College Football Week 3: Distractions Abound

College Football Week 3: Distractions Abound

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Will the Big 12 Conference implode?

Two weeks of college football have passed with most teams still getting the kinks out their systems. Without the benefit of an exhibition season, what you’re seeing on the field may not indicate just how good or bad some football teams are this year.

Conference Buzz

There is a huge underlying distraction this season that has some fans speculating nearly as often about the future as they are about the current season. No, the buzz isn’t about punishing the Miami Hurricanes for several egregious problems involving cash, drugs and prostitutes, but something with widespread implications: the possible implosion of the Big 12 conference.

Already down to 10 teams, the Big 12 is poised to lose one member in the near term, Texas A&M, with others threatening to bolt. The Aggies have stated that they’re leaving the Big 12 and the SEC seems likely to accept its overture. That decision is pending, although an announcement seems likely this month.

Baylor Bears

Baylor is attempting to hold the league together by promising to sue the Aggies in a bid to keep its Texas rival in the conference. That isn’t likely to result in a positive outcome for the Bears who represent one of the weakest football playing schools in the conference despite its win over TCU at the beginning of the season.

The time to make a difference for the Big 12 was last year when Colorado and Nebraska were looking to leave. Now that both schools are in the Pac 12 and Big Ten conferences, respectively, these programs have shown the remaining ten Big 12 members that greener pastures can, indeed, be found.

Pending Departures

So, how quickly will the Big 12 implode? Very fast especially if Oklahoma moves to the Big 12 and takes Oklahoma State with it. Missouri has made known that it wants to move on and the Big East has expressed interest in Kansas. Kansas and Kansas State could become a bookend deal that the Big East would offer to avert possible problems from Kansan state officials who might scotch the deal if the Jayhawks left and the Wildcats were left holding the bag.

Oddly, the University of Texas could find itself in an uncomfortable position as the only big name school left in a conference that seems likely to disappear next year. In any case, the Longhorns have to be talking to several conferences in a bid to find a deal that is right for this school. The Pac 12 may be the best choice, but the Big Ten and ACC are other conferences the Longhorns may explore especially if the prestigious SEC shows little interest.

Top Games

Despite the distractions, there are some top notch games this week, beginning tonight when #3 LSU takes on #25 Mississippi State. The Bulldogs are fresh off a narrow loss to Auburn and can quickly raise its credibility by knocking off the Tigers. Two years ago the Tigers escaped Davis Wade Stadium with a 30-26 win; this year the Bulldogs would love to bring the hammer down on one of the best teams in college football.

Other games of significance include #15 Michigan State traveling to South Bend, Indiana, to face Notre Dame. The Irish, ranked at the beginning of the season are now 0-2, with no room to lose again, at least this early in the season. Look for the Spartans and Irish to put up a dogfight, with this game decided late, just like the Michigan-Notre Dame game was last week.

The big game this weekend will take place Saturday night when the top-ranked Oklahoma Sooners take on the Florida State Seminoles at Doak Campbell Stadium. Neither team has been challenged thus far this season, but that all changes beginning at 8 p.m. in Tallahassee.

See AlsoFrightening Lightening: Week 2 Reprise?

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Categories: NCAA Football