Mary Knows Football: Week 8
USC @ Notre Dame: USC
This isn’t the most relevant matchup anymore, but if you know any Trojan or Lying Irish fans, you know this is a bitter rivalry. Hatred is always fun. The Golden Domers, 4-2 and coming off a bye week, are foaming at the mouth to get their hands on a supposedly sanction-decimated USC squad. USC comes into South Bend with a 5-1 record, but has yet to defeat a ranked opponent. The key to this game is how well each defense’s secondaries perform, as both Ds are good at stopping the run and both offenses are primarily aerial. USC needs to be careful because Notre Shame has found its offense with QB Tommy Rees and WR Michael “I’m not drunk, occifer” Floyd and USC’s secondary ranked 105th in the nation, giving up 271 passing yards per game (Notre Lame averages 273 passing yards per game). Meanwhile, the Crying Irish need to watch out for USC QB Matt Barkley, who is completing nearly 70% of his passes and has thrown 16 TDs to just 4 INTs. The Trojans are throwing for nearly 300 yards per game (8 per attempt) and Barkley’s favorite target is WR Robert Woods who has 60 catches thus far this season. Ultimately, I think Barkley and Woods will capitalize on the Irish secondary’s vulnerability against the deep pass and the Trojan’s defense (who forced 5 turnovers against Cal last Thursday) will slow down Rees and Floyd.
20 Auburn @ 1 LSU: LSU
Remember when Auburn won a national championship? Wait, that was just last year? Wow; Cam really WAS worth every penny. As any of us who were cheering on the Tigers against the dirty crocs last weekend know, Auburn is um. . . not good. It’s called an offense. Look into it. You know what you get when you put one of the worst offenses in college football against the best defense? You got it. A shut out in Death Valley. Word is out that the Honey Badgder, Tyrann Mathieu, is suspended from this game for failing a drug test (I guess he literally does “take what he wants”), which is a shame because I think he could have taken that War Eagle and make it into a nice hat to match his “now and later gator shoes” that he skinned off Jacoby Brissett 2 weeks ago. Either way, this one will get ugly in a hurry and I think you know both teams enough by now (LSU’s offense can run, Auburn can’t stop that) that I don’t need to go into the gory details.
6 Wisconsin @ 16 Michigan State: Michigan State
Wisconsin (6-0, 2-0 Big Ten) is off to its best start since 2004, including leading the nation with an average of 50.2 points while the Badgers’ 523.2 ypg offense ranks 8th. Earlier this week when I thought the Badgers had been robbed with their No. 6 ranking, EOTH blogger Six quickly reminded me about who their opponents have been thus far. Nebraska is the only ranked team Wisconsin has seen, and every game has taken place in Madison with the exception of a 49-7 victory over Northern Illinois (safe to say that game was in the bag before they took the field). Meanwhile, the Spartans are just coming off the defeat of their bitter rivals, former No. 11 Michigan, against whom their No. 2 ranked defense registered SEVEN sacks. The Spartan D has a total of 21 sacks, 8 INTs, and only yields 180 yards per game. Look for the Badger offense and Heisman hopeful QB Russell Wilson to all the sudden not look so all-world anymore. Moreover, the yet-to-be-tested Badger defense will have to contend with Kirk Cousins, who is completing 65.9 percent of his passes for 1,317 yards with eight touchdowns and four INTs, and RB Edwin Baker, who is coming off his best performance of the season, rushing for 167 yards and a touchdown on 26 attempts against Michigan. Look for Wisconsin to have a big let-down game in East Lansing.
22 GA Tech @ Miami: M – I – A – M – I FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT!
I don’t think I’ve been this excited for a home game since . . . oh, wait, a month ago against the suckeyes! I forget how much I live for ‘Canes football until it is (sort of) taken away from me for two weeks because I had to throw the game watches in Palm Beach county instead of being live at the game. In this time away from my love, Jacory has really started to inspire confidence and the offense is gelling. The defense is . . . well, I think they are improving. However, Miami’s ability to stop the run was delivered a [low] blow today when Golden announced that Micanor “the ball crusher” Regis would be suspended for his [caught on camera] punch to a UNC player’s groin. Now at DT the ‘Canes have Ojomo and some dudes most of you didn’t know played for Miami. The silver lining is that Olivier Vernon is BACK. I’m optimistic that Ojomo and crew can handle the runs down the middle and Vernon can take care of the outside . . . unless they run the ball on the side Vernon is not on [plugs ears, sings “lalalala”and thinks happy thoughts]. It doesn’t look particularly good for our defense, but I have a good feeling that we end up outscoring them. Look forward to a shoot-out on Saturday, ‘Canes fans . . . and GET YOUR @$$ TO THE STADIUM AND SUPPORT OUR TEAM! #FREEREGIS