football Edit

Fact or Faction: Michigan turned a corner with win over ND

National recruiting director Mike Farrell and national recruiting analyst Adam Gorney tackle three topics daily and determine whether they believe the statements or not.

TAKE TWO: Is Penn State team to beat for TE Theo Johnson?

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1. Oklahoma has no chance at the playoff now.

Jalen Hurts
Jalen Hurts (AP Images)

Farrell’s take: FICTION. While it’s going to be hard for the Sooners to make the playoff now, they are not done. If the Sooners run the table and a few things happen they can still get in. Ohio State plays Penn State, so Oklahoma has to hope one of them loses another game along the way to eliminate the chances of the Big Ten sending two teams, but more importantly, the Sooners need Alabama or LSU to drop one aside from their head-to-head matchup. And they can always hope Clemson loses one as well. It hurts that Texas looks so bad. There’s still a chance for OU to make it in, but it’s not a great chance.

Gorney’s take: FICTION. No chance is a little harsh but a very, very slight chance is much more realistic. The problem here is that the SEC and Big Ten are so strong that even if Penn State loses a nail-biter at Ohio State or LSU looks great against Alabama but loses by a small margin, those teams would be favored Oklahoma, which gave up 48 in a loss at average Kansas State. There needs to be significant upheaval in the coming weeks for Oklahoma to have a chance at the playoff and I just don’t see it. No chance? I’m not there, but I’d be stunned if it happened.

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2. Michigan has turned a corner.

Jim Harbaugh
Jim Harbaugh (AP Images)

Farrell’s take: FICTION. While I’m impressed with the big win over Notre Dame, a corner will only be turned if the Wolverines beat Ohio State and that still doesn’t look likely. This was a big win for Jim Harbaugh with all the criticism surrounding him and his record against top-10 teams, but Michigan still has two losses and needs a huge win against a dominant Ohio State team to prove to me they are taking the next step.

Gorney’s take: FACT. Other than the first quarter-and-a-half against Penn State which gave the Nittany Lions an early 21-0 lead, I thought Michigan outplayed Penn State and had chances to win that game in the latter stages. That was impressive. And the way they completely dominated Notre Dame in every way on Saturday night was really something to see even if the Irish were vastly overrated.

So in two weeks, Michigan almost came back to shock Penn State and pounded Notre Dame - not too shabby. If the only expectation for Michigan turning a corner is beating Ohio State then that’s a pretty high bar since Ohio State is the most talented team in the country.

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3. Zachary Evans will end up at LSU.

Zachary Evans
Zachary Evans (Sam Spiegelman)

Farrell’s take: FACT. It’s hard to say anything factual about the talented running back, but his visit to LSU this past weekend could end up sealing the deal. Zachary Evans has been all over the map when it comes to his interest in teams but LSU could be the fit for him and word is the visit went very well. And who wouldn’t want to play in that LSU offense? LSU recruiting is on fire.

Gorney’s take: FICTION. I’m going to take the field here because anything with Evans is a complete guessing game. Even if he commits to LSU at some point, I could definitely envision a Signing Day flip if another school intrigues him more. I would say right now I still feel like staying at home and playing for Jimbo Fisher will be pretty intriguing so Texas A&M is definitely in the thick of this along with LSU, Alabama and maybe others. This is probably going to be a drama-filled recruitment until the end, so I’m going to pick all the other schools to be safe.

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