Games that Matter: Rooting Guide for Week 10

During this week’s trip to Vegas, I’ll be keeping my eye on Mr. Badger. Whenever he gets around betting parlors during football season, he starts frothing at the mouth. Mr. Badger will gamble away just about anything so long as he can take his Broncos. I’ve seen him give point spreads in the hundreds just to satiate his hunger. Needless to say, I’ll be taking precautionary measures to ensure Mr. Badger does not gamble away our return trip. Like convincing him my Albertsons’ Points Card is a Casino Points Card that he can use to his heart’s content. (Just don't tell the dogs.)


Join me and Mr. Badger after the jump as we go review the games worth watching in Week 10.

There are a few categories of games to watch:

1. Opponents

Root for them to win. The better our opponents fare, the better we look.

2. Unbeatens

Root for them to lose. While it is a long shot… playing in the National Championship Game is a definite possibility.

3. Other Guys

Root for them somehow. For one reason or another, Boise State has a rooting interest in these games.

The games are put in order of time, with the best games first within each time slot.

6 PM

**** 4 Stars ****

Tulsa (5-3, 4-0 C-USA) at UCF (4-4, 2-2 C-USA)

TV: CBS Sports Network

Root for: Tulsa

A Thursday night game that’s not on ESPN? What’s going on here? At any rate the Golden Hurricane roll into Orlando intent on keeping their C-USA Championship hopes alive. Both teams are coming off big wins: Tulsa took down SMU in dominating fashion last week, while UCF dismantled Memphis 41-0. Someone’s gonna get to party with Mickey Thursday night. Let’s hope it’s our Golden Hurricane.


Should Tulsa beat UCF, their conference record will improve to 5-0, setting up a potential showdown of "conference undefeateds" with Houston at the end of the regular season.

10:30 AM

* 1 Star *

(18) Georgia (6-2) vs New Mexico State (3-5)

Coverage: ESPN3

Root for: Georgia

After getting an ugly win against Florida, the Bulldogs get a scrimmage against New Mexico State before facing Auburn the following Saturday. As usual, the Georgia Drama continues. In this week’s episode, it's…

The Tale of the Tailbacks

Seems three of Georgia’s top running backs got a little too rowdy during their current winning streak (6 games) and raised the suspicion of their coaches. A mandated drug test or two later and Bingo-Bango, they’re… Busted! Having to sit three running backs would normally cripple a team’s chances of winning, but this is New Mexico State we’re talking about. Expect a blowout as usual.

What makes this tale particularly intriguing is that there were rumors last week (prior to the Florida game) that these three failed the pee test. But their suspensions didn’t come down until this week, when their particular opponent could be single-handedly beaten by the Bulldogs’ Water Boy.


Coach Richt adamantly denies such allegations, insisting his Bulldogs follow their "rules to a T" and have always used the "utmost integrity" in how these rules are applied. It’s what he didn’t say that continues to raise eyebrows: whether they knew of the results prior to the Florida game. Details, shmetails.

Adding to the running back woes, Fullback sensation Richard Samuel – the punishing back who has begun to pound the rock with more and more frequency – fractured his ankle during the final play of the Florida game. He had surgery on Tuesday and will be out four weeks (the rest of the regular season). Should the Bulldogs make the SEC Championship game, his ability to play will be questionable.


*** 3 Stars ***

TCU (6-2, 3-0 MWC) at Wyoming (5-2, 2-0 MWC)


Root for: TCU

Off to their best start since 1998, Wyoming is the MWC’s surprise team of the season. Their only two losses are to Nebraska and Utah State. They beat San Diego State last week, thus planting a stake in the ground that these ain’t your daddy’s Cowboys.


Unfortunately for the Cowboys, TCU won’t be surprised after watching the Cowboys take down the Aztecs last week. Mr. Badger thinks this is where Wyoming's luck runs out as TCU looks to extend its conference winning streak to a MWC record 21 games. Here’s hoping our Broncos are the ones to put an end to TCU's streak instead.

