"O.P" Picks, Volume 2 for Week 1

By Amsinger - August 28, 2007


I gave you my picks and projected stats from the ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten and the MAC. Up next are my picks from the CUSA, Independants, Mountain West, Pac-Ten, SEC, Sun Belt and the WAC.

Tulsa - 23
LA. MONROE - 24

UPSET SPECIAL #5!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*Bad start for new HC Todd Graham. Sure QB Paul Smith and RB Courtney Tennail are back, so are all ELEVEN offensive starter for ULM!!! The Warhawks ended '06 winners in three of their last four...the momentum carries over to Thursday night at home.

Lancaster: 14-24, 166 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT; 8 carries, 83 yards, 1 TD
Dawson: 21 carries, 137 yards, 1 TD
Sapp: 4 catches, 90 yards

Smith: 24-41, 241 yards, 2 TD, 3 INT; 10 carries, 49 yards
Tennial: 18 carries, 77 yards

East Carolina - 7
VIRGINIA TECH - 35

*Tough game for everyone in Blacksburg, including the visiting Pirates. With so much emotion filling Lane Stadium, the intensity level for the Hokies will reach an all-time high. Give the ECU defense some credit for holding guys like Brandon Ore, Sean Glennon and Eddie Royal to JUST 35 points. The offense didn't have a shot in this one, with Beamer's great defense and the arrest of ECU QB Rob Kass earlier this week. Well, it's safe to say the Pirates didn't stand a chance in this one. Solid win for Va Tech - for all the right reasons, and they'll get ready for their biggest test of the year in week two (LSU).

Glennon: 25-38, 277 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
Ore: 27 carries, 148 yards, 1 TD
Royal: 4 catches, 83 yards, 2 TD

Clay: 13-30, 118 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT
Johnson: 31 carries, 96 yards, 1 TD

UAB - 3
MICHIGAN ST. - 17

*Glad to see new MSU HC Mark Dantonio win his first game in East Lansing, but jeez...this one will be U-G-L-Y! The lone star to watch will be MSU RB Javon Ringer. With a new offensive coordinator (Don Treadwell), a new QB (Brian Hoyer) and THREE new receivers, the 5'9 junior (Ringer) will be the star. The Spartans will go as far as Javon carries them. As for UAB, this will be a tough first season for HC Neil Callaway. Four returning starters on both sides of the ball isn't good. 2006 was rough in Birmingham and '07 will be just as bad for the Blazers.

Hoyer: 14-20, 128 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Ringer: 35 carries, 171 yards, 2 TD

Webb: 10-26, 110 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT; 9 carries, 50 yards

Marshall - 9
MIAMI (FL) - 42

*The U is back! Randy Shannon stepped into a GREAT situation and will reap the benefits all season long. His defense is awesome, with future NFL stars like DE Calais Campbell (10.5 sacks in '06) and FS Kenny Phillips (6 tackles for a loss and 4 INT in '06). Some folks in Coral Gables were worried after hearing MLB Glenn Cook will miss the first 3-4 games to injury. No worries, converted linebacker and SUPER FROSH Allen Bailey may just keep the job after this stellar opener. Offensively, the Canes understand RB Javarris James is the man. QB Kirby Freeman will simply manage the game and find his open targets - despite being new to the starting eleven. Expect TWO defensive touchdowns in this early season blowout.

Freeman: 20-28, 195 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
James: 28 carries, 203 yards, 3 TD
Shields: 7 catches, 150 yards, 1 TD

Morris: 18-34, 167 yards, 0 TD, 4 INT
Small: 18 carries, 58 yards
Marshall: 16 carries, 40 yards

Ole Miss - 13
MEMPHIS - 14

UPSET SPECIAL #6!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
*Sweet revenge for last year's 28-25 loss to the Rebels. HC Tommy West watches 8 starters on both sides of the ball battle in the trenches against an SEC team. Former walk-on QB Seth Adams does NOT have a smooth opener for Ed Orgeron who may want to start contacting a realtor after this opening day disaster.

Hankins: 17-40, 223 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Doss: 30 carries, 136 yards, 2 TD
Calhoun: 7 catches, 118 yards

Adams: 14-27, 145 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Ellis: 34 carries, 107 yards, 1 TD
McCluster: 5 catches, 71 yards

Houston - 28
OREGON - 48

*Backyard football has returned! Lots of scoring to enjoy in Eugene this weekend. The combination of Dixon/Stewart/Johnson is a lethal one for Ducks. Replacing a QB the caliber of Kevin Kolb is daunting and Art Briles sees the drop-off first hand against a very good Pac-Ten team.

