One of the biggest jokes in college football is the lack of true road games the big boys play. Money is the #1 factor behind that, but don’t think it isn’t a big advantage to have 8 home, 4 away or 7 home, 5 away for these big schools. How big?
Consider that SEC teams are 19-1 at home this year. (Ole Miss beat Vandy in Nashville)
They are 1-4 on the road this year. (Georgia losing at Clemson, South Carolina losing at Georgia, Florida losing at Miami, and UK losing at WKU).
They are 2-1 at neutral sites with Alabama beating Virginia Tech, LSU defeating TCU, and Mississippi State losing to Oklahoma State.
It’s treacherous to travel. Only bad things can happen. 1. You lose money. 2. You can lose. 3. You can lose more money if you need that win to be bowl eligible.
Sadly, it’s part of the reality of the sport. The point isn’t to pick on the SEC, but to illustrate that even the mighty SEC can be vulnerable if they have to go on the road. Some teams are willing to bank on neutral site games, and will stick with some non-conference traditional rivals, but for most the risk isn’t worth the reward.
Naturally, the fans lose out.
The rankings remain pretty tricky this early. Going off the best win, or wins, and attempting to factor in levels of domination over mostly inferior foes is pretty much the pattern. Was torn what to do with and where to place the Dawgs and Cocks. Doesn’t matter much admittedly this early in the season. Bye weeks early also distract from the bigger picture.
7. Oklahoma State
14. Texas A&M
15. Ole Miss
17. Ohio State
18. Fresno State
21 .South Carolina
25. Georgia Tech
– The Hurricanes were the equal to Florida physically in the first half, and capitalized on the Gators errors in a 21-16 victory. I believe it is more of a feel-good win than it is actually a turning point win. The Gators talent appeared superior, especially in the 2nd half when they completely dominated the Miami offense, but the Canes made some big plays and allowed/helped the Gators beat themselves. For those keeping track, the all-time series ends (?) with the Hurricanes on top 29-26, and winners of 7 of the last 8 games.
– I said the floor for Florida was 6-6. This team looks more like the one from 2 seasons ago.
– The SEC East runs through Athens it appears after Georgia knocked off the Gamecocks between the hedges. Aaron Murray was fantastic after a week everyone wanted to talk about his record in big games. If the Dawgs beat LSU at home at the end of the month, it’d be almost impossible to imagine South Carolina catching up.
– Having two quarterbacks can work. Ask South Carolina last year. Or Northwestern now. Problem is if you are USC and neither guy can play and combine for 54 yards and throw a pick-6 in a 10-7 loss to Wazzu. That really happened. Lane Kiffin is in deep trouble.
– So let me get this straight. Oregon ravaged Virginia for 59 points in what was a sloppy game for them on Saturday. BYU had 187 (just 3.5 yards per carry) in a 19-16 loss at Virginia last week. And Texas gave up 41 points and 550 rushing yards to the Cougars this week. What would happen if Texas played Oregon??? Mack Brown fired his defensive coordinator. His less than graceful retirement may follow if they don’t get it turned around fast.
– McNeese State scored 53 at USF. Michigan State produced 14 offensive points in a 21-6 home win over the Bulls. What would McNeese State do against Sparty?
– Devin Gardner and Jeremy Gallon were spectacular in Michigan’s win over Notre Dame. What happened to the Irish defense?
– Bad injury week for quarterbacks. TCU’s Casey Pachall broke his arm and will most of the season. Cincinnati’s Munchie Legaux is likely lost for the year with a nasty leg injury. And Ohio State’s Braxton Miller was knocked out in the first quarter of their win with a MCL injury, which isn’t deemed to be serious.