College Football Week 2 Predictions

Movie Quote of the Day:

“When you decide to be something, you can be it. That’s what they don’t tell you in the church. When I was your age they would say we can become cops, or criminals. Today, what I’m saying to you is this: When you’re facing a loaded gun, what’s the difference?”

– Frank Costello, The Departed (2006)

It was an entertaining first week of college football. My biggest regret is that I didn’t pick Northwestern to beat Stanford. I came close, but I thought Stanford’s talent would help them pull away from Northwestern. How about BYU? I didn’t think I was going to get that pick when Taysom Hill got hurt, but wow! What a game! I really felt good about my Arizona State pick, I really didn’t expect Texas A&M’s defense to be that much proved. I’m looking forward to this weekend. Here’s the intriguing match-ups for week two of college football and my predictions:

2015 record: 9-3 (75%)

Friday:

Utah running back Devontae Booker.
Utah running back Devontae Booker.

Utah State vs. #24 Utah
Salt Lake City, Utah
Rice-Eccles Stadium
Line: Utah -12.5

This will be an underrated game. Utah State is no slouch at all. I’m curious to see how Utah comes out for this game after a big win against Michigan last week. This won’t be an easy task for Utah’s defense. Utah State returns a lot of experience. They also have depth on defense. I think Utah will come out with the win in a close game because I think they’re the better coached team.

Prediction: Utah 31, Utah State 24

Saturday:

Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson.
Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson.

Houston vs. Louisville
Louisville, Ky.
Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium
Line: Louisville -13

Louisville looked awful most of the game against Auburn last week. Louisville did’t start to make it a close game against Auburn until Lamar Jackson took over at quarterback. Houston isn’t a bad team. They have capability to beat Louisville if they’re not ready to play. Houston is breaking in a new head coach, but they have a lot of talent on their team. Houston just lacks experience. However, I think Bobby Petrino is too good of a coach to lose this game. He’ll find a way to get this Louisville team going.

Prediction: Louisville 34, Houston 21

Michigan quarterback Jake Rudock.
Michigan quarterback Jake Rudock.

Oregon State vs. Michigan
Ann Arbor, Mich.
Michigan Stadium
Line: Michigan -14.5

I believe new head coach Gary Andersen will get Oregon State in the right direction, but he’s going to need some time. The Beavers won their first game of the season against Weber State, but this team has a lot of holes along with youth at quarterback. Not a very good recipe for a football team. Despite the loss last week, Michigan looked much improved. I think Harbaugh get his first win at Michigan.

Prediction: Michigan 24, Oregon State 13

Colorado State wide receiver Rashard Higgins.
Colorado State wide receiver Rashard Higgins.

Minnesota vs. Colorado State
Fort Collins, Colo.
Hughes Stadium
Line: Minnesota -5

Minnesota came so close to knocking off #2 ranked TCU. The Golden Gophers impressed a lot of people last week despite the loss. Colorado State still has Rashard Higgins, who was a Biletnikoff Award finalist last year. If Colorado State still had Jim McElwain as head coach I’d pick the Rams to win. However, I really like Jerry Kill at Minnesota. They’ll get the first win of the season in a close one.

Prediction: Minnesota 28, Colorado State 20

Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood.
Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood.

Washington State vs. Rutgers
Piscataway, N.J.
High Point Solutions Stadium
Line: Rutgers -3.5

Washington State looked really bad last week in their loss to Portland State. Head coach Mike Leach is supposed to be offensive guru, but the Cougars only scored 17 last week. Rutgers had the exact opposite result in their game last week, they beat Norfolk State 63-13. I think Rutgers is well-coached under head coach Kyle Flood. Washington State has to travel all the way across the country to play this game. I’ll pick the east coast team.

Prediction: Rutgers 31, Washington State 20

Notre Dame quarterback Malik Zaire.
Notre Dame quarterback Malik Zaire.

#9 Notre Dame vs. Virginia
Charlottesville, Va.
Scott Stadium
Line: Notre Dame -11.5

Notre Dame looked pretty good last week against Texas. I think the have a really good chance to win a lot of games this year. Virginia struggled last week in their loss against UCLA. I’m curious to see if Notre Dame was that good last week, or if Texas was just that bad. For now, I think Notre Dame looks like the real deal. Not to mention Brian Kelly is a much better coach than Mike London. I think Notre Dame wins this game easily.

