Let’s recap Week 14, shall we?
Game of the week: No. 2 Alabama vs. No. 3 Georgia
Final score: Tide 32, Bulldogs 28
Pregame rant: Some would say this is the national championship game.
The winner will likely be the favorite to beat Notre Dame in next month’s BCS title game. Alabama and Georgia are in this position because Oregon and Kansas State lost.
The Bulldogs are not as good on defense as Alabama, but have better skilled players on offense than the Tide.
So special teams could be the difference. If it is, edge Alabama.
The Tide have a senior kicker in Jeremy Shelley, who is 10-for-10 on field goals this season.
Georgia has a freshman kicker in Marshall Morgan, who is 8-for-12. He’s missed two of his last four attempts.
Post-game commentary: Can’t help but wonder how the game would have ended had Georgia just needed a field goal instead of a touchdown to win it.
That would have been the case had Morgan made his only FG attempt – a 50-yarder – in the first quarter. Georgia had forced a turnover, but didn’t get any points off it.
In the end, Georgia should have won the game, but failed to stop big plays and stop Eddie Lacy.
Along with allowing Lacy to rush for 181 yards and two touchdowns, the Bulldogs gave up a 45-yard touchdown pass from A.J. McCarron to Amari Cooper with three minutes, 15 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
Can’t allow those type of plays late in the game.
No. 23 Texas at No. 7 Kansas State
Final score: Wildcats 42, Longhorns 24
Pregame rant: The conference no longer has a title game, but with just 10 teams, everyone plays each other. That’s a rarity these days.
The Wildcats win, they’re Big 12 champions. They lose and Oklahoma wins at TCU, the Sooners will win the conference.
Kansas State beat Oklahoma, 24-19.
While Collin Klein is out of the Heisman Trophy race and his team is no longer in the national title picture, the Wildcats can make a statement against the proud Longhorns.
Post-game commentary: Klein will be invited to New York as one of three Heisman finalists after throwing for a touchdown and rushing for two touchdowns against Texas.
The Wildcats outscored the Longhorns 35-14 in the second half to win the game and Big 12 title.
No. 19 Northern Illinois vs. No. 18 Kent State
Final score: Huskies 44, Golden Flashes 37 (2OT)
Pregame rant: Great game for the MAC.
Two ranked teams. Possible BCS implications.
The winner could wind up becoming the next Boise State. Three players to watch: Quarterback Jordan Lynch of Northern Illinois and Kent State’s Dri Archer and Trayion Durham.
A senior, Lynch has thrown for 2,750 yards and 23 touchdowns, rushed for 1,611 yards and 16 touchdowns and has thrown just four interceptions.
Archer, a junior, and Durham, a sophomore, each have 14 rushing touchdowns. Archer has rushed for 1,337 yards while Durham has 1,176 yards rushing.
Post-game commentary: The Huskies are BCS bound.
Led by Lynch, Northern Illinois outlasted Kent State to earn a spot in the Orange Bowl where they will play Florida State.
Lynch threw for 212 yards and a touchdown and ran for 160 more yards and three touchdowns that included the game winner in the second overtime.
After that performance, he’s no longer the best quarterback no one knows about. He’s one of the best quarterbacks in the nation. Period.
Nicholls State at No. 16 Oregon State
Final score: Beavers 77, Colonels 3.
Pregame rant: This was originally an opener, but the game was postponed due to Hurricane Issac.
Now they’ll close their season against each other. The Colonels, an FCS school, would have been heavy underdogs going into the game regardless of when it was played, but are going into this one having lost their last seven.
Oregon State may out flat, though. The Beavers were the surprise team in the country before losing three of their last five. Then again, they could take out their frustrations from losing to rival Oregon on Nicholls State.
Post-game commentary: The Beavers must have been really, really frustrated Saturday.
Oregon State not only won by 74 points, it racked up 683 yards of total offense.
No. 13 Florida State vs. Georgia Tech
Final score: Seminoles 21, Yellow Jackets 15
Pregame rant: Theoretically speaking, Florida State won the ACC back in September when they beat Clemson, 49-37.
They’ll just make it official Saturday by beating Georgia Tech.
Still trying to wrap my head around how the NCAA granted Georgia Tech a bowl waiver to play in a bowl game even if they lose and fall to 6-7 on the season.
Hasn’t basketball season started in the ACC?
Post-game commentary: Don’t know what’s worse?
Georgia Tech still going to a bowl with a losing record or how Florida State couldn’t put the Yellow Jackets away until the final minutes of the game.
When does Duke and UNC play in Cameron Indoor Stadium?
Wisconsin vs. No. 14 Nebraska
Final score: Badgers 70, Cornhuskers 31
Pregame rant: Wisconsin is slumping. Lost three of its last four all be it in overtime.
Nebraska is not. Has won six straight, but barely edged Iowa, 13-7, last week.
The Badgers want revenge after falling at Nebraska, 30-27, in late September, but the Huskers are looking to win their first Big Ten title in just their second season in the conference.
Compelling story lines, but expect a boring game or an Nebraska blowout.
Post-game commentary: Got the boring part right. Got the blowout right.
Just picked the wrong team to win.
Wisconsin just pummeled Nebraska. The Badgers had two players – Montee Ball and Melvin Gordon – rush for more than 200 yards.
How does that happen?
Ask Bo Pelini.