Articles By Steven Lassan

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College football’s coach carousel didn’t spin into motion as some may have expected in Week 7.

Texas was a heavy underdog to Oklahoma in the annual Red River Rivalry, but the Longhorns stunned the Sooners. Coach Mack Brown is still on the hot seat, and the victory against Oklahoma probably doesn’t change anything in the overall picture for Texas. However, the Longhorns aren’t finished in the Big 12 title landscape, and the win over the Sooners has Brown’s team in position to push Baylor for the top spot.

Eastern Michigan is arguably the nation’s most difficult job. However, the Eagles have backtracked since going 6-6 in 2011, winning just three games in their last 18 contests. English faces long odds to return for 2014.

Other coaches moving up the hot seat watch include Kansas’ Charlie Weis and Virginia’s Mike London.

Each week, we will take a look at the hot seat/pressure on a program for all 125 coaches. Some new coaches will rank high due to poor performances but aren't in any danger of losing their job.

And another important note when reading our coach on the hot seat rankings: Outside of the top 10-15 coaches, it’s all about the pressure on a program. While some coaches – like Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen and Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz – aren’t in any danger of being fired. However, both coaches need to continue to show the program is headed in the right direction.

Ranking All 125 CFB Coaches on Hot Seat/Pressure on Program to Win in 2013

RkCoachTeam2013 RecordAnalysis
1Ron English1-5EMU is 3-15 in last 18 games.
2Charlie Weis2-3KU likely to go winless in Big 12 play.
3Mack Brown4-2Win over OU doesn't change much.
4Mike London2-4Has vote of confidence…
5Norm Chow0-6UH lost by 10 points or less in last 3 games.
6Ron Turner1-5Lost to UAB by three on Saturday.
7Bo Pelini5-1Huskers in control of Legends Division?
8Charley Molnar1-5Minutemen break into win column.
9Dan Enos3-4Solid road victory at Ohio for the Chips.
10Matt Rhule0-6Army may be only chance at a win this year.
11P.J. Fleck0-7WMU outscored 80-20 in last two games.
12Jim Grobe3-3 
13Dana Holgorsen3-3Bye week came at good time for WVU.
14Bobby Hauck4-2Hauck has Rebels moving in right direction.
15Doc Holliday4-2Herd the frontrunner in C-USA East?
16Skip Holtz2-4 
17Tim Beckman3-2 
18Todd Monken0-5No guaranteed win on schedule for USM.
19Dan Mullen3-3Tough job, but fanbase getting restless.
20Kirk Ferentz4-2Hawkeyes can still make run at bowl.
21Rich Ellerson3-4Already surpassed win total from 2012.
22Jeff Quinn4-2Bulls have won four in a row.
23Carl Pelini2-5 
24June Jones1-4 
25Sean Kugler1-5Miners on road in five of last six games.
26Garrick McGee2-4 
27Rick Stockstill3-4Blue Raiders have lost three in a row.
28Terry Bowden1-6Zips gave NIU all it could handle.
29Joey Jones2-3 
30Randy Edsall5-1Terps one win away from bowl eligibility.
31Kevin Wilson3-3 
32Bill Blankenship2-4 
33Rocky Long3-3Aztecs back on track.
34Tony Levine5-0Soft schedule, but Cougars 5-0.
35Jim McElwain2-4 
36George O'Leary4-1 
37David Bailiff4-2 
38Troy Calhoun1-6AFA off to worst start since 1993.
39Dave Christensen4-2 
40Bob Davie2-4 
41Larry Fedora1-4Can UNC get back on track?
42Ron Caragher3-3 
43Kyle Flood4-2 
44Brian Polian3-3 
45Darrell Hazell1-5 
46Dan McCarney3-3Mean Green should be in mix for winning record.
47Larry Blakeney4-3 
48Bobby Petrino4-2 
49Paul Haynes2-5 
50Doug Martin0-6 
51Paul Petrino1-6 
52Paul Johnson3-3Yellow Jackets have lost three in a row.
53Tommy Tuberville4-2 
54Ruffin McNeill4-2 
55Scott Shafer3-3Syracuse coming off first ACC win.
56Paul Chryst3-2 
57Dennis Franchoine3-3 
58Bryan Harsin3-3 
59Mike Leach4-3 
60Matt Wells3-4 
61Trent Miles0-6 
62Frank Solich4-2 
63Butch Jones3-3 
64Jerry Kill4-2 
65Brady Hoke5-1 
66Willie Taggart2-4 
67Mark Stoops1-5 
68Dave Doeren3-3 
69Steve Sarkisian4-2 
70Gary Pinkel6-0Mizzou firmly in SEC East title discussion.
71Bret Bielema3-4 
72Dave Clawson5-2 
73Curtis Johnson5-2Green Wave one step closer to bowl.
74Ken Niumatalolo3-2 
75Bob Stoops5-1 
76Mark Richt4-2 
77Sonny Dykes1-5 
78Mark Dantonio5-1 
79Rod Carey6-0Huskies back in BCS bowl contention.
80Justin Fuente1-4 
81Kyle Whittingham4-3Win over Stanford is Utah's biggest in the Pac-12.
82Dabo Swinney6-0 
83Matt Campbell3-3 
84Al Golden5-0 
85Mark Helfrich6-0Ducks on path to play for national title.
86Brian Kelly3-2 
87Jimbo Fisher5-0 
88Will Muschamp5-2 
89Larry Coker2-5 
90Frank Beamer6-1Hokies quietly riding six-game win streka.
91Gus Malzahn5-1 
92Bronco Mendenhall4-2 
93Todd Berry3-4 
94Rich Rodriguez3-2 
95Steve Addazio3-3BC clearly improved under Addazio.
96Todd Graham4-2 
97Jim Mora5-0 
98Mike MacIntyre2-3 
99Paul Rhoads1-4 
100Mike Riley5-1 
101James Franklin3-3Will the Commodores go bowling?
102Hugh Freeze3-3 
103David Cutcliffe4-2 
104Tim DeRuyter5-0 
105Les Miles6-1 
106Gary Andersen4-2 
107Mike Gundy4-1 
108Pete Lembo6-1 
109Mark Hudspeth3-2 
110Bill O'Brien4-2 
111Kevin Sumlin5-1 
112Gary Patterson3-3 
113Bill Snyder2-4 
114Pat Fitzgerald4-2 
115David Shaw4-1 
116Chris Petersen4-2 
117Kliff Kingsbury6-0 
118Charlie Strong6-0 
119Steve Spurrier5-1 
120Art Briles5-0Baylor should be the favorite in the Big 12.
121Urban Meyer6-0 
122Nick Saban6-0 
NREd Orgeron1-0Trojans showing signs of life under Orgeron.
NRT.J. Weist0-1Lost debut to USF.
NRMike Bath0-1Lost to UMass in first game.

Related College Football Content

Stats to Know From Week 7
ACC Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
Big 12 Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
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Pac-12 Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
SEC Post-Week 7 Power Rankings

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College Football's Coach on the Hot Seat Rankings: Post-Week 7 Edition
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With seven weeks in the books, college football’s bowl picture is starting to clear. Stanford’s loss to Utah was a huge setback to the Cardinal’s national title hopes, while Oregon took a step forward with its win against Washington.

Alabama still looks like the team to beat in the SEC, while Ohio State should be a heavy favorite to win the Big Ten. Baylor takes over as the No. 1 team in the Big 12 with Oklahoma’s loss to Texas.

The bowl season doesn’t start until December, but it's never too early to take a look at what the matchups might look like. Even at the midpoint of the 2013 season, it's still hard to make long-term projections about teams, especially with nearly two months of conference games still remaining.

The post-Week 7 bowl projections are a mixture between preseason projections, how things would look if the season ended today, and a small dose of the results so far this year. Expect more changes over the next few weeks, especially as we see how teams perform in conference games.

A few teams barely missed the projections this week, including West Virginia, Washington State, Duke and NC State from BCS conferences. And Texas State, Buffalo, Tulsa, North Texas and Arkansas State from the non-BCS ranks.

As the season progresses, it will be easier to project which teams will get to the six-win mark or finish below.

College Football's Post-Week 7 Bowl Projections for 2013

BowlTie-InDateProjection
New MexicoDec. 21Pac-12 vs. MWCUtah vs. SJSU
Famous Idaho PotatoDec. 21MAC vs. MWCBall State vs. Wyoming
Las VegasDec. 21Pac-12 vs. MWCOreg. State vs. Boise State
New OrleansDec. 21Sun Belt vs. CUSAUL Lafayette vs. Tulane
Beef 'O' Brady'sDec. 23American vs. CUSAOhio* vs. MTSU
HawaiiDec. 24MWC vs. CUSANevada vs. Arizona*
Little Caesars PizzaDec. 26MAC vs. Big TenNo. Illinois vs. Indiana
PoinsettiaDec. 26Army vs. MWCNotre Dame* vs. SDSU
MilitaryDec. 27CUSA vs. ACCECU vs. B. College
TexasDec. 27Big 12 vs. Big TenTCU vs. N'Western
Kraft Fight HungerDec. 27BYU vs. Pac-12BYU vs. USC
PinstripeDec. 28American vs. Big 12Cincinnati vs. K-State
BelkDec. 28American vs. ACCRutgers vs. Pittsburgh
Russell AthleticDec. 28American vs. ACCUCF vs. Virginia Tech
Buffalo Wild WingsDec. 28Big 12 vs. Big TenTexas vs. Nebraska
Armed ForcesDec. 30MWC vs. NavyUtah State vs. Navy
Music CityDec. 30ACC vs. SECGa. Tech vs. Missouri
AlamoDec. 30Big 12 vs. Pac-12Texas Tech vs. UCLA
HolidayDec. 30Pac-12 vs. Big 12Washington vs. Okla. State
AdvoCare V100Dec. 31ACC vs. SECUNC vs. Tennessee
SunDec. 31Pac-12 vs. ACCAriz. State vs. Maryland
LibertyDec. 31SEC vs. CUSAOle Miss vs. Marshall
Chick-fil-ADec. 31SEC vs. ACCMiami vs. Georgia
GatorJan. 1SEC vs. Big TenAuburn vs. Michigan
Heart of DallasJan. 1Big Ten vs. CUSARice vs. Iowa
OutbackJan. 1SEC vs. Big TenMich. State vs. Florida
Capital OneJan. 1SEC vs. Big TenWisconsin vs. Texas A&M
RoseJan. 1BCS vs. BCSOhio State vs. Stanford
FiestaJan. 1BCS vs. BCSFresno State vs. Baylor
SugarJan. 2BCS vs. BCSSo. Carolina vs. FSU
CottonJan. 3SEC vs. Big 12LSU vs. Oklahoma
OrangeJan. 3BCS vs. BCSClemson vs. Louisville
BBVA CompassJan. 4SEC vs. AmericanVanderbilt vs. Houston
GoDaddyJan. 5MAC vs. Sun BeltBGSU vs. WKU
National TitleJan. 6BCS vs. BCSAlabama vs. Oregon


* Indicates conference is not expected to fill its alloted bowl slots, leaving an at-large spot available.

Related College Football Content

Stats to Know From Week 7
ACC Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
Big 12 Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
Big Ten Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
Pac-12 Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
SEC Post-Week 7 Power Rankings

Teaser:
College Football's Post-Week 7 Bowl Projections for 2013
Post date: Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - 07:15
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Week 7 was a table-setter for the rest of the ACC season.

Clemson avoided an upset bid by Boston College, which sets up a huge showdown against Florida State next week. The Tigers and Seminoles are both national title contenders, and the matchup in Death Valley should be one of the best games in the ACC for 2013.

Virginia Tech recorded its sixth straight victory with a 19-9 win against Pittsburgh. The Hokies aren’t flashy on offense, but the defense might be the best in college football.

Duke beat Navy, which improved the Blue Devils to 4-2 and positions coach David Cutcliffe’s team for a chance to make another bowl game.

Maryland survived without quarterback C.J. Brown, Georgia Tech lost on the road to BYU, and Syracuse’s ground attack led the way for a 24-10 victory over NC State.

More Post-Week 7 Power Rankings: Big 12 | Big Ten | Pac-12 | SEC

ACC Post-Week 7 Power Rankings

RankTeamLWAnalysis
11Clemson (6-0, 4-0): Boston College gave Clemson all it could handle, but the Tigers found a way to win, setting up a huge showdown with Florida State next Saturday. Clemson’s offense wasn’t firing on all cylinders against the Eagles but still managed 496 yards. The Tigers’ defense helped to pickup some of the slack, as Boston College was held to 4.8 yards per play, and end Vic Beasley scored on a 13-yard fumble return for the final dagger. Clemson can certainly play better, and it’s fair to wonder if this team was looking ahead to the matchup against Florida State next Saturday. However, a similar effort next week against the Seminoles would spell trouble for the Tigers. Next Week: Florida State
22Florida State (5-0, 3-0): The Seminoles were on bye in Week 7 and return to action next Saturday at Clemson. Florida State has cruised to a 5-0 start so far and crushed Maryland 63-0 in Week 6. The Seminoles have lost five straight in Death Valley but defeated Clemson 49-37 in Tallahassee last season. And barring a collapse, the winner of next week’s game should claim the Atlantic Division title. Next Week: at Clemson
33Miami (5-0, 1-0): The Hurricanes had a bye in Week 7 and return to action on Thursday at North Carolina. Miami lost 18-14 against the Tar Heels last season but has won two out of the last three games in this series. The off date came at a crucial time for the Hurricanes, as quarterback Stephen Morris was dealing with a leg injury in last week’s win against Georgia Tech and clearly wasn’t 100 percent. Next Week: at North Carolina (Thursday) 
44Virginia Tech (6-1, 3-0): It wasn’t necessarily pretty against Pittsburgh, but the Hokies won 19-9 and now have six consecutive victories heading into the bye week. Virginia Tech’s offense managed only 315 yards, with quarterback Logan Thomas carrying the load. The senior threw for 239 yards and one score and led the team in rushing for the second time in three games. Running backs J.C. Coleman and Trey Edmunds combined for just 38 yards on 15 attempts. The Hokies’ defense continues to carry the team, dominating the line of scrimmage against the Panthers with eight sacks and 10 tackles for a loss. After an opening week loss to Alabama, Virginia Tech has rallied behind a stout defense and timely offense. And this team has its sights set on a Nov. 9 showdown at Miami for the Coastal Division title. Next Week: Bye 
55Maryland (5-1, 1-1): Quarterback C.J. Brown was forced to miss Saturday’s game with a concussion, but the Terrapins used a solid performance from backup Caleb Rowe (332 yards) to hold off Virginia. In addition to Rowe, running back Brandon Ross also delivered a key performance, recording 88 rushing yards and two scores, while catching three passes for 81 yards. After holding its opponents to 41 points through the first five games, Maryland has allowed 89 in its last two contests. With the Terrapins moving to the Big Ten next season, this was the last scheduled matchup against rival Virginia. Next Week: at Wake Forest 
66Georgia Tech (3-3, 2-2): The Yellow Jackets suffered their third consecutive defeat, losing 38-20 at BYU. The Cougars jumped out to a 24-13 lead at halftime, but Georgia Tech’s defense stepped up in the second half, limiting BYU to just 88 yards in the final two quarters. However, the Yellow Jackets’ offense had two fourth quarter turnovers, including an interception return to give the Cougars a 31-13 edge. Georgia Tech quarterback Vad Lee threw for 133 yards and added 41 on the ground, but the sophomore tossed a costly interception and averaged only two yards a rush. The Yellow Jackets had a difficult schedule over the last three weeks, and the slate is considerably lighter for the rest of October. Next Week: Syracuse
77Pittsburgh (3-2, 2-2): The Panthers had their three-game winning streak snapped in Blacksburg. Pittsburgh’s offensive line was a huge concern entering Saturday’s game against Virginia Tech, and the unit was simply manhandled by the Hokies’ defensive front. Virginia Tech recorded eight sacks and 10 tackles for a loss, and the Panthers recorded only 23 rushing yards on 26 attempts. Running back James Conner and receiver Devin Street both suffered shoulder injuries against the Hokies, and their status for next week’s game is uncertain. Next Week: Old Dominion
88Boston College (3-3, 1-2): Coach Steve Addazio won’t take any solace in moral victories, but the Eagles have nearly scored upsets against the top two teams in the power rankings. Boston College lost 48-34 to Florida State on Sept. 28, and the Eagles gave Clemson all it could handle on Saturday, losing 24-14. Boston College held a 7-3 halftime lead, but the offense never got on track in the second half. Quarterback Chase Rettig had a costly fumble that was returned for a score in the fourth quarter, and running back Andre Williams was held to 70 yards. Even though Boston College didn’t win at Clemson, losing by 10 points to the No. 1 team in the ACC is a good sign for Addazio’s rebuilding effort in Chestnut Hill. Next Week: Bye
913Duke (4-2, 0-2): It won’t register on many national radars, but the Blue Devils’ 35-7 win over Navy was impressive. Duke’s offense got a spark from the return of quarterback Anthony Boone, who completed 31 of 38 passes for 295 yards and three scores. The defense was the bigger storyline for coach David Cutcliffe, as the Blue Devils allowed 230 rushing yards to the Midshipmen but forced three turnovers and did not allow a point in the second half. With four wins in non-conference play, Duke needs just two more wins to get bowl eligible for the second consecutive season. Next Week: at Virginia
1010North Carolina (1-4, 0-2): The Tar Heels were on bye in Week 7 and return to action against Miami on Thursday night. North Carolina has been one of the biggest disappointments in the ACC through the first half of the season, but coach Larry Fedora’s team has a chance to turn things around. The schedule is easier in the second half of 2013, and the Tar Heels play five out of their next seven games at home. Next Week: Miami (Thursday)
1114Syracuse (3-3, 1-1): With a struggling passing attack, the Orange leaned on the ground attack against NC State, and running backs Jerome Smith and Prince Tyson-Gulley responded with a huge effort. Smith recorded 140 yards and one score, while Tyson-Gulley chipped in 132 yards and one touchdown. Quarterback Terrel Hunt only threw for 74 yards, but he added 92 yards on the ground. Syracuse averaged 9.1 yards per carry against the Wolfpack. The Orange turned in one of their top defensive efforts of the season on Saturday, as NC State’s offense managed just 3.7 yards per play and 2.9 yards per carry. The win over the Wolfpack was Syracuse’s first victory in ACC play. Next Week: at Georgia Tech
1211Virginia (2-4, 0-2): Close, but not good enough. That sums up Virginia’s upset bid against Maryland, as the Cavaliers missed a last-minute field goal to win in College Park. Virginia’s offense has struggled against FBS competition, but quarterback David Watford posted a solid stat line against the Terrapins, throwing for 263 yards on 27 completions. Running back Kevin Parks also chipped in 112 yards and one score, while the defense forced three turnovers. While Saturday’s loss was a valiant effort, Virginia’s schedule isn’t going to get any easier, which only increases the pressure on coach Mike London’s hot seat. Next Week: Duke
1312Wake Forest (3-3, 1-2): The Demon Deacons were on bye in Week 7 and return to action against Maryland next Saturday. Wake Forest went into the off week with some momentum after a 28-13 victory over NC State on Oct. 5. The Demon Deacons need to find three wins to get bowl eligible this year, which won’t be easy with a schedule that features Maryland, Miami, Florida State and Vanderbilt in the second half of the season. Next Week: Maryland
149NC State (3-3, 0-3): The bad news: The Wolfpack is now 0-3 in conference play after losing to Syracuse 24-10. The good news: Quarterback Brandon Mitchell will return to the lineup against Florida State on Oct. 26. After averaging just 3.7 yards per play against the Orange, it’s clear NC State’s offense desperately needs a spark. The Wolfpack has not scored more than 14 points in an ACC contest this season, and quarterback Pete Thomas has thrown eight interceptions. Another concern for NC State has to be its rush defense. After allowing just 107.6 rushing yards per game coming into Week 7, the Wolfpack were gashed by Syracuse for 362 yards on the ground. NC State is off to an 0-3 start in conference play, but Mitchell’s return will help this team make a run at a bowl eligibility. Next Week: Bye