Prediction: Notre Dame 34, Virginia 10

Iowa State wide receiver Allen Lazard.
Iowa State wide receiver Allen Lazard.

Iowa vs. Iowa State
Ames, Iowa
Jack Trice Stadium
Line: Iowa -3

Both of these teams won easily in their games last week. I’ve learned to never overlook this rivalry game. There seems to be three teams every year that Iowa State gets up for and plays well: Iowa, Kansas, and West Virginia. Iowa State only won two games last year, but one of them was against Iowa. Iowa State has won three of the last four meetings against Iowa. I can’t bring myself to pick Iowa State though, despite the fact they’re playing at home. I think Iowa wins in a dog fight.

Prediction: Iowa 24, Iowa State 21

Cal quarterback Jared Goff.
Cal quarterback Jared Goff.

San Diego State vs. Cal
Berkeley, Calif.
California Memorial Stadium
Line: Cal -14

Both of these teams won easily last week in their first game of the season. San Diego State has some question marks on offense, but should have a stout defense. Cal has a pretty good quarterback in Jared Goff, who is projected to be an early draft pick in April. I think Sonny Dykes is a decent head coach. Cal made a huge stride last year in Dykes’ second year. I like Cal to score a lot of points and take care of business.

Prediction: Cal 42, San Diego State 24

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield.
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield.

#19 Oklahoma vs. #23 Tennessee
Knoxville, Tenn.
Neyland Stadium
Line: Oklahoma -1.5

I’m really looking forward to this game. I’m interested to see how good Oklahoma really is. Tennessee has been a sexy pick all offseason to win games this year due to their last three recruiting classes. I really want to pick Tennessee to win this game, but I don’t think this program is quite there yet. Tennessee game up 30 points to Bowling Green last week and Oklahoma will have a much tougher test against this Tennessee offense. I think the Sooners get the big road win in a shootout.

Prediction: Oklahoma 41, Tennessee 38

LSU running back Leonard Fournette.
LSU running back Leonard Fournette.

#14 LSU vs. #25 Mississippi State
Starkville, Miss.
Davis Wade Stadium
Line: LSU -5

This is a tough game to judge since LSU didn’t play last week. Mississippi State did what they were supposed to do and beat Southern Miss comfortably after pulling away in the second half. Mississippi State had a terrific season last year, but they lost a lot of from that defense. It showed last week as Mississippi State gave up over 400 yards of offense to Southern Miss. I expect LSU to be ready to play this game. They’ve had all offseason to prepare, plus an extra week. I think LSU gets a nice road win.

Prediction: LSU 27, Mississippi State 21

Boise State head coach Bryan Harsin.
Boise State head coach Bryan Harsin.

#20 Boise State vs. BYU
Provo, Utah
LaVell Edwards Stadium
Line: Boise State -2.5

Boise State squeaked out a win last week against a Washington team that might win six games. I’ll credit that to Chris Petersen facing off against his former team. BYU got a nice win against Nebraska due to scoring a touchdown on a Hail Mary as time expired. This matchup has gone back and forth the last three years. I rarely ever see a team come out ready to play after having an emotional win the previous week. History sows that team always plays lackadaisical in their next game. This is a tough one, but I think I’m going to take Boise State to get the road win.

Prediction: Boise State 30, BYU 17

Game of the Week:

Oregon quarterback Vernon Adams.
Oregon quarterback Vernon Adams.

#7 Oregon vs. #5 Michigan State
East Lansing, Mich.
Spartan Stadium
Line: Michigan State -3

Oregon impressed offensively in week one scoring 61 points. However, the Ducks also gave up 42 points to Eastern Washington. Michigan State didn’t impress much at all as they only defeated Western Michigan by 13 points. It’s a different type of game this week for both teams. I expect both teams to play better. Oregon always seems to struggle against teams that run a pro style offense. Michigan State almost knocked off Oregon last year on the road. I like them to get some payback, and I think a lot of points will be scored in this game.

Prediction: Michigan State 44, Oregon 41

Thanks for reading

Shane Price
Follow me on Twitter – @priceisright53

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