Oct
14
2020

NCAA Football: Corn’s Cream Of The Crop

After a crazy week 6 in college football, here is my top 25 rankings heading into week 7:

  1. Clemson: (4-0) 42-17 W @ Home vs Miami: Okay. Clemson is really good. This defense made things hard on D’Eriq King and company all night, as they forced King to throw two interceptions, as he was in constant duress, as he was sacked 5 times. Lawrence had four total touchdowns, Etienne had 149 yards and two touchdowns. This team looks really good.
  2. Alabama: (3-0) 63-48 W @ Ole Miss: SEC defense?? This was closer than what the final score suggests, as the Rebels was tied with Crimson Tide, 42-42 in the fourth quarter. At the end of the day, Alabama fans were yelling “Roll Tide!” as they took over in the 4th quarter, on the back of Najee Harris, as he ran for 206 yards and five touchdowns. He has TEN total TD’s on the season so far. For the people questioning if Mac Jones would be good enough to be the guy this year (Me), the QB threw for 417 yards and two touchdowns. If he looks good against a good Georgia defense next week, it’s time to think of him as an exciting NFL prospect, and it’s time to think of Alabama as a team that can be legit threats to Clemson to win the title. I’m going need to see more on the defensive side, however.
  3. Georgia: (3-0) 44-21 W @ Home vs Tennessee: Another win on the back of the best defense in college football. They allowed ZERO second-half points, and ZERO rushing touchdowns. A week after the Vols RB duo of Eric Gray and Ty Chandler combined for 195 yards and three scores, they combined for just 36 total yards and zero TDs. On the back of good defense and Georgia’s quarterback Stetson Bennett, who has yet to throw an interception, being a very good game manager, the Bulldogs are scary. Based on what I’ve seen so far this year, if Georgia can contain this high powered Alabama offense with their elite defense, and Bennett can continue to play clean football, Georgia can pull off the upset.
  4. Notre Dame: (3-0) 42-26 W @ Home vs Florida State: I questioned if Notre Dame would look rusty after a Covid-19 Hiatus, and they looked like it after a quarter, as they were down 17-14, but turned it around with a 21 point to 3 swing in the second quarter alone. The Fighting Irish had 353 total rushing yards and four TD’s, led by Kyren Williams, who had 185 yards and two scores.
  5. Oklahoma State (3-0) Didn’t play.
  6. North Carolina: (3-0) 56-45 W @ Home vs Virginia Tech: I expected a lot of points, considering this game went 6 overtime periods last season but also expected UNC to get upset after not being able to separate themselves against their competition early this season. Sam Howell threw for 257 yards and a trio of scores, and the Tar Heels had 399 total rushing yards and 5 touchdowns, led by Michael Carter, and his 214 rushing yards and two scores.
  7. Cincinnati: (3-0) Didn’t play.
  8. Miami: (3-1) 17-42 L @ Clemson: I couldn’t bump down the U too much, considering they played the first ranked team in the country. This team got dominated all along the offensive line against this Tiger defense, as they had a hard time getting into a rhythm. King threw two interceptions, and only averaged 4.2 yards per completion, as he saved his day on the ground with 84 yards rushing and a score. This line will need to adjust to let King have time to operate and allow Cam’Ron Harris to get going, as he had 9 touches and just 9 total yards.
  9. Auburn: (2-1) 30-28 W @ Home vs Arkansas: They won…but they shouldn’t have. All Bo Nix needed to do was spike the ball to set up a game-winning field goal, instead, he bobbled the snap, only to recover, and spike it into the ground BEHIND him. What should’ve been called a fumble, was simply called intentional grounding, as the Tigers came away with a victory thanks to one of the WORST no calls I have EVER seen. Tank Bigsby had 146 rushing yards and Anthony Schwartz had 10 receptions for 100 yards and a touchdown.
  10. Texas A&M: (2-1) 41-38 W @ Home vs Florida: Kellen Mond had 338 yards and three touchdowns, Isiah Spiller had 174 yards and two touchdowns, and Caleb Chapman had nine receptions, 151 yards, and two touchdowns, as the Aggies pulled off the upset against the Gators they played a more rounded game of football, and at the end of the day, made more plays to come out on top.
  11. Florida: (2-1) 38-41 L @ Texas A&M: Kyle Trask had 312 yards passing, along with four touchdowns, one going to, of course, Kyle Pitts, but the Gators downfall was again their ability to be a balanced team and run the ball, as Nay’Quan Wright had 51 yards rushing and a touchdown, as the team as a whole totaled for just 90 total yards and just 3.8 yards per carry.
  12. Louisiana: (3-0) Didn’t play. Plays (3-0) Coastal Carolina today.
  13. Tennessee: (2-1) 21-44 L @ Georgia: Tennessee had a 21-17 lead at the half against Georgia, but got the shutout in the second half. This team had a good showing, but was slow to adjust to Georgia’s 2nd half adjustment, and couldn’t get much going on the ground, that eventually led to the defeat. The Vols looked better than the Auburn Tigers when they played the Bulldogs, however.
