What to watch this weekend

 

A LOOK AT LAST WEEK

A great weekend of football started Thursday night as Brandon Doughty outshined Jeff Driskel leading his Hilltoppers over Louisiana Tech 41-38.   The win moved Western Kentucky to 2-0, and served notice that they could be in the discussion for a New Year’s day bowl.   Temple, also improved to 2-0 with their second consecutive upset stunning Cincinnati 34-26.    Suddenly the Owls look like they could be on course for a 10-win season, and they could be 7-0, when they hosting Notre Dame in late October.

FACTS OF THE WEEK

  •     Eastern Michigan won their first non-conference road game since 1988.
  •     BYU needed a “Hail Mary” from Freshman Tanner Mangum for the second week in a row to defeat Boise State.
  •     USC has already played a total of 14 true freshmen!
  •     Ray Lawry (Old Dominion) had his second consecutive 200 yard rushing game and leads the nation in rushing with 438 yards.

HUGE UPSETS DERAIL BOTH ARKANSAS AND LOUISVILLE –  The Cardinals game we should have seen possibly coming.  They were off a tough opener with Auburn and have an ACC showdown with Clemson Thursday night.  The Razorbacks simply went away from their bread and butter, which is a pounding running game, in favor of a passing attack that proved fatal.

SOONERS RALLY, WHILE INJURY DERAILS NOTRE DAME I was also surprised by Oklahoma’s rally.   The Sooners trailed by 14 points entering the fourth quarter but then held the Vols to just six plays on offense.    Baker Mayfield hit Sterling Shepard with an 18-yard scoring pass in the second overtime period to secure the victor.  For Notre Dame, will the loss of Malik Zaire dash any hopes that Notre Dame had of making the playoff?

TOP GAMES THIS WEEK

No.11 Clemson (2-0)  at  Louisville  (0-2)     This has suddenly become a must win game for the Cardinals.  Who starts at QB for Louisville in this game is anyone’s guess as Head Coach Bobby Petrino has already played three quarterbacks in just two games.   I don’t think it matters because the offensive line has failed to protect the quarterback, and has failed to open holes in the running game.    Two of the Cardinals better receivers are also likely out for this contest.    The Tigers, despite playing two cupcakes to start the season, have looked sharp.    I expect more of the same here.    TIGERS ROAR PAST CARDINALS 36-21.

No.14 Georgia Tech (2-0)  at  No. 8 Notre Dame (2-0)     The loss of quarterback Malik Zaire, has really taken a lot of the shine off this matchup.   I had circled this game has a potential classic, before the season began.   De’Shone Kizer will make his starting debut for the Irish.    He looked good filling in for Zaire last week, but will surely face more heat from the Yellow Jackets.    Tech has played flawless football in the opening two weeks.    Head coach Paul Johnson has been pointing towards this game all off-season.    I liked the Techsters before the injury to Zaire.    RAMBLIN’ WRECK ROLLS ON 33-24.

No.15 Mississippi (2-0)  at  No.2 Alabama (2-0)      I can’t wait to watch this one!    This comes down to who has the better game between Derrick Henry or Chad Kelly.    Kelly has looked sharp in preparation for his SEC debut.    The Rebels have hit on all cylinders, scoring 76 and 73 points respectively in two wins!    Laremy Tunsil, hopes to return at offensive tackle, which would give the Rebels a much need boost.    The Tide hope to rely on a pounding running game, led by Henry.    The key to victory for Alabama, will be to get Henry over the 150 yard barrier.    This would insure eating up the clock and playing with a lead.    Success on the ground will ultimately open up the passing game for Jake Coker.   TIDE GETS SWEET REVENGE, 37-27.

No.18 Auburn (2-0)  at  No.13 LSU (1-0)      Who would have thought that Auburn’s defense would be responsible for a 2-0 start.   Will Muschamp’s defense has played “lights out” in the opening weeks of the season.   Tiger quarterback Jeremy Johnson has been wildly inconsistent, tossing five interceptions.   LSU is coming off a big win over Mississippi State.   Brandon Harris has taken over the reigns at quarterback and has multiple weapons in Leonard Fournette, Travin Dural and Malachi Dupre.    Muschamp has stated that stopping Fournette is the top priority.    Harris played against Auburn last year and struggled mightily.    I may be crazy, but I think Johnson has a breakout performance on a national stage!     AUBURN WINS THIS CLASH OF TIGERS 26-20.

No.19 BYU (2-0)  at  No.10 UCLA      Ok, BYU could easily be 0-2 and yet they come into this contest ranked in the top 25?   Tanner Magnum has looked good filling in for Taysom Hill.    Magnum will make his first road start in a hostile environment.    Bruins fans have fallen in love with true freshman quarterback Josh Rosen.    He has the poise of a junior and the moxie of a senior.    The Bruins will bring the kitchen sink to stop Magnum from getting any type of rhythm.    With no semblance of a Cougar running game, this game becomes lopsided.     NO OPPORTUNITY FOR “HAIL MARY” THIS WEEK, BRUINS 34-17.

UPSET EXPRESS

SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI (1-1) AT TEXAS STATE (1-1)      Both teams enter this affair with identical 1-1 records.   The Golden Eagles are a road underdog.    Head coach Todd Monken has his best team yet.    Quarterback Nick Mullens has played well and should have a field day against a porous Bobcat defense.    I picked the Eagles to land in a bowl game this year.    A win here will go along way to that goal.    EAGLES FLY HIGH 41-27.

PICK SIX-SIX GAMES, SIX WORDS, SIX PICKS

ILLINOIS AT NORTH CAROLINA—–Huge non-conference tilt goes to HEELS IN A SHOOTOUT 45-42.

WESTERN KENTUCKY AT INDIANA—–Loss of Leon Allen hurts Hilltoppers.   HOOSIER MAMA 41-33.

FLORIDA AT KENTUCKY—–The Gators have won 28 straight games against UK!     STREAK STOPS HERE!   CATS GO WILD 29-28.

STANFORD AT USC—–Too much Kessler in this one.   TROJANS BIG 41-17.

RUTGERS AT PENN STATE—–Cats exposed Scarlet Knights last week.    MORE OF THE SAME THIS SATURDAY, LIONS 28-7.

NORTHWESTERN AT DUKE——Wildcat lineman Ifeadi Odenigbo “we expect another shutout”.   REALLY?   CATS BEDEVILED 27-14.

LAST WEEKS RESULTS

KEY GAMES    4-1    SEASON   7-3

UPSET EXPRESS (1-0) STRAIGHT UP (1-0) SPREAD     SEASON (1-1) STRAIGHT UP (2-0) SPREAD

SIX PACK   5-1    SEASON   9-3

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