Sunday Morning Wrapup – Week 8

If you wanted a shakeup in the Top 25, this was your week.  Teams ranked 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 15,  20, and 22 all lost. AS ESPN’s Brett McMurphy put it:

Winners – Florida State, Baylor, Miami, Duke

The Florida State-Clemson game was billed as perhaps the best conference game in ACC history. #5 would being playing #3, and College GameDay was there to add another degree of pageantry. Florida State came prepared and ready for battle; it was s shame Clemson decided not to show up. You could tell it was going to be that type of game for Clemson when the Tigers fumbled it on their opening possession and it took only three ensuing plays for Florida State to score. This game as over before the first quarter even ended, as Mario Edwards Jr. recovered a Tajh Boyd fumbled and returned it 37 yards for a touchdown to put the Noles up 17-0. They would never look back on their way to a 51 – 14 victory. With the win, they very well might be the #2 team in the nation when the first BCS Standings come out tonight.

Baylor continues to roll, winning their 10th consecutive game (dating back to last season) and crushing Iowa State 71 – 7. Somehow, the Bears were ranked only 12th in the AP Poll last week; with all of the upsets concurring this week, look for that number to jump significantly, perhaps into the Top 5.

The #10 Canes looked like the worse team nearly all of Thursday night against North Carolina, and it took a last minute drive to beat the Tarheels 27 – 23, so you wouldn’t expect them to end up in the winner’s area of this blog. But with all of the other Top 10 teams being upset and losing this week, the Canes are going to fall up, probably into a Top 5 spot. It’ll make their matchup against Florida State in a few weeks all the more compelling. They’ll be annihilated, most assuredly, but at least the events and trash talk by both fanbases leading up to the game will be entertaining.

And we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the Duke Blue Devils defeating the Virginia Cavaliers 35 – 22. Although a matchup of mediocre ACC teams, the win gives Duke its fifth win of the year – only one victory away from bowl eligibility. And although Virginia Tech, Miami, and UNC are in front of them, so are NC State and Wake Forest, so they have a chance!

Losers – Louisville, the SEC

For #8 Louisville to even be in the discussion for the national championship game, they were going to have to run the table and win each of their games solidly. Any loss would knock them out of the running. Alas, a loss is exactly what they suffered at the hands of George O’Leary’s UCF Knights on Friday. The Cardinals were up 28-7 in the 3rd quarter, but the Knights scored 24 consecutive points en route to a 38 – 35 home upset of Charlie Strong’s team. Not only did the loss eliminate any shot Louisville had of making the national championship game, it may have also ended any shot they had at making a BCS Bowl. By virtue of their victory over the Cardinals, the Knights have a two game lead over Louisville in the American. UCF doesn’t have to play Cincinnati either this year, making their path to the AAC’s at-large spot all the easier.

The SEC was one of our big winners last week; for the first time in AP Poll history, eight teams came from one conference. The conference was riding high. Then yesterday happened. Of the six preseason favorites to win their division, five lost yesterday. #22 Florida lost to #14 Mizzou, #15 Georgia lost to Vanderbilt, #11 South Carolina lost to Tennessee, #7 Texas A&M lost to #24 Auburn, and #6 LSU lost to Ole Miss. For the casual fan, this was great; the underdogs beat the favorites. For the conference as a whole though, several teams eliminated themselves from the national title conversation, and only three teams can win their respective division in the SEC now: Mizzou, Alabama (both undefeated), and Auburn (who already has one loss but plays Alabama at the end of the year). Everyone laughed when a few people said that the SEC East goes through Columbia, Mizzouri this year, but they were right. If the Gamecocks lose to the Tigers next week, consider Mizzou’s ticket to Atlanta for the SEC Championship game all but punched.

Top 25 Upsets

  • #5 Florida State over #3 Clemson, 51 – 14
  • Ole Miss over #6 LSU, 27 – 24
  • #24 Auburn over #7 Texas A&M, 45-41
  • UCF over #8 Louisville, 38 – 35.
  • #13 Stanford over #9 UCLA, 24 – 10
  • Tennessee over #11 South Carolina, 23 – 21
  • Vanderbilt over #15 Georgia, 31 – 27
  • Arizona State over #20 Washington, 53 – 24

A Look Ahead

The pickings are slim next week, but we’re well into October, so don’t discount any team from being upset. That being said, the most compelling matchups will be UCLA-Oregon (where GameDay is going next week), Texas Tech-Oklahoma, and South Carolina-Missouri, in a game that very well may decide the SEC East (just as we all predicted). Penn State plays Ohio State under the lights.

BCS Standings

1 Alabama 7-0
2 Florida State 6-0
3 Oregon 7-0
4 Ohio State 7-0
5 Missouri 7-0
6 Stanford 6-1
7 Miami (FL) 6-0
8 Baylor 6-0
9 Clemson 6-1
10 Texas Tech 7-0
11 Auburn 6-1
12 UCLA 5-1
13 LSU 6-2
14 Virginia Tech 6-1
15 Oklahoma 6-1
16 Texas A&M 5-2
17 Fresno State 6-0
18 Northern Illinois 7-0
19 Oklahoma State 5-1
20 Louisville 6-1
21 South Carolina 5-2
22 Michigan 6-1
23 UCF 5-1
24 Nebraska 5-1
25 Oregon State 6-1
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