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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Feven Getachew
Feven Getachew
May 6, 2024
Michael Lozada
Michael Lozada
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Nathan Hoffman
Nathan Hoffman
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Harvey Wilhelm `24.
Harvey Wilhelm
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Kramer Mcluckie forecasts upcoming football season

By Kramer McLuckie

America’s economy came out tentative. The economy was flat-footed on defense, failed to execute the gameplan, and did not get into a rhythm. To avoid a real shellacking, we have to capitalize on our opportunities and let the game come to us.

This college football season is the same as the economy in several ways—both are driven by arcane, possibly malevolent forces (I’m looking at you, Nick Saban!), both require hours of dedication to understand and both can go to shit in a second. With these compelling similarities in mind, I thought it might be apropos to dispense a little college football advice, which, though it won’t help you make money in the stock market or save that farm that’s been in your family for generations, is guaranteed to provide one session of bathroom entertainment (you choose which kind). 

Each week, I’ll tell you the five teams whose stock is on the rise, five teams for whom question marks remain, and five teams that are pulling a Lehmann Brothers. My picks:

Buy

Boise State: The Broncos continued their record home win streak by shutting down Oregon’s potent offense on The Blue and displaying some offensive firepower of their own. Oregon’s LeGarrette Blount sadly gave his own career a T.K.O. by throwing a punch after the game, which had been chippy throughout. So much for National Sportsmanship Week. 

Oklahoma State: The Pokes were dominant on both sides of the ball against Georgia and won in impressive fashion. They’ll live up to the hype and are BCS bowl-bound. Texas is all that stands in the way of Oklahoma State’s first Big 12 Championship. 

Nebraska: Bo Pelini’s defense is finally living up to all the hype, forcing three interceptions in the third quarter against Florida Atlantic.  The offense didn’t look terrible, either, with tailback Roy Helu rushing for three T.D.s.

Bringham Young: The Cougars’ defense was impressive against Oklahoma, even with Sam Bradford at the helm of the Sooner offense. After Bradford’s injury, the Cougars were totally dominant, allowing only three second-half points. Quarterback Max Hall looks like a legitimate Heisman candidate and BYU looks like a BCS contender. This is my quasi-sleeper pick for national champion, folks. 

Only buy four this week. It’s too early and I’m not going to give you the really obvious picks (“I don’t care what all the haters say, Florida is gonna be good!”). 

Hold

Georgia: Though they were handled at Oklahoma State, the Dawgs are still a talented bunch. Quarterback Joe Cox looked solid against a very good defense.

Virginia Tech: The Hokies played well in their loss to powerhouse Alabama, displaying a dominant defense (as usual) and the kind of special teams that will make up for their enervated offense, which already lost tailback Darren Evans. Now freshman Ryan Williams must step up.

USC: The Trojans have NFL talent at every position, but starting a true freshman quarterback gives me pause.

North Carolina: The Tar Heels’ defense looks great, but I need them to play somebody better than The Citadel before I can buy into an ACC team. 

Notre Dame: The Fighting Irish shut out a very solid Nevada team, but they’ll face a greater challenge this week when they face Michigan in The Big House. That game will give us a good indication of Jimmy Clausen’s abilities, and also which coach will be fired, Charlie Weis or Rich Rodriguez. 

Sell

Oklahoma: Ever see Varsity Blues? Remember when Paul Walker goes down and everybody realizes that the quarterback just became James Van Der Beek? Welcome to the world of Bob Stoops. Even before Sam Bradford left the game, Oklahoma struggled to move the ball and played sloppily against BYU. It’s Bank of America with no Merrill Lynch. 

Oregon: Even with Blount on the field, the Ducks weren’t moving the ball. Their defense looked stout, but the offense failed to gain a first down in the first half. 

Iowa: The Hawkeyes beat Division 1-AA Northern Iowa by a single point only through miraculously blocking two field goal attempts. Not a good sign. 

Ole Miss: The Rebels put up a lot of points in their win over Conference-USA opponent Memphis, but only after a slow start in which quarterback Jevan Snead threw two interceptions.  He’s got a lot of rust to shake off before he’s ready to face speedy SEC secondaries.

Ohio State: The Buckeyes needed a last-second interception to hold on at home against Navy. That isn’t going to fly against a much better USC defense featuring star safety Taylor Mays. 


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