ACC Week 7 Recap and Awards

Offensive Player of the Week: Anthony Boone, QB, Duke
Still recovering from a collarbone injury, Boone wasn’t guaranteed to start Saturday’s game against Navy. However, Brandon Connette was injured after practice on Thursday and was ruled out just before kickoff. Boone was Duke’s starter prior to his injury against Memphis on Sept. 7, and the junior was sharp in his return to the starting lineup. Boone completed 31 of 38 throws for 295 yards and three scores. The junior did not throw an interception, and the 295 passing yards were the best by Boone in his three starts in 2013.

Defensive Player of the Week: Vic Beasley, DE, Clemson
Beasley gets the nod for the second week in a row as Athlon’s ACC defensive player of the week. The junior recorded five tackles (two for a loss), one pass breakup and one sack in a 24-14 win over Boston College. Those numbers are solid, but Beasley’s biggest contribution came in the fourth quarter. Linebacker Tony Steward forced a fumble from Boston College quarterback Chase Rettig, which Beasley picked up and returned for a 13-yard touchdown. The score gave Clemson a 10-point cushion, which was enough to hold off the Eagles’ upset bid.

Coordinator of the Week: Jim Knowles, Duke
Duke’s defense has received plenty of criticism over the last two years, as the Blue Devils finished 11th in the ACC in total defense last season and allowed 36 points a game. And in the first five games of 2013, Duke ranked 12th in the ACC in total defense, allowing 400 yards per game. However, the Blue Devils turned in one of their best defensive performances against a FBS team in recent years, as Navy was held to seven points and 230 rushing yards. The Midshipmen did not score a point in the second half and lost three turnovers. The seven points allowed by Duke was the fewest against a FBS team since holding Vanderbilt to just seven points in 2008. Although the Blue Devils have struggled at times on defense, Knowles and the defensive staff deserve a lot of credit for the performance against Navy.

Team of the Week: Virginia Tech
The pickings are slim here, but let’s give a tip of the cap to Virginia Tech. The Hokies used another strong defensive effort to beat Pittsburgh on Saturday, moving to 6-1 on the season. Last year, Virginia Tech won six games in the regular season and needed a bowl victory over Rutgers to get to 7-6. The offense is still a work in progress, averaging only 328.4 yards per game. However, quarterback Logan Thomas has not thrown an interception in three games. The Hokies are holding opponents to just 256 yards per game and only one opponent has scored more than 20 points in a contest this year.

Freshman of the Week: Jack Tocho, CB, NC State
Tocho made his first start of the season against Syracuse and made an instant impact for NC State’s defense. The true freshman recorded three tackles and picked off Syracuse quarterback Terrel Hunt twice. Tocho also added one pass breakup. The three-star recruit injured his shoulder against the Orange but made a solid contribution for NC State’s defense when he was on the field.

5th Down

• Pittsburgh averaged just 3.8 yards per play against Virginia Tech.

• Maryland linebacker L.A. Goree turned in a strong performance against Virginia, recording 15 stops (with one tackle for a loss).

• In Saturday’s game against Clemson, Boston College running back Andre Williams was held under 100 yards for only the second time this season.

• Virginia Tech’s defense recorded eight sacks against Pittsburgh, with three coming from Dadi Nicolas.

• Virginia quarterback David Watford threw for a season-high 263 yards against Maryland.

• Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald recorded three tackles for a loss and two sacks against Virginia Tech.

• Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd has thrown for at least 300 yards in each of his last three games.

• Syracuse scored its first ACC win by beating NC State 24-10 on Saturday.

• Georgia Tech defensive tackle Adam Gotsis recorded four tackles for a loss and two sacks against BYU.

• For the first time since 2011, Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas has not tossed an interception in three consecutive games. 

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2013 ACC Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
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The national title picture was altered by Utah’s 27-21 win over Stanford on Saturday. The Cardinal’s first loss of the season is early enough to rebound back into the BCS title contention, but Stanford still has to play Oregon and UCLA.

Utah’s win over Stanford was arguably its biggest since it joined the Pac-12 and should be enough for the Utes to get back to a bowl game.

USC had a solid showing in the first game of the post-Lane Kiffin era, defeating Arizona 38-31.

Arizona State, UCLA and Oregon State scored blowout victories, while Oregon picked up a huge 45-21 win at Washington.

More Post-Week 7 Power Rankings: ACC | Big 12 | Big Ten | SEC

Pac-12 Post-Week 7 Power Rankings

RankTeamLWAnalysis
11Oregon (6-0, 3-0): With Stanford losing to Utah, it’s clear the Pac-12 title runs through Eugene. The Ducks passed their biggest test of the season with a 45-24 victory over Washington on Saturday. Quarterback Marcus Mariota was simply flawless against the Huskies, throwing for 366 yards and three scores and rushing for 88 yards and one touchdown on 13 attempts. The Ducks’ defense delivered with some timely stops, recorded five sacks and seven tackles for a loss, and held Washington quarterback Keith Price to just 182 passing yards. Assuming Oregon beats Washington State this Saturday, the Ducks’ national title hopes could hinge on a two-game stretch of a home game against UCLA and a road date at Stanford. Next Week: Washington State
24UCLA (5-0, 2-0): Thanks to Stanford’s loss at Utah, the Bruins climb to the No. 2 spot in the Pac-12 power rankings. The Bruins defeated California 37-10 on Saturday, improving to 5-0 for the first time since 2005. Although it was a comfortable 27-point win, UCLA shouldn’t be satisfied with its performance. The rushing attack had only 78 yards, and California exploited the offensive line for eight tackles for a loss and two sacks. The Bruins are favorite to win the Pac-12 South, but this team’s toughest tests of 2013 have yet to come. Next Week: at Stanford 
32Stanford (5-1, 3-1): The Cardinal’s national title hopes took a huge hit with a 27-21 loss in Salt Lake City. Stanford trailed Utah 27-14 early in the fourth quarter but rallied with a touchdown pass from quarterback Kevin Hogan to receiver Devon Cajuste. The Cardinal had a chance to take the lead with less than a minute to go, but Hogan’s pass fell incomplete on fourth and goal, giving the Utes a huge upset win. Utah outgained Stanford 415 to 389, and the Utes’ defensive line outplayed the Cardinal’s offensive line. If Stanford wants to get back into the national title picture, it will have a chance in the next three weeks with games against UCLA, Oregon State and Oregon. Next Week: UCLA
4 Washington (4-2, 1-2): The Huskies are 1-2 in Pac-12 play, but we have to give some credit in terms of overall schedule difficulty. Washington held its own against Stanford last week and traded punches with Oregon, trailing only 31-24 going into the fourth quarter. The Huskies have closed the gap in the Pac-12 North, but coach Steve Sarkisian still has more work to do. Washington’s road in conference play won’t get any easier this week, as a trip to Tempe awaits. Next Week: at Arizona State  
5 Arizona State (4-2, 2-1): As expected, the Sun Devils didn’t have much trouble with Colorado. Arizona State led 47-6 at halftime against the Buffaloes and cruised to an easy 54-13 victory. The Sun Devils finished with 532 overall yards, which included a solid performance from running back Marion Grice (88 yards, two scores). Arizona State’s defense feasted on Colorado’s offensive, recording four sacks, seven tackles for a loss and forcing four turnovers. The Sun Devils are chasing UCLA for the top spot in the Pac-12 South, with the Nov. 23 date looking like a de facto division title game. Next Week: Washington
6 Oregon State (5-1, 3-0): The Beavers have been on fire since losing to Eastern Washington, recording five straight victories. Oregon State’s offense has led the way, as the Beavers average 506.8 yards per game, and quarterback Sean Mannion and receiver Brandin Cooks are one of the top pass-catch combinations in the nation. The defense has struggled at times this year but stepped up with six turnovers in the 52-24 win over Washington State. Assuming Oregon State beats California next Saturday, the Oct. 26 showdown against Stanford will have huge Pac-12 North title implications. Next Week: at California
79Utah (4-2, 1-2): The Utes’ No. 7 ranking in the power rankings shows just how deep the Pac-12 is this season. Utah pulled off one of the biggest upsets of 2013 by defeating Stanford 27-21 on Saturday. Both sides of the ball delivered for the Utes, as quarterback Travis Wilson threw for 234 yards, and running back Bubba Poole chipped in 111 yards on the ground, while recording seven receptions for 75 yards. The defense had only two sacks but made plays at key times, including a fourth and goal in the final minute. Another sign of how good Utah has been this year: The Utes lost by seven to UCLA and just by three to Oregon State. Beating Stanford was no fluke. Next Week: at Arizona
810USC (4-2, 1-2): The Trojans looked like a different team in Thursday night’s win over Arizona. With Ed Orgeron now in control, USC seemed to play loose and it clearly showed on the field. The offense recorded 546 yards (7.3 yards per play), including two 60-yard touchdown passes in the first quarter. Running back Silas Redd made his 2013 debut, rushing for 80 yards on 19 attempts. The defense gave up 508 yards to the Wildcats, but it’s easier for USC to win games when the offense scores 38 points and wins the time of possession battle by seven minutes. The Trojans have a tough schedule in the second half of the season, but if the same effort against Arizona is there in the next six games, USC will find a way into a bowl. Next Week: at Notre Dame
97Arizona (3-2, 0-2): After a 3-0 start, the Wildcats have dropped their last two games. However, losses to Washington and USC are nothing to be ashamed about. In Thursday night’s defeat at USC, Arizona’s passing attack showed signs of life after struggling early in the year, as quarterback B.J. Denker threw for 363 yards and four touchdowns. The Wildcats will have a chance to gain some ground over the next few weeks, as they will likely be favored to beat Utah, Colorado and California. Next Week: Utah
108Washington State (4-3, 2-2): Although the final scoreboard read 52-24, Saturday’s loss to Oregon State wasn’t quite as one-sided as the score would indicate. The Cougars were tied with the Beavers going into the fourth quarter, but turnovers on five consecutive drives allowed Oregon State’s offense to pull away in the final 15 minutes. Washington State has clearly made progress in coach Mike Leach’s second season and need two wins to get bowl eligible. However, the schedule isn’t kind, and the Cougars have to do a better job of holding onto the ball after losing 20 turnovers through the first seven games. Next Week: at Oregon
1111Colorado (2-3, 0-3): The Buffaloes dropped their third consecutive game, losing 54-13 to Arizona State. Colorado was simply overmatched against the Sun Devils, falling behind 47-6 by halftime and being outgained 532 to 268. Freshman quarterback Sefo Liufau made his debut on Saturday, completing 18 of 26 passes for 169 yards and one touchdown. There’s no denying this is a rebuilding year for the Buffaloes, so getting Liufau some experience in the final seven games is a good idea as Colorado builds to 2014. Next Week: Charleston Southern
1212California (1-5, 0-3): After four consecutive losses, the Golden Bears are reeling in coach Sonny Dykes’ first season. Several factors are to blame for the struggles, but the defense, which is dealing with a plethora of injuries, has been the primary culprit. California held UCLA to 37 points on Saturday, but the Golden Bears have lost by 20 points in three consecutive games. Quarterback Jared Goff only threw for 215 yards against UCLA, but the freshman passer didn’t have much help from a rushing attack that managed 2.8 yards per carry. The schedule isn’t getting any easier for California, as Oregon State, Washington, Arizona and USC are its next four games. Next Week: Oregon State

Pac-12 Week 7 Awards

by Braden Gall

 

Offensive Player of the Week: Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
The Ducks quarterback was brilliant again, this time on the road against a ranked divisional foe and rival. Mariota led the Ducks to an easy 45-24 win over Washington by completing 24-of-31 passes for 366 yards and three touchdowns through the air. He added 88 yards rushing on 13 carries and another touchdown on the ground. He is now 18-1 as a starter with 63 career total touchdowns and just six interceptions. Mariota hasn't thrown a pick in 233 attempts.

Defensive Player of the Week: Nate Orchard, LB, Utah
Fellow defensive linemates Trevor Reilly and Tenny Palepoi have made more plays and garnered more headlines through five games, but Saturday night's upset of Stanford was Orchard's coming out party. He registered his second and third sack of the season and forced two huge fumbles for a Utah defense that simply outplayed the Cardinal for most of the game. He finished with five total tackles on the night and was a big part of the final minute goal-line stand that won the game for the Utes.

Team of the Week: Utah 
The Utes shocked the college football world by handling the Stanford Cardinal with relative ease. The 27-21 win over the No. 5 team in the nation wasn't a fluke as Utah outgained Stanford, won the turnover battle, were penalized just four times and won the time of possession game. Travis Wilson was solid (234 yards, two touchdowns, interception, 33 rush yards) at quarterback and the running game carried the offense (39 carries, 176 yards) while the defense capitalized on two critical fumbles. It was the first win for Utah in Rice-Eccles Stadium over a top-five team.

Co-Coordinator of the Week: Dennis Erickson and Kalani Sitake, Utah
The defense played well for Utah under the leadership of coordinator Kalani Sitake, holding Stanford to just 21 points and 389 yards of offense while forcing two critical turnovers and holding Stanford to a season-low 13 first downs. Offensively, the Utes might have been even more impressive. Erickson's squad, led by quarterback Travis Wilson, averaged 5.7 yards per play, the worst number allowed by Stanford all season. The Utes rushed for 181 yards against the vaunted Cardinal front seven, a number only topped by Army's triple option (284 in Week 3). Wilson completed 67.6-percent of his passes.

 

Freshman of the Week: Andy Phillips, K, Utah
The freshman placekicker has been literally perfect all season for the Utes and he came up big in the upset win over Stanford. While Stanford missed its one field goal chance, Phillips made drilled two second-half field goals, including a long 48-yarder, that eventually gave Utah its margin of victory. He made all three extra points and has yet to miss a kick of any kind all season. In fact, no kicker in the nation has made more field goals without missing than Phillips (11-for-11) and he is 27-for-27 on extra points.

 

Fifth Down

 

• Despite the loss, Washington's Bishop Sankey continues to shine. He rushed for 167 yards and two scores against Oregon and is leading the nation in rushing at 149.8 yards per game. Sankey has scored a rushing TD in at least eight straight games and has scored multiple touchdowns in nine of his last 17 games.

 

• Arizona State's Taylor Kelly failed to throw for at least 300 yards (233) for the first time all season. But the ASU fans will take it, as the Sun Devils rolled Colorado 54-13.

 

• Brett Hundley continued his Heisman season for UCLA by throwing for a career-high 410 yards. It was his first 400-yard game of his career.

 

• After holding Cal to just 320 yards, the Bruins have now allowed between 320 and 387 yards of total offense in every game. The number was a season low for Sonny Dykes' Golden Bears.

 

• With 4:50 to go in the third quarter, Washington State was leading Oregon State 24-17. The Beavers scored five unanswered touchdowns over the final 16 minutes of play to post an easy road win over Wazzu.

 

• Oregon State's Sean Mannion threw for 493 yards and four touchdowns. Mannion (51) and WSU's Connor Halliday (49) combined for exactly 100 pass attempts in the Beavers' 52-24 win.

 

• De'Anthony Thomas was active for the game against Washington but didn't play. He should be back on the field by next week.

 

• Silas Redd returned to the field for USC against Arizona. He rushed for 80 yards on 19 carries but many of those yards came on critical carries late in the game.

 

Teaser:
2013 Pac-12 Post-Week 7 Power Rankings
Post date: Monday, October 14, 2013 - 07:20
All taxonomy terms: College Football, LSU Tigers, SEC, News
Path: /college-football/lsu-coach-les-miles-has-postgame-rant-after-beating-florida
Body:

It’s been a while since a college football coach had a good rant.

Thankfully, LSU coach Les Miles was feeling a little feisty after Saturday’s win against Florida.

Miles was asked about a hammer and nails in relation to last year’s loss at Florida….and his response was priceless:

Teaser:
LSU Coach Les Miles Has Postgame Rant After Beating Florida
Post date: Monday, October 14, 2013 - 01:28
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With Florida State and Miami on bye, Week 7 was off the radar in terms of national attention. However, Saturday’s games set the table for what should be an interesting second half of the season in the ACC.

Clemson survived an upset bid by Boston College, while Virginia Tech won its sixth consecutive game by defeating Pittsburgh 19-9.

Duke and Syracuse scored key victories, which should help both teams in the race to get bowl eligible .

Elsewhere around the ACC, Georgia Tech lost its third consecutive game, while Maryland defeated Virginia 27-26 without starting quarterback C.J. Brown.

ACC Week 7 Recap and Awards

Offensive Player of the Week: Anthony Boone, QB, Duke
Still recovering from a collarbone injury, Boone wasn’t guaranteed to start Saturday’s game against Navy. However, Brandon Connette was injured after practice on Thursday and was ruled out just before kickoff. Boone was Duke’s starter prior to his injury against Memphis on Sept. 7, and the junior was sharp in his return to the starting lineup. Boone completed 31 of 38 throws for 295 yards and three scores. The junior did not throw an interception, and the 295 passing yards were the best by Boone in his three starts in 2013.

Defensive Player of the Week: Vic Beasley, DE, Clemson
Beasley gets the nod for the second week in a row as Athlon’s ACC defensive player of the week. The junior recorded five tackles (two for a loss), one pass breakup and one sack in a 24-14 win over Boston College. Those numbers are solid, but Beasley’s biggest contribution came in the fourth quarter. Linebacker Tony Steward forced a fumble from Boston College quarterback Chase Rettig, which Beasley picked up and returned for a 13-yard touchdown. The score gave Clemson a 10-point cushion, which was enough to hold off the Eagles’ upset bid.

Coordinator of the Week: Jim Knowles, Duke
Duke’s defense has received plenty of criticism over the last two years, as the Blue Devils finished 11th in the ACC in total defense last season and allowed 36 points a game. And in the first five games of 2013, Duke ranked 12th in the ACC in total defense, allowing 400 yards per game. However, the Blue Devils turned in one of their best defensive performances against a FBS team in recent years, as Navy was held to seven points and 230 rushing yards. The Midshipmen did not score a point in the second half and lost three turnovers. The seven points allowed by Duke was the fewest against a FBS team since holding Vanderbilt to just seven points in 2008. Although the Blue Devils have struggled at times on defense, Knowles and the defensive staff deserve a lot of credit for the performance against Navy.

Team of the Week: Virginia Tech
The pickings are slim here, but let’s give a tip of the cap to Virginia Tech. The Hokies used another strong defensive effort to beat Pittsburgh on Saturday, moving to 6-1 on the season. Last year, Virginia Tech won six games in the regular season and needed a bowl victory over Rutgers to get to 7-6. The offense is still a work in progress, averaging only 328.4 yards per game. However, quarterback Logan Thomas has not thrown an interception in three games. The Hokies are holding opponents to just 256 yards per game and only one opponent has scored more than 20 points in a contest this year.

Freshman of the Week: Jack Tocho, CB, NC State
Tocho made his first start of the season against Syracuse and made an instant impact for NC State’s defense. The true freshman recorded three tackles and picked off Syracuse quarterback Terrel Hunt twice. Tocho also added one pass breakup. The three-star recruit injured his shoulder against the Orange but made a solid contribution for NC State’s defense when he was on the field.

5th Down

• Pittsburgh averaged just 3.8 yards per play against Virginia Tech.

• Maryland linebacker L.A. Goree turned in a strong performance against Virginia, recording 15 stops (with one tackle for a loss).

• In Saturday’s game against Clemson, Boston College running back Andre Williams was held under 100 yards for only the second time this season.

• Virginia Tech’s defense recorded eight sacks against Pittsburgh, with three coming from Dadi Nicolas.

• Virginia quarterback David Watford threw for a season-high 263 yards against Maryland.

• Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald recorded three tackles for a loss and two sacks against Virginia Tech.

• Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd has thrown for at least 300 yards in each of his last three games.

• Syracuse scored its first ACC win by beating NC State 24-10 on Saturday.

• Georgia Tech defensive tackle Adam Gotsis recorded four tackles for a loss and two sacks against BYU.

• For the first time since 2011, Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas has not tossed an interception in three consecutive games. 

Teaser:
2013 ACC Week 7 Recap and Awards
Post date: Sunday, October 13, 2013 - 13:23
All taxonomy terms: College Football, Missouri Tigers, SEC, News
Path: /college-football/missouri-qb-james-franklin-separates-shoulder-against-georgia
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Missouri staked its claim in the SEC East on Saturday with a huge road victory over Georgia.

However, the win was costly for the Tigers, as quarterback James Franklin suffered a separated shoulder in the second half and is out indefinitely. The school has not released how long Franklin will be sidelined, but various reports indicate the senior will likely miss six weeks.

Franklin was injured throughout the 2012 season, which was a big reason why Missouri finished 5-7. However, Franklin looked 100 percent this season and had 14 touchdowns and only three picks prior to his injury.

With Franklin sidelined, redshirt freshman Maty Mauk will start under center. Prior to the game against Georgia, Mauk had thrown only three passes in his career.

Mauk will have his hands full the next few weeks, as Missouri hosts Florida, South Carolina in back-to-back games. The redshirt freshman has a tough assignment, but the experience will be valuable as he should be the Tigers’ quarterback in 2014.

There’s no question Franklin will be missed, and his injury is a huge setback for a Missouri team off to a 6-0 start.

 

Teaser:
Missouri QB James Franklin Separates Shoulder Against Georgia
Post date: Saturday, October 12, 2013 - 19:02
Path: /college-football/texas-qb-case-mccoy-gets-destroyed-oklahomas-eric-striker
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Texas quarterback Case McCoy was destroyed by Oklahoma linebacker Eric Striker in the first half of the Red River Rivalry.

Check out this hit, which might be one of the biggest of the 2013 season:

Teaser:
Texas QB Case McCoy Gets Destroyed by Oklahoma's Eric Striker
Post date: Saturday, October 12, 2013 - 13:27
Path: /college-football/missouri-tigers-vs-georgia-bulldogs-2013-preview-and-prediction
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Missouri versus Georgia is suddenly a big game in the SEC. The Tigers are clearly improved in their second season in the SEC, and a win over the Bulldogs would put coach Gary Pinkel’s team in the mix with Florida and South Carolina for the top spot in the East Division.

The Tigers haven’t played the most challenging schedule but are 5-0 and handled Vanderbilt in their SEC opener. Missouri also has a solid road win at Indiana and has scored at least 38 points in every game this season.

Georgia’s path to a 4-1 record featured one of the most difficult slates in the nation. The Bulldogs lost at Clemson in the opener but rebounded with four consecutive wins. In addition to a victory over North Texas, Georgia defeated South Carolina 41-30 and LSU 44-41 and survived an upset bid by Tennessee 34-31 in overtime last week. 

These two teams have met only twice, with Georgia winning both matchups. Prior to last season’s game, the only previous matchup between these two schools was in the 1960 Orange Bowl.

Missouri vs. Georgia

Kickoff: 12 ET
TV Channel: ESPN
Spread: Georgia -8

Three Things to Watch

How will Georgia stop Missouri QB James Franklin?
What a difference a year makes. After battling various ailments and recovering from offseason shoulder surgery last season, Franklin looks like a different quarterback in 2013. The senior has thrown for 1,407 yards and 13 touchdowns and is completing 67.9 percent of his throws. Franklin has also rushed for 278 yards and two scores and has already surpassed his total offense total (1,684) from last season. Georgia’s defense returned only three starters this season, and this unit is still a work in progress after five games. The Bulldogs rank 10th in the SEC in yards allowed 12th in pass defense. In addition to stopping Franklin, Missouri has a strong supporting cast, led by receiver Dorial Green-Beckham and running backs Russell Hansbrough and Henry Josey. Franklin’s dual-threat ability will be a huge test for Georgia’s defense, especially after the Bulldogs allowed Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd to record 312 yards and five scores in the opener.

Aaron Murray’s supporting cast
Injuries have decimated Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray’s supporting cast. Running back Todd Gurley did not play in last week’s win over Tennessee due to a sprained ankle and is not expected to play against Missouri. The Bulldogs also lost running back Keith Marshall for the season with a torn ACL last week, which means freshmen J.J. Green and Brendan Douglas will shoulder the workload on the ground. Green has been a capable option in limited action (8.8 ypc), and the coaching staff may pull the redshirt off of A.J. Turman this week. As if the injuries at running back weren’t enough, Georgia is shorthanded at receiver. Malcolm Mitchell was lost for the year in the opener due to a torn ACL, and Michael Bennett and Justin Scott-Wesley were injured against Tennessee last week. Bennett is out indefinitely, while Scott-Wesley will miss the rest of the season. Senior Rhett McGowan and junior Chris Conley are capable options at receiver, but depth is a concern. Expect the Bulldogs to involve tight ends Arthur Lynch and Jay Rome more in the passing game this week. Murray is one of the nation’s best quarterbacks, but how much transition time will it require with the changes in his supporting cast?

Missouri’s DL vs. Georgia’s OL
Missouri’s defensive line was considered by most to be a weakness this preseason. But the Tigers have been strong in the trenches so far, as end Michael Sam is tied for the SEC lead with six sacks, and opponents are managing just 118.6 rushing yards per game this season. Sam isn’t the only player off to a good start on the line, as end Kony Ealy has two sacks and tackles Lucas Vincent and Matt Hoch have combined for 19 stops. Only one player (Toledo’s David Fluellen) has rushed for more than 100 yards on Missouri’s defense so far this season. Georgia’s offensive line allowed four sacks in the opener against Clemson but allowed just three in the other four games. Will Sam continue his hot start to the season? Or will Georgia’s offensive line control the line of scrimmage? This battle will be a matchup to watch on Saturday.

Key Player: J.J. Green, RB, Georgia
With Gurley not expected to play and Keith Marshall out for the season, Green has to carry the ground attack against Missouri. The Tigers rank third in the SEC against the run, holding opponents to 118.6 yards per game. Prior to last week’s game against Tennessee, the freshman had only five carries in his career. Against the Volunteers, Green stepped up with the game on the line, recording 129 yards on 17 attempts. Considering the depth issues here, Green will be needed for 25-30 rushes on Saturday, which will surpass the 22 he has through five appearances this year. Quarterback Aaron Murray is one of the best in the nation, but he can’t win this game on his own. Will Green give the Bulldogs 100 yards on Saturday?  

Final Analysis

With all of its injuries, Georgia will have its hands full with a much-improved Missouri team. The Tigers shouldn’t have much trouble moving the ball against the Bulldogs, but Georgia’s athletic and fast defense will be the best the Tigers have faced this season. The Bulldogs pass-rush duo of Jordan Jenkins and Leonard Floyd should be able to exploit Missouri’s offensive line, which has allowed 11 sacks through five games. Quarterback James Franklin threw for 269 yards against the Bulldogs last year and will need over 300 total yards for the Tigers to win on Saturday.

Missouri shows its 5-0 start is no fluke with a strong performance in Athens. However, Georgia is the better team and once again, will find a way to win.

Prediction: Georgia 34, Missouri 27

Teaser:
Missouri Tigers vs. Georgia Bulldogs 2013 Preview and Prediction
Post date: Saturday, October 12, 2013 - 07:30
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/college-football-week-7-upset-predictions-2013
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Conference play is officially underway across all 10 college football leagues.

And with conference play starting, the potential for upsets has increased. Teams in the same league have a certain level of familiarity and recruit a lot of the same players.

Although college football has yet to see a huge upset among the top-10 teams, it’s still likely to happen at some point this season.

Athlon’s experts are back with another week of upset predictions. South Florida, Michigan and Miami (Ohio) are popular picks as underdogs this week.

The favorites can't win every game each week, so it's no surprise one of the most popular discussion points every Saturday is upset picks. Each week on AthlonSports.com, the editors will give an upset pick for the upcoming week of action.

Week 7 Previews and Predictions: ACC |Big Ten | Big 12Pac-12 | SEC

College Football Week 7 Upset Predictions

Steven Lassan (@AthlonSteven): South Florida (+5.5) over Connecticut
The Huskies may find a spark under interim coach TJ Weist, but I think the Bulls are the better team and have momentum after last week’s win over Cincinnati. Connecticut made a quarterback change during the bye week, as freshman Tim Boyle has replaced Chandler Whitmer in the starting lineup. However, the Huskies still have major problems on the offensive line and average just 1.4 yards per rush. South Florida’s offense hasn’t been much better, but the Bulls are coming off a season-high 26 points against Cincinnati last week. Quarterback Steven Bench and running back Michael Shaw are questionable due to injuries, but South Florida’s defense should be enough to win a close, ugly affair in Storrs this week.


Braden Gall (@BradenGall): Penn State (+3) over Michigan
The Nittany Lions are coming off a horrendous showing at Indiana, losing to the Hoosiers for the first time in 17 tries. Michigan has had its issues (see UConn and Akron) and simply isn't as good as their perfect record and top 20 ranking indicate. Brady Hoke's group played a near perfect game against Minnesota last week and cannot be expected to play that cleanly every week. The Maize and Blue haven't beaten Penn State since 2007 and have lost three straight in the series. A home game against a brand like Michigan would begin to create the legend of Christian Hackenberg in Happy Valley. And no one has proven to have an answer for Penn State receiver Allen Robinson this season.


Mark Ross: Miami (Ohio) (+3.5) over UMass
This is the farthest thing from a marquee matchup on this week's slate, and not just because this is a Mid-American Conference (MAC) game. Don't get me wrong, the MAC has some strong teams, led by No. 23-ranked Northern Illinois. It also has some not-so-great teams, which is where the RedHawks and Minutemen come in. Neither has yet to win a game, with the closest defeat being a 10-point loss by UMass to FCS member Maine. Miami (Ohio) has already fired its head coach, and combined these two teams have scored 79 points in 10 games. Baylor is averaging more than 70 points PER game. But the Bears aren't playing in this game, and either the RedHawks or the Minutemen are going to finally get in the win column, if anything because there are no ties in college football. For no reason other than entertainment purposes, I'll pick Miami to pull the road upset. After all, what would be more fitting than RedHawks interim head coach Mike Bath getting one (the Gatorade variety) in his first game?


David Fox (@DavidFox615): Missouri (+8) over Georgia
Not a lot of obvious upset bait this week. I thought of picking Bowling Green over Mississippi State, but it’s tough to forget Indiana’s rout of the Falcons. Missouri may not be a realistic SEC East contender, but the Tigers may be good enough to beat a wounded Georgia team on the road. This may be the week for Georgia to stumble, if it wasn’t last week. Too many injuries on the offensive side of the ball mean a lot of new players working with the offense, not to mention the emotional toll by all those injuries. Mizzou may sense a chance to pounce. With all the great quarterbacks in the SEC this season, James Franklin is overlooked. He could change that a major performance in Athens.

Teaser:
Post date: Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 13:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football, TCU Horned Frogs
Path: /college-football/tcu-de-devonte-fields-out-season-foot-injury
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TCU’s defense suffered a blow on Wednesday, as end Devonte Fields will miss the rest of the season with a foot injury.

Fields was the Big 12’s Defensive Freshman of the Year last season and was selected as the Associated Press Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year.

In 13 games last year, Fields recorded 53 tackles, 18.5 tackles for a loss and 10 sacks.

However, Fields never got on track in 2013, as he was suspended for the first two games and only recorded four tackles (two for a loss) in his limited snaps.

Although Fields will be missed, TCU’s defense is still one of the best in the Big 12. The Horned Frogs rank fourth in the conference in total defense after five games and shouldn’t slip too far with Fields sidelined for the year.

Teaser:
Post date: Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 13:00
All taxonomy terms: ACC, College Football
Path: /college-football/acc-week-7-preview-and-predictions-2013
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There isn't a huge game with national interest in the ACC this Saturday, but there is no shortage of intrigue.

Pittsburgh has quietly improved to 3-1 after losing its opener, and the Panthers have a chance to stake their claim in the Coastal Division race with a win at Virginia Tech this week.

Georgia Tech is reeling just a bit after back-to-back losses, and the Yellow Jackets won’t get a break with a trip to BYU this Saturday. Georgia Tech’s offense will have its hands full against the Cougars’ active front seven.

Virginia-Maryland, Syracuse-NC State and Boston College-Clemson are the other contests within conference play this week. Due to realignment, this is the last scheduled matchup between the Terrapins and Cavaliers. The Wolfpack and Orange are both searching for a win after losing last week, while the Tigers are a heavy favorite against Boston College.

Duke steps out of conference play for a tough matchup against Navy this Saturday. The Blue Devils will be fighting just to get bowl eligible this year, so beating the Midshipmen is a must if this team wants to get to six wins.

Week 7 Previews and Predictions: Big Ten | Big 12Pac-12 | SEC

ACC Week 7 Game Power Rankings

1. Pittsburgh (+9) at Virginia Tech (12 ET, ESPNU)
After six weeks, the Coastal Division looks like a two-team race between Virginia Tech and Miami. But is it time to add Pittsburgh to the top tier of the division? Saturday’s game in Blacksburg is a good measuring stick for the Panthers, as coach Paul Chryst’s team has rebounded with three wins in a row after losing to Florida State in the opener. Led by their defense, the Hokies have won five in a row, but the offense is starting to show some signs of life. Quarterback Logan Thomas isn’t putting up huge numbers. However, the senior hasn’t thrown an interception in two games and has completed at least 67 percent of his passes in the last two contests. Without a consistent running game, much of Virginia Tech’s offensive success will rest on No. 3’s shoulders. Despite returning eight starters, Pittsburgh’s defense has struggled this year. The Panthers rank 10th in the ACC in total defense and have forced just seven turnovers and nine sacks in four games. While the defense has struggled, Pittsburgh’s offense averages 6.4 yards per play and freshmen Tyler Boyd (WR) and James Conner (RB) have provided a boost for this unit. But the big concern for the Panthers against Virginia Tech will be an offensive line that has allowed 13 sacks this season. The Hokies lead the ACC in total defense (263.7 ypg) and have generated 19 sacks and 16 turnovers. Pittsburgh beat Virginia Tech last season, but the Panthers will have their hands full against the Hokies’ defense.