Dixon: 22-43, 260 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT; 11 carries, 102 yards, 1 TD
Stewart: 30 carries, 230 yards, 2 TD
Johnson: 12 carries, 80 yards, 1 TD

Joseph: 19-37, 217 yards, 2 TD, 4 INT
Alridge: 24 carries, 112 yards, 1 TD

UCF - 13
N.C. STATE - 24

*Great start for new Wolfpack HC Tom O'Brien! UCF is a solid CUSA team with 17 returning starters and a sound ground game, but defensive lineman Martrel Brown and DeMario Pressley shutdown RB Kevin Smith and company for the hard fought victory. Even with 9 returning starters on defense, George O'Leary has no answer for the terrific tailback combo of Andre Brown and Toney Baker (one of the nation's best backfields I might add).

Evans: 14-28, 201 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT
Baker: 26 carries, 127 yards, 2 TD
Brown: 21 carries, 105 yards

Israel: 10-25, 129 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT; 7 carries, 38 yards
Smith: 36 carries, 116 yards, 1 TD
Thornton: 3 catches, 62 yards

Tennessee-Martin - 17
SO. MISSISSIPPI - 41

*The Golden Eagles are without a doubt the class of CUSA. Damion Fletcher explodes to open the season against a Skyhawk team that will play a strong first ten minutes before being taken over.

Young: 21-32, 294 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT: 4 carries, 62 yards, 1 TD
Fletcher: 25 carries, 178 yards, 2 TD

Nicholls St. - 14
RICE - 55

*David Bailiff wows the Owl faithful in Houston with an offensive display that is sure to get fans thinking Rice can win CUSA!!!! - Hold on now, that was Nicholls State...simmer down. WR Jarett Dillard gets out of the gate with a ridiculously good performance.

Clement: 34-45, 344 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT; 7 carries, 44 yards
Dillard: 14 catches, 207 yards, 2 TD

NEW MEXICO - 35
UTEP - 31

*Another shootout in El Paso! Jordan Palmer is off to the NFL but that won't slow down Mike Price's Miners. Unfortunately for UTEP fans, the Miner "D" gets an "F". New Mexico keeps the rock on the ground with workhorse Rodney Ferguson, who I expect to rush for over 1700 yards this season.

Porterie: 17-23, 256 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Ferguson: 32 carries, 219 yards, 2 TD
Brown: 9 catches, 164 yards, 2 TD

TEXAS TECH - 56
SMU - 27

*Sure SMU is a better team than they were last year and CSTV's college football insider Brian Curtis picked them to win the CUSA this season, but of all the teams in Division 1A last year - no team "burned" me more than the Mustangs. Of their eleven regular season games, I picked just 4 correctly!!!!! So I'm doing HC Phil Bennett a favor and going with a blowout - not just a loss, but a blowout loss in week one.

Harrell: 43-62, 472 yards, 5 TD, 1 INT
Woods: 15 carries, 72 yards, 1 TD; 11 catches, 152 yards, 1 TD
Crabtree: 10 catches, 153 yards, 2 TD

Willis: 26-47, 302 yards, 2 TD, 4 INT; 13 carries, 54 yards
Martin: 16 carries, 61 yards


INDEPENDANTS:

NAVY - 42
Temple - 13

*Gotta feel bad for the Owls. Believe it or not, Temple is actually an improving program. The problem is, this Navy team may be Paul Johnson's best in the 6 years he's been in Annapolis. The running game simply unstoppable in week one for the Mids as QB Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada (swear that's his name) takes the reigns and runs the bone offense to perfection. For those of you who are worried Navy only has 3 returning defensive starters - don't. Ten upperclassmen are set to start on that side of the ball - which means the Midshipmen won't be breaking in inexperienced talent to DC Buddy Green's system.

