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Cigars & Football – A Simple Blend

Week 10 Preview

Week 10 Preview
Match Up Weekend

(1) Alabama vs (4) LSU – In the biggest match up of the weekend the Crimson Tide travels to Baton Rouge to take on the Tigers of LSU in the Tigers’ lair, Death Valley.. This will be the biggest threat that Bama has faced so far. LSU has a burning desire to beat Alabama, it’s been 7 years since they’ve experienced a victory over the Tide. For them to get what they rabidly want, they are going to have to rely upon their defense. They have lost their premier linebacker for the first half due to a targeting infraction against Mississippi State, and Bayou Bengal fans actually say that Nick Saban paid off the officials to take LB Allen out of the first half. Bollocks. There isn’t a linebacker in America that the Alabama offensive line is afraid of. Their primary strength is the secondary. They have been able to shut down the passing attacks of Mississippi State, Texas A&M and Georgia as opposing QB’s have helped out a lot. The defensive line, however. has been suspect against the run. When they played MSU, they were determined to stop Nick Fitzgerald from tucking the ball, and, For the most part, they did, but they still allowed him to run for over 100 yards. Georgia, for some reason, abandoned their run when it was working, which was part of the Dawgs helping the Tigers win that game. On the opposite side of the ball, the offense is coming into this game without a standout running back like they’ve had in the past. The Tigers need that running game to come off life support and provide an alternative to the pass because QB Joe Burrow can’t win this game on his own. He has had some success but he’s not a dynamic thrower. Alabama has been tearing up the opposition. Their modus opperundi has been to score so many points in the first quarter that the other team loses hope of mounting an adequate come back. If we just took the points that Bama scores in the first quarter, they are ranked third in the SEC in total points. Can they do that in this game? I don’t know, I’m hoping that they do, but this is going to be a tough assignment. Tua will need the success that us Bama fans have grown accustomed to. If the LSU secondary is able to stifle Alabama’s passing attack, the Bama running game will be relied upon to carry the load, and there are few coaches indeed who wish to figure out a plan to stop Alabama’s ground game. So far this season, they have not had to rely on their bevy of very talented big, fast, running backs. More than likely they will be up to the challenge. Now, I’m not calling the shots here, darn it, but if it was up to me, I’d do the opposite of what LSU is expecting. I’d run the ball down their throat, grind it out, keeping the ball on long drives that eat up the clock and wear down the defense. Then, when they start getting tired, I’d unleash the passing attack. But like I said, I’m not calling the shots. Alabama is still the pick to win.

(6) Georgia vs (11) Kentucky – Georgia has been the pick to win the East from the start of the season, but they are not playing the way they did last year. They’re good, well, they laid an egg against LSU, but the rest of the season they’ve been pretty good. The Dawgs has a bruising running game. RB Elijah Holyfield is a battering ram, he runs hard and he loves running over everything and everyone. Once Holyfield has softened up the defensive line. they use RB D’Andre Swift who is extremely fast and quick, but this running game has not overwhelmed the other teams. They’ve probably been underutilized because the passing game with QB Jake Fromm has been working out well. The defense is not as good as they were last year, they’ve got a lot of young players who have not reached their full potential. Against Kentucky, the defensive line needs to own the line of scrimmage. The Wildcats have not been able to generate a lot of offense, enough to win, yes, but not enough to impress. The UK defense is going to face their toughest challenge Saturday. If they’re not able to get into the backfield and disrupt the timing, this game could get out of hand very quickly. The struggles the offense has experienced had better be behind them. The Cats need to strike quick and often, the more they score in the first half, the better. They’ve got to make UGA play from behind. Kentucky pulled their bacon out of the fire in the last four seconds against Missouri, but that’s not going to work on Saturday.

