Once again Notre Dame makes a liar out of me. All they have to do is hold on to a 3 point lead with 30 seconds to play and I would have gone 6-0 like I promised, damn Catholics! Still, 5-1 isn’t too shabby. Week 3 finds the ACC in the spotlight. Sports talk show hosts in Richmond have been yakking all week about how vital it is for the ACC to make a “statement” this weekend. Well, that’s because the ACC conference has been a national joke in football for many years and they are desperate for a quality win against a quality non-conference opponent. We’ll see about that:
Auburn vs. Clemson
Auburn qualifies as a quality opponent. Although not as good as last years national championship team, they are still a SEC powerhouse. I learned in week one of this enterprise that I should never pick against the SEC in a “big, high profile game”. However, this game is neither, except in the fevered imagination of Clemson fan. I go out on a limb, against my better judgment and predict that Clemson actually wins this game 24-21.
West Virginia vs. Maryland
Maryland won against Miami only because of the blinding, audaciously hideous, nervous-system destroying shock and awe that was their uniforms. Millions of viewers all around the country spent the first 30 minutes of that game adjusting their TV sets and yelling obscenities at the cable company. It was as if these uniforms were designed by a team of sugared-up pre-schoolers, and graphic designers on acid. Well, unfortunately for the Terrapins, West Virginia will be ready for this visual tsunami, becoming the first college football team to play an entire game wearing 3-D glasses. The Mountaineers win 30-17.
Arkansas State vs. Virginia Tech
You can’t really blame Tech, I suppose. I mean, when every time you schedule a quality non-conference opponent, you get your ass kicked, after awhile you get tired of it. “Play somebody!!”, Tech haters are always saying. Well, enough of that. There are no Alabama’s or Boise State’s on this year’s schedule. Arkansas State will have to do. Tech wins again 20-10.
Ohio State vs. Miami
Too good to be true, this match up. It practically writes itself. The Buckeyes all show up at the Orange Bowl driving Escalades and showing off the latest in cutting edge body art. Then Miami’s entire squad pulls up at a nearby dock in a 100 foot party boat being served Dom Perignon by a bevy of strippers. If there ever was a game that perfectly captures what college football in 2011 is all about, its this one. Picking a winner here will make me feel dirty either way, so I will hold my nose and predict that Ohio State will feel overwhelmed by all the hot chicks hanging off the Miami players when all THEY got were those lousy tattoos. Miami 30- 24.
Oklahoma Vs. Florida State
This is the big kahuna for ACC fans seeking redemption and a measure of pride in their football prowess. But here’s the problem. The last 31 times an ACC school has teed it up against a non-conference team that was ranked in the top five in the country at kickoff, they have lost, mostly by embarrassing scores. The last win? In 2000, Florida State beat Florida. Yep, its been a long time. After today, its gonna be 32 straight. The Sooners win 38-14.
UVA vs. North Carolina
My finely tuned football instincts tell me that an ACC school will win this game. Although both teams are 2-0, they seem to be headed in opposite directions. After finally getting his first road win as coach last week against Indiana, Mike London finds that he really enjoys winning on the road. The Cavaliers go 3-0 by beating the Tar Heels 17-14. Then all the Hoos in Hooville completely lose their minds, actually thinking that their team doesn’t suck.
So, there it is. In this pivotal weekend for ACC pride, the conference goes 3-2. It will be lost on ACC fan that the game that put them over the top was the Hokies thrilling win over that perennial powerhouse..Arkansas State.