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NCAA College Football 2010-11 Week 2 Picks

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Fearless Rick's 2010-11 College Football Week 2 Picks - Early Games

Rick Gagliano | September 9-11

All times Eastern - Click here for late games.

Thursday, Sept. 9

Central Michigan at Temple (-8, 48 1/2), 7:00 pm - Coming off another successful campaign, the MAC powerhouse Chippewas took care of business in their opener, routing cream-puff Hampton, 33-0. Sophomore QB Ryan Radcliff took the reins from all-conference superstar Dan LeFevour (now in the NFL), throwing for 242 and a touchdown.

Temple survived a scare against Villanova, hitting a field goal with seconds to play for a 25-24 lead, and then recovered a fumble on the ensuing kickoff for the final score in their opener. Owl running backs Matt Brown and Bernard Pierce should carry the day for Temple, seeking another bowl bid after an awesome 9-4 season in 2009. Watch this line closely for clues - Temple gets overbet and Central Michigan is no pushover, thus, will cover.

Prediction: Owls 24 Chippewas 20


Auburn (-3 1/2, 55 1/2) at Mississippi State, 7:30 pm - Auburn QB Cam Newton got rave reviews after throwing for 186 yards and 3 TDs and rushing for 171 and 2 TDs against Arkansas State in the Tigers' opener, but the defense didn't exactly shut down the Red Wolves in a 52-26 laugher.

Enter the two-headed beast that is the Mississippi State offense, alternating between QBs Tyler Russell and Chris Relf, who together accounted for 372 yards passing in their 49-7 trouncing of Memphis. Week 2 being the toughest to predict of the entire college season, the inclination is to take the home dog, but the Bulldogs have only beaten Auburn once in their last nine tries, and the Tigers look like they may have something of a Heisman candidate in Newton. If the defense irons out some kinks, this could become a rout.

Prediction: Tigers 34 Bulldogs 19

Friday, Sept. 10

West Virginia (-13 1/2, 46 1/2) at Marshall, 7:00 pm - The Thundering Herd didn't make much noise in their 45-7 loss to Ohio State, so they should not pose a problem for the Mountaineers, poised to win the Big East and make a BCS Bowl game on the legs of Noel Devine and the arms of QB Geno Smith.

Marshall committed three turnovers and only put together 199 yards of offense against the Buckeyes. They might not find the end zone in this one, as WVA's defense didn't allow little Coastal Carolina inside the 20-yard line in their opening 31-0 win.

Tough way for Marshall to start the season. Whoever is doing their scheduling might want to lighten the load a little next season. Starting out 0-2 against two power programs gives players headaches, backaches and assorted mental ailments.

Prediction: Mountaineers 38 Thundering Herd 13


UTEP at Houston (-18, 74), 10:15 pm - Opening their season with a 31-10 win over Arkansas Pine Bluff, UTEP faces a much larger challenge when they travel to play the Houston Cougars, who were 68-28 winners over tiny Texas State. Cougar quarterback, Case Keenum, was 17-of-22 for 278 yards and only five TDs, but he did throw a couple of picks against a second-tier rival.

The score was 68-7 before the Cougars pulled their starters, resulting in three straight scores by the Bobcats. Houston's defense, nearly invisible last season, may be better-than-advertised this time around, though it's hard to tell at this early point in the season. Before getting carried away with the high-octane Houston offense, bear in mind that the Miners have knocked off the Cougars twice in the past five years, including last season's 58-41 take-down. The last time these two met in Houston, the Cougars came away with a 42-37 win, so don't expect the Miners to go down without a significant fight and possible upset.

Prediction: Cougars 45 Miners 34


Saturday, Sept. 11

Georgia Tech (-12, 49) at Kansas, 12:00 pm - The Jayhawks were the only Big 12 school to taste defeat in week one of the collegiate season, losing a defensive struggle to North Dakota State, 6-3. Now, maybe the Bison played inspired football or are just a really great team nobody knows much about, but the game was on Kansas turf and spoiled the debut of head coach Turner Gill, who took over after Mark Mangino was pushed out last season.

All is not well in Lawrence and hosting a very capable Georgia Tech team coming off a 41-10 thumping of South Carolina State, the problems are sure to magnify. Tech is loaded with running backs and will pound at the Jayhawks relentlessly from their spread-option formations. Coach Gill has his hands full turning around a program that ended 2009 with seven straight losses. Kansas will likely lose a few more before they start moving in the right direction and this will be another learning experience.

Prediction: Yellow Jackets 31 Jayhawks 17


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Georgia at South Carolina (-2 1/2, 47), 12:00 pm - Georgia is rranked higher than South Carolina in most polls, but that's meaningless here, especially after the way the Gamecocks got after it in their win over Southern Miss. The Bulldogs rooled to a 55-7 win over little Louisiana-Lafayette, in another showing that football isn't always fair.

The game become real with these two SEC East teams vying - along with Tennessee and Florida - for a chance to meet Alabama at year's end in the conference championship. The line offers a bit of a clue as to how the Vegas people view this contest. While Georgia has beaten the Gamecocks seven out of the last eight times, they're just 1-4-1 ATS in their last six. A changing of the guard is underway in the SEC and South Carolina is leading the charge. Look for the Gamecocks to bottle up Georgia's running game and force some errant throws from Aaron Murray. Georgia's star wideout, A.J. Green may also miss this game. His status has yet to be resolved as he may have been involved in the agent party scandal along with over a dozen players from North Carolina and various players from other top schools.

Prediction: Gamecocks 31 Bulldogs 20


South Florida at Florida (-17, 50), 12:20 pm - While nobody was looking, South Florida managed an 8-5 record in 2009 and this season have some talent to complement their exceptional QB, B.J. Daniels.

While the Gators were adjusting to life after Tim Tebow, winning ugly over Miami (OH), 34-12, the Bulls were dismantling Snony Brook, 59-14. Daniels threw for 264 yards and a pair of scores, one each to Dontavia Bogan and Joel Miller.

The Bulls are coached now by Skip Holtz, who brings a winning formula from East Carolina to the Sunshine State. Loaded for bear, the Bulls may actually snare some Gators in what could be the upset of the week. Florida isn't nearly the team they were with Tebow and it will show, beginning this week in their first real test.

Prediction: Bulls 28 Gators 17


Florida State at Oklahoma (-9, 58), 3:30 pm - Another game which has "look out" written all over it. Oklahoma is breaking in a new offense, and there's no Sam Bradford back there to throw the ball around. The Sooners lost a lot of players to graduation and the draft, and barely got by Utah State in their debut, 31-24, making coaches and players a bit nervous about the visiting Seminoles this week.

Florida State opened the Jimbo Fisher era with a 59-6 knock-out of overwhelmed Samford, with everything clicking. Christian Ponder tossed four TDs in the first half, hitting on 12 of 14 throws for 167 yards, though he did have one pass picked off. Ty Jones busted a 57-yard TD run for another Seminole score and the defense limited Samford to 75 yards in the first half.

Oklahoma has a history of losing early in the season, and this year looks like more of the same, only worse. Florida State players won't shy from hitting the Sooners where it hurts and will be unmoved by any hype. Making them nine-point underdogs only adds to their motivation.

Prediction: Seminoles 27 Sooners 21

All times Eastern - Click here for late games

Copyright 2010, 2011, Rick Gagliano, Downtown Magazine. All rights reserved. Downtown Magazine is located in the Uinted States of America and is not affiliated with the National Football League or the NCAA. For more information, contact us here. Use of this site is for entertainment purposes only.

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