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CFB Insider

A look at what happened last week, TaxAct Texas Bowl projections and a look ahead to another tremendous weekend in CFB for week 12.

The CFB season is really just starting to hit its stride, so let’s take a look at what happened last week, project some TaxAct Texas Bowl teams and look ahead to another tremendous weekend in CFB for week 12.

TaxAct Texas Bowl Team of the Week - Missouri - The Tigers got lambasted last year in Knoxville when the Tennessee Volunteers poured it on late in a 66-24 win. This year, though, was a different story. The Tigers, riding the wave of former DII transfer RB Cody Schrader trampled Tennessee 36-7, making a significant statement that the Tigers are a force in 2023. The Tigers have only lost to LSU by ten and to Georgia by nine last week. That’s it. So, they needed this one at home for a bit of revenge and a bit of redemption. A ten win season is certainly in range with games against Florida and Arkansas coming up.

TaxAct Texas Bowl Honorable mention Team of the Week - UCF - Gus Malzahn’s squad did not have a Big 12 win after grueling gut punch losses to Baylor, Oklahoma and West Virginia, in particular. But, in week ten, the Knights beat Cincinnati on the road. But, they still hadn’t beaten a legacy Big 12 team until Saturday. Not only did they beat a legacy team, they dismantled the HOT Oklahoma State Cowboys. Fresh off an upset over Oklahoma and five Big 12 wins in a row, Mike Gundy’s Cowboys got shellacked by Malzahn’s squad 45-3. That’s not a misprint. Oklahoma State was in some kind of driver’s seat after Kansas lost to Texas Tech, but the Cowboys couldn’t handle UCF at all. UCF RB R.J. Harvey looked more like Ollie Gordon than the real Ollie Gordon looked like Ollie Gordon. Harvey ran for 206 yards and three touchdowns in the win.

TaxAct Texas Bowl Player of the Week - LSU QB Jayden Daniels - I fell asleep well before the Florida-LSU game concluded, so I got on my phone first thing in the morning and I saw Daniels’ numbers. I got confused. I thought those have to be a misprint. Nope. Daniels did something that’s never been done in the history of college football. He’s the first QB to throw for 350+ yards and rush for 200+ yards. Check these #s out - 17 of 26 for 372 yards and three touchdowns through the air with 12 rushes for 234 yards and two touchdowns. 606 total yards, accounting for five touchdowns. He was the only player that could make Missouri RB Cody Schrader the honorable mention selection this week.

TaxAct Texas Bowl Honorable mention Player of the Week  - Missouri RB Cody Schrader - This was such a tough decision but when Daniels set records that no QB in FBS history had ever reached, Schrader moved down a notch from his high perch. But, that doesn't take away in the slightest from one of the greatest RB performances in SEC and Missouri history. He was the first player in SEC history to have 200 yards rushing (205) and 100 yards receiving (116) in the same game. There are only ten players that have done it in the history of college football. No player has generated as many all-purpose yards (321) in a game in FBS this season as Schrader.

National Team of the Week - Oregon State - The Beavers are one of the least talked about GREAT teams in the country. Stifling defense. Outstanding QB play. One of the nation’s best OL. The Beavers piled up 62 points on Stanford on Saturday, including 55 in the first three quarters. Circle the next two Saturdays - Oregon State gets Washington at home in Corvallis and then it’s Civil War time in Eugene against the Ducks. Those games will be AWESOME!

Honorable Mention National Team of the Week - UNLV - The Rebels finished 2022 with six losses in their last seven games. In 2021, they won just two games. In 2020, they lost all six games. After Friday night’s win over Wyoming in Vegas, the Rebels are now 8-2. That’s eight wins, one more than the Rebels had in the last three years COMBINED. Head coach Barry Odom’s squad jumped all over the Cowboys in the second half, shutting out the Cowboys and putting up 13 points over the last 30 minutes in a 34-14 win. 

National Player of the Week - Ohio State WR Marvin Harrison Jr. - Three touchdowns against Michigan State. Went over 1000 yards receiving for the second consecutive season. Heisman love. Seven catches for 149 yards, two TD. One carry for a nineteen yard touchdown. Yeah, he’s the absolute Truth.

