On a rather lackluster weekend of college football games, one Top 25 ACC match-up will take center stage.
The ACC takes center stage in Week Three as the league highlights some of Saturday’s biggest game. None bigger than the Top 25 match-up between Miami and Louisville. The Hurricanes are 10-3-1 all time against the Cardinals, including a 52-27 win last year. This showdown of ranked teams also features a showdown of very talented dual threat quarterbacks with D’Eriq King and Malik Cunningham. King was a little disappointing in his first game with his new team last week, while Cunningham broke out with a career day throwing the ball. This game within the game of quarterback play will be the thing to watch in primetime tomorrow night.
A couple of ACC teams get their 2020 seasons started with in-conference games. Boston College and NC State are two teams that had disappointing seasons last year, featured underperforming offenses and abysmal defenses. There are a lot of question marks surrounding these teams, especially Boston College now that the Adazio tenure is over and the Jeff Hafley ear begins. North Carolina State is still missing that key piece at the quarterback position, which is concerning considering State is known for producing great quarterbacks. If they can find that next Phillip Rivers, things will seem much brighter in Raleigh.
While the ACC owns the slate for this week’s schedule, the best game of the week might just feature a Sun Belt team and a C-USA team. #23 Appalachian State hits the road to take on the Thundering Herd of Marshall. With the SEC not starting until next week, and a number of games postponing this week due to Covid concerns, CBS decided to pick this game up in their 3:30 time slot. I believe they got a steal. These two teams feature explosive offenses in what should be a back and forth, high scoring affair. These two programs know each other very well, as this used be a huge Southern Conference rivalry back in the 80s and 90s. App leads the all time series, but it’s Marshall that has held the bragging rights for the last 18 years, a 50-17 win back in 2002.
In the Big 12, Kansas, Kansas State and Iowa State are all glad to have the week off after all three lost at home to Sun Belt schools last week. Week 2 was not a good week for the Big 12. Oklahoma State and Baylor, two teams with high expectations for 2020 get their seasons started. The Cowboys open up at home against Tulsa, while Baylor added this game against Houston THIS WEEK, after Houston’s game with Memphis was postponed.
While the schedule in Week Two is not what we are normally used to and features mostly rather lackluster games, there are still a few games to keep an eye on and watch that might just be really good games. This weeks also marks the one week mark to the start of SEC football. While the weekly schedule is not great right now, once next week rolls around and the SEC gets up and going (as well as the Big 10 come the end of October) each week will packed with block buster games.
Week 3 Predictions
John and I picked all of the same teams in our Week 2 picks, going 7-3 last week. We’ve done the same thing this week as well. I’m going to have to wait at least another week to try to catch John in our season records
Here are just a few of the games on the slate this week to watch and our predictions.
Navy @ Tulane (-6.5) – Noon – ABC
The last time we saw the Midshipmen, they were getting smacked around by BYU. After having the week off, I really hope that Navy decided to practice tackling after giving up nearly 600 yards of offense to the Cougars. The team they are facing squeaked out a win a week ago against South Alabama. The Green Wave had to dig themselves out of a big hole late in order to pull out the win. Tulane features a very balanced offensive attack that could cause problems for this Navy defense. The Midshipmen will also need to find a way to actually move the ball on offense, as they were shut down by BYU. I really want to go with Navy, but I’m very concerned after that opening blowout loss.
John – Tulane
Cameron – Tulane
Boston College @ Duke (-6) – Noon – ESPN 3
This is really an intriguing match-up and may just be one of the more underrated games this week. We get our first glance at Boston College this year who now feature a new head coach in Jeff Hafley. Boston College had a really weird and disappointing season last year going 6-7. It was a year that featured some impressive wins combined with head scratching losses. We don’t know a lot about this Eagles team coming into the year. A lot of question marks to answer, especially on offense. For Duke, the Blue Devils had a decent game last week in South Bend. Chace Brice at quarterback definitely gives this Duke offense an added boost, however, he is going to need someone around him to step up and make some big plays. If the Blue Devils can get Deon Jackson going in the running game, that will help Brice open up the passing game a bit more. The Duke defense played well for a half last week, but I wonder if it was more of offensive ineffectiveness by Notre Dame than it was the performance by the Duke defense. I don’t necessarily like this pick, but John and I are going with the Blue Devils, mainly because of the question marks surrounding Boston College.
John – Duke
Cameron – Duke
Wake Forest @ NC State (-1.5) – 8:00 PM – ACCN
Wake Forest is coming off a season opening loss to the #1 team in the country, as Clemson ripped apart the Demon Deacons. However, even in the blowout loss, Wake Forest was able to do some nice things offensively, especially later in the game. With time, QB Sam Hartman will be a big factor for this Deacon team and he’s got a receiver in Taylor Morin that I can definitely see playing on Sundays. The Demon Deacons will need to find a little more balance on offense, granted the test they faced last week will probably be the best team they will play all year. I truly believe Wake will continue to get better as the year moves forward. For NC State, the Wolfpack are coming off an abysmal 4-8 season in 2019. John and I talked last night on the show about the lack of quarterback play for State, which is something that you can normally count on in Raleigh. The Wolfpack are going to need to find their next Rivers, Wilson or Finley. Much like Boston College, we don’t know a lot about this Wolfpack team. I’m honestly surprised that they are considered a slight favorite. I honestly feel like Wake is the better team. I’ll take the Deacs by at least one score.
John – Wake Forest
Cameron – Wake Forest
#23 App State (-4.5) @ Marshall – 3:30 PM – CBS
Moutaineers and Thundering Herd. Two former Southern Conference rivals meet once again. App State started their 2020 campaign with a rather disappointing win last week at home versus Charlotte. The weather definitely played a factor and that might have had something to do with QB Zac Thomas’ mediocre performance. The running game got going late in the game for the Mountaineers. The offense will need to bring their “A” game this week as they are going to face off against an equally explosive offense. Marshall pounded Eastern Kentucky two weeks ago 59-0. Freshman quarterback Grant Wells made a big statement in his first ever collegiate game. I expect an offensive shootout, and Vegas is expecting the same thing as the over/under for this game is 59.5. App is a slight favorite, and while Marshall played better in their opener than App did, I do think App is the more talented team overall. This may just be the best game all day, a potential back and forth type game. I’m predicting that App wins with a walk-off field goal at the end of regulation.
John – App State
Cameron – App State
#17 Miami @ #18 Louisville (-2.5) – 7:30 PM – ABC
The last time these two teams faced off, back in November of last year, Miami ran Louisville off the field, winning 52-27. Coming in to the game this year, both teams are 1-0, but won their opening games in rather different ways. The Canes struggled early against UAB. QB D’Eriq King’s first game as a Hurricane was rather unimpressive. The passing game was off, but fortunately for Miami, Camron Harris and the running game showed up and carried the Canes to a Week 2 victory. Louisville, however, threw the ball all over the place against Western Kentucky last week. Malik Cunningham ended the game throwing for 343 yards and three touchdowns. The match-up I’m really looking forward to is the explosive Cardinal offense going up against this Miami defense. Louisville comes in as nearly a field goal favorite and I believe the Cardinals avenge their shellacking from a year ago with a nice Top 25 win at home.
John – Louisville
Cameron – Louisville
You can find out all of our Week 3 predictions by going over to the podcast page and listening to last night’s episode. Be sure to like us on Facebook and Twitter. You can also listen to each episode live by downloading the Podbean app on your tablet or smartphone.