Enhada: 10-23, 146 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT; 28 carries, 145 yards, 2 TD
Ballard: 31 carries, 155 yards, 2 TD
Campbell: 22 carries, 94 yards

DiMichele: 16-41, 173 yards, 1 TD, 4 INT; 8 carries, 27 yards

W. Kentucky - 0
FLORIDA - 44

*Welcome back Champs!!! Oh yeah, welcome to DIVISION 1A FOOTBALL HILLTOPPERS!!!! My goodness, what a perfect display in Gainesville for HC Urban Meyer. QB Tim Tebow looks like a seasoned vet and the media goes goo-goo for the amount of passing plays Meyer draws up for the burly southpaw.

Tebow: 27-37, 323 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT; 15 carries, 82 yards, 1 TD
Harvin: 6 catches, 90 yards, 1 TD; 8 carries, 105 yards, 1 TD
Caldwell: 8 catches, 140 yards, 1 TD

GEORGIA TECH - 24
Notre Dame - 14

*No upset here. Tech is downright better. Still, losing by just ten at home is a good sign for Charlie Weis. Chan Gailey's group is my pick to win the Coastal Division of the ACC this year and with RB Tashard Choice running behind one of the best offensive lines in the conference, the Jackets have every right to be jacked up about '07. Expect Notre Dame QB Evan Sharpley to be sacked at LEAST five times with guys like Philip Wheeler (9 sacks in '06), Michael Johnson (5 sacks in '06) and Adamm Oliver (3.5 sacks, 7.5 tackles for a loss) coming after him.

Bennett: 16-24, 230 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Choice: 32 carries, 175 yards, 2 TD
Johnson: 9 catches, 122 yards, 1 TD

Sharpley: 13-28, 134 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Thomas: 14 carries, 67 yards, 1 TD
Aldridge: 10 carries, 73 yards, 1 TD
Carlson: 4 catches, 77 yards

ARMY - 20
Akron - 13

UPSET SPECIAL #4!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*The Black Knights are 3-0 vs. Akron coming into this contest and they continue to own the Zips! Just what the doctor ordered for first year HC Stan Brock as the Knights get a win the academy will be proud of.

Williams: 7-12, 63 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT; 20 carries, 107 yards, 1 TD
Pevoto: 2-7, 34 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT; 12 carries, 63 yards, 1 TD

Kennedy: 29 carries, 101 yards, 1 TD

MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE:

UNLV - 27
Utah St. - 17

*Rocky Hinds is an enigma. A highly touted quarterback who left USC for UNLV. He obviously wanted to play and it's been tough - thanks to injuries. After so much hype that his offseason ACL surgery went well - healing process has been brutal and Hinds will miss even MORE time. In steps redshirt freshman Travis Dixon, who doesn't screw up...and that's all HC Mike Sanford can ask. A win is a win for the frustrated Rebels.

Dixon: 13-23, 190 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Summers: 30 carries, 162 yards, 2 TD
Wolfe: 4 catches, 90 yards, 1 TD

Jackson: 14-37, 120 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT; 11 carries, 72 yards, 1 TD

UTAH - 45
Oregon St. - 28

UPSET SPECIAL #7!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*A classic season opener! QB Brian Johnson proves why fans in Salt Lake should be excited about their Utes. OSU beats themselves by playing two quarterbacks throughout the game. Yvenson Bernard (one of the nation's best RB) is a superstar, play one guy in the backfield with him - the whole game and let Yvenson get a groove. HC Mike Riley is making his own bed Corvallis after this season opening loss.

Johnson: 30-45, 349 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT
Poston: 21 carries, 94 yards, 1 TD
Richards: 11 catches, 190 yards, 2 TD

Canfield: 8-18, 118 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Moevao: 10-23, 140 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Bernard: 27 carries, 184 yards, 1 TD; 5 catches, 58 yards, 1 TD

COLORADO ST. - 23
Colorado - 17

*The Rams are getting revenge for three straight years of near misses against the Buffs ('03-'05). QB Caleb Hanie was near perfect in last year's 14-10 thriller on CSTV (20-23, 233 yds.). Expect Hanie to be even more dynamic with an actual RUNNING GAME!!! Remember, RB Kyle Bell was lost for the season in the final week of August with an ACL injury in '06. Bell is back, along with 17 OTHER CSU starters. As for the Buffaloes, HC Dan Hawkins has a better team this year in Boulder, just not enough to beat rival Colorado State. The Rams end their 7 game losing streak.