1:30 PM

***** 5 Stars *****

(6) Oklahoma (7-1, 4-1 Big12) vs Texas A&M (5-3, 3-2 Big12)


Root for: Texas A&M

Oklahoma’s barely behind us in the rankings. As if we didn’t have enough to worry about with the teams above us that are undefeated, we also have to worry about teams behind us that are not undefeated. Only in America.

The Aggies should put up a fight against the Sooners. At this point in the season, players get tired, and monotony starts to set in. It gets harder and harder to keep troops motivated. One week runs into the next, and it’s easy to overlook a 3-loss team. Especially when you just got done with a highly-anticipated matchup the week prior and are doing all you can not to think about the season-ending, winner-take-all game against instate rival OkieState.

If the Sooners aren’t careful, they could find themselves with 2 losses by the end of this game. Of the Aggies' three losses, two have been to top-10 teams, and the third was in OT. Mr. Badger is really hopin' the Aggies take Bob’s Big Boys out to the woodshed. Cause that’d be one less team to worry about.


Oklahoma's linemen aren't quite this big. But they are as fat.

*** 3 Stars ***

Air Force (4-4) vs Army (3-5)


Root for: Air Force

Should Air Force beat Army, they will take home the Commander-in-Chief’s trophy for the second year in a row (Navy owned it from 2003 – 2009). Nothing motivates the cadets more than facing their fellow servicemen. Expect a hard-fought battle, and root for those Falcons.


President Bush fantasizes about a chocolate trophy

** 2 Stars **

(4) Stanford (8-0, 6-0 PAC12) at Oregon State (2-6, 2-3 PAC12)


Root for: Oregon State

Mr. Badger’s still trying to get over last week’s last-minute collapse by the USC defense (or was it the PAC-12 officials?). Either way, Lane Kiffin is definitely not on Mr. Badger’s Christmas Card list this year. And with all that squawking about bad officiating, he’s not on Santa’s "Nice List" either.


Andrew Luck pulled a Zabransky in the final minutes, but will almost certainly win the Heisman anyways because he’s "not from Boise State". Can you imagine the outrage if Kellen had done such a thing? Mr. Badger says he needs a Tums just thinking of it.


The Beavs started out the year with a loss to FCS Sacramento State, and it hasn’t gotten much better from there. They’ve somehow managed to get two wins, but don’t expect any more. They’ve scored the fewest touchdowns in the PAC-12 (18) and QB Sean Mannion holds an ignoble record through 9 weeks: most INTs of all FBS QBs (13).

If there’s any hope for an upset, it’s that Luck has yet to win a game in the state of Oregon (0-2), and this is the classic trap game (between USC and Oregon). Stranger things have happened. Go Beavers!

5:15 PM

***** 5 Stars *****

(7) Arkansas (7-1, 3-1 SEC) vs (9) South Carolina (7-1, 5-1 SEC)


Root for: Arkansas

Normally, Mr. Badger would root for the lower seed to win. But in this case, everything's all goofed-around. First, there’s the fact that the Razorbacks really didn't win a number of games so much as were handed their victories. Then, there’s the fact that the Gamecocks could steal our Bulldogs’ chances of an SEC East title by winning out.

Without RB Stud Marcus Lattimore (season-ending knee injury) and a system of musical Quarterbacks, the Gamecocks offense has been hobbled in recent weeks.


But don’t expect the Gamecocks' weakened O to mean they will roll over and submit. Behind the SEC’s third-best defense (behind LSU & Alabama), the Gamecocks are still winning. And this week, they get back two cornerbacks (injuries) as well. So don’t be surprised if they manage to beat the Razorbacks.

In the name of all that is good, please don’t let that happen however. Go Backs!

6 PM

***** 5 Stars *****

(3) Oklahoma State (8-0, 5-0 Big12) vs (14) Kansas State (7-1, 4-1 Big 12)


Root for: Kansas State

If Boise State has a chance at the NCG, Okie State’s gotta lose one of its next two games (hopefully in convincing fashion) and then beat Oklahoma for good measure. So in the theme of hatin’ em and lovin’ em at the same time, Mr. Badger says he has something for all of us to think about. He says he just thought of it.

"Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

Wow. That's quite a quote Mr. Badger. Really gives us something to think about. I'm impressed.... Waaaaait a minute, though. Now that I think about it, isn't that one of Martin Luther King Jr.'s quotes you've had to memorize as part of your History lessons?