2. Georgia Tech (+7) at BYU (7 ET, ESPN2)
After back-to-back games against Virginia Tech and Miami, the schedule doesn’t get any easier for Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets travel to Provo, Utah on Saturday to play BYU – a team they lost 41-17 to last season. The Cougars have lost both of their games this season by a combined 10 points and have won two in a row after a 1-2 start. Winning the battle in the trenches is crucial for both teams on Saturday. Georgia Tech’s rushing attack averages 300 yards per game, but BYU’s front seven is loaded with talent, including senior linebacker Kyle Van Noy, who has seven tackles for a loss this year. The Yellow Jackets could be shorthanded on the offensive line, as tackles Ray Beno and Morgan Bailey may not play due to injury. The Cougars are holding opponents to just 3.5 yards per rush this year, so it’s critical for Georgia Tech quarterback Vad Lee to loosen up the front seven with the passing game. Lee has struggled in the last two games after a fast start, completing just 10 of 37 passes for 207 yards and two interceptions in the last two games. Georgia Tech’s defense allowed 45 points to Miami last week but ranks fourth in the ACC in total defense (330.6 ypg). BYU’s offense is led by dual-threat quarterback Taysom Hill, but running back Jamaal Williams and receiver Cody Hoffman are also dangerous options. 

3. Virginia (+7) at Maryland (3:30 ET, ESPNU)
Due to realignment, this is the last scheduled meeting between these two programs. Maryland and Virginia have met every year since 1957, with the Terrapins owning a 43-32-2 series edge. Both teams enter Saturday’s game reeling after disappointing losses last week. The Cavaliers were upset 48-27 by Ball State, while Maryland was dominated in a 63-0 defeat at Florida State. Terrapins’ quarterback C.J. Brown suffered a concussion against the Seminoles, and his status for Saturday’s game is uncertain. If Brown doesn’t start, Maryland’s offense is in good hands with Caleb Rowe, who started one game last season. The Cavaliers’ defense struggled to stop Ball State and Oregon, but in its other three games, Virginia’s opponents combined for just 30 points. While the Cavaliers’ defense is capable of keeping this one close, the offense remains a huge concern. Virginia showed some signs of life against Ball State (5.5 yards per play) but ranks 12th in the ACC in total offense and is last in the conference in yards per play (4.3). With injuries knocking out its top two cornerbacks, Maryland likes to bring pressure to protect its secondary, recording 18 sacks in five games. The Cavaliers have won three in a row in College Park, but will have trouble earning the victory in this one if the offense doesn’t play better.

4. Navy (+3) at Duke (12:30 ET, ACC Network)
Getting back to a bowl game isn’t an easy task for Duke, which is why this week’s game against Navy is a must-win matchup. The Blue Devils trail in the overall series to the Midshipmen (20-14-5) but have won the last two meetings. There should be no shortage of points on Saturday, and Duke could have quarterback Anthony Boone back in the lineup after missing the last three games with a collarbone injury. If Boone can’t play, the Blue Devils’ offense is in good hands with backup Brandon Connette, who ranks sixth in the ACC in total offense (249.2). Duke will need all of the points it can get on Saturday, especially since its defense ranks 10th in the ACC against the run and 12th in scoring defense. Navy averages 403.5 yards per game on the ground, with quarterback Keenan Reynolds the catalyst for the option attack. Preparing for a triple-option offense is never easy, but the Blue Devils have had two weeks to get ready. A bad sign for Duke: Georgia Tech rushed for 344 yards against the Blue Devils in their matchup earlier this season.

5. Syracuse (+6.5) at NC State (3:30 ET, RSN)
Syracuse and NC State are looking to get back in the win column after both teams suffered losses last week. The Orange was simply overmatched in a 49-14 loss against Clemson, while NC State was upset 28-13 by Wake Forest. The Wolfpack are hoping to get quarterback Brandon Mitchell back in the lineup this Saturday, but the senior’s status is likely a gametime decision after suffering a broken foot in the season opener. Syracuse is also looking for answers at quarterback, as Terrel Hunt played well against Wagner and Tulane but completed just 8 of 24 throws (with three interceptions) against Clemson last Saturday. With both teams dealing with some uncertainty at quarterback, the ground attack will be crucial on this week. Syracuse ranks fifth in the ACC in rushing offense, while NC State is sixth. Jerome Smith leads the way for the Orange (342 yards), while the Wolfpack has seven players with at least 100 rushing yards this season. NC State holds an edge on defense, limiting opponents to five yards a play and ranks second in the ACC against the run. NC State owns a 6-0 series edge against Syracuse, but these two teams have not played since 1998.

6. Boston College (+24.5) at Clemson (3:30 ET, ESPN2/ABC)
With a huge showdown against Florida State next Saturday, this matchup has to be designated as a potential trap game for Clemson. Boston College has improved significantly under new coach Steve Addazio, already surpassing its win total from 2012 after five games. Running back Andre Williams leads the ACC with 153.6 rushing yards per game and faces a Clemson defense ranked 12th in the conference against the run. Opponents are averaging 4.2 yards per rush against the Tigers, so Williams should expect to see a heavy workload on Saturday, especially as Boston College looks to keep Clemson’s offense on the sideline. Quarterback Tajh Boyd has been sharp for the Tigers this year, completing 66 percent of his throws and averaging 289.8 yards per game. Boston College’s defense will have its hands full against Clemson’s offense, as this unit has allowed at least 27 points in each of its last three games, including 48 to Florida State. Coordinator Don Brown loves to blitz, but the Eagles could be vulnerable to the big play against the Tigers’ receiving corps. If Boston College gets Williams on track, it has a chance to shorten this game and hang around until the fourth quarter. But the Eagles’ biggest nightmare would be an early 17-0 or 21-0 lead by Clemson, as they just aren’t built to rally from a huge deficit. 

ACC Week 7 Pivotal Players

Adam Bisnowaty, OT, Pittsburgh
The Panthers are tied for the most sacks allowed in the ACC with 13 after four games. Quarterback Tom Savage is a talented drop-back passer, but the senior doesn’t have much mobility. Virginia Tech’s defensive line is deep and talented, recording 19 sacks in six games and limiting opponents to just 263.7 yards per game. Bisnowaty will be matched against ends James Gayle or J.R. Collins, and the freshman will have a tough time trying to slow down the Hokies’ dynamic pass-rush duo.

Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech
If Pittsburgh can protect quarterback Tom Savage, the Panthers will have a chance to make plays downfield with receivers Tyler Boyd and Devin Street. The Hokies will counter with a deep secondary, with senior Kyle Fuller (21 tackles, 2 INT, 7 PBU) and freshmen Kyle Fuller and Brandon Facyson also in the mix. Virginia Tech’s secondary could get even deeper this week, as senior Antone Exum is close to returning from a knee injury. The matchup between Boyd/Street and the Hokies’ pass defense will be one of the top individual battles in the ACC this year.

Grady Jarrett, DT, Clemson
Boston College would like to control the clock and limit the possessions by Clemson’s offense this Saturday. In order for the Eagles to accomplish that, running back Andre Williams needs to have another big game. The senior is averaging 153.6 yards per game this season and faces a Clemson defense allowing 171.2 yards per game. Jarrett is crucial to slowing down Williams, as the junior needs to win the battle on the line of scrimmage. 

Vad Lee, QB, Georgia Tech
After starting the year 22 of 39 for 418 yards and seven touchdowns, Lee has completed just 12 of 37 passes for 207 yards and three interceptions in his last two games. And the sophomore is averaging just 2.9 yards per carry with only three touchdowns this season. BYU’s secondary hasn’t played the strongest group of quarterbacks this year, but this unit was hit hard by injuries in the preseason. Lee needs to execute the option better and has to hit a few plays in the passing game against the Cougars. However, BYU’s front seven is stout, led by senior linebacker Kyle Van Noy and 305-pound nose tackle Eathyn Manumaleuna.

Kevin Parks, RB, Virginia
With quarterback David Watford struggling to get on track this year, the Cavaliers need more production from the rushing attack. Parks is averaging 79.6 yards per game but rushed for only 34 yards in Virginia’s only ACC contest this year. Maryland ranks third in the ACC against the run (115.4 ypg) and features underrated nose tackle Darius Kilgo anchoring the line. Parks needs to have at least 100 yards for the Cavaliers to win on Saturday.

ACC Week 7 Predictions

GameDavid FoxBraden GallSteven LassanMitch Light
Pittsburgh (+9) at Va. TechVa. Tech 28-21Va. Tech 34-30Va. Tech 27-20Va. Tech 24-17
Navy (+3) at DukeNavy 35-28Navy 24-23Navy 34-30Duke 27-17
Syracuse (+6.5) at NC StateNC State 24-21NC State 31-28NC State 31-24NC State 24-17
Virginia (+7) at MarylandMaryland 35-10Maryland 34-13Maryland 31-17Maryland 34-20
Boston College (+24.5) at ClemsonClemson 35-10Clemson 44-17Clemson 45-20Clemson 41-17
Georgia Tech (+7) at BYUBYU 38-31BYU 34-31BYU 27-24BYU 28-20
Record46-1047-947-947-9

 

Teaser:
Post date: Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 08:00
Path: /college-football/tennessee-virginia-tech-play-bristol-motor-speedway-2016
Body:

In what has been rumored for years, Tennessee and Virginia Tech have finally agreed to a game at Bristol Motor Speedway. The game will take place in 2016, but no date has been officially announced.

The Hokies and Volunteers should draw a huge crowd for the game, as both programs are located less than two hours from NASCAR's fastest half-mile track.



 

Teaser:
Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 18:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/college-footballs-link-roundup-october-9
Body:

Almost at the halfway point of the 2013 season.

Contact us on twitter with a link or a tip we should include each day. (@AthlonSteven)

College Football's Must-Read Stories Around the Web for Wednesday, October 9th

Stanford coach David Shaw wasn't pleased with Washington coach Steve Sarkisian's accusation the Cardinal were faking injuries in last week's game.

Some great news for the College All Star Bowl, as the game has been picked up by CBS Sports Network and will air in February. 

Texas Tech quarterback Baker Mayfield did not suffer any ligament damage in a knee injury against Kansas last week. However, his status for this Saturday's game is uncertain.

Florida State safety Tyler Hunter's season is over after neck surgery.

College Football's Playoff will announce its committee next week. 

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz isn't happy with his punt returns...so he might ban his players from returning punts the rest of the year?

Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon is ready to go against Northwestern after suffering a knee injury against Ohio State.

Saturday Down South takes a look at attendance across the SEC this year.

Utah quarterback Travis Wilson wasn't feeling well prior to last week's game against UCLA.

Duke quarterback Anthony Boone could play (collarbone injury) in Saturday's game against Navy.

Why isn't Oklahoma State's offense running at a faster pace this year?

Some small tweaks to Missouri's offense have helped the Tigers rebound this season.

Two East Carolina receivers are suspended for this week's game against Tulane.

Teaser:
Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 17:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/washington-unveils-new-helmet-game-against-oregon
Body:

Washington takes on Oregon in one of the biggest games of Week 7 this Saturday. The Huskies unveiled a new gold helmet earlier this year and have released a black matte helmet for Saturday's matchup against the Ducks.
 

Teaser:
Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 14:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football, Georgia Bulldogs, SEC
Path: /college-football/injuries-mounting-georgia-still-favorite-sec-east
Body:

Georgia opened the 2013 season with a loss to Clemson, but the Bulldogs have won four in a row, including key SEC matchups against South Carolina and LSU.

Despite Georgia’s winning streak, trouble could be lurking.

Running back Keith Marshall and receivers Justin Scott-Wesley and Malcolm Mitchell are all out for the year due to injury. And receiver Michael Bennett is out indefinitely after suffering a knee injury against Tennessee.

With injuries mounting, the Bulldogs hold on the SEC East is starting to fade.

Georgia has already crossed two huge hurdles with South Carolina and LSU, but Florida, Missouri and Auburn remain.

With Injuries Mounting, Will Georgia Win the SEC East?

Steven Lassan (@AthlonSteven)
I still like Georgia as the favorite in the SEC East. There’s no question the injuries to receiver Michael Bennett, Malcolm Mitchell and Justin Scott-Wesley, along with running back Keith Marshall are going to be difficult to overcome. However, the Bulldogs have one of the nation’s best quarterbacks (Aaron Murray) at their disposal, along with running back Todd Gurley and an experienced offensive line. While Georgia ranks last in the SEC in scoring defense, this unit will only get better with more experience. Games against Missouri, Auburn and Florida represent the biggest challenges for the Bulldogs in the regular season. Even if Georgia loses once, will Florida make it through SEC play with just one defeat or an unbeaten record? And for South Carolina to get back into the division title picture, the Bulldogs have to lose twice. Anything is possible, but even if Georgia loses a game in SEC play, I still think Mark Richt’s team represents the East in Atlanta this season. 

Braden Gall (@BradenGall)
I picked South Carolina to win the East in the summer and Florida to finish second. That put Georgia in third in my preseason ballot. All three were basically considered equal with different areas of strength. However, those areas have shifted after one month of play. Florida's quarterback woes are no more as Tyler Murphy has been excellent, efficient and productive under center. South Carolina's defense isn't nearly as... focused, let's say, as we anticipated, but the offense is better. Aaron Murray has shredded the idea he can't deliver in the clutch against big-time competition but has done so while the rest of his supporting cast crumbles around him. The defense is still young and road games at Vanderbilt, Auburn, Georgia Tech and a neutral site game against Florida still loom. So after one month of play, I will stick with my predicted order of finish from the summer: 1. South Carolina 2. Florida 3. Georgia — but it could easily be a three-way tie with the BCS sending the Gamecocks to Atlanta.


David Fox (@DavidFox615)
Georgia’s hold on the SEC is tenuous for sure. If I had to pick again today, I’d go with South Carolina or Florida in the East. That’s as much because of Georgia’s new rash of injuries along with a few revelations in the division. We’ll find out Saturday if Tyler Murphy is a long-awaited answer at quarterback when the Gators visit LSU. The Gators’ defense is good enough to win any league. Meanwhile, South Carolina could have a secret weapon if Jadeveon Clowney ever returns to form. And then there’s Missouri and to a lesser extent Tennessee. The Tigers may not as good as other 5-0 teams, but they may be good enough to sneak up and upset Florida, Georgia or South Carolina. Mizzou doesn’t have to beat all three to upset the whole division.

Mark Ross
I still think Georgia is the favorite, but the Bulldogs' margin of error seems to be shrinking with every passing day. Even though Mark Richt's team did what it needed to do to escape Knoxville with a win last Saturday, it didn't come without a cost. Running back Keith Marshall and wide receiver Justin Scott-Wesley join wideout Malcolm Mitchell as those key players who will miss the rest of the season because of injury. The Bulldogs' offensive skill position depth will certainly be tested, but I think they can survive, provided running back Todd Gurley returns from his ankle injury soon and that it doesn't impact his production the rest of the way.

Georgia will certainly need to bring its "A" game this Saturday against Missouri, but the big contest that looms, of course, is the one with Florida the following weekend. That will be the true test of Georgia's offensive depth, as the Gators have one of the top defenses in the country. The winner of that game will be in the driver's seat to play in Atlanta in December for the SEC championship. The difference in that game may very well come down to quarterback play, and while Florida has had to go to its backup quarterback because of a season-ending injury to Jeff Driskel, Georgia can lean on Aaron Murray. The senior stepped up against Tennessee this past Saturday when his team needed him the most. That just reinforces the fact that, despite the litany of injuries Georgia has suffered, Murray is the one player who must stay healthy if the Bulldogs want to chase their championship dreams. As long as he can avoid the injury bug that's wreaking havoc on the depth chart, I like Georgia's chances to win the East.

Josh Ward, (@Josh_Ward), Mr. SEC
I think Georgia has earned the “team to beat” title with its wins over South Carolina and LSU in the first month of the season. Still, Georgia has major concerns because of the amount of injuries the Bulldogs have suffered. Quarterback Aaron Murray has been terrific this season. Can he keep it up with limited options around him? Georgia has plenty of questions on defense as well. Teams will be able to score on the Bulldogs. Georgia’s schedule is more favorable than what Florida and South Carolina face the rest of the way, but games against Missouri, Florida and Auburn will be tough outs for Georgia. I’ll stick with my preseason prediction that Georgia will win the East. But I don’t feel as strongly about it as I did a week ago.

Related College Football Content

Post-Week 6 Heisman Voting
College Football's Post-Week 6 Bowl Projections
College Football's Post-Week 6 Coaches on the Hot Seat
Inside the Numbers: Baylor's Offense on Record-Setting Pace
The Top 100 College Football Players of the BCS Era

Teaser:
Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: Baylor Bears, coach, College Football
Path: /college-football/top-10-college-football-coaches-will-be-demand-2013
Body:

With three college football coaches fired by early October, the timetable for picking a new coach this year is already shrinking.

Whenever an athletic director decides to make a change, they usually aren’t making the decision without much background or information on the potential replacements. Most football administrations likely know if a coach is interested in a particular job before making a change.

With coaching moves already happening and more likely to come in the next few weeks, it’s time to take a look at the coaches that will be in demand in December.

Baylor’s Art Briles, Boise State’s Chris Petersen and TCU’s Gary Patterson are always discussed when any high-level BCS job opens. But will they actually leave this offseason? That’s the million-dollar question.

Assuming no program can hire one of those three coaches, the focus in coaching searches will likely turn to Fresno State’s Tim DeRuyter, Vanderbilt’s James Franklin, Ball State’s Pete Lembo or Ohio State’s Tom Herman.

