Tigers, Tide Hornets will win, Troy lose

Published 6:06 pm Tuesday, September 7, 2010

First week down for college football and what did we learn? Bama looks like world beaters, Auburn looks like world beaters (on offense), Troy’s defense is a bit shaky too, and Alabama State can deliver a whipping.

So. We learned absolutely nothing.

The thing about college football is that you have to really see how a team progresses from week to week before you can determine how good it’s going to be. This week, the tests get a bit harder.

Last week’s record: 12-2 (It would’ve been perfect had not North Carolina been playing with half a football team and Jacksonville State not punked Ole Miss in Oxford…which was extremely funny).

Penn State at Alabama (ESPN, 6 p.m.): The Nittany Lions and its freshman quarterback looked quite impressive last week against Youngstown State. At least the second half. Now Robert Bolden and the Lions are headed into the Lions Den in Tuscaloosa. Headline of a Philadelphia Inquirer story this week was “Bama, unlike Youngstown, will test Penn State,” which I found odd because it almost makes the assumption that Penn State is actually going to beat the Crimson Tide. At least a few more days they can dream that.

Alabama 35, Penn State 10

Auburn at Mississippi State (Thur., ESPN, 6:30 p.m.): This sets up to be an interesting match-up because everyone’s talking about the offenses for both teams. The Bulldogs absolutely rolled through Memphis while, over on the Plains, Cameron Newton was drawing comparisons to Donovan McNabb/Vince Young/Daunte Culpepper, etc. as he proceeded to carve up Arkansas State’s defense like last year’s Thanksgiving turkey. The question mark coming in is Auburn’s defense which looked exactly the same as last year’s defense (you know, back when there was no depth and only two linebackers). We’ll find out more about both teams after Thursday night, but Newton gives AU the edge.

Auburn 28, Mississippi State 21

Troy at Oklahoma State (6 p.m.): Okie State running back Kendall Hunter ran for 256 yards in a season-opening win over Washington State 65-17. Troy was able to salvage a 30-27 victory over Bowling Green with a last-season field goal. The Trojans’ defense is also a shadow of itself from last season, surrendering nearly five yards per play.

Oklahoma State 42, Troy 20

Arkansas Pine-Bluff at Alabama State: Hornets quarterback Devin Dominguez certainly looked the part of a field general on Saturday, passing for 261 yards in ASU’s win over Mississippi Valley State. Dominguez and the Hornets get another one this week.

Alabama State 30, A-PB 14

Other picks: Arkansas over La.-Monroe; Florida over USF; Kentucky over W. Kentucky; LSU over Vanderbilt; South Carolina over Georgia; Oregon over Tennessee; Ole Miss over Tulane.