Honorable mention National Player of the Week - Cal LB David Reese - You wouldn’t think that a defensive star emerged in a 42-39 game on the west coast, but Reese should get all kinds of honors for his performance. Three sacks. Six tackles. Two forced fumbles, one of which was returned for a 52 yard TD for the Golden Bears.


Quick Kudos

…to Sam Houston for its second win, and first ever against a CUSA as a FBS program, on the road at Louisiana Tech.

…to Georgia for a resounding win over a top ten team at home. TE Brock Bowers returned to the lineup and scored a TD in a 52-17 win over formerly #9 Ole Miss.

…to Washington for remaining undefeated in a hard fought win over Utah in Seattle 35-28

…to Oregon QB Bo Nix for throwing four TD passes against USC in a 36-27 win.

…to the Red Raiders of Texas Tech for wrecking Kansas’ magical season with a last second field goal in Lawrence, KS.

…to Jedd Fisch and the Arizona Wildcats for their seventh win of the season, this time over Colorado on the road in Boulder.

…to Iowa for a shutout over Rutgers.

…to James Madison for its tenth win in a row this season. All that stands between JMU and a perfect 12-0 season is a game with Appalachian State and a trip to Coastal Carolina.

 …to Hugh Freeze and Auburn for finding their offensive attack at the right time in the season. 48-10 over Arkansas in Fayetteville.


Week 12’s Big games

#2 (10-0) Georgia at #13 (7-3) Tennessee - the Volunteers are coming off of an embarrassing showing in Columbia, MO, so ruining the season of the #2 Bulldogs would be an amazing finish to the year.

 #5 (10-0) Washington at #12 (8-2) Oregon State - This is the BEST game of the weekend, in my estimation. Oregon State is actually a slight favorite at home, so it’s clear this could be Washington’s last biggest test.

 #24 (8-2) North Carolina at (6-4) Clemson - The Tigers are starting to play some good football finally, but facing, and shutting down, North Carolina QB Drake Maye might be a more difficult exercise on Saturday afternoon.


TaxAct Texas Bowl Potential teams

Big 12 candidates

(7-3) Oklahoma State - The Cowboys have overachieved a bit this year, but I didn’t expect them to get it handed to them this past weekend. Still in the Tax Act Texas Bowl hunt.

(7-3) Kansas - The Jayhawks lost to Texas Tech and have Kansas State this week…and potentially a banged up QB.

(5-5) Texas Tech - If the Red Raiders finish out the year with a win over UCF and an upset of Texas…I wouldn’t mind a HOT Tech team coming back to Houston.

SEC candidates

(7-3) LSU - If LSU finishes out with two more wins, the Tigers will get snapped up by a New Year’s Bowl

(6-4) Texas A&M - With the change at the head coaching position, A&M is an intriguing team to watch this offseason for many reasons.

(6-4) Auburn - The Tigers stayed hot with a MASSIVE blowout win on the road last weekend.


CFB Insider

The CFB season is really just starting to hit its stride, so let’s take a look at what happened last week, project some Tax Act Texas Bowl teams and look ahead to another tremendous weekend in CFB for

Tax Act Texas Bowl Team of the Week - Oklahoma State - Before the season started, I was convinced that this was the year, finally, that Oklahoma State was not going to be in this Big 12 race. But, head coach Mike Gundy has done a whale of a job keeping his Cowboys right in the mix. Oklahoma State knocked Oklahoma off its potential playoff perch with a scintillating 27-24 win in Stillwater…Bedlam will be decked in orange and black for the foreseeable future. RB Ollie Gordon II put on a show for the third straight week, rushing for 137 yards and two TD, while junior WR Rashod Owens took over the game with his receptions and runs after the catch. Oklahoma State moved to 7-2 on the season and 5-1 in the conference. What a win.

