Predicting Future Upsets for 2012 College Football Season
It never fails. Each and every college football season features many upsets that leave everybody scratching their head when the game is over.
We have already experienced a few major upsets such as Louisiana-Monroe over Arkansas, UCLA over Nebraska and Oregon State over Wisconsin. And with this season really just getting started, we know it is only a matter of time before we see a few more ranked teams fall to underdogs.
Which team is going to be next? Well, it is hard to predict, which is why upsets are considered upsets in the first place, because nobody expected it.
I'm no psychic or anything, but here are a few upsets that could take place over the rest of the 2012 college football season.
Clemson over Florida State—Week 4
Doesn't it happen every year with Florida State? We build the Seminoles up into some national championship contender and they always let us down. This year, Florida State has yet to beat anyone that can remotely be considered a good football team, but are considered a Top Five team in the AP Poll.
Clemson managed to win last year’s meeting, while Florida State was considered a top team in the country. Okay, maybe Florida State was playing with a backup quarterback and the game took place in Clemson, but the Tigers will get wide receiver Sammy Watkins back from suspension and have the confidence of already beating a solid Auburn team in Week 1.
You may like the defense of the Seminoles a lot, but I don't like the idea of this team choking each and every season.
Washington over Stanford—Week 5
I think it is fair to say that this year’s Stanford team is not the same without Andrew Luck. And while the quarterback issue is a major question mark, this team is struggling to run the football, pressure the opposing quarterback and just about everything in between.
I think we have yet to see the best of Washington, as the offense has yet to click. But the defense has improved since last season and quarterback Keith Price remains one of the better players at his position in the Pac-12.
With this game taking place in Seattle, I'll go with the team that is led by an experienced quarterback over the team that has a first-year starter.
California over UCLA—Week 6
Can we pump the breaks on the whole UCLA thing for a minute? I get that they beat Nebraska last week and the recruiting has drastically improved under first-year head coach Jim L. Mora, but let's not get ahead of ourselves here.
Both squads are horrible defensively and California has enough offensive weapons to counter the recently high-scoring Bruins team.
Senior quarterback Zach Maynard may be playing his best football recently, completing 64 percent of his passes. Running back Isi Sofele is a former 1,000-yard rusher, who is averaging over five yards a touch this year. And then, of course, there is Keenan Allen, who many consider to be the best wide receiver in the country as far as NFL potential is concerned.
Did I mention that this game is being played in California Memorial Stadium, a place where UCLA has not won since 1998?
Vanderbilt over Florida—Week 7
Yes, you read this correctly. Vanderbilt has lost a total of 21 straight games to the Florida Gators, but that will change this season.
I see the same struggling Florida team from a year ago with a great defense, but an offense that struggles mightily to move the football. The quarterback play is beyond terrible, as the running game is the only reason the offense averages 17.5 first downs a contest.
If you saw the opening game when South Carolina traveled to Vanderbilt, the Gamecocks barely survived, as this is a tough Commodores team that seems to be getting better under head coach James Franklin. Last year, Florida won the game by only five points. With this contest taking place in Nashville, I expect to see Vanderbilt finish the job.
Texas A&M over LSU—Week 8
Now that these two teams are in the same division, this rivalry that dates back to 1903 will be rekindled. Although they have only played once since 1995, the Aggies have won five of the last six meetings.
Of course, things have changed with LSU over the years, as they are now national championship contenders. But Texas A&M sure held its own against a talented Florida Gators team, and could have easily won the game.
The Aggies have many questions on the offensive side of the ball; however, that defense is the real deal. The unit led the country in sacks last season, and seems to be off to a great start this year, picking up eight sacks in the season opener.
This may shock many, but you combine a feisty team with an environment such as College Station, and you have yourself a recipe for an upset.
Syracuse over Louisville—Week 11
Regardless of who wins this game, it should be worth watching as four of the last five meetings have been decided by single digits. And while Louisville may be the ranked team, Syracuse has played solid football the last two weeks, despite starting the season off with an 0-2 record.
Syracuse actually has the best offense in the Big East, averaging over 520 yards of total offense, and the defense did a terrific job against an offensive powerhouse in USC during Week 2. The Orange could have easily won the game against Northwestern, while they certainly had their chances against the Trojans.
Taking a trip to the Carrier Dome is never easy, which I believe will result in a quiet Big East upset.
West Virginia over Oklahoma—Week 12
This game may decide who ends up winning the Big 12, and considering I picked West Virginia, I have to stick with this prediction.
Oklahoma has not looked good to begin the season, with the offensive line allowing six sacks in the first two games and the defense allowing UTEP to run for over 200 yards on the ground. West Virginia on the other hand, has one of the most explosive offenses in the country, where even the best defenses are going to experience problems.
The Sooners have yet to click on either side of the ball, and with this game being played in Morgantown, I don't see the Mountaineers losing.
Michigan over Ohio State—Week 13
Everybody is claiming that Ohio State is back, but the Buckeyes have yet to beat any top-notch competition yet. The offensive line has been shaky at best, the team is averaging over six penalties a game and the defense has already allowed four plays over 40 yards.
Michigan looked terrible against Alabama, but it was the Crimson Tide we are talking about. The Wolverines should have better success moving the ball against the Buckeyes' defense, and quarterback Braxton Miller should have a hard time throwing against a veteran secondary.
The Wolverines' offense was able to produce over 400 yards of total offense in their victory last season. With this being the last regular season game for quarterback Denard Robinson, you can bet he would like to go out on top with a victory over the Buckeyes.