To put it simply, do not expect this weekend of college football to be as good as last. But that’s alright, because at least we have NFL football back in action come Sunday. With the weak non-conference slate this weekend, there is still very high potential for an upset. And even this early in the season, a major upset can have tremendous repercussions on the CFB Playoff. The games might not be great, but here is what you should be watching this weekend.
Prediction Record in Games to Watch: 7-3.
#13 LOUISVILLE CARDINALS @ Syracuse Orange, 8:00 p.m. ET
Lamar Jackson is the best player in this game, and he is going to make it abundantly clear. Syracuse will try their best to contain him, but this game has a pretty high blowout possibility to me. Even at home, I don’t think Syracuse will be able to control the time of possession with their run game and slow down the high-paced Cardinal offense. Louisville’s defense is also pretty good, in case you didn’t notice.
Line: Louisville -14.5.
Penn State Nittany Lions @ PITTSBURGH PANTHERS, 12:00 p.m. ET
This is a great rivalry game, and therefore needs to be on the list of games to watch. Both teams will likely be fighting for bowl appearances this year, so every game is vital. Pitt has brought back James Conner, a very talented halfback, and is led by senior quarterback Nathan Peterman. Peterman is nothing special, but he gets the job done and avoids mistakes. Unlike Pitt, however, Penn State is extremely young on both sides of the ball. Their youth also attributes to a lack of experience that will hurt them on the road in this match-up.
Line: Pittsburgh -5.0.
Arkansas Razorbacks @ #15 TCU HORNED FROGS, 7:00 p.m. ET
This is a match-up of two vastly different play styles. The Razorbacks are a more tradition ground-and-pound offense while TCU likes to get up and down field in the spread scheme. Both teams started the year 1-0, but TCU is the ranked team and playing at home. Remember, the last time Arkansas coach Bret Bielema played against TCU, he took a loss in the 2011 Rose Bowl (while he was at Wisconsin). I’ll take Kenny Hill and the Horned Frogs to lengthen their home winning streak to 15 games.
Line: TCU -7.5.
BYU COUGARS @ Utah Utes, 7:30 p.m. ET
Welcome to the Holy War, another great rivalry being played this weekend. For me, this is the game I am most excited to tune in for this weekend. Utah returns a very talented defensive unit, but they are also trying to pick up the pieces of losing both their starting quarterback and running back from last season. On the other hand, BYU is back under the control of now 26-year-old starting quarterback Taysom Hill. Hill has had a very injury-riddled college career, but is extremely talented when healthy. He also is paired in the backfield with another senior in Jamal Williams. I think the Cougars can ride their two senior stars to a victory on the road in the Holy War.
Line: Utah -3.0.
Texas Tech Red Raiders @ ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS, 10:00 p.m. ET
Although he has only been the starter for one game, Manny Wilkins looked very good for Arizona State last weekend, as he showed plenty of the skills that make him an elite playmaker. However, Texas Tech is not shy with their quarterback either. Patrick Mahomes was responsible for over 5000 yards last year and under head coach Kliff Kingsbury, we can expect another monster season. Yet, the Sun Devils are tough to play at home, and that crowd will certainly be rocking for one the night’s marquee games.
Line: Arizona State -2.5.