Hanie: 17-28, 226 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Bell: 34 carries, 163 yards, 1 TD
Morton: 8 catches, 131 yards, 1 TD

Hawkins: 13-22, 142 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT; 8 carries, 58 yards
Charles: 37 carries, 124 yards, 2 TD

S. Carolina St. - 13
AIR FORCE - 42

*QB Shaun Carney begins his 12th year leading the Falcons into battle. Hahahaha...no, but it feels like it. New HC Troy Calhoun enjoys homecoming with a solid win in Colorado Springs.

Carney: 15-23, 183 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT; 20 carries, 108 yards, 2 TD

Virginia - 20
WYOMING - 21

UPSET SPECIAL #1!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*I know, I know, Al Groh has 19 starters back from '06 at Virginia. But they played on a VERY mediocre Cavalier club. This game was a classic last year with UVA winning 13-12 in OT. The Cowboys get revenge thanks to a gutsy comeback from sophomore sensation QB Karsten Sween. Watch out folks, a new star in the Mountain West is born!

Sween: 17-27, 227 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Seldon: 22 carries, 97 yards, 1 TD
Ford: 7 catches, 110 yards, 1 TD

Sewell: 14-30, 118 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT; 17 carries, 82 yards, 2 TD
Peerman: 25 carries, 102 yards

ARIZONA - 24
BYU - 16

UPSET SPECIAL #8!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*Doesn't feel like an upset to me, especially since BYU has to replace Jon Beck - who was absolutely incredible to watch play for the Cougars. This year, the Wildcats have the QB advantage...as Willie Tuitama begins a fantastic junior seasonfor Mike Stoops. With 9 starters back on defense, the Arizona "tackle-team" will simply be too much for new Cougar QB Max Hall.

Tuitama: 20-34, 225 yards, 3 TD, 2 INT
Thomas: 7 catches, 105 yards, 1 TD

Hall: 28-45, 212 yards, 1 TD, 4 INT
Collie: 7 catches, 97 yards, 1 TD

Baylor - 9
TCU - 30

*Last year's contest was close between these two (17-7 TCU) - this year? Not so much. The Horned Frogs lose a a very good graduated QB in Jeff Ballard, thankfully for HC Gary Patterson, the Frogs have one of the top 5 defenses in the NATION!!!! Don't roll your eyes either! They held Texas Tech to just 3 points last year! 9 starters are back from that unit including DE Tommy Blake, who may be an NFL first rounder when his college career is said and done. Junior running back Aaron Brown uses his enormous offensive line to walk all over the Baylor defense.

Dalton: 12-19, 153 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT; 6 carries, 50 yards, 1 TD
Brown: 35 carries, 234 yards, 2 TD

Beatty: 23-40, 188 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Whitaker: 14 carries, 66 yards

NEW MEXICO - 35
UTEP - 31

*Another shootout in El Paso! Jordan Palmer is off to the NFL but that won't slow down Mike Price's Miners. Unfortunately for UTEP fans, the Miner "D" gets an "F". New Mexico keeps the rock on the ground with workhorse Rodney Ferguson, who I expect to rush for over 1700 yards this season.

Porterie: 17-23, 256 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Ferguson: 32 carries, 219 yards, 2 TD
Brown: 9 catches, 164 yards, 2 TD


PAC TEN CONFERENCE:

UTAH - 45
Oregon St. - 28

UPSET SPECIAL #7!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*A classic season opener! QB Brian Johnson proves why fans in Salt Lake should be excited about their Utes. OSU beats themselves by playing two quarterbacks throughout the game. Yvenson Bernard (one of the nation's best RB) is a superstar, play one guy in the backfield with him - the whole game and let Yvenson get a groove. HC Mike Riley is making his own bed Corvallis after this season opening loss.

Johnson: 30-45, 349 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT
Poston: 21 carries, 94 yards, 1 TD
Richards: 11 catches, 190 yards, 2 TD

Canfield: 8-18, 118 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Moevao: 10-23, 140 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Bernard: 27 carries, 184 yards, 1 TD; 5 catches, 58 yards, 1 TD

WASHINGTON - 17
Syracuse - 16

*Tough call! Greg Robinson needed a win to open up at home, just doesn't fall his way. I predict the Orange miss a field goal with a few seconds remaining.

