College football is entering week 5. There are always things to watch every week of the season. Here are 5 things to watch in college football week 5.
1. Lane Kiffin vs. Nick Saban
From 2014-2016, Lane Kiffin coached under Nick Saban at Alabama. He left to coach Florida Atlantic, but now is at Ole Miss. The Rebels are undefeated and are taking on Alabama, where Kiffin will go up against Saban for the second time since Kiffin rejoined the conference. In 2020, Ole Miss scored points, but fell 63-48.
This year could be different for the Ole Miss-Alabama game. Alabama showed some vulnerability in letting Florida come back after going up early. Bryce Young has looked really good for the Crimson Tide. The defense still looks solid, but they have looked beatable. With Matt Corral playing well for Ole Miss at quarterback this year with 997 passing yards, nine touchdowns and no interceptions on 68.8 percent completion, the Rebels may be able to test the Crimson Tide.
2. Arkansas at Georgia
Arkansas has been one of the most impressive teams of the young college football season. With wins against Georgia and Texas A&M, they are on a roll. Their closest margin of victory is 10, which came against Texas A&M. With an offense that can put up points with K.J. Jefferson at quarterback and Treylon Burks at wide receiver, and a defense that only allows 14.5 points per game, Arkansas looks really dangerous.
In week 5, they will get a tough test when they travel to Georgia. The Bulldogs beat Clemson in week 1, showing off their great defense in the process. Their defense has allowed 5.8 points per game this season and is stifling. The offense hasn’t been as consistently good, but they average over 42 points per game. They have had a decently balanced attack with JT Daniels at quarterback. For Georgia to win they’ll need Daniels to make some big throws. Either way, the game should be a battle.
3. Cincinnati’s Best Shot at the College Football Playoff
Cincinnati went undefeated last year and the Bearcats are 3-0 so far this season. They have a road win over Indiana under their belts, but they have a lot more to prove if they want to make the College Football Playoff. Their offense has looked sloppy at times, but they are averaging 43 points per game. On defense, the Bearcats have some NFL-level talent and allow 15 points per game. They will have earned a big win if they can go into Notre Dame Stadium and leave with a win.
The Fighting Irish are undefeated themselves this year. They haven’t looked great and have let teams that they are better than stay in games, but they haven’t lost. Most notably this season, Notre Dame beat Wisconsin in a close game until the Fighting Irish pulled away in the fourth quarter. The defense allows 23.3 points per game, but they have allowed just 13 points in each of the last two contests. They have had some offensive line issues despite scoring 35.3 points per game. The big question for the Fighting Irish is who the quarterback will be. Jack Coan, the starter, limped off the field and didn’t return against Wisconsin. Freshman Tyler Buchner had played, but was out for the Wisconsin game with a hamstring injury. Drew Pyne entered and played well. Not knowing who is starting could be a slight competitive advantage for the Fighting Irish, as Brian Kelly and defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman are going up against their former school.
4. Big 12 Matchups
Oklahoma continues to win close games and are undefeated. They take on Kansas State, who lost their first game of the season against Oklahoma State in week 4. The Sooners will try to establish the run, which is something they struggled to do against West Virginia. They need a game to get back on track, but it won’t be easy. Kansas State may be without starting quarterback Skylar Thompson, but running back Deuce Vaughn is talented enough to change games. The Sooners should win, but with the way they are playing it will be close.
Another Big 12 game that is worth watching is Oklahoma State vs. Baylor, a battle of undefeated teams. Oklahoma State also hasn’t played up to their potential, even though they are undefeated. They’ll need tenured starter Spencer Sanders to have a good day at quarterback. On the other sideline, Baylor has surprised many to be undefeated after knocking off Iowa State. Quarterback Gerry Bohanon has looked good passing for 828 yards and seven touchdowns. Oklahoma State is favored by four points, but the game could go either way.
5. Florida at Kentucky
Florida has a loss on the season, but it came at the hands of Alabama. After struggling to blow out teams early in the season, the game against Alabama helped earn them respect even in a loss. Emory Jones has improved from the start of the season at quarterback and the defense is much improved over the 2020 season. They look like they can compete with Georgia for the SEC East.
Kentucky is undefeated and has a chance to spoil things for Florida or Georgia in the SEC East. Their offensive line and defense have become staples of what they do, but his year they have thrown the ball more. Will Levis has had an up and down season so far, but it is still more than Kentucky has had at the position in a while. If he can spread the ball around, while still getting Wandale Robinson his touches, the Kentucky offense becomes harder to defend. WIth Chris Rodriguez running tough, the balanced attack could make them hard to defend. When they get it right, Kentucky can compete with Georgia and Florida, but when they get it wrong, they have results like barely beating FCS-level Chattanooga. Florida is favored by eight points, as this one might just go down to the wire.
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