Week 2 Record: 18-5 (78.2%)
Overall Record: 41-6 (87.2%)
A poor week last week caused my average to dip almost 9%. I whiffed on a lot of the big games, mainly the Michigan game. It’s still a long season, though, and I’m going to bounce back this weekend.
#8 Baylor 51, Buffalo 17.
Bryce Petty is expected to return in this one after missing last week’s game due to a back injury. Even if he didn’t play though, the Bears simply have too much talent for Buffalo. Expect Baylor to score at least 35 in the first half, and don’t expect to see Petty for more than a quarter and a half.
#2 Oregon 61, Wyoming 20.
Oregon’s defense showed us a lot last week. As the game progressed against Michigan State, the defense just got stronger and stronger. That is scary for opponents. Wyoming might be able to move the ball some, but the Cowboys don’t have nearly enough firepower to stay with the Ducks. Mariota will cruise yet again and the Ducks will prove why they deserve the number two ranking.
#3 Alabama 45, Southern Miss 3.
Again, this game is only interesting to watch for the quarterback play. Who starts? I would assume Sims, but you never know. What does Coker do when he comes in? After watching both quarterbacks in game situations, I think Sims is the guy for now. Coker doesn’t have the command he needs to quarterback the Tide. Also, expect another 100+ yard day for Tide receiver Amari Cooper.
#4 Oklahoma 38, Tennessee 20
As I said on Gray’s Sports Update last night, I have a lot of faith in this Vols team. I think they’re a year away from where they want to be, but they can still compete against the Sooners in Norman. Justin Worley has shown a lot so far this year, and he has a host of talented receivers around him. That being said, playing in Norman will be ust too tough for Tennessee to get the win. Trevor Knight will explode in the second half to pull away from the young Vols, showing that his last game against an SEC defense (vs. Alabama in the Sugar Bowl) wasn’t a fluke.
#6 Georgia 27, #24 South Carolina 17.
Georgia is just too good offensively, and South Carolina is just too suspect defensively. That’s what this game comes down to: can the Gamecocks stop Gurley? And, even if they slow down Gurley, can they stop the entourage behind him including Nick Chubb and Keith Marshall? I say no, and I don’t think it’s close. Georgia will pull out ahead early,
#7 Texas A&M 52, Rice 24.
Kenny Trill will be back at it this weekend against an outmanned Rice team. The Owls can move the ball (they showed a little bit of that against Notre Dame), but they won’t be able to score nearly enough points to beat the Aggies. This game will prove just how much progress the Texas A&M defense has made this year; they played well against South Carolina, but can they back it up?
#9 USC 34, Boston College 13.
An East Coast trip for the Trojans after last week’s miraculous win over Stanford shouldn’t be much of a challenge. Cody Kessler has shown his moxie early in the season so far, and I expect his great play to continue in this game. Tyler Murphy, the Florida transfer, may give the Trojan defense some problems, but when it’s all said and done this should be an easy win for Sark’s squad.
#10 LSU 31, Louisiana-Monroe 7.
The LSU freshman will have another shot to shine against an average Louisiana-Monroe team. The Warhawks beat Wake Forest to open the year, but the Tigers from Baton Rouge are a whole different animal. Les Miles rolls.
#11 Notre Dame 38, Purdue 21.
Notre Dame had, in my mind, the most impressive performance last week simply because I had them losing to Michigan and they wound up winning 31-0. The defense looks stronger than in 2011-2012, Everett Golson is playing locked in, and Purdue is still terrible. That all spells out to an easy Irish win.
#12 UCLA 20, Texas 6.
Does Texas have the resiliency or even the talent to stay in this one? As Jerry Palm said on Gray’s Sports Update, the Longhorns have to start playing for each other. Last week’s 41-7 loss was embarrassing. Now, against a premiere Pac-12 opponent, can Charlie Strong will his team to victory? I don’t think so. Again, Texas will struggle to score against a UCLA defense that will look a lot better than it did last week. Don’t expect to be blown away by Brett Hundley in this one, though.
#14 Ole Miss 43, Louisiana-Lafayette 21.
Bo Wallace played a good game against Vanderbilt. Typically in his career, Wallace has risen to his best level against inferior opponents. The Ole Miss defense has played fiercely so far this year, and I think we continue to see the “best of Bo” against the Ragin’ Cajuns.
#15 Stanford 37, Army 10.
Stanford should be flabbergasted and hacked off that they have a loss; last week’s game against USC was flocked with missed chances. I would assume David Shaw will have his team exact revenge this week against the Black Knights.
#16 Arizona State 42, Colorado 24.