Locker: 22-42, 231 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT
Rankin: 15 carries, 63 yards, 1 TD
Hasty: 9 carries, 45 yards
Reece: 6 catches, 88 yards, 1 TD

Robinson: 14-25, 160 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT; 5 carries, 55 yards
Brinkley: 16 carries, 73 yards
Chiara: 7 carries, 52 yards, 1 TD

Washington St. - 24
WISCONSIN - 28

*Gotta love this one! A week one wonder lives up to the hype. WSU QB Alex Brink has his top tailback and two of his top three targets back from last year. The Cougar defense does have to replace six starters and that inexperience will lead to a HUGE week one performance from RB P.J. Hill. Beating the Badgers in Madison isn't an easy thing to do. Wisconsin went undefeated at Camp Randall Stadium in '06 and I expect them to the run the table at home once again...starting with the Cougars.

Donovan: 23-35, 228 yards, 2 TD, 2 INT
Hill: 33 carries, 201 yards, 2 TD
Beckum: 8 catches, 134 yards, 1 TD

Brink: 31-46, 307 yards, 3 TD, 2 INT
Tardy: 20 carries, 62 yards
Bumpus: 10 catches, 178 yards, 2 TD

UCLA - 58
Stanford - 17

*New Cardinal HC Jim Harbough will run off the field at Stanford Stadium with 4.2 speed after this shellacking. The Bruins are a legitimate national title contender.

Olson: 31-44, 390 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT
Markey: 20 carries, 128 yards, 2 TD
Everett: 12 catches, 171 yards, 2 TD

Ostrander: 24-50, 250 yards, 1 TD, 4 INT
Moore: 8 catches, 133 yards, 1 TD

Houston - 28
OREGON - 48

*Backyard football has returned! Lots of scoring to enjoy in Eugene this weekend. The combination of Dixon/Stewart/Johnson is a lethal one for Ducks. Replacing a QB the caliber of Kevin Kolb is daunting and Art Briles sees the drop-off first hand against a very good Pac-Ten team.

Dixon: 22-43, 260 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT; 11 carries, 102 yards, 1 TD
Stewart: 30 carries, 230 yards, 2 TD
Johnson: 12 carries, 80 yards, 1 TD

Joseph: 19-37, 217 yards, 2 TD, 4 INT
Alridge: 24 carries, 112 yards, 1 TD

ARIZONA - 24
BYU - 16

UPSET SPECIAL #8!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*Doesn't feel like an upset to me, especially since BYU has to replace Jon Beck - who was absolutely incredible to watch play for the Cougars. This year, the Wildcats have the QB advantage...as Willie Tuitama begins a fantastic junior seasonfor Mike Stoops. With 9 starters back on defense, the Arizona "tackle-team" will simply be too much for new Cougar QB Max Hall.

Tuitama: 20-34, 225 yards, 3 TD, 2 INT
Thomas: 7 catches, 105 yards, 1 TD

Hall: 28-45, 212 yards, 1 TD, 4 INT
Collie: 7 catches, 97 yards, 1 TD

Tennessee - 30
CALIFORNIA - 31

*The heavyweight match of week 1 lives up to the hype!!!! QB Nate Longshore adds his name to the long Heisman list with a sparkling performance in the second half. The Vol secondary does a great job containing WR DeSean Jackson until he breaks loose for the game-winner. Cal becomes a legit national title contender after this clash of the titans.

*Longshore: 34-45, 338 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
*Forsett: 27 carries, 152 yards, 1 TD
*Jackson: 5 catches, 140 yards, 1 TD

*Ainge: 26-41, 283 yards, 2 TD, 2 INT
*Foster: 18 carries, 86 yards, 1 TD
*Taylor: 7 catches, 120 yards, 1 TD

San Jose St. - 24
ARIZONA ST. - 42

*I really like San Jose State's team. The Spartans are going to give the the WAC all it can handle this year with QB Adam Tafralis and RB Yonus Davis. Unfortunately for SJSU, there's too much buzz surrounding the Sun Devils with new HC Dennis Erickson. QB Rudy Carpenter gets off to a great start and shows the nation that he may have more weapons than any QB in the Pac Ten.

Carpenter: 28-43, 314 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT
Herring: 10 carries, 109 yards, 2 TD
Torain: 21 carries, 95 yards

Idaho - 0
USC - 49

*The Trojans don't punt the ball the entire game.

