This Weekend in College Football: Week 3

As usual, all times Eastern and all predictions wrong.


  • Pennsylvania State @ Illinois (FOX): Okay Penn State, it’s time to go on the road and put up or shut up a bit if this indeed the year you’re going to beat Michigan and/or Ohio State. That said, I think they’ll win this game.
  • Florida State @ Boston College (ABC): BC escaped Holy Cross last week. I think FSU will be fine here.
  • Louisiana State @ Mississippi State (ESPN): I don’t think Miss State will beat LSU, but also think this game won’t do much to quell the questions around the current state of LSU.
  • Wake Forest @ Old Dominion (ESPN2): Wake all the way here.
  • North Dakota @ Boise State (FS1)
  • Georgia Southern @ Wisconsin (BTN): Wisconsin lost once again to Wazzu. While this Southern team is Sun Belt competent, they’re not “beat even a retooling Wisconsin with a first year coach” competent.
  • Louisville vs. Indiana (@Indianapolis, IN; BTN): If you like flailing, this is the game for you! Neither of these teams are good and the game is in a “neutral” site that happens to be in the middle of Indiana. (Seriously, look at Indianapolis on a map sometime.) I guess I’m going Hooiser here?
  • Iowa State @ Ohio (ESPNU): Matt Campbell is rapidly becoming, if he hasn’t already, an example of a coach who waited too long to cash out and get a bigger job. He’s definitely starting to get a little past his expiration date and the folks in Ames are getting restless. That said, I don’t think they’re going to lose to Ohio or anything.
  • Kansas State @ Missouri (SEC): Yet again, the wrong the Kansas is team is in this game. That said, Mizzou fans will likely be disappointed.
  • Liberty @ Buffalo (CBSSN): Buffalo lost to an FCS team earlier this season, so yeah, speaking of past their expiration date coaches, Mo Linguist is also on that list. It brings me pleasure to say the Flames are going to roll here.
  • Central Connecticut @ Kent State (ESPN+)
  • Long Island @ Baylor (ESPN+)


  • Virginia Military @ North Carolina State (The CW)
  • Weber State @ Utah (Pac12)
  • Massachusetts @ Eastern Michigan (ESPN+)
  • Norfolk State @ Temple (ESPN+)
  • Indiana State @ Ball State (ESPN+)


  • Alabama @ South Florida (ABC): Well, there’s “get right” games, and then there’s “go to Tampa because what you’re about to do is probably illegal in Alabama”-type “get right” games. Bama might score 80.
  • South Carolina @ Georgia (CBS): Georgia’s looked… sleepy in their first several games. So, yeah, we’ll all get excited when Spencer Rattler hits a 60 yard touchdown early in the second quarter for 10-3 lead… and then the Gamecocks will lose 35-10. Book it.
  • Minnesota @ North Carolina (ESPN): Minnesota has looked okay so far this season, while we just saw UNC escape App State once again (to the point where Mack Brown said out loud he was glad he wasn’t going to have to play them anymore). I don’t think the Gophers have the dedication in the same way.
  • Oklahoma @ Tulsa (ESPN2): Yeah, the Sooners will be fine here.
  • San Diego State @ Oregon State (FS1): SDSU already lost to a Pac-12 team at home last weekend, so that doesn’t bode well for their trip to Corvallis.
  • Virginia Tech @ Rutgers (BTN): I, uh, Rutgers I guess? I wouldn’t recommend watching this, that’s for sure.
  • Western Michigan @ Iowa (BTN): The Iowa/Brian Ferentz Drive For 25 continues! So far, through two games Iowa has scored 44 points, which means they actually need to average 26.5 points the rest of the season. They should definitely be able to do so against this WMU squad, but then again, we said that about Utah State.
  • Northwestern @ Duke (ACCN): I may feel more confident about this game being a blowout than any other today, outside of Bama @ USF. Devils all the way.
  • Florida International @ Connecticut (CBSSN): Eh, what the heck, Go Huskies.
  • East Carolina @ Appalachian State (ESPN+)


  • Western Kentucky @ Ohio State (FOX): Okay, this should also be one-sided, but Ohio State has yet to really turn on the jets offensive. That said, they’re probably the most capable of doing so.
  • Tulane @ Southern Mississippi (ESPNU): This is actually a bit of a rivalry, but where these two programs are at the moment doesn’t give me up hope that Southern Miss will be able to hold up their end of the bargain.
  • Idaho @ California (Pac12)


  • North Carolina Central @ California-Los Angeles (Pac12)
  • Northern Colorado @ Washington State (Pac12)
  • Washington @ Michigan State (Peacock): There’s several scandals rocking college football right now, but the most disgusting is what just got Mel Tucker suspended (read: fired) earlier this week. I don’t have the heart to recap it here, but suffice it to say, Huskies all the way.

