Hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, Alex Smith throwing for over 300 yards. There are a whole slew of horrible and insane things happening all at once.
And yet, the college football season rolls on. Sort of.
With Hurricane Irma bearing down, almost all of the Florida schools have punted away this weekend.
FIU is playing at Alcorn State in Birmingham, while Lane Kiffin – the ultimate survivor – and his Florida Atlantic team will get to hang out in Madison as long as they need to.
Florida State, though, has cancelled its date with ULM, Florida isn’t facing Northern Colorado, and the American Athletic Conference will need to figure something out with the UCF vs. Memphis and UConn vs. South Florida games cancelled.
And then there’s Miami, who could’ve gone to Arkansas State to play, but chose not to.
With everything going on, the weekend won’t be boring.
So to pass the time, here’s what’s going to happen on a college football Saturday that should be far better than last week’s relative dud.
This is all just for spits, giggles, and entertainment purposes only, however, just in case you dabble …
You know how the weeknight playbook goes. South Alabama will give Oklahoma State a difficult time for a while, and then the team with the talent, speed, and NFL quarterback will decide to start playing, and that will be that. The Cowboys will open it up in the second half. Don’t worry. | Oklahoma State vs. USA Preview
Purdue is trying to suck us all in. We all know what happened against Louisville. We all know that the Big Ten team is supposed to beat the MAC team with ease. However, Ohio might be the best team in the MAC – it’s just not explosive.
Whatever you do, don’t listen to me on this. For the game previews and picks, I always make the call without looking at the line. I said it’ll be Purdue by three, and the line is either -3 or 3.5 depending on what you like. Just take the Big Ten team. | Purdue vs. Ohio Preview
Lost in the Josh Rosen fun was how much UCLA sucked for three quarters. Be careful of Hawaii here. The Rainbow Warrior D is suspect, but the O can surprisingly run the ball. 23.5 might be a bit high. | UCLA vs. Hawaii Preview
I’m going to will this pick to happen. Despite the OT scare vs. Rhode Island, I really and truly believe Central Michigan is good, and I really and truly believe Kansas is Kansas. The line is moving way up in the Jayhawks’ favor – CMU will win outright. | Kansas vs. CMU Preview
Oregon still doesn’t seem like it has a defense. Be scared by Nebraska almost getting tagged by Arkansas State, but also be scared that it could hang up massive points on this porous Duck D. I know 70 is a big number, but these two offenses will hit it.
Oregon’s a lot better now, but it’s worth taking a flier on the idea that it isn’t. 13.5 could be way high against a Nebraska team that could win this outright, but won’t. | Oregon vs. Nebraska Preview
Wisconsin might run for 500 yards on Florida Atlantic, and then the Owls will kick around Madison for a while. C’mon, social media, do your thing. Lane Kiffin + State Street = Trending | Wisconsin vs. FAU Preview
Stay away from Buffalo vs. Army. Yeah, the Black Knights ran wild over Fordham, but UB has a D. That performance against Minnesota wasn’t a fluke – the Bulls can stop then run. | Army vs. Buffalo Preview
Apparently, Michigan State has a dog with a limp. It made a deal with Western Michigan head coach Tim Hiller to give it a few snaps at quarterback in the third quarter.
Michigan State just might be back to being pretty good. Not B1G title great – pretty good. More than a TD vs. WMU pretty good. | Michigan State vs. WMU Preview
I got burned last week by believing Eastern Michigan was going back to being Eastern Michigan – the Eagles destroyed Charlotte. So take this with 12 grains of salt. Rutgers is going to win easily. Really, really easily. | Rutgers vs. EMU Preview
The problem with UMass is that it doesn’t win. It’s fun, it has an offense this year, but it just doesn’t know how to score more points than the other team. The Minutemen lost to Coastal Carolina. Old Dominion giving up just 3.5 is fantastic on principle alone.
