College Football 2011: Conference Play Arrives as Schools Continue to Depart Ways

ACC and Pac 12 Logos

By Cabrone D. Brewer

College Football is no stranger to basking in the media spotlight once fall rolls around, but the light hasn’t been quite this blinding in recent memory.

With a number of schools scheduled to begin conference play Saturday, the focus of the young season once again shifted from the field to the administration office earlier this week after Syracuse and Pittsburgh both announced that they would be ditching the Big East for the ACC.

The move by two of the Big East’s more prominent tenants was a surprise to say the least, as most of the week’s realignment talks centered on Oklahoma and Texas’ Pac-12 membership inquiry — a request that was ultimately silenced when Pac-12 officials decided not to expand the conference any further at this time.

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College Football Top 5 Non-Conference Games to Watch

The following five games are ones believed will have the biggest impact on the season, and more importantly, be the most entertaining for fans. Several that didn’t make the list include Oklahoma-Miami, Florida-Florida St., and USC-Notre Dame.

college football5. Utah @ Oregon, Sept. 19th

Utah had a huge Sugar Bowl win over Alabama, and is coming off an undefeated season. This game will be Utah’s one chance this season to show what it’s made of outside the conference, while Oregon will have already played Boise State. If the Ducks beat Boise, this game will launch a potential top-10 team into conference play. If the Ducks lose to Boise, this game will be even bigger; it would be a must-win to keep the Ducks BCS hopes alive.

4. Oregon @ Boise State, Sept. 5th

Last season Boise State won a 37-32 thriller against the Ducks. This season, Oregon is considered a top 10-15 team and the Pac-10’s best chance to knock USC from the top of the conference, so a Duck win here would be huge. Jeremiah Masoli and LeGarrette Blount will lead a strong Oregon team, but Boise State “is loaded and a legit BCS threat. If the Broncos can get another big win over Oregon to open the season, they will be primed for another undefeated run and a shot at a BCS bowl.” Read the rest of this entry »

Overdue National Notoriety for ACC’s College Football Elite

acc footballDespite the size of crowds that Florida State University coach Bobby Bowden can draw, it has been a decade since FSU, a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference or ACC, has won the national championship. What’s more, is it’s been nine seasons since a conference team (also FSU) played in the title game. Before Virginia Tech defeated Cincinnati in January at the FedEx Orange Bowl, the ACC hadn’t even won a BCS bowl game this century.

“But if the Chicago Cubs – who haven’t won a World Series since 1908 – can dream, so can the ACC.”

The addition of Virginia Tech and Miami in 2004 and then with Boston College in 2005, the ACC was supposed to become college football’s bully. Instead, it became a national punching bag. Read the rest of this entry »


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