CAN I SAY “GO HAWKEYES!”?
Iowa vs. Iowa State: ESPN Gameday will be in Ames this Saturday for arguably the biggest game in the rivalry’s history. The Hawkeyes have won the last five meetings. The teams did not meet last year due to the pandemic. Iowa easily defeated Indiana 34-6 to open their 2021 season while the Cyclones escaped in-state rival and FCS power UNI 16-10.
Alabama: The Crimson Tide are still here much to the dismay of everyone bored with their continued domination. Alabama can apparently afford to lose everyone to the NFL and still roll over ranked competition. The Tide face a “showdown” with FCS #1 Mercer. The Bears showed no mercy by shutting out Point and await a similar fate in Tuscaloosa next weekend.
Georgia: Based on 2020 values, the Bulldogs posted the best win with its 10-3 defeat of Clemson. The Tigers have made the CFP six straight years but must win out to extend their streak to seven. Georgia hosts UAB next weekend. Alabama at Birmingham is not Alabama at Tuscaloosa, but it will be interesting to see if the 2020 Conference USA Champions can hang with the Bulldogs.
FCS over FBS: Six FCS teams posted wins over FBS competition including Montana posting the fifth ever FCS win over a ranked FBS team. If these teams hold serve next weekend, they should dominate the Week 2 top ten in the FCS.
Go for it!: Perhaps, I’m alone in my thinking here, but I do not understand why it is almost certain that teams will kick a FG to go up by six rather than go for a game clinching first down or touchdown in late game situations. Both Iowa State and Montana had goal to go inside the five, but each opted to take the three points rather than go for the clinching score. If they fail, a touchdown still beats them, but it is 95 yards away. Sure, a FG ties the game and likely forces OT, but I’ll trade that possibility for winning the game now provided the distance to gain is reasonable.
Vanderbilt vs. Colorado State: If not for Connecticut, this game between two FCS victims would likely be for 130th place.
Targeting: I do not want to see anyone seriously hurt, but I hate this rule. I cannot stand to see players ejected from games when there was clearly no malicious intent. All too often it seems like the defensive player is expected to know where his opponent’s head will be in a fraction of a second after he starts his motion to tackle. Subsequently, the defensive player is severely punished for incidental helmet-to-helmet contact where the offensive player is just as guilty for lowering his head as he braces for impact. Isn’t it reflexive for everyone to duck when anticipating a violent collision?
Penn State vs. Wisconsin: I never understood why fans complain about games like these. Each game has its own personality and defensive battles are every bit as exciting as shootouts. I did not hear or see anyone complain about the low scoring battle between Georgia and Clemson.
Connecticut: Why not let Geno coach the remainder of the season?
UCF: I count myself among those who think the Golden Knights got a raw deal in 2017. This does mean I think they should have been selected for the playoffs although I would be happy to make their case, but rather that being ranked 12th by the committee was criminal. Therefore, I enjoyed the fact that their comeback win spoiled the fun their critics were having at their expense when things looked bleak. I despise the two class system that exists within the FBS, but at least it appears UCF will become a P5 program if a reported invite to the Big 12 proves true.
MOV: Although a handful of teams have played two games, most have only played one game and the week one standings mostly favor teams with the largest victory margins. A blowout win versus a bad team will ultimately be much less valuable than a close win versus a good team. Net Points, the third tiebreaker, has only been needed to break a tie four times in 43 FBS seasons through regular season competition.