A few weeks ago, we decided to take off and go see the Grand Tetons in Wyoming. I agreed to go because I love the mountains, but under the condition that we could stop a day and watch football in a hotel room. Yes, I do admit that I do have a problem, and the first step for any addiction is acknowledgement. Right? Is there a footballholic anonymous chapter in my area?
Much thanks to my lovely bride for being so understanding and supportive. Not a lot of women would let their husband watch football in a hotel room on their vacation and I am grateful.
After watching the games with the skyline of Denver in front of the Rocky Mountains in the background, we got up on Sunday morning to continue our vacation. Stopping next in Boulder, Colorado and the campus of the Colorado Buffaloes, I honestly don’t know why any recruit in the country would not want to play for Colorado. The campus and the football facilities are out of this
world. Sitting in front of the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, this place blew me away. Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre is a program builder and he has the Buffaloes rolling now without signing any of those top recruiting talents. Since the beginning of last season, the Buffaloes are 12-4 and on the way up.
If I’m a high school 5 star football recruit, I am going to guarantee I will look at Colorado. Since the arrival of MacIntyre, Colorado has seriously entered college football’s arms races. Their new weight room and other football related facilities would probably compare with any other’s in the country including Clemson.
A few thoughts from Saturday’s games:
Ohio State was proclaimed a playoff team and it was said their defensive line was the best in the country. The Oklahoma offensive line is the best in the country and they had a classic match up in Columbus with the Sooners’ offensive line getting the win and the revenge.
I am as guilty as the next man as I had Ohio State as one of my four playoff teams. Oops!
Clemson’s defensive line should not have been overlooked and this blog had the Tiger’s defensive line as the best in the nation over Ohio State’s. Lucky for me, the Clemson Tiger defensive line went out of their way to prove me right as they sacked new Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham 11 times before the evening was over. Auburn does not have a bad offensive line, just the Tigers dominated the line of scrimmage. Defensive end Austin Bryant had 4 sacks all by himself. Star defensive tackle Christian Wilkins who should go in the first round of next year’s NFL Draft, had another 2 sacks. Clemson has the top defensive line in the country until somebody proves otherwise.
Nobody has won the Heisman Trophy twice since the great Archie Griffin won it in 1974 and 1975. But, last year’s winner, Lamar Jackson of Louisville, is making a case for himself becoming a two time Heisman winner.
In 2 games, Jackson has already thrown the ball for 771 yards and 5 touchdowns with no picks. He has 239 yards rushing, so far, with 3 more touchdowns. Jackson is making his case for deserving another trophy.
Across the country, the media has Sam Darnold leading the race for the Heisman and he led his team to an impressive 42-24 win over Stanford. The Cardinal has owned the Trojans in recent years, but
not this time as Darnold threw 4 touchdown passes. Darnold has 605 passing yards after two games.
Another rising star for the Trojans is true freshman running back Stephen Carr who ran for 119 yards on 11 carries while junior running back Ronald Jones II ran for 116 yards on 23 carries and a couple of touchdowns. That doesn’t say much for Stanford’s defense this season.
After throwing for 386 yards and 3 touchdowns over favored Ohio State, Baker Mayfield may have become a more serious player in the Heisman race. He finished in 3rd place last season and he may have closed the gap with his second half performance against the Buckeyes.
A team we may have to watch out for this season in the ACC is Duke. The Blue Devils have had a couple of good teams under head coach David Cutcliffe, but this one could be as good as any. On Saturday, Duke beat up on Northwestern, 41-17. The Wildcats of Northwestern were believed to be a team on the rise this season with junior quarterback Clayton Thorson and senior running back Justin Jackson. But, Duke beat them impressively.
Defending Big 10 champion Penn State looks like the real deal. Quarterback Trace McSorley, running back Saquon Barkley, tight end Mike Gesicki and wide receivers Juwan Johnson and DaeSean Hamilton are going to be hard to slow down with their improved offensive line. The Nittany Lion defense could be solid, too.
True freshman Jonathan Taylor of Wisconsin appears to be the next big deal at running back for the Badgers. The speedy 5-11, 215 Taylor from Salem, New Jersey has been the difference maker for the Badgers this season. In two games, Taylor has 310 yards rushing and 4 touchdowns while impressing everybody with his speed and power.
These were just a few of the players, or teams that stood out to me in week two.
We have a long way to go. Thank goodness.