Steveo’s Salvos – October 23

Michigan State acame out smelling like "Roses" after last week's last second win over Michigan.  They play Ohio State at The Shoe on November 21.

Michigan State came out smelling like “Roses” after last week’s last second win over Michigan. They play Ohio State at The Shoe on November 21.

What we thought looked like a great game before the season with some significance to the bearing on the College Football Playoff, now looks like a game where No. 9 Florida State (6-0) seems to be an overwhelming favorite over a struggling 2-5 Georgia Tech. We liked Tech returning QB Justin Thomas operating HC Paul Johnson’s triple option when we saw lead Tech over Mississippi State in last year’s Orange Bowl victory along with a pretty solid defense returning. We selected Tech as our dark horse as one of our final four picks for the CFP. After two lopsided wins over nobodies to open the season, the Jackets fell at Notre Dame and have continued to slide downhill since. All we look forward to now on the field is a shot at seeing a major upset. ND transfer QB Everett Golson and RB Dalvin Cook bring the Seminole offense for our first trip to Bobby Dodd Stadium. We look forward to tailgating and seeing a game at a stadium we’ve only seen from the outside on non-game days. We will see if Johnson can get his offense charged up for a spoiler roll against the Seminoles. A sixth loss here for GT will make it difficult to get the Ramblin’ Wreck to earn a bowl again this year. We attended their last two the last two as we saw Tech fall to Ole Miss in the Music City before their big win last year in Miami…Here’s a first for us. In the middle of the season, we’ve decided to schedule a bye weekend! The primary reason is to assure that our game on November 21 is still going to officially be our 500th game as planned. The second is that no game at any level of NCAA football within reach for us on November 7th really stirs our interest. We’ve probably been spoiling ourselves recently with some competitive matchups between major teams or teams we really wanted to see play. In the meantime, we were looking at several Treats rather than Tricks available for us on Halloween, October 31. We got a ticket for the Notre Dame at Temple game that’s sold out. Who’d have “thunk” it? They finally announced the kickoff at 8 pm. We originally had our eye on South Florida at Navy to see the Mids play in an American Athletic Conference game for the first time and to see if Navy QB Keenan Reynolds can add some more points in pursuit of Montee Ball’s career scoring record of 500 points. The kickoff between the Mids and the Bulls is at noon. Called our Navy friend Brian Donnelly to figure out the tailgate plan and he has an extra ticket to boot. Should be a great double header. As for November 7, the lawn will need to be raked (Oh joy!), the recycling center has a free hazardous material collection, I’ve got to get rid of some old paint stuff, and there are a few good games on the tube we want to see – Navy at Memphis, LSU at Alabama – with my friends Evan Williams and Jeremiah Weed. I can also take a Sunday off from game reporting. And the following week, we make our first trip west of the Mississippi since the Fiesta Bowl on January 1, 2011 when we go to see games in Boulder and Colorado Springs for the first time. Can’t wait! With this plan, Rutgers at Army is o as Game # 500…The Top 25 keep popping up on our schedule and that’s before we even consider some of the bowl games that we’re targeting. As of this week, we have No. 1 Ohio State on 11/28 at No. 15 Michigan; No. 7 Michigan State defeated Rutgers in a close one on October 10, 31-24; No. 9 Florida State is on tap this weekend; No. 11 Notre Dame the following weekend visits No. 22 Temple at the Linc; No. 19 Toledo will be hosting Western Michigan on November 27; and No. 24 Duke we saw dismantle Army two weeks ago, 44-3. Of these eight ranked teams, five are still undefeated…Last weekend, the teams on our schedule that played won 14 of 21 games. Of note, Washington State keeps surprising at 4-2 and defeated Oregon and Oregon State on consecutive Saturdays. Utah State defeated Boise State, 52-26. USC is now 3-3. Colorado could give them a challenge when we see them meet on November 13…Nobody else is saying it, but all I can say about Steve Spurrier is that he’s a “quitter”. He says he’s not done and he’ll be coaching again somewhere. Didn’t he do the same thing when he left the Washington Reskins? When the chips are down, he left behind the guys he chose to play for him. When he figured he couldn’t do anything to help them, he ran away and figures he’ll coach someplace else even if it’s at the high school level. He should have stuck it out with his players until at least the end of this season. He’s not having any medical issues. It seems it’s just about him. No commitment to the players he recruited to help them turn tough times around so he’ll just leave. Wouldn’t want to be in the proverbial “fox hole” with him… Penn State is 5-2 and unimpressive thus far. The only “positive” thing that can be said is that their losses are to two undefeated teams – Ohio State and surprisingTemple…Temple defeated East Carolina Thursday evening to reach their first 7-0 record in the history of their program. They got by ECU late to win 24-14 to enter the game versus Notre Dame undefeated… Army beat Bucknell, 21-14. They should consider joining the the Patriot League to play football. They are 1-1 versus this group with their 37-35 opening loss to Fordham…Georgia Tech lost their fifth in a row in a 31-28 loss to Pitt who’s on the rise under former Michigan State DC Pat Narduzzi…FSU beat Louisville last week, 41-21, who’s struggling under returned HC Bobby Petrino. Good…We said that the American Athletic would have some teams ranked in the Top 25 suddenly and three jumped in last