Colorado has looked better this year; Still, I don’t think the Buffs will have an answer for Tyler Kelly and this Arizona State offense. This game will be one final tune-up for the Sun Devils before they take on a brutal stretch that includes UCLA, USC, and Stanford.
#17 Virginia Tech 26, East Carolina 21.
East Carolina and Shane Carden should be able to challenge the Hokie corners; certainly more than the young freshman at Ohio State did. Still, Michael Brewer is doing something special with this team. I think the Hokies are back, and even though East Carolina will give them a late scare, Beamer Ball will improve to 3-0.
#20 Missouri 48, UCF 20.
Maty Mauk is playing unbelievable football right now. The defense is rolling, and I expect that domination to continue against a UCF team that doesn’t quite know its identity on offense. Missouri will once again prove that they weren’t just a flash in the pan.
#21 Louisville 24, Virginia 20.
Virginia has a very good defense. Louisville has a very good offense. Those two cancel out, which means this will be all about the Virginia offense vs. the Louisville defense. I would give the edge to Petrino’s club, simply based off of what I saw against Miami (FL) the first week of the season. I don’t think the Wahoos have enough firepower on O to crack the Louisville D.
#22 Ohio State 35, Kent State 10.
Can Ohio State bounce back after last week’s disappointing loss to Virginia Tech? Luckily, Kent State is on the schedule this week, so bouncing back shouldn’t be much of a problem. This week needs to be used to fix the problems have become obvious through the first two weeks of the year.
Texas Tech 30, Arkansas 28.
Arkansas’ pass defense is sparse. Texas Tech’s run defense is even worse. Arkansas loves to run, and Texas Tech loves to pass. So, which unit breaks first? I think that Arkansas will go away from the run in the second half, just like they did against Auburn. That’ll help the Red Raiders because their secondary isn’t that bad. Webb should have a good game, and Kingsbury will use a late field goal to get his squad to 3-0.
Iowa 17, Iowa State 12.
Maybe the ugliest game of the week, this face-off is all about who shoots themselves in the foot the least. Just based off of the eye test and overall talent, I like Iowa. The Hawkeyes have got to show us something if they want to prove that they can contend in the Big Ten. I think this game is that start of that process.
That’s the list for the week! Tell me what you think!
Week 1 Record: 23-1 (95.8%)
Solid Week 1, but I want a perfect week. This time around, there are a few more toss-ups on the slate. Here we go!
#1 Florida State 48, The Citadel 7.
Jameis Winston and Florida State get going once again as they hum against this FCS team. The defense needs to prove a point in this match-up; a big day from the Bulldogs would definitely bring up more question marks.
#2 Alabama 44, Florida Atlantic 10.
This game will be a blowout, but it might still be worth watching simply to get a look at Jacob Coker. We’re assuming he’s going to play; Saban said he would and that this was still a QB “competition.” How will Coker do in his first real action and can Blake Sims back up last week’s performance with another good outing? In my opinion, I think Coker will have the better game.
#7 Michigan State 31, #3 Oregon 23.
I am sold on Michigan State. I honestly believe that they are the most SEC-like team in America, and I think they will give Oregon fits. All eyes will be on Marcus Mariota; this could be his early season Heisman moment. At the same time, a loss for Sparty could severely hurt the Big Ten’s CFP stock. I think this game will be tight early, but in the end Michigan State will be just too physical for the Ducks. I think Connor Cook throws for three touchdowns and leads Mark Dantonio’s squad to a huge win.
#4 Oklahoma 31, Tulsa 13.
Trevor Knight played extremely well against Louisiana Tech, and I think he continues his run against the Golden Hurricanes. Tulsa has had a rough few years; it took two overtimes to beat Tulane last week, and I simply don’t think they can compete with the Sooners.
#5 Auburn 56, San Jose State 20.
Auburn’s defense has something to prove, but SJSU won’t be able to keep up. The Tigers will roll; watch for Cameron Artis-Payne to get over 150 rush yards in this one.
#8 Ohio State 28, Virginia Tech 25.
Ohio State still worries me. The loss of Braxton Miller really cannot be overstated. Even though the offense played better in the fourth quarter against Navy, I still feel like the Buckeyes have a long way to go. On the other side, Virginia Tech comes in with Texas Tech transfer Michael Brewer as quarterback. Brewer hasn’t shown anything amazing yet, but this could be his chance. I like the Hokies to take a lead into halftime, but I think Ohio State will make another second half comeback to steal a win in Columbus.
#9 Texas A&M 63, Lamar 14.
Poor Lamar. Kenny Trill is going to go insane in this one.
