#1 e and a loss could make it very difficult for Georgia Tech to get bowl el von anda0012 29.06.2019 15:04

Sir Ian Botham has backed England to rise to top spot in the Test rankings after their emphatic innings victory over Sri Lanka. England beat the tourists by an innings and 88 runs inside three days at Headingley with centurion Jonny Bairstow edging James Anderson, who recorded match figures of 10-45, to the man of the match award.However, while totals of 91 and 119 are likely to see the Sri Lankan batsmen come in for criticism, Botham believes their inexperience and Englands quality must be taken into account. A lot of these guys wont have seen anything quite like this, said the former England all-rounder.Theyve got a couple of experienced players and the openers have played about 20 games I think, but after that they really are novices, particularly in English conditions, so you have to give them a bit of leeway. James Anderson ended with match figures of 10-45 as England crushed Sri Lanka by an innings and 88 runs Hopefully theyll learn quickly from their own point of view but its very easy for us to forget that England are a very good Test team. Theyre a team that I think will go to No 1 in the world in the next year or so, as soon as they can.Theyll be right back up there very shortly and thats what these teams do. England have got an exceptionally good bowling attack - and they were a bowler down dont forget. The bowler in question was Ben Stokes, who was forced to sit out the majority of the third day with an injury sustained on Friday.Should the 24-year-old all-rounder fail to recover in time for the second Investec Test at Chester-le-Street, Botham can see England opting for an extra seamer rather than a batsman to replace him.First and foremost, Id be very surprised if Ben Stokes doesnt play at Durham. Its a home game for him and hell be desperate to do well, said the Sky Sports pundit. Stokes concern England have fitness worry over Ben Stokes ahead of second Test If the injury cant be repaired in time or he isnt match fit then I wouldnt be surprised to see England go with one of the young bowlers theyve got lined up.I think theyre possibly thinking of bringing in a bowler because if youve got three seamers who are going well - Anderson, Broad and Finn - it gives you the opportunity to look at another seamer in that environment.Jake Ball is probably the next cab on the rank and fine, play him. It gives you an opportunity in the actual arena, because the team is playing so well, its much easier to test players and give them an outing than when youre struggling. Itd be a perfect opportunity if thats what they want to do. Also See: Jimmy takes 10 in innings win Scorecard WATCH: Story of day three England v Sri Lanka on Sky Sports Jermaine Grace Jersey . 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While hell be dialed in to that tournament on a course he loves, you can forgive him if his eyes glance down the calendar just a bit, towards April. The last weekend before College Football Playoff selection committee starts releasing its rankings has potential for a serious shake-up in the postseason race.All seven of the nine remaining undefeated teams in FBS that are playing Saturday are on the road, including No. 3 Clemson at No. 12 Florida State and No. 7 Nebraska at No. 11 Wisconsin.The rankings that come out Tuesday night will be the first of six, and as always it is important to remember not to read too much into them. They could provide a few hints as to the way this plays out in the long run, but ultimately the ones that come out on Dec. 4 are the only ones that really matter.Week nine of the college football season will set the stage for the committee and here are some things you need know about it.BEST GAMENo. 3 Clemson at No. 12 Florida State.It has become one of the most significant rivalries in the nation. The winner of this game has won the last five Atlantic Coast Conference championships and reached the postseason with a chance to win the national championship each of the last three seasons.The Seminoles (5-2, 2-2) need a lot of help to win the ACC this season, but beating the Tigers is a big step toward possibly landing in a major bowl game. Clemson can probably afford one slip along the way and still make the College Football Playoff, but this is their biggest remaining hurdle before a potential ACC championship game.HEISMAN WATCHFlorida State running back Dalvin Cook and Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson have the potential to make a move in a nationally televised night game, but the pressure is really on Washington quarterback Jake Browning.The sophomore entered the Heisman conversation a few weeks ago after the Huskies had back-to-back blowouts of Stanford and Oregon. That competition doesnt look quite as daunting in retrospect.Browning and Washington get a serious test Saturday at No. 17 Utah. The Utes lead the nation in takeaways, are tied for first in interceptions and they have one of the better pass rushes in the Pac-122.dddddddddddd If Browning falters, expect a lot of the Heisman buzz to dissipate.NUMBERS TO KNOW1971 -- The year of the last victory by Northwestern at Ohio State. The Wildcats bring a three-game winning streak into Columbus to face the sixth-ranked Buckeyes on Saturday. Ohio State is 29-1 against Northwestern since 1971.5-23 -- Nebraskas record against ranked opponents on the road since 1998, as reported this week by the Omaha World-Herald. The seventh-ranked Cornhuskers will be looking for their second road victory against a ranked team since joining the Big Ten in 2011 when they face No. 11 Wisconsin.6-1 -- Michigan States record against Michigan in the last seven meetings, the best stretch in the rivalry for the Spartans since the 1950-69, when Michigan State went 14-4-2. The second-ranked Wolverines are 24+-point favorites against the Spartans, who have lost five straight games.OFF THE RADAREastern Michigan has been one of the least successful football programs in FBS for decades. The Eagles have one bowl appearance in their history and since that 1987 victory against San Jose State in the California Bowl, EMU has never won more than six games in a season. And it reached that number only twice.The Eagles (5-3) and third-year coach Chris Creighton can become bowl eligible with a victory against Miami, Ohio, at home on Saturday. The RedHawks are 2-6.COACH IN NEED OF A WINGeorgia Tech coach Paul Johnson has never been shy about complaining about expectations at the school not quite matching the commitment . He has had a lot of success with the Yellow Jackets, but they went 3-9 last season and there is a new athletic director at Georgia Tech.Johnson and the Jackets (4-3) host Duke and a loss could make it very difficult for Georgia Tech to get bowl eligible.---AP College Football website: www.collegefootball.ap.org---Follow Ralph D. Russo at www.Twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP

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