"Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel"

My new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" is the follow-up to "Illegal Procedure" and "Roughing the Passer" and is now available in print and in e-formats at amazon.com, smashwords.com and iBooks. Follow me on twitter @kevinkrest.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Perfect Four, Plus One, Prevail...Barely

The Luck of the Irish, the Power of the Tide and More: For a while yesterday it looked as if we would be down to three, or maybe even two title contenders in college football. But alas, the Irish pulled it out in overtime, the Crimson Tide somehow found a way to get a late score, Oregon flat out kept the gas on until the end and Kansas State continued doing what they've done all year. So as we sit here  on Sunday morning, with four weeks left in the season, there are still four undefeated teams atop the standings in college football. There is a fifth that is quietly moving into consideration, as Louisville also stayed undefeated by spotting Temple an early lead and then cruising to victory.  We still have one-loss teams, such as Georgia, Florida, Oregon St., Clemson and Florida State hanging around. There are still too many scenarios to consider on the way to Miami, but let's just look at the most likely stumbling blocks for the top four. For Alabama, it's likely now that only an SEC Championship game match-up against Georgia, which can clinch the SEC East with a victory over Auburn on Saturday, stands in their way. Considering the way LSU stayed with the Tide, I would expect Mark Richt, the Bulldogs coach, to take a very hard look at that game film. Georgia's defense and timely passing game can give Alabama the same fits that LSU did. Kansas State still has TCU and Texas to play. With their victory at Texas Tech yesterday, it appears the Longhorns have fixed some of their early season issues, making the season ending game in Manhattan crucial to the national scene, but only if the Wildcats get by TCU in Fort Worth, which handed West Virginia a 2 OT loss in Morgantown by virtue of a two-point conversion. Notre Dame has what should be two easy games against Wake Forest and Boston College before traveling to Los Angeles for a showdown with USC, a 62 - 51 loser to Oregon on Saturday. The Trojans will put more pressure on a strong Irish defense than they've seen all season. If Barkley hits his targets like he did against the Ducks, Notre Dame could be in for a long game. And now Oregon, which had been expecting a rematch with USC in the Pac-12 title game, may have to contend with UCLA instead, a 66 - 10 winner over Arizona. However, the Bruins end the season against USC and Stanford, making the Pac-12 South still too close to call. And the Ducks themselves end the season against Stanford and Oregon State. One poor game offensively and the Ducks could find themselves on the outside looking in. All in all, it makes for a fascinating finish to the season. I'm still predicting that we end up with no more than two undefeated teams when the dust settles on Dec. 1. The big question is, who will they be? Heck, I have no clue, but it will be a lot of fun watching how it plays out.