There he goes… scampering into his burrow without a sound. I think we have our answer.


**** 4 Stars ****

(1) LSU (8-0, 5-0 SEC) at (2) Alabama (8-0, 5-0 SEC)


Root for: Alabama

One of these teams is gonna lose. And that’s all that really matters. But if you had to pick a pony, Mr. Badger says go with the Tide. A loss by the Tigers would minimize Oregon’s Strength of Schedule, which might allow our Broncos to stay ahead of them in the standings. Plus, assuming we don’t make the NCG, our chances of getting matched up with an SEC team are greater with LSU than with Alabama. No one wants to see LSU vs Oregon or or LSU vs West Virginia again.


8:30 PM

***** 5 Stars *****

(5) Boise State (7-0, 2-0) at UNLV (2-5, 1-1 MWC)

TV: CBS Sports Network

Root for: Good Guys

Despite the heavy spread, expect our Broncos to show up ready to play. Playing up to your potential is the name of the game for Coach Pete. (Playing down to your opponents is the name of the game for Pat Hill.)


Pat Hill laments his lack of a game plan yet again

If you can’t be at the game, save your vocal chords for next Saturday – when our Boys in Blue will need all the support they can get as they battle TCU, last year’s undefeated Rose Bowl Champions. But like Coach Pete says, never look ahead!

**** 4 Stars ****

(8) Oregon (7-1, 5-0 PAC 12) at Washington (6-2, 4-1 PAC 12)

TV: Fox Sports Network

Root for: Washington

In the best of all PAC12 worlds, Washington would beat Oregon this week, and the Ducks would return the favor next week against the Cardinal. Funny all this love-hate stuff isn’t it Mr. Badger?

Oh, he’s got another "wise quote" apparently…

I hate everything about you
Why do I love you?

Hmmm Mr. Badger, I’m not sure how that’s supposed to help us. It seems a little harsh don’t you think? And hey… now that I think about it – isn’t that one of the lyrics from that Three Days Grace band you’ve been incessantly listening to on the radio?


Whoosh! There he goes again. Boy, he’s a quick one when he wants to be.

**** 4 Stars ****

Fresno State (3-5, 2-1WAC) vs Louisiana Tech (4-4, 3-1WAC)


Root for: Fresno State

The Fresno Bulldogs will need every bit of Moustache Mojo they can get out of Pat Hill’s leadership when they face the "other" WAC Bulldogs.


LaTech – like most WAC/WAC2.0 schools – has had a tantalizingly close season thus far. Three of their four losses were to #25 Southern Miss (2 points), #13 Houston (1 point), and SEC’s Miss State (in OT). So close, but so far away. The fourth loss was to Hawaii. No, there’s really no explaining that.

6 PM

**** 4 Stars ****

Toledo (5-4, 4-1 MAC) vs Western Michigan (5-4, 3-2 MAC)


Root for: Toledo

After playing a game of "whoever has the ball last wins" against Northern Illinois, Toledo jumps back in the saddle for another Tuesday night game: this time against Western Michigan.


While Toledo missed its chance to control its own MAC Conference Championship destiny by running out of time against Northern Illinois, they still have a chance to come out on top. So for all you "scoreboard watchers" out there, you’ll want to pay attention to the Huskies’ final games this year as well. Should the NIU Huskies drop one – and the Rockets win out – it will be Toledo in the MAC Championship game after all.

** 2 Stars **

Northern Illinois (6-3, 4-1 MAC) at Bowling Green (4-5, 2-3 MAC)


Root for: Bowling Green

Luckily for us, Toledo and Northern Illinois play their games at the same time this week (6PM Tues). I’m not sure how that’s gonna work out for the 99% of us that don’t get ESPNU, but I’m assuming your local "we get every sports feed in the world" sports pub can satiate your viewing needs.

Confused about cheer during these simulcasts? Not to worry. Mr. Badger has created a sign for you to hold at the pub.


Well, that about wraps it up for this week. Happy Watching! And Go Broncos!


This content was not created by OBNUG and therefore may not meet our standards. On the contrary, it probably exceeds them.

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