  14. Iowa State: (3-1) After their win against Oklahoma, the Cyclones kept their foot on the gas, building momentum, as they beat Texas Tech, 31-15. It was the same gameplan of a perfect balance of Brock Purdy and Breece Hall. Purdy had 302 yards passing and two passing scores. He chipped in 42 yards rushing as well. Speaking of rushing, Hall had 135 yards and two touchdowns.
  15. Virginia Tech: (2-1) 45-56 L @ North Carolina: Kansas transfer Khalil Herbert led the way with 138 yards and two scores. So far this season, he has statlines of 6-101-1 and 19-207-2 on the season. He’s one of the better backs in the country, and this team will need to lean on him and the running game to win games, but also needs to direct its focus on stopping the run, as they gave up 399 yards and five touchdowns on the ground.
  16. SMU: (4-0) Didn’t play. Plays Tulane Friday.
  17. UCF: (2-1) Didn’t play.
  18. Kansas State: (3-1) 21-14 W @ TCU: After a loss against a good Arkansas State team in their first game of the season, the Wildcats have rallied off three straight wins against Oklahoma, Texas Tech, and most recently TCU, whom I had ranked 18th in the country heading into their matchup, and coming off of a big win against Texas. With Skylar Thompson our for the season, freshman Will Howard threw for 117 yards and an interception, and rushed for 86 yards and a score against TCU, as they held on to get the win. If Kansas State wants to stay in my top 25 rankings, I’m going to need to see more from Freshman, Howard, and the rest of the squad.
  19. NC State: (3-1) 38-21 W @ Virginia: Welcome to the cream of the crop, Wolfpack! NC State’s only loss on the season was to 15th ranked Virginia Tech, and two weeks ago beat a ranked Pitt team to be considered worthy of making this list. This week they were led by running back, Zonovan Knight, who had 101 yards on 18 carries and a touchdown.
  20. Marshall: (3-0) 38-14 W @ Western Kentucky: I threw Marshall in my Cream of the Crop rankings early into the season due to a victory over a then-ranked App State. I had to be patient but FINALLY got to see them play again as they faced off against Western Kentucky. Led by a three-touchdown effort on 15 carries for 107 yards from Brenden Knox, and three fumble recoveries by the defense, the Thundering Herd extended their undefeated streak, and their win against a ranked App State team is more impressive than anything BYU has done this season, but yet they’re a top 15 team in the AP poll somehow…
  21. Boston College: (3-1) 31-30 W @ Home vs Pittsburgh: May I introduce to you, Boston College! After being just a failed 2 point conversion away from beating 6th ranked North Carolina, Boston College beat what was the 23rd ranked Pitt Panthers. Quarterback, Phil Jurkovec, whos birthplace just so happened to be Pittsburgh, threw for 358 yards, to go along with three touchdowns, as Sophomore WR, Zay Flowers was the recipient of all three of the scoring strikes, as he had six receptions, for 162 yards and three scores. He had eight grabs and 61 yards against UNC, and had 5 catches for 162 yards and a score against Duke earlier in the year, proving to be a very reliable receiving option. Jurkovec and Flowers connection will be key for this Golden Eagles team to stay in the top 25. They have a prime opportunity to vault up the rankings, as they square off against the Hokies next.
  22. Oklahoma: (2-2) 53-45 W vs Texas: After what was an epic four-overtime Red River Showdown, that ended up being the highest-scoring in the series history, the Sooners crawl their way back into the top 25, and hopefully for them, this victory is a turning point for this team this season. Going into the game, Oklahoma’s biggest issues was their success on the ground game, and their lack of defense, mainly takeaways. T.J. Pledger led the way with 131 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries, as the team had 208 yards total on the ground and four totes across the endzone. Marcus Major helped out with 43 yards and a score, and Spencer Rattler chipped in with 51 yards and a score on the ground. Through the air, he threw for 209 yards, as he had 3 scores via the air, along with an interception. The Sooner defense had six sacks, ten tackles for loss, seven QB hurries and forced three turnovers in the win. A step in the right direction.
  23. Tulsa: (1-1) Didn’t play.
  24. BYU: (4-0) 27-20 W @ Home vs UTSA. BYU sneaks into the top 25 since they haven’t lost a game and has looked good doing so. However, the AP Poll has them way too high in my opinion, as they haven’t played ANYBODY.
  25. Ole Miss (1-2) 48-63 L @ Home vs Alabama: Yes, they have two losses, but it’s to two teams in my top 15 and looked good against Alabama, being tied at one point in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Matt Corral had 365 yards passing and two touchdowns. He also added 40 yards on the ground. Speaking of the ground, Snoop Conner added 128 yards, Jerrion Ealy added 120 yards, as the both of them added a pair of scores apiece in the loss. I struggled between ranking Arkansas and Ole Miss but went with the Rebels, who have a win against a ranked opponent, Kentucky. Their game against each other next week basically determines who gets the 25th ranking in my next Cream of the Crop column.