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College Football Monday – Week 5
Team of the Week: Georgia
Players of the Week
Offense: QB Aaron Murray - Georgia
Defense: DE Shayon Green - Miami
Upcoming Game of the Week: Ohio St (5-0) at Northwestern (4-0)
Southern Cal Fires HC Lane Kiffin
Southern Cal Athletic Director Pat Haden fired HC Lane Kiffin after an embarrassing 62-41 loss to Arizona St. The loss left the Trojans at 3-2 in the early action and only 4-7 over the last 11 games. That includes so-so wins over Hawaii and Utah St. His 10-8 record the past two seasons was done with basically his recruits while his marginal early success were players recruited by prior HC Pete Carroll.
Kiffin has been one of the youngest head coaches at his recent stops with the Oakland Raiders, Tennessee University prior to Southern Cal. All three tenures were a disaster especially with the Raiders where he proved he was over his head especially with people skills. He battled with legendary Raider owner Al Davis that led to an abrupt firing. His short tenure at Tennessee was a disgrace where he openly lied to UT officials and left abruptly in year two for the Southern Cal position.
His immaturity and arrogant attitude alienated many USC officials and alumni, not to mention the media in general and many at prior coaching stops. He is the perfect example of nepotism at high levels. He has been a self-promoted job hoppin coach whose success was marginal at best. His past three positions leave some serious questions about his ability to coach and motivate athletes. His lies at Tennessee did serious damage to one of the premier college programs in the nation.
His poor performance and maturity with the Raiders left a lingering negative image with NFL personnel men, though in a sport mired in nepotism, he will probably surface as an offensive coordinator or QB coach with some pro club.
2013 Season Insight:
Alabama drilled a young Ole Miss squad with a 25-0 shutout that keeps them as the #1 club in all the polls. Ole Miss is an up and coming program but was not able to handle the physical Bama team that can beat a club on all levels. The Tide might cruise into the LSU game on Nov. 9th undefeated with marginal challenges on their schedule. They could be headed to a showdown with Georgia in the SEC title game if both clubs continue their strong performances.
Georgia won a dramatic 44-41 shootout with LSU with QB Aaron Murray putting his signature on a major win for the program in a critical SEC matchup. Murray lead a game winning drills with 1:47 to play to defeat the unbeaten Tigers in a classic contest. Both QB Murray and LSU QB Zach Mettenberger put on a clinic matchup drive after drive until the former passer closed it out for the Bulldogs’ victory.
Georgia has the roster to beat the champion Bama team especially if they meet later in the season after their young defense can gain valuable experience. The Bulldog’s opening game loss to Clemson will hang over their head, though they are capable of running the table into the SEC title game. That can put them in a major bowl matchup and possible rematch with Clemson for national honors.
Wisconsin lost a tough game at Ohio St at 31-24 with a last second first half TD pass that was the ultimate difference. The Badgers young defense failed in critical spots that enabled the Buckeyes to get over a major hurdle in the Big Ten. They face an undefeated Northwestern club that enters the toughest part of their Big Ten schedule. This may be the biggest game in Evanston, Il in over a decade. The Wildcats have had good seasons recently, but continually fail in key Big Ten matchups.
Stanford faces a major test vs Washington at home this week in a contest of unbeaten before they face their toughest run vs Pac 12 opponents. Their young offense has gained valuable experience entering the strong midseason schedule. They look like a club building with each game and still have a month before battling Oregon at home in early November. The Stanford-Washington clash is one of three games this weekend of undefeated teams with Northwestern vs Ohio St and Florida St vs Maryland the others.
Upset of the Week – Utah knocks UCLA from the unbeaten ranks this Saturday.
Frank Coyle is a long time member of the FWAA and voter in College player awards - Heisman, Outland, Nagurski, Lombardi, Thorpe etc for the past 20 years. He writes ‘College Football Mondays’ weekly during the season. He is a longtime scouting consultant for the Senior Bowl, the nation’s premier postseason All-star game. He does sports radio shows for ESPN, CBS Sports, Fox Sports and Sporting News on a year round basis related to College Football especially during the postseason team and All-star Bowl time. He has worked for CBS Sports, NBC Sports, Yahoo and Rivals sports publications and web sites.