College Football Week 3: Previews & Predictions

The book entitled “2013 College Football Season” is starting to turn it’s pages, and Week 3 will be highlighted by a game in College Station between top-10 powers Alabama and Texas A&M. Here are my game-by-game predictions for the third week of the season.
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#7 Louisville (2-0) @ Kentucky (1-1) 12:00 P.M., ESPN/WatchESPN Yes, the rule of thumb in recent years has been to pick any SEC team versus an out-of-conference opponent, but this is Louisville and Teddy Bridgewater. And if Bridgewater has another huge game in a blowout versus a team from the best conference in college football, it would certainly be one of his biggest games regarding his Heisman-trophy run. Louisville 45, Kentucky 17

Virginia Tech (1-1) @ East Carolina (2-0, 1-0 C-USA) 12:00 P.M., FoxSports1 Logan Thomas and the this year’s Hokie offense is downright abysmal compared to some of years’ past, but the defense is on par with just about anyone in the nation. This is a polar opposite to ECU and QB Shane Carden, who has been one of the best passers of weeks one and two. Look for the VT defense to force some late turnovers and avoid the upset. Virginia Tech 23, East Carolina 16

#16 UCLA (2-0) vs #23 Nebraska (1-0) 12:00 P.M., ABC Nebraska has had some problems defensively in games one and two, and UCLA QB Brett Hundley should have a big game. But never fear, Taylor Martinez and Ameer Abdullah will save the day for the Cornhuskers’ offense in a high-scoring affair. Turnovers will play a big part in this one, and both quarterbacks will have to avoid the big mistakes in order to win. Nebraska 37, UCLA 30

Boston College (2-0, 1-0 ACC) @ USC (1-1, 0-1 Pac-12) 3:30 P.M., Pac-12 Network After a downright embarressing performance in a 10-7 loss versus Washington State last Saturday night, the Trojans need a bounce-back win. This week, they will look to their big-play targets for production on offense, such as WR Marquise Lee. But BC RB Andre Williams, who has already racked up 318 yards this year, will look to lead an upset bid over USC to start 3-0. Boston College 17, USC 13

Georgia Tech (1-0) @ Duke (2-0) 3:30 P.M., ESPNU/WatchESPN Georgia Tech’s triple option threat might score big on Duke, but the Blue Devils have looked surprisingly solid on defense in their first two games. If Yellow Jackets are to contend in the ACC-Coastal, then it starts here, with big-play man Vad Lee and an offense that destroyed Elon, 70-0, in Week 1. Georgia Tech 31, Duke 17

#1 Alabama (1-0) @ #6 Texas A&M (2-0) P.M., CBS For the full preview of this game, click here: Alabama 31, Texas A&M 20

Tennessee (2-0) @ #2 Oregon (2-0) 3:30 P.M., ABC Yes, I know this IS an SEC defense. And I know the Volunteers typically play well against top-level teams. But this is Oregon, the team to beat right now in all of college football (looking at you, Bama). Only a heart-throbbing Tennessee fan would ‘volunteer’ to fly a couple thousand miles to Autzen, Oregon, and the ones that do could witness their team getting blown away by Marcus Mariota and the Ducks. Oregon 49, Tennessee 14

#19 Washington (1-0) @ Illinois (2-0) 6:00 P.M., BTN Keith Price and the Huskies displayed a highly talented team in a 38-6 thwomping of Boise State in Week 1, while the Fighting Illini recorded a 45-17 win over Cincinnati last week. For Illinois, Nathan Scheelhaase and Josh Ferguson will have to play phoenominaly to pull this one off, but Washington’s defense in the end will prove too powerful. Washington 37, Illinois 20

Mississippi State (1-1) @ Auburn (2-0) 7:00 P.M., ESPN/WatchESPN Auburn has started off 2-0 thanks to the QB play of Nick Marshall, while Miss. St. will most likely play this game without their QB, Tyler Russell, due to injury. The Bulldogs will need to find rhythm on offense, or else the Tigers could force some turnovers and pull away late. Auburn 24, Mississippi State 10

#4 Ohio State (2-0) @ California (1-1) 7:00 P.M., FOX If Ohio State doesn’t watch out, Cal could pull off the upset. Led by freshman QB Jared Goff who leads the FBS in pass yards, the Golden Bears will put up some points versus the Buckeye defense, who has struggled in it’s first two games. However, Kenny Guiton is a great backup if Braxton Miller is not cleared to play, and under Urban Meyer the squad will play ‘just well enough to win.’ Ohio State 38, California 28

Vanderbilt (1-1, 0-1 SEC) @ #13 South Carolina (1-1, 0-1 SEC) 7:00 P.M., ESPN/WatchESPN After a dissappointing loss to Georgia in their first SEC game, it is do-or-die for the Gamecocks. They will have to be playing on all cylinders to reach the SEC Title Game now, and will need some help. The QB battle in this game, Austyn Carta-Samuels (Vandy) vs Connor Shaw (S CAR) is intriguing, but look for Spurrier’s South Carolina to control the tempo and take the win. South Carolina 31, Vanderbilt 14

#25 Ole Miss (2-0, 1-0 SEC) @ Texas (1-1) 8:00 P.M., Longhorn Network Throughout the past couple of years, UT football has taken a downward spiral, and will struggle again versus the confident Rebels, led by Bo Wallace. Ole Miss will shut down the Longhorns on defense, and rush at will on offense. Ole Miss 28, Texas 10

#20 Wisconsin (2-0) @ Arizona State (1-1) 10:30 P.M., ESPN/WatchESPN After a couple of tune-up games in which they have won by a combined score of 93-0, Wisconsin should be well-prepared for Arizona State. Meanwhile, QB Taylor Kelly and the Sun Devils are eyeing a signature win before Pac-12 play begins. Look for RB James White and the Badgers’ running game to explode, even against the sturdy ASU defense, and win a close game. Wisconsin 28, Arizona State 24

Other Notable Week 3 Games:

Akron @ #11 Michigan
Tulsa @ #14 Oklahoma
#5 Stanford @ Army
Southern Miss @ Arkansas
UL-Monroe @ Wake Forest
Nevada @ #10 Florida State
Iowa @ Iowa State
Kent State @ #8 LSU
Maryland @ Connecticut
#21 Notre Dame @ Purdue
Western Michigan @ #17 Northwestern
Oregon State @ Utah


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