College football Week 5 reaction: Just fast forward to Alabama vs Georgia?

Sep 11, 2021; Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
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It’s not like Alabama and Georgia had to make a statement on Saturday. We already knew they were the best teams in college football.

But for good measure, statements are exactly what they made. No. 1 Alabama destroyed No. 12 Ole Miss 42-21 and No. 2 Georgia embarrassed No. 8 Arkansas 37-0. The Crimson Tide’s 21-point beatdown was even less competitive than the score suggests, as they led 28-0 by halftime. Another dominant defensive performance by the Bulldogs saw Arkansas gain 162 total yards of offense. That game was 21-0 by the end of the first quarter.

Let’s break down what happened on the college football gridiron in Week 5.


It’s lonely at the top

Should we just fast forward to Alabama vs Georgia in the SEC Championship? Heck, these 2 teams are so good that it probably won’t even matter who wins that game. Maybe we should skip the conference festivities and fast forward all the way to the National Championship?

Then again, I wouldn’t want to miss all of the entertainment on offer elsewhere around the country. Results like Cincinnati going into South Bend and beating Notre Dame in addition to Oregon losing in overtime at Stanford are fun. Do they have national title implications? Maybe; maybe not. But they definitely are the kinds of things you don’t want to miss.

So we won’t fast forward the season. But we will start to daydream about Alabama-Georgia I and even Alabama-Georgia II. As mentioned above, if the 2 SEC powerhouses reach the conference championship game undefeated even the loser will be headed to the College Football Playoff—probably even as the No. 2 overall seed.

And there’s no reason to think they won’t get to the SEC Championship undefeated. Even if there was steep competition, the Tide and Dawgs would likely be too good. And there may not be. Consider the other 4 ranked teams in the SEC West along with Alabama. Ole Miss’ challenge came and went. We saw what happened when Arkansas faced an elite opponent. Texas A&M is 0-2 in the conference following its 26-22 home loss to Mississippi State. Auburn almost lost to Georgia State last weekend and barely beat LSU on Saturday. In the East, Florida was thought to be UGA’s biggest threat. But the 10th-ranked Gators lost to Kentucky!

Get your popcorn ready for Dec. 4 in Atlanta. And then get it ready for the rematch.

Who’s No. 3?

With Oregon going down, there will be a new No. 3 team in the nation. Penn State was 4th (AP poll) and it took care of Indiana 24-0. Iowa was 5th and it annihilated Maryland 51-14. It really doesn’t matter who is No. 3 this week, because Penn State and Iowa are going head-to-head next weekend. That will decide it.

Interestingly, though, it is No. 11 Ohio State with the third-best odds to win it all (+1000, while Alabama is +150 and Georgia is +175). The Buckeyes will move up to at least No. 8 thanks to setbacks for Arkansas, Notre Dame, and Florida, but their loss to Oregon earlier in the season certainly doesn’t look any better now.

Cincinnati should move up to No. 5 and its hardest regular-season game is now out of the way. At first glance the Bearcats are somewhat tempting at +2500 because their path to the College Football Playoff is clear and once you get in, anything can happen.

But then you remember just how good Alabama and Georgia are, and you realize you can’t bet on anyone else.

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