Lane Kiffin can't seem to get away from trouble. He was the Raiders head coach for a few seasons before given the boot by longtime owner Al Davis. He then tried to revive Tennessee football, before bolting for USC and California. That left Volunteer fans with a sour taste in their mouth, and now Kiffin has troubles arising once again at USC. Current Athletic Director Pat Haden wasn't around when Kiffin was hired, and has kept hush about Kiffin's job status thus far, but that could change in the next three months.
In a loss last Saturday to conference foe Oregon, a student manager was found to be deflating footballs on the USC sideline. Kiffin in a press conference acknowledged that the manager was "working alone" and was fired in the process. Colin Cowherd of ESPN Radio and host of SportsNation on ESPN, had callers and emails from student managers around the country on Thursday, and most of them all agreed that the manager surely wasn't working alone.
If you have been paying attention to anything I’ve been saying for the past 8 weeks then you already know how I feel about Johnny Manziel. Having first watched Manziel play week 4 vs Arkansas, it was clear to me as to how and why and he was simply the best QB on the field that day, which is saying a lot considering Arkansas QB Tyler Wilson was projected to be one of the best QBs not just in the SEC but in the entire nation.
Manziel exploded onto the college football scene this season, leading the SEC in total offense with 383.2 YPG and rushing with 102.4 YPG and guiding Texas A&M to a 7-2 record and a 4-2 record in SEC play. Manziel is currently completing 66.6% of his passes and has thrown for 2,527 passing yards, that’s good for 2nd in the SEC while he ranks 3rd in the conference in passing yards per game averaging 280.8 per game.
He is must-see TV anymore.
A run, a pass, a rabbit pulled out of his helmet – you name it and Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel can provide it these days, and provide it with style, some panache, some electricity that has proven so highlight-worthy than much of the nation’s college football fandom has stood up and taken notice of what’s going on with a two-loss team … and part of it even thinks the 15th-ranked Aggies (7-2, 4-2 SEC) can challenge top-ranked Alabama (9-0, 6-0) this Saturday afternoon in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
The latter seems a bit far-fetched. But is it?
Think about it – who expected a freshman to take the reins in College Station, Texas, and not only carry Kevin Sumlin’s crew into the big, bad Southeastern Conference and earn some respect, but actually make a little noise? Put it this way, a week after the Tide knocked Mississippi State from the unbeaten ranks with a 38-7 runaway at home, Johnny Football and Co. took care of the Bulldogs, 38-13, in Starkville, Miss.
That’s a case of pick your poison as to which was more impressive … or damaging to MSU.
The new BCS Poll is out and, once again, it's filled with teams from the Southeastern Conference. Seven to be exact. Five of the top eight spots are occupied by an SEC team. Alabama sits at the top in the number one spot for the tenth consecutive week. Fellow SEC teams: Georgia, Florida, LSU and South Carolina hold the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th spots respectively. Texas A&M moves up to 15th and Mississippi State falls to 21st after a loss to the Aggies.
There was a little shakeup at the top with Oregon leap-frogging Notre Dame after the Ducks beat USC in the Coliseum, while the Irish needed three overtimes to beat an unranked Pitt team.
The current standings are listed below.
1. Alabama2. Kansas State3. Oregon4. Notre Dame5. Georgia6. Florida7. LSU8. South Carolina9. Louisville10. FSU11. Oregon State12. Oklahoma13. Clemson14. Stanford15. Texas A&M16. Nebraska17. Texas18. UCLA19. Southern Cal20. La Tech21. Miss State22. Texas Tech23. Rutgers24. Northwestern25. Toledo
Some random thoughts, a few potshots and maybe even a called shot or two in the future following a weekend of college football …
– Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly ain’t the only guy who thinks his Irish ain’t all that and a nag of chips. But this isn’t the week to point out their flaws or good fortune. Yeah unranked and underachieving Pitt has ND on the ropes Saturday in South Bend, Ind. – on the scoreboard. In reality, the Irish dominated, outgaining the Panthers by better than 200 yards in a 29-26 overtime victory. In short, they deserved the outcome they got.
– Conversely, what in the world is Florida doing on offense? A couple weeks ago everyone went nuts when the Gators beat South Carolina by 33 – and got outgained in the process. Folks, no matter how you slice, that isn’t impressive. It’s winning on luck, circumstance … and, sometimes, when actually being beaten. Such was the case in their 14-7 decision against visiting Missouri on Saturday. Just chill a bit on the Gators’ greatness. There is none at this point.