Georgia nips Gamecocks on a late field goal

 We went 9-1 the first week because we thought Virginia Tech would take care of Boise, which the Hokies almost did. But now it starts to get interesting with perhaps the best slate of second-week games that I’ve ever seen. So let’s get on with the Fearless Friday Forecast. Feel free to disagree with any picks, but if you do disagree, tell me WHY I’m wrong:

1. Georgia at South Carolina: Both teams looked very impressive in their openers (against bad teams) last week and the winner of this one gets an early lead in what appears to be a wide open SEC East. Georgia will welcome the return of running back Washaun Ealey but not wide receiver A.J. Green, who has been suspended for four games. The key here will be Georgia’s ability to run the ball effectively and take a wild crowd at Williams-Brice Stadium out of the game. This is the first SEC road game for Georgia QB Aaron Murray. You don’t want to ask him to do too much. I think Georgia will run the ball effectively and get a late field goal from Blair Walsh to win. Georgia 17, South Carolina 14.

2. Georgia Tech at Kansas: Kansas, under first-year coach Turner Gill, really stumbled out of the gate last week losing to North Dakota State 6-3. For the Jayhawks that 2007 trip to the Orange Bowl must seem like a million years ago. Georgia Tech is only going to get better as the offensive line continues to jell and Al Groh’s defense grows more confident. On what is a big weekend for the ACC, the Jackets do their part with win a road game against the Big 12. Georgia Tech 35, Kansas 10.

3. Florida State at Oklahoma: For a team that is ranked in everybody’s Top 10, Oklahoma sure did struggle last week in barely getting by Utah State. The Sooners are better than that with quarterback Landry Jones and a 1,000-yard rusher in DeMarco Murray. Florida State was impressive in its opener against Samford, but I’m afraid new defensive coordinator Mark Stoops, brother of Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops, doesn’t have the athletes to win a game like this on the road. Oklahoma 28, Florida State 17.

4. Miami at Ohio State: Brady Ackerman, my broadcast partner at CSS, tells me the Hurricanes have the right stuff to go up to the Horseshoe and win this game. Miami does have a bunch of good looking athletes and when quarterback Jacory Harris is playing well, the ‘Canes are tough to beat. But I just can’t see Miami going on the road and winning in such a tough atmosphere. So I’m going with the Buckeyes. But I’m not going to be shocked if Miami finds a way to win. Ohio State 17, Miami 14.

5. Penn State at Alabama: The Crimson Tide will be without two of its best players, running back Mark Ingram on offense and end Marcell Dareus on defense. Normally, that would mean trouble when you’re playing Penn State anywhere. But Penn State has a true freshman at quarterback, Robert Bolden, who looked pretty good last week in his debut at home against Youngstown State. But young Mr. Bolden will find out that playing in front of 101,000 of your fans is a lot different than playing in front of 101,000 of theirs. Alabama 24, Penn State 14.

6. South Florida at Florida: Florida beat Miami of Ohio last week but it sure didn’t feel like a win for the fans in The Swamp. That’s because the Gators had a grand total of 25 yards of total offense after three quarters. And did we mention that they bobbled the center-quarterback exchange 13 times? With a trip to Tennessee coming up next week there is a lot that needs to get fixed at Florida. Saturday begins that process. Florida 35, South Florida 10.

7. Oregon at Tennessee: The Ducks, who return 17 starters from a Rose Bowl team, were supposed to take something of a dip after losing quarterback Jeremiah Masoli. But even without their best offensive player, running back LaMichael James (suspension), Oregon was unstoppable against New Mexcio, winning 72-0. This is where Tennessee’s personnel gaps really begin to show. Tennessee fights hard at home but Oregon has too many athletes. Oregon 24, Tennessee 10.

8. Michigan at Notre Dame: Quarterback Denard Robinson gave Michigan fans reason to hope for a better season and coach Rich Rodriguez hope that he could keep his job when the Wolverines beat UConn last week. Notre Dame had a pedestrian win over Purdue in Brian Kelly’s debut as head coach. I just get the sense that Kelly saved a little something special for Michigan. This guy can coach. Notre Dame 24, Michigan 20.

