Weekend Review – Sparty, Bama, LSU, OU, Luck

Here’s our review of the top games of the weekend.

#3 Oklahoma 38 vs Texas Tech 41 – Oklahoma’s defense gets lit up

Oklahoma was a 30 point favorite over the Red Raiders of Texas Tech, and while everyone thought the game was going to be a blowout, Tommy Tuberville had other plans. The Riverboat Gambler did just that, he gambled several times during the game and a few times it looked like it was going to cost his team badly, but each time his defense stepped up and made a crucial stop.

Both quarterbacks threw the ball more than 50 times. Doege had 33 completions in 52 attempts for a total of 441 yards, 4 touchdowns, and no interceptions. His foe Landry Jones had 30 completions in 55 attempts for 412 yards, 5 touchdowns, and 1 interception.

That one interception for Jones came late in the 3rd quarter when the Sooners were down 31 to 14, and it looked like the game was over, but Oklahoma and Jones came out throwing in the 4th and Jones had three touchdown drives and a field goal drive that hit the upright.

The Oklahoma defense gave up an unbelievable amount of yards to Missouri earlier in the season and people began to have doubts about the Sooners D, but then they played Texas and destroyed them and everything was all fine and dandy. Fast forward to Texas Tech, the Sooners defense gave up 572 yards to the Red Raiders last night. If there’s anything we’ve learned over the last five years of SEC BCS domination, it’s that defenses win championships, and it appears like Oklahoma doesn’t have one.

Don’t bet on Oklahoma to be in the BCS Championship game.

#8 Stanford 65 vs #25 Washington 21 – Suck for Luck Will Continue

Andrew Luck and the Stanford Cardinals have something to prove out there on the West Coast. Luck destroyed the Huskies defense, which isn’t very good in the first place, ranked 101st overall in total defense, for a total of 615 yards. If you didn’t have Andrew Luck at the top of your Heisman list, you may want to move him up there because he is taking over.

#16 Michigan State 37  vs #6 Wisconsin 31 – Sparty wins on a Hail Mary

Wow, what a game in East Lansing. No one could have drawn up a better ending, in my opinion.

Wisconsin came out swinging in the first quarter with a passing touchdown from Russell Wilson and a rushing touchdown by Montee Ball. Michigan State a slow start, but when the second quarter started the game took a huge swing in momentum as Sparty tackled Russell Wilson in the endzone for a safety. Cousins then led Sparty down the field three more times in the second quarter and built up a 23 to 14 point lead going into half.

After half, both teams defenses stepped up and the only points scored in the third quarter were from Wisconsin’s Phillip Welch on a 33 yard field goal to make it a 23 to 17 game.

To be fair, Russell Wilson did not look very impressive all the way through the third quarter. Wilson threw two interceptions to Sparty and made several poor decisions that could have led to turnovers. Wilson ended up finishing the game 14 for 21 with 223 yards and 2 TDs to go with the 2 INTs. Wilson’s Heisman season is now a little bit in question with Andrew Luck’s performance tonight.

The fourth quarter was the best part of this whole game. Michigan State ended up with the ball on the 44  yardline with 4 seconds left in the game. Barely out of range of their field goal kickers range of 50, Sparty had only one choice, Hail Mary. Cousins heaved the ball into the endzone, where it was batted out by Wisconsin defenders. No big deal right? Except that it was batted back across the goal line to Michigan State player Keith Nichol, who then fought for all of Sparta to cross the goal line. The play was originally ruled to be short of the line and it looked like OT was inevitable, but Nichol was so close to the line that the booth reviewed the play and determined that he did cross the plane with the ball.

Sparty was victorious!

37-31

Bigger picture from @bubbaprog

#2 Alabama 37 vs Tennessee 6 – Bama Rolls

The Crimson Tide had a very very very slow start against former Saban assistant Derek Dooley and his Vols. Dooley and the Vols held the Tide to 6 points in the first half, their lowest first half total of the season and the first time they haven’t been leading when heading into the lockerroom at half.

Of course this would make Tennessee fans happy and Bama fans nervous right? Nah, pretty much the whole country knew what was coming in the second half, a slaughter. Saban must have had a better half-time speech than Dooley, because Tennessee came out flat and Bama came out looking for LSU. Poor Matt Simms couldn’t get anything going in the second half, not that his first half was spectacular, but it was definitely better than the second half.

Alabama’s AJ McCarron looked like a solid quarterback in the second half, but his first half was a little shakey. McCarron threw an INT and 2 TDs and was 17 for 26 for 284 yards. McCarron will have to do better than 1 INT against the LSU Tiger defense in two weeks, the Tigers have been very good off of turnovers and will be looking to get into McCarron’s head early on.

Trent Richardson had 17 carries and averaged 4.5 yards a carry, which seems like a little less than we are used to seeing from him. He only had 77 yards total. This makes the second time this season that Richardson hasn’t had over 100 yards in a game, the first came against Kent St in the Tide’s first game of the season.

Alabama won 37-6

Now everyone can focus on the one thing that has been garnering attention since both teams started off 3-0, the meeting in Bryant Denny Stadium in two weeks.

We’ll save our predictions for next week!

#1 LSU 45 vs #20 Auburn 10 – LSU gets payback

LSU and Auburn met in what could only be described as “They Synthetic Game”. Both teams started out slowly, but eventually the dominant LSU team showed up, and dominate they did.  LSU decided to show up in their new slick Nike Pro Combat jerseys.

Having their leading rusher, Spencer Ware, their Heisman candidate corner Tyrann Mathieu and their number 2 corner Tharold Simon all suspended for, allegedly testing positive for synthetic marijuana, didn’t seem to bother the Tigers one bit. Senior corner Ron Brooks stepped right in to replace Mathieu and did so very well. Brooks made several key plays for the Tigers, the most important was an interception of Auburn’s quarterback Clint Mosely that he returned for a touchdown to put the LSU Tigers up 41-3 and the game even further out of Auburn’s reach.

LSU seemed to be able to do what Auburn couldn’t, score. LSU’s Rueben Randle caught touchdown passes from both Jarrett Lee (46 yards) and Jordan Jefferson (42 yards).  Randle is a big receiver, who will be a top round draft pick. Randle finished the game with 5 catches for 106 yards and 2 TDs.

LSU also had running backs step up and replace the suspended Spencer Ware. Michael Ford (82 yards) got the bulk of the carries for the Tigers, but Kenny Hilliard also stepped in and had 10 carries and two touchdowns. Hilliard seemed to be the exact replacement for Ware that the Tigers needed. A big bruising back, Hilliard was tough to bring down and should prove useful for the Tigers in their next game against Alabama.

The most important part of the game for the LSU Tigers though, was the quarterback play behind Jarrett Lee. Lee led the Tigers down the field several times, and finished the game 14/20 with 165 yards and 2 TDs. Jordan Jefferson did see some playing time, but was unable to get the option run game going like he has been known to do in the past. He did have one TD pass to Randle and finished 2/3 with 54 yards. The fact that Jefferson can enter the game and throw a deep pass to one of the Tigers many receivers seems to sit well with LSU coach Les Miles. Knowing that the next game will be the most physical and mentally tough game that the Tigers will have to play all season, Miles feels confident that he has two quarterbacks that can lead the Tigers if Lee ends up having to come out of the game early on November 5th.

LSU won the game 45-10, giving up a very late touchdown to Auburn.

Now we are watching the Alabama Crimson Tide play the Tennessee Volunteers. At the time this is being written, Tennessee and Alabama are tied at 6-6.