College football Week 11 reaction: Oklahoma played with fire once too often

Oklahoma Sooners QB Spencer Rattler is tackled by the Baylor Bears
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Ricky Dimon

NCAAF· 3 weeks ago

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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

When you play with fire too many times, eventually you are going to get burned. That’s what happened to Oklahoma on Saturday, when the Sooners suffered their first loss of the season at the hands of Baylor. You know who didn’t get hit with their first loss of the season? The Georgia Bulldogs! Top-ranked UGA was tested early by Tennessee, but quickly pulled away in emphatic fashion.

Let’s reflect on what transpired this week on the college football gridiron and what it means moving forward.

Boomer Sooner goes bust

Heading into Week 11, Oklahoma had posted single-digit wins over Tulane, Nebraska, West Virginia, Kansas State, and Texas. The Sooners also trailed Kansas 17-14 in the fourth quarter before managing to prevail 35-23. None of that would have mattered if OU had gone undefeated, because this team would have made the College Football Playoff as the Big 12 champion with a zero in the loss column regardless of the style points, or lack thereof.

But when you are a 1-loss team, you need all the style points you can get. And a 1-loss team is exactly what the Sooners are following their 27-14 setback at Baylor. Backup-turned-starter Caleb Williams threw for just 146 yards and was picked off twice.

Williams has plunged to +3000 in the Heisman Trophy race, while Oklahoma is now +3000 to win the National Championship.

UT couldn’t beat Georgia, and neither can anyone else

I knew before the game started that Tennessee wouldn’t cover a +20 spread and I knew it even after the Volunteers took early leads of 7-3 and 10-7. You see, just about anyone can score once or twice on Georgia. No one can score on Georgia with sustained success.

As expected, the Bulldogs reeled off 34 unanswered points to storm ahead 41-10 en route to a 41-17 victory. The Volunteers at least managed to become the first opponent this season to pin more than 13 points on UGA, but they were stuck on 10 almost the entire way before scoring in garbage time.

Tennessee’s offense is stellar; Georgia made it look pedestrian at best and inept at worst. Maybe Alabama or Ohio State could reach the 20-point mark against the Dawgs, but only if they’re lucky. And 20 wouldn’t be enough to win, anyway.

UGA is still -110 to win the national title, and betting this team against the field is a bet you should make right now.

Stroud creating a stir in Heisman Trophy race

For a race far more interesting than that for the National Championship, we turn to the Heisman Trophy. Four different players are +550 or better to lift the stiff-armed statue, from Alabama quarterback Bryce Young down to Ole Miss signal-caller Matt Corral. Ohio State QB CJ Stroud has surged to +300 following his dominant performance against Purdue on Saturday.

Stroud completed 31 of 38 passes for 361 yards with 5 TDs and zero INTs in a 59-31 defeat of the Boilermakers. He is probably one more outstanding effort against Michigan and a Georgia victory over Young’s Alabama squad in the SEC Championship from becoming the Heisman favorite. Get him as a +300 third choice while you still can.

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