Around Campus Week 2
Ever hear of Frank Merriwell?
Neither have Lagarrette Blount and Byron Hout.
On an opening weekend when college football promoted a sportsmanship theme, the actions of those two was anything but sportsmanlike.
Welcome back to The Campus Game, where you’ll always be treated with respect, never get sucker punched, and can enjoy college football with nary a threat of trash talk.
Each Tuesday, catch up on the week’s news and national rankings with Around Campus (formerly Around the Nation) and preview the coming week’s best games with Tuesday’s Top Ten Lists.
Visit again on Thursday for Around Campus in the SEC and Professor’s Picks.
Southwest … Bradford Injured. Oklahoma quarterback and 2008 Heisman Trophy winner Sam Bradford was injured in the Sooners upset loss to BYU. A prognosis for Bradford is to be determined; he will be sidelined for anywhere from a few weeks to the entire season.
Midwest … Are Two of the Big Boys Back? Two proud programs, much maligned the past couple years, opened the 2009 slate in fine fashion.
Rich Rodriguez and Michigan thumped a sound Western Michigan team 31-7. Two freshmen quarterbacks, Tate Forcier (3 TD passes) and Denard Robinson (43 yd TD run), gave Big Blue fans plenty to cheer about and soothed a seething situation for at least another week. In South Bend, Charlie Weis and Notre Dame bombed Nevada 35-0 behind four Jimmy Clausen touchdown throws. ND travels to the Big House this week to determine which storied program is closer to full recovery.
The biggest game in the heartland will take place in Columbus. Ohio State welcomes USC to the horseshoe for a primetime Saturday night game.
South … A tale of two conferences … was not a positive story for the ACC. Out of conference losses by Duke, Maryland, NC State, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest knocked half the league from the ranks of the unbeaten before Labor Day.
Georgia Tech is the ACC’s best team in my opinion and hosts Clemson in a big Thursday night game.
In the SEC, Georgia lost to Oklahoma State but all other league teams thrived.
This week’s top games with SEC teams include UCLA at Tennessee, Miss State at Auburn, South Carolina at Georgia, and Vandy at LSU.
East … Can anybody top Papa? Penn State hosts an improved Syracuse this week, while East Carolina ventures to West Virginia to face the Mountaineers.
West … Aren’t Cowboys supposed to lasso Longhorns? Texas makes a rare trip to Rocky Mountain territory to face the Cowboys of Wyoming, but expect the Cowboys to be the ones getting all tied up.
Campus Game Top Ten Rankings (Week 2)
10. Cal: Golden Bears easily handled Maryland get E. Washington.
9. Oklahoma State: Cowboys gunned down Georgia and face tough Houston.
8. Ole Miss: Rebels should cruise against SE Louisiana.
7. Penn State: Nittany Lions host an improved Syracuse squad.
6. Georgia Tech: Yellow Jackets face one of their season’s sterner tests with visiting Clemson.
5. Ohio State: Bucks will need more solid effort to contain SC.
4. USC: Trojans travel to Big Ten country for showdown with Buckeyes.
3. Alabama: Tide was best looking team of Week 1 to me … host Florida International.
2. Texas: Longhorns venture to Cowboy country to play Wyoming.
1. Florida: Gators play second preseason exhibition against Troy.
Campus Game Tuesday’s Top Ten Games (Week 2):
1o. Stanford at Wake Forest: Jim Harbaugh’s squad is fiesty while Wake is wounded.
9. East Carolina at West Virginia: Skip Holtz and the Pirates were impressive in Week 1.
8. Air Force at Minnesota: The Gophers were fortunate to beat Syracuse in overtime, while the AFA strafed Nicholls State.
7. Vanderbilt at LSU: Tigers might be feeling jet lag after 2500 mile trip to Washington.
6. South Carolina at Georgia: Gamecocks tough defense threatens an 0-2 start for UGA.
5. Houston at Oklahoma State: The Cougars from C-USA pose a nice test for the Cowboys after the big win over Georgia.
4. UCLA at Tennessee: Lane Kiffin got off to a great start last week … Bruins will be a bigger challenge.
3. Clemson at Georgia Tech: The Rambling Wreck’s option will need to be at full speed for a Thursday night game on the Flats.
2. ND at Michigan: Irish and Wolverines looked mighty solid in season openers.
1. USC at Ohio State: Buckeyes received a scare against Navy, now welcome the talented Trojans.
Visit Thursday for Professor’s Picks of all the big games.
See you at kickoff!