Booty: 35-48, 370 yards, 5 TD, 0 INT
Turner: 9 catches, 175 yards, 2 TD


SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE:

LSU - 34
Miss. St. - 10

*The Bulldogs have a decent defense and Matt Flynn struggles to open the game. The Tigers defense wins this game, creating 5 turnovers and scoring a touchdown.

Flynn: 20-30, 205 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT
Doucet: 5 catches, 113 yards, 1 TD

W. Kentucky - 0
FLORIDA - 44

*Welcome back Champs!!! Oh yeah, welcome to DIVISION 1A FOOTBALL HILLTOPPERS!!!! My goodness, what a perfect display in Gainesville for HC Urban Meyer. QB Tim Tebow looks like a seasoned vet and the media goes goo-goo for the amount of passing plays Meyer draws up for the burly southpaw.

Tebow: 27-37, 323 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT; 15 carries, 82 yards, 1 TD
Harvin: 6 catches, 90 yards, 1 TD; 8 carries, 105 yards, 1 TD
Caldwell: 8 catches, 140 yards, 1 TD

Ole Miss - 13
MEMPHIS - 14

UPSET SPECIAL #6!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
*Sweet revenge for last year's 28-25 loss to the Rebels. HC Tommy West watches 8 starters on both sides of the ball battle in the trenches against an SEC team. Former walk-on QB Seth Adams does NOT have a smooth opener for Ed Orgeron who may want to start contacting a realtor after this opening day disaster.

Hankins: 17-40, 223 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Doss: 30 carries, 136 yards, 2 TD
Calhoun: 7 catches, 118 yards

Adams: 14-27, 145 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Ellis: 34 carries, 107 yards, 1 TD
McCluster: 5 catches, 71 yards

E. Kentucky - 17
KENTUCKY - 45

*My pick to win the SEC opens up with a bang! Andre Woodson is a top-notch contender for the Heisman and nobody knows it. YOU GO RICH BROOKS!!!!!!

Woodson: 34-54, 414 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT; 7 carries, 40 yards
Little: 25 carries, 128 yards, 2 TD
Burton: 12 catches, 227 yards, 2 TD

Oklahoma St. - 24
GEORGIA - 34

*Whew! Close call for Mark Richt! Oklahoma State is one of the best "unknown" teams in the nation and they don't roll over and die in Athens. QB Bobby Reid has a great first half against an inexperienced Georgia defense (only 4 starters back) and RB Dantrell Savage rushes for over 100 yards (which is tough to do AT Sanford Stadium. The issue is the OSU defense, there's no way they get the big stop against an offense as talented and battle-tested as Georgia's. QB Matthew Stafford makes all the right plays and Thomas Brown returns from his knee injury to prove why he is the starting tailback over Kregg Lumpkin and Knowshon Moreno.

Stafford: 21-31, 230 yards, 2 TD, 2 INT
Brown: 24 carries, 107 yards, 1 TD
Lumpkin: 12 carries, 70 yards, 1 TD

Reid: 22-41, 218 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT; 12 carries, 96 yards, 2 TD
Savage: 27 carries, 102 yards
Bowman: 7 catches, 80 yards, 1 TD

Troy - 6
ARKANSAS - 41

*The post-Mitch Mustian-era begins on a high note. The funny part about Arkansas is - who cares who plays QB? With McFadden and Jones, you don't need one.

McFadden: 27 carries, 184 yards, 2 TD; 4-6, 65 yards, 1 TD
Jones: 31 carries, 201 yards, 2 TD

Richmond - 13
VANDY - 23

*If the Commodores were in the...Big 12 for example, they would be an annual contender. That's not the case and HC Bobby Johnson has to appreciate every win he gets.

Nickson: 18-31, 193 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT; 22 carries, 90 yards, 1 TD
Garrison: 20 carries, 85 yards

La. Lafayette - 10
S. CAROLINA - 31

*The Gamecocks defense (with 10 starters back) is just too good. Sure QB Blake Mitchell isn't around for this one, but that doesn't matter. An easy win to start the year for Steve Spurrier.

Boyd: 30 carries, 152 yards, 3 TD

W. Carolina - 7
ALABAMA - 51

*Nick Saban's offense is still trying to click - YEAH RIGHT!!!!

