And Utah Football does it again! Except better! This really has been an awesome season as a fan, but that dang USC loss just won’t stop bothering me. Colorado nearly took care of business to ease the pressure, but alas, they cracked and USC continues as the leader in the south despite their overall record and ranking. After watching the last quarter of the Oregon game, I’m not so sure the Ducks are up to the task of handling the Trojans, which makes me even more nervous. I guess Utah does have to take care of its own business against Washington first, which I have felt since the end of last season shouldn’t be as big of an issue as last year, since you know, they lost their entire team (said while eyeing the Utes 2020 squad). Yes the Huskies are still a good team and have a great coaching staff, but it should be squad Utah should be able to handle much better than last year.
For this weeks comparisons, I ended up going with only 2 underrated teams. Because, well, you’ll see.
Ok, so the overrated teams first. We have SMU coming in 3rd (-13). Congrats, and welcome to an elite group of teams. You have done enough to earn some national cred, but you have done it against… some less impressive teams. The TCU gets some attention, especially with their win over Texas this weekend. That coupled with not losing a game explains a lot. Keep it up and you may just find yourselves in a NY6 game. San Diego State (-23), the pinnacle of power in the Mountain West (along w/ Boise State). The only loss on the season is to Utah State. Win out and you may just end up in that NY6 game, assuming there is a loss on the part of SMU. And for the most overrated team, Wake Forest (-31). They continue to win (mostly), so they get the nod, despite some really mediocre play. I think they are they biggest test for Clemson, and it would be amazing to see that upset. It would definitely open the door for whoever wins the PAC 12 to get into the playoff. That or 3 SEC teams (cue exaggerated eye roll). Go Wake Forest!
And now the underrated teams. Like I said, just two this week cause overranking is so much cooler these days. I thought things would trend more toward even rankings, but the overranking pool just is a better place to be I guess. Both underrated teams were former top 10 teams, and both suffered a loss this weekend. Oklahoma (+4) is still playing great football, but that stunner will get you in the rankings every time. I’m ok with it, cause it allowed Utah to eke ahead of the Sooners in the AP poll. The most underrated team is Wisconsin (+11). Averaging out for a great season, but just couldn’t hang with the Buckeyes who happen to be the most efficient team in the nation, and have been for a while.
The goldilocks zone is a bit smaller this week. Only 8 teams made this great list, and most of them happen to be in the top ten. Ohio State (should be ranked #1 in my book), Clemson, Penn State, Georgia, Utah (ah yeah!), Auburn, Notre Dame and Iowa. The lone golden star this week is Alabama, with a #2 ranking and a #2 rating.
I mentioned earlier in the season that I was hoping to see Utah’s efficiency climb, which it certainly has, especially on defense, which is nearing a rating of 90 (fifth overall). The offense has now surpassed 80 (eighth overall). Special teams is the dead-weight that is keeping Utah’s overall efficiency from being higher due to a 114 overall rating. Yep, it’s bad. At least it isn’t Arizona bad who is 130, which is dead last for those of you keeping track. But it is still really bad. If a certain kicker and punter were still around, Utah would probably be sitting around fourth or fifth overall.
I got a lot more I could talk about today, but this has to end some time.