Deace: College Football Report

Each week, our founder checks in with his look at college football, the greatest sport in all of creation. In addition, he offers his insights on where things currently stand with the Cyclones.

If I had a vote in the AP Poll


1. Ohio State (8-0)…Nothing to say that hasn't already been said about the number one team in the land.  See you November 18th.  


2. Michigan (8-0)…It was a game that was much tougher and closer than the 14-point spread indicated, still the Wolverines likely cleared their final hurdle before the game of the year.


3. USC (6-0)…The Trojans head to the road for two straight games before facing with what could be the toughest four-game closing stretch in the nation.           


4. West Virginia (7-0)…Now the real season begins for the Mountaineers, who face one the most anticipated games of the 2006 season Thursday night. 


5. Texas (7-1)…Longhorns survived Colt McCoy's first true road start, their first trip outside of the state, the weather, kicking woes, and a hostile crowd to stay in control in the Big 12.  


6. Auburn (7-1)…After hammering Tulane the Tigers should take Ole Miss behind the woodshed next.  


7. Florida (6-1)…Gators had two weeks to pout over their second half collapse at Auburn and should be focused for the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.  


8 Tennessee (6-1)…Survived a scare from Alabama that should give them some momentum in advance of a tough three-game swing that will decide whether they qualify for the BCS or not. 


9. Louisville (7-0)…Overcame a first half letdown against Syracuse when they got caught looking ahead to this week's showdown with West Virginia.  


10. Clemson (7-1)…Looked great in the national spotlight, but don't forget that if the Tigers get upset at Virginia Tech this week the Tigers still may be left out of the ACC Championship Game.    


11. Rutgers (7-0)…Hardly anyone is talking about this team, but the Scarlet Knights just swept three games on the road against three teams that will likely be going bowling this postseason.   


12. California (7-1)…Nearly blew a shot at their first Rose Bowl since 1959 against a Washington squad reeling from the loss of its starting quarterback.   


13. Arkansas (6-1)…Gets one more tune-up against Louisiana-Monroe before the pressure of maintaining their surprising lead in the SEC West returns.  


14. Boston College (6-1)…Quietly the Eagles stayed in control of their own ACC destiny by confirming our suspicions that Florida State's program is in decline.  


15. Notre Dame (6-1)…Still not sure how good the Irish really are.  They haven't played 60 minutes of quality football yet this season, and we're already entering late October. 


16. LSU (6-2)…Has two weeks to prepare for a visit to Knoxville in what is a must-win if the Tigers want to get back on the BCS radar. 


17. Boise State (8-0)…The Broncos are playing two opponents each week in their quest to be the BCS spoiler: the other team and the computers who don't seem all that impressed with their resume.


18. Wisconsin (7-1)…A young team that just keeps getting better and better and should at least put together another solid double-digit win season that includes another January bowl berth. 


19. Oklahoma (5-2)…If the Sooners are going to avoid missing a January bowl game for the second consecutive season they need these next two road games against ranked foes. 


20. Georgia Tech (5-2)…This week's home game with Miami (Fla.) could be the biggest of the Chan Gailey era.  A win likely puts the Yellowjackets in the ACC Championship Game, barring a total collapse down the stretch.    


21. Texas A&M (7-1)…That was a better than you think comeback win over Oklahoma State, but can the Aggies avoid repeating their recent struggles with Baylor this week?


22. Missouri (7-1)…With the Kansas State monkey off their back the Tigers face their old Big 8 stumbling blocks Oklahoma and Nebraska back-to-back.      


23. Nebraska (6-2)…Physically looked like they belonged on the same field as the defending national champions, but a costly turnover on a play that would've likely clinched the victory stalled what would've been a statement win.


24. Wake Forest (6-1)…There shouldn't be any slip up at hapless North Carolina this week, so why does one still get the feeling the Demon Deacons are on upset alert in Chapel Hill?      


25. Georgia (6-2)…Didn't look all that great in beating Mississippi State, and the ‘Dawgs are really beat up heading into the big rivalry game against the Gators.


Honorable Mention: #26 Oregon (5-2), #26 Brigham Young (5-2), #27 Pittsburgh (6-2), #29 Tulsa (6-1), #30 South Carolina (5-2). 


My Heisman Ballot


1.      Troy Smith, Ohio StateHe's so far out in front now that if his team wins out he'll win the award in a landslide.


2.      Mike Hart, MichiganWeek in and week out he's the most consistent player in college football regardless of position. 


3.      Steve Slaton/Pat White, West VirginiaThese two are interchangeable parts and difficult to differentiate.  Can teammates share the award?


The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly on the Cyclones


The Good—Those new Hy-Vee chicken grillers are pretty good!


The Bad—Same as it ever was.  


The Ugly—Last week's MVP was a punter, praised for his "mental toughness." This week's MVP was a kicker, and it wasn't because he made a clutch kick in the fourth quarter.  Dan McCarney's conference winning percentage is now .285 over 12 years.  To put that in perspective, Jim Walden's conference winning percentage was .313. 


(Steve Deace founded Cyclone Nation in 2002.  He can be heard on the radio each weekday from 4-7 p.m. on 1040-WHO and seen each week on television on Mediacom's "Cy-Hawk Talk: State of the Nations" on Connections Channel throughout 500,000 homes in Iowa.)


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