Games to watch: Oregon looks for another marquee


Oklahoma @ Baylor – The Sooners travel to Waco, Texas to take on Robert Griffin III and the Baylor Bears’ high-flying offense.

Oklahoma is coming off a bye as they defeated Texas A&M in their last game two weeks ago. However, the win was overshadowed by the injury of all-time NCAA reception leader Ryan Broyles. Broyles tore his ACL in the win against the Aggies, ending his career sooner than he expected.

Kenny Stills, the Sooners’ second leading receiver, is also bothered by a hamstring problem, and his status for Saturday’s game is also in question.

This is going to put an emphasis on the Sooners’ running game, led by Roy Finch. He must be able to run the ball and limit the Baylor offense from being on the field.

Baylor, for three quarters, was getting absolutely dominated by the Kansas Jayhawks. Entering the fourth quarter, the Bears had only mustered three points in Lawrence.

Griffin and the offense exploded for 21 points and nearly 300 yards in the fourth quarter to rally back and send the game to overtime, where the Bears held the Jayhawks on a two point conversion to win the game 31-30.

Baylor went through a funk with a couple of terrible games on offense, but Griffin has gotten the offense going, completing 70 percent of his passes and seven touchdowns.

If Griffin is able to keep up his play, the Sooners may be ripe for the upset.

University of Southern California @ Oregon – Coming off of a dominating 53-30 victory over previously undefeated Stanford, the Ducks have jumped right back into the national title picture. With running back LaMichael James completely back from injury, the Ducks offense is as explosive as ever.

However, it was the performance of the Ducks’ defense against the Cardinal that showed that this team is capable of getting back to the championship.

The defense sacked Heisman candidate Andrew Luck three times and forced five total turnovers during the matchup. The defense will look to have this same type of performance as they take on another explosive offense.

Matt Barkley and the Trojan offense enters Eugene, Ore. looking to continue their offensive explosion. Barkley set a school record with six touchdown passes two weeks ago in a victory against the Colorado Buffaloes.

The Trojans defense is improving throughout the year, but they will need to take it to another level as they try and stop the Oregon offense.

USC has the offense that can score points and hang around against the Oregon Ducks. In the end, the Oregon offense led by Darren Thomas and James will score too many points for USC and will win a wild shootout.

Texas Tech @ Missouri — The Tigers are coming off of an upset victory at home against Texas last week. The Tigers defense was able to hold the Longhorns offense without scoring a touchdown in a win that could have saved their season.

If the Tigers would not have won the game, then they would have been in serious jeopardy of not making a bowl game.

While Missouri appeared to have saved their season, the Red Raiders are on the verge of a historic collapse.

Coming off an amazing upset over then ranked No. 3 Oklahoma, Texas Tech has not been able to build off of that victory.

The Red Raiders have gotten blown out in their last three games by a combined score of 159 to 33. The Red Raider offense has not been able to move the ball like they had earlier in the season, and the defense has not been able to stop anybody.

Both teams are 5-5 on the season, and one victory by each team will make them bowl eligible.

The Red Raiders have shown the past couple of weeks that they are not playing with the passion necessary to win games, while the Tigers have continued to fight throughout the year.

With that being said, look for the Missouri Tigers to get the job done at home and become bowl eligible.

Penn State @ Ohio State — After struggling to start the season, the Buckeyes had started to play some good football. Last Saturday, the Buckeyes went back to their early-season form as they lost in overtime to a mediocre Purdue team.

However, the offense has shown that they are starting to turn the corner. Freshman Braxton Miller has emerged as the go-to guy at the quarterback position and has given the offense a spark that it needed. He will look to continue his strong play against a stingy Penn State defense.

After an exhausting week ended with a crushing 17-14 loss to Nebraska, the Nittany Lions look to get back to just playing football.

Penn State is led by Silas Redd, a junior running back that has proven to be a workhorse.

The key to this game will be whether or not Miller can have a solid game against that Penn State defense. Look for Miller to make just enough plays for the Buckeyes and for Penn State to lose their second straight football game.

Nebraska @ Michigan — The two teams meet at The Big House with identical records of 8-2, 4-2.

The Wolverines may be without quarterback Denard Robinson, who sustained an injury in the game against Illinois. Quarterback Devin Gardner filled in nicely for Robinson as he hit Martavious Odoms for a fourth quarter touchdown to put the game out of reach for the Wolverines.

Nebraska is coming off of a 17-14 victory over Penn State during an emotional day last Saturday in Happy Valley.

The defense was able to hold the Nittany Lions as they tried to drive from a 17-0 deficit for the win in the game’s final minutes.

These two teams match up nicely, but with the game at home for Michigan, look for the Wolverines to escape with a close victory.