College Football Musings -Week 9

There are still unbeaten teams in major college football and four 4-4 teams in the SEC. The Heisman has never been more wide open and hot seat coaches are edging closer to learning their fate. We offer up all that and Brandon Spikes in this week's musings.

Gouge-gate ---- Brandon Spikes hurt his reputation and may have affected his draft status with his retaliatory roughing up of Georgia RB Washaun Ealey in Jacksonville Saturday. Spikes got a half game suspension, but could have gotten more. However many national media folks have made fools of themselves putting this in the category of Oregon RB LaGarrette Blount's sucker punch of a Boise State player after their upset loss. While I find Spikes' actions reprehensible it must be placed in the proper context. He didn't hurt Ealey and the Georgia RB and his teammates have downplayed the incident. If it was as bad as the video made it look do you really think Ealey would have done nothing more than jaw briefly afterwards?

How Many Can Stay Unbeaten ---- As a charter member of the "I Hate the BCS" society there's nothing I'd rather see than three or more unbeaten teams at the end of the season. Well my wish may come true since there are seven teams with perfect records in November. Only one of those teams is certain to lose before the BCS Bowl bids come out since Florida and Alabama cannot both be 13-0. However it looks to me like three or four of the five others might make it. Boise State and Texas will not face a team that comes close to them personnel wise, but the other three have major challenges ahead. Cincinnati has No. 13 Pittsburgh on the road. Iowa has to play at No. 16 Ohio State while TCU plays No. 14 Utah at home. If I had to pick a number I would say there are four unbeaten teams when the bids come out.

BCS Snub Ahead ---- If TCU and Boise State are unbeaten only one of them is assured of a BCS invite and the other could be left out. There are three at-large spots in the BCS assuming one of those two takes one of them. The SEC runner-up will get one while Penn State will get one if the Nittany Lions beat Ohio State. USC would be very attractive to the Fiesta Bowl at 10-2, while 10-2 and a No. 14 ranking would also get Notre Dame an invite. You think some of those politicos were cranky before, wait ‘til their hometown team goes 12-0 and ends up in a third tier bowl game.

SEC Filling its Slots ---- The SEC already has five bowl eligible teams led by top 10 powers Florida, Alabama and LSU. South Carolina and Auburn are 6-3 and also in position for post season play while six other SEC squads are within two wins of accomplishing the feat. At this point only Vanderbilt (2-7) is out of the running but some key games are coming up. This weekend South Carolina travels to Arkansas (4-4) to face the Razorbacks. While the second tier SEC Bowls (Outback, Chick Fil-a, Cotton) would love to see the Gamecocks as an 8-4 possibility, folks in Memphis and Shreveport are screaming Whooooo Pig Soieeee!

Heisman Anyone ---- I wrote off Tim Tebow's chances at a second Trophy a week ago, but four TD on national television has him back in the conversation. I still like Colt McCoy is the man to beat, but the Texas QB has 16 combined TD and eight INT compared with Tebow's 18 and four. If you want big numbers Kase Keenum of Houston and Kellen Moore of Boise State have more to offer. Alabama RB Mark Ingram (1,004, 8 TD) needs a big game this week against LSU.

Hot Seat Update ---- Ron Zook got a vote of confidence from his Athletic Director two weeks ago, but his Illini whipping Michigan 38-13 did even more to assure for the former Florida head man of another season or more in Champaign-Urbana. However it appears nothing can save Al Groh (losses to William and Mary and Duke) at Virginia. Tommy West (Memphis), Mike Sanford (UNLV) and Steve Kragthorpe (Louisville) are also all but assured some off time in the near future.

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