Tuck: Styles Make Fights

Usually a term referring to boxing matches, it would apply quite well to the most desirable college football BCS Title Game.  Oregon’s offense versus Alabama’s defense.  The Ducks up-tempo against the Crimson Tide’s slow methodical pace.  The Duck’s flashy uniforms opposed the the most basic old-school design outside of Happy Valley in Alabama.  The deep south against the far west.  And of course someone, anyone else, taking on the SEC.

So sorry to K-State and Notre Dame, who are both equally worthy of playing in the BCS Title Game, but the humans, the voters, will not be changing their minds.  We want to see the most opposite teams collide.  It is the most compelling and best story.  Damn the schedules and anything else that says otherwise.

Who wouldn’t want to find out the answer to the question everyone brings up in the constant, head-banging argument in college football: Would Oregon score like they do against a SEC defense or could Alabama’s defense handle a real offense?

I always laugh at the first question as if everyone in the SEC plays defense like Alabama.  Have you seen Auburn, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Missouri, or Arkansas play?  Heck, I thought all the SEC folks said Texas A&M, a middle of the road Big XII team previous, would get worked over by SEC defenses.  Somebody forgot to tell the 7-2 Aggies that.  Yes, Florida, LSU, South Carolina, and Georgia are all very good, but acting as if the whole conference plays on a level that the rest of the nation can’t keep pace with is a silly, silly thought.  And pretending as if they all play each other is also a major oversight.  Just check out Georgia’s schedule.  Not exactly murderers row, eh?

Also, it appears pretty obvious Bama could match-up against any offense and do well.  That track record speaks for itself.  But the previously pedestrian Zach Mettenberger just tossed for nearly 300 yards against them, so it does raise questions.

The real answer is both teams would rip through the other’s conference because they are that good.  Against each other?  That would be a treat to see.  Oregon still has to beat Oregon State, Stanford, and win the Pac-12 Title Game while Alabama still has to beat Texas A&M and win the SEC Title Game for us to find out who is better, and which style would win out.

1. Kansas State
2. Alabama
3. Notre Dame
4. Oregon
5. Ohio State
6. Oregon State
7. FSU
8. Georgia
9. Florida
10. Clemson
11. Louisville
12. LSU
13. Texas A&M
14. UCLA
15. South Carolina
16. Louisiana Tech
17. Nebraska
18. Oklahoma
19. Stanford
20. Texas
21. Toledo
22. Ohio
23. Texas Tech
24. Arizona
25. Oklahoma State

– Yes, K-State still deserves to be in the top spot based on who they have beaten and how they have beaten them.

– Incredible stat: Kansas State has scored 111 points off turnovers and its opponents have scored zero.

– Notre Dame didn’t get passed by Alabama in my pole because of how they won, it had to do with the Tide’s schedule now looking to be the equal of the Irish’s after the Tide’s win in Baton Rouge.  But boy, ND was lucky.  Then again, the Tide weren’t without a little luck themselves.

– The Irish are 5-0 in one-score games in 2012.  They were a mere 4-6 in Brian Kelly’s first two seasons.

– USF fans will have a lot of opinions on the career of QB BJ Daniels, which is now over after he broke his ankle this weekend, but I will always remember the win in Doak Campbell as a signature moment.

– Just like a year ago, Gary Patterson goes for the win.  TCU went for two and the victory at Boise State last year and did it again this weekend in overtime in Morgantown against West Virginia.  I’ve always thought, if you have a play you like, then why not take the 50-50 shot when you can control the outcome.  Aggressiveness was rewarded for the Horned Frogs.

– Why you should always pause when someone says they pass the “eyeball test.”  Weren’t the Mountaineers a top five team based on the eyeball test about a month ago?  Just sayin’.

– Yes, the Miami Hurricanes now just need either a win over Duke in the final week of the season, OR a win this week at Virginia and a Georgia Tech win over Duke to win the Coastal.  If you are the Canes, do the right thing and play in the ACC Title Game and give these kids a chance at an Orange Bowl.  Worry about bowl bans in the offseason.

– You think Miami playing in the ACC Championship would be incredible?  It will be small fries next to Indiana playing in the Big Ten Title Game.  The Hoosiers control their own destiny and will take the biggest step to the impossible dream if they beat Wisconsin this upcoming weekend at home.

– The Gators now need Auburn to beat Georgia to get them to Atlanta.  Seems like it would be more likely that I grow a tail, bark, and eat my own poop before that happens.



1. QB Collin Klein, Kansas State- Wildcats QB got hurt, but should be okay for this week according to his mom.

2. RB Kenjon Barner, Oregon- Yep, just like that.  After 321 total yards and 5 touchdowns against USC you could see why.  Plus, Ducks beat writer Rob Moseley points out that if Barner played at his pace all season and not sat out second halves, he’d be at 2317 yards rushing right now.  He was nearly untouchable on Saturday night.

3. QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M- Of the numerous things he has done this year, the latest is his third 300yd passing-100yd rushing game this year which is the most by a quarterback since 2000.

4. LB Manti Te’o, Notre Dame- He is in the middle of everything good about the Irish this season.

5. WR Marqise Lee, USC- The sophomore is the best receiver in the nation, and arguably the best weapon too.

6. QB Braxton Miller, Ohio State- Buckeyes aren’t unbeaten without him.  In fact, they probably would have lost 3 or 4 times.

7. DE Jadaveon Clowny, South Carolina- The most dominant defensive player in America, and has made some big plays to win games (see Tennessee).

8. QB AJ McCarron, Alabama- The final drive against LSU will push him higher on most ballots, but trying to argue he is the best or most valuable player in America will fall on deaf ears.  The mention should be plenty.

9. LB Jarvis Jones, Georgia- Was most regrettable omission off last week’s list.

10. WR Terrance Williams, Baylor- The numbers he puts up week after week are spectacular.  He is a legit player too, not just a numbers whore.