Ohio State Buckeyes

Down To Two

By: Kenneth Harrison

TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services

The first round of the College Football Playoff was played this past weekend. Let’s take a look and recap what happened.

No. 1 LSU and No. 4 Oklahoma played the first game, The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl in Atlanta, Ga.

The Tigers (14-0) demolished OU (12-2), 63 – 28. Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow was spectacular, passing for 493 yards and seven touchdowns. He also ran for a TD.

“We go into every game thinking nobody can stop us,” Burrow said.

LSU scored 49 points in the first half. Justin Jefferson scored all four of his touchdowns in the first half and finished with 14 catches for 227 yards.

Tight end Thaddeus Moss, son of Hall of Famer Randy Moss, had 99 receiving yards and a touchdown.

LSU offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger learned shortly before kickoff that his daughter-in-law, broadcaster Carley McCord, was among five people killed in a plane crash in Louisiana. The small plane went down shortly after takeoff for what was supposed to be a flight to Atlanta for the game.

Head coach Ed Orgeron delivered the news to Ensminger, who was seen with tears running down his cheeks but stuck to the task at hand.

“What a tremendous, tremendous LSU Tiger,” Orgeron said after the game. “He called a great game tonight.” Coach O gave him the game ball.

No. 2 Ohio State and No. 3 Clemson was a battle of two unbeaten teams. The Playstation Fiesta Bowl was played in Glendale, Arizona. Clemson won a close game, 29 – 23.

I’m not sure how the defending champion Tigers are being overlooked but they feel disrespected by it.

The Buckeyes (13-1) jumped out to a 16-0 lead in the first half. They responded to a Clemson rally to retake the lead 23-21 in the fourth quarter.

The Tigers (14-0) needed four plays and 1:18, with Lawrence completing all three of his passes and mixing in an 11-yard run. The sophomore quarterback, who has never lost a college start, passed for 259 yards and two scores. He also ran for a career-high 107 yards, including a 67-yard touchdown late in the first half.

OSU drove the ball to the Clemson 23-yard line, but Justin Fields was intercepted by Nolan Turner with 37 seconds left.

“Everybody kept saying we didn’t play nobody, that we blow out teams. Tonight showed what we can do,” Clemson receiver Tee Higgins said. “We showed everybody we got fight in us.”

The Buckeyes played well on offense. Fields threw for 320 yards, 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions. J.K. Dobbins ran for 174 yards and a touchdown.

“I told Ryan, that Ohio State team, what an unbelievable game, their quarterback, their back, those guys played their hearts out,” Swinney said. “But in the end, our guys showed what they’re made of. They’ve got the heart of a champion; they’ve got the eye of a tiger.”

The semifinals played out the way I expected. The best two teams won and they will play the national championship game in New Orleans January 13.

This is basically a home game for LSU but don’t count Clemson out.

Play It Off

By: Kenneth Harrison

TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services

We are in the sixth year of the College Football Playoff.

The top four teams have been picked and I think this is the first year where the committee had an easy decision selecting all of the teams. We are going to preview the playoff games.

Both games will be played December 28. No. 1 LSU (13–0) versus No 4. Oklahoma (12–1) in the Peach Bowl.

The Tigers return to Atlanta after trouncing No. 4 Georgia in the SEC Championship. LSU is led by the clear Heisman Trophy front-runner Joe Burrow.

Burrow is the best quarterback I’ve seen at LSU in the past 25 years. This program is notorious for having poor QB play, so they are really enjoying this because I do not think they will be in this position again anytime soon.

Burrow has thrown for over 4,700 yards, 48 touchdowns, 6 interceptions with a 93.7 QBR (2nd).

Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire has rushed for nearly 1,300 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also has 50 receptions for 400 yards so he makes plays all over the field.

Receivers Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase both have over 1,200 receiving yards with double digit TD’s.

The Tigers are ranked 32nd nationally in total defense.

This is Oklahoma’s third straight playoff appearance and they are looking for their first win.

Quarterback Jalen Hurts transferred from Alabama, so he’s played against LSU the last three seasons. He won’t be intimidated and their defense is not as good as they previously were.

Hurts is the epitome of a dual threat, passing for over 3,600 yards, 32 touchdowns, 7 picks and a QBR of 90.6 (4th). Hurts also ran for more than 1,200 yards, 18 TD’s and he averages 5.7 yards per carry.

