Tuesday, November 12, 2019

2019 NCAA Football Top 25 Rankings (Week Eleven)

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By: Jimbo X

Let’s face it — the Associated Press and USA Today don’t know what the hell they’re talking about when it comes to college football, which is why their Top 25 rankings are always such dogshit. Thankfully, we here at The Internet Is In America take our collegiate pigskin far more seriously, which is why we’re giving you our own unbiased, impartial, 100 percent objective NCAA Top 25 rankings each and every week this college ball season. Trust us, there’s no reason to scope out ESPN or Bleacher Report this fall … ‘cause when it comes to football on Saturday, ain’t nobody anywhere gonna’ give it to ‘ya as straight as TIIIA will, and that’s a guarantee.

#001
Clemson (10-0)
Next Opponent: vs. Wake Forest (Nov. 16)

In Saturday’s 55-10 throttling of NC State, Trevor Lawrence went 20 for 27 for 276 yards and three TD passes. Meanwhile, Travis Etienne finished the game with 112 yards and two rushing scores on 14 carries, while the Tigers’ D held the Wolfpack to just 166 yards passing and only 124 running all day long — which, naturally, means the CFP committee will probably rank ‘em just No. 7 or No. 8 in the playoffs rankings. Someway to treat the reigning, defending National Champs, huh?

#002
LSU (9-0)
Next Opponent: at Ole Miss (Nov. 16)

The Tigers prevailed over the Tide Saturday in a 46-41 thriller. Joe Burrow finished the game a stellar 31 for 39 for 393 yard and three touchdown passes, but the biggest variable for LSU’s offense in the win had to be the tremendous production out of running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who finished the rare regular season No. 1 vs. No. 2 matchup with 103 yards and THREE touchdowns on 20 carries … plus another 77 yards, and one more touchdown, playing receiver.

#003
Ohio State (9-0)
Next Opponent: at Rutgers (Nov. 16)

Up against a trash Maryland team, the Buckeyes played gridiron industrial incinerator over the weekend, literally holocausting the Terrapins to the tune of 73-14. Justin Fields went 16 for 25 for 200 yards and three TD passes before the back-ups got called in, with top rusher Master Teague III concluding the contest with 111 yards (but no scores) on 18 carries. And the defense, of course, looked plum devastating, holding Maryland to just 77 yards passing and 62 yards running the rock.

#004
Minnesota (9-0)
Next Opponent: at Iowa (Nov. 16)

The Golden Gophers’ improbable run continued Saturday with their most impressive win of the year (so far) — a 31-26 victory over the Nittany Lions. Tanner Morgan looked damn near perfect in the victory, going 18 for 20 for 339 yards and three touchdown passes, with top receiver Rashod Bateman calling it a day with 203 yards and one score on seven catches. And Minnesota’s defense DEFINITELY made its presence felt — not only did they sack Sean Clifford twice, the secondary managed to intercept him not once, not twice but three times.

#005
Baylor (9-0)
Next Opponent: vs. Oklahoma (Nov. 16)

Believe it or not, the Baylor/TCU game ended with a 9-9 deadlock at the end of regulation. At that point, both teams decided to pretend it was 2014 again, and from there, it was just offense-city back-and-forth for three overtime periods. Of course, the Golden Bears prevailed in the thrilling shootout, with Charlie Brewer ultimately concluding the game 27 for 41 for 195 yards, two passing TDs and one INT. He was also responsible for Baylor’s only rushing touchdown of the game, too — indeed, with 41 yards on 15 carries, he was the most productive player in gold and green on the ground all game long.

#006
Alabama (8-1)
Next Opponent: at Mississippi State (Nov. 16)

Even in defeat, Alabama’s offense looked daunting in Saturday’s 46-41 loss to LSU. In high big return game, Tua Tagovailoa went 21 for 30 for 418 yards, ultimately amassing four touchdowns (and a solo INT) before calling it a day. Top receiver DeVonta Smith finished the loss with 213 yards and two scores on seven catches, and running the rock, Najee Harris looked VERY good; at the final horn, he had 146 yards and one score on 19 carries. 

