Vegas edition - saw Aerosmith last night and still have the iconic voice of Steven Tyler and guitar playing of Joe Perry in my head, so we will "walk this way" and proceed. For being out of town I got to watch a surprising amount of football. There were three notable games so we start there.
Jim Harbaugh attracts attention everywhere and not always positive. His antics energize his own fan bases and irritate the others. Problem is, when you cannot win a statement game, it wears thin. Michigan rolled into Camp Randall and subsequently got rolled by a good Wisconsin team 35-14. The Badgers raced out to a 35 point lead under Heisman candidate RB Jonathan Taylor never looking back. This was a statement win putting Wisconsin in the playoff talk. As for Captain Khaki, I am guessing his agent is reaching out to all of the 0-2 NFL teams as the end has to be near in Ann Arbor (other than running the table).
The Men of the Plains visited Aggieland and JImbo Fisher. Auburn, the ultimate wild card, dominated early with the run for a statement 28-20 win. While A&M had some chances, it was clear Auburn was the better team. They can wreak havoc going forward and with only one loss, make the SEC game in Atlanta. Gus Malzahn wins just when he is about to be run out of town.
Notre Dame went down "tween the hedges" to play them Dawgs, and no one gave them a chance. They held a 10-7 halftime lead, went down 23-10, scored a late TD and had a chance at the end for a 23-17 final. Georgia is loaded, but may be too conservative and they may not be quite as good as thought. Or ND may be better than we thought. Either way, the Irish will need some help in making the playoff.
The rest of the powers cruised. Florida backup Kyle Trask did just fine in his first start since 9th grade (read his story in the Atlantic you will like this guy no matter who you pull for) in beating a bad Tennessee team 34-3. I bet the Gators and the under winning two bets. Florida has a gauntlet of Auburn, LSU and Georgia in October, and they will have to play perfect to win any one of those games.
As for the outsiders crashing the playoff party, ND may be out since they may not have a quality opponent left on their schedule. Utah was the Pac 12's best hope, and they lost to SCal. UCF lost their first regular season game in three years as Pitt ran the "Philly special" to edge them 35-34. Thankfully, no more UCF playoff talk.