Thursday, September 11, 2014

Week Three Story Lines

Here are the big story lines for week three of the 2014 college football season...

Indiana at Bowling Green
Hoosiers need to prove to folks that they are climbing, not spinning their wheels. Bowling Green can score, but they need to show improvement on D against a high scoring IU offense. Both teams have much to prove in a season where, in Bowling Green's case, expectations haven't been met.

Ohio at Marshall
Marshall hasn't been exactly who they were supposed to be coming in, but Ohio hasn't been able to score against anyone. The Herd needs a signature statement this week, and here is their chance. Herd has to get by stingy Bobcat D.

East Carolina at Virginia Tech
Pirates gave South Carolina all they could handle in a loss last week. Hokies upset Ohio State on the road, but are they primed for a letdown week against a very good ECU squad at home?

Georgia Southern at Georgia Tech
The over/under on total passes thrown by both teams will be three. I take the under. I do guarantee a school with the name Georgia in it will win.

Syracuse at Central Michigan
Chippewas have been vastly improved, and the Orange has been largely a mess. CMU is coming off of a 21 point win over Purdue. Can SMU hit 3-0 in a make or break year for Dan Enos?

U Mass at Vanderbilt
Someone has to win, as ties have been outlawed.

West Virginia at Maryland
Who thought coming in that Maryland may be the better team this week? Can their defense stop Clint Trickett?

Louisville at Virginia
This won't be as easy as it seems for Cardinals. Virginia has been a tough out this season, and an upset could be brewing if Louisville comes in flat.

Arkansas at Texas Tech
Arkansas is not good, but Tech has been borderline horrible in narrow wins over abysmal UTEP and FCS member Central Arkansas. Arkansas is primed to take this game.

Iowa State at Iowa
ISU is coming off of a narrow loss to Kansas State that they should have won, and Iowa has been playing flat as a pancake this season. The Cyclones will be going for the steal here, and Paul Rhoades needs this win.

Georgia at South Carolina
South Carolina could lose this game and be out of both the SEC East race and the national title hunt before we see October. Who would have seen that coming in August?

Mississippi State at South Alabama
USA gets an SEC team to come to mobile for a visit. It won't be an easy win for the Bulldogs here. The Jags are pumped up and ready for this.

Minnesota at TCU
Better game on paper than it seems. Both teams are trying to press an identity, but the Gophers aren't a great road team. This will be a nice win for either side.

Illinois at Washington
Both are lucky to be 2-0. This game will show who is for real heading out of the weekend.

Northern Illinois at UNLV
The Huskies are high rolling into Vegas so far. UNLV has been back to being a joke early. If the Rebels cannot pull this win at home, they likely won't be going anywhere this season. It's all on the brink in the desert.

Kentucky at Florida
Wildcats could pull an upset in the swamp. Not saying they will, just saying they could. If they did, UK would be competing with Georgia for the SEC East. Stranger things have happened.

Penn State at Rutgers
Meeting for the first time in Big Ten play. Scarlet Knights have been playing above their means, while the Nittany Lions have something serious to play for after being made bowl eligible and conference title eligible. Penn State should bring Rutgers back to Earth this week.

New Mexico State at UTEP
Aggies and Miners are not usually something on a national schedule, and still aren't, but both are playing much better in 2014. It may not last, but this could be a fun game to watch.

USC at Boston College
USC didn't exactly light the world on fire in a win over Stanford last week. Boston College could sneak up and upset an emotional Trojan team, but only if they stop the run, which they didn't do against Pitt last week.

SE Louisiana at Tulane
Bayou special should be interesting. FCS Lions are a power, and Tulane is descending. If SELU won, would it be much of an upset at all? Not really. I'm picking a Lion win over the Green Wave.

Tennessee at Oklahoma
This would have been a much better game ten years ago, but hey, it's a big name power five matchup. That's what we all want, right?

Portland State at Washington State
If the Cougars, who have been awful, fall to the FCS Vikings, the cows in Pullman will riot. I guarantee it. A loss here, and WSU is 0-3. This is a team that I saw winning 8 games. Not anymore.

UCLA vs. Texas at Arlington
The Bruins have been all over the place, with none of those places being good. Texas has been just about the same, but got hammered by BYU last week at home. The Bruins should win, but must remember who they are, and not play down to Texas, like they did against both Virginia and Memphis.

Nebraska at Fresno State
This is only something to watch because Nebraska actually agreed to go to Fresno. Holy Moses! They also agreed to play a night game in Fresno. It's been a strange season, but this is just nuts!

Northern Iowa at Hawaii
UNI can move the Rainbows one step closer to dumping Norm Chow. Hey Rainbow fans...June Jones is available!

Colorado State-Pueblo at Sam Houston State
If you haven't heard of CSU-Pueblo, check this matchup out between one of the best from D2 and one of the best from FCS. SHSU is vulnerable to upset, and Pueblo is on full power mode heading in. This is a huge small school tilt this week.

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