9. LSU at Vanderbilt: Les Miles and the boys were very fortunate that they didn’t get beat by an undermanned North Carolina team at the Georgia Dome last Saturday. I saw a couple of things that really concerned me about LSU: No.1, they still can’t run the football effectively. No. 2, the defense of John Chavis is not as athletic as I thought it was going to be (aside from All-World cornerback Patrick Peterson). Still the Tigers go to 1-0 in the SEC. LSU 31, Vanderbilt 13.

10. Ole Miss at Tulane: It’s a little early in the season to have “must wins” but after losing to Division I-AA Jacksonville State last week, Ole Miss has to shake off the rust and blow Tulane out of the Superdome. Last week was a very strange one for Ole Miss, which began the week thinking quarterback Jeremiah Masoli would not be eligible and by Friday he was. The Rebels right the ship in New Orleans. Ole Miss 42, Tulane 14.

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Programming note: I’ll be in Birmingham for today’s “Barnhart and Durham Show” (10 a.m., 790 The Zone). Among our guests will be Paul Finebaum of the Paul Finebaum Radio Network. Please join us.

536 comments Add your comment

nelson

September 10th, 2010
8:58 am

That is the best weekend slate of games I have ever seen. Those predictions are absolutewly perfect. I am going to bet that they are all perfect. Except Miami-Ohio State, Miami will win that one, and Penn State- Alabama, Alabam will lose, and i am not sure about Georgia-S Carolina, Carolina by 2, Notre Dame-Michigan, Michigan by 1, Georgia will lose to Kansas State by 7. Tulane will win and S Florida over Florida U.
That is it your picks are fannnnnnnnnnntastic.

George Stein

September 10th, 2010
9:01 am

Tech should cruise tomorrow. UGA will beat South Carolina because they always do.

I believe FSU will defeat Oklahoma, Miami will defeat OSU, Michigan will defeat ND, Bama is going to pound Penn St., and Oregon will throttle Tennessee.

GT Fan ...

September 10th, 2010
9:02 am

Homer-Tony … Obviously you had no choice in the Vandy game since they are playing another SEC team but, how can you pick Oregon over Tenn?? You haven’t forgotten that TENN is an SEC team have you????

ATL Tiger

September 10th, 2010
9:02 am

I think he’s wrong….South Carolina will come away with a win!

H-Back

September 10th, 2010
9:02 am

No Big X fan but the Buckeyes are going to spank the Hurricanes. Jacory throws 3 picks and Ohio States blows ‘em out late.

Paul in RDU

September 10th, 2010
9:03 am

I agree with most of the picks. Others:
FSU over OU as Ponder lights up CWM’s DBs to the tune of 350 yards and 4 TDs
Oregon big over UT – covers the spread and wins by 3 TDs They don’t know that they are supposed to quake in the face of SEC speed.
OSU by 10 over UM – the U said no mas to Wisconsin in Florida, no chance in the Horseshoe

PMC

September 10th, 2010
9:04 am

If Kansas could only muster 3 points vs N. Dakota State I don’t see them scoring at all on the Jackets.

Alphare

September 10th, 2010
9:04 am

I think SC will beat UGA in a close game. Here is why:

1. Coaching: both are good
2. Athletes: UGA is better overall
3. Garcia is better than Murray, Lattimore is better than Ealey after suspension. SC has no good receiver, and UGA has no AJGreen.

Because of #2 and #3, it’ll be close game. but heroism of Garcia and Lattimore will win this one for SC.

Georgia Tech Teacher

September 10th, 2010
9:04 am

Mostly good picks, Tony. However, if Oklahoma gave up 350 passing yards and 24 points to Utah State do you really think that they can keep a dark horse Heisman candidate like Christian Ponder under wraps? I’m not saying that FSU wins the game, but I’ll buy you a cold one if Oklahoma can keep them under 28 points.

Paul in RDU

September 10th, 2010
9:05 am

Gen Neyland @8:36 – Love your attitude Sir

Lowcountry Bulldawg

September 10th, 2010
9:07 am

I like FSU and Ponder at QB. Something tells me this is a statement game for FSU.