CeeDee Lamb is his top target and big play threat. OU is 24th in total defense.

This game should be high scoring and both offenses should play well. Hurts has a bad habit of turning the ball over and I don’t see this game being any different. That will help LSU win by double digits.

No. 2 Ohio State (13–0) plays No. 3 Clemson (13–0) in the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Az.

Both teams are led by highly recruited quarterbacks from Georgia. They were also finalists in the 2017 Elite 11 with Justin Fields finishing first and Trevor Lawrence finishing second.

Fields has thrown for almost 3,000 yards, 40 TD’s, 1 interception and his QBR is 92.4 (3rd). I must admit I’ve been labeled an ‘OSU hater’ by a friend of mine because I give an honest opinion of Fields and last year Dwayne Haskins.

I watch the Buckeyes regularly and notice that quarterbacks typically throw short passes like slants, screens and crossing routes. The receivers get massive yards after catch, which makes the QB’s stats look good.

Running back J.K. Dobbins has rushed for over 1,800 yards, 20 TD’s and he averages 6.5 ypc. The defense ranks second in total D.

Clemson is the defending national champion and they have been disrespected all year. Lawrence played poorly for the first month of the season with several multiple interception games. He finished the year with 8 picks but he improved.

Receiver Tee Higgins and running back Travis Etienne are going to be first round picks in this year’s draft. The Tigers defense is the best in the nation in total defense.

This should be a close game but Clemson will win. The Tigers of LSU and Clemson will meet in the national championship.

Jason Bishop Show With Kipp Branch February 16

Jason Bishop Show With Kipp Branch February 16


College Football Playoff Predictions


By: Kipp Branch

TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services

It is time again for the college football playoff and this year’s games I think will be pretty good.

Let’s start with the teams. 

1. Alabama: The Crimson Tide are in my opinion are a professional team playing at the college level. I really think the Tide could give The Cleveland Browns all they could handle. Jalen Hurts is an amazing dual threat QB. I can’t believe it took Nick Saban most of fall camp to name him the starter for 2016. Saban is the best coach in football and Alabama is the favorite to win the playoff.

2. Ohio State: The Buckeyes led by Urban Meyer have been a dynasty for years now. They won a classic against Michigan to get into the playoff. The loss to Penn State cost Ohio State a shot at the Big 10 Championship, but the committee put them in despite that. It is all about money folks. OSU produces mega bucks and TV Ratings.

3. Clemson:  The Tigers are back for the second year in a row with a QB that should have won the Heisman. This offense can put up yards and points like a pinball machine. Can Clemson muster up enough defense to win it all this year?

4. Washington: The Huskies lead by QB Jake Browning have been very impressive this year. I like this team and think they deserve to be here. We on the east coast will be shocked when we see how good these Huskies are. 


Alabama vs Washington in The Peach Bowl in Atlanta. 

Washington will fly across country to meet the Tide in Atlanta; a place Alabama has spent a lot of time in over the past decade. Alabama has a monster defense with first round picks everywhere, and Washington has a really good offense that can put up points. The difference in this game will be Jalen Hurts and the Tide offense. The Huskies will test Alabama but in the end Alabama rolls 35-24. Bama has too many weapons.

Ohio State vs Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl in Tempe, Arizona. Both fan bases have travel a good distance to get here. I am actually looking forward to watching this game. 

Ohio State averages 480 yards (21st-best in FBS) and 42.7 points (ninth-best in FBS) per game. Clemson averages 506 yards (13th-best in FBS) and 40.2 points (15th-best in FBS) per game. The Tigers’ specialty is the passing game (332.6 yards per game) while the Buckeyes are better at running the ball (258.3 yards per game).

On defense, Ohio State is fifth in the country, allowing opponents just 282 yards per game to go with just 14.2 points per game (third in FBS). Clemson finished ninth in the FBS in yards allowed (314 per game) and 12th in points allowed per game (18.4)

When it is all said and done I would take Deshaun Watson over any player in the country and think Clemson is a team of destiny. I did pick this team to win it all in the preseason and I think the Tigers get past Ohio State 38-28.

This will set up a huge rematch with Alabama. 

I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas.