College football week four: What we've learned
Published: Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 23:09
Three weeks in, the scene of college football is beginning to look a lot different than what experts initially perceived. Top teams have fallen off while underdogs have emerged.
Most notable was Arkansas’ loss to the University of Louisiana at Monroe. Before the game had started, the Razorbacks were ranked as the No. 8 team in all of college football. After losing to the small school in Northeast Louisiana whose only claim to fame prior to the game was producing country singer Tim McGraw, the Razorbacks plummeted out of the polls. A loss to Alabama last weekend also didn’t help as they continue to fall. We can definitely tell that Arkansas was a pretender.
The ACC has been very disappointing thus far. Many peg them as a conference that could have several national championship contenders; however, only two teams remain unbeaten after the third week: Clemson and Florida State. The two teams play this weekend in a game that will surely decide who plays in the ACC championship game, barring either team losing to a school like Virginia Tech. The ACC went 0-3 against Big East opponents, the biggest upset being Pitt dismantling Virginia Tech by a score of 35-17. UConn was able to defeat Maryland and Louisville hung on against UNC It was nice to see Big East teams beat up on the ACC as they continue to lure teams away from the league.
One of the biggest surprises this season has been Notre Dame. There was a lot of talk swirling around the team as many considered their program to be irrelevant in today’s modern sports era. ESPN’s most outspoken critic wrote, “I don’t love Notre Dame football anymore. Notre Dame football has been living a lie… It has failed to advance the ball.” Notre Dame has made Mr. Reilly and some of their other critics eat their words early in the season. They easily beat the Naval Academy in Ireland by a score of 50-10. They showed grit and resiliency in a tough matchup against Purdue and decisively defeated Michigan State, a team many pegged as the best team in the Big 10. This team has showed a lot in the early going, but has a lot in front of them with matchups against Michigan, Stanford, Oklahoma, Pittsburgh, and USC in the near future. It will be interesting to see how the revitalized Irish handle these challenges, but I don’t foresee them getting pushed around.
In other news, the SEC is still amazing. After having 2 teams in the national championship game last year, the SEC is in great shape to have yet another champion in 2012. They currently have three teams in the top five in the country. The SEC Championship could be more exciting than the National Championship game. With a possible matchup of unbeatens. Georgia looks pretty unstoppable as their stand-out linebacker Jarvis Jones continues to tear up the NCAA. I’d look for the Bulldogs to play either Alabama or LSU, depending on who wins that matchup this season.
The NCAA landscape keeps changing. In two weeks everything will have probably changed. Nothing ever turns out like it should on paper, but as they say, “that’s why they play the game”.