4-Down Territory: Texas-Tiger 2-Step, Buckeye's 1st Test, Week 2 Must-Wins & Football 150 Re
Week one in college football is fool’s gold. Season-opening routs mean more fan bases believe their team is suddenly a playoff contender. Scientifically it is a ridiculously small sample size against inferior competition. Week two gets far more interesting.
1st Down: Hello Old Friend: Cincinnati at #5 Ohio State....This may be the best under the radar game of the weekend. Cincinnati Head Coach Luke Fickell played for Ohio State and coached 15 years at Ohio State (including serving as interim Head Coach in 2011). His Cincinnati team is coming off an 11-2 season and a win over UCLA to start this season. Cincinnati's veteran QB Desmond Ridder will try to test Ohio State’s defense. New Ohio State QB Justin Fields should expect Cincinnati’s defense to force him to prove he can make complicated reads and consistently throw the ball accurately—something FAU’s defense did not do last week.
2nd Down: Texas-Tiger 2-Step Part 1: #12 Texas A&M at #1 Clemson...Although freshman QB Trevor Lawrence threw his first college pass for a TD in last year's A&M game, Clemson’s leading passer and rusher that night was…..QB Kelly Bryant. While many assume Clemson will roll, this Texas A&M team knows they could've (and should've) won last year's game. A&M QB Kellen Mond threw for 430 yards and 3 TDs and was a two-point conversion away from sending the game to overtime. If he can play at that same level he may be the x-factor in an early season upset. The Aggies have spoken confidently this week but can they walk the talk in Death Valley?
Third Down: Texas-Tiger 2-Step Part 2: #6 LSU at #9 Texas....This is a battle of playoff contenders. LSU's new offense and a 55-3 pounding of Georgia Southern had a confident QB Joe Burrows stating: “We’ve definitely come out of the stone age.” Going to Austin will be a bigger test against a speedy defense that will present multiple looks. The Texas offense has a number of RBs out for this game, increasing the pressure on QB Sam Ehlinger. But last year he was at his best in the biggest games. In 4 games against Top 15 teams Ehlinger completed 68% of his passes and averaged 296.5 yards passing, 57.5 rushing and 354 yards total offense per game. He accounted for 13 TDs passing and running and had just 1 interception. If he matches that performance Texas should be lighting the Tower Orange.
Fourth Down: The Best of The Rest: #21 Syracuse at Maryland: Was the 79 point Maryland outburst against Howard a mirage? Don’t expect Syracuse to yield as easily. But Maryland has posted September ambushes the past two seasons against ranked teams. Maryland pulled those upsets thanks to turnovers which were a problem for Syracuse last week in a 24-0 win at Liberty…..#24 Nebraska at Colorado: Nebraska Coach Scott Frost's rough start in Lincoln last year included a close loss to Colorado. As the Huskers try to re-establish the tradition of the stout "Blackshirt" defenses this is a critical game against an old Big 8/Big 12 rival. Colorado took care of Colorado State last week and looks to test the rebuilding Husker defense which ranked 12th in the Big Ten in points allowed, total defense and run defense in 2018. The first “Frost” advisory in the Front Range of Colorado comes in early September….Miami at UNC: This may be as close to a must-win for Miami as it gets. UNC comes in with the confidence gained by upsetting SEC foe South Carolina last week. If UNC can avoid the Miami turnover chain Mack Brown could be dancing again….BYU at Tennessee: Talking about must-wins, this looks like a must-get on Rocky Top. With big games ahead against Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi State and Kentucky starting 0-2 could put bowl eligibility in jeopardy for the Vols…..#23 Stanford at USC: USC QB JT Daniels is done for the year. The fate of the Trojans' season is in the hands of freshmen QB Kedon Slovis whose first career starts begin with #23 Stanford and then at BYU, #13 Utah, at #14 Washington and at #8 Notre Dame.
College Football 150 Relic: This week we feature an old record album celebrating Texas Football and Darrell Royal’s decade of success from 1960-69. In that span the Longhorns won 2 national titles. In the early 1970s before highlight tapes, VCRs, DVDs and YouTube this was how you commemorated your team’s success. This one was narrated by ABC's Chris Schenkel and still sounds great on the home turntable. Below are pictures of the album's cover art and booklet.