By Casey Keefe
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#2 USC (1-0) vs Syracuse (0-1) – 3:30 p.m. (MetLife Stadium)
I know Syracuse likes to market themselves as “New York’s team” and there are a lot of Orange fans in the area—but this one will be U-G-L-Y. Syracuse has absolutely no chance to beat the Trojans. Quarterback Matt Barkley will have a field day against a Syracuse defense that couldn’t stop a nosebleed against a mediocre Northwestern offense last week at the Carrier Dome. Receivers Marqise Lee and Robert Woods will run free in the Orange secondary all day long. If you want to see pure domination on Saturday—this is your game… Prediction: USC
Washington (1-0) @ #3 LSU (1-0) – 7 p.m.
The Huskies are a solid team led by a darn good quarterback in Keith Price. Unfortunately I don’t see Price having a whole lot of time in the pocket tomorrow evening. Washington’s offensive line is brutal, and LSU has the best defensive line in the nation. The Tigers will be coming after Price early and often. Expect him to force a few passes that turn into picks. I’m not thrilled with LSU’s offense, but they surely won’t have to do too much damage against the Huskies—their defense will take care of that… Prediction: LSU
#7 Georgia (1-0) @ Missouri (1-0) – 7:45 p.m.
Missouri makes their SEC debut tomorrow evening when they welcome in Georgia to Columbia. This is one of the better matchups of the weekend and on paper looks like a close game. Georgia is the stronger team but you have to factor in Missouri’s advantage of being at home in primetime and how pumped they and their crowd will be playing in their first SEC game. In the end, I like the Bulldogs for two reasons: 1. Quarterback Aaron Murray, and 2. Head Coach Mark Richt—give me that duo any day of the week: Prediction: Georgia
#13 Wisconsin (1-0) @ Oregon State (0-0) – 4 p.m.
The Badgers got quite a wakeup call after their 26-21 squeaker against Northern Iowa last Saturday. It’s not always the worst thing to have such a performance in your opening game, especially when you’re a top team facing such an inferior opponent. Rest assured, Wisconsin ate a nice big piece of humble pie and will be ready to go with an extra chip on their shoulder tomorrow afternoon. Expect their non-conference winning streak to reach 34 on the arm of quarterback Danny O’Brien and a refocused defense… Prediction: Wisconsin
#16 Nebraska (1-0) @ UCLA (1-0) – 7:30 p.m.
In reality, UCLA shouldn’t be able to hang with Nebraska tomorrow night. But you have an interesting storyline in this game. ‘Husker quarterback Taylor Martinez who I have never been a fan of is returning home to face the team he grew up rooting for and had dreamt of playing for. Martinez is the king of mental mistakes so I’ll be interested to see if he tries to push himself too hard and maybe tries to do too much—especially with star running back Rex Burkhead banged up with a knee injury. If Martinez can play within himself and finally show some signs of maturity, the ‘Huskers should be alright… Prediction: Nebraska
#18 Oklahoma State (1-0) @ Arizona (1-0) – 10:30 p.m.: The Weeden-Blackmon era might be over but the Cowboys proved last week the offense is still pretty damn explosive. They might not drop 84 points on the Wildcats—but they’ll certainly put up enough… Prediction: Oklahoma State
Miami (1-0) @ #21 Kansas State (1-0) – 12 p.m.: The Hurricanes are outmatched on both sides of the ball. Expect quarterback Collin Klein to propel the Wildcats to a big win… Prediction: Kansas State
#24 Florida (1-0) @ Texas A&M (0-0) – 3:30 p.m.: The Aggies will use the momentum from the 12th Man to help top a very flawed Gators team in what is A&M’s first SEC game… Prediction: Texas A&M
Penn State (0-1) @ Virginia (1-0) – 12 p.m.: The long nightmare will continue for the Nittany Lions as they run into a superior Cavaliers team on the road. PSU is just simply no good… Prediction: Virginia
NC State (0-1) @ Connecticut (1-0) – 12 p.m.: The Husky defense is the real deal and Chandler Whitmer is UConn’s best quarterback since Dan Orlovsky… Prediction: Connecticut
Follow Casey on Twitter @CaseyKeefeWFAN
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