"Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel"

My new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" is the follow-up to "Illegal Procedure" and "Roughing the Passer" and is now available in print and in e-formats at amazon.com, smashwords.com and iBooks. Follow me on twitter @kevinkrest.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

NCAA FOOTBALL RECAP AND PREDICTIONS

Don't forget to check out my new E-book, "Illegal Procedure - A PK Frazier Novel", now available in all E-book formats.

Week 2 Recap:

Last week: 16 - 5. Season: 31- 11

Once again, the SEC did me in, costing me two of the five games that I missed. However, it was good to see the Miami Hurricanes give the ACC a quality win, although we'll see how big a win that is as the season progresses. I'm still not sold on the Gators, especially in that tough SEC. And although I gave the BYU Cougars a chance, I didn't think Texas would lay a defensive egg.  And then there's what happened to USC, scoring just seven points in a crippling loss to Wahington St., one that clearly puts coach Lane Kiffen on the hot seat.

(13) Oklahoma St. 35 UTSA 10:  Correct.  56 - 35

(12) Florida 24 at Miami, FL 20: Missed this one. Florida just couldn't convert in the red zone.  16 - 21

Eastern Kentucky 13 at (8) Louisville 34: Correct.  7 - 44

Tennessee Tech  7 at (21) Wisconsin 34: Correct.  0 - 48
SE Louisiana 13 at (21) TCU  31: Correct.  17 - 38
S. Car. St. 6 (4) Clemson 41: Correct. 13 - 52
(2) Oregon 35 at Virginia 14: Correct. 59 - 10
San Diego St. 7 at (3) Ohio St. 44: Correct.  7 - 42
Buffalo 24 at (23) Baylor 38: Correct.  13 - 70
(6) South Carolina 27 at (11) Georgia 24:  It was a terrific game, I just failed to predict the correct winner. It will be difficult now for the national champion to come out of the SEC East. 30 - 41
Syracuse  20 at (19) Northwestern  28: Correct.  27 - 48
Southern Mississippi  24 at (22) Nebraska 30: Correct.   13 - 56
West Virginia  10 at (16) Oklahoma 37: Correct. 7 - 16
(15) Texas  27 at BYU 21:  Maybe Texas coach Mack Brown and USC coach Lane Kiffen can get a hot seat for two...  21 - 40
Sam Houston St. 34 at (7) Texas A&M 54:  Correct.  28 - 65
UAB 13 @ (9) LSU 38: Correct.  17 - 56
(14) Notre Dame 24 at (17) Michigan 31: Correct. 30 - 41
Washington St. 21 at  (25) USC 30: Trouble in Tinseltown, big time.  10 - 7
San Jose St. 27 at (5) Stanford 24: I either overestimated San Jose's offense or underestimated Stanford's defense, or maybe a little of both.  13 - 34
Samford 6 at Arkansas  41 (in Little Rock): Correct.  21 - 31
Western Carolina 6 at Virginia Tech 20: Correct.  3 - 45
This Week:
(24) TCU 24 at Texas Tech 21: TCU is without their starting QB for s few weeks, but I think they'll still have enough to hold off the Red Raiders.
Akron 13 at (11) Michigan 38: I really like Michigan, which is probably bad news for the Wolverines. Seriously, though, I think they're a bit underrated and may be able to challenge Ohio St. for the Big Ten crown.
(5) Stanford  31 at Army 10: I'm not making the same mistake with Stanford this week. Even though Stanford is having to travel East and play at 9:00 am PDT, they have way too much for Army.
(16) UCLA 34 at (23) Nebraska 31: The Bruins defeated the Cornhuskers last year, but that game was in Los Angeles. This one will be in Lincoln, with another West Coast team having to play at 9:00 am PDT. After a sluggish start to the season, Nebraska found their offense against Southern Miss in a 56 - 13 win. UCLA put up 58 against Nevada, so this is a pretty compelling matchup. I'm going with the Bruins in another close one.
(7) Louisville 45 at Kentucky 14:  This would make a great basketball matchup, but Kentucky got drilled in week 1 by Bobby Petrino's FCS Western Kentucky while Louisville is on a roll. It's going to take Mark Stoops, the new coach at Kentucky a while to do one of two things: 1) Make the Wildcats competitive, or 2) Give up after three years and go back to coaching defense at a real football school.
Tulsa 10 at (14) Oklahoma 27: The Sooners seem to have something no Big 12 team has exhibited in a while, and that's a real defense. Unfortunately, they haven't shown much on offense, but they should be able to handle cross state rival Tulsa, who aren't nearly as strong as they have been in recent years.
Nevada  7 at (10) Florida St. 51: So let's see what we have in this one. Nevada is going east to play in Tallahassee, Florida at 3:30 in the afternoon in oppressing heat and humidity. They were beaten last week by UCLA, 58 - 20. The 'Noles'  Jameis Winston is coming off an incredible debut against Pittsburgh on the road. At some point Florida State will probably stub its toe, but not in this one.
Tennessee 17 at (2) Oregon 49:  The Vols have run over two FCS schools, rolling up 97 points for new coach Butch Jones, partly because Western Kentucky committed five turnovers in a six play span. So if an FCS school can turn the ball over six times and still put up 20 on Tennessee in Knoxville, what's Oregon going to do at home to the Vols?
