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NCAA Football 14 Simulation: Contenders emerge while pretenders fall and Johnny Football is out for the year

We are simulating the entire 2013 season using NCAA Football 14 from EA Sports. While we may bicker about the role computers play in determining a college football champion, we could not resist using this year's version of the game to see how the season might play out. Using an updated community roster from Operation Sports, we will simulate each game of the season using a PlayStation 3 copy of the game all week long. Now we move on to weeks five through eight? Are you ready? Here we go!

If you still need to get caught up on our simulation, check out Weeks 1-4 and Weeks 5-8

And now we continue on with week nine in the schedule…

WEEK 9

Oregon State 37, Stanford 16: It's an upset-filled Saturday in week nine and it all begins with second-ranked Stanford taking a hit on the road in division play. Oregon State forces Stanford to turn the football over four times and racks up 492 yards of offense against the Cardinal. The loss sends Stanford spiraling down the rankings after a number of close calls to this point in the season.

Illinois 20, Michigan State 13: The Michigan State Spartans had been making a push for a shot at a BCS championship shot, but a loss at Illinois brings the Spartans crashing back to reality. Illinois jumps out to a 13-0 in the first quarter and holds off the Spartans in the second half for the upset.

Virginia 24, Georgia Tech 21: Just when we started picking up on Georgia Tech's undefeated season in progress, the Yellow Jackets end up getting stung at Virginia. Virginia shuts out Georgia Tech in the second half and scores the game winning field goal with 11 seconds to play for the upset. Virginia is now 6-2 (3-1) while Georgia Tech falls to 7-1 (5-1).

Texas A&M 52, Vanderbilt 3: Johnny Manziel throws three touchdown passes in the first quarter and runs for another in the second quarter as the Aggies rout Vanderbilt to improve to 7-1 (4-1). Texas A&M all of a sudden is in the thick of the BCS title hunt with the lone loss coming against Alabama. Aggies move to second in the BCS standings.

Other notable scores

Alabama 27, Tennessee 21: While the week is full of upsets, we nearly get one in Tuscaloosa

Kansas 31, Baylor 24: Are the Jayhawks for real? With a win against Baylor Kansas has moved to 7-0 and cracks the top ten of the rankings.

South Carolina 24, Missouri 13: South Carolina is also in the BCS hunt following a win at Missouri. Gamecocks now 7-1 (5-1) with only a loss to Florida.

Oklahoma State 38, Iowa State 10: The Cowboys move up to 13th in the polls and are now 5-2 (3-1).

Northwestern 27, Iowa 7: The Hawkeyes go to 0-4 in Big Ten play while Northwestern remains in the Legends Division hunt at 7-1 (3-1).

Nebraska 44, Minnesota 10: Huskers rout their way to 6-1 record.

Boise State 38, BYU 6: Our BCS-buster favorite right now is a familiar one. Broncos improve to 7-1 overall.

 


WEEK 10

Kansas 38, Texas 27: Kansas continues this dream season by improving to 8-0 with a victory over Texas. The Jayhawks are fueled to a victory by a 17-point third quarter. This time Kansas does it mostly with defense by forcing five Longhorn turnovers in Austin. Kansas moves up to third in the rankings and all of a sudden is starting to be taken seriously, but can they keep this going and prove to be a threat to a team like Alabama or Texas A&M?

Georgia 38, Florida 21: Georgia has been having a very disappointing season in our simulation but they come out on a mission against Florida. Georgia takes the lead in to halftime thanks to a  late touchdown run by Gurley and puts the game away in the fourth quarter by outscoring the Gators 14-0.

South Carolina 27, Mississippi State 24 (OT): South Carolina gets a real challenge from a surging Mississippi State team, but prevails in overtime. The win comes at a great time as Florida loses earlier in the day to Georgia, giving the Gamecocks the driver's seat in the SEC East down the stretch. South Carolina also stays high in the BCS rankings as well.

Texas A&M 56, UTEP 14: This was another Heisman stat game for Manziel. Just 140 passing yards but three touchdowns through the air and another on the ground in a blowout.

Other notable scores

Ohio State 43, Purdue 3: Buckeyes continue to roll as they improve to 8-1 overall and move in to the top five of the rankings.

Michigan 24, Michigan State 21: The Spartans lose their second straight and Michigan takes charge in the Legends Division.

Nebraska 35, Northwestern 10: In another key Legends Division, Nebraska buries Northwestern in Lincoln. It's now looking to be between Nebraska and Michigan in the Legends Division.

Boise State 31, Colorado State 7: Broncos remain the top BCS buster candidate, although Fresno State is in the mix as well. Broncos are in top ten though.

Florida State 38, Miami 35: Seminoles and Hurricanes play a back-and-forth game and Florida State comes out on top. Seminoles score ten points in the second half of the fourth quarter and hold on.


