2014 Who's Not ... Week 11
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Summa Cum Lousy
Is it December yet? Oregon State
Mike Riley is a terrific guy and a nice fit in Corvallis, but it might be time to stop giving him contract extensions. A year after finishing the regular season with five consecutive losses, his Beavers are once again circling the drain. Oregon State is mired in a four-game slump that looks destined to grow to seven games before the regular season is through. Even worse, OSU fell at home Saturday to a Wazzu team starting a former walk-on quarterback in place of injured senior Connor Halliday.
The once-promising season for Terry Bowden’s Zips has begun to slip away. With a 27-10 loss to Bowling Green on Tuesday night, its third in a row, Akron fell below .500 with three games left on the schedule. The return of QB Kyle Pohl provided absolutely no boost to the sputtering offense, which turned the ball over 13 times during the losing streak.
Being Voted Off College Football Island: NC State QB Jacoby Brissett
There’s a lot to like about Brissett’s potential and physical ability. But he’s going to need another year in Dave Doeren’s system. Since making a splash in the first half of the Sept. 27 game with Florida State, Brissett has played as if he’s still a quarterback on the Florida Gator roster. He’s accounted for just six touchdowns over the last five games, and two of his miscues resulted in Georgia Tech touchdowns in Saturday’s 56-23 spanking.
Heisman Nopeful: Indiana RB Tevin Coleman
Imagine what Coleman might have accomplished at this stage of his career with more support. One of the game’s premier backs hasn’t scored in the last three games, and he’s averaged less than four yards a carry over the last two. It’s not Coleman’s fault, but if a Hoosier is going to compete for the game’s biggest individual prize, he has to do better than the 71 yards on 20 carries he produced Saturday versus Penn State.
Start evacuating the bandwagon of … Auburn
As playoff contenders go, the Tigers are through after failing to execute in the latter stages of an ugly loss to unranked Texas A&M. That Auburn was even in a game with the Aggies was troubling enough, but there were plenty of opportunities to survive and advance. The Tigers, though, flubbed each of them, fumbling twice in A&M territory in the final three minutes of a demoralizing 41-38 home loss.
At 6-3, the Mountaineers were still getting a ton of respect, since their losses came to Alabama, Oklahoma and TCU. At 6-4, the outlook for this season in Morgantown has changed dramatically. It’s not so much that the ‘eers have dropped consecutive games as it is that the latest defeat came at the hands of one-dimensional, 5-5 Texas. West Virginia failed to execute in Austin, converting 3-of-17 third downs in a humbling 33-16 loss.
You emit a foul and unpleasant odor: The Oklahoma D
This was supposed to be one of the better Sooner defenses of the Bob Stoops era. Someone forgot to notify the kids. Oklahoma now ranks No. 72 nationally in total D, despite harboring the individual talent to be a lot tougher to navigate. Things got so bad at one point during Saturday’s 48-14 loss to Baylor that CB Julian Wilson unleashed his frustration in the direction of coordinator Mike Stoops, who had no answers for the Bear attack.
Needing a vote of confidence: Paul Rhoads, Iowa State
One sin a hot seat coach never wants to commit is losing to Kansas, especially when the Jayhawks are being led by an interim coach. The Jayhawk offense enjoyed its best game of the season at the Cyclones’ expense, churning out an uncharacteristic 514 total yards. Iowa State desperately needed to rebound in 2014 following four straight losing campaigns. Instead, the team is 2-7, seeing hopes of rallying to .500 fade in Lawrence.
Notre Dame QB Everett Golson
Ball security has been Golson’s biggest problem this season, and it haunted he and his Irish teammates Saturday afternoon in Tempe. Pressured incessantly by Arizona State, Golson put the ball on the turf and threw costly picks to bury his team in an early ditch. To his credit, the junior almost dug all the way out of the hole, but five total turnovers was just too much for Notre Dame to overcome in a playoff-ending 55-31 loss. Golson has now thrown a pick in six straight games.
Team of the Weak: Michigan State
Two chances to make a statement in 2014. Two losses by a combined score of 95-64. Where was the vaunted Spartan D on Saturday night, as Ohio State ran up and down the field virtually unopposed? For Michigan State, it looked like the end of the Sept. 6 Oregon game all over again. The Spartans began the weekend as the Big Ten favorite and a strong playoff contender. They ended it in need of fraud protection after getting embarrassed at home by the Buckeyes.
All Things Stoops
There have been some great coaching moments for the Stoops boys over the years. Week 11 was not one of them. Bob’s Sooners got schooled by Baylor in a game that brother Mike’s defense yielded 544 yards. At the same time, Mark’s Kentucky squad was being trounced in Lexington by Georgia, 63-31, for its fourth loss in a row. Even Youngstown State assistant Ron Stoops wasn’t safe Saturday, as the Penguins fell to Illinois State, 35-21.
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