#007
Penn State (8-1)
Next Opponent: vs. Indiana (Nov. 16)

Turnovers more or less sunk the Nittany Diddlers in Saturday’s 31-26 upset loss to Minnesota. Sean Clifford went 23 for 43 for 340 yards and one TD pass, but in the process, also lobbed three insanely costly interceptions. And while Journey Brown did what he could to get some traction going for the offense — he ended the game with two touchdowns and 124 yards on 14 carries — it certainly wasn’t enough to make up for the MANY deficiencies in Penn State’s passing game over the weekend.

#008
Georgia (8-1)
Next Opponent: at Auburn (Nov. 16)

Jake Fromm went 13 for 29 for 173 yards and two TD passes in Georgia’s 27-0 shutout of Missouri Saturday. Interestingly enough, both of those end zone zips went to receiver George Pickens, who concluded the contest with 67 yards on just five receptions. D’Andre Swift had 83 yards (but no touchdowns) on 12 carries, and the Bulldogs defense looked pretty good combating both facets of the Tigers’ impotent offensive attack; Missouri was limited to just 148 yards passing, and a mere 50 running the rock.

#009
Oklahoma (8-1)
Next Opponent: at Baylor (Nov. 16)

Yep, it was another close call for the Sooners, but this time around, Oklahoma managed to stave off the monumental upset and best Iowa State by the ultra-narrow margin of 42-41. Jalen Hurts ended up collecting five touchdowns before the game was over — three as a quarterback lobbing the rock (18 for 26, 273 yards, one INT) and two as a quarterback doing his best Michael Vick impersonation (68 yards, 22 carries.) Oh, and CeeDee Lamb had a pretty good day, stats-wise; the Sooners’ best receiver exited the outing with 167 yards and two touchdown passes on eight catches.

#010
Oregon (8-1)
Next Opponent: vs. Arizona (Nov. 16)

The Ducks had a bye over the weekend and will return to action this Sunday for a home stand against an Arizona team that — let’s face it — just ain’t that good. Really, Oregon has no excuse to NOT run the table, considering the only teams they have left on the schedule after that are Arizona State and Oregon State. Of course, even with a one-loss record AND a PAC-12 Championship, it’s hard to imagine seeing Oregon sneak into the playoffs … that is, unless a LOT of kooky things happen between now and the first Saturday in December.

#011
Utah (8-1)
Next Opponent: vs. UCLA (Nov. 16)

Following a bye, the Utes return to the gridiron Saturday for a PAC-12 clash with UCLA. From there, the only thing standing between Utah and an automatic conference championship bid are tilts against Arizona and Colorado in late November that they should win, but we all know this is a team with a bad habit of hunching the pooch when they really ought not to (you know, as if there were ever an appropriate time to hunch a pooch.) With only the slimmest of microscopic shots at making the playoffs, the best the Utes can hope for is a good showing in the Rose Bowl — that is, pending they even make it TO the PAC 12 title game, let alone win it.

#012
Boise State (8-1)
Next Opponent: vs. New Mexico (Nov. 16)

It may have required extra innings, but the Blue Turfers nonetheless managed to best Wyoming on Saturday, beating the surprisingly not that sucky Cowboys 20-17 in O.T. Chase Cord went 19 for 30 for 190 yards and a one-to-one TD-to-INT split in the win, with top receiver Khalil Shakir calling it a day with 70 yards on seven catches. Meanwhile, John Hightower led the team with 38 yards on two carries … which, really, ought to tell you about how much Boise State’s rushing attack struggled in this one. 

#013
Cincinnati (8-1)
Next Opponent: at South Florida (Nov. 16)

The Bearcats BTFO the Huskies Saturday, mercilessly mauling UConn 48-3 in a one-sided massacre. Desmond Ridder wet 12 for 23 for 136 yards and two passing touchdowns in the win, with top receiver Josiah Deguara collecting two touchdown passes and 45 yards on five catches. Meanwhile, the Bearcats outran the Huskies 307 yards to 148 on the ground, with Michael Warren II collecting two touchdowns and 60 yards on 14 carries and Gerrid Doaks finishing the outing with 123 yards and one score on 13 touches. 

