The college football season got off to a lackluster start last night – with the exception of LeGarrette Blount’s performance during the extra period. What’s sad is Blount was in the shadow of Jeremiah Johnson last year, and this was to be his year in the spotlight. Unfortunately, he wanted all of his spotlight on the first night, and because of that, he will be all but forgotten in our memories after the weekend is over. That game, paired with the earlier game, South Carolina vs. NC State, left a lot of us wanting more. Tulsa and Tulane didn’t exactly deliver Friday night either. So, Saturday marks our best chance to see some real college football barn-burners. Week 1 is typically reserved for the powerhouses beating up on some lowly D-1, and sometimes, D-2 schools, but there are a few games that stand out this weekend. Here, we’ll list the three types of Season Opening games and how they might play out.
These are the games that are so lopsided Vegas doesn’t even bother with spreads. They’re the games that are built solely to ensure a team gets off to a 1-0 start and get them off on the right foot in they’re national or conference championship campaign. You know the type, big school at home versus a small school with little to no national following. Need some examples?
Akron @ #9 Penn State, Navy @ #6 Ohio State, Jacksonville St. @ #15 Georgia Tech, Montana St. @ Michigan St., The Citadel @ #21 North Carolina, Louisian-Monroe @ #2 Texas, Florida Atlantic @ #24 Nebraska, Charleston Southern @ #1 Florida, and as much as I hate to include them since they don’t typically schedule easy games, #4 USC hosting San Jose State.
The Blowouts Gone Wrong
These games have the same intention as those previously mentioned, however, they can backfire, much as Michigan’s upset loss to Appalachian State. There aren’t many of them, but at least one is sure to end in heartbreak for a hopeful team. Here’s our pool of potential upset games.
#22 Iowa vs. Northern Iowa, Auburn vs. Lousiana Tech, #25 Kansas vs. Northern Colorado, #12 California vs. Maryland, UCLA vs. San Diego State, and my pick for the most likely upset, #23 Notre Dame vs. Nevada.
The Legit Matchups
These games are the exception. They don’t always end in a competitive game, but you have to give the schools credit for diving right into the fray and not scheduling a pushover to kick their season off. Much like the Boise State – Oregon matchup Thursday night, they can make or break your season.
#13 Georgia @ #9 Oklahoma State, #20 BYU @ #3 Oklahoma, and Week 1′s main event, #5 Alabama vs. #7 Virgina Tech at the Georgia Dome.