(14) Penn State vs (5) Michigan – The Nittany Lions need a swift kick in the butt to get their act together. They should be better than what they’ve produced. Maybe taking on the Wolverines will give them that swift kick. The defense has let teams come back again and again, and against Michigan State and Ohio State it cost them the game. The offense has had a dismal running attack which puts all the pressure on the passing game, which, to be frank, has failed. In the past they’ve been able to beat Michigan, but things are not looking favorable for a repeat performance. Michigan’s defense has been playing lights out. Since they beat Michigan State they’ve dedicated this season to a tour of revenge. They’ll have to beat PSU to keep the tour on track. What has made UM a much better team is that they have a QB who can actually throw the ball to the right player. It’s funny that they had to go fishing in the SEC to get a good one, because loud mouth Harbaugh has made a habit of bashing the South whenever he gets the chance. It is doubtful Penn State will make this game close, but there is always hope. But hope is never a course of action.

(12) West “By Golly” Virginia vs (15) Texas – The Mountaineer’s offense has been on a tear, they score quickly, and seemingly at will, but they’ve mostly played teams with poor defenses. When they faced a tough defense in Iowa State they were shut down and lost the game. Texas has a good defense, they held down Oklahoma enough to beat the Sooners, but the Horns could not repeat that performance against Oklahoma State. UT offense was playing so well that some people considered the Longhorns to be back. Then they tripped over themselves with the Pokes of Oklahoma State. If they want to win the conference they cannot, must not, no way possible, can they play as badly as they did last weekend. They have to put together hard long drives, the WVU defense will not be able to consistently stop Texas if they’re on the field for long periods of time. This also keeps the Mountaineers’ offense on the sideline getting cold and bored. Nevertheless, the boys from West “By Golly” Virginia are going to win the game.

Air Force vs Army – The Black Knights begin their defense of the Commander’s Cup by hosting the Falcons. Army has been having a fabulous year, they took OU into overtime and have been the dominate team in most of their games. They have the better record, they have momentum, and everything is bouncing their way. Air Force is struggling to find their identity. Army will zero in their sights and shoot down Air Force. GO ARMY!

(3) Notre Dame vs Northwestern – The Irish are undefeated, the press is peeing all over themselves with glee. But, looking at the Irish schedule, they have not played very tough teams. I’m including Michigan, Stanford is weak, VA Tech lost to Old Dominion, and the rest of the teams they’ve played have losing records. Northwestern has won four games in a row and last Saturday they beat Wisconsin like a rented mule. Everyone and their uncle is picking Notre Dame to win, and they might, but it is doubtful it will be an easy game. It would not surprise CSF if the Wildcats pull the upset, and I do so hope they do. Ooops. There’s that ‘hope’ word again.

Short Smokes

Virginia will poke the Panthers of Pitt

Colorado is in desperate need of a victory, so the Buffs need to beat Arizona

Clemson will pull their starters by halftime against Louisville. Showoffs.

It would be SO funny if Nebraska would upset Ohio State, but they won’t. (Can I say ‘hope’ a third time?)

The daughter is going to be mad but the Aggies are going to lose to Auburn. Mond does not give them a passing game. BUT I’m pulling for A&M.(notice, I didn’t say, ‘hope’)

Ole Miss might, just might, beat South Carolina, who struggled against Tennessee

Wisconsin gets a break with Rutgers

Oklahoma State uses their six shooters at will against Baylor

Iowa State keeps Kansas from winning game number 4

Doubtful Purdue will win against Iowa, unless the game is at Iowa. Oh, it is? That’s different.

NC State will enjoy beating Florida State

Minnesota plays poor Illinois and the Gophers will win

Virginia Tech is going to lose two in a row, this one against Boston College.

Missouri can beat Florida, they really can, but they won’t

The Herm Train of Arizona State is going to hit a break in the track against Utah

Tennessee gets another win against Charlotte, good for the Vols

Duke is going to beat Miami and I will laugh

The way Oregon and UCLA are playing, who knows who’s going to win, or, if there’ll even be a winner? who knows

Oklahoma and Texas Tech could be a shoot out, OU wins but the total score might be over 100

Washington State is in the top ten for the first time in a very long time, they’ll keep their place after beating Cal.

North Alabama will be hosing Shorter, we’ve played them before and beaten them, there is no reason what-so-ever the Lions will not do it again. Roar Lions!

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