Posted September 5th, 2006 by Matt
Filed under: Football

Bruce Ciskie is hosting this weeks Blogpoll Roundtable. The focus is all about how teams performed against your expectations. Here is how I saw everything break down:

1. What team best met your overall expectations of them in their opener?

I am going to go with Ohio State here. They showed me everything I expected out of their team. They are loaded with offensive weapons and can put points up in a hurry. Troy Smith to Ted Ginn, Jr. looks like a deadly combination. And their new running back Chris Wells may help them to forget about Maurice Clarett.

But they also showed some weakness on defense, which is what I would expect when you lose 9 starters on defense. NIU’s Garrett Wolfe went off for 171 yards rushing on 26 carries and 114 yards receiving on 5 receptions. This makes me feel a little bit better about Texas being able to move the ball against their defense.

2. What team jumped off the map and surprised you the most? (Bonus points to anyone who can make an argument for someone besides Tennessee.)

Well since I cannot pick Tennessee I am going to go with Oregon. I mean as ugly are their uniforms are, how could anyone expect them to win by 38 over Pac-10 rival Stanford? Seriously though, this was one of the more shocking scores that I saw all day. And anytime you see a Pac-10 defense only allow 10 points, that has to be the surprise of the day.

It also looks like Jonathan Stewart wasn’t kidding when he said he was going to have a big season this year. Stewart rushed for 168 yards and 2 touchdowns before leaving the game with an ankle sprain. He ran for only 188 yards all of last season!

As weak as the Pac-10 is this year, Oregon might be a team to watch in that conference.

3. What team best moved themselves into a position to surprisingly contend for a national title?

I guess Tennessee is the obvious choice here. With their dominate performance over Cal they have shot themselves into the title race. And they probably have one of the easier schedules left in the SEC too.

They get LSU at home and wouldn’t have to play Auburn until possibly the SEC title game. I seriously doubt that Ainge will continue to put up huge numbers, but with the defense playing how they did on Saturday they should put themselves in plenty of situations to win ball games.


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