Alabama-South Carolina & Clemson-Syracuse Highlight A Weak Lineup, Tho Oklahoma To Put The Hurts On Hurting UCLA
If you need a Saturday to get out and mow the lawn, to finally agree to go shopping with your wife for those new drapes or, in the case of Tennessee and UCLA, to catch your breath and try and figure out just what’s going on, then this is the day to do it this fall.
You know you’ve got a slow weekend when one of the most intriguing matchups is Florida at Kentucky and College Game Day is in Ames, Iowa, instead of Columbus or Tuscaloosa.
Onto this week’s games. All times are Pacific because The Prognosticator lives on the West Coast.
Pitt at Penn State (9 a.m., ABC)
The Panthers crawl over the Allegheny Mountains in search of some happiness in Happy Valley, but they will quickly lean that this is no fall picnic. The Mountain Lions are waiting to ambush the intruders and will pounce early on their fellow felines from the Keystone State. Winner: Penn State
Alabama at South Carolina (12:30 p.m., CBS)
The last time the Pachyderms stomped into Columbia, they acted as if they had seen a mouse. A red-hot South Carolina team played the game of its program history and scored an upset. There is reason for the red Tiders to be on alert this time, for Carolina backup quarterback Ryan Hilinski is a wild card that could go wild against a still-developing Bama D. But don’t get cocky, Gamecocks; just remember you lost to North Carolina. Plus, the Tua Tidal Wave is ready to strike at any time and when it gets rolling the only thing that can stop it is the expiration of the game clock. Winner: Alabama
USC at BYU (12:30 p.m., ABC)
The Trojans’ athletic department took a Swann dive this week with AD Lynn suddenly “resigning” just as the men of Troy started acting like men in a rout of Stanford. Sometimes it’s good to get away and they pop into Provo at just the right time. The Utah Felines know their miraculous win the previous week against Tennessee was a fluke, not likely to be repeated this or almost any other year. Hot Seat Helton has stumbled into a hot quarterback and even if the hosts manage to slow down Slovis, these modern-day Cougars are not the BYU slingers of the past. Winner: USC
Iowa at Iowa State (1 p.m., FS1)
In Ames, the Cyclones take aim at their in-state rival while trying to brew up a storm in the college football world. They have the national stage to do it, but do they have the same power that has made them an upset specialist in recent years? Meanwhile, the visiting Hawks have their eyes on the destruction of their hosts while also sending a warning to those in its conference. Winner: Iowa
Florida at Kentucky (4 p.m., ESPN)
Last year it was the Felines who were doing the “chomp chomping,” and now they are in their furry confines to see if they can repeat their feat. They are, however, without their starting quarterback and stud running back Benny Snell, who is now taking snaps on Sundays instead of Saturdays. The Gators, tho, are not those wild creatures that have been so beastly in the past. Felipe Franks is as unsteady as an over-indulging tailgater and the Mullen magic has yet to materialize. The Swamp Creatures may look out of place in the Commonwealth but they still have enough bite in them to take down the Cats. Winner: Florida
Clemson at Syracuse (4:30 p.m., ABC)
The sudden appearance of Clemson haters has had them pointing to this game all off-season as one that would derail the Cats and keep them out of the College Football Playoffs. But the Orangemen have lost their juice and now only a sudden emergence of the Saltine Warriors tribe can revive their chances against the visiting Felines. They may put up a fight early, but it won’t be long before they crumble like Saltine Crackers. Winner: Clemson
Oklahoma at UCLA (5 p.m., FOX)
Give the Baby Bears credit: they play a schedule. Nick Saban says Alabama has trouble finding quality opponents for non-conference games but UCLA probably has more teams lining up to play it than there will be fans in the Rose Bowl for this sudden mismatch. Traditionally, this would be a game in which the Trampolines pop back up after being down but they have no bounce in them under Chip Kelly. The Boomers are really going to put the Hurts to the hosts, sending the dwindling number of Bruins fans into further hibernation. Winner: Oklahoma
Texas Tech at Arizona (7:30 p.m, ESPN)
The grass is cut, the new drapes are in place and now you’re ready to sit back with a beer and watch some entertaining football on TV with lots of scoring. This is your late-night game, where the field becomes a wide-open freeway and the defenders act like on-ramps. There is no speed limit here and the Raiders will race through the desert while the stumbling Sumlin crashes again. Winner: Texas Tech