Duane Rankin’s Week 10 recap, Week 11 preview

By | November 11, 2011 9:24 pm | 0 Comments

 

Let us recap Week 10, shall we?

No. 1 LSU (9-0, 6-0 SEC) at No. 4 Alabama (8-1, 5-1 SEC)

Pregame rant: Doesn’t get any better than this. 1 vs. 2. The winner will put itself in great position to play in the BCS title game, but because both teams are in the SEC West, the loser may wind up in the title game, too, if it doesn’t lose again. Alabama has the smash-mouth style and home crowd to beat LSU, but the Tigers have the look a national championship team. Who to watch: Tailback Trent Richardson of Alabama. So strong. So tough. Tigers better buckle up their chinstraps. Tightly.

Postgame commentary: The Tigers were pushed to the brink, but pulled out an overtime win, 9-6. It wasn’t the game of the century, but it was a great defensive battle. Although Richardson had 89 yards rushing and 80 yards receiving, LSU kept him out the end zone. The Tigers got it done.

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Ohio State is 3-0 since Daniel Herron returned./AP Photo.

Temple (5-4, 3-3 MAC) at Ohio (6-3, 3-2 MAC)

Pregame rant: For Erie, Pa.-area folks, you’ve got Ohio senior tailback Donte Harden, a Strong Vincent graduate who is leading the Bobcats in rushing with 514 yards. Averaging 5.6 yards a carry, Harden is coming off a 123-yard rushing effort in a 37-20 win at Akron. Nationally, people can see a mid-major conference game that matters. The two teams are in contention to play the MAC title game.

Postgame commentary: Harden went for 184 on 20 carries. He had two TDs – and his team won, 35-31. The Bobcats are atop the East Division.

Indiana (1-9, 0-5, Big Ten) at Ohio State (6-3, 3-2 Big Ten)

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Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray threw five TDs in last week's romp of New Mexico State./AP Photo.

Pregame rant: These two teams going in opposite directions. Ohio State has beaten a ranked opponent the last two weeks the with latter being in dramatic fashion against Wisconsin while Indiana has given up 204 points in its last four games.  The Buckeyes are turning the corner. The Hoosiers need GPS.

Postgame commentary: Ohio State trailed 10-0 before getting the running game in full gear and prevailing, 38-20,. The Buckeyes ran for 346 yards, had three rushers go for more than 100 yards with Daniel Herron being the leader.  His return from suspension has sparked Ohio State.

New Mexico State (3-6, 1-3 WAC) at No. 14 Georgia (7-2, 5-1 SEC)

Pregame rant: The best New Mexico State can hope for is for Georgia to call off the bulldogs at halftime. Good tune up for the ‘Dawgs before they play SEC rival Auburn.

Postgame commentary: Georgia scored 42 points in the second quarter en route to building a 49-7 halftime lead. Aaron Murray threw five touchdowns with coming in the second quarter. The Bulldogs won,63-16, and are back in the SEC to take on heated rival Auburn.

Here are three games worth watching in Week 11.

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Without Joe Paterno, will the Nittany Lions rally together or fall apart in Saturday's game against Nebraska./AP Photo.

No. 19 Nebraska (7-2,3-2 Big Ten) at No.12 Penn State (8-1, 5-0 Big Ten), Saturday, noon, ESPN

The game is almost an afterthought. Penn State no longer has its head coach – Joe Paterno – or its president. The school’s board of trustees fired Paterno following former defensive coordinator, Jerry Sandusky, being indicted on charges of sexually abusing eight boys over 15 years. The backlash of that helped lead to Paterno being shown the door in his 46th season as head coach. Now the Nittany Lions must go out and play their final home game in an emotional state against a team coming off an embarrassing home loss to Northwestern. Should be a wild one.

TCU (7-2, 4-0 Mountain West) at No. 5 Boise State (8-0, 3-0 Mountain West), Saturday, 3:30 p.m., Versus

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Darron Thomas may prove to be the ultimate playmaker in Saturday's Oregon-Stanford showdown./AP Photo

The top two teams in the Mountain West are playing for more than that. For TCU, it’s a chance to get back in the Top 25 after having a great 2010 season that ended with a Rose Bowl win against Wisconsin. For Boise State, it can’t fold here if it wants to stay contention for a spot in the national title game. Guy to watch? Senior quarterback Kellen Moore. He’s thrown 29 TDs, just five INTs, is completing 74.1 percent of his passes and has only been sacked three times.

No. 6 Oregon (8-1, 6-0 Pac-12) at No. 3 Stanford (9-0, 7-0 Pac-12), Saturday, 8 p.m., ABC

Too bad the two best teams in the Pac-12 are in the same division. If both offenses do what they do, 100 combined points will be scored. You’ve got Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck, the Heisman Trophy favorite, on one side, but Oregon’s quarterback, Darron Thomas, has an element of improvisation that will give the Cardinal defense fits. If Thomas makes six plays in which he makes a big play out of nothing, the Ducks will quack Stanford.

Snooze on these, though.

No. 16 Wisconsin (7-2, 3-2 Big Ten) at Minnesota (2-7,1-4 Big Ten), Saturday, 3:30 p.m., Big Ten Network

The Golden Gophers have played better in the last two weeks – beat Iowa, 22-21 and lost 31-24 last week at No. 13 Michigan State. Still, Wisconsin knows a loss here and it’s out of the hunt for a Big Ten title. For a team that looked every bit the best team in league before last-second losses to Michigan State and Ohio State, the Badgers can get their swag back with a route of Minnesota. They will, big time.

Western Kentucky (5-4, 5-1 Sun Belt) at No. 1 LSU (9-0, 6-0 SEC), Saturday, 7 p.m., ESPNU

The only thing saving this from being an utter destruction in LSU’s favor is the Tigers are coming off a grueling game at ‘Bama. They’ll likely come out sluggish, but eventually take care of WKU.

No. 3 Alabama (8-1, 5-1 SEC), at Mississippi State (5-4, 1-4 SEC), Saturday, 7:45 p.m, ESPN

The Bulldogs are in trouble. Big trouble. Not only is Alabama steaming after losing to LSU, it knows it needs to win impressively from this point on to stay in that highly-popular third spot of the BCS standings.

 

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