Duane Rankin’s Week 11 forecast

By | November 7, 2012 12:03 am | 0 Comments

 

Here are three college football games worth watching in Week 11.

Game of the week: No. 15 Texas A&M Aggies (7-2, 4-2 SEC) at No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide (9-0, 6-0 SEC), Saturday, 3:30 p.m., WSEE (CBS)

Pregame rant: Texas A&M has won seven of its last eight games since losing its opener. The Aggies’ two conference losses are to Florida and LSU.

Those defeats aside,  Texas A&M has made a better adjustment to SEC football than Missouri has. So the Aggies will be ready Saturday. The question is will that matter against the Tide?

Alabama is No. 1 nationally in scoring defense (9.11 points allowed a game), but LSU exposed that D a little bit. The  Aggies are fourth in the nation in scoring offense (44.67 points a game).

If freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel is on his game, the Tide will have their hands full. One of the most exciting players in college football, Manziel has 2,527 yards passing, 922 yards rushing and 31 total touchdowns (16 passing, 15 rushing).

Quarterback Kevin Hogan took command on Stanford's offense in last week's blowout victory at Colorado./AP Photo

No. 13 Oregon State Beavers (7-1, 5-1) at No. 16 Stanford Cardinal (7-2, 5-1), Saturday, 3 p.m. WFXP (FOX)

Pregame rant: Since Oregon State and Stanford still have to play No. 2 Oregon, the winner of this game still has a shot to win the Pac-12 North.

Since the Beavers have the Ducks at home in the regular-season finale, I like their chances to upset Oregon better than Stanford. With that being said, Stanford should put away the Beavers.

It’s all going to come down to redshirt freshman quarterback Kevin Hogan.

Hogan is now the starter after leading Stanford on six straight scoring drives with five ending in TDs in a 48-0 rout of Colorado. He’s a dual-threat QB, but Oregon State has time to prep for him.

Penn State Nittany Lions (6-3, 4-1 Big Ten) at No. 18 Nebraska Cornhuskers (7-2, 4-1 Big Ten), Saturday, 3:30 p.m. WJET (ABC).

Quarterback Taylor Martinez threw a game-winning TD in Nebraska's 28-24 win at Michigan State last week./AP Photo

Pregame rant: The Cornhuskers are in control of their own destiny. They keep winning, they’ll end up in the Big Ten championship game.

Penn State would love to put an end to their hopes.

The irony of this game is Nebraska was the first team Penn State played after the late Joe Paterno was fired for his part in covering up the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

If Penn State can handle Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez, it has a chance. If it can’t, it’s a wrap.

Snooze on these, though.

Maryland Terrapins (4-5. 2-3 ACC) at No. 10 Clemson Tigers (8-1, 5-1 ACC), Saturday, 3:30 p.m., ESPNU

Pregame rant: Since losing at Florida State, Clemson has won five straight games, scoring at least 38 points in each ACC victory.

Expect those trends to continue against the Terrapins.

Junior quarterback Tajh Boyd may be the most underrated quarterback in college football. He’s thrown 16 TDs and ran for five in Clemson’s five-game win streak.

No. 2 Oregon Ducks (9-0, 6-0 Pac-12) at California Golden Bears (3-7, 2-5 Pac-12), Saturday, 10 p.m., ESPN

Pregame rant: If the Ducks can score 62 points against USC, which is just as talented as they are, imagine how many points they’re going to score against Cal.

As many as they want.

Miami Hurricanes (5-4, 4-2 ACC) at Virginia Cavaliers (3-6, 1-4 ACC), Saturday, noon, WJET (ABC).

Pregame rant: Outside of Clemson and Florida State, the ACC is horrible.

This game is proof of it.

Miami needs to beat Virginia and Duke to win the ACC Coastal division. The Cavs are bad and Duke is, well, a basketball school.

– Duane Rankin

 

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