Tusk to Tail: Willard Grandview says Hogs lose to the Sharks/Bears/Rebels by four points
Two predictions have Arkansas over Ole Miss, with two having Ole Miss over the Hogs. While that may all be FAKE NEWS, one thing is for sure: No team from Fayetteville or Oxford will be anywhere near the college football playoffs.
Which 4 teams will make the playoffs, and who do you think will win the championship?
From a general fan perspective, we need at least one new team in the mix to keep people interested in college football. The playoff teams are: Clemson, Oklahoma, Georgia and my wildcard, LSU. The Tigers new OC, Joe Brady, may be the key to unlocking their potential. I’m sure the ESPN Suits are drooling over the idea of Alabama and Oklahoma meeting up with Tua and Jalen on opposite sides. However, too many new assistant coaches for Bama will cause them a stumble at some point. Clemson wins the national title again.
My way, way-too-early-playoffs-prediction is Clemson, Bama, OU, and Georgia.
Alabama, Clemson, Oklahoma, and Notre Dame. I don’t see anyone knocking them off, they have many returning starters and reloaded where they lost players. Going out on limb, OU wins it all over Alabama and Hurts gets the last laugh.
• Arkansas @ Ole Miss
Did you see the tweets on Saturday? Ole Miss starting quarterback Matt Corral had reportedly thrown his helmet at Head Coach Matt Luke after the Rebels lost to Memphis and told him he didn’t know what he was doing. (I wanted to do the same to Jeff Long after he fired Bobby Petrino!) Though it turned out to be FAKE NEWS, the fact that that rumor spread so widely said something about the state of the Ole Miss program – they’re young, inexperienced, and may not be pulling in the same direction. So, yes, this seems like a prime opportunity for the Razorbacks to go on the road and pick up Chad Morris’ first win in the SEC. But nothing I saw from the Hogs last weekend gives me confidence they’re ready to do that. At least not yet. Ole Miss 10, Arkansas 6.
I thought this game was winnable in the pre-season, but after watching the Hogs play Saturday against an FCS team, I’m not so sure. The Black Bear Rebel Landsharks get us at home and are hurting from a close loss to a good Memphis team. I just don’t think the blocking and the execution of the playbook will occur in this game week. Ole Miss 21, Arkansas 17.
Did anyone else read the twitter feeds after Ole Miss lost? Are their head coach and starting QB already having a lover’s quarrel? Arkansas’ O-line should be spending this week learning to hack into those two’s social media and start more drama! I’m hopeful we can get to 4, maybe 5 wins and Ole Miss can be our conference win to equal the last two year’s combined total. Here’s to hoping that the Rebs experience their own episode of Blue Mountain State this weekend! Arkansas 21, Ole Miss 18.
Morris did the typical “we ran a vanilla offense” speech. Arkansas fans were begging to see this famous Clemson offense Morris has talked about for two years, and we got nothing but a 3/4 empty stadium in the 3rd quarter after a lifeless performance by the offense. Our defense showed vast improvement, which was the only positive. We will see what he has been holding back and know the truth on where this team is by 10 Saturday night. I think we have to see Starkel in there to win this game. Hicks cannot throw downfield from what we have been told, so the Rebels will stack the box knowing that. With Starkel, at least we can spread the offense out and keep the defense on their toes. The Black Bears offense held a pretty good Memphis offense in check but their own offense was atrocious. No one really knows what to expect. Flip a coin and hope for the best. Total homer pick here, hoping for a W. Hogs over the Sharks 28-24.
• #25 Stanford @ USC
Unfortunately, both teams had injuries to their QBs: The Trojan’s JT Daniels tore his ACL Saturday during the Fresno State game, and Stanford’s KJ Costello took a hard hit against Northwestern. Compounding matters for the Cardinal was the leg injury to left tackle and possible top 10 NFL pick, Walker Little. The line is USC by 2.5. Southern Cal’s new OC Graham Harrell will have the next QB ready. USC 17, Stanford 14.
• #24 Nebraska @ Colorado
This will be a great game to watch. Both teams can put up a lot of points, and they really don’t like each other. Nebraska is slightly favored, but I’m giving the edge to Colorado, if for no other reason than that is where my son went to Law School. Colorado 42, Nebraska 41.
• #6 LSU @ #10 Texas
LSU vs. Texas is a fascinating matchup of a program I’ve despised my whole life and a program I’ve despised since the early 90s. I’d take Tom Hermannnnn over Coach O generally speaking, but this weekend I’ll take LSU’s toughness over the Longhorn’s privilege. LSU 31, Texas 25
Texas is back, supposedly. After they beat Georgia in the bowl game last year, that’s all we heard until spring. This game has “classic” written all over it. I expect a back and forth game between these two heavyweights, and the loser might be knocked out of playoff contention already. You really can’t expect the Tigers to go undefeated in the SEC. In the end, LSU’s massive defensive front makes the plays in the 4th quarter to win this one. Bayou Bengals 30-24. But if Texas wins, we will hear Texas is back until our ears bleed.
• Cincinnati @ #5 Ohio State
Cincinnati Coach Luke Fickell spent half the summer calling his old cronies at Ohio State trying to get the best dirt on his old stomping grounds as a coach. Even with the Buckeyes’ coaching changes, they’ll out-athlete the Bearcats this Saturday. Buckeyes 42, Bearcats 24.
• #12 Texas A&M @ #1 Clemson
Look for a good game here. The Texas A&M defense upgraded the Secondary, and QB Kellen Mond has improved his throwing motions to give him a better deep ball and more zip. Clemson is still going to be too much at home. Clemson 31, TAMU 24.
A&M started off slow against the Tigers last year, getting down 21-6 but was a 2-point conversion away from tying it late. They have to get off to a hot start to have a chance in this one, and the good news is they the athleticism and the QB to do just that. Clemson is favored by a whopping 17.5 points. It seems way high. Mond is going to make the plays to keep the Aggies in it for most of the game and keep it interesting. In the end you know Trevor Lawrence will be the stud he is and be the difference. He’s just that good. Tigers win in the other Death Valley 34-25.
Editor’s note: Now in its eighth year, Tusk to Tail is the sport of tailgating as organized, performed and perfected by a group of Hog fans who have been tailgating together sober and otherwise for more than a decade. The primary focus of Tusk to Tail will be to follow the Hogs through the fans’ perspective with their insightful, irreverent, smart-alecky and sometimes practical style. Tusk to Tail sponsors are the Arkansas Lottery Scholarship program and Turn Key Construction Management. The diehards may also be followed on their Facebook page. Or follow the crew on Twitter and Instagram, all @TuskToTail.