Wilson: 20-34, 243 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
Grant: 18 carries, 134 yards, 2 TD
Johns: 14 carries, 102 yards, 1 TD

KANSAS ST. - 21
Auburn - 20

UPSET SPECIAL #2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*This is the story of an upstart program knocking off - what I like to call a "slow fader." The Auburn Tigers did beat the national champion Florida Gators last year on their way to a 11-2 season, but with only 5 starters back on offense - including just ONE offensive lineman, this one smells like an upset to me! Auburn QB Brandon Cox is one of the most overrated QB's in the country and he shows it in this one. On the other side, QB Josh Freeman is ready to become a household name. Expect a last-second field goal to determine this one as Ron Prince gets his 2nd cornerstone victory (KSU beat Texas in '06).

Freeman: 20-35, 240 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Johnson: 17 carries, 86 yards, 1 TD
Patton: 21 carries, 93 yards
Nelson: 6 catches, 100 yards, 1 TD

Cox: 17-32, 155 yards, 1 TD 3 INT
Tate: 22 carries, 86 yards, 1 TD
Fannin: 11 carries, 104 yards

Tennessee - 30
CALIFORNIA - 31

*The heavyweight match of week 1 lives up to the hype!!!! QB Nate Longshore adds his name to the long Heisman list with a sparkling performance in the second half. The Vol secondary does a great job containing WR DeSean Jackson until he breaks loose for the game-winner. Cal becomes a legit national title contender after this clash of the titans.

*Longshore: 34-45, 338 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
*Forsett: 27 carries, 152 yards, 1 TD
*Jackson: 5 catches, 140 yards, 1 TD

*Ainge: 26-41, 283 yards, 2 TD, 2 INT
*Foster: 18 carries, 86 yards, 1 TD
*Taylor: 7 catches, 120 yards, 1 TD


SUN BELT CONFERENCE:

Tulsa - 23
LA. MONROE - 24

UPSET SPECIAL #5!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*Bad start for new HC Todd Graham. Sure QB Paul Smith and RB Courtney Tennail are back, so are all ELEVEN offensive starter for ULM!!! The Warhawks ended '06 winners in three of their last four...the momentum carries over to Thursday night at home.

Lancaster: 14-24, 166 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT; 8 carries, 83 yards, 1 TD
Dawson: 21 carries, 137 yards, 1 TD
Sapp: 4 catches, 90 yards

Smith: 24-41, 241 yards, 2 TD, 3 INT; 10 carries, 49 yards
Tennial: 18 carries, 77 yards

Florida International - 3
PENN STATE - 41

*PSU fans better NOT be dismissing rivals OSU and Michigan for playing Championship Subdivision programs to open the season because FIU went 0-12 in '06!!! The Golden Panthers did have a top 30 defensive unit - nationally - last year, but lose five of their top six tacklers. New head coach Mario Cristobal is bringing in a spread offense but will have a new starting quarterback running the system with experienced tailbacks that couldn't reach the 500 yard mark individually in '06. The Nittany Lions, meanwhile, think they have a national championship caliber team. It's hard to argue when you consider the returning talent on offense. QB Anthony Morelli has all FOUR of his top targets back and should help develope WR Derrick Williams into a household name this season. Sr. RB Austin Scott is fresh off a redshirt season and will FINALLY live up to the hype for Joe Paterno...that is, if he stays out of his doghouse.

Morelli: 25-35, 255 yds, 3 TD, 1 INT
Scott: 20 carries, 115 yds, 1 TD
Williams: 8 catches, 133 yds, 2 TD

Younger: 11-27, 108 yds, 0 TD, 2 INT
McCall: 5-15, 33 yds, 0 TD, 1 INT
Ned: 23 carries, 70 yds

M. Tennessee St. - 13
FLORIDA ATLANTIC - 17

Arkansas St. - 14
TEXAS - 58

*Tough way to open up for ASU. They travel to Austin to face the Horns, then face a VASTLY improved Memphis squad (who they beat last year), an SMU club that spanked them in '06 (55-9) and Tennessee in KNOXVILLE!!! 0-4 is a realistic future for HC Steve Roberts. As for Texas, they'll be without star wideout Billy Pittman (shoulder), but Quan Cosby and Limas Sweed will pick up the slack and smack the ASU secondary into week two.