Also, I like Michigan over ND. This is the game were the Michigan faithful get a dose of what a Rich-Rod offense can do and he silences his critics.

Palladin

September 10th, 2010
9:08 am

I would be surprised if Ohio State doesn’t take Miami to the woodshed. I’ve been hearing about the return of Miami since they returned to being mediocre several years ago. Beat the Buckeyes and I’ll take notice. Until then… meh.

timthebrave

September 10th, 2010
9:08 am

I like all of your picks but I pick Tenn to upset Oregon. I’m not sure to bet it straight up but I do like the 12 points they are getting at home

Autiger

September 10th, 2010
9:10 am

Tony is the biggest UGA homer ever. Yesterday’s column was him sticking up for AJ Green. Today its UGA is going to win. I think this column should be renamed, Mr. UGA football rather than Mr. College Football.

Paul in RDU

September 10th, 2010
9:12 am

Palladin – I agree with you on Miami. They have the athletes but there is something missing in the team.

ned

September 10th, 2010
9:13 am

I don’t think you picked one upset Tony B.

NEXT#14

September 10th, 2010
9:13 am

I LOVE ALL THE WISHFUL THINKING THAT BAMA WILL LOSE….NOT GONNA HAPPEN GIRL’S!!!

MURPHY

September 10th, 2010
9:16 am

Gen Neyland,

I by no means ever pull for Rocky Top-Being a UGA fan I hate orange,but tommorrow I will be a Vol,s fan and I hope they roast some duck in Knoxville! Go Vols!!!!

1eyedJack

September 10th, 2010
9:17 am

I look for big games from Ealey, Charles, Houston, and Gamble.

Richt opens up the playbook this week and Grantham unleashes the hounds. Lakotas shares the UCONN gameplan for shutting down Darth Visor’s passing attack.

It’ll be close for three quarters but the depth will tell the tale in the fourth quarter with Georgia having it and the Barnyard Pimps not having it.

Dawgs 27 Chickens 16

George Stein

September 10th, 2010
9:17 am

From the looks of it, that game in Starkville better not be forgotten by UGA. They may think they only have two tough games but Miss St looks so much better than they did two or three years ago.

Don’t sleep on them.

George Stein

September 10th, 2010
9:18 am

By the way, what happened to 6:00 kick for South Carolina-UGA? I always thought that was a great time to start that game (or any game for that matter).

Paul in RDU

September 10th, 2010
9:19 am

ned – Tony picked one upset – guess which one

KR

September 10th, 2010
9:20 am

Alphare asked: “Is Auburn not as good as I thought, or Miss St is better than its old self? Auburn is a little better than last year, but doesn’t seem to be a whole lot better.”

This is my opinion: Auburn is not as good as people thought. They are a little better than last year but not a whole lot better. Mississippi State is better than its old self.

Auburn has a schizophrenic offensive coordinator, a confused offense, a marginal defense and poor special teams play. For the most part, the games all get harder from this point, so if Auburn doesn’t fix some of these areas quickly, it could be a very long season for me and my fellow Auburn fans.

All that being said, I will gladly take the win and I’m happy to be 2-0.

WAR EAGLE!

George Stein

September 10th, 2010
9:24 am

It’s funny, KR. I thought y’all would be pretty good this year as long as the defense was not so crappy. But you gotta give the boys from Miss St some credit. They played very well last night. Nice win though.

jsdi

September 10th, 2010
9:25 am

Um, Tony, it may not be exactly the Game of the Century, but you left out Arkansas vs. Louisiana Monroe. I’m sure that was just an oversight, not petty bitterness against Bobby Petrino, right?

UGA VII

September 10th, 2010
9:29 am

Georgia loses by 30.

Dawgs make 500k selling underwear and jerseys.

D Fence

September 10th, 2010
9:30 am

I hope Mr Everything John Brantley can actually handle the pressure this week from South Florida unlike his ability to cope with the stress that Miami of OH put on him. Come on Skip, make us all smile.

