It’s A Week To Be Thankful For College Football

Thanksgiving week means it’s time to gore ourselves–but not on turkey and pumpkin pie! We’re talking about college football, and specifically this week’s rivalry week games. While other huge rivalries like Texas and Oklahoma or USC and UCLA are played out during other times of the season, this week gives us the opportunity to unabashedly wear our jerseys out to the store (or for more laxed environments, work) and have conversations with fans of the other team on how much their team, rich with history and tradition, isn’t good. Here’s a list of games we’re going to watch this weekend while our DVR works overtime recording the rest.

Auburn and Alabama (Alabama leads this series 40–33–1)
The annual Iron Bowl has a lot of intrigue surrounding it—and we’re not just talking about the players in the news. Auburn has already punched its ticket to the SEC Championship game against South Carolina. A loss to Alabama won’t prevent that, but it would put a huge damper in their quest for a national title. We’re sure that’s something Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban would love to be thankful for this holiday season.

Notre Dame at USC (Notre Dame leads series 42-33-5)
USC lack of bowl eligibility and Notre Dame’s uneven season has pulled some of the glitz and glamour out of the proceedings. But even that can’t pull us away. We’re interested to see how Notre Dame’s first-year coach Brian Kelley handles the pressure of trying to “Beat ‘SC.” While USC’s Lane Kiffin is also in his first year as coach, at least he’s been there before, as a coordinator under Pete Carroll.

Mississippi State and Mississippi (Ole Miss leads the series 60–40–6)
Known as the Battle of the Golden Egg–or Egg Bowl–a golden egg has been awarded to the winner since 1927. All we know is that lately the losers have had plenty of egg on their faces as in the past two years the winning squad has crossed the 40-point plateau, with the 2008 41-0 drubbing of MSU surely not out of their memories yet.

Michigan and Ohio State (Michigan leads the series 57-43-6)
One of football’s greatest rivalries, this contest transcends the actual game. This week, students from both schools will compete in banner contests, food drives and blood drives. That last one is fitting considering Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez is 0-2 against the Buckeyes, so if it goes to 0-3, everyone in Ann Arbor will be asking for blood, too.

Which games do you think we’ll be missing out on? Let us know in the comments!

Top College Football Teams to Watch in 2008

Well, I’ve held out long enough.  It is time to look at my picks for the best college football teams to watch in 2008.  Each of the teams mentioned here is going to be one of the top competitors in the nation this season – you can take my word for it.  This is going to be a spectacular season, and I cannot stress enough the amount of talent that goes into these football programs.

1. Georgia Bulldogs
The Bulldogs are looking strong heading into the 2008 season, and are hoping to repeal a botched attempt at a national title in 2007.  The Bulldogs have a beefy, complete roster, a Heisman hopeful in Knowshon Moreno, and a knack for making big plays when it counts.  The Bulldogs are ranked #1 in the Coaches Poll heading into the season, and in my opinion, as long as the Bulldogs play some football and forget about the hype around the team, they are going to win it all this season.  Defensive tackle Jeff Owens said it in his own words: “I’d prefer to be ranked No. 25 and work our way up, than being No. 1 and everybody is gunning for you. Everybody wants Georgia. Who doesn’t want Georgia?”  That’s right, Jeff.  Watch out for these Georgia Bulldogs, because they are on their way to a national title – 21 years is a long time to be on the porch with the pups.

2. USC Trojans
This team is just swarmed with powerhouse starters.  Big playmakers including linebacker Rey Maualuga, running back Joe McKnight, and receiver Patrick Turner are going to be tearing up the field this season. Despite missing a returning starting quarterback from the lineup, Pete Carroll tends to mold the noobs with utmost care, producing big QB starters in just a year.  USC is going to take another stab at the Pac-10 title, and win it.  Period.

3. Ohio State Buckeyes
Ohio State has consistently produced a huge football program in the last five years, clearly dominating the Big Ten in the last two seasons.  This year is no exception, as the Ohio State Buckeyes are poised to win their third straight Big Ten Conference title – a feat that has never been accomplished by any Big Ten team in the 112-year history of the conference.  The Buckeyes are returning a whopping 20 starters – the same starters that led the team all the way to the BCS National Championship game in 2007-2008.  If they make it to the big game this year, they are going to have to deal with the Bulldogs (my pick), but it looks as if the assault is already prepared.  Yep, my crystal ball tells me the Buckeyes are going to dominate – possible repeat appearance at the BCS title game notwithstanding.

4. Florida Gators
With an outstanding offense and eight returning starters on defense, the Florida Gators are going to bring some quality football to the table in 2008-2009.  Urban Meyer promises to bring back the dual-quarterback system, drawing talent from both Cam Newton and Tim Tebow for a well-rounded offensive.  The defense also looks stronger than last season, and is poised to take on just about anything you can throw at it.  Georgia watch out: if Florida wants it, you could find yourself second in the SEC in 2008-2009.

5. Oklahoma Sooners
Last but not least, you have the boys from Oklahoma.  The Sooners are prepared to raise a ruckus this season as quarterback Sam Bradford leads an all-star offense on the ground and in the air.  Bradford destroyed the record for most touchdown passes thrown by a freshman in 2007.  Coupled with the fact that the team is returning 10 starters on offense – an offense that averaged 6.4 yards per play last season – this team is going to be hard to beat.  Although the team is replacing several defensive players, the starting defensive line is there, and is going to open up holes for anyone who wants a piece of the opposition.  Look for Oklahoma to win the Big 12 Championship yet again this year.

You can purchase tickets to every college football game – including bowl games and the BCS National Championship – here.