(1) Alabama 28 at (6) Texas A&M 27: This is the one we've been waiting for since last year's upset by the Aggies and Johnnie Football's coming out party in Tuscaloosa. Alabama's offense was stifled by Virginia Tech in a 35 - 10 victory, relying instead on defense and special teams. A&M shredded the Crimson Tide a season ago, but I'm pretty sure Nick Saban has an answer for the now sophomore sensation. I think Alabama will prevail, but this should be one of the most entertaining games of the season.
(19) Washington 30 at Illinois 28: I really like Washington's resurgence, but Illinois is going through a similar process. This is a big test for the Huskies, especially since they'll be going east to Champaign.  Washington should still prevail, but it'll be closer than most people think.
(4) Ohio St.  38 at California 21: I'm not totally sold yet on Ohio State. They beat Buffalo 40 -20, then the Bulls got trounced by Baylor, giving up 70 points in the process. San Diego State is really bad, so a 42 - 7 win by the Buckeyes wasn't all that great. Cal isn't going to win this one, but I'm interested to see how Ohio State plays on the road.
Kent St. 10 at (8) LSU 41: Kent St. isn't all that good and they have to go into Death Valley on a September Saturday night. Heat, humidity, noise and a very good Tiger team will all serve to make this one a laugher.
Vanderbilt 24 at (13) South Carolina 34: The Gamecocks are coming off a disappointing loss to Georgia. Otherwise, I may have given thought to picking the Commodores in an upset. South Carolina has talent and should prevail.
Lamar 13 at (12) Oklahoma State 35: Lamar beat someone called Panhandle State 75 - 0 in their first game. Panhandle State? Really? Anyway, the Cowboys have had a distracting week, but they'll have plenty of firepower on both sides of the ball to easily win this one.
(25) Mississippi 31 at Texas 27: This is really not the game the Longhorns wanted to have following a crushing loss to BYU. The Rebels are on the rise and Texas is reeling, so much that Mack Brown fired his defensive coordinator during the week. Wow, talk about a little intrigue in Austin. The truth is that Texas hasn't been the same since defensive coordinator Will Muschamp left to coach Florida. This may signal the beginning of the end for Mack Brown.
(21) Notre Dame 38 at Purdue 17: This game should be a good one for the Irish to be able to rebound after a tough loss to Michigan. Purdue is a bottom feeder in the Big Ten, and despite this being a rivalry game, Notre Dame is much better than the Boilermakers.
Western Michigan 17 at (17) Northwestern  40: I'm not impressed with Northwestern's defense and this game won't tell me anything about that. Western Michigan really can't compete with the big-time programs this season, already losing to a mediocre Michigan State team by the score of 26 - 13.  Add a loss to Nicholls and it comes out to an easy win for the Wildcats.
(20) Wisconsin 27 at Arizona St. 30: In a combined three games against inferior competition, and I use that term loosely, neither of these teams has given up a point. Now they both have to play a real, quality FBS team. The Badgers will have to deal with the desert heat in Tempe. The Sun Devils will have to deal with the size and talent of Wisconsin. I'm going to pick the upset here and go with a program on the rise.
Virginia Tech 27 at East Carolina 17: In the past, this has been a nightmare for the Hokies. It's  tough to say where Tech is in terms of bouncing back from last year's disappointing  7 - 6 season. East Carolina has had early season success, but FCS Old Dominion and Florida Atlantic from Conference USA are clearly not the caliber of competition that the Hokies will present on Saturday. The Hokies' defense looks close to being impenetrable and the Pirates have put up a lot of points. It's the Tech offense that's the question mark here. I'll stick with my team and sweat it out while sitting in the stadium for the Arkansas - Southern Mississippi game.
Southern Mississippi  14 at Arkansas 37: The Razorbacks dodged a bullet Saturday in Little Rock by coming back to defeat FCS Samford. They jumped out to a big lead and then seemed to ease up a little bit. Knowing coach Bret Bielema's style, it'll probably be the last time that happens. Southern Mississippi should be dominated both offensively and defensively as the Hogs continue to make progress.
Georgia Tech 30 at Duke 24: This game should be a good gauge of how far the Blue Devils have come in upgrading their football program. Georgia Tech is really tough to defend and I don't think Duke will be able to handle it.
Mississippi St. 27 at Auburn 31: Auburn's win against Washington St. looks a lot better now that the Cougars upset USC last week. I liked Mississippi State to begin the season, but I have to go with Gus Malzahn's Tigers to put up more points.