2013-09-27

Week 5 - Preview

Welcome to the wide spread start of the conference games. And there are a lot of games already this week with potential.

Last week I explained very short how this season the National Champion will be selected.
It's more or less not very transparent, WHY a team gets the chance to play in the BCS Championship game, once you start to question the BCS rankings.
But 2013/2014 is the last season to have it THAT way.
Next season we will have the start of a new system.

At least until the 2025 season we will see 4 teams to reach the new College Football Playoffs. The semi-finals will be played in 2 of 6 big already existing Bowl games, with the other 4 big ones will host their regular games as usual that season, and each year the semi-final-Bowl-games will rotate through the 6 Bowls. First year (2014) is slated to be the Rose Bowl and the Sugar Bowl, in 2015 it will be the Orange Bowl and the Cotton Bowl and in 2016 then the Fiesta Bowl and the Peach Bowl will host the Semis.

Sounds complicated?

Well, those Bowls had to be brought in because they are those with the most money impact and you can't do this whole playoff thing without their permission. Their lobby is very strong.
So this strange rotation was brought in.

The FINAL will then be hosted in Cities willing to host it. You have bid for that right to host the final.
In 2014 season it will be Jerry Jones Cowboys temple.
After that nothing is fixed yet.

OK, so we now play the first time in FBS history semis and a final. Nice.

But who of those 125+ teams will be selected for 4 spots available?

Now comes the tricky part.

They will be selected by a Selection Committee, consisting of 12-20 people.
It's NOT clear WHO will be part of the committee.

It looks like it will be filled with no longer active athletic directors, coaches, media members and maybe other members somehow connected to college football. Also there should be 1 selected active AD of each of the 5 biggest of the 6 current BCS conferences (SEC, PAC 12, Big 12, Big 10 and the ACC (called the big 5 conferences ...)).
So we have 5 active ADs plus up to 15 other people formerly involved in College Football.

They will do a ranking (not known how many times and how many teams will be on that list) which they will present a few times during the season and of cause the final list after the regular season.
They will s e l e c t then (probably the top 4) 4 teams on that list for the semis and will seat them, and they will also s e l e c t 8 other teams for the 4 remaining Bowls.
How they do create their rankings and do s e l e c t the teams will be not public.

Anyone satisfied with that?

I'm disappointed.

Instead of a more public and transparent system it got more fishy and cloak and dagger.

Some old farts will s e l e c t the 12 teams to play in the bowls ... great.
At least there will be only a semi-final selected and the final participants do have to earn it by winning.
I'm curious to see the first round of this system, but I see controversials coming.

Now let's have a look at the BLOCK OF GRANITE TOP GAMES FOR WEEK 5

Saturday, September 28 3:30 PM ET
#6 LSU @ #9 Georgia
This game will not decide the SEC, for sure, but it will knock the loser deeper into the "No Chance for the National Title" pit.
For Georgia it would be the second loss, for LSU the first one.
Nothing is sure if it comes down to the BCS standings in a few weeks, but one thing IS certain, if you lose, it doesn't help you.
You always need the help of other teams (means they have to lose) to get back into the picture.

Funny thing here is that a loss might not even destroy the teams hope for the SEC title game, since this is an inter-division matchup and at first you have to win inside the division to win it. Of cause will a loss not help you, but it might also not hinder you much.

Now, what will we see?
The Tigers have to face a quite strong Bulldogs team, in Athens, so advantage for Georgia here.
But the Tigers looked good last week. In fact they looked like a very good team.

I pick LSU for two reasons.
I'm still impressed by their performance against Auburn.
That's may sound not like a strong argument, but guys, they really looked VERY GOOD.
Georgia lost against Clemson and those Tigers got almost 200 yards on the ground.
Now I have the picture of that LSU Tiger Runningback in my mind....
I pick the Tigers, but I expect a close game.