Tax Act Texas Bowl Honorable mention Team of the Week - Houston - QB Donovan Smith ran in a QB Draw on a two point conversion to beat Baylor in Waco 25-24 to move within two games of bowl eligibility. That would be a MAJOR feather in head coach Dana Holgorsen’s cap - first year in the Big 12 and the Cougars find a bowl?? Wow.

Tax Act Texas Bowl Player of the Week - Alabama QB Jalen Milroe - The Katy, TX product just kept scoring touchdowns against LSU. He threw for 219 yards, but he ran for 20 times for 155 yards and FOUR touchdowns in a come from behind win over rival LSU in Tuscaloosa

Tax Act Texas Bowl Honorable mention Player of the Week  - Oklahoma State RB Ollie Gordon II - as noted above, Gordon was instrumental in the 27-24 win over Oklahoma. He’s now run for 136, 168, 282, 271 and 138 in his last six games. In fact, he only ran the ball 19 times in his first three games for 109 yards.

National Team of the Week - Washington - Head coach Kalen DeBoer’s undefeated Huskies went to Los Angeles and dropped a 50-burger on the USC Trojans in a 52-42 win three weeks after beating Oregon in Seattle.

Honorable Mention National Team of the Week - Army - The Black Knights were decided underdogs heading to Denver to take on the undefeated Air Force Falcons. They left Denver with a win for the ages 23-3, knocking Air Force from its undefeated perch. With a win over Navy in the finale, Army will take home the Commander in Chief trophy after the massive upset in Air Force’s backyard. Congrats to Jeff Monken and his Army squad.

National Player of the Week - Washington RB Dillon Johnson - All the Greenville, MS native did was run for a career high 256 yards and four touchdowns in that 52-42 win over USC. He tacked on 11 more receiving yards for a total of 267 all-purpose yards and those four tuddies.

Honorable mention National Player of the Week - Penn State QB Drew Allar - 25-34 for 240 yards and FOUR touchdowns against Maryland in a 51-15 win.

Quick Kudos

…to Sam Houston for its first win as an FBS program - 24-21 win over Kennesaw State on a Colby Sessums game ending FG.

…to UCF for its first Big 12 win against Cincinnati 28-26

…to James Madison for continuing its dominant 9-0 run through CFB this year…even though James Madison can’t go to a bowl. It can STILL finish 12-0 with wins over UConn, Appalachian State and Coastal Carolina.

…to West Virginia for getting to bowl eligibility under head coach Neal Brown in a dominant 37-7 win over BYU.

…to Ole Miss for a hard fought win over Texas A&M in Oxford. Ole Miss hung on as Texas A&M kicker Randy Bond missed a game tying kick at the buzzer.

Week 11’s Big games

#3 (9-0) Michigan at #11(8-1) Penn State - Can Penn State finally win a BIG game against a top five team? Michigan is arguably the best team in the nation, so Penn State is in for a fight at home.

#18 (7-2) Utah at #5 (9-0) Washington - Utah can make a complete mess of the situation in the Pac-12 with an upset win in Seattle. Washington WR Rome Odunze is the absolute truth and Utah must stop him…and RB Dillon Johnson…and WR Ja’Lynn Polk…and QB Michael Penix Jr.

#17 (7-2) Tennessee at #12 (7-2) Missouri - The Tigers gave Georgia all it could handle in Athens, so returning home for Tennessee could make things tough on the Vols.

Tax Act Potential Bowl teams

Big 12 candidates

(6-3) Kansas State - the Wildcats have a great history with the bowl here in Houston

(6-3) West Virginia - without that late loss to Houston, Neal Brown’s Mountaineers would be 7-2

(4-5) Houston - the Cougars would be one heck of a story, but need two difficult wins to get to 6-6, at a minimum.

(5-4) BYU - The Cougars need a win to get to bowl eligibility, but if they do, they’ll bring fans in droves to H-Town.


SEC candidates

(6-3) LSU - If LSU finishes out with three wins, the Tigers will get snapped up by a New Year’s Bowl

(5-4) Texas A&M - the Aggies have had some gut punch losses this year, including last week’s 38-35 barnburner in Oxford.

