After a hot start to the year I came back down to reality last week with a 3-4 performance. Although I’m not all that upset because I alluded to the fact that I thought Miami would hang with Florida, I just didn’t realize it would be because the Gators were completely inept on the offensive side of the ball.
That puts me at 9-5 for the season. Now lets get into the week three slate of games.
No. 1 Alabama at No. 6 Texas A&M- Saturday 3:30 p.m. ET on CBS
This is it.
The match-up we’ve been talking about since the 2012 season ended. Last year Johnny Manziel and the Aggies were the lone blemish on the Crimson Tide’s second straight championship with a 29-24 upset in Tuscaloosa. Now Alabama is looking to come away with a win of its own onn the road. Under Nick Saban, Alabama is 7-1 in ‘revenge’ games.
We don’t really know a whole lot about either team so far in 2013. Texas A&M’s offense has led the way in wins over Rice (52-31) and Sam Houston State (65-28), while Alabama defeated Virgina Tech 35-10 in the Chic-fil-A Kickoff Game. Christian Jones did emerge as a star with a 72-yard punt return, a 94-yard kickoff return and a 38-yard touchdown catch.
The Tide should be concerned about the offensive line’s performance as they gave up four sacks to the Hokies. The Aggies have given up at least 390 yards in each game this season, but they do get two starters back from suspension on Saturday.
Pregame Reading: Jimmy Burch writes for the Star-Telegram that Texas A&M is preparing for its most-anticipated home game in school history.
Prediction: Alabama is favored by eight points. I think that Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M don’t just cover, but they win outright. I’m taking the Aggies over Alabama 24-21.
No. 16 UCLA at No. 23 Nebraska- Noon ET on ABC
Last season Brett Hundley put on a show against Nebraska as he threw for 305 yards and four touchdowns in a 36-30 win. UCLA is 1-0 this year with a 58-20 win over Nevada. Hundley threw for two scores and ran for two as well in that game.
UCLA will come into the game with a heavy heart after the death of receiver Nick Pasquale during the BYE week.
Nebraska is 2-0 after escaping Wyoming 37-34, and taking down Southern Miss 56-13. The Cornhuskers have a solid running game behind junior Ameer Abdullah, freshman Tereell Newby and sophomore Imani Cross. Quarterback Taylor Martinez is a threat to run as well.
I’m not overly impressed by either defense and think that both running games won’t face much opposition on Saturday.
Pregame Reading: LA Times: UCLA football coaches and teammates mourn Nick Pasquale.
Prediction: The Cornhuskers are favored by four and a half points, but I like UCLA to win outright. Brett Hundley is the truth, and I think an emotionally charged Bruins team wins 31-21.
Tennessee at No. 2 Oregon – Saturday 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC
Both teams have gotten off to great starts offensively. Tennessee is averaging 48.5 points per game, while Oregon averages 62.5.
Oregon went on the road and dismantled Virginia 59-10 last weekend. So far this season De’Anthony Thomas has run for 252 yards and five touchdowns.
Tennessee is 2-0 under new head coach Butch Jones with a 45-0 win over Austin Peay and a 52-20 win over Western Kentucky. Quarterback Justin Worley has completed 68 percent of his passes so far this season with four touchdowns and one interception. Running back Rajion Neal is also off to a nice start with 215 yards and four touchdowns.
The Vols forced five turnovers against Bobby Petrino and WKU, but they haven’t seen an offense anywhere close to the Ducks.
Pregame Reading: The Oregonian writes that preparing for Oregon’s offense is easier said than done for Tennessee.
Prediction: Oregon is a 28-point favorite over the Volunteers, and I don’t think it’s enough. I like the Ducks to continue to cruise in a 42-10 win.
No. 24 TCU at Texas Tech- Thursday 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN: Maybe it’s just because I think Kliff Kingsbury is really dreamy but I think the Red Raiders will win this game. TCU is favored by three points, but I think that Texas Tech and its walk-on quarterback win 35-28.
Georgia Tech at Duke- Saturday 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU: With Duke starting quarterback Anthony Boone out with a broken collarbone the Yellow Jackets are favored by 10 points. I think that Vad Lee will put on a show in his homecoming and Tech wins 28-14.
UCF at Penn State- Saturday 6 p.m. ET on Big Ten Network: Penn State is a 5 1/2 point favorite over the Knights (don’t say Golden). I like UCF to cover here. Blake Bortles is a good quarterback and I think that they may have a shot to win outright. Penn State hangs on 20-17 over UCF.
Boston College at USC- Saturday 3 p.m. ET on Pac-12 Network: It was tough to decide if it would be Southern Cal or Texas who fully derailed this weekend. Ultimately I think the Eagles can beat USC on the road. The Trojans are 14-point favorites and I’m picking BC to win 21-14.