What to watch this weekend (Oct. 10-12)

 

It’s always a spectacle in the South when football kicks into full gear but this weekend is particularly big.  And by big, I mean HUGE!  The three conference powers all grace the gridiron, including a highly anticipated game between two unbeatens.  It’s also a important weekend in the Big Ten as the top four teams confront one another.  The NFL slate has six of its best going head-to-head as well as a crucial Monday matchup in between two division rivals.  For those of you who don’t dig on pigskin, baseball playoffs have officially commenced, as well.

 

W Kentucky Tennessee FootballGeorgia at Tennessee – (Saturday, 12:20 pm – ESPN – UT minus 1.5)

Athens is still bitter over last week’s controversial loss that may have been swayed by a late excessive celebration whistle.  This week, Georgia looks for redemption in the land of the Kiffins: Knoxville, TN.  Lane and company are still adjusting to life in the Southeastern Conference, awaiting their first win.  While Tennessee is likely out of the SEC East race, Georgia can keep its hopes alive with a win this weekend along with a victory over Florida on Halloween.  The UGA-UT matchup, which is always a great game, serves as an appetizer for the other two more crucial conference matchups later that day.

 

jevan-snead(3) Alabama at (20) Ole Miss – (Saturday, 3:30 pm – CBS – Bama minus 5.5)

It wasn’t long ago that both these teams were ranked in the Top Five but a Thursday night loss at South Carolina two weeks ago knocked Ole Miss back to reality.  A victory over Alabama is a must if they want to keep their SEC West hopes alive.  Meanwhile, the Crimson Tide, who have beaten Ole Miss five straight times, continue to pile up votes as many think they’re the best team in the country.  They have yet to be challenged this season, averaging an un-Alabamalike but very Nick Saban-like 40 points per game.  If Jevan Snead wants to prove he’s the best quarterback in the SEC like Steve Spurrier voted, Saturday would be the day to start making his case. 

 

Michigan St  Wisconsin FootballWisconsin at (9) Ohio State – (Saturday, 3:30 pm – ABC – OSU minus 16.5)

The two teams atop the Big Ten square off in Columbus on Saturday in what will give the winner a huge advantage in the conference.  The Buckeyes have bounced back nicely since their mid-September loss to USC, allowing only two touchdowns in last their three games.  But then again, those games were against Toledo, Illinois and Indiana. Wisconsin’s John Clay, the conference’s leading rusher, will be put to the test against one of the nation’s best rushing defenses in what should be a classic Big Ten battle.  Although ranked ninth in the nation, this is a must home win for the one-loss Buckeyes if they want to keep any hopes of a national championship alive.

 

tate-forcier-rich-rodriguez1Michigan at (12) Iowa – (Saturday, 8:00 pm – ABC – Iowa minus 8.5)

The other key Big Ten matchup takes place in Iowa City Saturday night, though it is highly likely most football fans will be watching a slightly more important game that kicks off in the bayou around the same time.  That doesn’t mean this game isn’t important.  Undefeated Iowa is still enjoying the spoils from upsetting Penn State, even though they barely beat Arkansas State the following week.  Michigan, on the other hand, is looking to rebound from an overtime stunner in which they lost to Michigan State, 26-20.  Both teams still have to play Ohio State later this season.

 

Florida Brantley Football(1) Florida at (4) LSU – (Saturday, 8:00 pm – CBS – Florida minus 7.5)

Concussion kryptonite.   Will he play or won’t he has been college football’s most asked question since Tim Tebow got knocked out of the Kentucky game two weeks ago.  This is college football’s biggest game to date, pitting the last three national champions against each other in what will likely be Florida’s toughest test of the regular season.  Baton Rouge at night is one of the most intimidating venues in college football.  LSU has defeated their last 32 opponents under the lights, including Florida two years ago.  Tim Tebow’s status will be determined at game time.  If he’s unable to go, backup John Brantley will assume the honors of keeping Florida’s undefeated streak alive.  Although LSU still has to play Alabama later this season, this game obviously has significant national championship implications, and even more serious health concerns for college football’s poster boy.

 

ed-reed-chad-ochocincoBengals (3-1) at Ravens (3-1) – (Sunday, 1:00 pm – CBS – BAL minus 8.5)

Who would have thought Baltimore and Cincinnati, and not the Pittsburgh Steelers, would be battling for first place in the AFC North?  Even more shocking is the fact that the Bengals are a Brandon Stokely miracle reception away from being undefeated.  The Bengals have quickly gone from dysfunctional to functional and are finally starting to show their fans they can play some football.  The Ravens will be a tough road test.