Here’s a look at 10 names who will be targeted in coaching searches this offseason, along with a few coordinators from BCS programs and head coaches on the rise.
 

Head Coaches…Always in Demand

These three coaches will be discussed with seemingly every big BCS vacancy this offseason. But will any of them actually leave their current school?

Art Briles, Baylor
Prior to his arrival at Baylor, the Bears struggled just to escape the cellar of the Big 12 South. From 1997-2007, Baylor went 31-94 with no bowl appearances and lost at least eight games in 10 out of those 11 seasons. In six years under Briles, Baylor has been molded into a top-25 program with three consecutive bowl appearances. Baylor won 10 games in 2011, which was the school’s first double-digit win total since 1980. Briles has spent his entire coaching and playing career in the state of Texas, spending time in the high school ranks as an assistant at Sundown High School in 1979, followed by a stop at Sweetwater (1980-84), before serving as a head coach at Hamlin (1984-86), Georgetown (1986-88) and Stephenville (1988-99). Briles worked as an assistant at Texas Tech from 2000-03 and was hired as Houston’s head coach in '03. Briles is also regarded as an outstanding offensive coach and has done a good job of identifying and developing talent at Baylor. With his background in Texas, Briles would be a good fit to replace Mack Brown. However, with a new stadium opening at Baylor next season, it’s hard to see the Texas native taking over in Austin.

Gary Patterson, TCU
Patterson has been instrumental in TCU’s rise to Big 12 membership, and the Kansas native is one of the top defensive minds in college football. Patterson worked under Dennis Franchione at Texas State and New Mexico and was promoted to the top spot at TCU in 2000. Under his direction, the Horned Frogs are 118-39, which includes an undefeated season in 2010 and a Rose Bowl victory over Wisconsin. Patterson will be tough to pry away from TCU – if at all – but programs like Texas or USC will certainly try.

Chris Petersen, Boise State
It seems Petersen’s name is connected every time a high-level BCS job is open. However, the California native hasn’t been tempted to leave Boise State. And who can blame him? The Broncos are 87-10 under his watch, recorded four top-10 finishes in the Associated Press poll and have played in two BCS games. There’s pressure to win at Boise State, but nothing like the pressure of taking over a program like USC or Texas. It may be tough for the Broncos to replicate the 38-2 mark it accumulated from 2008-10, but Petersen should still have this program in the mix for a spot among the top 25 teams in the nation every year. 

The Next 10

Dave Clawson, head coach, Bowling Green
Clawson gets a bad rap for his one season as Tennessee’s offensive coordinator, but the New York native has been a successful head coach at three different stops. After starting 3-19 at Fordham, Clawson recorded three consecutive winning seasons and led the Rams to a playoff berth in 2002. Clawson was 29-20 in four seasons at Richmond and is 27-29 with two bowl appearances at Bowling Green. While Clawson has a background on offense, it was his defense that led the MAC in fewest yards allowed last season and ranks No. 1 after six games in 2013. 

Tim DeRuyter, head coach, Fresno State
Pat Hill had a solid stint at Fresno State, but the program seemed to grow stale at the end of his tenure. DeRuyter inherited good talent and has elevated the Bulldogs into BCS bowl contention this year. Fresno State went 9-4 in DeRuyter’s first season and is off to a 5-0 start this season. Prior to taking over at Fresno State, DeRuyter made stops as an assistant at Ohio, Navy, Nevada, Air Force and Texas A&M. Could the California native replace Lane Kiffin at USC?

James Franklin, head coach, Vanderbilt
Vanderbilt is one of the toughest BCS jobs in the nation. From 1983-2008, the Commodores had only one winning year and just four bowl trips in the school’s history prior to Frankin’s arrival. However, under Franklin, Vanderbilt has back-to-back bowl appearances and went 9-4 last season – the best record by the Commodores since 1982. Franklin also has a wealth of experience as an assistant from stops at James Madison, Washington State, Maryland, Kansas State and in the NFL with the Packers. The Pennsylvania native is regarded as an excellent recruiter, and his background on offense will be attractive for programs looking for a jumpstart on that side of the ball. Franklin has to be near the top of Pat Haden’s list at USC, but his name will likely come up in connection with several jobs. 

Tom Herman, offensive coordinator, Ohio State
Herman is a genius. Literally. The Ohio native is a member of MENSA – the national high-IQ society – and directs one of the top offenses in college football. The Buckeyes led the Big Ten in scoring offense last season, averaging 37.2 points a game. In 2013, Ohio State has been even better, averaging 46.8 points per contest and averaging 492.8 yards per game. Prior to joining coach Urban Meyer’s staff at Ohio State, Herman worked as an assistant at Sam Houston State and was the offensive coordinator at Texas State, Rice and Iowa State. In 2008, the Owls averaged 41.3 points a game and ranked fifth nationally in passing offense.

Mark Hudspeth, head coach, UL Lafayette
Hudspeth isn’t short on intensity, and it won’t be long before he’s in charge of a BCS program. The Mississippi native has stops as an assistant at Central Arkansas, Delta State, Navy and Mississippi State, along with a successful run as North Alabama’s head coach from 2002-08. Under his watch, the Lions went 66-21 and made five playoff appearances. Hudspeth inherited a program that went 3-9 in the season prior to his arrival, but the Ragin’ Cajuns are 21-10 under his watch and have back-to-back bowl wins. With his experience in the South, Hudspeth would be a good fit in the SEC. However, will there be a job vacancy this offseason in college football’s premier conference?

Pete Lembo, head coach, Ball State
It was somewhat of a surprise Lembo didn’t receive much attention for open jobs last offseason, but that should change this year. Lembo has been successful at three different stops. From 2001-05, Lembo went 44-14 at Lehigh and led the Mountain Hawks to two playoff appearances. Lembo moved on to Elon in 2006 and stayed there until 2010, recording a 35-22 mark. In three seasons at Ball State, Lembo is 20-11 and has four wins over BCS teams, including an impressive 48-27 victory at Virginia last Saturday. Lembo is due for a promotion in the near future, and programs like Connecticut would be wise to inquire about his interest. However, would Lembo hold out for a job in the ACC or Big Ten?

Chad Morris, offensive coordinator, Clemson
Morris has no head coaching experience on his resume, but he will generate plenty of interest from athletic directors this offseason. The Texas native worked as a high school head coach from 1994-2009, including a successful 32-0 stint at Lake Travis from 2008-09. Morris was hired to replace Gus Malzahn as Tulsa’s offensive coordinator in 2010, and the Golden Hurricane averaged 505.6 yards per game under his watch. His work at Tulsa caught the attention of Clemson coach Dabo Swinney, and after three seasons, it’s clear this hire has worked out well for Clemson. The Tigers have increased their yards and points per game average in each of Morris’ three years in Death Valley and set a single-season record with 533 points in 2012. There’s no question Morris knows offense, and it’s only a matter of time before he has a chance to run his own program.

Pat Narduzzi, defensive coordinator, Michigan State
Narduzzi’s name has already circulated for the Connecticut job, but the 47-year-old coach could be coveted by any open BCS vacancy this offseason. Narduzzi started his coaching career in 1990 as a graduate assistant at Miami (Ohio) and made stops as an assistant at Rhode Island and Northern Illinois, before taking over as a defensive coordinator with the RedHawks in 2003. Narduzzi left Miami (Ohio) to be the defensive coordinator at Cincinnati in 2004 and followed coach Mark Dantonio to Michigan State in 2007. Under Narduzzi’s watch, the Spartans ranked in the top 10 nationally in total and scoring defense in 2011-12 and led the nation in total defense in 2013. Narduzzi doesn’t have head coaching experience, but he’s one of the best defensive coordinators in college football.

Kirby Smart, defensive coordinator, Alabama
Nick Saban plays a large role in shaping Alabama’s defense, but Smart is still held in high regard among coaching circles and will be the next Saban assistant to take a head coach job. Smart is well-versed in life in the SEC, as he played defensive back at Georgia and worked at LSU, Georgia and now Alabama as an assistant. The Alabama native also spent one season with the Dolphins in 2006. In five seasons calling the defensive signals for the Crimson Tide, Smart’s defenses have never ranked outside of the top 10 in scoring and total defense. Considering Alabama is loaded with talent for the next few years, Smart’s defense will continue to be ranked among the nation’s elite, and he can be selective in choosing his first head coaching gig.

Justin Wilcox, defensive coordinator, Washington
In just two seasons, Wilcox has transformed Washington’s defense from one of the worst to one of the best in the Pac-12. The former Oregon defensive back started his coaching career at Boise State in 2001 as a graduate assistant and after a three-year stint at California, he returned to coordinate the Broncos’ defense in 2006. Wilcox directed Tennessee’s defense under Derek Dooley from 2010-11 and returned to the Pacific Northwest in 2012. Washington ranked 106th nationally in total defense and allowed 35.9 points a game in the year prior to Wilcox’s arrival, but the Huskies finished 31st nationally in yards allowed in 2012 and held opponents to just 24.2 points a game. And after five games in 2013, Washington leads the Pac-12 in total defense. Wilcox is only 36, but he’s ready for a chance to be a head coach. Could he be a possible replacement in Boise if Chris Petersen decides to leave?

Other Coordinators to Watch

Mike Bobo, offensive coordinator, Georgia
Opinions on Bobo seemed to be mixed from around the SEC, but the former Georgia quarterback has coordinated some very successful offenses. The Bulldogs have ranked in the top 40 of total offense in three out of the last five seasons and are averaging 530 yards per game in 2013. Bobo may need to take a non-BCS head coach job first, but he’s been a solid coordinator and deserves a promotion to run his own program. 

Bob Diaco, defensive coordinator, Notre Dame
Diaco played under Hayden Fry at Iowa and has quickly ascended the coaching ranks. He made stops as an assistant at Western Illinois, Eastern Michigan, Western Michigan, Central Michigan and Virginia, before taking the Cincinnati defensive coordinator position in 2009. Diaco followed Brian Kelly to Notre Dame in 2010, and from 2010-12, the Fighting Irish improved their total defense numbers, including a No. 7 finish nationally last season. Diaco does not have any prior head coaching experience.

D.J. Durkin, defensive coordinator, Florida
Durkin was promoted to defensive coordinator after Dan Quinn left for the NFL after the 2012 season. The Ohio native is highly regarded among coaches in the SEC and has spent time at Bowling Green, Florida, Notre Dame and Stanford as an assistant. Durkin has learned from some of the best coaches in college football during the BCS era, working under Urban Meyer at Bowling Green and Jim Harbaugh at Stanford.

Scott Frost, offensive coordinator, Oregon
Frost is this year’s Kliff Kingsbury. The 38-year-old Nebraska native is piloting one of the nation’s top offensive attacks and will eventually be a head coach. Frost went 24-2 in his two years as Nebraska’s starting quarterback from 1995-97 and had a short career in the NFL as a safety. Frost started his coaching career at Kansas State in 2006 and was hired as an assistant at Northern Iowa in 2007. He worked with the Panthers for two seasons, including a stint as the team’s defensive coordinator in 2008. Frost was hired by Chip Kelly at Oregon in 2009 and worked as the team’s wide receivers coach until Kelly left for the NFL. So far, Oregon’s offense hasn’t missed a beat under Frost’s direction, averaging 630.4 yards and 59.2 points a game.

Brian Lindgren, offensive coordinator, Colorado
Looking for the next rising star in the offensive coordinator ranks? Look no further than Boulder, Colo. Lindgren is a former Idaho quarterback who started his coaching career at Redlands in 2005. He left for Northern Arizona in 2006 and stayed with the Lumberjacks until 2011, serving as the offensive coordinator from 2009-11. Under Lindgren’s watch, Northern Arizona finished 5th, 42nd and 14th nationally in total offense. Lindgren was hired by Mike MacIntyre as the offensive coordinator at San Jose State in 2012, and the Spartans finished sixth nationally in passing and averaged 34.8 points per game. In four games this season, Colorado is averaging 402 yards per game in 2013, which is a 100-yard improvement from '12.

Seth Littrell, offensive coordinator, Indiana
Littrell is another Mike Leach disciple. He played under Leach at Oklahoma and joined Texas Tech’s staff in 2005 as a running backs coach. Littrell worked at Arizona under Mike Stoops from 2009-11, spending the last two seasons as the offensive coordinator. The Wildcats ranked ninth nationally in passing offense in 2010 and improved to No. 3 nationally in '11. In one season with the Hoosiers – and having to use three different quarterbacks – Littrell guided the offense to a No. 33 finish nationally and averaged 30.8 points a game.

Derek Mason, defensive coordinator, Stanford
Mason is the architect behind one of the nation’s best defenses. The Arizona native was promoted to defensive coordinator in 2011, and the Cardinal finished second in the Pac-12 in total defense that season, followed by a No. 1 finish in 2012. Mason has never been a head coach and has worked as an assistant on both sides of the ball, including a stop as a wide receivers coach at Utah in 2002.  

Philip Montgomery, offensive coordinator, Baylor
Montgomery doesn’t get enough national credit for his work as Baylor’s offensive coordinator. The Texas native has worked under coach Art Briles since 2003, and both have been critical in developing the Bears’ offense into one of the best in the nation. Montgomery calls the plays for Baylor, guiding the Bears to an average of 572.2 yards per game in 2012 and a whopping 779.5 yards per game this season. Baylor also set or tied or set 101 school records in 2011, with quarterback Robert Griffin III winning the Heisman Trophy.

Mike Norvell, offensive coordinator, Arizona State
Looking for the next Chad Morris? Look no further than Tempe, Ariz. Norvell is only 31 and coordinates one of the Pac-12’s top offenses at Arizona State. The Sun Devils averaged 38.4 points a game last season and are tied for 16th nationally after five games this year, averaging 42.2 points a contest. Prior to Arizona State, Norvell worked for Arizona State coach Todd Graham at Tulsa and with Pittsburgh in 2011. Norvell isn’t in any hurry to leave Tempe, but he should get a chance to be a head coach in the next few years.  

Doug Nussmeier, offensive coordinator, Alabama
Nick Saban is known for his defenses, but his assistant tree has produced a couple of head coaches from the offensive side. Jimbo Fisher and Jim McElwain are the most recent head coach hires, and Nussmeier could be next. The former Idaho quarterback has stops as an assistant in the CFL and in the NFL, before coordinating offenses at Fresno State, Washington and Alabama. In Nussmeier’s first season as the Crimson Tide’s play-caller in 2012, Alabama averaged 35.7 points a game and ranked second in the SEC in rushing offense.

Brent Venables, defensive coordinator, Clemson
Venables played under Bill Snyder and coached under Bob Stoops at Oklahoma – it doesn’t get any better than that when it comes to experience. The Kansas native left Oklahoma for Clemson after Mike Stoops returned to Norman to call plays in 2011. The move has paid dividends for the Tigers, as their defense showed improvement at the end of 2012 and is holding opponents to 16.6 points a game this fall.

Three More Head Coaches on the Rise

Matt Campbell, Toledo
Campbell is one of college football’s youngest head coaches and played at ultra-successful Mount Union College. The Ohio native spent time as an assistant at Mount Union, Bowling Green and Toledo, and was promoted to  the Rockets' head coach after Tim Beckman left for Illinois. Campbell led Toledo to a bowl win over Air Force in 2011 and is 12-7 in his first two full seasons.

Curtis Johnson, Tulane
Johnson had no assistant or head coaching experience prior to taking over at Tulane. But after 18 career games, Johnson clearly has the Green Wave on the right track. Tulane finished 2-10 in 2012, but the Green Wave are 4-2 and should make their first bowl game since 2002 this year.

Justin Fuente, Memphis
After a horrible two-year stint under Larry Porter, Memphis made the right move to hire Fuente. In the three years prior to Fuente’s arrival, the Tigers went 5-31. However, Fuente went 4-8 last season, which included a three-game winning streak to close out the season. Memphis is 1-3 this year, with losses by seven points to a solid UCF team, along with a two-point defeat to MTSU and a 28-14 loss against Duke. It’s clear Fuente has Memphis moving in the right direction. And it won’t be long before athletic directors around the country start to take notice. 

Non-BCS Coordinators Poised for a Promotion

Mike Elko, defensive coordinator, Bowling Green
The MAC is home to a handful of explosive offenses, but Bowling Green has been winning with defense. The Falcons led the MAC in total, scoring, rush and pass defense last season and rank No. 1 after six games in 2013. Elko’s defense held opponents to just 296.6 yards per game last season and generated 2.9 sacks a game in 2012.

Lincoln Riley, offensive coordinator, East Carolina
Riley is a Mike Leach disciple, spending 2003-09 in Lubbock with the Red Raiders, then followed Ruffin McNeill to East Carolina in 2010. Under his direction, the Pirates averaged 414.3 yards and 31.6 points per game from 2010-12 and rank second in Conference USA in scoring offense this season.

Nick Rolovich, offensive coordinator, Nevada
Rolovich has an interesting background of offensive styles in his coaching career, as he worked at Hawaii with the Run and Shoot offense under Greg McMackin from 2008-11 and joined Nevada’s staff in '12, picking up the Pistol offense from Chris Ault. Rolovich briefly left for Temple last offseason but decided to remain in Reno. Under his direction, Nevada led the Mountain West in total offense last year and is averaging 435.2 yards per game in 2013.

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Post-Week 6 Heisman Voting
College Football's Post-Week 6 Bowl Projections
College Football's Post-Week 6 Coaches on the Hot Seat
Inside the Numbers: Baylor's Offense on Record-Setting Pace

Teaser:
Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football, Georgia Bulldogs, SEC, News
Path: /college-football/mounting-injuries-georgia-bulldogs-still-favorite-sec-east-2013
Body:

Georgia opened the 2013 season with a loss to Clemson, but the Bulldogs have won four in a row, including key SEC matchups against South Carolina and LSU.

Despite Georgia’s winning streak, trouble could be lurking.

