Good afternoon, folks. Week 15 has arrived. Let’s hit on some news, notes, nuggets, trends, injury info, tweets and much more from the world of college football.
–ICYMI: Ole Miss at Texas A&M was postponed late Monday afternoon. This game might become the only (knock on wood) SEC contest that gets completely scrapped. The only way it’ll get played is if a different game has to get nixed next weekend (12/19).
–According to Chris Balas, Senior Editor of The Wolverine, the Michigan-Ohio St. game is going to be cancelled with an announcement coming soon:
–Now it’ll be interesting to see if — like Wisconsin AD Barry Alvarez suggested last week — the Big Ten backtracks off of its stance of teams having to play six games to qualify for the Big Ten Championship Game. If not, hopefully the Buckeyes can get a game scheduled against the next-best team in the league that’s not in the conference-title game. Wisconsin, perhaps? What would be much more fun –but would need the approval of SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey and the Big Ten — is Texas A&M vs. Ohio St. on Dec. 19. BYU and Coastal made it happen last week. Why not?
–Speaking of Coastal’s win over the Cougars, I hit on that and much more in my Week 14 Rewind on MajorWager’s YouTube channel.
–FanDuel has Alabama installed as a 14-point favorite vs. Florida in the SEC Championship Game from Atlanta on Dec. 19. There’s no total yet but like I tweeted more than a month ago, if that number is less than 80 points, I’ll be on the ‘over.’
–DraftKings has Alabama as the even-money ‘chalk’ to win the College Football Playoff in its updated future odds. The next-shortest odds belong to Clemson (+275), Ohio St. (+450), Notre Dame (+700), Florida (+1800), Texas A&M (+1800), Cincinnati (50/1), Indiana (150/1), Northwestern (150/1), Iowa St. (500/1) and Oklahoma (500/1).
–Saturday’s Cincinnati-Tulsa game has been postponed, so both teams will meet on Dec. 19 in Cincinnati in the AAC Championship Game.
–Louisiana head coach Billy Napier made an extremely odd decision late in the fourth quarter of his team’s 24-21 win at Appalachian St. To be clear, I think it was a moronic call on Napier’s part. Yes, there were some circumstances — some rain and a rough night for UL’s long snapper (and I would guess, memories of the Michigan St. at Michigan finish on the blocked punt 4-5 years ago) — that had Napier concerned about the obvious option. That was punting the ball with a five-point lead in your own territory with less than two minutes remaining. Anyway, SI’s Ross Dellenger provided a nice read on the situation and to my surprise, there were some people that agreed with the move to take a safety on purpose. In the end, Appalachian St. attempted a potentially tying 30-yard field goal to force overtime as time expired. The FGA missed and UL survived to improve to 9-1, but that doesn’t mean Napier made the right move.
–Louisiana will play at undefeated Coastal Carolina on Dec. 19 in the Sun Belt Championship Game. It’ll be a rematch of the Ragin’ Cajuns’ 30-27 loss to the Chanticleers as nine-point home favorites on Oct. 17. While Napier’s team gets two weeks to prepare, Coastal Carolina has to play at Troy this Saturday.
–Eastern Michigan started the season 0-4 with three gut-wrenching heartbreakers. The Eagles finally picked up their first victory in Week 14, winning 53-42 at Western Michigan as 13.5-point road underdogs to improve to 3-2 against the spread for the season. EMU is 3-0 ATS as a road underdog this year to improve to an incredible 19-2 ATS in its last 21 such spots. Chris Creighton’s team closes the season at home Saturday vs. winless No. Illinois as a six-point home favorite. The Eagles aren’t a team you want to play as favorites, though, as they’re 5-10 ATS as home ‘chalk’ during Creighton’s seven-year tenure.
–According to R.J. Abeytia, Stanford WRs Connor Wedington and Michael Wilson are likely done for the 2020 campaign. Wilson has 19 catches for 261 yards and one TD in four games. Wedington has 15 catches for 157 yards. The Cardinal has won back-to-back games at California (24-23) and at Washington (31-26). David Shaw’s team is a three-point favorite Saturday at Oregon St.
–Speaking of the Beavers, they have covered the spread in four consecutive games. The ‘over’ has hit in three in a row for OSU.
–USC starting DB Greg Johnson is out for the rest of the season with a torn meniscus. In four games, Johnson had 15 tackles, one tackle for loss and one pass broken up.
–Florida head coach Dan Mullen said that senior DE Jeremiah Moon will ‘probable’ miss Saturday’s game vs. LSU, but he’s hoping that Moon will be ready to play against Alabama. Moon has been out since sustaining a foot injury in a 44-28 win over Georgia. In four games, Moon had 14 tackles, two QB hurries, one sack and 0.5 TFL’s. UF senior safety Shawn Davis is ‘questionable’ vs. LSU after missing last week’s 31-19 win at Tennessee. In seven games, Davis has 40 tackles, two interception for 45 return yards, two TFL’s, one forced fumble and one pass broken up.
–LSU star freshman Arik Gilbert missed LSU’s practice yesterday and is reportedly considering transferring:
–Gilbert was rated as the best tight end in the nation coming out of Marietta High School (RIP to former long-time Marietta HC and former Florida Gator football player, James ‘Friday’ Richards) in the 2020 recruiting cycle. He’s had a helluva freshman season, catching 35 balls for 368 yards and two TDs. If he transfers and is wanting to get closer to home, Kirby Smart and UGA would obviously be interested.
–South Carolina junior LB Ernest Jones announced earlier today that he’s declaring for the 2021 NFL Draft. In nine games in 2020, Jones recorded 86 tackles, four TFL’s, three QB hurries, one forced fumble and one sack.
–The nation’s winless teams are 0-57 combined. Yikes: