by Matt Fischer
This season’s “Game of the Century” went down Saturday in College Station, Texas as defending National Champs Alabama went to Texas A&M and defeated Johnny Football and crew. A.J. McCarron put on an impressive performance leading Alabama to the 49-42 win. Vinnie Sunseri had a great interception return and looked like he should be getting some snaps on the offensive side of the ball. HaHa Clinton-Dix had a terrible penalty called on him and was temporarily ejected but luckily replay cleared him to stay in the game but Bama still suffered a 15 penalty for the incorrect call.
The ending in Tempe as Saturday’s action wrapped up was bizarre. Wisconsin’s QB Joel Stave tried downing the ball deep in Arizona State territory to setup a game winning field goal but he never took a knee. Some people blame this Wisconsin loss on the officials or ASU for lying on the ball. Neither are to blame, this one is on Stave. He never took a knew and by simply setting the ball down, that’s a fumble. That ball was live and free for the taking. It shouldn’t have much of an impact on the Badgers season. Gives them a loss but it’s not in the conference and they’re not expected to be in BCS contention.
I was stunned Saturday afternoon to see Michigan struggling to put away lowly Akron. I give it to Terry Bowden’s team for nearly winning in the Big House but failing to convert just yards away from a huge upset. This was a letdown for the Wolverines who won a big game against Notre Dame last week.
The Wolverines near upset was only part of a horrible weekend for the Big Ten. The Pac-12 took 3 of 4 against the Big Ten this weekend with the Big Ten only winning the most lopsided matchup as Ohio State played a non-bowl team Cal. Nebraska was destroyed by UCLA. The Huskers were completely obliterated by the Bruins in the second half. These wins push the Pac-12 solidly into the second best conference in the nation behind the all-powerful SEC.
Texas is in total disarray. Things can’t be going well this week in Austin. They fired Manny Diaz last week but the defense still gave up 44 against Ole Miss. The Rebels were our top play of the week because of Texas’ pourous defense. The Longhorns have talent on that side of the ball but simply don’t have a scheme that works. There is going to be a major overhaul at UT this offseason.
Here are my weekly awards:
Team of the Week: UCLA Bruins – The Bruins lost a teammate just a week ago and went out and had a slow start as they fell behind 21-3 at Nebraska on Saturday. It’d have been easy for them to pack it in but they came roaring back to smash Nebraska 41-21.
Player of the Week: Mike Evans (WR – Texas A&M) – Despite the loss to Alabama, Evans had a monster game. He caught seven passes for 279 yards and 1 touchdown. He looked like a man among boys out there as simply dominated the Alabama defense.
Game of the Week: Alabama at Texas A&M – This was a much hyped game but it lived up to it. Tremendous offensive performances from both sides as the Tide rolled to a 49-42 win. It was a game that saw teams make runs. A&M jumped out to an early 14-0 game before Bama came charging back.