(5-4) Auburn - In his first year at Auburn, Hugh Freeze has put Auburn in position to get into a bowl game, but must beat one of Arkansas, New Mexico State or Alabama to get to six wins.

CFB Insider

Rodeo Bowl Triumphs, Transfer Portal Turns

Crowned by Sports Illustrated as "unassailably the best bowl week diversion," the 2022 Rodeo Bowl presented by Kroger took home the esteemed "Best Event Award" at the Bowl Season Awards during the industry's annual conference.

As the Rodeo Bowl basks in its well-deserved accolade, the college football world gears up for the spring transfer portal, which brings with it the potential for significant changes in teams' dynamics.

The annual migration of college football players in search of new opportunities is in full swing, and the sport is bracing for the ripple effects these changes will have.

The spring transfer portal, which opened on April 15, provides 15 days for athletes to seek fresh horizons and for programs to reinforce their squads.

The portal has become a focal point of excitement this season, sending tremors through the college football world as star players embark on bold new journeys.

Among the early transfers, former Michigan Wolverines' starting quarterback Cade McNamara has bid farewell to Ann Arbor for a fresh start with the Iowa Hawkeyes. 

McNamara's move comes after a mixed-success season at Michigan, and the change of scenery could be the catalyst he needs to thrive truly.

In another attention-grabbing move, DJ Uiagalelei, once considered Trevor Lawrence's successor at Clemson, has opted to leave the renowned program for new opportunities at Oregon State.

The highly sought-after quarterback's decision holds the potential to disrupt the Pac-12 and establish the Beavers as a formidable presence on the national stage.

As the spring transfer portal spins, college football fans and analysts eagerly anticipate more announcements. With additional high-profile players expected to reveal their decisions in the coming days, the impact of this year's portal will undoubtedly reshape the sport's landscape and set the stage for an exciting and unpredictable 2023 season.

Here's a list of some players who have decided to enter the transfer portal and attend a new school this fall:

1. WR Jordan Hudson, TCU

2. CB Bobby Taylor, Texas A&M

3. DB Jahquez Robinson, Alabama

4. DT Tywone Malone, Ole Miss

5. TE Elijah Brown, Alabama

6. RB Sy'Veon Wilkerson, Jackson State

7. LB Brenden Grant, Florida State

8. CB Jalil Tucker, Oregon

9. WR Brenen Thompson, Texas

10. DB Jaden Davis, Oklahoma


CFB Insider

2023 Unleashed: College Football's Spring Blitz

As college football enthusiasts eagerly await the return of their favorite pastime, they can finally celebrate the start of spring practice, signaling the countdown to much-anticipated spring games. 

These annual showdowns provide a sneak peek into the 2023 season, unveiling the potential and promise of new and returning players. 

Missouri was the first from the Power Five to hit the gridiron when they took the field on March 18. 

Spectators were treated to an early look at the Tigers' restructured roster and a preview of the team's prospects for the upcoming season. 

The remaining Power Five teams are slated to follow suit throughout April, presenting their lineups and providing fans with an exhilarating preview of the forthcoming season.

BYU and four other Big 12 programs began preparations for the 2023 season last week, while the remaining nine schools commenced spring practices this week. 

These games present an opportunity for athletes to showcase their abilities and contend for starting positions. 

Concurrently, the coaching staff can assess their rosters and make critical determinations before the 2023 season.

As spring games transpire nationwide, fans can stay engaged by tuning in to various available television and streaming options. 

So don't miss out on the action - check out the times below to see when the SEC and Big 12 kick off their spring games and the corresponding viewing times!

