After a thrilling first week of the college football season, the encore, week 2, produces exactly zero Top 25 match-ups. However, that doesn’t mean that there is nothing to watch outside of the BYU-Utah game. There are two games on Friday night and twelve hours worth of games on Saturday. These are the ones to watch:
Utah State at USC
Saturday, 12:00 PM- PAC-12 Network
USC is coming off of an embarrassing loss to top-ranked Alabama and will be looking for redemption. Utah State won in Week 1 against FCS Weber State by a score of 45-6. They did that on the back of senior running back Devante Mays. Mays ran for 208 yards on only 18 carries and accounted for 3 touchdowns in the process. In USC’s loss, they allowed ‘Bama to roll up 242 yards rushing. USC will come out fired up, but it will still be closer than most people think.
USC 38 - Utah State 28
Western Kentucky at 1 Alabama
Saturday, 1:30 PM - ESPN 2
WKU was very impressive in Week 1, beating Rice by a final score of 46-14. They displayed how much talent they have on both sides of the ball. QB Mike White threw for over 500 yards and 3 touchdowns. The defense was also impressive, holding the Owls rushing attack to just 105 yards.
And they are about to get destroyed by Alabama.
Look, this game will not be close. Alabama is going to win. But with the offensive talent that the Tide appear to have and the ferocious defense that they are fielding, this could be one of the most talented football teams we’ve seen in years. I’m no fan of Alabama, but I am a fan of football, and this is a team any football fan should take the time to watch.
Alabama 49 - WKU 3
Arkansas at 15 TCU
Saturday, 5:00 PM - ESPN
TCU and Arkansas were both involved in competitive games over the weekend. Arkansas beat Louisiana Tech 21-20, and TCU pulled away late against South Dakota St. in a shootout. If you’re looking for an upset this week, this is the game to watch. As impressive as the TCU offense was, their defense was every bit the opposite. If the Razorbacks can cut down on the mistakes with a first-year starter under center, a top Big 12 team will fall for the second straight week.
Arkansas 28 - TCU 24
Iowa St. at 16 Iowa
Saturday, 5:30 PM - BTN
The other in-state rivalry game takes place in Iowa, for the Cy-Hawk trophy. The Iowa Hawkeyes are dominating the all-time series, and will be favored to win this game. It will still be an emotional game and both sides will be highly motivated. This should be entertaining in between commercials during the BYU-Utah game, even if it won’t be necessarily competitive.
Iowa 35 - Iowa St. 14
Virginia at 24 Oregon
Saturday, 8:30 PM - ESPN
Bronco Mendenhall’s first game as the head coach of the Virginia Cavaliers did not go so well. They lost to FCS Richmond, 37-20 and will be scrambling to beat the Ducks to avoid falling into an 0-2 hole. If you’re still a fan of Bronco after his departure, you’ll have someone to root for. If you’re bitter at Bronco for leaving Provo, you may want to stay on the couch for this game. The talent disparity is too much to overcome.
Oregon 45 - Virginia 17