Justin K. Aller - Getty Images
Yee-haw! Baylor-West Virginia and Texas-Oklahoma State reminded us that the Wild West is still alive and while Big 12 football may be back, their defenses remain lost in some unknown dimension.
Conference football is back, y'all, and with it comes comes a few truths that we can take as laws of the universe. Let's explore, shall we?
Rule #1: No Big 12 team has a defensive playbook.
(9) West Virginia 70 - (25) Baylor 63
While I was sitting at the bar watching the Penn State game this week, the Baylor-West Virginia game was on a TV behind me. Without fail, there would be at least 3 touchdowns between the Bears and Mountaineers in the time it took for the Penn State game to go between TV timeouts. It was ridiculous and so was Geno Smith. Smith, who hopefully next year will become the Buffalo Bills' savior, completed 45-of-51 passes for 656 yards and eight(!!!) touchdowns. Steadman Bailey hauled in five of those touchdowns. Oh, and Baylor quarterback threw for 581 yards and five touchdowns in a losing effort as this game set new Big 12 records across the board. The teams combined to go 23-31 on third downs.
Hell, I'll transfer to Morgantown or Waco if they give me a scholarship to play safety. I could at least slow a guy down enough so someone much stronger than I can tackle them.Come on, Holgo. I'll even be your gambling buddy.
(12) Texas 41 - Oklahoma State 36
Oklahoma State took a 36-34 lead with 2:34 left in the game, but allowed Ash to march down the field in the ensuing minute-and-a-half to set up Joe Bergeron touchdown run with under a minute left to clinch the game for the Longhorns. The game was not without controversy, though, as an Oklahoma State came out the pile at the end of Bergeron's touchdown with the ball, but officials used video replay to uphold the scoring call.
When all was said and done, the lead changed hands four times in the fourth quarter as no defense wanted to get a stop and put the game away.
Bottom line: While they are some ugly defensive performances to stomach, the games are fun as hell to watch.
#2 No, the SEC is not the be-all, end-all conference of college football.
(5) Georgia 51 - Tennessee 44
Congratulations, Georgia, you hung on by the skin of your teeth after Tyler Bray imploded in the last six minutes of your game. That's not the most predictable Tyler Bray thing to do or anything.
In a season where Tennessee was supposed to be "back", they are now 0-2 in the SEC with losses to the Bulldogs and Florida. They have had essentially the same quarterback for the past decade whether it be Bray or Erik Ainge or Casey Clausen or anyone else you want to mention. They're just a ticking turnover-bomb waiting to explode and leaves Rocky Top crying while listening to "Don't Stop Believing" on the jukebox every Saturday night.
And while I love Mark Richt and would have been happy with him as coach of Penn State nine months ago, this performance is typical Georgia, playing down to its competition and, at least this week, squeaking out a win in the end. Georgia will Georgia at some point this season, though.
(3) LSU 38 - Towson 22
Towson was up for most of the first half, scored twice in the fourth quarter against the OMGAWESOMESEC LSU defense and the Mad Hatter's team has only turned in one great performance this season (a 41-7 beating of Washington in Week 3). But sure, let's just have Alabama-LSU IV in January because *the SEC is awesome based on Stanford losing to Washington on Thursday night.
*Note: This is a real argument that ESPN announcers made on Thursday night, You're all shocked, I know.
(1) Alabama 33 - Ole Miss 14
1. As the guys on Solid Verbal said last week, take Alabama "minus-anything" when picking the spread.
2. Ole Miss will always be just plain awful.
So, the SEC is Alabama as invincible and everyone else with as many dings and dents and holes in their resume as any other contingent of teams in any other conference in the nation. Glad that's cleared up.
3. We'll never actually know who the best Pac-12 team is. Ever.
Washington 17 - (8) Stanford 13
Stanford, who just two weeks ago upset USC, had the national stage all to themselves on Thursday night and couldn't keep their momentum going as the Huskies won in the Great White North, 17-13. Steve Sarkisian is getting his program on the upswing in Washington while Stanford fans are realizing that Josh Nunes and (insert tight end here) are not Andrew Luck and Coby Fleener. So if USC isn't as good as we all thought and Stanford is indeed not as good as they were last year, who exactly should we be looking out for in the Pac-12?
(18) Oregon State 38 - Arizona 35
Pass me some of that Beaver Juice because Oregon State actually looks for real. Sean Mannion might be the most underrated quarterback in the nation. He threw for 433 yards and three touchdowns against a Rich-Rod defense that took another beating after starting off surprisingly well. Oregon State moves to 3-0 on the season and has a real chance to be 8-0 before heading to Stanford on November 10th.
Oh wait, that's right. Oregon is the best team. I just can never tell because I'm blinded when I watch their games on TV. But, yeah, they'll destroy everybody.
4. The MAC is great, even on Saturdays (which isn't true #MACtion, Hustle Belt!).
Kent State 45 - Ball State 43
Miami (Ohio) 56 - Akron 49
Ohio 37 - Massachusetts 34
Northern Illinois 55 - Central Michigan 34
In regards to all #MACtion having to take place during the middle of the week:
@djvecellio We have lives too, you know!— Hustle Belt (@HustleBelt) September 29, 2012
5. Virginia Tech is as elite as ever.
Cincinnati 27 - Virginia Tech 24
Other Notable Games
(4) Florida State 30 - South Florida 17
(15) Clemson 45 - Boston College 31
Middle Tennessee 49 - Georgia Tech 28
Texas-San Antonio 35 - New Mexico St. 14
BYU 47 - Hawaii 0
The Devon Edwards Special: Stony Brook 23 - Army 3
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