This Saturday treats us to another installment of Alabama’s win-or-die national championship ambitions. Today is against a team that it has tended to play poorly against of late, in a place where the Tide have struggled since the 2012 expansion: At Texas A&M, in College Station. For both teams, this is a natty elimination match, after Aggie dropped a game on the road to a rebuilt Miami team, and ‘Bama lost at home to superior Texas squad.
Overall, it’s a lighter week for big games after last Saturday’s bonanza. But there are still plenty of meaningful tilts, and some real under the radar bangers:
- Undefeated No. 13 Washington State travels to a very dangerous 1-loss UCLA, where the Bruins have one of the nation’s best defenses. Does the Cougar dream die in the Rose Bowl? Have we all been sleeping on UCLA?
- Battle of unbeatens in Athens, where a frankly unimpressive No. 1 Georgia team hosts the No. 20 5-0 Kentucky Wildcats under the lights. UK has barely left the state, and has honestly played no one of quality. UGA hasn’t either, for that matter. And they’ve looked worse getting to 5-0. One of these guys is a fraud. Let’s find out who.
- Keep an eye on No. 23 LSU in CoMo vs. the No. 19 Missouri Tigers. MU has been under the radar, but Luther Burden is rejuvenating the Tiger passing game, and the defense has been nasty as-advertised. LSU has no such luxury: Their defense has been smoked by FSU and Ole Miss. This wasn’t how the season was supposed to pan out. Another loss puts BK and crew at .500 in a year where they allegedly had national title aspirations. Will they survive? Is Missouri just another flash-in-the-pan Eastern team that’s feasted on bad competition?
- PEW PEW! The Red River Shootout at the Texas State Fairgrounds, in a battle of unbeatens for the first time in a decade. The No. 6 Longhorns are a known quantity, and have had their trial by fire. The No. 12 Sooners are a bit of an unknown, having faced far worse competition. Are the Dirt Burglars back? Are the ‘Horns actually just as good as they seem? Which program emerges from their crucible?
- No. 10 Notre Dame travels to No. 25 Louisville, where both of these ACC foes have been escaping teams by the skin of their teeth — but the Domers have done it against against two ranked teams, and barely dropped a decision to No. 3 Ohio State. UL is dicking around with teams like Georgia Tech. Does Brohm bring his alma mater full circle back to prominence?
- Keep an eye on Syracuse at No. 10 UNC — the Orange a very solid team, and if the Tarheels are looking ahead, they can drop this game very easily.
- USC can’t look ahead to their next two weeks vs. Utah and Notre Dame; the dangerous Arizona Wildcats passing attack comes to town. Not that ‘Zona is a good team, but the USC secondary is straight garbage.
- How will Arkansas respond after getting blasted by Aggie last week? How will the Ole Miss Rebels fare after their thrilling 4th Quarter rally vs. rival LSU? Some coach is leaving this game with a hot seat. Fortunately for Lane, he’s at home.
That and more: Here’s your complete schedule for Week 6. All times are in Heathen Eastern.
Have a great morning, and Roll Tide!