Week one is in the books more or less (a couple of games today Sunday and one major game Monday night) and, for the most part, it was pretty predictable. The Aggies came out looking pretty sharp and South Carolina looked horrible while UCLA certainly did not look like a top 20 squad with their struggle with a Virginia team. I guess we should add that Peterson's Huskies struggled mightily with the Hawaii squad. All in all though things went about like any first week of any season. The Bartendercabbie record was 7-3 last week.........That being said, on to the predictions for week 2 of the 2014 season.
1. McNeese St vs Nebraska: Are the Huskers really in need of this much extra practice? Really almost everybody seems to schedule non conference "cupcakes" at least once a season but two in a row? I suppose Bo is just trying to pad his stats before the real season begins. The Cowboys may contend in the Southland Conference but this will be a mismatch. Unfair really although wouldn't it be grand.....?
2. UAB vs Mississippi State: The Blazers came out blazing in their victory over in state rival Troy. The looked better than they have in past seasons thus far to be sure. The Bulldogs are a mystery again. They won't compete for top spot in the SEC and no mistake, but there is a distinct possibility that they will be a pretty good ball club when all is said and done. Go with the team from Northern Mississippi here.
3. Ole Miss vs Vanderbilt: It looks like the Commodores will be back to business as usual. Franklin took his act to PSU and the team just doesn't look good. One doesn't lose to Temple anytime and consider themselves a good team. One certainly does not get blown out by those particular Owls....The Rebs looked impressive against what may be the class of the Mountain West in Boise State and likely will have little trouble in this SEC match up. Go with Ole Miss.
4. Sam Houston State vs LSU: The Tigers may need a breather after a hard fought victory over what looks to be a pretty good Badger team. SHSU will be a contender in the Southland race and perhaps even a factor in the race to the top of the FCS (their loss to EWU not withstanding). That being said, the team from Texas will be over matched here although they will have a few surprises for the Tiger squad. It won't be near enough. Go with the Tigers.
5. USC vs Stanford: A major PAC12 contest early and it could be a good one. USC is Laneless and that certainly has helped matters. Stanford may be the team to beat in the PAC12 race and has an outside shot of taking it all on the national level. This will be a good one and a betting man should pick Stanford for the win. Not sure if they will beat the spread........
6. Michigan vs Notre Dame: Hoke needs this one in the worst way. Other than Ohio State and MSU, this will be what the Wolverine faithful look to as a must win. The Irish looked OK in their outing with a plucky but over matched Rice squad and I'm not real sure if Michigan is much a step above the Owls or not. Time will tell. Go with Notre Dame.
7. Michigan St. vs Oregon: This, along with the USC/Stanford match up, is the big game of the week. MSU was certainly a top 5 team when all was said and done last season and Oregon (or Stanford) is the favorite to win the PAC12. Which team is better right now? Hard to say. I will flip a coin and go with the quickness of Oregon to prevail.
8. Texas Tech vs UTEP: The Raiders struggled with the UCA Bears in their opener. UTEP is not as good a team as the bunch from little ole Conway, AR. though. UCA will be the favorite in the Southland and has an outside shot of playing for all the marbles in the FCS. Point is, don't under rate these top level FCS squads or do so at your peril. More than one "big time" team has learned this hard lesson and it is becoming more common. What? Oh, the Red Raider/Miner match up. Go with TTU.
9. Towson vs WVU: The Mountaineers hung tough against the vaunted Tide but this game with the Tigers will not be a cake walk most likely. Again a top level FCS squad can be dangerous and Towson is likely to qualify in that regard this season. I would go with WVU here but it may be close.
10. EWU vs Washington: I'm just not so sure that Washington will win this one. They struggled with the Warriors from the islands and did not look good. Has Hawaii improved that much? Perhaps but I kind of doubt it. EWU is another one of those teams that is talked about when the eventual FCS champion is discussed. Well, sort of anyway. NDSU will win that division but there are a number that will make a play to eventually lose to the Bison in the "big game at the end" (remember the XFL?). Peterson's squad better step it up if they have any hope of competing with the top of the PAC12 and this particular game will be no cake walk. I am tempted to put this down as an "upset" of sorts but will go with conventional wisdom and pick the big team from Washington for the win.
Have a good week and enjoy the games.