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College Football - Unbeatens Hope to Challenge Miami

By Piet Van Leer
Wednesday, October 2nd, 2002
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I must have been drunk, because I could have sworn I saw Rutgers beating Tennessee ... by a touchdown ... at halftime ... in Knoxville! Yes, the Scarlet Knights were leading the vaunted Volunteers and their checkerboard end zones for a half an hour! After being humiliated by Florida at home the week prior, I'm not sure how imposing the Knoxville visit will be for the Miami Hurricanes. Which makes me wonder ... will anyone beat the 'Canes?

Virginia Tech would like to try. They remain undefeated, and have tagged Marshall at home and A&M on the road. But it will be tough for the Hokies to upset the mighty 'Canes in their familiar confines. So unless the Hokies pull off the impossible, the rest of the candidates to face Miami for the title will try to sort themselves out over the rest of the season.

Elsewhere, Texas wants to know why they get no love from the NY Times computer. Although they're ranked second in both major polls, the Abacus has the Longhorns at No. 29! Maybe the computer slight will give Chris Simms to extra motivation to finally win an important game. That could happen in two weeks vs. the Sooners, who look to unseat Texas from their No. 2 perch and claim it for themselves.

Georgia started slow, but survived. And now they appear to be catching their breath just in time. They get Tennessee at home, face Florida in the World's Largest Cocktail Party, and have to go on the road to Auburn. If they can manage to stay undefeated through the SEC Championship game, an invitation will be virtually assured unless Texas or Oklahoma remains undefeated.

What about Oregon? They're still undefeated, and have to face every Pac-10 giant over the remainder of the season (UCLA, USC, Washington, Washington State, and Oregon State). If they can make it undefeated through that traffic, how can you keep them out? Unless the "East Coast conspiracy" is validated again this year.

Which is where Ohio State comes in. They're in the East. They have tradition. So even if they're not totally back, everyone wants them to be. They still have Wisconsin, Penn State, and Michigan left, but have looked impressive enough early on. Can they be kept out if they go undefeated? On a side note, any volunteers to officiate at Beaver Stadium? The refs were verbally assaulted by alum LaVar Arrington to the point that he had to be removed, and papa bear Joe Paterno allegedly grabbed one around the neck after a controversial decision!

Lastly, who could forget about the old Blue and Gold? If the pollsters want any team rejuvenated from the dead, it would be the Domers. Notre Dame, more than any other school, holds the tradition card. Hell, even the Times computer has them ranked No. 1! So if they manage to beat both the FSU Seminoles and Trojans on the road, they will be in the title game.

One sleeper out there is the N.C. State Wolfpack. They are still undefeated, and have an easier schedule than ever team mentioned prior. The only hiccup would be FSU, who they get at home on the 23rd of November.

So Florida State is the key. They still play half of the contenders mentioned above, so therefore can ruin half a dozen seasons. Personally, I'm hoping everybody goes unbeaten so the BCS can be blown straight to hell.

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