You sweated through Thursday night as Penn State narrowly escaped with a week one victory. Now your reward is a few days of stress-free football.
As a reminder, games that kick off at the same time as Penn State are rarely, if ever, included, as well as any Big Ten games, since they are covered the the weekly Big Ten Preview and Degenerates post.
Additionally, if Georgia is included in this list I will use it as an excuse to usez an image of UGA and his many wrinkles and jowels.
Sam Houston State at (#6) Texas A&M
Texas A&M seems to struggle in earlier games on the schedule, especially when there are expectations heading into the season. Sam Houston State is a dangerous FCS opponent who could keep it interesting for four quarters. This is one of those games you keep on in the background early on, then settle in if it’s close heading into halftime.
Prediction: Texas A&M-38, Sam Houston State-28
North Carolina at Appalachian State
App State has pulled off (or nearly pulled off) some startling week one upsets away from home. Now they have a chance to do it yet again, but this time at home. There’s just something about App State in week one. The Tar Heels better come in ready for a battle.
Prediction: UNC-37, App State-34
(#11)Oregon at (#3)Georgia
3:30 p.m., ABC
We get to enjoy this afternoon treat thanks to the top 5 match-up of Ohio State and Notre Dame claiming the prime time slot. The Bulldogs begin their national title defense with a difficult match-up. Just a year ago the Ducks marched into Columbus and controlled the Buckeyes from start to finish. Can they do the same in Athens? Georgia is replacing a lot of talent, but has plenty more four and five-star players waiting in the wings.
Prediction: Georgia-28, Oregon-20
(#23)Cinncinati at (#19)Arkansas
3:30 p.m., ESPN
This is a crucial game off the bat for both programs, who are hoping to keep the momentum following very successful seasons in 2021. The Bearcats made history, becoming the first Non-5 program to earn a playoff berth. Meanwhile, Arkansas stunned the SEC with a 9-win season that included several upsets. This should be a physical, hard-fought battle to settle into for the afternoon.
Prediction: Arkansas-28, Cinncinati-24
(#7)Utah at Florida
7 p.m., ESPN
The Utes are a trendy pick to go undefeated and nab a playoff spot. But first, they have to survive a trip to The Swamp in the first game of the Billy Napier era for Florida. It will be no small task, especially if Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson takes a step forward following an uneven performance in 2022.
Prediction: Utah-24, Florida-21
Kent State at Washington
10:30 p.m., FS1
This game could be much better than you would imagine at first glance. The Huskies are in rebuilding mode, while Kent State has a wildly-prolific offense that can give the Washington defense fits. The Flashes defense, on the other hand, isn’t quite fond of tackling people. There just might be a late-night upset brewing that makes it worthwhile to stay up until 2 a.m.
Prediction: Kent State-45, Washington-42
Florida State at LSU (Sunday)
7:30 p.m., ABC
Both of these programs are looking to bounce back, making it a crucial week one game as both need to get off to a strong start. I can’t recall a time in my years as a college football fan where I cheered for Florida State. Thanks to Brian Kelly being on the opposite sidelines, there is a first time for everything. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Go Noles!
Prediction: LSU-24, Florida State-20