#014
Navy (7-1)
Next Opponent: at Notre Dame (Nov. 16)

The Midshipmen haven’t seen action since Nov. 1’s 56-10 win over UConn, but the team’s next four match-ups ought to be must-watch (or, at least, must-YouTube-on-Monday-morning) television. The killer concluding schedule begins with a tough-as-nails road trip to Notre Dame this weekend, followed by a brutal homestead against SMU, wrapping up with a final home game against a dangerous Houston squad. And then, of course, there’s the annual gala against Army on Dec. 14 — all I can say is that if Navy somehow gets out of all of this with nothing but wins, they MORE than deserve that at-large bid in this year’s Cotton Bowl. And oh shit, isn’t there supposed to be an AAC Championship game somewhere in there, too? Dayum.

#015
Memphis (8-1)
Next Opponent: at Houston (Nov. 16)

After a bye, Memphis jumps back into the thick of things with a road test against Houston Saturday afternoon. After that, they travel to South Florida for a game the Tigers have no reason to not win, and on Nov. 29, grab your popcorn and a two liter of your favorite soda, ‘cause it’s unofficial playoffs time as Memphis dukes it out with Cincinnati for what is likely a de facto AAC Championship Game birth, if not the de facto AAC Championship itself. Alas, it’s all riding on the throwing shoulder of one Brady White, who, at this juncture in the 2019-2020 campaign, has already surpassed 2,500 passing yards and is on pace to possibly eclipse 30 TD passes before the regular season is finished.

#016
SMU (9-1)
Next Opponent: at Navy (Nov. 23)

The Methodists survived another high-scoring shootout over the weekend, this time around besting East Carolina 59-51 in a pure-D NFL Blitz points-a-thon. Shane Buechele ended the game 33 for 46 for 414 yards, five TD passes and one interception, while top running back Xavier Jones called it a day with 157 yards and three rushing scores on 20 carries. Of course, there’s not a whole lot of good things you can say about SMU’s passing defense — I mean, when some guy named Holton Ahlers lobs the rock for 498 yards and SIX TD passes against you, how exactly do you think the team would fare against a Justin Fields or a Jalen Hurts?

#017
Appalachian State (8-1)
Next Opponent: at Georgia State (Nov. 16)

App State bested South Carolina 20-15 over the weekend, in a game that saw Zac Thomas go nine for 15 for 105 yards, no TD passes and one interception. Meanwhile, Darrynton Evans led the Mountaineers in rushing yards with 85 on 23 carries, but yeah, that pass defense looked downright atrocious, allowing Ryan Hilinski to touch ‘em for 325 yards easy. Indeed, it ended up being Nicholas Ross’ 20 yard-pick six late in the second quarter that proved the difference maker in this one — or maybe the fancy footwork of kicker Chandler Staton who had two field goals good from 40 yards out in the victory.

#018
Louisiana Tech (8-1)
Next Opponent: at Marshall (Nov. 15)

The Bulldogs triumphed over the Mean Green Saturday in a 52-17 shellacking. J’Mar Smith went 21 for 38 for 263 yards and a one-to-one TD-to-INT split in the win for Louisiana Tech, while top back Justin Henderson called it a day with two rushing scores and 58 yards on 15 carries. In fact, Louisiana Tech had no less than five rushing touchdowns on the day, including one attributed to a guy whose legal name is “Smoke Harris” — and just try and tell me this guy ain’t gonna’ be involved in a major narcotics bust once his playing days are over.

