No doubt about it: LSU is number one
With the College Football Playoff poll in its second week, there is no doubt that LSU is the best team in the land. The Tigers’ 46-41 win at Alabama gives them the number one ranking in all the polls.
At the end of the regular season four teams will be in the playoffs and right now, LSU looks like a lock for one of those four spots.
Clemson started the season ranked No. 1, but their weak schedule and near miss at UNC had dropped them to the fifth position in the first CFP. With both Alabama and Penn State losing over the weekend, Clemson is back up to No. 3 and will be a shoo-in for one of the spots.
That leaves Ohio State, a heavy favorite for the third spot and one wild card to complete the Final Four. The two “leaders” for that spot right now are Alabama, who could get in, or Georgia. To be the fourth team, Georgia has to win at Auburn Saturday — no small feat — then beat Texas A&M the next week. If the Bulldogs win out, and upset LSU in the SEC Championship game, they are in. Fearless says that is a tall order for any team and thinks it is a long shot at best.
In the ACC, Virginia’s close win over Georgia Tech has them two games ahead in the Coastal Division, which they should win. Over in the stronger division, the Atlantic, Clemson is the champion and will get to beat the living daylights out of Virginia in the ACC title tilt in three weeks. There is really no use in having a championship game. Just give the trophy to Clemson and save the trouble of staging the game.
Time to set up the board and toss the magic darts to predict whozza gonna win this weekend’s games.
WAKE FOREST at CLEMSON: Wake Forest might be the league’s third-best team, but they are about a hundred miles south of Clemson in talent. Proving the rest of the ACC is a bunch of cupcakes, it’s.......Clemson 56, Wake Forest 10.
VIRGINIA TECH at GEORGIA TECH: Two teams that are improving each week. The Hokies have come a long way since losing at home to Furman. Ditto for the Jackets, who lost at home to The Citadel early in the year. Neither of these teams is a world beater, but progress counts for something. Virginia Tech should get a minor bowl bid at the end of the season. This could be an upset, and Fearless thinks it is close. Virginia Tech 27, Georgia Tech 24.
SYRACUSE at DUKE: Syracuse was ranked in the pre-season polls. And now, after four straight losses, they are the worst team in the ACC. The Blue Devils have dropped three in a row and need this game and one more to get a bowl bid. For them it is survive and advance. Close, Fearless gives it to....Duke 27, Syracuse 23.
LOUISVILLE at N.C. STATE: After a slow start, the Cardinals had big wins over Wake Forest and Virginia. But a beat down at Miami left them scratching their heads. Still, they are facing an N.C. State team in total freefall. The Wolfpack started the season 3-1, but in the last three games, all losses, State has given up 144 points. “Given up” make be the key phrase here, and Coach Dave Doeren has lost everything he built up the two previous seasons when the Pack won 18 games. If State loses this one, they will wind up the season at 4-8. That record would doom the coach at many schools. Louisville 42, N. C. State 24.
NORTH CAROLINA at PITT: The Tar Heels are 4-5, and with Mercer and State remaining, should be a lock for some bowl bid. But a win here will give them a slightly better trip. Pitt’s resume looks a little better than the Heels and at 6-3, they will play in the postseason. The only thing Fearless is sure of is this will be a real close game — either way. It’s even. Pitt 27, North Carolina 24,
OTHER MAJOR GAMES THIS WEEKEND: Georgia over Auburn (toss-up), LSU over Mississippi, Alabama over Mississippi State, Penn State over Indiana, Florida over Missouri, Wisconsin over Nebraska, Notre Dame over Navy, Army over VMI, Ohio State over Rutgers (by 70?), Iowa over Minnesota (upset special), Appalachian over Georgia State, Oklahoma over Baylor (even), Texas A&M over South Carolina, Oregon over Arizona, and Utah over UCLA.
TOFF TOP TEN: 1. LSU 2. Ohio State 3. Clemson 4. Alabama 5. Georgia 6. Oregon 7. Minnesota 7. Minnesota 8. Utah 9. Oklahoma 10. Baylor.
Southeast Sports Syndicate, 2019