Running back Keith Marshall and receivers Justin Scott-Wesley and Malcolm Mitchell are all out for the year due to injury. And receiver Michael Bennett is out indefinitely after suffering a knee injury against Tennessee.

With injuries mounting, the Bulldogs hold on the SEC East is starting to fade.

Georgia has already crossed two huge hurdles with South Carolina and LSU, but Florida, Missouri and Auburn remain.

With Injuries Mounting, Will Georgia Win the SEC East?

Steven Lassan (@AthlonSteven)
I still like Georgia as the favorite in the SEC East. There’s no question the injuries to receiver Michael Bennett, Malcolm Mitchell and Justin Scott-Wesley, along with running back Keith Marshall are going to be difficult to overcome. However, the Bulldogs have one of the nation’s best quarterbacks (Aaron Murray) at their disposal, along with running back Todd Gurley and an experienced offensive line. While Georgia ranks last in the SEC in scoring defense, this unit will only get better with more experience. Games against Missouri, Auburn and Florida represent the biggest challenges for the Bulldogs in the regular season. Even if Georgia loses once, will Florida make it through SEC play with just one defeat or an unbeaten record? And for South Carolina to get back into the division title picture, the Bulldogs have to lose twice. Anything is possible, but even if Georgia loses a game in SEC play, I still think Mark Richt’s team represents the East in Atlanta this season. 

Braden Gall (@BradenGall)
I picked South Carolina to win the East in the summer and Florida to finish second. That put Georgia in third in my preseason ballot. All three were basically considered equal with different areas of strength. However, those areas have shifted after one month of play. Florida's quarterback woes are no more as Tyler Murphy has been excellent, efficient and productive under center. South Carolina's defense isn't nearly as... focused, let's say, as we anticipated, but the offense is better. Aaron Murray has shredded the idea he can't deliver in the clutch against big-time competition but has done so while the rest of his supporting cast crumbles around him. The defense is still young and road games at Vanderbilt, Auburn, Georgia Tech and a neutral site game against Florida still loom. So after one month of play, I will stick with my predicted order of finish from the summer: 1. South Carolina 2. Florida 3. Georgia — but it could easily be a three-way tie with the BCS sending the Gamecocks to Atlanta.


David Fox (@DavidFox615)
Georgia’s hold on the SEC is tenuous for sure. If I had to pick again today, I’d go with South Carolina or Florida in the East. That’s as much because of Georgia’s new rash of injuries along with a few revelations in the division. We’ll find out Saturday if Tyler Murphy is a long-awaited answer at quarterback when the Gators visit LSU. The Gators’ defense is good enough to win any league. Meanwhile, South Carolina could have a secret weapon if Jadeveon Clowney ever returns to form. And then there’s Missouri and to a lesser extent Tennessee. The Tigers may not as good as other 5-0 teams, but they may be good enough to sneak up and upset Florida, Georgia or South Carolina. Mizzou doesn’t have to beat all three to upset the whole division.

Mark Ross
I still think Georgia is the favorite, but the Bulldogs' margin of error seems to be shrinking with every passing day. Even though Mark Richt's team did what it needed to do to escape Knoxville with a win last Saturday, it didn't come without a cost. Running back Keith Marshall and wide receiver Justin Scott-Wesley join wideout Malcolm Mitchell as those key players who will miss the rest of the season because of injury. The Bulldogs' offensive skill position depth will certainly be tested, but I think they can survive, provided running back Todd Gurley returns from his ankle injury soon and that it doesn't impact his production the rest of the way.

Georgia will certainly need to bring its "A" game this Saturday against Missouri, but the big contest that looms, of course, is the one with Florida the following weekend. That will be the true test of Georgia's offensive depth, as the Gators have one of the top defenses in the country. The winner of that game will be in the driver's seat to play in Atlanta in December for the SEC championship. The difference in that game may very well come down to quarterback play, and while Florida has had to go to its backup quarterback because of a season-ending injury to Jeff Driskel, Georgia can lean on Aaron Murray. The senior stepped up against Tennessee this past Saturday when his team needed him the most. That just reinforces the fact that, despite the litany of injuries Georgia has suffered, Murray is the one player who must stay healthy if the Bulldogs want to chase their championship dreams. As long as he can avoid the injury bug that's wreaking havoc on the depth chart, I like Georgia's chances to win the East.

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Post-Week 6 Heisman Voting
College Football's Post-Week 6 Bowl Projections
College Football's Post-Week 6 Coaches on the Hot Seat

Teaser:
With Injuries Mounting, is Georgia Still the Favorite in the SEC East?
Post date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 07:16
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/college-footballs-link-roundup-october-8
Body:

Almost at the halfway point of the 2013 season.

Contact us on twitter with a link or a tip we should include each day. (@AthlonSteven)

College Football's Must-Read Stories Around the Web for Tuesday, October 8th

Lost Lettermen takes a look at the top-10 coaching confrontations since 2000.

Tired of bowl games? Get ready, there are four new ones coming to college football in 2014.

Here's an odd story: Fake representatives of USC are reaching out to coaching candidates.

Auburn defensive tackle Jeff Whitaker will take a redshirt season.

UCLA lost tackle Torian White for the rest of the year with an ankle injury suffered against Utah.

Minnesota's president has renewed his support for coach Jerry Kill.

What has happened to Texas' athletic department?

Is Jadeveon Clowney tanking for the NFL Draft?

Virginia coach Mike London received the vote of confidence from his athletic director this week.

Why isn't Florida running back Kelvin Taylor playing this year?

Utah tight end Jake Murphy suffered a broken wrist against UCLA.

Should California fire defensive coordinator Andy Buh?

Texas A&M defensive tackle Kirby Ennis will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury.

Oklahoma linebacker Corey Nelson will miss the rest of the season with a torn pectoral muscle.

Who replaces quarterback Chuckie Keeton at Utah State?

 

Teaser:
Post date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 16:00
Path: /college-football/after-1-4-start-can-north-carolina-make-bowl-2013
Body:

North Carolina entered 2013 with high expectations. The Tar Heels finished 8-4 with NCAA sanctions preventing this team from playing in a bowl game last season and was picked by some to win the Coastal Division.

However, North Carolina has been one of the biggest disappointments in the ACC so far, starting the season with a 1-4 record.

The Tar Heels lost on the road to South Carolina, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech and at home to East Carolina.

Although none of those losses are particularly bad, a 1-4 start isn’t what most envisioned for this team.

Both sides of the ball share blame for North Carolina, but the schedule will get easier.

After a 1-4 Start, Will North Carolina Make a Bowl in 2013?

Steven Lassan (@AthlonSteven)
The Tar Heels are off to a disappointing start, but let’s not forget this team has played three challenging road tests – South Carolina, Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. With three new starters, the offensive line was a huge question mark going into the season, and so far, those concerns haven’t been answered. But all is not lost for North Carolina, as the schedule will lighten in the second half of the season. The Tar Heels have two weeks to prepare for Miami, which should allow quarterback Bryn Renner to get healthy after missing last Saturday’s game against Virginia Tech with an ankle injury. After playing the Hurricanes, coach Larry Fedora’s team has home games against Boston College, Virginia, Old Dominion and Duke, with road games against Pittsburgh and NC State. With four winnable home games, North Carolina just needs to win one out of the remaining trio, and NC State and Pittsburgh are winnable on the road. The Tar Heels may finish the regular season at 6-6, but I think Fedora gets this team to a bowl.

Mark Ross
As a North Carolina fan, it hurts me that we even have to have this discussion, but the proof is in the pudding and right now the Tar Heels have a lot of lumps to smooth out. The offense hasn't been anywhere near as explosive or productive as it was last season and the defense has been far too generous. While the loss to East Carolina two games ago was tough to watch, I think there's light at the end of the tunnel for Larry Fedora's team. Following next Thursday's game against Miami, Carolina's schedule becomes a lot more manageable. The Tar Heels have just two road games (NC State and Pitt) the rest of the way and still have a date with Old Dominion left. Boston College, Virginia and Duke have yet to win an ACC game of their own and, like North Carolina, are teams with obvious flaws. Outside of Miami, I believe that North Carolina can win its remaining home games. Bowl eligibility would then come down to beating either NC State or Pitt on the road, and the optimist in me says that the Heels find a way to get it done. In that case, a 5-2 finish to the season would be pretty impressive considering how poorly this team has looked in the early going.

Coach Fisher DeBerry, former head coach of Air Force and current voting member of the Legends Poll:
I think North Carolina will have a great chance to make a bowl game this year, even though they are only 1-4. North Carolina's head coach, Larry Fedora, was on my staff and he coaches with great passion.  They will be getting some players back from injuries, which has been a problem for them so far. Larry will have them competitive in every game left on their schedule. I would not count them out by any means. 

David Fox (@DavidFox615)
The silver lining for North Carolina at least is that after Miami on Oct. 17, the toughest portion of the schedule is over. Teams like Boston College, Virginia and Duke heaven’t played that much better than the Tar Heels, and Old Dominion is transitioning to the FBS level. Even if we’re generous and give North Carolina wins in all of those games, that still gets them to only five wins. Carolina would need to defeat Miami at home or Pittsburgh or NC State on the road. That’s not going to happen. Clearly, we underestimated how important first-round draft pick Jonathan Cooper was to the run game, not to mention Giovani Bernard. Carolina is averaging just 2.9 yards per carry this season compared to better than five yards per carry last season. Throw in a banged up Bryn Renner, and North Carolina doesn’t have enough offense to get to six wins.


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ACC Week 6 Awards and Recap
National Awards from Week 6

Teaser:
Post date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/college-footballs-coach-hot-seat-rankings-post-week-6-edition
Body:

The coaching carousel in college football continued to spin this week, as Miami (Ohio) coach Don Treadwell was fired after Saturday’s loss to Central Michigan. Mike Bath – a former Miami (Ohio) quarterback – will replace Treadwell for the rest of the season.

Treadwell is the third coach fired this season, joining USC’s Lane Kiffin and Connecticut’s Paul Pasqualoni.

Could we see more firings in the next few weeks? It’s possible.

Texas survived Iowa State’s upset bid on Thursday night, but the Longhorns now have to play Oklahoma. The Sooners have dominated the Longhorns in the last two matchups, and another blowout would be bad news for Mack Brown.

Eastern Michigan is one of the toughest jobs in the nation, but coach Ron English has struggled to improve the program. The Eagles are 1-4, with their only winning coming against FCS opponent Howard.

Other coaches moving up the hot seat watch include Kansas’ Charlie Weis, West Virginia’s Dana Holgorsen and Virginia’s Mike London.

Each week, we will take a look at the hot seat/pressure on a program for all 125 coaches. Some new coaches will rank high due to poor performances but aren't in any danger of losing their job.

And another important note when reading our coach on the hot seat rankings: Outside of the top 10-15 coaches, it’s all about the pressure on a program. While some coaches – like Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen and Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz – aren’t in any danger of being fired. However, both coaches need to continue to show the program is headed in the right direction.

Ranking All 125 CFB Coaches on Hot Seat/Pressure on Program to Win in 2013

RkCoachTeam2013 RecordAnalysis
1Mack Brown3-2Huge game against OU this Saturday.
2Ron English1-4Tough job, but Eagles not making much progress.
3Dan Enos2-4Chippewas get much-needed victory in Week 6.
4Norm Chow0-5Warriors 0-5 for the first time since 1998.
5Charlie Weis2-2Jayhawks haven't won Big 12 game since 2010.
6Charley Molnar0-5Minutemen have scored only 35 points this year.
7Bo Pelini4-1Tommy Armstrong is a future star for Huskers.
8Bobby Hauck3-2Rebels could be 4-2 after this week.
9Doc Holliday3-2Herd's remaining schedule is very favorable.
10Ron Turner1-4FIU won C-USA debut at USM.
11Jim Grobe3-3Demon Deacons show signs of life on offense.
12Dana Holgorsen3-3WVU simply outmanned against Baylor.
13Skip Holtz2-4Bulldogs get first C-USA win against UTEP.
14Rich Ellerson2-4Army still has a shot to play in a bowl this year.
15Matt Rhule0-5Rough first year for Rhule continues.
16Jeff Quinn3-2Branden Oliver one of nation's most underrated RBs.
17Tim Beckman3-2Illini improved, but bowl seems unrealistic.
18Mike London2-3Got vote of confidence from AD.
19Todd Monken0-5USM could be staring at another 0-12 season.
20P.J. Fleck0-6Broncos still searching for Fleck's first win.
21Kirk Ferentz4-2Hawkeyes improved, but bowl could be out of reach.
22Carl Pelini2-4 
23June Jones1-4 
24Dan Mullen2-3Hung tough against LSU for a half.
25Sean Kugler1-4Miners off to disappointing 1-4 start.
26Garrick McGee1-4Blazers change defensive coordinators after FAU loss.
27Tony Levine4-0 
28Randy Edsall4-1 
29Rick Stockstill3-3 
30Joey Jones2-3 
31Terry Bowden1-5 
32Gary Pinkel5-0Remember when Pinkel was on the hot seat?
33Rocky Long2-3 
34Bill Blankenship1-4 
35Dan McCarney2-3 
36Dave Christensen3-2 
37George O'Leary4-1UCF survives Memphis' upset bid.
38David Bailiff3-2 
39Scott Shafer2-3Syracuse handled by Clemson in ACC opener.
40Bobby Petrino4-2 
41Tommy Tuberville3-2 
42Kevin Wilson3-2Hoosiers pickup first win over Penn State.
43Jim McElwain2-3 
44Larry Fedora1-4 
45Bob Davie2-3 
46Ron Caragher2-3 
47Kyle Flood4-1 
48Larry Blakeney3-3 
49Kyle Whittingham3-2 
50Brian Polian3-3 
51Darrell Hazell1-4 
52Troy Calhoun1-5 
53Paul Haynes2-4 
54Doug Martin0-6 
55Frank Beamer5-1Hokies back in Coastal Division contention.
56Paul Chryst3-1 
57Rod Carey5-0 
58Willie Taggart1-4Taggart's bus is starting to move again.
59Curtis Johnson4-2Green Wave quietly off to 4-2 start.
60Ruffin McNeill4-1ECU looking like the favorite in C-USA.
61Bryan Harsin2-3 
62Mike Leach4-2Cougars have surpassed 2012 win total.
63Mike Riley4-1 
64Dave Clawson5-1 
65Steve Sarkisian4-1Huskies closing the gap in Pac-12 North.
66Mark Helfrich5-0Ducks have scored 50 points in every game this year.
67Dennis Franchoine3-2 
68Matt Wells3-3Chuckie Keeton will be tough to replace.
69Paul Petrino1-5 
70Mark Dantonio4-1Maybe Connor Cook is the answer at QB?
71Brady Hoke5-0 
72Bronco Mendenhall3-2 
73Trent Miles0-5 
74Frank Solich4-1 
75Butch Jones3-3 
76Mark Richt4-1 
77Paul Johnson3-2 
78Jerry Kill4-2 
79Mark Stoops1-4 
80Dave Doeren3-2
81Dabo Swinney5-0
82Ken Niumatalolo3-1
83Jimbo Fisher5-0
84Bob Stoops5-0
85Matt Campbell3-3
86Bret Bielema3-3
87Al Golden5-0
88Justin Fuente1-3
89Brian Kelly3-2
90Gus Malzahn4-1
91Todd Berry2-4
92Steve Addazio3-2
93Sonny Dykes1-4
94Rich Rodriguez3-1
95Todd Graham3-2
96Jim Mora4-0 
97Will Muschamp5-1 
98Mike MacIntyre2-2 
99Paul Rhoads1-3 
100Larry Coker2-4 
101David Cutcliffe3-2 
102Tim DeRuyter5-0DeRuyter will be a popular name this offseason.
103Les Miles5-1 
104James Franklin3-3 
105Gary Andersen3-2 
106Mike Gundy4-1 
107Hugh Freeze4-1 
108Pete Lembo5-1 
109Mark Hudspeth3-2 
110Bill O'Brien3-2 
111Kevin Sumlin4-1 
112Gary Patterson2-3
113Bill Snyder2-3
114Kliff Kingsbury5-0
115Chris Petersen3-2
116Charlie Strong5-0
117Steve Spurrier4-1
118Art Briles4-0
119Pat Fitzgerald4-1
120David Shaw4-0
121Urban Meyer6-0
122Nick Saban5-0
NREd Orgeron0-0
NRT.J. Weist0-0
NRMike Bath0-0

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ACC Post-Week 6 Power Rankings
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Pac-12 Post-Week 6 Power Rankings
SEC Post-Week 6 Power Rankings
Stats to Know from Week 6

Teaser:
Post date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football, Indiana Hoosiers
Path: /college-football/college-footballs-post-week-6-bowl-projections
Body:

Indiana hasn’t played in bowl since 2007, but thanks to Saturday’s win over Penn State, third-year coach Kevin Wilson should have the Hoosiers back in the postseason in 2013.

Indiana’s schedule is by no means easy in the second half of the season. However, games against Minnesota, Illinois and Purdue should allow the Hoosiers to get to the six-win mark.

Another team on the move in the bowl projections is Auburn. The Tigers knocked off Ole Miss in Week 6, improving to 4-1 in coach Gus Malzahn’s first year. Auburn still has to play Texas A&M, Georgia and Alabama, but the Tigers have a chance to finish 8-4. In this week’s projections, Athlon has Auburn playing in the Gator Bowl against Michigan State. 

College football's bowl season is still a few months away, but it's never too early to take a look at what the matchups might look like. With six weeks of results in the books, it's still hard to make long-term projections about teams, especially with several teams still playing overmatched non-conference games. But with conference play right around the corner, we should be able to get a better grasp on what teams will be able to reach the six-win mark.

With little data to work with, the post-Week 6 bowl projections are a mixture between preseason projections, how things would look if the season ended today, and a small dose of the results so far this year. Expect more changes over the next few weeks, especially as we see how teams perform in conference games.

