Week 2 did not see as many high key match ups as the first week of the season. In reality only the OU-Ohio State and Clemson-Auburn game lived up to any type of hype. More so for the Clemson-Auburn game.
There is another big game coach in Norman as Lincoln Riley took his Oklahoma Sooners into the Big Show of Ohio State and ran away with the game. The first half so both defenses bend not break as the teams were locked 3-3 going into the half. The second half was all Oklahoma as they would build a 31-13 lead before the final score became 31-16 on a late field goal by Ohio State. There has been a lot of talk about Baker Mayfield planting the OU flag at the 50 yard line in the middle of the block O. I do not have an issue with it as it was after the game and the Ohio State players were off the field. For Mayfield it was retribution for the embarrassing loss last year at home followed by the Ohio State players singing their fight song on the field. Do not count out Ohio State. The year they won the National Championship they were blown out at home by an unranked Virginia Tech team. If they improve on their passing game they will still compete for the Big Ten championship.
The second marquee game was Clemson against Auburn. I did not watch hardly any of this game, but it was a great defensive battle as Clemson lead at the break 7-6 and won the game 14-6. While this was not a make or break game for either team, but Auburn has to be concerned with their passing game. If they do not improve it by SEC play they will lose some games before the Alabama game and any chance at the playoffs will be a pipe dream at best.
Playoff Team 1
Alabama had an easy game against Fresno State and they won as they should have. I can remember a time when teams did not want to play Fresno because Fresno always came to play. Those days are long gone.
Playoff Team 2
Clemson did what they needed to in their win against Auburn. However, this is not the same offense as the last couple of years. You could attribute it to the fact that it was the second week of the season and they were going up against an SEC defense. However, there are still questions about their offense they need to answer before they get into ACC play.
Playoff Team 3
If you were not impressed with the way Oklahoma manhandled Ohio State in the second half you either were not paying attention or do not like the Sooners in which case nothing they ever do will impress you. They served notice that they are back this year. There are several games this year that could still trip up the Sooners: Oklahoma State, Texas, and Kansas State. If their defense can stay at the level it's played in the first two weeks they should be fine.
Playoff Team 4
For the record I do not see any conference getting two teams into the playoffs that is why I did not have Penn State in the playoff picture last week. Ohio State's loss is their gain and Washington's loss as well. Penn State looks to be the most complete team in the Big Ten. Michigan has struggled coming out of the gate two weeks in a row against inferior teams. They can not do this in the Big Ten and hope to win the conference. Welcome back to national prominence Penn State. It's been too long.
With Oklahoma's win against Ohio State and their graduation into the playoff picture one would think that would leave Oklahoma State as my lone dark horse. Not so fast, my friend. USC has suddenly crept into the conversation after their dismantling of Stanford this past weekend. The last couple of years Stanford had absolutely taken USC to the woodshed and forced USC out of the national picture. Oklahoma State still controls it's own destiny as it may have two games against Oklahoma this year. USC really does not control it's own destiny (outside of winning). They could win the Pac-12 championship and still be on the outside looking in.
Best of Week 2
Yesterday, for the most part was a dull day for football. Most teams were matched up against far inferior teams. I have already talked about the OU-OhSU and Clem-Aub games. But there was one game that looked to be a blow up only to see the game go to triple overtime. Brought to us by Pac-12 after dark, the Washington State-Boise State game did not wrap up until almost 2 am with Washington State picking up the win. At one point that Wahoos were down to the Broncs by 21 (31-10) but two offensive TDs and a pick 6 after a very unadvised throw by back up Bronc QB and the game went to overtime. The teams split field goals in the first OT (it took Washington State close to 20 minutes to kick their field goal as they took a delay of game penalty to give their kicker a better angle, followed by a TO from Boise State to ice the kicker, followed by another delay of game that was declined by Boise State). The traded TDs in the second OT. Boise State kicked a field goal on their possession of the 3rd OT but Washington State got a TD to win the game.
Worst of Week 2
Arkansas and Nebraska, woof.
Arkansas looked absolutely atrocious in their game against TCU. They scored one TD in the first quarter and that was it for the rest of the game. The defense looked decent through three quarters but by the 4th they were gassed and TCU was able to pick up three TDS for the final score of 28-7. This was a sell-out crown in Fayetteville but you could have fooled me. As the Arkansas offense struggled to get going. The crown lost all energy. Arkansas fans expect more out of their Hogs (whether deserved or not) and this game was just flat out ugly. If Arkansas does not fix it's offensive struggles AND FIND A KICKER THAT CAN HIT PEDESTRIAN FIELD GOALS they will struggle to finish .500 this season.
Nebraska went into the half trailing 42-14. This is not the blackshirt defense that I used to be accustomed to. The first half in this game was simply ugly for Nebraska for both sides of the ball. The second half looked much more like the Nebraska team people expect. The blackshirts kept Oregon off the board completely in the second half and offense came alive scoring 21 unanswered points. Unfortunately they needed at least 29 points to complete the come back and win. Nebraska can not have cold and hot games like their first two games and expect to win 9 games this season or even compete for the Big Ten championship.
Uh, Baylor, you still need to win the games you are supposed to win.
I understand Baylor is a hot mess right and is trying to rebuild after they were decimated (of their own doing) by the rampant rape allegations that were covered up, but holy cow they should at the very least have a competitive team. Their first two games were against Liberty (a non bowl division and relatively new football team coached by former Nebraska great Turner Gill) and UT-San Antonio. These should have been two easy wins. Instead Baylor lost both games. With their next game at Duke (a team that just blew out Northwestern), there is legitimate possibility that Baylor goes winless this year.
Most intriguing games of Week 3
This week's top match-up; Florida State-Miami has already been postponed due to Hurricane Irma
Texas at USC
What makes this game intriguing is in which Texas team shows up in LA. Will it be the Week 1 team that lost by 10 to a team they should have beaten with ease? Or the Week 2 team that did what they were supposed to against a far inferior team. No matter which Texas team shows up in LA expect USC to absolutely blow them out of the water.
Oklahoma State at Pitt
Pitt did not look great against Penn State this year but last year they gave Okie State a scare at home. This year the game is in Pittsburgh. I am not sure that Pitt will be able to stay with Oklahoma State but this should be a good showcase for the Pokies.
Clemson at Louisville
Clemson opens their conference play against Louisville. This should be an offensive battle that goes down to the wire. A Clemson win keeps them on track for the season. A win by Louisville and they suddenly become the class of the ACC and a dark horse for the playoff.