 

mike-singletaryFalcons (2-1) at 49ers (3-1) – (Sunday, 4:05 pm – FOX – SF minus 2.5)

Two years ago, both these teams were abysmal.  In 2009, not so much.  Mike Singletary has injected his old school intensity into this San Francisco team and it’s translating into victories.  The Falcons became relevant again the day they drafted Matt Ryan.  Michael Crabtree finally broke his holdout but will not suit up for San Fran until after their bye week.

 

josh-mcdaniels-bill-belichickNew England (3-1) at Broncos (4-0) – (Sunday, 4:15 pm – CBS – NE minus 3.5)

The Patriots have had a difficult schedule so far but have somehow come out relatively unscathed.  They’ve already played Atlanta, Baltimore and now travel to Mile High to face the undefeated Broncos.  Denver’s head coach Josh McDaniels graduated from the Bill Belichick system, coaching under him for eight years and three Super Bowl victories.  The Patriots are favored, but secretly we’re all hoping for a Denver victory to see if Coach Belichick can break his own personal record for the shortest, post-game handshake in history.

 

Jets Saints FootballJets (3-1) at Dolphins (1-3) – (Monday, 8:30 pm – ESPN – NYJ minus 1.5)

The way Brett Favre’s been chucking it around the ballpark lately, the Dolphins have to be happy the Jets granted him his release.  Instead, the Jets start Mark Sanchez, who is about to experience his first real test of AFC East hatred: Dolphin Stadium on a Monday night.  This is one of the true great NFL rivalries where fans of these two teams genuinely despise each other.  Both Miami and New York are solid defensively and with two young starting quarterbacks, Sanchez and Henne, we could be in for a turnover fest.

25 thoughts on “What to watch this weekend (Oct. 10-12)

  1. Hey Rev,
    Saturday I will be a Vols fan for a day.
    Spurrier, for what he did as a player, was the reason I became a Gators fan. I was very disappointed in him by his vote.
    If the Gators defense rise to the occasion Saturday night they will be allright.

    GO GATORS!

  2. Man, giving love to a Miami game on your weekend watch list! Nice.. Crowder has already been talking about putting Leon Washington into the ground and says he hasn’t talked smack to Sanchez because he’s a rookie but that’s about to change. Sweet!

  3. Aer… I’ve been breaking down LSU game film all week.

    A Tebow-less Gator team can still win this game if they all play at 100%, meaning…

    offensive line continues to create holes for the backs

    backs hold on to the football and make every yard count

    defense plays tough, forces turnovers, controls Scott and keeps pressure on the QB.

  4. Donny C…

    You didn’t catch the Star Trek reference in the Georgia-LSU post? I figured you’d be digging that for sure considering you have a picture of yourself sitting in Kirk’s chair as your screensaver.

    But the sportschump universe didn’t hear that from me. I still want that picture, dog.

  5. Chris

    So it’s still a game-time decision on Tebow ? I’d still prefer that he doesn’t play even if the medical staff clears him to do so. No matter how important this game allegedly is. The player’s health should be of the utmost concern to those who really have his best interests at heart. And I’m not so sure that’s the case with many within the Gator nation.

    Purely and simply put they just want to see the Gators ‘lay the wood to the LSU Tigers’ . Merely for the bragging rights that it’ll attain.

    Alan Parkins

  6. If Tebow were a pure drop-back passer, I think most people would be okay with him playing.

    But his bulldozing style opens him up for further injury.

    Huge game but not bigger than the kid’s well-being.

    I’m sure the school will take every precaution and go with what’s best come Saturday night.

  7. Chris

    I certainly hope so for theirs and his sake ! I’d hate to think that they’d let the kid play and then he suffers a recurrence of the injury. Who’d the blame then be apportioned upon ?

    In light of Limbaugh and Checketts hoping to buy the Rams. Here’s my take on it all. Especially when one bears in mind the makeup of the NFL – in terms of personnel roster on both the coaching and players’ side of the equation.

    We Didn’t Land On Plymouth Rock Plymouth Rock Landed On Us ……Limbaugh Will Make His Mark Felt There In St Louis ……….