A few teams barely missed the projections this week, including Boston College, West Virginia, Mississippi State, Utah, Arkansas, Minnesota and Illinois from BCS conferences. And Texas State, Arkansas State, Buffalo and Toledo from the non-BCS ranks.

As the season progresses, it will be easier to project which teams will get to the six-win mark or finish below.

College Football's Post-Week 6 Bowl Projections for 2013

BowlTie-InDateProjection
New MexicoDec. 21Pac-12 vs. MWCUSC vs. Wyoming
Famous Idaho PotatoDec. 21MAC vs. MWCBGSU vs. Nevada
Las VegasDec. 21Pac-12 vs. MWCArizona vs. Fresno State
New OrleansDec. 21Sun Belt vs. CUSAUL Lafayette vs. Tulane
Beef 'O' Brady'sDec. 23American vs. CUSAOhio* vs. Tulsa
HawaiiDec. 24MWC vs. CUSASJSU vs. MTSU
Little Caesars PizzaDec. 26MAC vs. Big TenNo. Illinois vs. Indiana
PoinsettiaDec. 26Army vs. MWCNotre Dame* vs. Boise State
MilitaryDec. 27CUSA vs. ACCMarshall vs. N. Carolina
TexasDec. 27Big 12 vs. Big TenTCU vs. Iowa
Kraft Fight HungerDec. 27BYU vs. Pac-12BYU vs. Oregon State
PinstripeDec. 28American vs. Big 12Cincinnati vs. K-State
BelkDec. 28American vs. ACCRutgers vs. NC State
Russell AthleticDec. 28American vs. ACCUCF vs. Virginia Tech
Buffalo Wild WingsDec. 28Big 12 vs. Big TenTexas vs. Nebraska
Armed ForcesDec. 30MWC vs. NavyUtah State vs. Navy
Music CityDec. 30ACC vs. SECPittsburgh vs. Missouri
AlamoDec. 30Big 12 vs. Pac-12Okla. State vs. UCLA
HolidayDec. 30Pac-12 vs. Big 12Washington vs. Texas Tech
AdvoCare V100Dec. 31ACC vs. SECGa. Tech vs. Tennessee
SunDec. 31Pac-12 vs. ACCArizona State vs. Maryland
LibertyDec. 31SEC vs. CUSAOle Miss vs. East Carolina
Chick-fil-ADec. 31SEC vs. ACCMiami vs. So. Carolina
GatorJan. 1SEC vs. Big TenAuburn vs. Mich. State
Heart of DallasJan. 1Big Ten vs. CUSARice vs. Wash. State*
OutbackJan. 1SEC vs. Big TenN'Western vs. Florida
Capital OneJan. 1SEC vs. Big TenWisconsin vs. Texas A&M
RoseJan. 1BCS vs. BCSOregon vs. Michigan
FiestaJan. 1BCS vs. BCSStanford vs. Oklahoma
SugarJan. 2BCS vs. BCSGeorgia vs. Florida State
CottonJan. 3SEC vs. Big 12LSU vs. Baylor
OrangeJan. 3BCS vs. BCSClemson vs. Louisville
BBVA CompassJan. 4SEC vs. AmericanVanderbilt vs. Houston
GoDaddyJan. 5MAC vs. Sun BeltBall State vs. WKU
National TitleJan. 6BCS vs. BCSAlabama vs. Ohio State

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Teaser:
Post date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/acc-post-week-6-power-rankings-2013
Body:

The pecking order in the ACC is clear after six weeks.

Clemson, Florida State, Miami and Virginia Tech appear to have separated themselves from the pack, with Georgia Tech and Maryland just behind.

But after the top six teams?

Pittsburgh seems to be a clear No. 7, but 8-14 is a mess.

Boston College is improving under new coach Steve Addazio and checks in at No. 8 in the power rankings this week.

NC State surprisingly lost to Wake Forest in Week 6, but the Wolfpack looked like the better team prior to Saturday’s defeat.

And North Carolina, Virginia and Syracuse all suffered losses in Week 6.

Get ready, the next two months should be an interesting battle in the ACC.

More Post-Week 6 Power Rankings: Big 12 | Big Ten | Pac-12 | SEC

ACC Post-Week 6 Power Rankings

RankTeamLWAnalysis
11Clemson (5-0, 3-0): It’s almost becoming routine for the Tigers. Clemson’s offense has a big day, and the defense wreaks havoc against opposing quarterbacks. The Tigers had little trouble with Syracuse on Saturday, opening a 21-0 lead in the first quarter and finishing with a 49-14 victory. Quarterback Tajh Boyd was sharp, setting a school record with 455 passing yards, including a 91-yard bomb to receiver Sammy Watkins. The defense held Syracuse to just 74 passing yards and sacked quarterback Terrel Hunt four times. The Tigers have one more tune up before the huge showdown against Florida State on Oct. 19. Next Week: Boston College
22Florida State (5-0, 3-0): Total dominance. That’s the easiest way to describe Florida State’s 63-0 win over Maryland. Quarterback Jameis Winston threw for 393 yards and five touchdowns, and the defense pitched their first shutout since Sept. 15, 2012. Florida State’s defense needed a good performance after struggling against Boston College, and the Seminoles allowed just 234 yards to a Maryland offense that entered Week 6 averaging 498.5 yards per game. Florida State now has two weeks to prepare for a showdown against Clemson, which could decide which team wins the ACC Atlantic. Next Week: Bye
33Miami (5-0, 1-0): Thanks to a 45-30 win over Georgia Tech on Saturday, the Hurricanes are 5-0 for the first time since 2004. The Hurricanes trailed 17-7 in the first quarter but outscored the Yellow Jackets 38-13 in the final 45 minutes to win 45-30. Despite an injured ankle, quarterback Stephen Morris threw for 324 yards and three scores. Running back Duke Johnson pitched in 184 yards on 22 attempts. Miami’s defense isn’t dominant but has improved this year. Next Week: Bye 
44Virginia Tech (5-1, 2-0): The product on the field isn’t always flashy this year, but the Hokies are quietly building momentum. Virginia Tech opened its three-game home stand with a solid 27-17 victory over North Carolina on Saturday, improving the Hokies to 2-0 in conference play. Quarterback Logan Thomas threw for 293 yards and three touchdowns against the Tar Heels and most importantly, completed 67.9 percent of his throws. Virginia Tech’s defense forced two turnovers and has held four of its six opponents this year to 17 points or less. Next Week: Pittsburgh
55Maryland (4-1, 0-1): After cruising to an easy 4-0 start, the Terrapins failed their first real test of 2013. Maryland was outmanned on both sides of the ball against Florida State, and things didn’t get any better on offense when quarterback C.J. Brown suffered a concussion in the first half. The Terrapins are without their top two cornerbacks, and the secondary was torched for 431 yards by the Seminoles. Maryland is clearly improving, but the gap between Florida State and Clemson and the rest of the Atlantic is still significant. Next Week: Virginia
66Georgia Tech (3-2, 2-2): The Yellow Jackets had a chance to climb back into the Coastal title picture in Miami, but after a 17-7 lead, few things went Georgia Tech’s way. The Yellow Jackets went without a score from the start of the second quarter to 10:38 in the fourth quarter, lost three turnovers and completed 6 of 19 throws for 66 yards. Georgia Tech’s defense – which was reliable through the first four games – allowed Miami to average 10.4 yards per play. It’s only October, but the Yellow Jackets will need a lot of help to get back into the top spot in the Coastal. Next Week: at BYU 
77Pittsburgh (3-1, 2-1): The Panthers had a bye in Week 6 and return to action at Virginia Tech. Pittsburgh has a three-game winning streak and should have some confidence going into Blacksburg, as the Panthers defeated the Hokies 35-17 last year. Quarterback Tom Savage suffered from concussion-like symptoms in the 14-3 win over Virginia, but all signs point to the senior returning to the lineup against Virginia Tech. Next Week: at Virginia Tech
811Boston College (3-2, 1-1): Anything after No. 7 in the power rankings is up for grabs. We give a slight nod to the Eagles for the No. 8 spot, as Boston College surpassed its win total from 2012 with a 48-27 victory over Army on Saturday. Running back Andre Williams gashed the Black Knights for 263 yards and five touchdowns, and quarterback Chase Rettig was efficient (11 of 13, 203 yards). The Eagles had their hands full on defense with Army’s option attack in the first half, but held the Black Knights to just one score in the second half. It may not seem like a huge win in the overall scope of the ACC, but beating Army was critical for Boston College’s bowl hopes. Next Week: at Clemson
98NC State (3-2, 0-2): After Boston College, any team in Athlon’s ACC power rankings could be ranked anywhere in the 9-14 range. The Wolfpack’s struggles in Winston-Salem continued on Saturday, as Wake Forest upset NC State 28-13. NC State has lost six consecutive games on the Demon Deacons’ home turf. While the Wolfpack are 0-2 in ACC play, good news could be coming in the form of quarterback Brandon Mitchell. The senior has not played since the season opener due to a foot injury, but is expected to have a chance to return this Saturday. Next Week: Syracuse
109North Carolina (1-4, 0-2): A 27-17 defeat to Virginia Tech dropped North Carolina to 1-4 and easily the ACC’s most-disappointing team after Week 6. Quarterback Bryn Renner was sidelined with an ankle injury, but Marquise Williams filled in admirably, completing 23 of 35 throws for 277 yards and two scores. Williams was also the Tar Heels’ leading rusher (56 yards). North Carolina’s struggling defense forced eight punts against Virginia Tech but created no turnovers and gave up 15.4 yards per completion. Next Week: Bye  
1110Virginia (2-3, 0-1): The Cavaliers finally showed some signs of life on offense, but four turnovers and 13 penalties was simply too much to overcome against opportunistic and upset-minded Ball State. Quarterback David Watford completed 21 of 36 passes for 209 yards, and running back Kevin Parks recorded 104 yards and two scores on 16 attempts. Although Virginia’s offense didn’t have a perfect outing, the defense also shares blame by allowing Ball State to record 506 yards – including 346 through the air. The Cavaliers have played a challenging schedule so far, and it won’t get any easier the rest of the way. Next Week: at Maryland
1214Wake Forest (3-3, 1-2): The biggest surprise in the ACC from Week 6 took place in Winston-Salem. After struggling to generate anything on offense through five games, Wake Forest recorded 28 points and 382 yards to beat NC State 28-13. The Demon Deacons have defeated the Wolfpack six consecutive times at home, and at least for a week, have quieted some of the critics for coach Jim Grobe. The win gives Wake Forest a little momentum heading into the bye week and manageable games against Syracuse and Duke gives this team a chance to make a run at bowl eligibility. Next Week: Bye
1312Duke (3-2, 0-2): The Blue Devils had a bye in Week 6 and are slated to return to action against Navy on Saturday. Quarterback Anthony Boone missed the last three games due to a collarbone injury but resumed throwing prior to Duke’s 38-31 win over Troy. It’s uncertain if Boone will return in Week 7, but the junior is getting close, and Brandon Connette is a capable fill-in until he’s ready. Next Week: Navy
1413Syracuse (2-4, 0-2): The Orange drew a tough assignment in their ACC opener, losing 49-14 to Clemson. After showing signs of life on offense against Wagner and Tulane, Syracuse generated only 74 passing yards, and starting quarterback Terrel Hunt tossed three picks. The Orange had concerns about their secondary entering this game, and Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd had little trouble finding open receivers, finishing with 455 yards and five scores. Syracuse has time to rebound with seven ACC games remaining. However, four out of the next five contests are on the road. Next Week: at NC State

 

ACC Week 6 Recap and Awards

Offensive Player of the Week: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State
Boston College running back Andre Williams and Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd turned in strong performances this week, but offensive player of the week honors go to Winston. The redshirt freshman is playing with the poise of a fifth-year senior. In Saturday’s win over Maryland, Winston completed 23 of 32 passes for 393 yards and five scores, while rushing for 24 yards on seven attempts. Winston’s five touchdown tosses were the most by a Florida State quarterback since Christian Ponder threw five in 2009, and the redshirt freshman already has three games of at least 300 passing yards.

Defensive Player of the Week: Vic Beasley, DE, Clemson
There were few standout performances in the ACC this week, but Beasley takes the Defensive Player of the Week honors after recording five tackles and two sacks against Syracuse. Four of Beasley’s tackles went for a loss, which helped to limit Syracuse to just 74 passing yards. After five games, the junior leads the NCAA with eight sacks, with six coming in ACC contests. Clemson’s defense ranks eighth in the ACC in yards allowed per game (356.6), but the Tigers are holding opponents to just 16.6 points a game. Beasley’s pass rush has been crucial to Clemson’s success, and the junior is performing at an All-American level in 2013.

Coordinator of the Week: Jeremy Pruitt, Florida State
A week after giving up 34 points and 407 yards to Boston College, the Seminoles were nearly perfect on defense against Maryland. The Terrapins entered Saturday’s game averaging 498.5 yards and 39.8 points per game, but Florida State limited the Terrapins to just 234 yards, pitched a shutout and limited Maryland to just nine first downs. Terrapins' quarterback C.J. Brown suffered a concussion in the first half, but the offense wasn’t moving the ball with much success when he was in the game. Maryland managed just 4.1 yards per play on Saturday, which was their lowest total of the season. Pruitt is in his first year with the Seminoles and some of the defense’s early struggles against the run are largely due to the transition in scheme and personnel. With two weeks to prepare for Clemson, Pruitt should have Florida State’s defense ready for the Tigers’ high-powered offense.

Team of the Week: Florida State
Miami’s win over Georgia Tech was solid, but Florida State’s victory over Maryland was pure dominance. The Seminoles dominated from start to finish and pitched their first shutout over a top-25 team since 1997. The 63-point margin of victory was the most lop-sided victory over a top-25 team in school history. Florida State is 5-0 for the second consecutive season, and now turns its sights to a huge showdown against Clemson on Oct. 19.

Freshman of the Week: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State
Freshman of the week honors in the ACC could essentially be renamed for Winston this year. And here’s the scary part for the rest of the ACC: Winston will only get better. The freshman ranks second in the ACC with 288.2 passing yards per game, averaging an impressive 16 yards per completion. Winston has tossed only two picks and ranks fifth in the NCAA with a 73.2 completion percentage. 

5th Down

• Virginia quarterback David Watford threw for a season high 209 yards in the 48-27 loss to Ball State.

Freshman safety Ryan Janvion led Wake Forest with 11 tackles against NC State.

• Boston College running back Andre Williams rushed for 263 yards and five touchdowns in the Eagles’ 48-27 win over Army. Williams missed the single-game school record by one yard.

• Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd’s 455 passing yards set a single-game school record.

• Syracuse defensive tackle Jay Bromley had a solid outing against Clemson. The senior recorded four tackles (three for a loss) and two sacks.

• Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas has completed at least 67 percent of his passes in his last two games. Thomas does not have an interception in ACC play this year.

• The home team has won the last six meetings in the NC State-Wake Forest series.

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Week 6 in the Pac-12 opened with an entertaining affair in Salt Lake City between UCLA and Utah on Thursday night and concluded on Saturday with a Washington-Stanford matchup that had national title implications.

Despite being outgained by over 200 yards, Stanford earned a huge victory over Washington. The Huskies also deserve some credit, as it’s clear coach Steve Sarkisian has this team trending in the right direction.

Oregon continued to roll up the points and yards against Colorado, winning 57-16 in Boulder on Saturday afternoon.

Washington State picked up a solid conference win at California, while Arizona State lost a three-point non-conference affair to Notre Dame.

