Thank God It’s Saturday – Texas and Missouri
Texas and Mizzou headline a great weekend of college football as Chase Daniel and Jeremy Maclin head down to Austin in an attempt to knock the high-riding Longhorns down a peg or two. While Texas is coming off that huge win against Oklahoma, the Tigers are trying to recover from their surprising defeat at the hands of Oklahoma State. Mental states aside, this game has the making of a PS3-style shoot-out with both teams featuring explosive, explosive offenses.
One of the biggest knocks against Missouri is their defense doesn’t match their prolific offense and while many are expecting the Longhorns to be caught by an inevitable letdown, the pedestrian Tigers defense is going to have a hard time stopping Colt McCoy and his weapons. Conversely, Sam Bradford’s big day against the Longhorn secondary (five touchdown passes) bodes well for Daniel and Maclin.
The over/under for this game is almost 70 points, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it got close to triple digits. There’s going to be a lot of offense on the field in Austin, so I would expect an incredibly exciting game.
Too much Texas for Missouri to stop. Texas 45, Missouri 41
Vandy at Georgia
Vanderbilt has played UGA quite well these last few seasons, even getting a win over them at Georgia during the 2006-07 season. What does this season have in store? On paper, this looks like another mismatch, with UGA holding a decisive statistical advantage, but of course, they don’t play these games on paper. The question I have is will the Commodores be able to score the football against the Bulldogs? They aren’t anywhere near as prolific an offense as their opponent and here lately, Vandy has been struggling to stop the run; however, they’ve only given up three rushing touchdowns.
I’m not sure a bend-but-don’t-break strategy is going to be effective against the talented Bulldogs, a team that wants to stay in the thick of the BCS Championship hunt. I’m looking for Stafford, Moreno Massaquoi, and A.J. Green to have big games. The big news for Vanderbilt is Mackenzi Adams will be starting at quarterback instead of Chris Nickson. Adams had success against UGA last season, much more than Nickson, anyway; but you have to think the Bulldogs will try and confuse the inexperienced starter with blitzes and different formations.
UGA rolls, 31-14.
Ohio State at Michigan State
The Spartans are 3-0 in the Big 10, they haven’t lost since their opener against Cal and they feature one of the best running backs in college football in Javon Ringer. What’s not to like about their match-up against the Buckeyes, a team that hasn’t had the easiest time on offense these past few weeks? While Ohio State if favored (3.5), it’s hard to ignore the opportunity the Spartans have. They’ve been playing better offense than OSU lately and they are confident bunch heading into Saturday’s game.
It should be noted the Spartans haven’t beaten the Buckeyes in nine years, something I’m sure Coach Dantonio is reminding his team of on a daily basis — or at least he should be.
Michigan State 28, Ohio State 20. I wouldn’t be surprised if the goalposts came down after this game.
Kansas at Oklahoma
The Sooners are a 20-point favorite here and it could get even uglier if Kansas doesn’t come to play. Oklahoma is no doubt smarting after losing to Texas and they are looking to take it out on the Jayhawks, who are experiencing a four-game losing streak against the Sooners. Look for that total to become five-straight.
Too much OU. 45-17, Sooners.
Mississippi at Alabama
Can the Rebels provide another road win upset for the SEC faithful? If Bama struggles to stop the pass, it could be another surprising outcome for Ole Miss. Coming off their bye-week, I would expect Alabama to be sharp and focused on the Rebels and I look for Bama’s offensive line to dictate how the game is going to go. From the looks of it, there’s just too much Glen Coffee and Mark Ingram for the Rebels to handle — but then again, who actually thought they’d beat Florida in September?
Bama’s Tide rolls. 35-14.
Other Games of Note
Michigan at Penn State – Nittany Lions stay undefeated against the listless Wolverines.
Arkansas at Kentucky – Homer game for me. After the ninth-straight debacle against South Carolina, the Cats really need a win against Bobby Petrino, which will be their first.
USC at Washington State – If USC struggles with Wazzu, it’ll be hard to keep them in the top-half of the top ten.
North Carolina at Virginia – You have to win these if you want to be considered officially back, Tar Heels — although, is “back” the right word? I guess you have to arrive before you can come back and if the Heels want to arrive, they have to beat teams like UVA.