WEEK 11

Alabama 26, LSU 20 (OT): LSU gives Alabama the best battle the Tide have had all season, but as expected the Crimson Tide rise to the occasion. Down 10-3 at home at halftime, Alabama battles back with a pair of second half touchdown passes from AJ McCarron and a late field goal to force overtime, and McCarron takes care of business in overtime with one more touchdown pass for the victory after LSU does not score. The Tide turnover the football four times but the defense comes through when needed the most as Alabama remains on top of the rankings and moves to 9-0.

Oklahoma State 28, Kansas 24: The dream season of the Jayhawks comes to a halt with a close loss at Oklahoma State. Cowboys score a touchdown in the final two minutes of the game and Kansas is unable to put together a late touchdown drive. Kansas loses their first game of the season but remains in the top ten and in control of the Big 12 race.

Nebraska 24, Michigan 14: In a pivotal Big Ten Legends Division tilt, Nebraska leaves Ann arbor with a win and control of the Legends race. Nebraska piles up 493 yards of offense and holds Michigan to 297 yards and forces two turnovers.

Other notable scores

Texas A&M 23, Mississippi State 20: The Aggies avoid an upset bid by Mississippi State, holding off the Bulldogs in the fourth quarter. Manziel is injured early in the game, with a broken vertebrae that will keep him out for the remainder of the season. This forces the Aggies to go with Joeckel at QB with hopes of sustaining just enough to maintain their position in the BCS standings. The Aggies stay second in the rankings

Oklahoma 38, Baylor 21: While Kansas has been the story in the Big 12, Oklahoma is not ready to give up on a potential conference championship run. A win against Baylor keeps Oklahoma in contention.

Oregon 38, Stanford 17: This game does not carry nearly the importance we may have thought, but it remains a critical game in the Pac 12 North race. Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota goes off for five touchdown passes, 262 yards and 41 rushing yards.

Louisville 54, UConn 17: Let's not overlook Louisville. Though they had a setback earlier against Rutgers, the Cardinals are still making a BCS push. Teddy Bridgewater passes for 501 yards and four touchdowns, including a 74 yard touchdown pass to Copeland on the first play of the game.

Wisconsin 31, BYU 10: Badgers stay in Big Ten hunt while Cougars start to see postseason plans blowing up at 4-5.


WEEK 12

South Carolina 28, Florida 23: The game of the week does not disappoint. South Carolina and Florida square off for late control of the SEC East race, and the Gamecocks win a wild one in the fourth quarter. Gamecocks quarterback Connor Shaw comes through with two touchdown runs from seven yards out and then adds a third from just outside the goal line in the fourth quarter for what turns out to be the deciding score. the teams combine for 888 yards of offense as the Gators also stay in contention for a BCS Championship Game appearance. South Carolina is ranked third in the BCS standings behind Alabama and Texas A&M.

Georgia Tech 17, Clemson 7: Georgia Tech picks up a huge win in ACC play against the Clemson Tigers. With the win Georgia Tech improves to 9-1 and owns a 7-1 record in ACC play. The big play comes in the second quarter when Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd throws the first of two interceptions in the game and Georgia Tech returns it 20 yards for a touchdown to go up 14-0. Georgia Tech gets the win despite being held to 233 yards of offense. They'll take it.

Kansas 24, West Virginia (OT): Just when we think Kansas returns to reality, they manage to force overtime and then win it against West Virginia. The win sends the Jayhawks to 6-1 in Big 12 play to control the race and 9-1 overall to stay in the top ten.

Other notable scores

Rutgers 40, Cincinnati 34 (OT): Rutgers improves to 5-0 in American play with an overtime thriller at home.

Louisville 35, Houston 13: Louisville keeps pace in the American but is starting to run out of time to catch Rutgers, who handed them their only loss so far.

Ohio State 45, Illinois 10: Buckeyes maintain their fourth place standing in the BCS with another blowout victory. At 9-1, Ohio State is just about ready to clinch a spot in the Big Ten championship game.

Michigan 42, Northwestern 21:> The Wolverines double up the Wildcats, who are hitting a wall in the second half of the season.

Boise State 38, Wyoming 31: Broncos continue to play role of BCS Buster in the final year of the BCS. Win at home vs Wyoming shows some defensive flaws but Boise State remains holds the fifth best ranking in the BCS with two regular season games to play.

Alabama 48, Mississippi State 17: After a scare against LSU, Alabama is focused and locked in for a dominant victory at Mississippi State. Alabama stays on top of the SEC West and BCS standings with the win.

Kevin McGuire

About Kevin McGuire

Contributor to College Football Talk on NBCSports.com. Member of the FWAA and National Football Foundation. College Football Hall of Fame voter. Also managing Bloguin's NittanyLionsDen.com and Macho-Row.com.

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