More Post-Week 6 Power Rankings: ACC | Big 12 | Big Ten | SEC

Pac-12 Post-Week 6 Power Rankings

RankTeamLWAnalysis
11Oregon (5-0, 2-0): Another week, another blowout win for the Ducks. Oregon’s offense got off to a sluggish start against Colorado, but quarterback Marcus Mariota accounted for seven overall scores, and the defense didn’t allow a touchdown after the first quarter. The Ducks’ offense recorded 755 overall yards – the second-most in school history – and has at least 50 points in all five games this year. After five easy wins, the competition steps up for Oregon this Saturday. Next Week: at Washington
22Stanford (5-0, 3-0): The Cardinal had only 14 first downs and was outgained by 205 yards against Washington, but coach David Shaw’s team still found a way to win. Stanford’s offense did just enough, and even though the defense gave up yards to the Huskies, it made a critical stop late in the fourth quarter and recorded six sacks to seal the victory. The Cardinal are essentially 1B to Oregon’s 1A in the Pac-12 power rankings, with these two teams on a collision course for a huge North Division matchup on Nov. 7. Next Week: at Utah 
33Washington (4-1, 1-1): There’s no shame in the Huskies’ 31-28 loss at Stanford. Washington outgained the Cardinal by 205 yards and had a chance to win late in the fourth quarter, but a pass from quarterback Keith Price to Kevin Smith was ruled incomplete after replay. The Huskies are closing the gap in the Pac-12 North and will have another shot at an upset win this week, as rival Oregon visits Seattle on Saturday afternoon. Next Week: Oregon 
44UCLA (4-0, 1-0): Thanks to a solid performance by quarterback Brett Hundley and some timely defense, the Bruins snapped a two-game losing streak in Salt Lake City, defeating Utah 34-27 on Thursday night. Hundley scored on a passing, rushing and receiving touchdown, while the UCLA defense forced six interceptions and generated three sacks. The win was costly in the injury department for coach Jim Mora, as tackle Torian White and Jordon James suffered ankle injuries. White is out for the remainder of the season, while James is doubtful for next week’s game. Next Week: California
55Arizona State (3-2, 1-1): A week after clobbering USC and ending the Lane Kiffin tenure, the Sun Devils lost 37-34 against Notre Dame. The Sun Devils trailed 24-13 at the end of the third quarter but tied the Fighting Irish at 27 in the fourth. Arizona State’s offense recorded 427 yards, but three turnovers proved to be too much to overcome. Notre Dame’s defense controlled the line of scrimmage, sacking quarterback Taylor Kelly six times, while linebacker Dan Fox scored on an interception return in the fourth quarter. The loss dropped Arizona State to 3-2, but it’s hard to penalize the Sun Devils in the power rankings when the two teams behind them are on bye. Next Week: Colorado
66Oregon State (4-1, 2-0): The Beavers did not play in Week 6 and will hit the road for their next two matchups. Since losing to Eastern Washington in the opener, Oregon State has won four in a row. The defense is struggling, but the Beavers’ offense has been on fire this season, with quarterback Sean Mannion averaging 403.6 passing yards per game. Receiver Brandin Cooks leads the Pac-12 with an average of 10.4 catches per game and ranks second in yards per contest (161.4). Next Week: at Washington State  
77Arizona (3-1, 0-1): The Wildcats had a bye in Week 6 and return to action on Thursday night at USC. Arizona’s rushing attack (291.5 ypg) will face a tough test against a Trojans’ defense holding opponents to just 99.6 yards per game on the ground. Quarterback B.J. Denker did not play well against Washington, and if the Wildcats struggle to move the ball on the ground, the focus on the offense will shift back to the pass. Next Week: at USC (Thursday) 
88Washington State (4-2, 2-1): The Week 6 win over California wasn’t perfect, but the Cougars already have four wins – one more than last season – and are positioned to make a run at a bowl. Quarterback Connor Halliday threw for 521 yards, which was the most by a Washington State passer since Alex Brink threw for 531 in 2005. The Cougars gave up 585 yards to California, but the defense forced five turnovers, three sacks and six tackles for a loss. Next Week: Oregon State
99Utah (3-2, 0-2): The Utes had six turnovers against UCLA, yet still managed to have a chance at a tie late in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Travis Wilson will get credited with the six interceptions, but not all of the throws were his fault. The offensive line deserves blame, as Wilson had defenders in his face all night, and the rushing attack managed only 99 yards on 33 attempts. The Utes have improved since last season, but there’s little margin for error the rest of the year if they want to make a bowl. Next Week: Stanford
1010USC (3-2, 0-2): The Trojans had a bye in Week 6 and return to action on Thursday night. The biggest storyline in Los Angeles during the off week was the coaching change. Interim coach Ed Orgeron has tried to let the players have a little fun, which should help take some of the pressure off this team after a disappointing start. Will it pay off in the win column? USC may not win the Pac-12 South, but there’s too much talent here to finish 5-7 or 6-6. Next Week: Arizona (Thursday)
1111Colorado (2-2, 0-2): Credit coach Mike MacIntyre and his staff for throwing everything they had at Oregon, but the Buffaloes were simply outmanned in a 57-16 loss. Receiver Paul Richardson threw a touchdown pass to give Colorado a 10-8 lead in the first quarter, but the Ducks’ offense eventually got on track, finishing with 755 yards on 96 plays. The Buffaloes don’t have the talent to beat the top teams in the Pac-12, but this team won’t be an easy out this year. Next Week: at Arizona State
1212California (1-4, 0-2): New California coach Sonny Dykes simply needs time to turn the Golden Bears into a bowl team. The Golden Bears dropped to 1-4 after a 44-22 loss to Washington State on Saturday, which might have been their best shot at a conference win the rest of the season. California has a plethora of injuries on defense, and only three seniors were listed as starters on the Week 6 depth chart. With injuries and youth taking its toll, California will take its lumps in 2013. Next Week: at UCLA 

 

Pac-12 Week 6 Awards and Recap
by Braden Gall (@BradenGall)
 

Offensive Player of the Week: Ty Montgomery, WR, Stanford

As usual, there were plenty of worthy candidates who accounted for seven touchdowns (Marcus Mariota), topped 500 yards passing (Connor Halliday) or scored three different ways (Brett Hundley), but only one posted 290 all-purpose yards in the biggest conference game to date. Montgomery took the opening kickoff 99 yards for the game's first score and Stanford never looked back. He finished with 204 return yards — a 35.0 yards per return average on his other three returns — three receptions for 56 yards, a receiving touchdown, a return touchdown and 30 yards rushing on two attempts. He was a one-man show in a game highlighted by its defensive prowess.

Defensive Player of the Week: Shayne Skov, LB, Stanford

UCLA had a trio of great performances from Eric Kendricks, Anthony Barr and Anthony Jefferson, but Shayne Skov was all over the field against an excellent Washington offense. Skov played one of the best games of his career, posting 14 total tackles and 1.5 sacks in the huge win over the division rival Huskies. With Trent Murphy, A.J. Tarpley and James Vaughters, the Cardinal boast the best linebacker corps in the nation.

Team of the Week: Stanford

Stanford's slimmest of margins entailed an Keith Price tipped-pass interception inside the Cardinal's 5-yard line with less than seven minutes to play and a final minute replay booth decision. Kevin Hogan was solid — 12 of 20, 100 yards with two total touchdowns — but didn't turn any Heisman voters' heads. More important, the defense pressured Price all night and a playmaker emerged on the outside of the offense in Montgomery. This team has a nasty schedule but the poise and veteran leadership needed to conquer it was on full display Saturday night as the Huskies rallied. Stanford won despite being outgained by more than 200 yards.

Coordinator of the Week: Lou Spanos, UCLA

The Bruins went into a hostile environment and returned home still unbeaten due to extraordinary performance by the defense. Spanos' defense had quarterback Travis Wilson solved from the opening kickoff. UCLA forced six turnovers, registered three sacks and held an offense averaging over 500 yards per and 42 points per game to just 387 yards and 20 offensive points. But maybe the most critical performance came on third downs, where the Bruins held Utah to just 2 o -13. This unit has star power and could quickly develop into an elite defense should the young players continue to hold their own.

Freshman of the Week: Daquawn Brown, DB, Washington State

At some point, we will all have to acknowledge the Pac-12's No. 2 tackler, Colorado freshman linebacker Addison Gillam. He posted 15 tackles, two for loss and one sack in the blowout loss to Oregon. But Washington State's freshman defensive back played an equally large role in a road win for the Cougars. Brown posted six tackles and his second interception of the season against a Golden Bears offense that threw the ball 62 times.

Fifth Down

• Washington had more than twice as many first downs (30) as Stanford (14). But the Huskies never led the Cardinal.

• The Huskies had 489 yards of offense. Stanford had 279.

• UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley threw, ran and caught a touchdown pass on Thursday night against the Utes. He finished with 211 yards passing, 85 yards rushing and seven yards receiving.

• Oregon's Marcus Mariota scored seven touchdowns against the Buffaloes this weekend. So after 18 career games, he has 59 total TDs and just six interceptions. That is 3.3 touchdowns and 0.3 interceptions per game and basically a 10:1 total TD-to-interception career rate. He has gone 202 consecutive attempts without an interception.

• The Ducks scored at least 50 points for fifth straight time. According to ESPN Stats and Info, there are only the second team in history to do so, joining Princeton in 1885.

• There were 129 pass attempts for 1,027 passing yards between Cal and Washington State.

• Taylor Kelly through for his fifth straight 300-yard game but the Sun Devils lost thanks to two more interceptions. He has six on the year, ahead of only Connor Halliday (10) and Travis Wilson (nine) in the Pac-12.

• Nine players are tied for the lead nationally in interceptions with four. Three of them play in the Pac-12: Colorado's Greg Henderson, Oregon State's Steven Nelson and Wazzu's Deone Bucannon. Bucannon also leads the league in tackles with 56 total stops.

 

Teaser:
Post date: Monday, October 7, 2013 - 08:00
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Week 6 in the Pac-12 opened with an entertaining affair in Salt Lake City between UCLA and Utah on Thursday night and concluded on Saturday with a Washington-Stanford matchup that had national title implications.

Despite being outgained by over 200 yards, Stanford earned a huge victory over Washington. The Huskies also deserve some credit, as it’s clear coach Steve Sarkisian has this team trending in the right direction.

Oregon continued to roll up the points and yards against Colorado, winning 57-16 in Boulder on Saturday afternoon.

Washington State picked up a solid conference win at California, while Arizona State lost a three-point non-conference affair to Notre Dame.

More Post-Week 6 Power Rankings: ACC | Big 12 | Big Ten | SEC

Pac-12 Post-Week 6 Power Rankings

RankTeamLWAnalysis
11Oregon (5-0, 2-0): Another week, another blowout win for the Ducks. Oregon’s offense got off to a sluggish start against Colorado, but quarterback Marcus Mariota accounted for seven overall scores, and the defense didn’t allow a touchdown after the first quarter. The Ducks’ offense recorded 755 overall yards – the second-most in school history – and has at least 50 points in all five games this year. After five easy wins, the competition steps up for Oregon this Saturday. Next Week: at Washington
22Stanford (5-0, 3-0): The Cardinal had only 14 first downs and was outgained by 205 yards against Washington, but coach David Shaw’s team still found a way to win. Stanford’s offense did just enough, and even though the defense gave up yards to the Huskies, it made a critical stop late in the fourth quarter and recorded six sacks to seal the victory. The Cardinal are essentially 1B to Oregon’s 1A in the Pac-12 power rankings, with these two teams on a collision course for a huge North Division matchup on Nov. 7. Next Week: at Utah 
33Washington (4-1, 1-1): There’s no shame in the Huskies’ 31-28 loss at Stanford. Washington outgained the Cardinal by 205 yards and had a chance to win late in the fourth quarter, but a pass from quarterback Keith Price to Kevin Smith was ruled incomplete after replay. The Huskies are closing the gap in the Pac-12 North and will have another shot at an upset win this week, as rival Oregon visits Seattle on Saturday afternoon. Next Week: Oregon 
44UCLA (4-0, 1-0): Thanks to a solid performance by quarterback Brett Hundley and some timely defense, the Bruins snapped a two-game losing streak in Salt Lake City, defeating Utah 34-27 on Thursday night. Hundley scored on a passing, rushing and receiving touchdown, while the UCLA defense forced six interceptions and generated three sacks. The win was costly in the injury department for coach Jim Mora, as tackle Torian White and Jordon James suffered ankle injuries. White is out for the remainder of the season, while James is doubtful for next week’s game. Next Week: California
55Arizona State (3-2, 1-1): A week after clobbering USC and ending the Lane Kiffin tenure, the Sun Devils lost 37-34 against Notre Dame. The Sun Devils trailed 24-13 at the end of the third quarter but tied the Fighting Irish at 27 in the fourth. Arizona State’s offense recorded 427 yards, but three turnovers proved to be too much to overcome. Notre Dame’s defense controlled the line of scrimmage, sacking quarterback Taylor Kelly six times, while linebacker Dan Fox scored on an interception return in the fourth quarter. The loss dropped Arizona State to 3-2, but it’s hard to penalize the Sun Devils in the power rankings when the two teams behind them are on bye. Next Week: Colorado
66Oregon State (4-1, 2-0): The Beavers did not play in Week 6 and will hit the road for their next two matchups. Since losing to Eastern Washington in the opener, Oregon State has won four in a row. The defense is struggling, but the Beavers’ offense has been on fire this season, with quarterback Sean Mannion averaging 403.6 passing yards per game. Receiver Brandin Cooks leads the Pac-12 with an average of 10.4 catches per game and ranks second in yards per contest (161.4). Next Week: at Washington State  
77Arizona (3-1, 0-1): The Wildcats had a bye in Week 6 and return to action on Thursday night at USC. Arizona’s rushing attack (291.5 ypg) will face a tough test against a Trojans’ defense holding opponents to just 99.6 yards per game on the ground. Quarterback B.J. Denker did not play well against Washington, and if the Wildcats struggle to move the ball on the ground, the focus on the offense will shift back to the pass. Next Week: at USC (Thursday) 
88Washington State (4-2, 2-1): The Week 6 win over California wasn’t perfect, but the Cougars already have four wins – one more than last season – and are positioned to make a run at a bowl. Quarterback Connor Halliday threw for 521 yards, which was the most by a Washington State passer since Alex Brink threw for 531 in 2005. The Cougars gave up 585 yards to California, but the defense forced five turnovers, three sacks and six tackles for a loss. Next Week: Oregon State
99Utah (3-2, 0-2): The Utes had six turnovers against UCLA, yet still managed to have a chance at a tie late in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Travis Wilson will get credited with the six interceptions, but not all of the throws were his fault. The offensive line deserves blame, as Wilson had defenders in his face all night, and the rushing attack managed only 99 yards on 33 attempts. The Utes have improved since last season, but there’s little margin for error the rest of the year if they want to make a bowl. Next Week: Stanford
1010USC (3-2, 0-2): The Trojans had a bye in Week 6 and return to action on Thursday night. The biggest storyline in Los Angeles during the off week was the coaching change. Interim coach Ed Orgeron has tried to let the players have a little fun, which should help take some of the pressure off this team after a disappointing start. Will it pay off in the win column? USC may not win the Pac-12 South, but there’s too much talent here to finish 5-7 or 6-6. Next Week: Arizona (Thursday)
1111Colorado (2-2, 0-2): Credit coach Mike MacIntyre and his staff for throwing everything they had at Oregon, but the Buffaloes were simply outmanned in a 57-16 loss. Receiver Paul Richardson threw a touchdown pass to give Colorado a 10-8 lead in the first quarter, but the Ducks’ offense eventually got on track, finishing with 755 yards on 96 plays. The Buffaloes don’t have the talent to beat the top teams in the Pac-12, but this team won’t be an easy out this year. Next Week: at Arizona State
1212California (1-4, 0-2): New California coach Sonny Dykes simply needs time to turn the Golden Bears into a bowl team. The Golden Bears dropped to 1-4 after a 44-22 loss to Washington State on Saturday, which might have been their best shot at a conference win the rest of the season. California has a plethora of injuries on defense, and only three seniors were listed as starters on the Week 6 depth chart. With injuries and youth taking its toll, California will take its lumps in 2013. Next Week: at UCLA 

 

Pac-12 Week 6 Awards and Recap
by Braden Gall (@BradenGall)
 

Offensive Player of the Week: Ty Montgomery, WR, Stanford

As usual, there were plenty of worthy candidates who accounted for seven touchdowns (Marcus Mariota), topped 500 yards passing (Connor Halliday) or scored three different ways (Brett Hundley), but only one posted 290 all-purpose yards in the biggest conference game to date. Montgomery took the opening kickoff 99 yards for the game's first score and Stanford never looked back. He finished with 204 return yards — a 35.0 yards per return average on his other three returns — three receptions for 56 yards, a receiving touchdown, a return touchdown and 30 yards rushing on two attempts. He was a one-man show in a game highlighted by its defensive prowess.

Defensive Player of the Week: Shayne Skov, LB, Stanford

UCLA had a trio of great performances from Eric Kendricks, Anthony Barr and Anthony Jefferson, but Shayne Skov was all over the field against an excellent Washington offense. Skov played one of the best games of his career, posting 14 total tackles and 1.5 sacks in the huge win over the division rival Huskies. With Trent Murphy, A.J. Tarpley and James Vaughters, the Cardinal boast the best linebacker corps in the nation.

Team of the Week: Stanford

Stanford's slimmest of margins entailed an Keith Price tipped-pass interception inside the Cardinal's 5-yard line with less than seven minutes to play and a final minute replay booth decision. Kevin Hogan was solid — 12 of 20, 100 yards with two total touchdowns — but didn't turn any Heisman voters' heads. More important, the defense pressured Price all night and a playmaker emerged on the outside of the offense in Montgomery. This team has a nasty schedule but the poise and veteran leadership needed to conquer it was on full display Saturday night as the Huskies rallied. Stanford won despite being outgained by more than 200 yards.

Coordinator of the Week: Lou Spanos, UCLA

The Bruins went into a hostile environment and returned home still unbeaten due to extraordinary performance by the defense. Spanos' defense had quarterback Travis Wilson solved from the opening kickoff. UCLA forced six turnovers, registered three sacks and held an offense averaging over 500 yards per and 42 points per game to just 387 yards and 20 offensive points. But maybe the most critical performance came on third downs, where the Bruins held Utah to just 2 o -13. This unit has star power and could quickly develop into an elite defense should the young players continue to hold their own.

Freshman of the Week: Daquawn Brown, DB, Washington State

At some point, we will all have to acknowledge the Pac-12's No. 2 tackler, Colorado freshman linebacker Addison Gillam. He posted 15 tackles, two for loss and one sack in the blowout loss to Oregon. But Washington State's freshman defensive back played an equally large role in a road win for the Cougars. Brown posted six tackles and his second interception of the season against a Golden Bears offense that threw the ball 62 times.

Fifth Down

• Washington had more than twice as many first downs (30) as Stanford (14). But the Huskies never led the Cardinal.

• The Huskies had 489 yards of offense. Stanford had 279.

• UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley threw, ran and caught a touchdown pass on Thursday night against the Utes. He finished with 211 yards passing, 85 yards rushing and seven yards receiving.

• Oregon's Marcus Mariota scored seven touchdowns against the Buffaloes this weekend. So after 18 career games, he has 59 total TDs and just six interceptions. That is 3.3 touchdowns and 0.3 interceptions per game and basically a 10:1 total TD-to-interception career rate. He has gone 202 consecutive attempts without an interception.

• The Ducks scored at least 50 points for fifth straight time. According to ESPN Stats and Info, there are only the second team in history to do so, joining Princeton in 1885.

• There were 129 pass attempts for 1,027 passing yards between Cal and Washington State.

• Taylor Kelly through for his fifth straight 300-yard game but the Sun Devils lost thanks to two more interceptions. He has six on the year, ahead of only Connor Halliday (10) and Travis Wilson (nine) in the Pac-12.

• Nine players are tied for the lead nationally in interceptions with four. Three of them play in the Pac-12: Colorado's Greg Henderson, Oregon State's Steven Nelson and Wazzu's Deone Bucannon. Bucannon also leads the league in tackles with 56 total stops.

 

Teaser:
2013 Pac-12 Post-Week 6 Power Rankings
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