The price you pay for a great Week 1 college football slate can sometimes be a… let’s call it “meager” Week 2. If you played a great helmet game or a season-opening conference game in Week 1, then typically schedule an in-state FCS or opponent to help buffer Week 2. Georgia, Oregon, Ohio State, Utah and LSU are doing just that (just to name a few). But there are still matchups worth watching in the second week of college football.
All times ET. Watch college football with fuboTV – start a free trial today.
Alabama (-20) vs. Texas
Quarterback Quinn Ewers gets his first real test when the Crimson Tide arrives in Austin. Alabama held its own against reigning Mountain West champion Utah State, winning 55-0 midway through the third quarter. Nick Saban’s unbeaten streak against assistant coaches came to an end last season, but is it time for a new streak to begin against Steve Sarkisian’s Longhorns?
Wake Forest (-13) vs. Vanderbilt
This matchup got some extra juice this week when Wake quarterback Sam Hartman announced his return from a blood clot problem he suffered during training camp. The oddsmakers took notice, moving Wake from a 6-point favorite in the opening to as low as -14.5 in some books. But this might not be your dad’s Vanderbilt, as the only 2-0 team in the SEC comes into this game with spoiler intent. Quarterback Mike Wright seems like an early bet for one of the most electric quarterbacks in the SEC.
South Carolina vs. Arkansas (-8)
Experienced Spencer Rattler faces his first SEC test as the Gamecocks head to Fayetteville. Arkansas showed in its Week 1 victory over Cincinnati that it is still as salty as it has been in recent years under Sam Pittman with a gutsy victory over the Bearcats. But he didn’t face the level of quarterback that Rattler can bring to the table. South Carolina was, by its own admission, slow on a season-opening win, but coaches often say the biggest improvement comes between Weeks 1 and 2.
Appalachian State vs. Texas A&M (-19)
The Aggies seemed a bit off the pace offensively in their admittedly dominant win over Sam Houston State, but App State racked up points in a hurry, including their 40-point in the fourth quarter in a comeback attempt against North Carolina. A&M certainly poses a tougher test on defense than the Heels, but this game should be fun if the Mountaineers bring some of the firepower they showed opening the season.
State of Iowa vs. Iowa (-3.5), 4 p.m.
Iowa’s 7-3 win did its best to leave a bad taste in the mouths of just about everyone watching besides Iowa’s defensive coaching staff. Two safeties and a field goal were all the Hawkeyes could muster and with a student section reportedly chanting for the offensive coordinator to be fired during the season opener, a win over the in-state rival Cyclones would go a long way toward putting negative energy to bed. Fortunately, Kirk Ferentz’s Hawks are 6-0 against Matt Campbell and Iowa State.
Houston vs. Texas Tech (-3.5), 4 p.m.
The Cougars pulled off an overtime squeaker over UTSA to start the season and stay in state to face first-year coach Joey McGuire’s Red Raiders. A win here would be a huge boost in Year 1 as he tries to get the show headed in the right direction.
Watch college football with fuboTV – start a free trial today.
USC (-8.5) vs. Stanford, 7:30 p.m.
USC crossed over and used two defensive scores en route to the season-opening blowout of Rice. That’s the key to moving forward: Going into the season, everyone expected USC’s offense to be fine, but the other side of the ball also needed to help Caleb Williams. That mission was accomplished through a single game, and now an early conference tilt against the Cardinal is turning heads. Stanford has been a shell of its 2010s success the past two years and will try to use an early-season upset to restore that glory.
Kentucky vs. Florida (-6), 7:00 p.m.
The Gators won a close game over Utah to open the season and now turn their attention to a Kentucky team that outclassed them last year in Lexington. Quarterback Will Levis is one of the early favorites in the NFL draft, but with problems in the running back and offensive line, we’ll see how much he can help the rest of an ever-changing team around him. Fellow QB prospect Anthony Richardson brings in the explosive plays at spades for the UK defense to try and coral.
State of Arizona vs. Oklahoma State (-11), 7:30 p.m.
The Poke went back to the way business is supposed to be done. Last season focused on defense and running game, and Week 1 proved that an explosive passing offense can still win in Stillwater. Arizona State brings new QB Emory Jones to town to try out the Cowboys.
Baylor vs. BYU (-3), 10:15 p.m.
Buckle up for this game, where both teams seem happy to put in the effort. Expect Baylor’s stifling defense to give the Cougars all they can handle, but don’t count BYU out. The Cougars showed they can outplay an opponent with a dominant Week 1 victory over USF.