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Overrated and Underrated Teams
by Scott Spreitzer - 10/11/2011
Each week throughout the college football season, Scott will dissect the new top-25 rankings on Monday evenings and post what he feels is the week's most overrated top-25 team, along with the most underrated team, and an unranked team that he feels should be in the top-25.
MOST OVERRATED TOP-25 TEAM: Texas Longhorns
Usually when I write about an overrated, yet ranked team, I pick a team in the top-15. But I feel the top-15 is pretty solid this week, other than the fact Stanford is still underrated. But in their case, I can understand why six teams are ranked higher than the Cardinal. Texas, however, does not belong in the top-25. I mentioned on a TV show before their game with OU that the Red River Rivalry was likely to become the Red River Blood-letting...and it did. Texas has no passing game. It caught up with them (among other things) against Oklahoma and will catch up with them down the road against decent competition. The Longhorns are 75th in the nation in passing offense and teams will be able to load-up against the ground game, forcing the onus of the offense onto the shoulders of its young signal callers. Beating Rice, BYU, UCLA, and Iowa State, are not qualifications for breaking into the rankings. And the way they got bombed by OU simply proves my point. The Longhorns better right the ship quickly with the high-flying Oklahoma State Cowboys coming to Austin this weekend. Texas is this week's Most Overrated Top-25 team.
MOST UNDERRATED TOP-25 TEAM: Stanford Cardinal
We have to put Stanford in this position again. Yes, you will hear some saying that the Cardinal haven't played the most difficult schedule so far. But they simply don't let up. Only two teams in the top-10 can say they are in the top 10 in total offense, total defense, and scoring offense and defense. Arkansas & Stanford are those teams. Everyone knows about next year's #1 pick in the NFL draft, Andrew Luck. But this team is also loaded at receiver. No less than five receivers have between 12 and 25 receptions this season and four of them average more than 12 yards per reception. Very few talk about the Cardinal defense. They fly after the ball and don't miss tackles. This team is 20th in total defense, 2nd against the run, and 6th in ppg allowed (10.6). As I said last time I posted Stanford in this slot: This team is about as balanced as it gets and I'll be shocked if they aren't 7-0 when they play at USC in late October. I believe Stanford has every right to be in the top-5, but apparently the pollsters don't feel the same way. Good thing we don't care what the pollsters think! Stanford is this week's most underrated team.
UNRANKED TEAM THAT SHOULD BE RANKED: Notre Dame & Georgia
We have called for both of these teams to be ranked in the top-25 over the past few weeks and nothing has changed. Notre Dame is tearing teams up now that they have learned to hang onto the football. The Irish gave away their first two games, but have won four in a row over Michigan State, Pittsburgh, Purdue, and Air Force, by an average margin of 18.8 ppg. It seems the only time we hear about Georgia on the networks is when there's a discussion about coaches on the hot seat. But Mark Richt is better than he's given credit for and all his team has done is win four straight games, including double-digit wins over Ole Miss and Mississippi State, to go along with last week's win in Knoxville. UGA has held those three SEC teams to an average of 225.3 total yards per game on just 3.63 yards per play! Next up is a road game at Vandy before a bye week. UGA should enter their Ocotber 29 game with Florida on a 5-game win streak. Georgia & Notre Dame are two teams that should be ranked in this week's polls.