Bourbonstreet’s Championship Series (b-streetC.S.): Week 7

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Bourbonstreet’s
Championship Series: (BstreetC.S.)

(note to reader: this is a BCS game forecast, not an Official Ranking top to
bottom)

Bourbonstreet’s B.C.S. Projections:

  • Orange: Klempson vs. Notre Dame
  • Fiesta: Texas vs. Michigan
  • Rose: wvu vs. Boise State
  • Sugar: Florida vs. Louisville
  • B.C.S. Title Game: Ohio State vs. Southern Cal.

#1 Ohio State:

Last week: slapped around Bowling Green for a half, took it easy for a half
This week: Magic Johnson State (Michigan thereof)

85% passing last week? Yup. That would be Troy “I used to love the HR ball,
but I’m now a contact hitter as well” Smith, Ohio State’s soon to be very
well-rounded QB. Last year I had thought Smith to be a slightly more polished
version of wvu’s old major harris, i.e. in love with the BIGplay at all costs.
But Troy Smith is in danger of becoming a complete QB. If he does so before
Michigan, no one will beat Ohio State this year. The Buckeye’s have scored at
least 24 points every week. So it’s very likely to take a minimum of four
plays to beat them this year. Michigan State is actually better than a .500
football team, and every year they mess around with a perfect or two. About
every 4th year they actually pull the upset. But Michigan helped wear the
Spartans down last week for Ohio State. OSU will prolly be in a minor shoot-out
this week up in East Lansing, but if this Buckeye Defense can continue to slowly
mature as a stop-unit, you may be seeing Jim Tressel win his 2nd MNC in four
years. Passing is the one thing that somewhat bothers OSU, but MSU is not sturdy
enough against the Run, and Spartan QB Drew Stanton throws too many Picks. OSU
by double-digits.

#2 Southern Cal:

Last week: beat Washington jus’ in the nick of time
This week: In L.A. to play Arizona State

On paper, to start the year, this was gonna be a very good PAC-10 football
game. But ‘Zona State had its stellar QB log-jam solved by an ill-timed naming
of a Pivot starter (who then left the team), and the internal workings of the
Sun Devils have not been the same since. So.Cal’s offense is not as explosive
as last year’s, but it is very good, though much more deliberate and
methodical. So.Cal’s Defense is actually improved. So overall this Trojan team
might could play with last year’s by the end of the Season. The Trojans have a
few Injures, and are now into the toughest part of their Schedule. USC has won
seven of the last eight vs. ASU, and gets a BYE next week. They need it. But
they need to focus on taking a dangerous ‘Zona State team out first. ASU has
had 13 days to prep, but has given up a whopping 97 points in their last two
games. That, along with a very user-friendly Turnover Margin, is a problem. I
expect ASU to hang-around and bother USC a bit, but I do expect a Trojan win in
the end at Home.

#3 Florida:

Last week: beat LSU in a very tough, physical SEC game
This week: traveling to play Auburn in another tough physical SEC game

Here is a football team that has slowly crept up my Rankings, and has slowly
improved from good to border-line great. That’s called Coaching folks. When
you beat Tennessee, Alabama, and LSU in the same year, you are a pretty dog-gone
tough football team. Now the brutal gauntlet known as the 2006 Florida Gator
regular season schedule continues Away at recently upset Auburn. If Florida
wants to beat Auburn, they need look no further than the Arkansas game film.
Arkansas whipped Auburn at the point of attack and Ran over the War Eagles by a
whopping 219 yards worth of Ground Margin. That stunned me. Florida is a very
balanced Offensive team, so it will be intriguing to see if Coach Urban Meyer
will mime what Arkansas jus’ did? Florida is the only D-1 football team to not
connect on a FG all year. Auburn was most likely looking a bit past Arkansas
last week, and Florida will take the War Eagles’ best shot. But I do like the
QB (plural in Florida’s case) edge that the Gators have here, as Florida has
won eight of the last nine head to head.

#4 Texas :

Last week: won convincingly in the Red River Rivalry vs. Oklahoma
This week: home against Baylor

Texas could very well look back and lament that they were 13-1 on the year
because they played Ohio State too early in 2006. Texas was actually out-gained
by over 100 Yards last week, as Colt McCoy may have taken a step backwards as
Pivot development goes. But now that they have put Oklahoma down, who is there
left to play that can hook the Longhorns in 2006? Prolly no one, as this
Longhorn football team has an outstanding eight different units ranked in their
respective Top-10 out of all of college football. Texas has won seven straight
vs. the Baylor Bears by an average of 42 points. Baylor is not a bad football
team, but when you only Rush for 41 Yards a game you are by definition one
dimensional. Texas plays Nebraska next and may look ahead to the Cornhuskers,
but Texas clearly has enough horses to ride to a Home win here. Both Passing
Defense and Passing Offense need some work for Mack Brown’s football team.
They get just that vs. Baylor this week. ‘horns by at least 20.

#5 wvu:

Last week: sloppy win vs. Miss. State on the road
This week: in Mo-town for a big east game vs. Syracuse

wvu’s football season almost came to an end last week, as both mega Rushing
threats steve slaton and pat white suffered minor but noticeable leg injures.
slaton to his Knee, while white’s was unspecified, but the wvu announcer said
white was “gimping” around the filed. His Pulp Fiction word, not mine. wvu
was sloppy, but still tallied over 300 Rushing. So how bad can things be when
you are 5-o and 2nd in Rushing Offense, and 34th in Total Defense? wvu strikes
me as a football team that almost needs to find themselves in a good scrap of a
game. Things have basically been too easy for wvu this year on the whole.
Syracuse is .500, which is a little better than most expected. But the ‘Cuse
has been out gained in Total Yardage in eight of their last nine games, so their
recent three game winning streak is actually all the more impressive. Last week
Pitt ran for nearly 250 on the Orangemen. So if Pitt can get that many up in
what Will once called: “The Jiffy-Pop Dome”, how many will wvu get in
Mo-town? The ‘Cuse is an ok football team that now loves to attack on Defense.
They will turn wvu over a couple of times, but wvu will hit some big plays as
well. This one has a doubled up 40-20 kinda day written all over it, and I do
like the 4th Quarter Heilig-Meyer stock option that I jus’ picked up.

#6 Michigan:

Last week: Easily took care of instate rival Michigan State
This week: visiting Happy Valley, at nite, on national TV, in JoePa’s tent,
walleye glasses not included

The H&H express of (QB, Chad) Henne and BIG-10 leading rusher (Mike) Hart
rolled over Michigan State last week, out gaining State on the Ground by over
150 yards. But let me tell you this, Happy Valley is a dangerous place when
Penn.State is the under-dog. #8 Ohio State escaped by 1 in 2003, #8 Nebraska was
blowm out in 2002, and #18 Minnesota and #6 Ohio State were both upset in JoePa’s
house in 2005. Michigan is ranked #6. But the Wolverines have the 1st best
Rushing Defense, and are 67 spots better in Turnover Margin than the Nittany-Lions
are. So the PSU margin for error is small, even at Home. Then there is the fact
that Penn State has not beaten Michigan in
their last seven attempts. Yes, this game does qualify for my upset-alert
status. But I’m not quite seeing enough outta Penn.State QB Tony Morelli to
call for an upset here. This will be a competitive BIG-10 slugging match; I can
even envision PSU leading, but not winning. Michigan by 10 or less, and do NOT
forget that the BIG-10 is a man’s man of a Conference, as they have no
OPEN weeks!

#7 California:

Last week: clipped the Oregon Ducks’ perfect season, as I predicted
This week: visiting always dangerous Washington State in Pullman

If you recall my 1st poll I had California ranked a sparkling No.Cal, So.Cal,
Low.Cal 7th; and look who has finally merited that praise? The CAL Bears ripped
off five straight wins since Tennessee beat them in week#1, scoring a minimum of
41 points every single time out in the process! That’s what I call coming
correct, shaking thyself, and kicking the pig. This CAL team is amazing on
Offense, but they are really only so-so as Stop Units go. But they are in luck,
as the Washington State Cougars have more than jus’ a splinter in the paw this
week, as WSU is a very lame football team right now. The Cougars do have the
Offense and Defense to play with CAL, but not the Special-Teams. WSU actually
has a 16 yard Total Yardage edge here, and has played much better Defensively
since week#1. This is another upset alert that falls jus’ short, though this
should be a pretty high-scoring, pretty entertaining affair throughout, and I’ll
call for a CAL win, in spite of the Home team doing very well in this series of
late.

#8 Louisville:

Last week: unfocused early, locked-down to beat down on Middle Tennessee
State
This week: former 2006 VT foe Cincinnati comes-a-calling

Brian Brohm is rumored back early from his Thumb scapeling, maybe as early as
this Saturday vs. Cincinnati! That would allow eight full Quarters of football
to WD-40 any rustiness that Brohm might have from being out so much last year
(Knee), and so much this year (Thumb). As we found out, The ‘Nati has a few
athletes and is game, but the emotionally lift of Brohm’s return would be too
much to ask of these Bearcats in Papa John’s Stadium. L’ville needs to work
on its return game; dead last in Kickoff Returns and 93rd in Punt Returns will
be a Field-Position issue in a tight game like the upcoming one with wvu. But
the Cardinals’ have every major Offensive unit ranked 10th or better, and
every major Defensive unit ranked 16th or better. That’s a B.C.S. quality
team, even if wvu beats them on November the 2nd. Louisville has won eight of
the last nine head-2-head with Cincinnati, make that nine of the last 10 after
this Saturday.

