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College Football Mid-Season Review 2017

Jack Corcoran, Staff

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Every year, like clockwork, there is a frenzy around college football. With contenders, it’s how their team can get into the playoff and win the championships. With disappointments, it’s who will get fired, or how their team can get their season back on track.

With the first college football playoff rankings surfacing, talking heads across the country have been making their opinions known about which teams in the first official rankings will actually make the playoff. This year, Georgia got the nod over Alabama due to a lack of a signature win on the part of Bama, and Notre Dame came in at third with a 7-1 record. The Irish steamrolled over all of their opponents this far, taking out ranked teams like Michigan State, USC, and NC State by a minimum of 20 points. Clemson came in at number four, where the defending champion Tigers come in with a record of 7-1 and with a loss to 4-4 Syracuse on their resume. The rankings are all filled with similar contenders, with teams like Oklahoma, Ohio State, Penn State, and Wisconsin all in the mix for a playoff spot.

One of the bigger surprises of this year has been the resurgence of Miami, with the Hurricanes in the mix for both an ACC Championship and a spot in the playoff. While the first few games were nothing to write home about, the games versus Georgia Tech and Florida State were amazing. In both games, with the clock winding down, Miami losing but with a shred of hope still left, and against the two staunch defenses of the two schools, redshirt junior Malik Rosier, who had previously backed up Brad Kaaya, threw a sideline bomb to receiver Darrell Langham, who made a miraculous catch along the sideline, and in the case of Florida State, and

took it into the end zone, or, in the case of Georgia Tech, fell out of bounds before Miami punched it in on first-and goal to beat the Yellow Jackets. That win, coupled with a close game against North Carolina, made Miami the Cinderella of college football.

By far the biggest disappointment has been Florida State. They came into the season with a No. 3 ranking headed into their season opener against Alabama which they ended up losing 24-7. During that game, they ended up losing their starting QB and Heisman contender DeAndre Francois for the season with a torn ACL. After that, their offense hasn’t been as explosive and their defense hasn’t been able to pull their weight en route to a 2-5 record on the year, and the team is in serious danger of losing their decades-long bowl streak.

Year in and year out, one of the major frenzies around college football is the coaching carousel. This year, the main names going around are Tennessee’s Butch Jones and Nebraska’s Mike Riley. Jones, who has long been seen as a poor fit and seems to perennially be on the hot seat, seems to be at a world’s end with the fans as his team has fallen off of a cliff with a 3-5 record and an 0-5 record in the SEC, including a 41-0 drubbing by Georgia at home. With a quarterback controversy and fans seeming to call for his head left and right, one has to wonder how long Jones will last. A curious hire coming out of Oregon State after Nebraska fired Bo Pelini after a 67-27 record, the 64-year-old Mike Riley has only gone 19-15 through parts of three seasons with the Huskers after going 93-80 during 16 seasons with the Beavers. Coming off of a 9-4 season in his second year and hiring long-time defensive coordinator Bob Diaco, this year was anticipated with much optimism. That has not been the case, however, as the team has gotten off to a slow 4-4 start and was blown out at home by Wisconsin and Ohio State in back-to-back weeks.

This year has been the year of the running back as the two front-runners this year are Penn State’s Saquon Barkley and Stanford’s Bryce Love, who are both chock-full of highlights for Heisman voters to consider. While this is only a mid-season review and things could change, all that this proves is that college football really is a crazy, crazy game.

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The Student News Site of Catonsville High School.
College Football Mid-Season Review 2017