The opening week of the 2012 season had a couple of interesting games; Alabama/Michigan of course, Auburn/Clemson, Va Tech/Ga Tech. BSU/MSU and perhaps the Ohio/PSU games come to mind. For the most part it was a typical opening week where the high and mighty try to run roughshod over the smaller programs. This week may be even worse in that regard.
So far I am running at 80 percent. Who knew that the University of Houston would have fallen so far so quickly? Not the experts. They were 3 or 4 TD favs over D1 newbies Texas State. The Coog offensive coordinator resigned. We can assume it was over this embarrassment.
1. LA. Tech vs U of H: The Coogs were embarrassed and it will probably be a very long year for the Cougar faithful. It is hard enough to sell out tiny Robertson Stadium in a good year. No one comes to the games when things are not going so well. Funny, in a football crazy state like Texas, (some of the) non marquee programs have trouble keeping asses in the seats. Oh well, as for the game. I would be very surprised if Houston can handle the Bulldogs. Likely La. Tech would have beaten TAMU last week and have had to delay their opener until the 2nd week due to the storm. LA. Tech is a good WAC team (only), but, judging from the Cougar performance last week, I would go with the Bulldogs.
2. Pittsburgh vs Cinc: The Panthers are in disarray also. I don't know what they have in Cincinnati this season, but we are pretty certain what is going on in Pittsburgh. If anything they were humiliated worse than Houston. I sort of blame Todd Graham for the problem. That man is capable of destroying any program then splitting for greener pastures. Sure I know he can win but he is destructive none the less. Folks are fools for hiring him. Reminds me of a "who knew Todd Graham was a douchebag" t shirt that I saw at a Rice game a while back. The game? Go with Cincinnati.
3. Utah vs Utah St: This one may be good. A couple of years ago it would have been a no brainer. Utah State may be the team that could challenge La. Tech for the WAC crown and Utah has sort of fizzled it seems. I doubt they will pose a serious challenge in the PAC 12 this season. At one time I figured they would dominate that below par west coast league. No more. This game will be a toss up and I will go with Utah State in what many would consider an upset of sorts.
4. Miami (Fl) vs KSU: Miami has been down for many years and is no longer talked about when the discussion of national championships is raised. KSU can be a darn good, but boring, football team under Bill (only). This one will be pretty good. KSU has a bruising QB and will (perhaps) make a run in the Big XXII. There is talk that Miami is on the way back. Another toss up and I will go with KSU here. Hard to believe that this might be the marquee game of the week
5. Auburn vs Mississippi State: Can Auburn rebound from a dissappointing loss to Clemson? Probably so. The Bulldogs may have a decent season but in no way are they in any position to challenge the elite of the SEC. Probably on the same level as TAMU or Vanderbilt (better than Ole Miss or Kentucky though). Auburn is in the second tier and still will probably be in a major bowl before all is said and done. War Eagle will be mad. It could get ugly. I would go with Auburn here.
6. Florida vs TAMU: Perhaps this is the "game of the week." TAMU has a new coach and there is a lot of optimism. We will finally see if Sumlin is the real deal. Judging from week one, Florida does not look up for the challenge of making a serious run in the SEC. It might be a close one but I have full confidence in the Aggies to find a way to blow it. They usually do. It is part of the culture. Go with the Gators.
7. WKU vs Alabama: Here we go. WKU comes to town to get paid. The Hilltoppers may well have a shot in the SBC but will not have a prayer here. Wouldn't it be fun though?...........It has happened before. I fondly remember NLU (ULM) humiliating the Tide a few seasons back. Could it happen again? Sadly no.
8. La Lafayette vs Troy: An important SBC match up in week two is on the table. ULL destroyed a IAA Southland school last week while Troy edged UAB. This one has implications in the race to the top to this overlooked conference. The game is a toss up and I will go with the Cajuns by less than a touchdown.
9. UTSA vs TAMU (Commerce): No the roadrunners are not playing the Aggies here but instead are meeting with a TAMU affiliated D2 school. Remember UTSA is just getting their program started but have a good one in coach Coker. He may (or may not) have some character issues but I like the guy anyway. It is a rarity to see even a marginal D1 program play a D2 school but there you have it. I would go with the new(ish) squad from San Antonio here.
10. Washington vs LSU: Do I think that LSU has what it takes to win the SEC? Not sure. I have my doubts. We might learn a little more about what the Tigers really have (or don't have) in this game. Washington is not Oregon or USC but a major program from a major conference should be a bit more of challenge than North Texas. Remember though; the Mean Green did expose the Tigers to some extent. It could be interesting but I think the Tigers will have the depth to take this one. It may be closer than some folk think though.
Have a good week and enjoy the games.