Saturday, September 19, 2009

This Weekend in College Football: Week 3

As usual, all times Eastern and all predictions wrong.

  • California @ Minnesota (ESPN): In Cal's last early kickoff adventure, they lost to a mediocre/bad Maryland team. This game kicks off at 10 AM Pacific, though, so maybe the extra hour will benefits them? They should win anyway.
  • East Carolina @ North Carolina (ESPN2): If UNC's offense fails to show again, this will be a long day for the Tarheels. ECU is generally considered decent, but I'm not seeing it (beat App. State by 5, lost to a rebuilding WVU by 15), so I have to take UNC here.
  • Duke @ Kansas (Versus): Let's see, Duke has lost to Richmond and should've lost to Army (don't let the score fool you). Kansas, meanwhile, has outscored their equally bad opponents so far 83-10. I think the Duke basketball team might stand a better chance here.
  • Louisville @ Kentucky (ESPNU): Both of these teams had early bye weeks (the season started "late" this year, so teams only have 1 bye week) and are coming off blowouts of their respective opening day patsies. While L'ville probably won't lose 27-2 this time around, I still like UK to win.
  • Ball State @ Army (CBSCS): Army isn't exactly good or anything, but Ball State is super bad. I think the Knights of the Hudson once again, though hopefully that doesn't doom them again this week.
  • Eastern Michigan @ Michigan (BTN): Your guide to directional Michigans: Western: bad, Central: good, Eastern: super bad. Michigan rolls.
  • North Texas @ Alabama (SEC): SEC TV just seems sad if it's relegated to games like this. See, when it was the "JP Sports SEC 'Game of the Week' brought to you by Golden Flake and Yella Wood" no one cared, but when you have your own network it just seems, I dunno, wrong? Anyway...
  • Boston College @ Clemson (Raycom): This is BC's first real test, and considering how terrible I think everyone expected them to be this year (myself included) they may make it close, but Clemson should ultimately prevail.
  • Tennessee @ Florida (CBS): I think the only good thing I got out of Thursday's game was one of the commentators joking that Florida may be, perhaps, "building a woodshed" up in Gainesville. You know, to take Tennessee behind. What's the line on this, like 28 or something absurd like that? Is that the worst line in SEC history not involving teams named Vanderbilt, Kentucky, or Mississippi State? I can't speak for most folks, but I'm tuning into this one out of a sort of morbid curiosity to see if Florida can cover.
  • Michigan State @ Notre Dame (NBC): Notre Dame isn't as good as everyone thought (duh) but they're not the kind of outfit that would lose to Central Michigan at home, either. Not that the transitive property applies to college football, but seriously ND should prevail.
  • Southern California @ Washington (ABC/Gameplan): U-Dub definitely gave LSU the what-for two weeks ago, but I think I could start for USC and still beat them, especially if all I had to do was hand it to Joe McKnight and Stafon Johnson 40 times. Heck, I bet even Mitch Mustain could handle that! Anyway....
  • Nebraska @ Virginia Tech (Gameplan/ESPN2/ABC): This is the kind of game that makes predicting the early season so tough. Well, okay, that's most games, but still. What we know about VPI: they lost kind of badly to Alabama. What we know about Nebraska: they've blown out a couple of bad teams. What we know from last year: VPI won pretty convincingly in Omaha. Automatic conclusion: since the game is in Blacksburg, VPI should win convincingly. And honestly, I can't think of anything to trump this conclusion.
  • Arizona @ Iowa (ESPN2/ABC): I don't care about this game and I can't think of anything to say. Iowa, I guess? I dunno.
  • Utah @ Oregon (ESPN): Now this game is hells of intriguing, except for the fact Oregon has pretty much decided they no longer want to be discussion for who the second best team in the Pac-10 is. They lost to Boise - no shame in that. But nearly losing to a very not good Purdue team at home? That raises some eyebrows. Eyebrows that say they're probably not going to beat Utah.
  • Tulsa @ Oklahoma (FSN): I really want Tulsa to make this interesting. You know, toss it around, go crazy with 5 WR sets and try to put up a bunch of points. Oh, wait, they already do those things? Hrm. Well, OU should win, but I like Tulsa to keep up the pressure, at least.
  • Indiana @ Akron (ESPNU): Indiana spices things up by playing a school that doesn't have a cardinal direction in its name. Worryingly for IU, though, they've won those two games by a grand total of 11 points. I mean, they should still beat Akron, but if you enjoying watching Big Ten teams potentially losing to MAC teams, this is probably the game for you!
  • Virginia @ Southern Mississippi (CBSCS): Things Southern Miss has done twice this season that Virginia hasn't: win football games. I fully expect this trend to continue.
6:45: Cincinnati @ Oregon State (FSN): Cincy has very quietly gotten off a rocking start, first by destroying Rutgers in their opener and then laying the expected beatdown on a directional DI-AA opponent. Oregon State probably won't lose by 67 points, but they should lose all the same.

  • Florida State @ Brigham Young (Versus): Hey, FSU, remember that time you played Jacksonville State and then only won 19-9 and had a very real chance of losing? Oh, wait, that was last week. I mean, yeah, BYU will take all the BCS conference scalps it can get, but if they win I don't think it'll even technically be an upset. I'm going with BYU as well.
  • Louisiana-Lafayette @ Louisiana State (ESPNU): UL-Lafayette, don't get too hyped up off your victory over K-State! You'll need a level head and approximately 50 turnovers in your favor to beat LSU, most likely.
  • Mississippi State @ Vanderbilt (SEC): See, at least this is between two mediocre/bad SEC teams! This is what made JP great! Well, except that this is way too late in the day, but whatever! Also, I like Vandy.
7:30: Air Force @ New Mexico (CBSCS): New Mexico: still bad! Air Force should take this pretty easily, provided they're not too depressed about losing to Minnesota.

  • Georgia @ Arkansas (ESPN): So, uh, Georgia's defense isn't all that good, I guess? Conventional wisdom says they're going to lose to Arkansas, but the problem is I'm not entirely sure why they should. But then there's the part of me that, you know, hates Georgia and pretty much wants them to lose 78-0. So I'll go with that.
  • West Virginia @ Auburn (ESPN2): If I told you, when this game was scheduled, that one of these teams would have a dynamic, high scoring offense, who would've said it was Auburn? Yet here we are, provided the first two games are any indication. (Which I hope they are, since that's the basis for pretty much all of my predictions.) Is Auburn for real? I hope so, because otherwise I'll looking bad for picking them.
8:00: Texas Tech @ Texas (ABC): While Texas Tech may not ever rebuild now that Leach has The System going, it's hard to say exactly why they should win in Austin either. All the pressure is on Texas, of course - I don't think they can afford to lose any games this year. I still like them to win, though.

10:15: Kansas State @ California-Los Angeles (FSN): UCLA isn't exactly good or anything, but Kansas State is exactly bad. I think that sentence makes sense. What also makes sense: taking the Bruins.

11:00: Hawaii @ Nevada-Las Vegas (CBSCS): Unlike UNLV, Hawaii actually succeeded in beating their Pac-10 team last weekend. That said, this is Hawaii's middle game in a three-game road trip on the mainland, which is literally a trip - the team doesn't even fly back to Hawaii between these games. Which is probably better for them, actually, but I would still think this takes its toll. But still, Hawaii ran out to a 35-6 lead by the half against Wazzou and never looked back on the way to 489 yards passing. Yeesh. I have to take the Warriors here.

That's all for this week!

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