GAMES OF THE WEEK

Here are the teams and the themes to follow this weekend
November 14, 2011

NO. 6 OREGON at NO. 3 STANFORD

What we've learned about the Ducks

LaMichael James is fully recovered from the dislocated right elbow he injured on Oct. 6. In a 34--17 win over Washington last Saturday, James, the nation's leading rusher, ran for 156 yards and one TD.

What we've learned about the Cardinal

The D is vulnerable. Against Oregon State, a team with just two wins, Stanford gave up 252 yards passing to redshirt freshman Sean Mannion. The Cardinal still won 38--13.

What it will mean on Saturday

Stanford QB Andrew Luck can virtually lock up the Heisman with a big performance. But the Oregon offense and James will outplay him as the Ducks, who opened as three-point underdogs, pull off a mild upset.

NO. 10 VIRGINIA TECH at NO. 20 GEORGIA TECH

What we've learned about the Hokies

David Wilson, the ACC's leading rusher, is as good as advertised, gaining at least 100 yards in six straight games. He ran for 148 in Tech's surprisingly close 14--10 win over Duke on Oct. 29.

What we've learned about the Yellow Jackets

Tevin Washington is one of the best running quarterbacks in the nation. The triple-option triggerman rushed for 176 yards in Tech's 31--17 win over Clemson two weeks ago.

What it will mean on Saturday

With the conference's Coastal Division title on the line, the most dynamic player on the field—that would be Washington, not Wilson—leads the Yellow Jackets to a win.

NO. 19 NEBRASKA at NO. 12 PENN STATE

What we've learned about the Huskers

An injury-depleted defense was manhandled at the point of attack by the offensive line of Northwestern. The Wildcats generated 468 yards of total offense in a 28--25 upset in Lincoln.

What we've learned about the Nittany Lions

Alive for the Big Ten title game, Penn State spent its bye week trying to fine-tune its sputtering offense, which gained only 209 total yards in an ugly 10--7 win over Illinois on Oct. 29.

What it will mean on Saturday

This low-scoring game will come down to quarterback play. The nod goes to the Huskers and sophomore Taylor Martinez, who had 342 yards of total offense against Northwestern.

TCU at NO. 5 BOISE STATE

What we've learned about the Horned Frogs

The D has not been able to play up to the standard set by recent TCU teams. The unit ranks 61st against the pass and 38th overall, but it limited Wyoming to two touchdowns in a 31--20 win.

What we've learned about the Broncos

In another quietly efficient game, Kellen Moore threw five TDs in a 48--21 win over UNLV. Moore is now the alltime winningest QB in FBS history, with 46 victories, one more than Colt McCoy.

What it will mean on Saturday

The only way TCU extends its Mountain West winning streak to 22 games is by controlling the clock with its ground game and keeping the ball away from Moore. That won't happen. Boise wins by three TDs.

NO. 13 MICHIGAN STATE at IOWA

What we've learned about the Spartans

After struggling for three quarters against Minnesota, QB Kirk Cousins led a rally for a 31--24 win. Cousins, who passed for 296 yards and two TDs, may be the Big Ten's most underappreciated player.

What we've learned about the Hawkeyes

Running back Marcus Coker (left) is a between-the-tackles workhorse who looks like a young Ron Dayne. The 6-foot, 230-pound Coker, a sophomore, ran for 132 yards as Iowa upset Michigan 24--16.

What it will mean on Saturday

Despite playing on the road, where it has lost two games, Legends Division leader Michigan State takes a big step toward the Big Ten title game thanks to another solid effort from Cousins.

PHOTOSTEPHEN MALLY/ICON SMI

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)