College Football Hype Through Week Seven

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College Football Hype Through Week Seven

Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Rowdy Baribeau, Writer

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It’s halfway through the 2018 college football season. There have been unexpected blow-outs, nail biters and upsets, and some sleeper teams have become instant contenders.

We have also had many disappointing starts, like the Arkansas Razorbacks. The Razorbacks lost two of their first three games, two of which they were favored in. Since their week one win against Eastern Illinois, the Hogs have lost every game. The horrific start is certainly not what Hog fans had envisioned with new head coach Chad Morris. Senior Chandler White has been to every Arkansas home game this season and has watched every loss.

“It’s a rough start,” White said. “Anything like that is going to happen with a first-year head coach.”

However, White sees some positives to Arkansas’ rough start.

“The defense has improved a lot,” White said. “[Morris] has been able to recruit some of the best players in the country. Our recruiting rank is very high.”

Photo | Sophia Ocampo

Despite the losses, White believes the team continues to improve on both offense and defense.

“It’s on both sides of the ball,” White said. “I’ve been really impressed.”

One of the interesting stories about the Razorbacks this year is that they feature a well-known running back, Rakeem Boyd. Boyd starred in the award-winning Netflix sports documentary “Last Chance U.” Boyd is one of White’s favorite players for the Hogs this year.

“I remember watching him on ‘Last Chance U,’” White said. “I was pulling for him all season. It was cool when I found out he was committed to Arkansas. He’s probably our best running back on the team this year.”

While the Razorbacks may have had their struggles, their rival down south has had a great start to the season. The LSU Tigers started off with a blow out win against the 8th-ranked Miami Hurricanes. Two weeks later, the Tigers pulled off another spectacular win against the 7th-ranked Auburn Tigers. Many college football experts and fans did not expect LSU to have such a great start to the season. Their success even surprised senior Drew Duck, who is an LSU fanatic.

“The rushing attack was more effective than I expected it to be,“ Duck said. “The defense and the rushing attack has been great, but our new quarterback, Joe Burrow, has really impressed me this year.

Photo | Sophia Ocampo

Duck believes that LSU safety Grant Delpit is the most exciting player on his Tigers’ defense.

“He’s the best player on the defense,” Duck said. “And that defense has a lot of good players on it. He doesn’t get a lot of looks; he’s underrated.”

While LSU has had a great start to the season, they recently came off with a loss to the 22nd-ranked Florida Gators. The LSU offense sputtered and had three turnovers on offense, which led to a 19 to 27 loss.

“We couldn’t establish a run game,” Duck said. “Their defensive backs played really good and their middle linebacker was just all over the field.”

LSU is not the only team surprising the college football world. The Oregon Ducks have been off to a hot start with four wins and one loss against the talented Stanford Cardinal. Sophomore Raekwan Reades has enjoyed seeing his Ducks do well to start this season.

“It’s been good,” Reades said. “We have exceeded our expectations.”

Photo | Sophia Ocampo

Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert was a Heisman candidate entering the season and has played well, throwing 15 touchdowns to five interceptions and completing 65 percent of his passes. Reades believes the Ducks’ QB has improved a lot since last year.

“He missed a lot of throws last year,” Reades said. “Over the offseason, he got better. He’s hitting all of his targets and stepping up when we need him.”

While Oregon may have lost against Stanford earlier in the year, Reades believes that was the best game so far this season.

“The offense and defense were dominating in the first half,” Reades said. “The rest of the game didn’t go our way after the first [half], but it was fun to watch.”

The college football atmosphere is one to marvel at. Chandler White believes that the war chants, music, crowd noise and traditions are what make college football great.

“You can feel the energy of not just the people in the stadium, but all of the fans everywhere, ” White said. “I’ve been to a lot of sports events, but nothing matches the atmosphere of a college football game.”

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