#9 Boise State:

Last week: dismantled, and sold Louisiana Tech for scrap
This week: oddball Sunday nite match-up with New Mexico State

Here is the best shot for a nonB.C.S. team to ever qualify for a B.C.S. bid
folks. Boise State is a very experienced and veteran football team, which gives
them an edge in the not losing focus department. How does 7th in Rushing
Offense, 16th in Total Defense, and 10th in Turnover Margin strike you? Strikes
me as a perfect season, as the Broncs only play two renaming teams with winning
Records on 2006. Boise State has scored over 50 points 60% of the time they play
lowly New Mexico State in the 2000’s. So this one is only about staying
healthy, spreading out PT, as Boise State has already lost two upperclassmen
starting OLinemen for the Season. That’s a problem for a program that
struggles with blue-chip depth. But still, Boise State has 20 Quarters of
football to mature their two new OLine starters for a 2006 WAC Regular Season
ending show-down game, visiting the lesser casino town know as Reno, home to the
University of Nevada.

#10 “T-e-double-n-e-double-s-double-ee:

Last week: pulled UGA’s chain and made UGA “bark!”
This week: OPEN

I’ve been an unsmall critic of Tennessee Head Coach Philly Fulmer in the
past; in spite of his MNC, in spite of his highest active wining% among D-1
Coaches. Until now. Coach Fulmer promised to stop the Discipline problems
(players with BB’s vs. Cops with guns; among other off-field woes) in
Knoxville. The fact that he is now 5-1 when he was picked by many (self
included) to slide in 2006 says loud and proud that he has taken care of his
Disciplinary business. You do not go down between the fabled hedges of Georgia
and win by nearly 20 points by mistake folks. UT is good. Not quite great, but
good enough that their 9th ranked Passing attack and 29th ranked Total Defense
will be tough to beat, especially when they play on their checkerboard endzones
at Home.

Provisional Perfect Rankings: Because being perfect is what
Scoreboard is all about:

#10y Rutgers:

A very solid Big East football team. That’s what the Scarlett Knights are.
They almost need a Major League Baseball or Coach Phil Jackson “*” dropped
on them, because of which conference they compete in. They do field the 10th
Ranked Rushing Offense, and the 3rd ranked Total Defense. That is very
impressive until you look at their sched’ and see that they have only played
one team with a winning record. RU plays Navy, Pitt, then L’ville in the next
four weeks. That’s at least two L’s for the princely and valiant, but soon
to be beaten Scarlett Knights right there.

#10z Missouri:

IF I had to pick a National surprise team, Mizzou is surely it. This team did
not have a lot back, a new QB, and an always dicey BIG-12 sched’. In fact, my
current Coach of the Year is clearly Gary Pinkel of the Tigers. 6-0 does not
suck, nor does beating Texas Tech away last week. But now the Tigers sched’ is
about to Steve Irwin them. This is a rock solid football team, a bowling
football team, but one that does not enjoy good Special Teams play and one that
has clearly benefited from a Twinkie schedule thus far. Missouri will get to
nine wins, with an outside shot at 10. But that’s about it, and that’s not
quite enough for a BIG-12 Championship Game date with Texas. It may however be
enough to change Gary Pinkel’s address to a Florida one next Season.
(hint-hint)

Others Receiving SEC bourbon:

Auburn, Georgia.

1 L teams that will make some B.C.S. noise:
Notre Dame, Klempson, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Nebraska, Arkansas.

#24 Virginia Tech:

Last week: BYE
This week: up on overcast Chestnut Hill to try to crack open the Flyin Eagles

122.25
That would be our average Total Yardage Margin head-2-head vs. B.C. since
1997. That favor’s us/VT; and is a direct reflection of our overall Speed
advantage, which is still intact, though actually a bit diminished on this
particular year.

G-C-G vs. DT-
-DT

MLB
That would be 2 all-conference quality first-team G’s, and one scrappy
over-achieving C vs. a 1st-team MLB, and 2 very adequate DT’s. Then there is
this: the B.C. Interior combo averages 312
pounds, whereas the VT Interior trio averages 269
pounds!

Average 6`1“
vs. Average 5`11“
As Chris Coleman adroitly pointed out; we/VT enjoy sizey advantages when our WR’s
match-up 1:1 with B.C.’s Secondary. Yah gotta like that; especially in the Zone.

Pass Attempts: 451
vs. 147
Completions: 276
vs. 86
Comeback wins: 6
vs. 1

That would be 306%
more Experience Passing, 321%
more Experience in connecting on Throws, and an even 600%
more Experience winning when coming from behind. Those are not small Experience
margins, all in favor of B.C. QB Matt Ryan.

Revised Weather Channel savy prediction:
B.C. 26, VT 23.

# 60 Mayland. #84 france. The frenchy’s may have missed their last best
chance at getting their 3rd win on the year last week vs. ECU. Only UNC looks
beatable to me. Maryland is the crab-cake State, and should eventually pinch a
win from the hoos. Though actual wedding-invitations are now required tender to
gain non-Wedding Crasher admittance to post game football parties in the 7th
State in the Union. Former Terrapin and Dallas Cowboy HOF’er Randy White says
he only dabbles in seafood, and has the lactose intolerant allergy to dairy,
therefore he will not eat fromage (cheese).

Peace out yo’:

Oregon.

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