    Alan Parkins

  8. Alan where I come from “laying the wood” means something else….or maybe it doesn’t!

    C’mon Chris?? Hyping a Dolphins game when they are 1-3?? The Jet’s (who I hate) are going to kill them.

    Winning a LSU night game would be a tall order without Tebow but I still think the Gators are the better team.

  9. Very nice title, Al.

    Many of the players have already been outspoken about Limbaugh’s purchase. Can ya’ blame ’em?

    If I had to wager, I’d guess that Tebow at this point will not start.

  10. Seth… I knew my freakish Dolphins friend, Donny C, who commented earlier, would google the word ‘teal’ or ‘mammal’ or ‘Buffet’ over and over again and I’d get the hits I was looking. That’s the only reason I did it. Hey, we all have our price and as we know, the chump is willing to sell himself, even compromise his standards, for the everloving page view.

    Besides, it’s Monday night and the only other thing we have to do on a Monday is complain that it’s Monday.

    I agree, Seth. The Gators are better. I want to see this defense play up to it’s potential. They’re a bad bunch of dudes. If they can buy us some time until Superman gets healthy again, we should be fine.

    I’d expect some hard hitting on that side of the ball.

  11. Al… Aer’s actually been swinging by here quite frequently.

    He’s still holding out for pictures of naked girls. I keep telling him you can only find that on your site.

    Re: Tebow, I agree. It’s a can of worms the school does not want to open, not to mention we’re talking about a man’s well-being here.

  12. Forget about googling teal or mammal. How about googling SERENA WILLIAMS!!! Way to give some love to the Fins. I’ll call you when I’m half a bottle down at halftime on Monday.

  13. These games are poppin this week, Rev. Should be great watching, but I’ll be at the roundy round racing in Rockingham all weekend. May catch some football in the media center though.

    I’ll def be watching the Dolphins at ‘Landshark’ (new name Rev) Stadium come Monday night. Even though it’s still, and always will be, Joe Robbie to me.

  14. WC… Some of us made a rush on the market when they stopped selling clove cigarettes.

    Similarly, Donny C and Partykiller cornered the market when they took Zima off the shelves. They have their on personal hidden stash. Then like Elaine in Seinfeld, they determine if a moment is ‘spongeworthy’ before cracking open a bottle.

  15. Chris

    Point Aero my way and like a genie , I’ll grant his wish.

    As to the Gators Tigers game , it (game) did leave something to be desired . But at the end of the day the Gators did what was asked of them and that was to secure the win.

    Was it me but in 60 minutes of football the Browns and Bills could only muster 9 points in a game ? What sort of a diatribe is the NFL now serving up ? I mean a 6-3 game ? WTF ? Whoever spent money to witness that crap ought to be asking for their money back !

    Dropped this piece and dedicated it to you after the Sox’s loss.

    This Is For My Boy , Sportschump …………..

    As in the words of Seacrest , but with my own take …..Parkins out !

    Alan Parkins

  16. Uh Oh, Al…. is that a long distance dedication? Very nice!

    The Gator-LSU game was intense but the Gator D finally showed what they can do.

    1-for-9 third downs? 162 yards total offense? 2.2 yards per rush? Charlie Strong, man. That guy knows what he’s doing.

  17. Chris

    Strong is an amazing coordinator – that’s why I alluded to the fact that I’m surprised that he’s not been picked up by another college program for a head coaching position.

    Can that game between the Browns and Bills have got any worse ? Anderson ends up with a 15.1 qb rating after only completing 2 of 17 pass attempts. And they still end up winning. Now how is it that TO hasn’t yet imploded after this debacle ?

    And people are still of the opinion that there’s parity in the NFL ? Not when there are this many bad teams in the league !

    It’s becoming ludicrous to watch the Rams, Bills , Bucs, Browns and Raiders play.

    Alan Parkins

  18. The case of Strong is an interesting one.

    For one thing, he may not want to leave Gainesville. It’s not like he’s underpaid by any stretch.

    He was also the first African-American to ever become head coach at Florida, if only for a game, as interim coach when the Zooker got his walking papers. Good trick question.

    I’ve read other articles, which I fail to believe, implying that there’s an issue that his wife is white. I’m not sure what that has to do with anything, but ya’ never know. It is the south.

    Either way, I’m glad he’s on our sidelines. Florida’s allowing 6.4 points per game. That’s best in the NCAA.

  19. Pingback: What to NFL and NCAA football games to watch this weekend (Oct. 17-18) | Daily Loaf

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