This Weekend in College Football: Week 2

This week, I’ve resumed my usual policy of only listing FBS vs. FBS games. As usual, all times Eastern and all predictions wrong.

Friday
8:00: Miami @ Florida Atlantic (FS1): The Schnell is going to do the coin toss for this one, which is extremely fitting. After that, though, things figure out to downhill for the Owls.

9:00: Utah State @ Utah (ESPN2): Wacky things can always happen in this edition of the various Beehive State rivalries, but I’m going to go with the Utes.

Saturday
11:30: South Florida @ Florida State (ESPN): ‘Noles.

Noon:

  • Oregon State @ Michigan (ABC): In this early edition of Pacific Northwest versus Midwest, this may be a useful barometer for both teams. Michigan had a respectable loss to their Pac-12 foe, Utah, last weekend, while Oregon State sort of sputtered and only beat Weber State 26-7. Perhaps it’ll be just right that Harbaugh gets his first win back at Michigan in the Big House.
  • Buffalo @ Pennsylvania State (ESPN2/ESPNU): Penn State suffered an ignoble loss to Temple last weekend, and starting quarterback Christian Hackenberg took a beating. It figures that he, and his team, will have more success against the Bulls, though.
  • Miami @ Wisconsin (ESPN2/ESPNU): The Badgers get a visit from everyone’s confusingly named MAC team. Fun fact: the University of Miami has played Miami University three times, in 1945, 1946, and 1987. The ‘U’ has won all three.
  • Kansas State @ Texas-San Antonio (FS1): K-State takes a visit to the Alamodome. I got nothin’ else besides that.
  • Army @ Connecticut (CBSS): Oof. UConn at least beat the FCS team they played last week, though.
  • Houston @ Louisville (ACC/RSN): Louisville figures to recover from their tough, and confusing, loss to Auburn last weekend.
  • Bowling Green @ Maryland (BTN):

12:30: Wake Forest @ Syracuse (ACC): I don’t have to watch this! You can’t make me! And why are there intra-conference matchups in Week 2? Both pounded their FCS foes last week, so it’s hard to glean anything useful from that. Let’s pretend that I flipped a coin and that as a result I picked Syracuse.

3:30:

  • Georgia @ Vanderbilt (CBS): About the only watchlist Vandy is on this year is whether or not they will win any games.
  • Notre Dame @ Virginia (ABC): While not as hapless as the above Commodores, there don’t figure to be a lot of wins on the schedule for the Cavs.
  • Fresno State @ Mississippi (ESPN2): Ah, if only this were the Fresno State from 10 years ago or so. Alas, this one will be a near walkover for the Rebs.
  • Washington State @ Rutgers (ESPNU): Folks are already starting to write the obituaries for the Mike Leach area at Wazzou, and it’s hard to disagree. After losing to Portland State last week, it’s hard to see them beating Rutgers.
  • Minnesota @ Colorado State (CBSS): Minnesota gave TCU all they wanted last weekend, something they may also do against Nebraska, Michigan, Ohio State, and Wisconsin. They can really solidify themselves as a threat by sweeping the rest of their non-conference schedule. This game will prove the most difficult, but they should win.
  • Tulane @ Georgia Tech (ACC/RSN): My first Georgia Tech home game in nine years was a cakewalk. At some point late in the first half, I looked up the lyrics to Cal’s “Stanford Jonah” (which has a very similar tune to GT’s “Up With the White and Gold”) but I never got comfortable enough with them to give them a real shot. At any rate, Tulane should provide stiffer resistance. How much is an open question, though. Tulane got pounded 37-7 by Duke last week, which does not provide much hope for the Green Wave.
  • Hawaii @ Ohio State (BTN): So if you haven’t heard, Hawaii is now the “Rainbow Warriors” again after a brief haitus. As such, they’re also bringing back some wonderfully retro uniforms. As for the actual game, well, I still think those unis are going to be cool.