#10 Baylor 52, Northwestern State 0.
If I were Art Briles, I wouldn’t play Bryce Petty even if he is available. Petty hurt his back against SMU, cracking his vertebrae. Simply put, there are bigger and better things ahead this season for Baylor. Risking a re-injury to get him a start in basically an automatic win would no be smart.
#11 UCLA 41, Memphis 17.
Memphis is no Virginia. The Cavaliers did a great job shutting down the Bruins’ attack. Brett Hundley looked rushed and pedestrian against UVA, but that all will change against Memphis. The Tigers will get crushed and UCLA will show us how good they can be.
#12 LSU 38, Sam Houston State 7.
Sam Houston State is a decent FCS team–one of the best actually. Watching the battle of Brandon Harris-Anthony Jennings will be interesting. Plus, can Leonard Fournette show us his potential in this game after a poor effort against Wisconsin?
#13 Stanford 27, #14 USC 26.
This is one of the best games of the weekend. Steve Sarkisian’s squad looked fantastic against Fresno State, and Cody Kessler did a great job spreading the ball around. Stanford comes in with a veteran quarterback and a tough defense that will be gearing to shut down the Trojans. This will be a wonderful contest, but I expect the Cardinal to win on a last-second field goal.
#15 Ole Miss 34, Vanderbilt 6.
A few weeks ago, I thought that Vanderbilt would make this a tough game. After seeing the disaster in Week 1 though, I can now guarantee an Ole Miss win. Bo Wallace will only throw two picks this week.
Michigan 31, #16 Notre Dame 27.
It brings a tear to my eyes that this is the (possible) final year of this rivalry. It’s brought us many great memories over the years, and I think this final game will be just as epic. Michigan show that they can run the ball against App State, and Devin Gardner to Devin Funchess might have been the connection of the weekend. Notre Dame looked re-energized with Everett Golson back at quarterback. I like Michigan to win this one on a late drive that concludes with a pass from Devin to Devin.
#17 Arizona State 51, New Mexico 17.
Tyler Kelly continues his early season tear continues against the outmatched Lobos. The Sun Devils should jump out to a big lead early and never look back.
#18 Wisconsin 30, Western Illinois 3.
Since Joel Stave is apparently out for a while, Tanner McEvoy will be the starter the whole game. I expect McEvoy to finally get on track, for Melvin Gordan to have a huge game, and for the Badgers’ defense to flex its muscles in a huge win to get to 1-1.
#19 Nebraska 66, McNeese State 7.
Ameer Abdullah. That is a name you should know going forward. Bo Pelini won’t hold his team back this week and the Huskers will pounce all over McNeese State.
#20 Kansas State 27, Iowa State 7.
Iowa State showed us that they aren’t ready quite yet for the big time after a loss to FCS North Dakota State. Kansas State needs to use this game as a tune-up for the match-up against Auburn on September 18th, and I expect Bill Snyder’s squad to run away with this one against the Cyclones.
#21 South Carolina 48, East Carolina 35.
The Pirates won’t be a cakewalk. They can put up some points, and after watching the Gamecocks against Texas A&M, a high-powered offense is definitely not what the doctor ordered. Dylan Thompson must have a good day and Mike Davis needs to get on track to help South Carolina stay away from an 0-2 start. I like Spurrier’s squad to win, but this one will be entertaining.
#21 North Carolina 37, San Diego State 20.
UNC struggled a bit last week against Liberty before pulling away in the second half. This Aztec team isn’t quite as good as past teams, so expect the Tar Heels to pull away in this one.
#23 Clemson 34, South Carolina State 6.
A much needed win for Clemson will give them a chance to look at two quarterbacks–Cole Stoudt and Deshaun Watson will most likely battle for the opportunity to start in two weeks against Florida State.
#24 Missouri 36, Toledo 21.
Missouri will get pushed here simply because Toledo has lots of talent and speed. However, I think Maty Mauk will open up the offense and lead Miz-zou to a big win against a quality team.
#25 Louisville 44, Murray State 3.
My dark horse for the year will continue to learn more about themselves against the FCS Racers. Will Gardner will continue to develop and the defense will show just how good they are for the second week in a row.
Texas 23, BYU 21.
In the wake of the newest suspensions out in Texas, many might be jumping on board with BYU here. I’m not abandoning ship quite yet; the Longhorns’ defense played amazing in Week 1 (albeit against North Texas), and I think they feel like that have something to prove after getting run all over by the Cougars last year. Losing David Ash is huge, but I think the offense will be able to muster just enough points to win.
What do you think? Let me know and give me your picks below.