There’s no backing off Northwestern now. It should’ve blown away Nevada by much more, and it’s going to make you sweat vs. Duke. If you believe the Cats will win, the three doesn’t scare you. Don’t be scared. Clayton Thorson will be there for you. | Northwestern vs. Duke Preview
Look, James Madison is real deal good, so don’t get too into East Carolina losing to the No. 1 FCS team by 20. Even so, ECU lost to an FCS team by 20, and West Virginia is only favored by 24? With gravy, please. | ECU vs. West Virginia Preview
Loved, loved, LOVED Michigan vs. Florida, but 34 against Cincinnati? Against a Luke Fickell defense? The problem is that the Bearcats might not score. I hate the 34, I hate unders, I hate this game for a variety of reasons. Again, though, I don’t know how UC generates any points. | Michigan vs. Cincinnati Preview
If you have Louisville and/or North Carolina figured out after the way each played in Week One, you’re a far better person than I am. We already know you’re a snappier dresser, but if you’re sure you have this right, bless your heart.
You want to give UNC ten points at home? Mmmmkay. Cal and UNC just combined for 65 points, and you’re saying Lamar Jackson vs. UNC will combine for just 62? Double mmmmkay. | Louisville vs. UNC Preview
Charlotte struggled to score seven points vs. Eastern Michigan and you’re pausing on the 35 Kansas State is giving up? Don’t be weird. | Charlotte vs. Kansas State
Even if it’s a rivalry game, and even if Iowa State has improved, and even if it’s in Ames, and even if strange things have happened in this series, and even if Iowa still doesn’t have a sure-thing passing game, for the love of all that is right and just, Iowa -3?! Even if it doesn’t work, it’s the right call. | Iowa vs. Iowa State Preview
Wake Forest might actually be good, and Boston College’s new offensive style isn’t going all of a sudden start working on this Demon Deacon D. It’s a PICK – that could be stealing, as could the 44 point under. | Wake Forest vs. BC Preview
The New Mexico -7 over NMSU line falls into the We Can’t Really Figure It Out So We’ll Go With A TD Line category. Too scary, too rivalry-ey, too many issues. too much tinkering. But when in doubt, take the better team by more than a touchdown.
Rice vs. UTEP? Haven’t the people of Texas suffered enough? UTEP -1.5 might look like it was way too easy a call after the fact.
If Colorado decides to play with the same attitude and intensity it showed against Colorado State, the 35.5 against Texas State won’t be a problem. However, TXST QB Damian Williams is good enough to screw everything up. | Colorado vs. Texas State Preview
Don’t get sucked into the UAB love. Ball State will win at home, and win way too easily.
The 76 point over/under in Syracuse vs. Middle Tennessee might look insanely low after the fact. The Blue Raiders did nothing against Vanderbilt, but this could turn into one of those insane Syracuse 72-60 firefights. | Syracuse vs. MT Preview
Well aware that I’m wrong, I’m still not there on Penn State yet. It’ll beat Pitt in a revenge battle, but three touchdowns are a whole lot to give away to a team with this offense. | Penn State vs. Pitt Preview
Navy vs. Tulane over/under is set at 47? I’m actually insulted by this. The Midshipmen could get that all by themselves.
I thought I was being quirky by picking WKU to beat Illinois, but the Hilltoppers are giving away 7.5 on the road? The Fighting Illini will cover, if not win outright. | WKU vs. Illinois Preview
No, UTSA hasn’t played yet. Yes, Baylor lost to Liberty. No, we don’t know what kind of UTSA team will show up. Yes, Baylor’s running backs all seem to be hurt. No, Baylor won’t win by more than 17 – if it wins. Put this in the Don’t Be Shocked If pile. | Baylor vs. UTSA Preview
Tom Herman, you had better beat San Jose State by four touchdowns. And no excuses if and when you don’t. The pieces are there, and you’re getting paid millions to put them together. | Texas vs. SJSU Preview
Arkansas looked strong in Week 1, but there’s no backing down now. TCU is about to show that it’s really, really good. It might not be 2014 good, but Kenny Hill is about to make the Horned Frogs a player. | TCU vs. Arkansas Preview
I’m picking NC State to beat Marshall by more than 24 mainly because I’m still not exactly sure how NC State lost to South Carolina. The Herd offense won’t move a lick. | NC State vs. Marshall Preview
SEC types – mainly Russ Mitchell – consider it insane to think Missouri will beat South Carolina, but …
South Carolina and USF combined for 85 in last year’s Birmingham Bowl, and I’m well aware of the Missouri State game, sir, but going over on a 71 for a Will Muschamp team will always feel way high.
