As the season starts to wind down, the race for post-season awards grow tighter. It’s safe to say we know exactly who will be making that trip to New York, and let me tell you exactly why.
1. Joe Burrow
Week after week Burrow has continued to prove that this is his Heisman. During this past rivalry week, LSU mortified A&M with a 50-7 win at home. Burrow accumulated 352 yards and went 23 for 32 on the night with no interceptions, keep in mind Burrow was taken out towards the beginning of the 4th quarter. He legitimately embodied the poise a Heisman winner needs. The country saw him time and time again shift out of the quarterback pressure and make beautiful passes to other key players in the game like Justin Jefferson. His ability to dodge the rush, and then proceed to make completions on the run is something to worship. On the season, he’s at 4,366 yards, 44 touchdowns, 6 interceptions, and a 78.3% completion rate. He’s also on an undefeated SEC team, providing more evidence for his superiority as a college player.
2. Jalen Hurts
Hurts has consistently played some amazing games, but I expected more from him this past week. He was held to 163 passing yards but went 13-16 on completions with no interceptions. His performance wasn’t bad, but I expected more from Hurts this week. However, everyone acknowledges this was rivalry week and was bound to be some of the most challenging games of the season. This is one of those performances late in the season that could be ignored, but only if he really shows out next week at AT&T against Baylor in the Big 12 Championship game. Either way he’s still going to punch a ticket to New York, but to go home with hardware seems a little out of the picture for him.
3. Justin Fields
Oh hey, funny seeing him here. Yep, that’s right without a doubt Fields has climbed his way back in the race, and I’m even going so far as to say he’s punching it to New York. He went 14 for 25, which is subpar, but that’s not what I’m focusing on. He went out during the game as he aggravated an MCL sprain, and then slapped a brace on and came back out to play. His performance didn’t waiver to an injury, and that’s something to discuss. He was connecting with Dobbins all night and they would end the game combining for 8 touchdowns, and Fields racking up 302 passing yards.
While all three of these quarterbacks have immense talent, there can only be one winner and I truly think it will be Joe Burrow.
Post Rivalry Week
And just like that, week 14 of college football comes to a close. Who showed out? Who choked? Who broke records? Let’s find out.
Ohio State and Michigan was essential for the CFP. Ohio state came into the game undefeated and ranked at #1. Michigan needed to ‘revive the rivalry’ and break that 7-game losing streak. Like all competitions there can only be one winner, and Michigan did not come close to victory. The Buckeyes remain undefeated as they pulled out a 56-27 win over the Wolverines. Not only did Ohio State as whole show up, Justin Fields made a statement of his own and proved his Heisman case.
Alabama and Auburn is probably the best rivalry in college football. The Iron Bowl brings an immense amount of hatred that could make us and Baylor look like buddies. Alabama was required to dominate the War Eagles to get into the CFP for 6 straight seasons, and proved to be out of reach for the Tide. Auburn pulled out a 48-45 win for some well-deserved bragging rights, and Gus Malzahn topped his own record by becoming the only active SEC coach to have 3 wins over Nick Saban’s Alabama team. One should be able to confidently say that Alabama won’t see the CFP, but you never know with this committee, so stay tuned.
Oklahoma and Oklahoma State is always a well fought game, there’s a reason it coined the name ‘Bedlam’. Both teams played a good game with OSU applying the pressure to Jalen Hurts, and Oklahoma shutting down Chuba Hubbard. Oklahoma’s 24-16 win is nothing to overlook, but that number 4 spot is up for grabs between Georgia, Baylor, and Oklahoma. It’s going to come down to the outcome and margin of victory of the Big 12 Championship game.
Clemson and South Carolina wasn’t supposed to be a close game, and it lived up to that expectation. There’s really nothing to say about this game except the fact that Clemson remains undefeated and is going to clinch that third spot in the CFP. Like Oklahoma, they will have to win next week at home against the #22 ranked Virginia.
LSU and A&M could have been one of those late season, playoff determining, losses for LSU. Lucky for the Tigers, it was not. In fact, this game was the biggest margin of victory in all the rivalry games. Joe Burrow lead his team to a 50-7 win, with the help of the ‘Burreaux’ jersey as well. LSU needs to play this exact kind of game against Georgia next week if they want that #1 spot in the CFP, otherwise I think it goes to Ohio State.
6A UIL Playoffs recap
Many unlikely teams have moved on to round 4 with 8 of the best teams in the state of Texas advancing.
In the D2 category, Dallas Jesuit continues their winning streak with the help of EJ Smith and Jake Taylor. The Rangers brought down the 11-1 Klein Collins team as they take their talents to the 4th round of the playoffs. They will face off against Spring Westfield and Houston’s NRG Stadium on Saturday at 7pm.
In the D1 category some historically great teams took detrimental losses: Rockwall defeated Klein Oak 37-27, Duncanville took down Arlington Martin 45-17, Southlake Carroll beat Midland Lee 49-27, North Shore humiliated Katy 56-35, and at McLane Stadium Prosper dominated The Woodlands 38-14 letting everyone know they mean business.
These teams are just 2 wins away from competing for the State Championship at AT&T Stadium, so I encourage everyone to make it out to these games and cheer on some amazing athletes.