Saturday, September 28 3:30 PM ET
#14 Oklahoma @ #22 Notre Dame
This is one of those games I hate.
On one hand I have the SOONERS.
Big time football.
On the other hand I have NOTRE DAME.
Former BIG BIG time football, but that golden dome is a bit tarnished over the years.

So who will prevail in South Bend in Irish territory?
Last season did Notre Dame win in Norman. 30-13.
So this year at home is a winner not being played, right?
Not so fast.

Last season did Oklahoma suck (a bit) and Notre Dame was on a high note.
I think Oklahoma got better, Notre Dame got worse.
Sounds like a fair and square matchup.

I pick the Sooners, since I don't see that Irish team ready to tackle such a team.
They lost against Michigan (which later almost stumbled over UConn and Akron. Wuuuuhuuu!)
They then almost lost against Purdue and needed everything they had to beat Michigan State in South Bend.

Now comes one of the favourite to win the Big 12 and you expect them to win?
IF they win, I'm impressed first and then confused.
But I expect the Sooners to win. And that would fit.

Saturday, September 28 6:30 PM ET
#21 Ole Miss @ #1 Alabama
This game is slated to be the test for Alabama.
Are they worth the #1 tag, are they really that good?

I'm not sure if this game will answer these questions, but if they win the SEC got a bit more boring and Alabama is still on track to win the division.

If Ole Miss wins, the SEC got much more open and everything is possible.
But if you ask me, I pick Alabama at home against any team so far.

I hope Ole Miss will give them more than they ask for and I really hope for an upset to make everything more interesting, but I believe the big red elephant will at the end win the game.

Saturday, September 28 8:00 PM ET
#23 Wisconsin @ #4 Ohio State
This game will probably decide the Leaders division. It doesn't look like any other team inside the division will really compete for this title.
Maybe Penn State will get back to strength faster than expected, but I doubt it.
So this is the deal.

Badgers or Buckeyes, played in Columbus.

Last season did Ohio State win but were not eligible to compete for the Big 10 title, which later was won by Wisconsin.
Odd combination.

I tell you what will happen this season:
Wisconsin will play like hell, but the Buckeyes will play better and will win, at home.
They will win the division and probably also the Big 10 in total.
Wisconsin got a new coach and they are not ready to take on the Buckeyes.
They almost lost against Arizona State and I thing Ohio State is way better.
Buckeyes win.

Saturday, September 28 10:00 PM ET
#5 Stanford @ Washington State
This will hopefully be funny.
It's a road trip for Stanford and I hope for a open game at least for a half and some.

I have no doubt the Cardinals will win this, Wazzu is not ready to compete for the division, but I hope for a high scoring game, where Stanford does just score a few more times than the Cougars.

Why is it on the list?

Not just to annoy you, for sure.

I think Wazzu will upset another team or two in the PAC 12 and maybe it will be this.
And who would not like to see this?

Not because I would like to see the Cardinals lose, no, only because I like upsets and just because it just would be great to say "Oh yeah, Stanford was well on track for the title game, until that Wazzu game I saw. Somehow they lost that one...." LOL.
I still pick the Cardinals of cause.

Saturday, September 28 7:00 PM
Arizona @ #16 Washington
And the second Washington team in the same week!

Rich Rods Wildcats team went unbeaten so far under the radar, because they played only cupcakes, and will now face the ranked Washington Huskies.

The Huskies did play well so far and were better tested. Boise State and Illinois got their losses from them and now comes the explosive Arizona team to test that more conservative defense and offense.

Good thing for the Huskies, this is not played in the desert, but in rainy Washington.
I'm really curious to see this matchup.

I love Rodriguez offenses and I also like that bold team in Washington.
I'm expecting a Huskies win, but a close one and it might get high scoring.

Why does Arizona fall?

Because it looks like that Washington offense is good enough to match any scoring drive of Arizona and I think that Washington defense is suited to stop the Wildcats often enough to win this.
Huskies win.

‘Til next time
Jack6 on BLOCK OF GRANITE

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