers. If that happens we’ll see the long slide for the Big 10 into mediocrity. I mean… you can’t compete with the SEC when you’re showcasing Minnesota vs. Rutgers. I know Big 10 fans don’t want to hear that. But it’s the truth. 

The SEC is Back in it

Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and LSU are lurking in the top 10. All of a sudden it looks like the winner of the SEC championship gets Notre Dame in the National Championship game. Let’s be honest: That’s totally appropriate. They are the best conference this year and their champion deserves a spot.

But I don’t think that a Notre Dame stumble means another double SEC championship year. (Like, we won’t see Alabama vs. Florida in the National Championship game.) If Notre Dame stumbles it’d be the SEC champion vs. Oregon for sure.

The Best of the Rest

  • ACC – Florida State is fun to watch this year. BCS bound.
  • Big 12 – Kansas State is still the best technically, though I think Oklahoma would beg to differ.
  • Big East – I’m going with Louisville. I watched bits of Rutgers games, they are just OK.
  • Big 10 – I’m at a loss to pick the best team. What the heck happened to Wisconsin?
  • Conference USA – No one wants a look at South Florida. They are dangerous.
  • MAC – Gosh, NIU can score. Too bad they are headed for the Motor City Bowl.
  • Mountain West – Boise State is the best team, but here’s hoping Fresno State loses so the Aztecs can win their first conference title since the Clinton administration.
  • Pac 12 – Stanford is the best all-around team. But there’s a likelihood we could get back-to-back UCLA vs Stanford weekends, too. Crazy town out west.

BCS Bowl Predictions

BCS National Championship – Notre Dame vs. Alabama

Orange Bowl – Rutgers vs. Florida

Rose Bowl – Oregon vs. Nebraska

Fiesta Bowl – Georgia vs. Florida State

Sugar Bowl – LSU vs. Texas A&M



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4 responses to “Football Thoughts: Week 12”

  1. Brandon Pachey Avatar
    Brandon Pachey

    Michigan comes back over “that other team” this next weekend, without Denard Robinson in the entire game! Then they continue to take back the Big 10 and make it better than the SEC in the years to come! GO BLUE! Why you gotta be such a hata!!!

  2. Kurt J. Avatar
    Kurt J.

    I actually think USC had a fighting (Irish) chance until the news that Barkley won’t be playing. his injury just delivered on a silver platter your spot in national championship.

    I hope there is a way for Oregon to wiggle back in, but doubtful.

    1. Adam McLane Avatar

      I’m actually more worried about this freshmen playing, trying to prove something and being completely unscouted, than I was about Barkley. I watched them the past 2-3 games… his receivers just weren’t playing for him anymore. My fear is that they’ll show up on Saturday and make this a game.

  3. Nate Avatar

    I definitely think ND deserves this if they can get past USC. Not sure I think this season justifies the 10 seasons of mediocrity that I had to watch instead of more deserving teams due to the insane TV rights deal ND had.

    I still think that Alabama is the better of the two in the SEC Championship. For that reason alone, I hope they get the win and go to the BCS Championship. I think it’s a better match-up than ND vs. GA.

    And the only possible scenario for an all-SEC BCS Championship Game is if FL just overwhelms FSU this weekend. It would be another win against a Top 10 team – and an away win at that – for FL. So their wins against SC, LSU, and possibly FSU (and a good win against TX A&M to start the season) with their sole loss being against GA (which is currently #3 in the country). Not a bad record and it looks even better in the computer rankings.

    That said, I don’t think a win at FSU is a given, And even if they win, it will probably be a close game. Not enough to make the necessary leap to #2. Too bad OSU isn’t eligible. That would have made things much more interesting!

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