Welcome back, faithful Homerism readers. The Wild Wang is happy to have you. The first two weeks have been good to this guest columnist, going an impressive 6-2 against the spread for the second week in a row. This doctor is beginning to think he may have entered the wrong profession. I may take the next few weeks to sample the many tasty sauces Buffalo Wild Wings has to offer, so I can make an informed decision once Homerism loses this bet.
Here's the Wild Wang view of OU so far. Last week’s victory over Cincinnati was somewhat of a roller coaster ride. On the bright side, the offense looked almost unstoppable. Welcome to the show, Ryan Broyles. Malcolm who? Sam Bradford continues to do nothing but impress. This despite the assertion by the ABC announcers early in the game that Bradford didn’t even rank in the top five Big XII QBs so far this year. That soon will change. Make no mistake, this Bearcat team is no pushover. Rushing for 200 yards and 400 yards passing is stuff PS3 games are made of.
This game was scheduled prior to the disaster against Oregon, so we get Pac-10 officials again. They won’t have the chance to alter this outcome.
If not for the Ohio State-USC game, this contest would be getting much more attention by the national media. South Florida looks to help save face for the pathetic Big East. This matchup features two of the biggest media darlings from 2007. The Bulls have started 2-0 after gutting out an overtime victory over Central Florida last week. Matt Grothe threw for 350 yards and three touchdowns last week, while adding 50 yards on the ground. South Florida was aided by almost 150 yards worth of penalties against Central Florida.
Hard to ask for much more from Chase Daniel last week after he completed 16 out of 17 passes for 245 yards and three touchdowns in less than one half of work. Interestingly, Coach Gary Pinkel decided to play highly touted quarterback Blaine Gabbert in the second half and went as far as to say he would play next week against Buffalo also. The running and passing game were equally effective last week while rolling to a 42-0 halftime lead.
Who knew the Missouri Valley conference existed for football? Not me. Well, the Pokes get a chance to go up against a JV team when the Bears come to Stillwater. As predicted, there were plenty of fireworks last week when Houston made the trip to “The Boone.” Dez Bryant was unstoppable while picking up Big XII player of the week honors after racking up 236 yards and three touchdowns on nine catches. Kendall Hunter rushed for 210 yards on just 22 carries while finding the endzone twice. This was the kind of offense Poke fans were expecting this year. On the down side, the defense did allow 37 points and almost 500 total yards of offense.
The cyclones handed Dr. Wild Wang one of his loses last week when they beat up on Kent State by 20 points. With contributions from all aspects of the game, Iowa State was able jump on the Golden Flash early and come away with an easy win. A blocked a punt and two forced fumbles eventually turned into 21 points for Gene Chizik’s squad. The Cyclones did have a little trouble containing Kent quarterback Justin Edelman, who threw for three touchdowns and ran for 65 yards.
Baylor had the chance last week to be on the right side of a blowout after beating Northwestern State 51-6. Not exactly USC, but a win is a win. Washington State on the other hand has had the chance to be on the wrong side of two blowouts this far this season. Against Northwestern St., Baylor complied 308 yards by halftime, more than they had the entire game against Wake Forest. Robert Griffin was impressive in his first career start, throwing for three touchdowns and rushing for another.
The Wild Wang owes the Cornhuskers one after they were able to score 21 fourth quarter points last week to barely cover the spread. In doing so, though, I came away unimpressed. It took a kickoff return in the fourth quarter by Niles Paul to give Nebraska some breathing room against an inferior opponent at home. Joe Ganz threw for 216 yards with one interception and no touchdowns, while leading rusher Roy Helu was only able to manage 59 yards on the ground. The defense allowed 353 yards, 40 more than the Nebraska offense.
My thoughts on Texas Tech have already been documented here. Last week was somewhat of a disaster. I guess you can put on a spin on it and say that the defense and special teams proved they can be counted on to win games. Michael Crabtree was back putting up big numbers with 158 yards receiving, but Graham Harrell threw for “only” 297 yards and one touchdown.
June Jones has had a bit of a shaky start in Dallas this year, winning one and losing one. They were able to achieve victory over Texas State, but did give up 36 points in the process. The previous week saw the defense allow 56 points to Rice. Graham Harrell was 44 out of 59 for 419 yards and 4 touchdowns in last year’s matchup, which Tech won 49-9.
That’s it folks, only 9 games this week. A lot of intriguing matchups should make for an interesting weekend for the Big 12. Some tough games to call, in my opinion. could make for a down week after starting off strong. My advice? Never lose faith in the Wang.