4:00: Middle Tennessee State @ Alabama (SEC): The Blue Raiders will hop on TN-840 (or maybe get on I-24 first), drive down I-65 south, and then get on I-20/59 toward Tuscaloosa, get beat really bad, and then go back they way they came.

4:30: Iowa @ Iowa State (FOX): Both teams scored 31 points against their FCS opponents last week. As for this game, it’s basically a coinflip. Usually it’s more hilarious when Iowa State wins and then wins like one other game all year, so I’ll go with that.

5:00: San Diego State @ California (Pac12): The Pac-12 will be more interesting if the Golden Bears are back. They can definitely score points, but the real question for this season is if they have any sort of defense. Even if they don’t, they should have little trouble with the Aztecs.

6:00: Oklahoma @ Tennessee (ESPN): I’ll buy that Tennessee is better, but I don’t buy that they’re that much better than the Sooners. And if the Vols do win here, it’ll be all ESS-EEE-CEE all the time for the rest of the season. So I’m going with the Sooners.

7:00:

  • East Carolina @ Florida (ESPN2): The Gators scored 61 points last week. 61! Two digit numbers were not often associated with the Gators offense recently. That figures to be different for the remainder of the season. East Carolina doesn’t figure to prevent them from doing so.
  • Ball State @ Texas A&M (ESPNU): Only beating VMI by 12 does not inspire much confidence about Ball State’s chances here.
  • Arizona @ Nevada (CBSS): ‘Zona escaped a grisly fate after getting off to a slow start against UT-San Antonio last week. The game in Reno doesn’t figure to give them much trouble, but still.

7:30: Kentucky @ South Carolina (SEC): Hey, Kentucky is still bad, right? Yep, they are. Okay, good. Makes this a lot easier.

8:00:

  • Oregon @ Michigan State (ABC): One of the marquee games of the season, both the Ducks and Spartans will face off in a wonderful, early-season test of strength-versus-strength. Last year’s edition featured a 46-27 Oregon win, but the return trip figures to be more difficult, what with a first-year starter at QB and all. That said, I’m going with the Ducks until proven otherwise.
  • Temple @ Cincinnati (ESPNEWS): Temple just beat Penn State for the first time since 1941 and made them looking bad while doing so. Good on you, Owls! That said, I probably wouldn’t get too excited, but a win versus Cincy might convince me it wasn’t a fluke. For now, though, I’m sticking with the Bearcats.
  • South Alabama @ Nebraska (BTN): If I were South Alabama, I would milk having USA as my acronym for all it’s worth. Remind the folks up in Lincoln that “if you beat us, you’re actually beating AMERICA”. Maybe it’ll work for a quarter or two?
  • Idaho @ Southern California (Pac12): Idaho will probably be really hoping to get back to the Kibbie Dome sooner rather than later.

9:15: Louisiana State @ Mississippi State (ESPN): Oh hey, an early season SEC clash! I really think that the Big Ten has the right idea when it comes to in-conference games in September: don’t have them. Alas, we’re stuck with trying to say anything meaningful about a game that really counts for both these teams in the second week of the season. LSU’s game last week got canceled due to weather, so we really have zero information coming into this game. And the Tigers will also get Auburn at home next week! Madness. Anyway, I guess I’ll have another chance to rant about that next week. For now, I’m taking the Tigers on the road, apropos of nothing.

10:15:

  • Boise State @ Brigham Young (ESPN2): These former Mountain West foes face off, fresh off wins over Power 5 teams. Unfortunately, BYU lost its all-everything starting QB in the miracle win at Nebraska, so I’m going to have to go with Boise.
  • San Jose State @ Air Force (ESPNU): Both sides pounded a FCS school last weekend, so my early season coin flip is going with… Air Force.

10:30:

  • Central Florida @ Stanford (FS1): While I think Stanford will beat UCF, they really, really need to figure out how make their offense work or this season will not end well for either them or David Shaw.
  • California-Los Angeles @ Nevada-Las Vegas (CBSS): Many a Los Angeles resident has made a weekend trek to Vegas. UCLA’s odds of a win are a lot better than most of their compatriots, though.

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