College Football Musings: Week Five

It was a bad week for ranked teams in college football as eight ranked teams went down to defeat; six of them to unranked opponents. We saw the Men of Troy lose in Corvallis for the second straight trip, Georgia fall behind 31 points in the first half and the Gators pick a bad time to commit its first three turnovers of the season. With that let's move on to our weekly musings.

Good to be smart ----- For those who believe the phrase "student-athlete" is an oxymoron it's time to re-think that position. Northwestern is 5-0. Vanderbilt is 4-0. Duke, Georgia Tech and Notre Dame are all 3-1. I think we can all agree those are some pretty decent academic institutions. Vanderbilt might want to frame this week's SEC standings since the Commodores are alone atop the Eastern Division. Way to go smart guys!

Fallen Trojans ----- One of the toughest things to do is overcome a loss in what is viewed to be a mediocre conference. Thus USC's setback at Oregon State was a major blow to their BCS Title hopes. At least that should be the case. However USC got a big break when Florida and Georgia both went down and only slid to No. 9 in the polls. That's a pretty good result after losing to a team that Penn State beat 45-14. Makes you wonder how many voters pay any attention to the results.

Blank out ----- Well in Georgia they called it a "Black Out" as Bulldogs fans dressed in black to apparently differentiate themselves from the red-clad Alabama fans that were coming to Athens. It turned out the 70,000 or so black shirts weren't necessary; the Georgia fans were the ones with the stunned looks on their faces. Georgia was overwhelmed by Alabama from the National Anthem and trailed 31-0 at halftime. Give Georgia credit for showing some character and climbing back to within 11 points, but that first half was amazing. The rest of the SEC can only hope that the Crimson Tide is not as good as it looked in the first 30 minutes.

Rocky Flop ----- Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer says the QB job in Knoxville is open this week. That wasn't too tough of a decision to make. Junior Jonathan Crompton has completed just over 50 percent of his passes and has thrown for just two touchdowns in four games. As a result the Vols scored just 18 points in two SEC games on their way to a 1-3 record. Sophomore Nick Stevens will battle for the job this week. One of the two should put up decent numbers against North Illinois this weekend before facing Georgia, Mississippi State and Alabama in the weeks that follow.

Is a star born? ----- That was the first question that entered my mind after seeing Florida State had dominated Colorado 39-21 in a half empty stadium in Jacksonville. That was huge improvement over the offensive disaster area that was the Seminoles' performance against Wake Forest. Surely a quarterback was found to make this offense explosive? Turns out no so much. Christian Ponder did a nice job for FSU, committing just one turnover and directing the unit, but he didn't have to do much himself. Ponder passed for just 119 yards and ran for another 43. FSU piled on the points thanks to a big game from Antone Smith who raced for 154 and 3 TD. Maybe that's what the FSU offense will be the rest of the season. Run Smith and avoid mistakes at QB. If so, it's worked so far. Now they try to make it work against Miami.

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