Well, week 11 of college football was this past weekend, along with the first games of NCAA basketball. Who let us down? Who broke records? And who’s going to take home a well-deserved award at the end of the season? Let’s get right into discussing it on this week’s edition of: Yeah, I’m Gonna Have to Call You back.
1. Heisman watch
Last week I talked about the top 5 Heisman candidates: Tua Tagovailoa, Joe Burrow, Jalen Hurts, Justin Fields, and Chase Young. In my opinion, I have Jalen Hurts winning, but after the LSU game, I’m at a crossroads. Oklahoma played a great first half against Iowa State, but I’m not sure what happened at the end. Oklahoma lead 21-7 going into halftime, and then in the 4th Iowa State scored 20 unanswered points, to end up losing 42-41 off an unsuccessful 2-point conversion. Lincoln Riley talked post-game that “it’s still a win”, and even though it did come close, hurts had a great game. 22 carries for 68 yards, 5 total touchdowns, 69% completion rate, and 1 interception? Yeah, he’s still my pick. But let me tell you, Joe Burrow is putting up a tight race for my pick too. This kid is an amazing quarterback, 393 passing yards, 3 touchdowns, 79.5% completion rate, and he averaged 4.6 yards per carry. As for Tua? He’s out in my opinion. Alabama finally plays a game that’s an even matchup, and he forgets how to play football. A 52.5% completion rate isn’t even remotely acceptable, especially for a Heisman candidate. Is he hurt? Yes, but then that adds another reason why he can’t be the Heisman, he’s not the best.
2. The “game of the season”
This has been the biggest game of the season: two top 5 teams, two Heisman candidates what could make this game even better? Well, maybe an Alabama loss. I’ll admit it right here right now, I hate Alabama because I’m not Alabama. It’s that simple. I’m tired of seeing them wake up and appear in the college football playoffs. All hatred aside, the game wasn’t as close as the score made it seem, not once did Alabama lead the game. We’ve already talked about the pathetic Tagovailoa 52.5% completion rate, but LSU was winning 33-13 at halftime. Then again, LSU wasn’t ‘all that’ because we also watched the ‘impressive SEC defense’ in action as it gave up 28 points in the second half. If I’m being completely honest, I was hoping for a better game. Instead, we saw an ‘untouchable’ team cave to the sight of real competition.
3. No, they didn’t score 94 points, they beat them by 94
It’s that time of the year again. The point in the year when football and basketball coincide, and basketball is off to a great start. On Friday, the Utah Utes took on Mississippi Valley State at home. How would I describe the Utes’ performance? Absolutely disrespectful. They demolished the Delta Devils and set a record for the largest Division 1 college basketball margin of victory. They were up 70-20 going into halftime, which could be a normal NCAA basketball beatdown in itself. To put it in perspective, last year the Utes only scored over 70 points the entire game 56% of the time. The entire Utah starting line-up scored double-figure points, Gach and Jones both even had a triple-double. Not only did they break an NCAA record, but 2 school records as well. They broke the record for most points scored in a game (132 previously in 1960), as well as most points in a half (this game from their 73 points in the second half, previously 71).
4. Pac-12 refs become Big-12 refs for the night
On Saturday, California (5-4) took a 33-20 win over Washington State (4-5). Devon Modster, the California quarterback, threw for a career-high of three touchdowns, and he even rushed a fourth touchdown in. Modster played a great game especially coming off an injury. However, this game might not have panned out as it did, if it wasn’t for a miscalled penalty. Late in the third quarter, a facemask call was made on a Washington State player, causing a 50-yard return, to become and 8-yard. Following the next play, the Pac-12 says, “the referee informed Washington State that there was an error in the application of the penalty.” It turns out, 15 yards should have been added on to the impressive WSU return. Could this have made an impact? Well, the play resulted in a 35-yard field goal, and that extra 15 yards could have been the yardage Washington State needed for a touchdown. A 20-18 score is a much tighter game than the 20-14 score this game became. The referee, Matt Richards, has been suspended 1 game, and the rest of the crew has been ‘downgraded’. Still, I’m sure Washington State fans are at an unrest knowing this win for California snapped their 4-game losing streak.
5. Turner turns the football program around
In the past 40 years, we’ve seen the development of the ATM, Smartphones, GPS, and barcodes. And while the rest of the world has continued to advance, unfortunately Fort Worth athletic departments are stuck with limited resources and outdated facilities, specifically the football programs. Northside football has been unable to get competitive since 1979, which was the last time they qualified for a playoff game. Over the summer, former TCU Running Back, Joseph Turner, was hired to bring Northside out of its slump, and he’s doing more than that. Not only has the team won 5 games this year, but he coached the team to the end of their 40-year playoff drought. The Steers trailed 20-7 going into the 4th quarter and scored 14 unanswered points to take the win. On Friday, North Side will take on Wichita Falls in the first round of 5A D2 playoffs, at home.