McCoy: 32-40, 390 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT: 7 carries, 48 yards, 1 TD
Charles: 30 carries, 206 yards, 3 TD
Sweed: 9 catches, 205 yards, 2 TD

Leonard: 14-29, 152 yards, 1 TD; 14 carries, 30 yards
Arnold: 25 carries, 78 yards, 1 TD

North Texas - 14
OKLAHOMA - 48

*Knowing Bob Stoops, he's going to walk away upset with his defense for giving the Mean Green 14 points. NTU does have Jamario Thomas, who many of you remember as the guy that led the nation in rushing as a freshman back in '04. He's been a bit of a disapointment since but should play well his senior season. Expect Jamario to have a decent game against OU. As for the Sooners, QB Sam Bradford will look like a seasoned vet after this season opening laugher.

Bradford: 16-21, 227 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT; 10 carries, 77 yards, 1 TD
Murray: 21 carries, 108 yards, 1 TD
Patrick: 15 carries, 120 yards

Meager: 11-26, 96 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT
Thomas: 37 carries, 116 yards, 2 TD

Troy - 6
ARKANSAS - 41

*The post-Mitch Mustian-era begins on a high note. The funny part about Arkansas is - who cares who plays QB? With McFadden and Jones, you don't need one.

McFadden: 27 carries, 184 yards, 2 TD; 4-6, 65 yards, 1 TD
Jones: 31 carries, 201 yards, 2 TD

La. Lafayette - 10
S. CAROLINA - 31

*The Gamecocks defense (with 10 starters back) is just too good. Sure QB Blake Mitchell isn't around for this one, but that doesn't matter. An easy win to start the year for Steve Spurrier.

Boyd: 30 carries, 152 yards, 3 TD

WESTERN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE:

SE Louisiana St. - 14
NEW MEXICO ST. - 31

Weber State - 0
BOISE STATE - 41

*It will be a celebration of record proportions in Boise as the Broncos pick up where they left off!

Sacremento St. - 17
FRESNO STATE - 52

*FSU needs to forget an awful '06.

C. Arkansas - 21
LA. TECH - 31

Nevada - 10
NEBRASKA - 45

*STATEMENT!!! The Cornhuskers are a LEGIT national title contender. Bill Callahan went the junior college rout to replace six defensive starters and will upgrade at the RB and QB positions with new starters there as well. QB Sam Keller becomes an instant hit in Lincoln running the west coast offense to perfection against a Nevada secondary that's breaking in a new corner and safety - to go along with a new defensive coordinator in Ken Wilson (he was LB coach last year). The Huskers won't even miss their #1 wideout Maurice Purify (who's suspended one game) as Keller crushes the Pack.

Keller: 35-52, 425 yards, 5 TD, 1 INT
Lucky: 20 carries, 154 yards, 1 TD
Nunn: 12 catches, 205 yards, 3 TD

Graziano: 21-40, 201 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT; 12 carries, 30 yards
Lippincott: 20 carries, 51 yards

San Jose St. - 24
ARIZONA ST. - 42

*I really like San Jose State's team. The Spartans are going to give the the WAC all it can handle this year with QB Adam Tafralis and RB Yonus Davis. Unfortunately for SJSU, there's too much buzz surrounding the Sun Devils with new HC Dennis Erickson. QB Rudy Carpenter gets off to a great start and shows the nation that he may have more weapons than any QB in the Pac Ten.

Carpenter: 28-43, 314 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT
Herring: 10 carries, 109 yards, 2 TD
Torain: 21 carries, 95 yards

Idaho - 0
USC - 49

*The Trojans don't punt the ball the entire game.

Booty: 35-48, 370 yards, 5 TD, 0 INT
Turner: 9 catches, 175 yards, 2 TD

UNLV - 27
Utah St. - 17

*Rocky Hinds is an enigma. A highly touted quarterback who left USC for UNLV. He obviously wanted to play and it's been tough - thanks to injuries. After so much hype that his offseason ACL surgery went well - healing process has been brutal and Hinds will miss even MORE time. In steps redshirt freshman Travis Dixon, who doesn't screw up...and that's all HC Mike Sanford can ask. A win is a win for the frustrated Rebels.

Dixon: 13-23, 190 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Summers: 30 carries, 162 yards, 2 TD
Wolfe: 4 catches, 90 yards, 1 TD

Jackson: 14-37, 120 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT; 11 carries, 72 yards, 1 TD

Posted by Amsinger at 03:40 PM on August 28, 2007
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