The Sports Section

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NCAA Football

On Tuesday night the College Football Playoff selection committee released their rankings, and things at the top stayed the same. (1) Clemson, (2) Alabama, (3) Ohio State and (4) Notre Dame would play if the season ended today; But it didn’t. Two undefeated teams (5) Iowa and (6) Oklahoma State could still easily make the move to the top. Notre Dame seems to be the only team that doesn’t control their own destiny out of the top 4. They may need a little help to remain where they are. The Gators still have a good shot at sneaking into the Championship game as they are now at #8 in the rankings. A few upsets in the next couple of weeks and Florida could find themselves in the playoff. Of course, in the final weekend of the season they would have to get by their in-state rivals, the (14) Florida State Seminoles, who also went up in the rankings. Even if the Noles were to defeat the Gators in that game, there isn’t much of a chance for them to make the playoffs….maybe a better bowl game though.

Chattanooga @ (14) Florida St.-Sat. at 3pm

Florida Atlantic @ (8)Florida-Sat. at noon

 

NFL: And Then There Were Two

It wasn’t too long ago when there were a handful of undefeated teams in the NFL. On Sunday the Houston Texans upset the Cincinnati Bengals and handed them their first loss of the season, leaving only the Carolina Panthers and the New England Patriots as the only two teams without a loss. Both teams are led by MVP candidates at quarterback. Youngster Cam Newton has been impressive with both his arm and his scrambling abilities, and future first-ballot Hall-of-Famer, Tom Brady is doing what he does year after year: Winning. Looking at the schedules of these two teams, I would have to say the Panthers have a better chance of going to the playoffs undefeated.

College Hoops

It may be that part of the NCAA basketball season before the conference games start and teams play those teams most of us have never heard of, but wow! On Tuesday last year’s marquee teams matched up and the results were fun to watch and some of the “big boys” already have a mark in the loss column. #2 Kentucky looked impressive against #5 Duke and handed the Blue Devils an early season loss. In the other big matchup, #13 Michigan St. overcame an eleven-point deficit with 9 minutes to go to upset #4 Kansas. Another top ten team, #9 Wichita St, was also upset by Tulsa.

MLB Awards

Joe Maddon of the Chicago Cubs and Jeff Banister of the Texas Rangers were awarded Manager of the Year honors on Tuesday. It was Maddon’s third MOY award and Banister’s first, as both managers led their teams to impressive playoff runs. Maddon was the seventh manager to win the award three times and also seventh to earn it in both leagues. Bannister was the fifth to win the award in his first year as a major league manager.

The Chicago Cubs were also recognized in the Rookie of the Year category. Kris Bryant was a unanimous pick as the NL Rookie of the year. In the AL, Carlos Correa of the Houston Astros won the award in a close vote by the writers.

Finally, legends Willie Mays and the late Yogi Berra will be among 17 people who will be recognized by the President with the Medal of Freedom at a November 24th ceremony.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship

It was just a few short weeks ago that Joey Logano looked to be a no-brainer to make the “final four” of the Sprint Cup Chase to the Championship after sweeping the second round of the chase. However, after Sunday’s rain delayed (almost 7 hours) and shortened (93 laps early) Quicken Loans Race for Heroes at Phoenix International Raceway, Logano and three others were denied a chance to race their way into the big finale.

 Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the race on Sunday as the weather forced NASCAR to end what should have been a great race to the final lap of the elimination round. Junior was eliminated from the Chase in the second round, so the win didn’t affect who was going to the Championship. Earnhardt passed last year’s Champion, Kevin Harvick, on a routine pit stop. However, Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. will join Jeff Gordon as the final four drivers racing to be this year’s Champion. Kurt Busch had to win the race to advance, but he joins Logano and his teammate, Brad Keselowski, along with Carl Edwards as the last drivers to be eliminated. After Kyle Busch’s incredible comeback from injury this season, he is my pick to win it all this year, although it seems that Harvick is the favorite to take it all again. This Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway is at 3:15pm.

 Mike Yost

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  3. 88 Snake (1285) 13-7
  4. Justin’s Team (1235) 13-7
  5. Ted’s Team (1294) 10-10
  6. I Love Big Sacks (1156) 10-10
  7. Cubbie Bares (1186) 8-12
  8. Wyzard of Whoopass (1162) 7-13
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  10. Winston’s Witch (1120) 7-13