There are some pretty good games on tap for week three but perhaps none that will gain the attention of Ohio State/Miami; Alabama/PSU or even Notre Dame/Michigan. Last week I did quite well in predicting the outcome of the games but in the second week there are plenty of tune up games as various power teams get ready for conference play. On to the predictions. This week I will add a true Division IAA game just to mix things up a bit.
1. Kansas vs Southern Miss: This is a pretty interesting match up. Which Kansas team will show up? Will it be the one that lost to North Dakota State in week one, or the one that beat a ranked Georgia Tech squad last week? That is a very good question. USM is a team that no one should really count out, they had a decent game against South Carolina in week one and further refined their game last week vs Prairie View. Conference USA does not fare very well against BCS teams but Southern Miss may be ready here. Still I will pick the Jayhawks in a close game. Go with Kansas.
2. California vs Nevada: Cal smashed an outmanned Colorado team last week. The Buffs beat Colorado State in week one and Nevada absolutely crushed the Rams in week two. So which team matches up better against the Golden Bears? Probably Nevada. I would look for a close game but think that Cal has the depth to take down the Wolfpack. Pick Cal.
3. UCONN vs. Temple: The Owls are a pretty darn football team and the Huskies may not be too bad themselves. Connecticut is probably the better team but I think that Al Golden will have his guys ready for a minor upset. Go with Temple for the win.
4. Iowa State vs Kansas State: This game may be fairly interesting. So far Kansas State is 2-0 with the win against UCLA possibly being a quality win. Iowa State was manhandled last week by Big X rival Iowa. This conference game will probably bounce the Wildcats' way. Go with KSU.
5. Maryland vs West Virginia: Two teams with a lot to prove square off in this match up. Maryland is 2-0 after having defeated Navy and Morgan State. WVU was embarrassed and nearly beaten by a rebuilding Marshall squad. I think that WVU will have the power to come out on top here. Go with West Virginia.
6. Ohio vs Ohio State: This should be a no brainer. Ohio may be in the hunt for the MAC East, (although they did not help their cause last week), but Ohio State is in the hunt for the mythical National Championship." Go with the Buckeyes here.
7. Arkansas vs Georgia: This may be a good match up. Georgia came up short last week against South Carolina and Arkansas let a lower level Sun Belt team hang around until near the fourth quarter. Arkansas probably is a bit ahead in overall talent but Georgia is out to prove themselves. I will pick the Hogs in a very very close game.
8. Vanderbilt vs Ole Miss: These two teams may be pretty evenly matched. The Rebs should be favored but it may be a close one. I look for the team from Oxford to pull this one out. Go with Ole Miss.
9. Middle Tn State vs Memphis: Memphis does not look like they will be a factor this year and may well get swept for the season. The Blue Raiders may well be in contention for the top spot in the Sun Belt. I would go with Middle Tennessee here.
10. Baylor vs TCU: TCU is the better team but I would not discount the Bears. If Robert G. can stay healthy he may be a better QB than Dalton. Hard to say. Both teams are well coached but I will go with TCU to win in a dogfight.
11. Troy vs UAB: Troy showed us something the other day against a good Oklahoma State team. They could have won that game. UAB fared better than expected against an up and coming SMU squad. I will pick Troy to win this game. It may be close.
12. Mississippi State vs. LSU: These teams are probably pretty evenly matched. Both are pretty good teams that have no chance of competing for the SEC Championship. Mississippi State had their chances against Auburn last week and LSU took down the Commodores. This game will probably be pretty close but I will go with LSU for the win.
13. ULM vs Arkansas State: This has become a rivalry game that no one really cares about except players and relations. A lot of kids that go to these schools don't even particularly pay attention. Arkansas State was handled rather easily by the Cajuns last week and ULM played surprisingly well for three quarters against the Hogs. This will probably be pretty close also but I will go with ULM here.
14. Texas vs Texas Tech: Good game with a lot of history. Texas Tech can not be taken lightly by anyone and that includes the Longhorns. The Horns don't look as good this year as in recent past and the Red Raiders are still a bit of a mystery. Potts is a good QB to be sure, but I am not sure this Red Raider team is ready to compete for top spot in the South. I will go with the Horns to pull this one out of a hat.
15. UNLV vs Idaho: The Vandals need this win to keep the players confidence up and show the country that last year was not an anomaly. UNLV is still looking for that first win but actually played fairly well against some tough opponents. Enderle will have to keep his interceptions down to a minimum but the Rebs defense is for certain not the Huskers D. It may be an interesting and close game but I pick the Vandals to win.
16. Notre Dame vs Michigan State: Michigan State survived a scare with a Sun Belt team last week and did not look very impressive at all. Notre Dame came out on the losing end vs an apparently improved Michigan squad. I pick Notre Dame to take the Spartans in a close game.
17. Fresno State vs Utah State: Utah State may be a better team than expected. They turned in a commendable performance the other week vs Oklahoma and should have further worked out the kinks last week. Fresno State is still a bit of a mystery but a team coached by Pat Hill is dangerous to anybody. I will go with the Bulldogs for the win here.
18. UCLA vs Houston: The Bruins do not look like a very good team and Houston can score on anyone. The Cougars defense is still a bit suspect in my mind but UCLA may not have the offense to keep up with the prolific scoring that will likely occur. I will go with the Cougars here.
19. Arizona vs Iowa: We will see if the Wildcats are for real here. Iowa is a very good team but probably not really a top ten squad. Or maybe they are. The Wildcats will have their hands full and will come out on the wrong end of the scoreboard here. Pick Iowa.
20. Tennessee Chattanooga vs Eastern Kentucky: Here is the IAA game I promised. The reason I picked this game is because it looks like a very interesting match up. Eastern KY held their own against Louisville last week after being handled easily by Missouri State in week one. The Mocs are 0-2 but those losses were very close affairs with Jacksonville State and Appalachian State. Those teams may be in the elite of IAA and it is proven that they can hold their own against quality D1 opponents. I will go with the Mocs here but it may be a close game.
Potential Shocker of the Week
San Diego State vs Missouri: The Aztecs are 2-0 at this point. Granted Nichols State is not much of an opponent and New Mexico State is not a football powerhouse either, but still, 2-0 for SDSU is pretty good. Missouri may not be ready to compete for the Big Twelve North. They are light years away from Nebraska but conventional wisdom would say that the Bears would win hands down. Perhaps they will but I think they may be surprised a bit. Pick Missouri in a dogfight.