College football is entering week 11. There are always things to watch every week of the season. Here are 5 things to watch in college football week 11.
1. Purdue’s New Upset Bid
This season already Purdue has two top-five wins. They defeated Iowa earlier in the year and then prevailed over Michigan State in week 10. This week, they will have a chance for another big win, albeit against the best team they have played yet. The Boilermakers will travel to Columbus to take on Ohio State in week 11.
Purdue will try to get the ball into David Bell‘s hands as often as possible, as the dynamic receiver gives the team the best chance to win. Ohio State’s offense has been efficient this season, but they struggled against Nebraska. The Buckeyes have talent all over the field on offense, but their defense could be put to the test if they fail to get pressure on Purdue quarterback Aidan O’Connell. A win for Purdue would shake up the CFP landscape.
2. Michigan vs. Penn State
Michigan has just one loss on the season, which came at the hands of Michigan State. The Wolverines still don’t have a great win this season and will continue to be tested in the last three weeks of the season. Their run defense was torched by the Spartans and it cost them the game. They had a bye week to get things together for their big game against Penn State.
The Nittany Lions also feature a solid defense. As Sean Clifford has gotten healthier over the last two weeks, Penn State’s performances have improved. If Clifford has a good game, the Nittany Lions can beat Michigan. The Big Ten Championship is out of reach for the Nittany Lions, but they could still have a nine-win season if they finish strong.
3. The Start of Oklahoma’s Tough Stretch
Oklahoma was on a bye in week 10 after being ranked eighth by the CFP Committee in the initial rankings. Their ranking was mostly based on poor performances, even in wins, and the fact that they didn’t have any notable wins under their belts. The opportunity will present itself for the Sooners to notch some big wins in the coming weeks.
In the next three weeks, the Sooners will play Baylor, Iowa State and Oklahoma State. It is very much a backloaded schedule for Oklahoma, as the teams listed sit directly behind them in the Big 12 standings. Baylor is coming off of a loss, but will test Oklahoma’s rush defense. If the Sooners can stop the run, they should be able to win and start off the tough stretch of the season with a win.
4. SEC West
The SEC West has some quality teams jockeying for position. Alabama sits atop the division, but behind them, there are a few teams who are fighting to stay alive in the race for the race to represent the division in the SEC Championship Game. Alabama plays New Mexico State, but the rest of the teams near the top of the SEC West have big games this week.
Mississippi State was strangely ranked 17 in the polls by the CFP Committee. They have since lost, but will have another tough game against Auburn this weekend. The Tigers have three losses on the season, but only two of them were within the conference. The other big game in the division features Texas A&M against Ole Miss. The Aggies defeated Alabama this season, but have two SEC losses. Ole Miss also has two SEC losses. Winning these games for Auburn, Texas A&M and Ole Miss will allow them to stay in the SEC West race.
5. The Battle of the ACC Atlantic
Wake Forest is still undefeated in ACC play. How is that possible after they just lost to UNC? The schools schedule a non-conference game with each other. That means the Demon Deacons are 5-0 in the ACC. Their offense has been dynamic with Sam Hartman leading the way at quarterback. He will have to have a big game against NC State for the Demon Deacons to hold their spot atop the ACC Atlantic.
The Wolfpack have two losses on the season. One came at the hands of Mississippi State and the other was a conference loss to Miami. NC State has some key injuries on their defense, but they allow just 16 points per game. Their ability to slow down Hartman is the key to the game. Devin Leary will also need to keep playing well for the Wolfpack at quarterback.
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