Yes, it’s getting real now as the College Football Playoff Committee’s first poll was released Tuesday night. I think the Clemson Tigers, as usual, are unwanted, considered unworthy to be in the Top 4. This isn’t anything unusual for Dabo Swinney and company, they just say next up! As for the some of the teams included in the CFP Top 25 (Clemson included) this is where the rubber meets the road. I know, there are more games on the slate this weekend so I’ll just keep quiet about my favorite team. Hang on, let’s get down to predicting.
No. 21 Wake Forest at No. 22 NC State
This is the battle for third place in the ACC Atlantic division, yes, it’s kind of sad. For both teams, their fans and the strength of the conference. There was so much hype, so much hope invested in these teams but they both met a steamrolling Tiger team and their path to glory was upended.
As Wake Forest travels to Raleigh to face an humbled Wolfpack squad that is minus their all-star quarterback, Devin Leary who had a season ending injury, I think this might be the tipping point for the Demon Deacons. It should be a good game but the ultimate loser in this one, NC State.
#18 Oklahoma State at Kansas
Mike Gundy and his Oklahoma State Cowboys were riding high until recently and so were the Kansas Jayhawks. Very much like the situation that Wake Forest and NC State are facing, this game is played for pride and a lower tier Bowl Game.
However, looking at Kansas and their early season success, there is hope for the future. The Cowboys are the better team in this match-up but I’m a believer in the Jayhawks. Lucky Luke’s Loser, Oklahoma State.
No.20 Syracuse at Pitt
The dirtiest team in the conference, Syracuse, plays the nastiest coach in the conference, Pat Narduzzi. Both Dino Babers and Narduzzi are notorious for their undisciplined teams and honestly, these two teams deserve each other on Saturday in Pittsburgh.
I’m a nice guy that dislikes bullies, dirty and nasty. So, not going to mince words, I’m sure being dirty will be more notorious than just being nasty, the loser in this one, Pitt.
No. 6 Alabama at No. 10 LSU
Speaking of rubber meeting the road, this game is vital for the salvaging effort of these teams postseason plans. Nick Saban finds himself back in Baton Rouge after having coached there, won a National Championship there, only to leave and eventually end up at Bama. Cajuns have long memories and loud mouths.
It’s kinda sad, if Alabama isn’t number one in the polls. Like another team I knew last season, they’re disparaged, discounted. Sadness aside, I believe Tiger Stadium will prove too much for this year’s Crimson Tide team. Luke’s Loser, in a close game, Alabama.
No. 2 Ohio State at Northwestern
In this one, there’s no rubber to meet any road. Heck, there’s not even a road to travel. The Buckeyes will be like a flying cat, a fast car. It’s criminal, this schedule for Ohio State. Laughable and disturbing, at least to me.
So, when schedules, records and worthiness of any team comes in question, remember the Buckeyes and roll your eyes, I will. The painfully obvious Loser in this massacre, Northwestern.
No. 1 Tennessee at No. 3 Georgia
This is the game that really exemplifies the rubber meets the road mantra. Both teams are in search of being crowned the king of the SEC. There is one thing that I’ll say about this matchup, Tennessee is a fraud and an interloper. They can score but they can be scored on, and easily. Ultimately, they aren’t invincible.
Like the old Professor taught me, there are three important factors in winning close games…location, location, location. Don’t forget this game is being played in the Sanford Stadium Junkyard and I doubt the Volunteer rifleman can hold their firing lines against a vicious Dawg assault. My loser in this one, Tennessee.
No. 4 Clemson at Notre Dame
The Clemson Tigers can quiet the doubters, the naysayers and the hater by going into South Bend and soundly whipping the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. But there are questions, nagging questions.
Which offense will show up for Dabo Swinney? Hopefully, the good, crisp, dominating one but that’ll have to be witnessed. However, there is another key to an almost assured Tiger victory, stopping the run. Period. If they do, and I believe they will, the unlucky loser in this contest will be, Notre Dame.
I don’t know about you folks, but this is a huge week in foretelling the rest of the season. There is a lot on the line and tempers will be tested but as fans, we need to let the Boys work it out on the field. It’s going to be fun so, stay safe, stay focused on a Tiger Victory and always stay (the right shade) of Orange. Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see you next week.
Clemson and Notre Dame have released depth charts ahead of this weekend’s matchup at Death Valley.
For the second time this season, Clemson will be an underdog at home.
Despite Clemson’s astonishing loss to Miami, the Tigers will head to Raleigh next week favored over NC State.