We are on to week three of the college football season. This week is devoid of very many high profile games. That does not mean there won’t be good games to watch this week. I will have to apologize, but as a University of Louisville alum, I am mandated to make the Louisville/Kentucky game a top 5 game of the week. It is the Top one game of the season for me every season, but I think this year is looking bleak for me. Anyway, now to the picks.
TOP 5 COLLEGE GAMES OF THE WEEK
5. Louisville at Kentucky 12:00 ESPNU
Kentucky has won two in a row in this series and looks to extend the run this year. Louisville has a new starting QB, but does have a tremendous running game. The key to the game will be how much pressure each team can get on the opposing QB. UK looked good in their opener, while the Cards look unsure of themselves. That will be tough to overcome at Commonwealth Stadium.
PICK: Kentucky 27-17
4. Tennessee at Florida 3:30 CBS
This game only makes the Top 5 because of the hype. Lane Kiffin’s antics have made this a must see event. But it is an event who’s competitive portion may be over early. Kiffin’s recruiting will make the Volunteers a force in the SEC again, but right now they cannot compete with the number one team in the nation.
PICK: Florida 44-20
3. Cincinnati at Oregon St. 6:45
This game is a little under the radar, but involves two very good teams. Cincinnati is the defending Big East champs and Oregon St seems to beat USC alot. Cincy has an emerging star in QB Tony Pike and the Beavers of course have RB Jacquizz Rodgers. I think the key to this game will be Oregon State’s home field advantage coupled with Cincy not being used to cross country travel. It should still be tightly contested though.
PICK: Oregon State 34-28
2. West Virginia at Auburn 7:45 ESPN2
West Virginia is trying to carry the mantle of the Big East conference as the one team with a true nati0nal presence. A road win over an SEC foe would do wonders for the conferences reputation. QB Jarrett Brown has stepped in admirably for departed superstar Pat White. They really need him to have a big game. New Auburn coach Gene Chizik is proving the doubters wrong with good play from the Tigers so far, but a loss here would bring them right back. Ben Tate running the ball effectively will be the key to victory.
PICK: Auburn 27-21
1. Nebraska at Virginia Tech 3:30 ABC
This is the game Husker nation wants to use to put their program back on the national stage. It is tough to go down to Blacksburg and get a win. This isn’t a vintage Va Tech team, I don’t believe, but they will not go down easily. This Nebraska squad is getting better, but I don’t think they are at the point where they can expect to win these games. They will push the Hokies, but fall short.
PICK: Virginia Tech 31-17
Middle Tennessee at Maryland 3:30
Maryland has got to tighten up its defense. This is a game they should win, but after last week you have to worry. MTSU destroyed Memphis, who was a bowl team last year, last week. It is about revenge for Maryland and they better take it seriously.
PICK: Maryland 24-21
Navy at Pittsburgh 6:00
Navy is a gritty squad that can pull off alot of things, but this may be too much. Pitt is a much better team than the one Navy has beaten in the past. QB Ricky Dobbs will be his usual brilliant self, but the Navy defense will be in trouble against Pitt RB Dion Lewis.
PICK: Pittsburgh 41-24
Coastal Carolina at Towson 7:00
The Chanticleers are a good team, but this is one of the winnable games on a tough Towson schedule. If they can run the football and establish themselves early they should be able to build some confidence.
PICK: Towson 17-10
Winston Salem St. at Morgan St. 2:00
Like with Towson, this is a game the Bears need to win. Once they get into MEAC play it will be dicey, but they should have the physical advantages over this transitional team. I expect big things from Morgan in their home opener.
PICK: Morgan St. 34-14