2nd Take: Week 1 of College Football
Alright. Alright. Alright. The long awaited and heavily anticipated 2015 college football season has finally begun. Week 1 is finally in the books, and after watching the games this weekend there is plenty to talk about. Now, I’ll be honest I don’t like to place too much (if any) weight on the first week of the season, but based off of what we’ve seen thus far; this is what we learned:
1. Alabama is still Alabama.
Once again, I don’t believe in placing too much weight or emphasis on week one of the college football season, but that being said Alabama looked good. Alabama manhandled another overrated BIG 10 team that is obviously has no idea what to do without Melvin Gordon. Bama looked like they always look. They still have a dominating defense lead by one of, if not the deepest defensive line in college football. They still have that pro-style offense, led by a powerful offensive line and relentless running game. Nick Satan…..I mean Saban, is still pissed off all the time, and their Quarterback is still mediocre. Jacob Coker was the definition of a game manager Saturday night, hitting the easy passes, missing the long balls, and not turning the ball over. Overall, nothing’s changed, Bama is still Bama.
2. Ohio State is good
In the words of Dennis Green "They are who we thought they were." Ohio State dominated a completely outmatched and less than impressive Virginia Tech football team. Cardale Jones won the QB battle for the ages, and appears to have picked up right where he left off this past January. Braxton "the jack of all traits" Miller also looked really good at his new H-back position. Overall, the combination of talent and experience coupled with that "cupcake" BIG 10 schedule will undoubtedly place Ohio State in the College football playoff for a 2nd straight season.
3. Auburn/Jeremy Johnson Isn’t Who We Thought They Were
In arguably the most entertaining of the games this weekend (The battle of UGA transfers), Auburn looked very vulnerable and overrated. Yes, they won the game, but ugly wins do exist and this definitely qualified as one of them. I’ll begin by calling out all those nitwit’s that declared Jeremy Johnson as a Heisman trophy candidate this preseason before he had even started a game. Yes, body type and athletic ability wise "JJ" does look very similar to Cam Newton, but one quarter into the game Saturday and after you put some glasses on, it was evident this was obviously a mirage. Johnson looked horrible, throwing 3 (should’ve been 4) interceptions as well as his Heisman hopes to Todd Grantham’s Louisville defense. (On the other hand, Georgia’s former players looked pretty good in this game.) In all seriousness though, Will Muschamp’s defense did look really good, and is much improved from last season’s squad. But, if Auburn is to maintain any hope of doing anything significant this season, somebody needs to teach Jeremy Johnson how to read a defense.
4. Tennessee Band wagoner’s Beware
Tennessee has received a lot of hype this offseason, a little too much in my opinion. Yes, they have had 2 straight top 5 recruiting classes according to ESPN, but they have proven absolutely nothing on the field. They have won a combined 12 games, including only 1 over a top 25 opponent, over the past couple seasons. Their offense looked really good Saturday, but their defense, specifically their secondary, looked subpar. Last time I checked, Willie Martinez is still coaching that secondary, and if anyone watched UGA’s defensive in the late 2000’s, when he was DC there, they know that’s a problem. People also underestimate how much damage Derek Dooley did to this program. When you don’t sign a single offensive lineman in a recruiting class (Tennessee 2012), you’re going to have some problems. Butch Jones is a great recruiter (and would no doubt be an incredible used car salesman), but his performance as a coach on the football field is still up in the air.
5. Texas A&M Could Be The Best Team In The SEC
After watching the Texas A&M game Saturday night, I’ve bought into the hype. Texas A&M is not only a legit SEC title contender, but they are also a legitimate playoff contender. Their offense, which is always great, is loaded at the skill positions. Most people already thought that their WR core consisting of Ricky Seals-Jones, Speedy Noil, and Josh Reynolds (All of which were former 4 or 5 star prospects), was the deepest in football. Now, after spectacular freshman Christian Kirk, who looks like the next Percy Harvin, went off Saturday night, this WR group appears to be one of the deepest EVER. Guess whose throwing these guys the ball by the way? Kyle Allen, the former #1 QB in the country for 2014, started and looked great playing most of the game Saturday. Sprinkled in were glimpses of another freshman phenom by the name of Kyler Murray. Murray appears to be a scary combination of Michael Vick and Johnny Football, and will definitely see his role increased as the season continues. Their offense is scary good. But, A&M’s Achilles heel is usually their defense, which has abysmal over the years. Well, A&M found an answer on that side of the ball too. His name is John Chavis. The former Tennessee and LSU defensive coordinator has long been regarded as one of the best in the SEC and appears to have put an end to the Aggies defensive woes. The aggies defense was dominant Saturday producing NINE sacks, led by their two towering defensive ends Myles Garrett and Daeshon Hall, who are each over 6’5’’. I could keep talking about A&M for pages, but for everyone’s sake I’ll just stop here. In conclusion, A&M is dangerous, very dangerous….Kevin Sumlin and Johnny Manziel at a Rick Ross party dangerous.
6. TCU Will Be Fine
TCU didn’t look great Thursday night at Minnesota. Everyone needs to calm down though because they will be just fine. They traveled a long ways away from Fort Worth to play a pretty good Minnesota defense on a Thursday night for one of the first games of the college football season. If that isn’t the definition of adversity then I don’t know what is. They definitely didn’t play their best football, but as long as they’ve got Trevone Boykin and that defense led by Gary Patterson, they will be just fine.
7. Nick Chubb’s Heisman Campaign Is Off and Running
Georgia only played about 3 quarters Saturday in a seemingly insignificant game against UL Monroe. But, there was some significance that came from this game. For once Mark Richt didn’t pull a Mark Richt, and allowed his superstar to pad his stats against a lesser opponent. As a result, Nick Chubb rushed for over 100 yards for his 9th straight game. Only one other Georgia running back has ever accomplished that feat. His name? Herschel Walker. Herschel won the Heisman, will Chubb follow suit?