Michael Pellegrino Staff Writer
After a very exciting week one of college football, we take a look forward to match-ups in week two that could have an impact on the college football playoff. Rivalries, ranked matchups, and high-ranking teams in action all highlight what should be a fantastic week of games.
Georgia (1-0) v. South Carolina (1-0) – In a match-up in the best college football conference in the country, the SEC, two teams coming off wins meet up in their first conference match-up of the season. Georgia is coming off their home opener, beating Austin Peay 45-0, with quarterback Jake Fromm leading the way with two Touchdowns. South Carolina is also coming off a massive win at home against Coastal Carolina, winning 49-15. Junior quarterback, Jake Bentley, threw for four touchdowns, with running back Rico Dowdle rushing for over one hundred yards and a touchdown. In this game, look to see which defense steps up and creates turnovers to give two high-powered offenses as much possession as possible. While South Carolina is one of the most intimidating environments in the country, I’m predicting Georgia to come in and take care of business, getting a solid road win to benefit their resumé come playoff time. Georgia 27 – South Carolina 17
Clemson (1-0) v. Texas A&M (1-0)- Another team looking to bolster their resumé with a solid road win, Clemson is coming off a trouncing of Furman at home, 48-7. Coach Dabo Sweeney confirmed this week that he would again run with two Quarterbacks this game, saying, “Nothing happened (against Furman) to warrant not playing both those guys.” This shows the confidence that the coach has in his guys and how he chooses to run his system. Texas A&M is also coming off a huge win, beating Northwestern State at home 59-7. The big story from this game was junior running back, Trayveon Williams, rushing for 240 yards and 3 touchdowns. This game should be a high scoring affair, and if Clemson’s defense can stop the running game of Texas A&M, their dual-QB system should help keep the defense guessing. Clemson 34 – Texas A&M 27
Penn State (1-0) v. Pitt (1-0)- This is one of the highlight rivalry games of this week, with two in-state powerhouses known lately as the “Keystone Classic”. Penn State is coming off a rocky start to the season, nearly losing at home to Appalachian State, beating them in overtime 45-38. It was a huge shock that at the beginning of the season the 10th-ranked team in the country would be challenged by a team outside the Power five conferences at home. Senior quarterback Trace McSorley looked okay, while only having a completion percentage of 58.3%. When the team needed him most he stepped up. What worries me is if the Penn State defense can perform against a hungry Pitt team coming off a big win at home against Albany. Pitt was able to force two turnovers against Albany, and with their sophomore quarterback Kenny Pickett having big-game experience (Upsetting Miami last season); I think Pitt is able to get the job done.
Pitt 27 – Penn State 20
USC (1-0) v. Stanford (1-0)- This game is our only match-up between two top 25 teams this week (as of writing this). USC started off slow at home against UNLV, but with their defense holding the rebels to only a touchdown in the second half, the offense led by JT Daniels was able to pull away in the second half. This game was a huge wake-up call for USC. In a conference with Stanford, Washington, and Oregon, they need to play better to have a chance at the playoff. Stanford also started slow at home against San Diego State, relying on strong defense in the second half to start the season with a win. Junior Quarterback K.J. Costello had a phenomenal opener, throwing for 332 yards and four touchdowns. His leadership should help guide Stanford to a huge conference win.
Stanford 27 – USC 17.
AP Top 10
4. Ohio State
8. Notre Dame