Yeah, they rolled against FCS teams, but SMU put 58 up on the board last week, and North Texas cranked out 59. These two kids shouldn’t have any problems rolling by the 64.5 posted.
Don’t like Clemson because of what it did against Kent State. Like Clemson because it will probably do that against just about everyone else, too. I’m starting to believe more and more that the ACC Tigers are about to beat the SEC version with some pizzazz. I picked it to be close and won’t change the first answer, but a large part of me is thinking the Clemson D is about to put on a display of power. | Clemson vs. Auburn Preview
Head down, drive through it, come out on the other side clean. I’m in, Notre Dame. I’m in that this offense is the real deal, I’m in that Brandon Wimbush is the answer, and I’m in that the Fighting Irish will win a thriller over Georgia. | Notre Dame vs. Georgia Preview
Just because I’m picking Mississippi State to win relatively easily over Louisiana Tech doesn’t mean I have to like it. I hate banking on the idea that the Bulldogs – the SEC version – might have a defense now. | MSU vs. LT Preview
I’ll be really curious to see where the late money comes in on Oklahoma vs. Ohio State. That 7.5 seems like a lot for a Sooner team that might just be better.
This has to be the Baker Mayfield Heisman moment. Anything less, and the Sooners probably don’t have a shot as long as Ohio State ramps up the intensity from the start. I’m not all that sure the Sooners can stop what the Buckeyes are going to do with their offensive diversity and depth. | Oklahoma vs. Ohio State Preview
If Western Michigan could run on USC, what do you think a rested Stanford will come up with? I know this is bad, but I’ve talked myself into believing Stanford is about to pound on the Trojans. Now I’d be more shocked if the Cardinal didn’t win. | Stanford vs. USC Preview
It doesn’t make any sense, and there might not be any rationale for it after the Howard debacle, but UNLV is getting a touchdown against Idaho. The Rebels won’t need it.
I don’t care if I’m flaming wrong, and I don’t care if this is a brutal blowout the other way – Minnesota should be at least a three-point favorite vs. Oregon State, and it’s not. The Beavers are favored by 2.5? Oops. | Minnesota vs. Oregon State
San Diego State can throw. San Diego State can run, San Diego State can crank up the tough defense when it absolutely has to, even in a rebuilding mode. Arizona State can only sort of do one of those things. | SDSU vs. Arizona State Preview
Rivalries are supposed to count for something. But if you’ve watched the two games BYU played so far, you’d realize how crazy it is that Utah is only a 2.5 point favorite. This Cougar offensive problem thing might be real – BYU won’t run the ball a lick. | Utah vs. BYU Preview
Two ways to look at Boise State vs. Washington State. Either Boise State needs to revamp a bit if it really is double-digit worse to Wazzu, and/or two, if Wazzu wins by double-digits over the Broncos, look out Pac-12. Unlike last year, the Cougars will come out on the right side of a thriller. | Boise State vs. Washington State Preview
And Finally …
The most interesting team in the world over the next several weeks?
Beyond having to deal with all the problems around home, and despite not getting a Week One warm-up, Ed Oliver and the run defense might just pitch a gem.
Considering the Wildcats don’t have a defense yet, watch out for the Cougar O line, and then think 2016 Louisville game in terms of swarming form the Houston D. The bar is now set at Houston winning games like this. The bar is now set at Major Applewhite winning games like this.