Being able to analyze College Football has been a blast. Having the chance to look at potential NFL players and the overall pace of the game is just fun to watch. I’ve tried to be as versatile as I can with both the NFL and the college game. I’ve had a chance to check out the schedules and quite a few things caught my eye. Enjoy everybody.
September- Notable Games
-USC/Alabama: Nick Saban and company will begin its title defense against a very talented USC Trojans team. The Tide have won four of the last seven national championships and entering the season, a large chunk of last year’s title team will be gone including Derrick Henry and Jake Coker but in typical Saban fashion, he always recruits well. We will see many new faces for this Alabama team. This game will also feature Alabama’s offensive coordinator facing his former team.
-Clemson/Auburn: Heisman candidate DeShaun Watson is set to return and begin another season after last season’s title hopes were diminished by Alabama. A new year means new hope and they will be projected to win the ACC once again and make the College Football Playoff. I can see this Clemson offense picking up exactly where they left off a season again. For Auburn, Gus Malzahn will be able to now see how improved his team is after a disappointing year in 2015. This won’t be an easy task because stopping Clemson’s high-powered offense will be a challenge.
-Alabama/Ole Miss: Hugh Freeze and company have defeated Alabama the last two seasons including a win in Tuscaloosa last September. I see Saban and company going into this game with a serious chip on their shoulder and this could be a statement game for them. They want to let it be known that they are still the team to beat in the SEC. Ole Miss will have a different looking offense without LaQuan Treadwell who will now be playing on Sundays in the NFL. Chad Kelly will be back under center as he decided to return for another year.
-LSU/Florida: These two played a very entertaining game in Baton Rouge last year and this year’s battle will be at the swamp. When they met in 2015, Florida stuck with the Tigers throughout the game until Fournette and company simply pulled away and proved to be too much. Jim McElwain will have his guys ready for this battle that could determine a lot in the always competitive SEC.
-Clemson/Florida State: These two teams know each other very well and for a few years, Florida State got the best of Clemson. I remember saying last year if Clemson wanted to get over the hump, they had to beat Florida State and they finally did but believe it or not, Clemson has been victorious in seven of the past 13 meetings. Supremacy in the ACC’s Atlantic division will be on the line in this game.
-Michigan/Michigan State: How could we forget this battle? Who really runs the state of Michigan? Is it Harbaugh and the Wolverines or is it Dantonio and Sparty? We all remember how this game ended last year. The blocked punt, the recovery and Michigan State stunning the Wolverines who were clicking at that time as they were in the midst of a winning streak. This year, the battle will take place in Sparty’s back yard as these rivals will battle once again.
-Alabama/LSU: There’s always something on the line when these two get set to battle. They are either both in the top five and the winner has an easier path to the playoffs and the loser will be set back. That’s exactly what it was last year as both LSU and Bama both entered their annual meeting ranked second and fourth in the first set of CFP rankings. They shut down Leonard Fournette last year and will look to do the same in Baton Rouge. Saban, Les Miles, Alabama, LSU, what more could you ask for?
-Baylor/Oklahoma: When they met in 2015, Baker Mayfield led the Sooners into a hostile environment and came away with a 44-34 win over Baylor and that prolific offense. This year, the battle will take place in Norman. If you like offenses, offenses that can light the score board up and put up video game like numbers, this is the game for you.
-Ohio State/Michigan State: This is one game I’m definitely looking forward too. Ohio State had a very lengthy winning streak going and Michigan State came in and snapped it. These are arguably two of the best teams in the Big Ten and when they battle, something is always up for grabs. Sparty knocked Ohio State out of the playoff picture and ended up making it themselves. This has revenge written all over it as Ohio State will look to get back at Michigan State.
-Auburn/Alabama: The Iron Bowl and two teams that don’t care for each other so much. The way I see it, Alabama could be closing in on yet another trip to the SEC Championship game and getting ready for yet another title game appearance or Auburn can shock the world and upset Bama in Tuscaloosa and win for the first time since 2010 when some guy named Cam Newton was under center and led Auburn to a perfect season and the national championship.
Michigan/Ohio State: A trip to the Rose Bowl could be on the line in this one. Two rivals, two teams that hate each other and a possible Big Ten title game appearance on the line. Michigan played the Buckeyes very tough at the big house last year but Urban Meyer and crew simply pulled away. This one will be in Columbus with much to play for.