Big 12

Baylor Saturday, April 22 12 p.m. ESPN+
Iowa State Saturday, April 22 11 a.m. --
Kansas Friday, April 7 7 p.m. --
Kansas State Saturday, April 15 -- --
Oklahoma Saturday, April 22 2:30 p.m. ESPN+
Oklahoma State None -- --
TCU Saturday, April 15 -- --
Texas Saturday, April 22 1 p.m. --
Texas Tech Saturday, April 22 12 p.m. ESPN+
West Virgina Saturday, April 22 12 p.m. ESPN+



Alabama Saturday, April 22 2 p.m. SEC Network+
Arkansas Saturday, April 15 12 p.m. SEC Network+
Auburn Saturday, April 8 1 p.m. SEC Network+
Florida Thursday, April 13 6:30 p.m. SEC Network+
Georgia Saturday, April 15 3 p.m. ESPN2
Kentucky  None -- --
LSU Saturday, April 15 1 p.m. SEC Network+
Mississippi Saturday, April 15 2 p.m. SEC Network+
Mississippi State Saturday, April 15 12 p.m. SEC Network+
Missouri Saturday, March 18 11 a.m. SEC Network+
South Carolina Saturday, April 15 7 p.m. SEC Network+
Tennesse Saturday, April 15 2:30 p.m. SEC Network+
Texas A&M Saturday, April 15 4 p.m. SEC Network+
Vanderbilt Saturday, April 8 6 p.m. SEC Network+


CFB Insider

New Year, New Players, New Possibilities

As spring practice draws near, the stage is set for the best incoming prospects to showcase their skills and stand out from the crowd.


So, it's no surprise that college football has adopted the "what have you done for me lately" mentality in 2023, reflecting the impressive impact of highly skilled transfers and first-year players in the 2022 season.


The transfer portal has become a goldmine for college football programs, providing an influx of talented and experienced players that can help coaches revamp their rosters. 


One position, the quarterback, has seen a major shakeup as many new signal-callers have found their way to different programs. As a result, the college football landscape is transforming as coaches aim to put their teams in the best position to succeed.


As fans eagerly await the start of the upcoming season, here are some of the standout newcomers to keep an eye on:


Alabama Crimson Tide


As Alabama football sets its sights on the 2023 season, fans of the Roll Tide can look forward to a new era of dominant offense. Coach Saban and his team have added three explosive weapons to their arsenal in the form of the top two running backs of the 2023 class, Richard Young and Justice Haynes. The Tide have also added five-star offensive lineman Kadyn Proctor and a new quarterback. With a potential emphasis on the running game, Young and Haynes could shine and be formidable forces on the field.


TCU Horned Frogs


The TCU Horned Frogs faced some significant losses this off-season, with key players such as QB Max Duggan, WR Quentin Johnston, and CB Tre'vius Hodges-Tomlinson departing the team. However, TCU is determined to build on the momentum from its successful 2022 season and has set its sights on acquiring top talent. The Horned Frogs have made a strong statement by landing six transfers from the SEC, including three from powerhouse program Alabama. This impressive haul consists of the highly touted JoJo Earle, a 5-9 wideout and kick returner rated No. 73 in the 2021 ESPN 300. With this talented addition, TCU aims to sign its highest-rated recruiting class in recent history, solidifying its position as a dominant force in the Big 12.


Texas Longhorns


Longhorn Nation is in high spirits after securing a commitment from one of the nation'snation's premier quarterbacks, Arch Manning, in July. Despite the transfer portal leading to talent departures from other programs, Manning's arrival has energized fans and heightened anticipation for the talented prospects joining the squad in the upcoming season. One such prospect is the 2023 class's top-rated linebacker, Anthony Hill, who sits at No. 16 in the ESPN 300 rankings. The combination of Hill's skills and Manning's talent has Longhorn fans eagerly awaiting the start of the new season.


LSU Tigers


As the LSU Tigers look to bounce back from a heartbreaking loss in the SEC championship game, they have moved to address a key weakness on their roster. The transfer portal has proven to be a valuable resource for college football programs, and LSU has taken advantage of it by adding two talented cornerbacks to the roster. Denver Harris, ranked No. 5 in the 2022 class, brings a wealth of experience to the secondary, having made an impact as a true freshman at Texas A&M. And Chestnut, a former Freshman All-American at Syracuse, has proven himself over two seasons with 83 tackles, four interceptions, and nine passes defended in 24 games. These two transfers could play a significant role in helping the Tigers reach their goals for the 2023 season.