Tusk to Tail 2014: Blah, blah, blah, predictions, blah, blah and alcohol. Especially alcohol
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Saturday could be the last football win for the Hogs in the 2014 season, and would give the team a better record than the previous season. Until Bielema-ball is cranking on all cylinders, such sad realities are what keep the Tusk to Tail crew motivated. And alcohol. Especially alcohol.
If you are playing for the Razorbacks, you need a coach. If rooting for the Razorbacks, you require a bartender.
There are not many unbeaten teams left in the Power 5 conferences, so this changes every week. Which four teams go to the first college football playoffs, and who wins the championship?
Right now I’d guess that the first championship playoff will have Florida State, Michigan State, Georgia (you read that correctly), and Kansas State. Much to the chagrin of everyone in the SEC, Michigan State wins it all.
It still looks like Florida State will win out, followed up with three once-beatens. Those three are Oregon, Michigan State and Mississippi State, though Ole Miss could make it as well.
My four teams are somewhat democratic. I'll take Mississippi State as my #1. They look the scariest by far this year. #2 is Florida State by default. They don't look impressive, even after Notre Dame. #3 is Oregon. They should have control over the PAC 12. #4 is Michigan State. Numbers 2 through 4 could have two losses easily in the SEC, but that's a different discussion.
Florida State, as long as they stay undefeated, seems like a lock. The Big 12 may have played their way out, while the Pac 12 and Big 10 are back in. I’ll take Oregon and Michigan State, there. The SEC rep is a suddenly resurgent Georgia team that will upset the weary winner of the West in the SEC Championship Game.
Mississippi State, Florida State, Georgia, Oregon. Mississippi State wins it.
Florida State seems like a lock to make the playoff, so I will pick them as the eventual National Champion. As for the rest, it’s impossible to say who has the advantage for the following reasons: SEC West is THE major player in the playoff hunt and too much is undecided with Miss State, Ole Miss, Auburn and Alabama. It is impossible to tell who has the advantage. Michigan State, Notre Dame and Oregon all look the same with one loss. Finally, there are lots of football left, with ample time for upsets.
Florida State, Mississippi State, Georgia, and Notre Dame. I really have no idea.
• Alabama-Birmingham @ Arkansas
Arkansas bounces back and dominates UAB 49-10.
Arkansas still makes mistakes, but plays well enough to beat UAB 34-20 on a beautiful Saturday in the Ozarks. BA has a 200-yard day and Alex Collins runs for 123 yards.
Arkansas rolls UAB by 21+. I'd like to see the boys get some confidence back.
UAB was able to score 34 points on the Mississippi State defense, so the Hogs can’t afford to sleepwalk through this game. I expect Arkansas to physically dominate UAB on both sides of the ball. Arkansas continues to take care of the non-conference teams on the schedule. Arkansas 42 UAB 17.
The Razorbacks did not play Bielema-ball last week, committing far too many penalties and turnovers. We return to form this week and take our frustrations out on our non-conference opponent, 55-17.
Hogs bounce back in this game. It'll be tighter than people like, but UAB is a good team. We protect Brandon Allen by running the ball a bunch, and Alex Collins shakes off the doldrums and goes for 100+ yards. Hogs win 27-21.
Arkansas finally gets a scheduling break and a much needed win.
Can the SEC let UAB join the conference for one day so the Hogs can end this never- ending conference losing streak? Hogs 38-17.
• #20 Southern Cal @ # 19 Utah
USCw travels to Utah to take on the 6-1 Utes. Since suffering two early season losses, USC has bounced back and is in good form. Expect USC to pull off the win, garnering some media attention in the process. USC wins 49-35.
I hate Southern Cal, but can't pick a Ute either. If I lived out west, I might actually care about this evenly matched game. Utah crowd will be ready, but USC barely gets it done.
Who cares? Utes 28-24.
• South Carolina @ #5 Auburn
The Gus Bus has more athletes than the old ball coach. Aubbie still has a dog in the hunt and Carolina seems beat for the year. Maybe SC plays with pride, but I haven't seen it. War Eagle beats 'em by 14.
Both teams had a scheduling break even though SC played last week. When in doubt, pick the west. Auburn.
The only thing interesting about this game will be Spurrier’s postgame press conference. Aubbie 37-17.
• #4 Alabama @ Tennessee
Tennessee vs Lane Kiffin … err… I mean Alabama will be interesting to see if ESPN2 keeps a dump button ready for the microphones that are around the field during a televised game. If the Tennessee Chancellor thought he needed to send a letter to the student body for chants which could be heard on air when they lost to Florida, what in the world are the students going to say when Lane comes back into town? Alabama destroyed A&M last week, and opened as a 15.5 point favorite playing in Neyland Stadium. Alabama has won the last seven in this series. With the loss to Ole Miss three weeks ago plus the near loss to Arkansas, Alabama knows it cannot afford any slip if it wants to win the SEC. Alabama 52, Tennessee 13. Keep the ear muffs ready for the children.
Tennessee is much like Arkansas this year: improved, but not good enough. Alabama.
Lane Kiffin returns to Knoxville. They may hang him. Bama 35-14.
• #3 Ole Miss @ # 24 LSU
Ole Miss wins.
Can LSU blow two night games at home to the Mississippi schools? In the year of the Egg, anything is possible. Ole Miss in a close one.
Is it time for Cinderella’s fairytale to come to an end? No better place than Death Valley. No, who am I kidding? The Ole Miss defense should handle this LSU “offense” with no problem. And I still want Ole Miss to come in to Razorback Stadium undefeated. Ole Miss 34-13.
• #1 Mississippi State @ Kentucky
I just don’t see how Kentucky keeps up with Mississippi State in this game. The Wildcat defense has given up 36, 38 and 41 points in SEC play. Dak Prescott has a huge day and continues to impress Heisman trophy voters. MSU 34, UK 14.
If State stumbles, it will be at Ole Miss or Alabama, not Kentucky.
Who would ever think this game would be the CBS 2:30 game of the week? This game could be interesting since it’s in Kentucky. Dawgs too strong. Dawgs 41-24.
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