Appetizers before the Showdown:
Michigan State at Ohio State, Noon, ABC
Gosh this game fell off the map quickly. Someone needs to tell me why I would favor Ohio State in this game other than being at home? Michigan fans (notably on MGoBlog) are getting cute about saying that Notre Dame hasn't beaten anyone with a winning record. Well folks, Ohio State is about the same. Their best win is over Iowa, who got blown out by Iowa State who just lost to Baylor. Yummy. But back to this game. This is the match of the teams that the month of October has forgotten. Michigan State proved inept against Michigan and Ohio State can now officially be ranked and filed as an overrated club, if you thought highly of them to begin with. This is a offense vs. defense battle.
However, for all my bad mouthing of the Buckeyes, I don't trust the Spartans. They are in free fall beginning here.
Ohio State 27, Michigan State 23
Wisconsin at Minnesota, 12:00, ESPN
Have the Golden Gophers taken the next step in the Big Ten and ready to make a run for the conference crown? Will the Badgers respond from the 51 points Northwestern laid on them? This will be one of those games that passes the time until the Showcase in South Bend. I think Minnesota wins and gets everyone talking. Wisconsin is a lot like Michigan State. I think they had their moment in the sun beating Michigan.
Minnesota 24, Wisconsin 17
I will not see these games...thanks to ABC Regional coverage (ugh!) I get Louisville-West Virginia...so PSU-UM has no chance, but then again how many of these games will be more than commercial break and halftime viewing?
Penn State at Michigan, 3:30, ABC
This game all depends upon which team shows up for Michigan. Penn State will play stodgy defense and their offense will try not to lose the game, but Michigan needs to hang it out. Why not be aggressive now LLLoyd Carr? The Wolverines lose this one and the 1974 bowl streak is in jeopardy with Iowa on the road and Ohio State coming to Ann Arbor.
Hart is back, finally, full strength, but then again wasn't he last week? Will Chad Henne continue to be the quarterback/lightning rod for the UM fans? Will the Big House stay the Quiet House?
I think Penn State's win over Ohio State last week has them believing in themselves completely.
Penn State 16, Michigan 14
Florida at LSU, 3:30, CBS
Notre Dame can lose 50-0 to USC and I will still thank my lucky stars that the Urban Decay is in Gainesville. Chris Leak is either A) getting wasted or B) just a pretty-boy quarterback who doesn't excel in big games. Could the Gators be held to less than a touchdown again?
LSU is reeling still from the Tennessee game, but getting over that hump the Tigers still have a clear path to Atlanta. This is simply another step to take to position themselves to have a chance. In the end, I think the pressure is off the Bayou Bengals and the new coaching staff. They will excel.
LSU 24, Florida 10
I'll talk about the big game tomorrow...
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