College Football Underdogs with a Strong Upset Chance in Week 2
The second week of college football is upon us, and we are coming off of a relatively drama-free Week 1. If there's anything that all college football fans love, it's the underdogs.
Granted, although there was a lack of outstanding matchups throughout the country in the first week, there are some better matchups this Saturday. Let's take a look at three possible games where we could see an underdog steal the win in Week 2.
#12 Florida Gators at Miami Hurricanes
Coming into this game, the Florida Gators are a 3-point favorite to win. However, most people expect Miami to at least give the Gators a run for their money.
The quarterbacking in this showdown is sure to be nothing short of spectacular. Returning senior quarterback Stephen Morris for Miami has an explosive offense with an interesting makeup. There is no one superstar in the Hurricane receiving corps, but rather a few very talented ones.
The Gators, meanwhile, are coming off of a slight struggle with Toledo. Though the box score doesn't really reflect a struggle, 24 points is a mediocre performance against a (no offense to the MAC) smaller school.
If Florida wants to beat Miami, they are going to need quarterback Jeff Driskel to step up and be a leader. I don't see it happening. If they struggled against a MAC team at home, they will definitely struggle against an ACC team on the road.
Prediction: Miami (FL) 27, Florida 14
Washington State at #25 USC
Let's be honest, the only thing the USC Trojans have going for them right now is wide receiver Marquis Lee. The junior pulled in eight catches for 104 yards last week in a 30-13 victory over Hawai'i, and even that isn't exactly "impressive."
A two-quarterback situation rarely works, and if last week is any indication, head coach Lane Kiffin's decision to go with both Cody Kessler and Max Wittek won't end the way he hopes. Both threw for less than 100 yards, and only Kessler threw for a touchdown. Rich Hammond, USC's beat writer for the Orange Country Register, says indications are that Kiffin will go with both again this weekend:
Cody Kessler said he and Max Wittek “know we’re both going to play” against Wash. St. No starting QB publicly named.— Rich Hammond (@RegisterUSC) September 4, 2013
The Trojans also struggled to score last week vs. Hawai'i, with only one touchdown both in the air and on the ground.
Though they are a 16-point favorite this weekend, if Washington State quarterback Connor Halliday can contain his passes, as well as get some help from the ground game, I see an upset coming in SoCal.
Prediction: Washington State 17, USC 14
#14 Notre Dame at #17 Michigan
A rivalry coming to an end. Following this year, there will only be one more scheduled meeting between the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Michigan Wolverines. What does it mean to this game?
Realistically, nothing. Nobody on those sidelines is going to be thinking about how this is the last game in the Big House for these two teams. Notre Dame is ranked higher, but Michigan is the favorite to win. So who's the underdog in this situation?
Given the three-point spread, plus it being a road game in one of the most feared stadiums in the country, it has to be the Fighting Irish.
The difference in this game will be the quarterbacks. Neither team has an outstanding defense, and both offensive packages are very similar. The quarterbacks, however, are two completely different stories.
Tommy Rees, Notre Dame's starting quarterback (seen in the video talking about his matchup vs. Michigan), is a player who was used a lot early on in his career, but with the emergence of now-suspended quarterback Everett Golson saw a lot of bench time.
Michigan quarterback Devin Gardner, on the other hand, had a lot of bench time behind quarterback Denard Robinson until last year, when he finally saw some action under center.
I see Tommy Rees' experience, along with the Fighting Irish's depth in their receiving corps, being the key to a Notre Dame victory, just as it was last year.
Prediction: Notre Dame 34, Michigan 28
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