A few notes and observations after a Saturday of watching college football and not covering it.
There is a difference, you know. While I enjoy my job, it’s nice sometimes to kick back with the clicker on the couch, to arrive late and not miss anything or to leave when the game is finished. Lots to be said for that approach.
In watching a great portion of several games I offer the following:
LSU can be had. Not a big news flash there, but the Tigers played better than I thought they would against Alabama.
LSU tailback Charles Scott is a load, and he gets good blocking from his offensive line and fullback. Many of those linemen went down with some sort of injury yesterday, so it’s not clear how strong they’ll be when Ole Miss visits on the 22nd.
Alabama was giving up about 60 rush yards a game, and Scott and the Tigers ran right through them.
The Tide’s big nose tackle, Terrence Cody, was coming off the injury list, and he obviously is not the same human being he was before he was hurt early in the second half against the Rebels.
Scott and Keiland Williams, who flirted with the idea of signing with Ed Orgeron at Ole Miss, will challenge Peria Jerry and the Rebels’ defensive line. They could possibly challenge Greg Hardy, but who knows what his situation will be.
That same defensive line can change things in the Rebels’ favor with a good pass rush. LSU quarterback Jarrett Lee did not disprove theories that he’ll make poor throws and careless ones over the course of a game. A strong Ole Miss rush will compensate for weak pass coverage that has the ability to enter Lee into the Heisman race.
The unknown in the mix is LSU true freshman quarterback Jordan Jefferson. He’s much more mobile. He did not get on the field against Alabama, but given Lee’s performance that could change.
In other news …
Kentucky has a pretty good football team. While Georgia has fallen from its No. 1 perch, the Bulldogs still have some top-flight athletes, and Kentucky — which lacks a big-name win this season — played toe-to-toe and had a chance to win on the final drive.
It would help the Rebels in their bowl standing if Kentucky peters out at the end. The Cats have six wins already and with Vanderbilt and Tennessee left on the schedule have a great shot at eight wins. They also have a fan base that turns out for bowl games, wherever they are.
I thought Tennessee would play with some emotion and beat Wyoming, then Vanderbilt. I was wrong on the first count and probably wrong on the second.
Commodores fans are rightfully nervous right now. Still needing a single win for bowl eligibility they go to Kentucky, host the Vols and go to Wake Forest. Maybe they’ll beat the Vols.
Texas Tech, the primetime ABC game for the second straight week, was quite entertaining. I have a Heisman vote this year, and Graham Harrell and Michael Crabtree are legitimate candidates.
Tech coach Mike Leach was very laid back and funny when I worked with him during Ole Miss’ home-and-home series with the Red Raiders. Leach may be a bit more intense these days. He didn’t have any one-liners for the sideline TV lady prior to taking the field against Oklahoma State last night.
Tech had no trouble getting past the emotional win over Texas and now has two weeks to prepare for a trip to Oklahoma. It will be hard to pick Tech to win that game, because the Sooners are going to get their points, much more so than did Texas or Oklahoma State.
A Tech loss will throw the Big 12 South into the world of tie-breakers.