*Missouri still hasn't proved it's ready for the big time.
Much was made coming into the season of the Mizzou's newfound defensive strength. Juice Williams throwing all over the Tigers' supposedly stellar secondary belied a different truth. The Missouri defense certainly came up with clutch plays when called upon, but there was nothing on display in St. Louis to make observers think the Tiger defense is anything special. The D is going to have to stiffen up if coach Gary Pinkel refuses to alter his offensive philosophy. The Tigers' inability to put the Illini exemplified the biggest weakness of an otherwise potent offensive attack. Mizzou's spread is designed for big plays and a fast tempo. It works well until you're trying to salt away a tight game in the fourth quarter. For evidence, look no farther than the Tigers' fourth down attempt late in last night's game, a shotgun draw play Illinois stuffed with ease.
*Clemson's current coaching regime can't cut it.
The coaching matchup between Nick Saban and Tommy Bowden on Saturday night turned out to be an even bigger mismatch than expected. Saban and his staff drew up a game plan that rendered Clemson's touted offense completely impotent, as the only touchdown scored by the Tigers came on a CJ Spiller kickoff return. On top of that, a defense returning eight starters from 2007's solid unit got pushed all over the field by a Bama attack that didn't show much pop last year. It looked like Bowden's defensive staff couldn't be bothered to draw up something new after all the hard work required to put their scheme together in the offseason.
*The QB issue at LSU has been decided.
At least one would think so. Appalachian State didn't put up much of a fight against the Tigers, as LSU's backs ran wild from their very first offensive play. Hatch, however, appeared to possess a far greater command of the Tiger offense, efficiently implementing Gary Crowton's attack. Redshirt freshman Jarrett Lee, on the other hand, was undone by a very poor first half interception.
*Doctors be damned, yesterday's injuries definitely should concern Ohio State and Mizzou fans.
The medical staffs at Ohio St. and Mizzou were quick to concluded that the injuries sustained by Beanie Wells and Jeremy Maclin weren't serious. Both looked like the kind of ankle injuries that could linger for a whole season, putting Wells and Maclin in that weird category of will-he-or-won't-he-play for a good part of the year. Having watched Adrian Peterson drift through his sophomore season in that boat, the temptation to play these two before they're ready to go is probably pretty strong in Columbus and Columbia. Still, with a visit from Ohio standing in between the trip to USC in a couple weeks, coach Jim Tressel would be crazy to let Wells anywhere near the field this week. Maclin could probably afford to sit a couple weeks until the Tigers start conference play.