6:00: Georgia State @ Charlotte (ESPN+)

6:30: Villanova @ Central Florida (ESPN+)


  • Tennessee @ Florida (ESPN): The Vols have looked kinda shaky, but to say that about the Gators would be putting that mildly. This might be another early season anxiety bowl? Then again, Florida fans were already setting expectations for Napier Year 2, while Tennessee has mostly just not lived up to their lofty billing yet. So I have to go with the Vols.
  • Northern Illinois @ Nebraska (FS1): Former GT quarterback Jeff Sims (who won the job back in 2020) has become something of a national college football punchline two games into the Cornhuskers’ season, and, well, he mostly has himself to blame. I’m not sure who’s going to start for the Huskers in this one, but either way, it should go better for them this one.
  • James Madison @ Troy (NFLN): This could well be the game of the week, so it’s worth figuring out where NFL Network is on whatever method you use to get TV. That said, it’s Troy’s to lose at home.
  • Vanderbilt @ Nevada-Las Vegas (CBSS): Is any school better at scheduling “vacation” road games than Vandy? Last season the Dores played at Hawaii, the year before they went to Ft. Collins, in 2018 they went to South Bend. They’ll take a break the next few seasons, but then they’ll head back to Ft. Collins and they’ve got two future trips to Palo Alto on the schedule. It’s certainly the most…adventurous out-of-conference scheduling of any SEC team. At any rate, they’ve also looked kind of decent this year and should have no issues out in Vegas.
  • San Jose State @ Toledo (ESPN+)
  • Stony Brook @ Arkansas State (ESPN+)
  • Duquense @ Coastal Carolina (ESPN+)
  • Samford @ Auburn (ESPN+)
  • Tartleton State @ Texas Tech (ESPN+)
  • North Texas @ Louisiana Tech (ESPN+)
  • Murray State @ Middle Tennessee State (ESPN+)
  • South Alabama @ Oklahoma State (ESPN+)
  • Miami @ Cincinnati (“Battle for the Bell”; ESPN+)
  • Louisiana @ Alabama-Birmingham (ESPN+)
  • Texas Southern @ Rice (ESPN+)
  • Prairie View A&M @ Southern Methodist (ESPN+)


  • Syracuse @ Purdue (NBC): This is certainly a football game that will be happening, but I think most eyes will be elsewhere. And also I guess I’ll pick Purdue?
  • Pittsburgh @ West Virginia (“Backyard Brawl”; ABC): We’re midway through the current revival of the Backyard Brawl, and thank goodness because this week 3 is otherwise kind of bleak. That said, this game last year produced a result that was way above where WVU was at any point the rest of the season. That said, while Pitt isn’t like good this year (they lost to a retooling Cincinatti last week), they optimism for both WVU and their coach is pretty low right now that. Winning this game is probably about the only way Neal Brown keeps his job. So I’m going to take Pitt.
  • Brigham Young @ Arkansas (ESPN2): Two years ago, my favorite college football podcast, the Shutdown Fullcast coined the term “WOMP” to describe the physical, smashing quality of the Arkansas offense under Sam Pittman, led by the nation’s WOMPiest quarterback, KJ Jefferson (6’4″, 246 pounds). KJ is still there, but the shine is off a little bit (though that said, they have so far blown out their first two opponents). But if there’s any opponent that also enjoys WOMPin’ (and adds a dash of playin’ dirty), it’s the BYU Cougars. If you think modern football is to finesse, with all the passing and lack of hitting and whatnot, this might be the game for you. I think BYU stands a solid chance of pulling off the upset, but I’ll play it safe and take the Hogs.
  • Bowling Green @ Michigan (BTN): One more merciful week until the Harbaugh suspension ends and hopefully sanity prevails again in Ann Arbor. (That said, Harbaugh has been extremely thoughtful about the interim coaches taking charge in his stead for these games.)
  • Akron @ Kentucky (ESPNU): Kentucky will be fine in this one.
  • Georgia Tech @ Mississippi (SEC): Hoo boy, so the difficultly level sure just spiked. Last week’s outing against South Carolina State was never in doubt. The offense showed signs of competence, similar to the ones that briefly emerged in the second quarter against Louisville. The defense is still a bit of a concern, which if you’re saying that about SC State, well, that doesn’t bode well for playing Ole Miss at the grove. That said, I don’t think we’re going to get shut out this time around.


  • Texas Christian @ Houston (FOX): Houston lost to Rice last week. ‘Nuff said.
  • Florida Atlantic @ Clemson (ACCN): Clemson will be fine, which isn’t really good enough for their recent excellence, but they’re in no danger here.
  • Wyoming @ Texas (LHN): Texas teams of old would fall on their face in this kind of game after a big win. The thing about their win in Tuscaloosa last week, though, it wasn’t just that they beat Alabama. It hasn’t happened often since Bama’s dynasty run began, but I mean, come on, Chad Kelly once beat them. No, it’s that the Horns didn’t get lucky, or use a new system to exploit a beefy, talented, but slow defense, a la Texas A&M with Johnny Manziel. No, Texas was just flat out the better team, and they won. And they’ll win this one.
  • Hawaii @ Oregon (Pac12): The Ducks made it… interesting on the road in Lubbock last weekend, but well, lots of weird stuff happens out in Lubbock. They’ll fine here.
  • Sacramento State @ Stanford (Pac12)
  • New Mexico State @ New Mexico (“Rio Grande Rivalry”; MWN): Get out your green chile salsa and sit down for some football, New Mexico style. The Lobos will definitely be favored, but I don’t see this being a blow out or anything.

8:30: Jackson State @ Texas State (ESPN+)

10:00: Colorado State @ Colorado (“Rocky Mountain Showdown”; ESPN): I still think the Buffs are going to get stung at some point (the offensive line is still light and Sanders hangs on to the ball too long), but the Rams aren’t going to be the team that makes them feel pain.


  • Fresno State @ Arizona State (FS1): Fresno already beat a Power 5 team this year, and I’ll say they’ll do it again.
  • Kansas @ Nevada (CBSSN): Nevada lost 33-6 to FCS Idaho last weekend and to USC 66-14 the week before. Kansas will be gunning for 66, I think.

10:00: Texas-El Paso @ Arizona (Pac12): We all want to believe UTEP is a fun quirky team, but the magic isn’t there this year, as shown by last week’s 38-7 loss to Northwestern. Arizona will be fine here.