Paul in RDU

September 10th, 2010
9:32 am

KR – There is a reason for Auburn having a poor defense and it goes by the name Ted Roof.
Best thing Duke ever did was replace him with Cutcliffe

King Gator

September 10th, 2010
9:33 am

Anyone else drinking yet? Oh ish it’s only Friday morning and not Saturday… Go Gators! BTW, think the C_cks get all up in the Dawgs red panties.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

September 10th, 2010
9:34 am

UGA wins, Miami upsets OSU, and Michigan wins at the Big House. UGA has better depth in all positions except QB to defeat the Roosters

Pago Pago Dawg

September 10th, 2010
9:35 am

Is that guy from Penn. State the only head coach who does NOT wear a head-set?? Been asking this question for years..

George Stein

September 10th, 2010
9:35 am

Gen Neyland – if Tennessee really wanted to beat Oregon, they would have found a way to play the game at noon. That way it would feel like 9:00 A.M. for those guys. The fact that it’s a 7:00 P.M. game puts the Vols at a huge disadvantage.

GT and Kansas are very similar

September 10th, 2010
9:36 am

GT and Kansas are very similar in that both schools do play nice basketball …….from time to time.

Both schools went to the Orange Bowl in the late 60s ………..GT in 67 and Kansas is 69 or 70, when they had John Riggins. Both teams did again go to the Orange Bowl lately, 07 for Kansas and GT in 09. In between these Orange trips Kansas did see a Cotton Bowl of two but GT has not been to any other bowl of consequence after Dodd was defeated by Florida in the 67 Urange.

The 1990 Citrus trip for GT was at the time a very insignificant bowl, although GT along with 3 or 4 other schools won the NC that year.

The major bowl factor has to go to Kansas. Also, the Kansas coach did run the triple option at Nebraska and so he will know who to defend against it. GT still wins against a very, very insignificant team 34-20.

Bubba

September 10th, 2010
9:37 am

17 out of 20, must be a dumb Fla alum. looses is hilarious. what an idiot. gradilations.

Nix_2_Sanders

September 10th, 2010
9:39 am

Looking forward, the UGA- SC game is the most interesting. Last yrs game was a barn burner. Can’t wait to see how the teams match up.

***don’t be surprised when South Florida brings the heat to the Gators

Nix_2_Sanders

September 10th, 2010
9:42 am

Auburn had a conservative game plan last night—-threw the ball down field maybe 5 times the entire game. They just imposed their will and escaped Starkvegas with a W. AU’s defense shut down a Dan Mullen offense. Clemson really doesn’t have film to gameplan for…Auburns just going to run the ball down your throat…..

Auburn’s the real deal.

WAR EAGLE

Alphare

September 10th, 2010
9:43 am

Well, I mark Auburn vs UGA as a loss for Auburn. I gave a W for Auburn before last night.

Rest of nation

September 10th, 2010
9:43 am

There is so much FAIL in this article…i don’t even know where to begin!

TheTaxJacket

September 10th, 2010
9:50 am

Tony, the UGAG running game is OVERRATED. They looked better at the end of last year because they were playing TERRIBLE defenses. Just like last year, this line and the two backs will not be enough to make up for the QB’s shortcomings. Same story, new year for the BullFROGS.

S.CAR 41 UGA 9

((( 45 – 42 )))

Hilarious!

September 10th, 2010
9:51 am

Nix_2_Sanders is the reason I read this blog!!

kenlev

September 10th, 2010
9:57 am

Tony it’s easy to 9-1 the first week of college football because there are not many competitive games. SC will beat GA by putting 8 men in the box forcing Aaron Murray to throw the ball. The inexperienced GA quarterback will be the difference in the game. SC 28. Ga 24

GTax

September 10th, 2010
9:57 am

*** Nesbitt for Heismen ***

Volmania21

September 10th, 2010
9:57 am

Seminoles 24-17, Gators 28-17, Dawgs 31-24, Michigan 21-20, Vols 28-24 we will run the ball 40 times, keep the ducks off the field. Gt 42-17, Bama 35-20, The U 27-24. I will probably miss all these, but it’s fun trying.

