What I Learned This Weekend

1. The polls are essentially meaningless at this point in the season. Ranked teams that played unranked teams were 6-9 ATS this week. Five of those ranked teams lost their games despite being double digit favorites. The lower ranked team won both games played between ranked teams.

2. I know this doesn’t mean much because I previously said I was confident that USC was the best team in the country, but I am confident that Oklahoma is the best team in the country. Sam Bradford decimated a stout TCU defense, and the team has the swagger of a team that is good and knows it. Many would argue that Alabama is better. I can’t dispute how good they looked against Georgia, but I haven’t felt good about the Bulldogs since before this season started, and Alabama is so far ahead of where I expected them to be right now, that I need to wait to see a bit more from them before I am confident that they are as good as they look.

3. I am not sure how my beloved Michigan beat Wisconsin after getting just 21 yards on offense, and I don’t want to examine what it means about the Big Ten too closely, but I sure like it. The stunning halftime adjustment was truly impressive, and a bright sign of a happy future in the Rich Rodriguez era.

4. Tim Tebow will not win two Heisman’s, but Terrelle Pryor just might given the way he has started. He couldn’t get much going through the air on Saturday, so he did it on the ground. Scary.

5. I am endlessly fascinated by how a guy like John Parker Wilson can be just barely average for three years and can suddenly look like Joe Montana as a senior. Confidence is a strange thing. And having Julio Jones to throw to certainly doesn’t hurt in this case.

6. I don’t know how a guy like Mike Shanahan has managed to be in the NFL for as long as he has without learning that at least a little attention to defense is a good thing. The Broncos play very solid offense, but they are bad as it is possible to be on the other side of the ball. They made the Chiefs look like last year’s Patriots. It will be a while before I trust that Denver team again.

7. The Favre performance was impressive, and I can’t take anything away from it, but it never would have happened if Kurt Warner were even sort of capable of protecting the ball. I don’t understand how a guy like Warner can pass so well but totally turn his brain off otherwise. I like Warner a lot, but I am beginning to think that the time for the Leinart era is here.

8. I like Carolina. Quite a lot.

9. I’m thinking it might be time for me to start believing in the Titans. I still don’t get it, but it is getting harder and harder to deny it. It’s not just that they are winning, but that they are covering with ease. I guess that that tells us that I’m not the only one who has had trouble coming to terms with the team.

10. The most impressive performance in a loss this week was Matt Schaub. His job was in serious jeopardy, with fans and the media calling for Sage Rosenfels, yet he stepped up huge. He completed almost three quarters of his pases for 307 yards and three touchdowns against a decent Jacksonville defense, and he continued to develop a promising relationship with Steve Slaton. The Texans still lost, and their season is in danger of becoming a real disappointment, but I liked what Schaub showed.

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