Of course, Week One is always the time big schools beat on little schools (unless you're Michigan). Still, I want to touch on some of the key games in Week One. I don't see many upsets. But, again, who thought Appalachian State would beat Michigan, in Michigan?
North Carolina State at South Carolina
Everyone talks about having their turn-around season. I feel the winner of this game will turn it around and the other will be thinking about its turn-around season next year. I see SC winning this game because of big defensive stops. SC has a good defense. Even with Mike Glennon, the talented quarterback out of Westfield High school, more than likely starting, the Wolf Pack do not have much of anything else.
—South Carolina 24, NC State 13
Hawaii at Florida
Redemption? After a blowout at the hands of Georgia, you'd think they'd have learned. So let's scrimmage the second-best team in the land. Hopefully, Florida doesn't run the score.
—Florida 52, Hawaii 6
Utah at Michigan
Upset last year by App. State, Michigan is tired of hearing about it. The Wolverines will beat Utah. I'm sure it will be closer than it'd be with a normal championship-caliber Michigan team, but only because of the new coach and young players.
Do not celebrate this victory long, though, Michigan fans. Notre Dame awaits two games later in Indy, and then there are home games vs. Wisconsin and Illinois.
—Michigan 28, Utah 10
Alabama at Clemson
Why do you say this game is important? Nobody thinks that 'Bama can win. Alabama fans do not count. The Tigers are good at one thing: running the ball. 'Bama has some good linebackers. They are going to bring six or seven, and maybe eight, every time. Who's starting at quarterback for Clemson. Cullen Harper? His O-line allowed 32 sacks last year (cough, cough). Bring the heat.
I do not think it will be a blowout because James Davis and CJ Spiller are good and find ways to score, plus a likely touchdown from wide receiver Aaron Kelly, but not enough to take out Nick Saban and The Tide.
—Bama 27, Clemson 24
Illinois at Mizzou
This will probably be the second-most-watched game, second to 'Bama and Clemson. Two-time Heisman hopeful Chase Daniels looks to roll past Mizzouri's defeats from Oklahoma twice. Mizzou will not be in the position it was in last year. I see it being an upset because of the leadership of Illinois quarterback Juice Williams. He helped them beat OSU last year, so look forward to the upset vs. Mizzou.
—Illinois 31, Mizzou 21
Tennessee at UCLA
Looking to get revenge on UCLA from its 45-31 loss to the Golden Bears last year, Tennessee looks good. Everyone keeps downing the Volunteers. They are not as good as they say. Well, think about this, they play play in the SEC, which is the toughest conference in college football.
Let's break it down: They went 10-4 last year, with loses to Cal, Florida, 'Bama, and LSU, three of which are in the SEC, two of which are the past champs. Keys wins, though, for Tenn were against Georgia, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Wisconsin. Wisconsin was the Vols' bowl-game opponent, and Kentucky and Arkansas both beat the national champs.
Tenn will not slide though this game. UCLA can beat them, but if Tenn plays its game it will win.
—Tennessee 38, UCLA 17
Other key games to watch:
Michigan State at California
JMU at Duke (JMU can beat Duke)
Wake Forest at Baylor