College Game Previews Week 12

November 18, 2016

OKLAHOMA STATE (8-2) by 5 @ TCU (5-4); NOON ET; FS1
State should be 9-1, but for officiating blunders and TCU lost 2 of its games by 3 points. TCU can stay in this one thanks in great part to having home field, and the improved QB play of KENNY HILL. But the fighting GUNDY’s are well balanced, have a top notch QB in MASON RUDOLPH and are tough as nails. Both teams can both run and pass, and play some tough D. If State wins they face a showdown for the championship of both the Big 12 and the state of Oklahoma, when they play the Sooners in 2 weeks. There is also a goodly amount of potential NFL talent to watch. Prospects to watch:

OKLAHOMA STATE                                                   TCU
#2 MASON RUDOLPH/QB 6’5/235 JR                      #21 KYLE HICKS/RB 5’10/200 JR
#28 JAMES WASHINGTON/WR 6’/208 JR            #94 JOSH CARRAWAY/DE/ER 6’4/250
#47 BLAKE JARWIN/TE 6’5/248                               #95 AARON CURRY/DT 6’2/280
#40 DEVANTE AVERETTE/ILB 5’11/230                #40 JAMES McFARLAND/DE/O 6’3/255
#6 ASHTON LAMPKIN/CB 6’0/190                          #30 DENZEL JOHNSON/SS 6’2/205
#13 JORDAN STERNS/S 6’0/200

Raise your hand if you suspected early last September that this would be a featured showdown game in the PAC-12 come November. All you liars with your hands up please leave the room. Both of these teams are legit and could end up in the New Years Bowl groupings. After starting 0-2 MIKE LEACH righted the ship and his team has won 8 straight and now currently lead the conference’s northern division. Junior QB LUKE FALK is gaining steam and could actually end up in Heisman consideration if he puts up big passing numbers in the final two games. Unfortunately, Falk will be missing one of his favorite targets in RIVER CRACRAFT who blew out a knee last weekend against CAL, but will have Gabe Marks who last week became the Pac-12’s all-time leading receiver. Colorado, which is in the driver’s seat in the Pac-12 South division, has been an even bigger surprise this year with multi-dimensional SEFO LIUFAU/QB leading the offense and a stout D which has held 5 opponents to 10 or less points this season. It warms the cockles of my heart to see two surprise teams like this have success this season. I’ll take the home team, but if FALK stays hot watch out. Prospects to watch:

WASHINGTON STATE                                                  COLORADO
#4 LUKE FALK/QB 6’4/215 JR                                           #13 SEFO LIUFAU/QB 6’4/230
#9 GABE MARKS/WR 6’0/188                                           #81 SEAN IRWIN/TE 6’3/255
#92 ROBERT BARBER/DT 6’3/309                                  #55 JOSH TUPPOU/NT 6’3/330
#18 SHALOM LUANI/FS 6’0/198                                      #98 JIMMIE GILBERT/OLB 6’5/225
#47 PEYTON PELLUER/LB 6’0/229 JR                            #4 CHIDOBE AWUZIE/CB 6’0/205
#58 RILEY SORENSON/OC 6’4/327                                   #9 TETRIC THOMPSON/SS 6’0/205
#76 CODY O’CONNELL/OG/6-7/355/JR

Unapologetically, I will take the home team, the Mountaineers, in what amounts to an elimination game in the Big XII. I feel that WVU simply has a better balanced team this year and the Sooners D has been all but MIA this season. The cold night air in the mountains of West Virginia are not going to help the Sooners much either. Bobby Stoops has rallied his troops after a 1-2 start, but those losses were to HOUSTON and OHIO STATE. WVA surprised more than a few folks last week by going to Austin and beating a sound Longhorn team. IF West Virginia can get past this one they have a solid chance to survive the season with 1 loss, which should put them in the Top 10. This game should be intense and highly competitive. Hard to tell what kind of mood the Sooners locker room will be in after DE/CHARLES WALKER’s program defection to prepare for the 2017 NFL Draft.
Prospects to watch:

OKLAHOMA                                                                         WEST VIRGINIA
#6 BAKER MAYFIELD/QB 6’1/212                                       #7 RUSHEL SHELL/RB 5’11/220
#32 SAMAJE PERINE/RB 5’11/234 JR                                #6 DAKIEL SHORTS/WR 6’1/204
#5 GENO LEWIS/WR 6’1/201                                               #65 TERRY ORLOSKY/OC 6’4/295
#11 DEDE WESTBROOK/WR 6’0/170                                #57 ADAM PANKEY/OG/T 6’5/316
#26 JORDAN EVANS/LB 6’2/233                                       #97 NOBLE NWACHUKWU/DE 6’2/275
#13 AHMAD THOMAS/S 6’1/210                                         #13 RASUL DOUGLAS/CB 6’2/208

SOUTHERN CAL (7-3) by @ UCLA (4-6); 10:30 PM ET; ESPN
Due to injuries UCLA has had a dismal season. But they have been competitive even in some of their losses. Plus, let us not forget that this is a SoCal rivalry with lots of talent on hand. Most of all it’s about a Trojans team that has risen like a rocket with the installation of RS Frosh QB Sam Darnold/#14. The kid who looks like a left coast LI’l ABNER has been unbeatable as their starter for the past month plus. Minus their super soph QB/JOSH ROSEN the Bruins are struggling to find a rhythm, but this series history is full of upset wins and it would be a big deal for pride and recruiting if JIM MORA’s troops could rally past USC. Not this time! A potentially great match-up within the game for you Draftniks to watch could be Edge-rusher McKINLEY/#98 of UCLA going up against the Trojans OT tandem of BANNER/373 & WHEELER/#72. Prospects to watch:

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA                                               UCLA
#22 JUSTIN DAVIS/RB 6’1/195                                               #32 NATE IESE/FB/TE 6’3/250
#1 DARREUS ROGERS/WR 6’1/215                                       #68 CONOR McDERMOTT/OT 6’8/310
#9 JUJU SMITH-SCHUSTER/WR 6’2/215 JR                     #47 EDDIE VANDERDOES/DT 6’3/305
#73 ZACH BANNER/OT 6’9/340                                            #98 TAKKARIST McKINLEY/DE/ER 6’2/265
#72 CHAD WHEELER/OT 6’6/300                                         #9 MARCUS RIOS/CB 5’11/195
#2 ADOREE’ JACKSON/CB/RS 5’11/185 JR                         #10 FABIAN MOREAU/CB 6’0/200
#22 LEON McQUAY/FS 6’1/190                                                #3 RANDALL GOFORTH/S 5’10 190

Enjoy your college football day.