Week 4 Rewind
Nebraska vs 19 Michigan
Although the game ended as a 56-10 win for the Wolverines, this one wasn’t even that close. Scott Frost is still winless as the head coach of his alma mater and the losing streak will likely continue this week as Nebraska prepares for Purdue.
22 Texas A&M vs 1 Alabama
Last week, I briefly mentioned how impressive QB Tua Tagovailoa has been for the Crimson Tide, and he took it to another level in Week 4’s 45-23 win over the Aggies. If he keeps terrorizing defenses with his arm and legs, Bama will likely coast to the College Football Playoff.
14 Mississippi State vs Kentucky
If a historic victory over Florida wasn’t enough, the Wildcats decided to up the ante with another statement win over the Bulldogs. Now ranked in the AP Top 25 for the first time since the 2007 season, the No. 17 Wildcats have a legitimate shot at riding the momentum to play in a bowl game that doesn’t start with the words “Music City.”
Week 5 Fast Forward
(+7) Old Dominion vs East Carolina
Coming off the upset of the year, there is definitely a case to be made for avoiding the Monarchs from a betting perspective. That’s because smaller FBS programs usually follow up a legendary win with a sloppy performance the next week.
But when those teams, like Old Dominion, refuse to let the unfamiliar rush of interview requests and exposure from the national media negatively impact their preparation, their upset win can serve as the catalyst for a remarkable season.
I have a feeling that’s exactly what’s going to happen for the Monarchs as they square off against East Carolina as seven-point underdogs. This will require new starting QB Blake LaRussa, who came off the bench last week and accounted for 495 yards and five total TDs against Virginia Tech’s suffocating defense, to prove that he’s not a one-hit wonder.
He’ll be tested by a Pirates defense that shut down North Carolina in a dominant 41-19 performance earlier in the season and did enough to win despite a disappointing 20-13 loss to USF last weekend. If LaRussa shows off his pinpoint accuracy that turned heads last weekend, Old Dominion’s win streak will improve to two straight games.
On the heels of 2017’s disastrous 3-9 record, Hawaii Head Coach Nick Rolovich decided to bring back the run-and-shoot offense that he ran as the signal caller for the Rainbow Warriors in the early 2000s.
After a 4-1 start to the season, it looks like he made the right call.
With QB Cole McDonald behind center, Hawaii is racking up 353.4 passing yards per game in the new offense. Although this version of the run-and-shoot isn’t the exact scheme that former Hawaii Head Coach June Jones popularized at the turn of this century, the two offenses are very similar.
“The game’s changed since 2001, so there are different wrinkles, but it’s essentially the same offense,” Rolovich told The Washington Post.
In an era where overly stubborn coaches refuse to adapt until it’s too late, Rolovich should be praised for willingly adjusting his offense and bringing relevance to a program that has struggled to find its footing this decade.
Keep an eye out for Rolovich, who should be a contender for the AP College Football Coach of the Year Award if the Rainbow Warriors keep winning.
Tweet of the Week
Callie Brownson is tired of qualified women being turned away from their dream jobs just because they are women. That’s why she’s breaking barriers as Dartmouth College football’s first-ever female coach. pic.twitter.com/VfNTG1zSSJ
— HuffPost (@HuffPost) September 26, 2018
12 West Virginia vs 25 Texas Tech
Vegas has the over/under for this Big 12 battle at 72 points, but even that feels low. Considering that Texas Tech leads the nation with 623.5 yards per game while West Virginia sits at 545.3 (eighth in the FBS), plan on this game coming down to a fourth-quarter shootout between quarterbacks Will Grier and Alan Bowman.
4 Ohio State vs 9 Penn State
Two of the best coaches in college football match wits as Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes head to Happy Valley to take on James Franklin and the Nittany Lions. Since both offenses are averaging over 54 points a game, enjoy the fireworks between OSU QB Dwayne Haskins and PSU QB Trace McSorley. The winner of this one will have the inside track as the East Division’s representative in December’s Big Ten Championship.
7 Stanford vs 8 Notre Dame
Another week, another top-25 matchup for the Stanford Cardinal. Let’s hope that their Week 5 matchup with Notre Dame doesn’t have an ending anywhere near as dramatic as their 38-31 overtime win over Oregon because I don’t think my heart can handle it. By replacing QB Brandon Wimbush with Ian Book last week, the Fighting Irish offense finally flexed its muscles en route to a 56-27 win over Wake Forest. Another quality outing from Book will likely result in a hard-fought win for the Irish.