RxDawg

September 10th, 2010
9:58 am

Welcome to clash of the titans week. This is the type of weekend you better get your chores done on friday night.

Well Auburn pulled it out last night in a very good game. The score was lower than predicted, but still both offenses looked quite formidable. If Missy St had a good QB they would really be a handful on offense.

UGA at USCe – This will probably look something like the game last night. Just replace those spreads with pro style offense. With AJ being out, this will allow USC to really load up in the box and force Murray to win this game. I liked what I saw from Murray last week, I think the Dawgs are well rounded enough to pull off the W.

Georgia Tech at Kansas – Um, Kansas lost to a Div1 AA team last week 6-3. Enough said. Nerds in a route.

FSU at Oklahoma – Oklahoma gave up ~ 350 passing yards to Utah St last week. Guess who coaches Oklahoma’s secondary? Why none other than the infamous Willie Martinez. I think FSU wins this one and steps back into the national spotlight for a little while.

Miami at Ohio State – This one was tough for me, but in the end I think Ohio State’s D line will be > Miami’s O line and that will be the difference in the game. This might be the most entertaining game of the week.

Penn State at Bama – Penn State probably has enough to keep this close….for the first half. I expect Bama to pretty much win this one comfortably.

South Florida at Florida – Boy, them Gators looked rough last week huh? 8 fumbles from the center to QB exchange? Meh, I still don’t see them losing to South Florida and those are the kind of things you fix in practice once you realize it’s going to a problem like that. Florida and it’s not close.

Oregon at UT – I don’t know what the spread is on this but I’d guess it’s probably a lot. I’d take UT and the points. This one will be closer than the experts think and I wouldn’t be blown away if UT pulled off the shocker. That said, UT just doesn’t have enough depth and Oregon will probably pull away towards the end.

Michigan at Notre Name – Who knows? These two has been teams are trying to be relevant again……..I’ll go with Michigan. They had so much trouble in the off season, I think it brought them together some. Brian Kelly will be a better coach at Notre Name than his large predecessor, but that will come next year.

LSU at Vandy – I don’t have a lot of confidence in LSU right now. But I have more with them than I do for Vandy.

Now don’t forget folks to prevent the bed sores and get up off that coach every couple of hours or so and move around.

DIT

September 10th, 2010
9:58 am

I’m 50/50 on the my Dawgs! I guess after 2 years of looking at a sub-par defense I need to see them break out and have a great game against a good team.

I think the noles will pull this one out. Something about them this year. They have a swagger.

I’d love to see Tenn. come out of nowhere a beat Oregon. However, Oregon is loaded this year. I would never sell UT short. They still have some athletes up there.
Good luck to all!

Paul in RDU

September 10th, 2010
9:59 am

Dr. Kenneth – Michigan may win at the Big House but it won’t be this week. The game is in South Bend

GSU Eagle 91

September 10th, 2010
10:00 am

I see a lot of FSU support here…They might be a better team but OK has lost just 2 times at home in the last 10 years….OK by 3…
Michigan QB is the difference maker as they beat the Irish 27-17.
SC over Dawgs 19-17…

eddd

September 10th, 2010
10:00 am

if UGA drops this one to SC, it will be interesting to see part of the fan base that is overlooking all the arrest and suspensions start to point the finger, I would estimate 40%. Drop two, and you will have 95% all of a sudden caring when now as long as uga goes undefeated they could care less.

Saint Simon

September 10th, 2010
10:01 am

I’m SOOO gay!

T3

September 10th, 2010
10:03 am

USC:29 UGA:24 (A MUST-MUST-MUST WIN game for Spurrier)

GT:49 KU:23 (GT with 250 yds rushing + 150 yds passing)

FSU:38 OU:26 (OU-Bob Stoops Offense vs FSU-Mark Stoops Defense)

OST:28 Miami:23

Bama:27 PSU:20

SoFla:30 UF:26 (UPSET ALERT)

TENN:26 ORE:25 (UPSET ALERT)

ND:24 UMich: 20

LSU:56 Vandy:0 (Miles needs the sytle points badly)

OleMiss:56 Tulane:12 (Nutt also needs style points badly)