Tuesday, October 15, 2013
3-point stance: How good is Auburn?
By Ivan Maisel
1. If I had known that the College Football Playoff would have given us Nebraska-Oregon in 2016-17; pushed Tennessee and Virginia Tech to play at a NASCAR track; made nine-game conference schedules desirable (how about it, SEC?), provided us a with a selection committee, and an argument over whether a former U.S. Secretary of State should serve on said committee, I would have been sold on a playoff a lot sooner.
2. No. 24 Auburn has attracted very little attention for being 5-1, with good reason. The Tigers’ five wins have all come at home, four of them against FBS opponents with a cumulative record of 9-9 against FBS competition. If you got any more vanilla than that, Ben & Jerry would sue. On the other hand, the Tigers haven’t lost to Washington State, Arkansas State, Mississippi State or Ole Miss, quite a feat for a team that went 3-9 last year. This week, Auburn plays at No. 7 Texas A&M. We find out soon enough.
3. Texas Tech’s Kliff Kingsbury may be a 34-year-old, first-year head coach, but the list of guys who could coax 400-yard passing games out of not one but two true freshmen quarterbacks has got to be pretty short. Walk-on Baker Mayfield threw for 413 yards in the opener against SMU, and after he got hurt on Oct. 5, Davis Webb started and threw for a Big-12-best 415 yards in the Red Raiders’ 42-35 defeat of Iowa State. And, oh yes, Texas Tech is 6-0 and ranked No. 16.