#019
Florida (8-2)
Next Opponent: at Missouri (Nov. 16)

The Gators — who pretty much have no prayer of making the National Playoffs whatsoever at this point — took out their rage on SEC chewy Vanderbilt Saturday, destroying the Commodores 56-0. Kyle Trash went 25 for 37 for 363 yards, three TD passes and two interceptions in the blowout victory, while Emory Jones concluded the outing with three rushing touchdowns and 34 yards on a mere five carries. And defensively, Florida did everything but push Vandy into negative integers; at the final horn, the Commodores had just 77 yards passing and only 51 rushing. 

#020
Auburn (7-2)
Next Opponent: vs. Georgia (Nov. 16)

At this point, Auburn can’t even be thinking about the words “playoffs.” Rather, with Georgia and Alabama remaining on their schedule, the Tigers are going to have to do everything they can to avoid a four-loss season, let alone make it to the SEC Championship Game (which, not like I need to tell you, is pretty much an impossibility unless a LOT of freaky things start happening over the next three weeks.) Still, Auburn can take solace in at least one thing — that home tilt against Samford on Nov. 23 ought to be light yard work in between that Bulldogs and Crimson Tide sandwich of misery.

#021
Notre Dame (7-2)
Next Opponent: vs. Navy (Nov. 16)

The Irish made short work of the Blue Devils Saturday, beating Duke 38-7 in a game that was not even remotely competitive at any juncture. Ian Book went 18 for 32 for 181 yards and four TD passes (plus two interceptions) in the rout, plus he led Notre Dame rushing with 139 yards on 12 keepers. Meanwhile, the Irish D limited Duke to just 102 yards passing and only 95 running the rock. Mark your calendars for this Saturday, kids — their home tilt with Navy ought to be a hoot and half to witness.

#022
Michigan (7-2)
Next Opponent: vs. Michigan State (Nov. 16)

You know, none of the games remaining on the Wolverines calendar are totally winnable affairs. Michigan State has shocked Michigan many, many times in the past, and the Hoosiers are looking better on the gridiron than they have in many, many years. Naturally, the big question here isn’t if Michigan can beat Ohio State on Nov. 30, but if the Wolverines will even have enough momentum left in their collective gas tanks to put up a halfway respectable showing against the Buckeyes — all I’m gonna’ say is don’t be surprised if the line for that one ends up being 20 plus in favor of the team named after a variety of acorn.

#023
Wisconsin (7-2)
Next Opponent: at Nebraska (Nov. 16)

It was a tough one, but the Badgers nonetheless managed to get past the Hawkeyes Saturday, topping Iowa 24-22 in a real nail-biter. Jack Coan finished the game 16 for 25 for 173 yards, two TD passes and one INT, with top receiver Quintez Cephus registering 94 yards and one end zone haul in five catches. And as expected, Jonathan Taylor kept Wisconsin’s rushing game going and going and going with 250 yards on 31 carries … albeit, suspiciously, without any touchdown trips.

#024
Wake Forest (7-2)
Next Opponent: at Clemson (Nov. 16)

No, the Demon Deacons did not look their best in Saturday’s 36-17 loss to Virginia Tech. Jamie Newman went 16 for 35 in the losing effort, amassing 238 yards for a two TD/two INT split. Even worse, Wake Forest just couldn’t get its run game going, on either sides of the ball; at the final horn, the best WF could muster on the ground was 63 yards, while allowing the Hokies’ run game to outpace ‘em for 228 yard and four rushing scores. Still, all of that would be quickly forgotten IF the Deacons manage to upset Clemson THIS Saturday, wouldn’t it? Hey … stop laughing.

#025
Indiana (7-2)
Next Opponent: at Penn State (Nov.16)

The Hoosiers — outside of that 51-10 loss to Ohio State back in September — have actually looked pretty good all season long, and if they managed to upset a Penn State team still reeling from Saturday’s shock loss to Minnesota, who knows how much momentum they will have carrying over into that Nov. 23 game against Michigan? At the end of the day, these Hoosiers may very well be the most surprising two-loss team in Division I-ball — you know, pending Purdue don’t decided to play spoiler and all on the last day of November. But when have the Boilermakers ever been known to cause monumental, inexplicable upsets in seemingly irrelevant Big 10 games, really?

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