Weekly College Football Recap and Review


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Weekly College Football Recap and Preview
By: Tycen Gray
09/11/2018
Week 2 Recap
After an exhilarating Week 1 of college football, there seemed to be no shortage of excitement in the following Week 2 matchups.
The majority of Top 25 teams had non-ranked opponents locked and loaded on their schedules over the weekend, including #2 Clemson. However, the Tigers had prior knowledge that they were throwing themselves into a primetime battle as they visited College Station, Texas, on Saturday, to take on the Texas A&M Aggies, who had just signed their new head coach Jimbo Fisher to a 10-year $75 million dollar contract soon after last season ended. The Aggies fought last year’s national semifinalist well, with sophomore Kellen Mond throwing for 430 yards and 3 touchdowns on just 23 completions. However, a stifling Clemson rush defense and timely plays made by senior quarterback Kelly Bryant squeaked out a 28-26 for the Tigers as they escape Kyle Field, and head back home to Death Valley for Week 3.
The first ranked matchup of the day pitted #3 Georgia against the home town #24 South Carolina in Columbia. A versatile rushing attack and an amped and aggressive defensive effort from the Georgia Bulldogs blew the gates on this one right after halftime. The Dawgs held a 20-10 advantage at the intermission, but pounded the Gamecocks in the third quarter to bolster their lead to 41-10 as they went into the last frame. Georgia amassed 271 rushing yards as a unit, with true sophomore Jake From efficiently throwing 15/18 for 194 yards and touchdown, with that score and 103 of those yards being received by junior Mecole Hardman.
The prime time game of the day took place in the Bay Area as the experienced #10 Stanford welcomed the young and star-studded #17 USC to The Farm. Stanford boasts last year’s Heisman runner-up in senior running back Bryce Love, while also returning the seasoned connection of junior quarterback KJ Costello and senior receiver JJ Arcega-Whiteside. Southern California utilized their recruiting pipeline to land and start true freshman quarterback JT Daniels and also true freshman receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown. In the end, the Stanford Cardinal’s veteran presence was enough to hold the Trojan prodigies to a whopping field goal as Bryce Love produced 136 yards and a touchdown on the ground, as the Cardinal propel themselves higher in a 17-3 win.
#15 Michigan State got themselves a little taste of what #PAC12AfterDark is bringing to the table this year, as the Herm Edwards era at Arizona State gets of to a phenomenal start. Since taking the helm with the Sun Devils, Edwards has since abandoned the previous air-raid attack and substituted it for a more pro-style offense, in likeness to Michigan State. However, the game entailed a handful of huge plays through the air, but also a handful of huge defensive plays. The teams could only muster 107 combined rushing yards but Sun Devil senior gunslinger Manny Wilkins tossed 380 yards while Spartan field general Brian Lewerke totaled 314 yards from the pocket. Arizona State found themselves in a 13-3 hole going into the fourth quarter, but solid defense and methodical offensive play calling set up Brandon Ruiz to break a 13-13 tie with his field goal as time expired to upset the Spartans.
The last time the Kentucky Wildcats defeated the Florida Gators in a collegiate football game, the date was November 15… 1986. A tall order faced Big Blue Nation as they walked into Gainesville, Florida to compete with the #25 team in the natio, the Florida Gators, in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. The Cats controlled the game on the ground, as running back Benny Snell Jr. scampered for 175 yards and quarterback Terry Wilson added 105 to pace Kentucky to a team total of 303 rushing yards. Add in a faint offensive presence from Florida, and Kentucky was able to get over the mountain and end their 31-year losing streak with the Gators in a 27-16 victory.
 
Week 3 Preview and Predictions
 
Thursday Night Game: Boston College @ Wake Forest (6:30 PM CT; ESPN)
Wake Forest is slowly overcoming a slow start to their season, as they sweated out an OT win over Tulane and then defeated FCS opponent Towson to reach 2-0. However, Boston College has recorded a more impressive 2-0 mark, as they still have one of the best kept secrets at running back, as true sophomore AJ Dillon has powered his way to 247 rushing yards to start the season. BC will turn this into a physical football game, which favors their style of play.
Prediction: Boston College 24, Wake Forest 13
 
Friday Night Game: Georgia State @ Memphis (6:00 PM CT; ESPN)
If you aren’t already watching high school football on Friday night, flip on ESPN for a little college ball. Both squads are 1-1 and both squads are coming off Week 2 losses. The difference is, Georgia State was pummeled 41-7 by a solid North Carolina State team while Memphis was edged out by a solid Navy team. Memphis has the versatility to be dangerous in any Group of 5 game, as they have potent threats at quarterback and running back, as well as being able to spread the ball around to multiple receivers. The Tigers will be too much for the Georgia State Panthers with their balanced attack.
Prediction: Memphis 38, Georgia State 20
 
Early Saturday Spotlight: #5 Oklahoma @ Iowa State (11:00 AM CT; ABC)
An unranked Iowa State team walked into Norman, Oklahoma, last year and upset a #3 ranked Oklahoma team 38-31 in an exhilarating upset that solidified Matt Campbell’s validity as the Cyclones’ long term head coach. This year, the battle takes place in Ames, but the Sooners will be seeking vengeance. Although Rodney Anderson is done for the season, the golden arm of Kyler Murray, the serviceable running abilities of Trey Sermon, and the tendencies of Marquise Brown and CeeDee Lamb to produce ridiculous highlight reel catches possibly makes Oklahoma more exciting than Baker Mayfield and the national semifinalist Sooners of last year.
Prediction: Oklahoma 44, Iowa State 19
 
Game of the Day: #12 LSU @ #7 Auburn (2:30 PM CT; CBS)
Both of these squads pulled upsets against higher tiered teams Week 1, and are only strengthening the entirety of the SEC conference. The defenses will be filled with former 4 and 5-stars, and will be absolutely stout. However, Auburn did display some flaws in their close win over Washington in Week 1, while LSU continues to climb rankings and prove that they are truly back to the stardom they had when Les Miles was in charge. The Bayou Tigers will capitalize on the mistakes committed by the Tigers of Auburn, and jump to the top 10 next week.
Prediction: LSU 21, Auburn 18
 
Evening Spotlight: #4 Ohio State vs. #15 TCU (7:00 PM CT; ABC)
Essentially, Texas Christian is playing a home game with AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, only being roughly 20 miles from campus. However, TCU just made a cross-metro trip into the Dallas area, when they found an abnormal amount of luck in their 42-12 over SMU. Ohio State will face its first official challenge of the season, after cracking Oregon State and Rutgers in consecutive weeks. Despite Urban Meyer’s suspension, the Buckeyes simply have too much talent to not succeed against the Horned Frogs, and Ohio State will be able to out-execute the Frogs in a game that will showcase speed in every shape and fashion.
Prediction: Ohio State 34, TCU 23
 
Late Night Action: #10 Washington @ Utah (9:00 PM CT; ESPN)
Rice-Eccles Stadium is an extremely underrated venue when discussions pop up about what PAC-12 stadium poses the largest home-field advantage. Utah is solid year in and year out, and this season is no different. Plus, teams always seem to struggle when they head into Salt Lake City. In contrast, Washington sports veterans in the backfield with quarterback Jake Browning and running back Myles Gaskin. The defense has also been able to reload over the past year, and they will be able to rattle Utah’s multiple-faceted offense just enough to escape Utah with a victory.
Prediction: Washington 24, Utah 21