College Football Predictions: Which Undefeated Teams Will Stay That Way?
by Trevor Whenham - 10/15/2010
Six weeks of the college football season have come and gone. That has been enough time to expose the issues of a lot of teams, but not all of them. There are still 13 ranked teams that are undefeated. By the end of the season there will be far fewer - perhaps just a couple. Here’s a look at which of the unbeaten teams have a good shot at staying that way, and which ones should enjoy it while it lasts:
Good Chance Of Going All The Way
Ohio State - The Buckeyes have played well this year but outside of Miami they haven’t really played anyone yet. They only have two games that should really scare them down the stretch - trips to Wisconsin and Iowa. They are better than both of those teams, so if the Buckeyes can keep doing what they do best then they will be undefeated and heading to the BCS Championship Game.
Boise State - They will get 11 wins without breaking a sweat. The 12th game is a trip to Nevada in the second to last game of the year. Fasten your seatbelts because that will be a wild and crazy shootout. Boise State is going to be in very tough in that one, but I like their chances.
Utah - The Utes play two very tough games in a row - at Air Force and at home against TCU. Playing TCU at home is a huge advantage. I believe that the winner of that game will be undefeated, and Utah has the edge.
Michigan State - While I don’t think that this is a world-class team, and they have some disciplinary issues that continue to be a problem, they have a schedule that sets up ridiculously well for them. They have already beaten Wisconsin and they don’t play Ohio State this year, so their biggest remaining challenge is a trip to Iowa. That’s a tough game, but I think the Spartans can win it. If they do that then it should be a smooth road to unbeaten for them - they play four flawed teams in Illinois, Northwestern, Minnesota and Purdue, and a clearly troubled team from Penn State. This would be a wildly unlikely unbeaten squad.
Could Happen, But Likely Won’t
Oregon - The Ducks have an impressive win against Stanford to their credit, but the second half of their schedule is tougher. They play at USC, Cal, and Oregon State and host Arizona and a UCLA team that can be tough when they get their act together. Oregon can win any of those games, but winning all of them is a tough task.
TCU - I love this team on both sides of the ball. Home games against BYU and Air Force and a road trip to Utah are all big challenges, though. Utah in particular is going to be very tough. The Horned Frogs are good enough to go undefeated, but could trip up along the way.
Nevada - Like Boise State they are one game away from an unbeaten season - their schedule outside of Boise State is very beatable for the Wolf Pack. The Broncos are a whole different matter. They are fortunate to play Boise State at home, but they are still less experienced in big game situations, and that gives Boise State the edge.
Not Going To Happen
Nebraska - The Huskers have looked good so far, but they haven’t exactly played a brutal schedule - Washington is their best opponent by a wide margin. They have seven games remaining including contests against Texas, Oklahoma State and Missouri in the next three weeks. This team has yet to be truly tested, and with a young QB they are going to stumble at some point.
Oklahoma - Their defense has only been middle-of-the-pack this year, and their offense is lousy on the ground, and inconsistent overall. This team has only played five games, and they haven’t done anything to make me believe that they have seven more wins in them.
Auburn - I like Cam Newton a lot, but he’s just not going to be undefeated. Three of their six remaining games are against teams currently ranked in the Top 12 - Arkansas, LSU, and Alabama. Auburn is good, but not good enough to win all of those games.
LSU - They have a pretty terrible offense, and their coach is a moron. Like Auburn they play three games against teams currently ranked in the Top 12, and it’s hard to imagine that they can keep it together through all of those games. The SEC has a habit of cannibalizing themselves, and it’s going to happen again.
Oklahoma State - Nope. They haven’t beaten anyone, and they have had a couple of close calls already. Four of their remaining seven games qualify as tough, and their defense just isn’t good enough to win all four of them.
Missouri - Again, nope. They have had a ridiculously easy five-game stretch so far, so they get almost no credit for winning these games. They move into the big time starting next week, and this team absolutely will not stand up under the pressure.
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