3 College Football Teams on Upset Alert in Week 11
We may look back on the 2015 college football season and say that week 10 was the craziest weekend of them all.
Eight top-25 teams lost last week. Five out of those eight teams lost to an unranked opponent. If you missed any of the action, here is a quick rundown for you:
- Nebraska knocked off Michigan State 39-38, but it was not without controversy. The Cornhuskers' receiver that caught the game-winning touchdown pass stepped out of bounds before he caught the pass. However, the touchdown stood after review.
- Oklahoma State routed TCU in route to a 49-29 win.
- Memphis had trouble defending the triple option, and Navy took full advantage. The Midshipmen defeated the Tigers, 45-20.
- In the wildest finish of the weekend, Arkansas used a lateral pass to convert a 4th and 25 against Ole Miss. The Razorbacks converted on a two-point conversion attempt in overtime and beat the Rebels, 53-52.
- Auburn looked like a brand new team on the road in College Station as they knocked off Texas A&M, 26-10.
Week 10 is going to be a touch act to follow., but week 11 does have the potential to be just as wild especially if any of these three teams fall. Keep in mind, all three teams we had on upset alert last week lost.
**Note: All stats, unless otherwise noted, are courtesy of cfbstats.com**
Florida was almost a victim to a major upset last Saturday, but the Gators survived and clinched the SEC East in the process. Now they must survive a trip to Columbia if they plan on keeping their potential playoff hopes alive.
Last weekend's close call with Vanderbilt is the primary reason behind the decision to put Florida on upset alert this week. The Gators turned the ball over four times and had just 258 yards of offense against the Commodores. Numbers like this are definitely a concern when going on the road to face a team that forces a lot of turnovers.
A South Carolina win over Florida wouldn't normally be considered an upset. The Gamecocks did not meet this year's expectations, which eventually led to Steve Spurrier's midseason resignation. Interim coach Shawn Elliot has filled in nicely and has helped this team improve each week. South Carolina has come close to pulling off a few upsets already, losing the past two games by a combined 20 points. Could this be the week that they finally pull one off and against their biggest opponent yet?
If there is one thing we know it's that Florida cannot afford to play poorly in Columbia even if the Gamecocks have struggled this season. The Gators are going to Atlanta no matter what, but they can kiss the playoff goodbye if they drop this game.
Refocusing after a grueling loss is a difficult thing to do. LSU will be faced with the challenge of bouncing back against a conference rival it has struggled with in the past.
There is also a very good chance that LSU plays inspired in this week's game due to last week's loss to Alabama. The offense should get back on track, and Leonard Fournette will probably run for over 100 yards. However, the Tigers may be put to the test on defense. Arkansas is averaging over 56 points per game across its last three games. Quarterback Brandon Allen has thrown 12 touchdown passes in those three games. Needless to say, LSU will be challenged through the air.
It should go without saying that the Razorbacks will also have their hands full on defense because they will have to slow down Fournette. Arkansas has allowed an SEC leading 21 rushing touchdowns to opponents. That stat alone probably has Fournette licking his chops. The same can be said about Brandon Harris, who is going up against a pass defense that is ranked dead last in the conference. However, the numbers do not always tell the full tale. Arkansas is very much capable of getting the job done on defense.
LSU is 4-3 in their last seven meetings with Arkansas. Only one of those victories was won by double-digits. In other words, this game has a history of being close.
In recent years, Oregon has been put on upset alert when facing Stanford, but this year that scenario is flipped. The Ducks could very well be the team that ruins Stanford's chances to make the playoffs.
Oregon leads the PAC-12 in total offense, but they are dead last in total defense. That statistic alone pretty much sums up their season. The Ducks have always been known for their fast paced, spread offense and that's exactly what makes them dangerous. They may struggle to rack up their usual yards against a tough Stanford defense, but it can also be said that Stanford has not faced an offense with this capability.
It would not be a surprise at all if this game turned into a shootout between two high powered offenses. Oregon may be flashier (with both their offenses and their uniforms), but the Ducks do not have a Christian McCaffrey. McCaffrey has 1,207 rushing yards, 325 passing yards, and even 28 passing yards. The problem with having having a superstar is that the offense may fall apart if that guy is shut down (ex. Leonard Fournette).
The PAC-12 is probably the most unpredictable power-5 conference, which is exactly why we comfortable saying that Oregon is very much capable of pulling off the upset on the road despite having a poor defense. The chances of pulling the upset will increase exponentially if they shutdown McCaffrey.