weekend. The most impressive was Memphis’s win over Ole Miss. Houston and Temple won and followed them up in the polls as well. We still say that Navy has a chance at beating any of these. The schedule is for the AAC sets up well to see some important conference match-ups as the regular season winds down…Among category leaders we’ve seen play this year, Washington State’s QB Luke Falk is fifth in the nation in passing yards with 2,371 yards. DE Carl Nassib of Penn State leads the nation in sacks with 15. Top rushers include top Heisman candidate Leonard Fournette of LSU who we saw play in last year’s Music City Bowl against Notre Dame leading all rushers with 1,202 yards. Ezekiel Elliott of Ohio State follows with 988 yards and is gearing up for upcoming games against Michigan State and Michigan. Dalvin Cook of Florida State comes in third with 955 yards and we will see him add to his total against Georgia Tech this weekend. … Some notes on the two MAC teams we will see play the night before Ohio State vs. Michigan: No 19 Toledo is 6-0 will play three consecutive Tuesdays before we see them play on a Friday night. On 11/ 3 they host Northern Illinois, followed by Tuesday road trips to Central Michigan and Bowling Green. That sucks for the team and for its fans. What parents, students, and alumni of Toledo can make it to those games to root for the Rockets? We agree with statements made by Arizona HC Rich Rodriguez. How do they expect student-athletes to attend to their studies during a semester when they schedule games like this? Articles are also written about dwindling college football attendance, here’ a major part of that problem. It’s obviously all about the TV money. College football was created for Saturday afternoons, not prime time television in front of sparse crowds. As for Western Michigan currently 3-3, two losses were against Ohio State and Michigan State…In the FCS, 5-1 Jacksonville State remains at No. 1 buoyed by their overtime loss to fading FBS Auburn. Coastal Carolina remains No. 2 at 6-0, 2014 runner-up Illinois State at 5-1 falls in at No. 3, and undefeated James Madison (7-0) of the Colonial Athletic is No. 4. Three time defending champ North Dakota State (4-2) is ranked 8th, but the FCS saving grace is that there’s a 24-team playoff system. South Dakota defeated the Bison last week, 24-21. Former Bison HC Craig Bohl coached his Wyoming Cowboys to their first win of the season last week, 28-21, over Nevada. JMU hosts Game Day this weekend playing against No. 11 in-state rival Richmond (5-1) this Saturday. We expect the Dukes of Harrisburg to throttle the Spiders who haven’t played anybody with a winning record yet. Hopefully we’ll get to see them JMU play in their cool-looking stadium down their off I-81 in an FCS playoff game this season…Fordham (6-1) lost its only game to floundering Villanova, 14-7. The Cats, despite an injury that took out starting QB John Robertson earlier this season, still ranks at No. 23 with a 3-3 record. No. 14 Portland State (5-1) defeated FBS Washington State (4-2) in its season opener. In the Ivy League, No. 15 Harvard (5-0) and No. 25 Dartmouth (5-0) are on a collision course on Friday October 30 when they meet in Cambridge for what could be for the Ivy League title. They make it so easy to determine a champion in the Ancient Eight in such a short, clear-cut season. Just wish they could get the approval of their Presidents to join in the FCS playoffs. It would be fun to see what they could do… Penn took it out on former Head Coach Al Bagnoli’s new team as they crushed Columbia, 42-7… In D-3, Mt. Union is No. 1 with 19 votes. New NJAC teams clobbered old traditional ones as Wesley killed Kean, 56-14, and Salisbury State wrecked William Patterson, 62-33. No. 4 Wesley hosts No. 21 Rowan (5-1) this weekend in a key conference game…Wisconsin –Whitewater, No. 6 at 6-1, may have faltered off the pace, but in the meantime former HC Lance Leipold’s Buffalo Bulls took a hit last week in their 51-14 loss to Central Michigan. Prior to that, they were losing close ones in competitive games. The team stands at 2-4, but there seems to be progress being made up there in Buffalo under the six-time D-3 championship coach…

About Steveo

This website is dedicated to my unique and ongoing adventure to continue to see every major Division 1A (I despise the moniker “FBS”) football team play in person at least once. I’ve seen all 124 teams in existence as of 2013 play and plan to attend games with the five newest editions in the next few years. This also records my ongoing adventures attending as many college football games as possible every season. I “officially” started this crazy goal in 1979. The upcoming 2014 season will be the 35th straight year of sharing this fun endeavor with others in person and through weekly reviews about each game I attend. Entering 2014, I have attended 459 NCAA football games at all levels. My book, Tales from the Tailgate: From the Fan who’s seen ’em all! published in 2011, tells my story over 30 years of when I attended a game in person played by each D1A team for the first time. Now, I haven’t attended a game at every major stadium on each campus (yet) because I’d probably be unemployed and definitely divorced by now. However, I’m proud to report that I remain gainfully employed and have been married to the same woman (“Saint Laurie”) for almost 25 years. We have two kids that have recently ventured away from our home in Byram Township, NJ over the last few few years. Our daughter Alex is a junior at the University of South Carolina (Go Gamecocks!), and our son Eric is now enlisted in the United States Navy (Go Navy!). You will find that my site and my book focus on enjoying a passion for college football and great opportunities to have fun with friends and family around the country.

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