Week four on the college football schedule features two big contests. Auburn travels to the Little Apple – Manhattan, Kansas to face the Kansas State Wildcats on Thursday. Saturday’s biggest game features two Top 25 teams with Clemson opening the its ACC schedule at Florida State. There are several other good non-conference games on the slate. in what is primarily the last weekend of non-conference play. Below is a what I’ll be watching this weekend.
No.5 AUBURN 2-0 at No. 20 KANSAS STATE 2-0 This marks a big step up in competition for the K-State as they have opened the season with wins over Stephen F. Austin and Iowas State. The Wildcats have had a bye-week to get prepare for this game, and head coach Bill Snyder has had his team focusing on staying disciplined on defense. “If we can stay in our running lanes we will be able to compete,” said Snyder. Auburn will try to dominate the line of scrimmage and use their rushing attack to control the clock. Cameron Artis-Payne and Corey Grant have combined to rush for 465 yards in two games, and the team is averaging 330 yards-per-game. Auburn has won all three meetings in this series, and Thursday night, they’ll make it four. TIGERS FEAST ON WILDCATS 41-21
No. 22 CLEMSON 1-1 AT No.1 FLORIDA STATE 2-0 The winner of this game has gone onto win the ACC title the past three seasons. Last year, I called for a Clemson win over the Seminoles. I was dead wrong as Florida State pounded Clemson 51-14. The Tigers fell to Georgia in the opener but had a nice bounce back, winning over South Carolina State 73-7. The last two seasons, the Seminoles have won 18 in-a-row and 28 of 30. This game took on a new dynamic Tuesday, after star quarterback Jameis Winston was seen yelling an obscene sexual phrase on campus — he is suspended for the first half of the game. I know Winston won’t start this game, but the Noles are 16-0 with him at QB! The Seminoles band together, and Winston does enough in the second half. SEMINOLES FEAST ON THE TIGERS 33-17
MISSISSIPPI STATE 3-0 AT No.8 LSU 3-0 Both teams enter this game undefeated for the first time since 1997, in the SEC opener for both clubs. LSU has held opponents scoreless the past nine quarters, and the Tigers defense is ranked second in the FBS, allowing only eight points per game. Dan Mullen is 0-5 against LSU, and the Tigers have won 14 straight over the Bulldogs. I really think that could come to an end here, as the Bulldogs have the horses on both lines to compete with the Tigers. Quarterback Dak Prescott leads the Bulldogs attack. He is the current leader among SEC quarterbacks in career rushing touchdowns (19) and rushing yards (1,197). These two teams are going to fight like cats and dogs, but the Tigers will kick a late field goal to win. TIGERS FEAST, TAKE BARK OUT OF BULLDOGS 23-20
No.4 OKLAHOMA 3-0 AT WEST VIRGINIA 2-1 The Sooners come into this game with the eight-ranked defense in the nation allowing only 11 points-per-game and featuring a top-notch secondary. That secondary will be put to the test on Saturday as Mountaineers Quarterback Clint Trickett has been phenomenal! His 1,224 passing yards so far this season ranks third in the FBS, something achieved even with Alabama among its opponents. Morgantown is a tough place to play when you have a fired up home crowd and this crowd will be ready to roll! Two years ago the Sooners went to Morgantown and eked out a 50-49 victory. I think these two will pick it up from there. This game comes down to what Trevor Knight can do against the Mountaineers defense without leading rusher Keith Ford. SOONERS CIRCLE THE WAGONS AND REALIZE THE ONLY DEFENSE IS OFFENSE, OKLAHOMA 44-41
OLD DOMINION 2-1 AT RICE 0-2 The Monarchs will be making their Conference USA debut, travelling to Houston to take on last year’s conference champion, the Rice Owls! They feature a very experienced team with 17 returning starters. Quarterback Taylor Heinicke has thrown for 745 yards and five TDs, and he can also run if needed. Tailbacks Gerald Johnson and Ray Lawry provide a solid ground game. THE MONARCHS GET THEIR FIRST EVER CONFERENCE VICTORY 34-27.
A bonus pick because this is a game you shouldn’t miss:
NORTH CAROLINA 2-0 AT EAST CAROLINA 2-1 This might be one of the best games of the weekend. The Pirates got everyone’s attention last week with their road win at Virginia Tech, and last year the Pirates plundered Chapel Hill, 55-31. East Carolina Quarterback Shane Carden has already thrown for over 1,000 yards and seven TDs. He’ll be the difference in this game as the Pirates show no quarters, making it two in-a-row over the Heels and go to 2-0 versus the ACC this year! TAR HEELS SENT TO DAVY JONES LOCKER, 31-17
SIX-PACK SPECIAL – SIX TEAMS, SIX WORDS, THREE WINNERS
- VIRGINIA AT BYU Altitude and attitude leaves Cavs gassed, Cougars 31-14
- IOWA AT PITT Steelers uniforms don’t help in Pittsburgh, Panthers 23-17
- UTAH AT MICHIGAN No Big Love in Big House, Wolverines 40-31
SEASON RECORD PICKING WINNERS
- WHAT I’M WATCHING 9-3
- UPSET EXPRESS 3-0
- SIX-PACK SPECIAL 0-0 (First Picks)