Clemson-Louisville, Tennessee-Florida, USC-Texas Who Will Win & Why
By The Pigskin Prognosticator, PubClub.com College Football Blogger
Two weeks are in the rear-view mirror and here’s what the Prognosticator has learned about college football 2017.
• Ohio State’s offense is as bad as it showed itself to be in the Clemson game last year. But the OSU will still win a bunch of close games because other teams will fold and the Buckeyes will be in the playoff picture at or near the end of the season.
• Oklahoma’s quarterback needs to realize he plays at Oklahoma, not Akron. Winning programs don’t spike the flag on other team’s logos.
• Auburn’s Gus Malzahn is NOT an offensive genius. His system relies on freak quarterbacks, yet for some reason the college football media seems oblivious to this fact. The same applies to Kevin Sumlin. He’s lost without Johnny Manziel.
• In keeping with its great tradition, USC will lose one unexpected game at some point in the season. But it will still play Washington for the Pac-12 Championship.
• Taking time to review (seemingly) every first down, ball spot, touchdown and so forth is killing the momentum of the games. At the same time, rules are being introduced and proposed to speed up the games. The Prognosticator just does not understand it. They are “targeting” the wrong targets.
Ahh, that last part felt good. Now onto this week’s games. All times PDT because the Prognosticator lives on the West Coast.
UCLA at MEMPHIS (9 a.m., ABC)
The Trampolines always get up for the big out-of-conference road games. Unfortunately for them, Memphis is the biggest out-of-conference road game they have this year. Still, they don’t figure to be traveling to Heartbreak Hotel – the Peabody with the ducks, is more like it – unless they go to Graceland.
The Prognosticator has some serious Suspicious Minds about the Baby Bears but they will be like a Hound Dog hound dogging in Elvis’ backyard. Winner: UCLA
TENNESSEE AT FLORIDA (12:30 p.m., CBS)
The Gators are emerging from the swamp – not Hurricane Irma but Michigan’s defense – in their first game since looking so awful in Arlington. The offense is certainly living up to the school’s mascot because it’s prehistoric. Steve Superior will be at the game but the Gators might want to put him on the sideline and give him a headset.
Into this scenario march the Volunteers, feeling like a conquering militia (after all, they beat Georgia Tech!). What will befall them is their record against Florida and the fact that when the game is tight, the “Coach of Life” will play too conservatively and blow it. Winner: Florida
CLEMSON AT LOUISVILLE (5 p.m., ABC)
Louisville Slugger Lamar Jackson steps to the plate to take a big swing at knocking one out of the park and knocking the visiting felines back to the clubhouse. The trouble for Jackson is that while he’s an MVP, his team is a bunch of minor leaguers and that’s easy prey for the Tigers.
Offensively, the fact Auburn was so bad overshadowed for some how bumbling the Tigers were for much of the day. They kept tripping over their own tails.
So it’s up to the stop troops to keep Jackson from hitting (and running and throwing) for the cycle. Winner, in a close one, Clemson
TEXAS at USC (5:30 p.m., Fox)
The last time Troy saw someone in a white uniform with orange trim and a set of horns on the helmet, Vince Young was running by them on the way to an historic touchdown. And while there may be some similar blurs on Saturday, these are not the same Longhorns of that memorable (or miserable, by Trojans fans’ accounts) night in California. Texas will have some Texas-sized big plays and put up some points, but the Travelers will be galloping all over the burnt orange – and burned – Texas defenders. Winner: USC
Sunday’s Biggest Surprise College Football Headline?
Oh Mercy, Mercer Upsets Auburn