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2008 Top 25 Previews - Week 1

NCAA football game previews for all the week 1 top 25 matchups of the 2008 season.

Archive: 2008 Week 1 College Football Top 25 Previews

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Thursday, August 4, 2008

#23 Wake Forest (0-0) @ Baylor (0-0)
Time: 8:00PM (EST)
Spread: Wake Forest -13
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The #23 ranked Demon Deacons begin their season on the road at a Big Twelve opponent. Wake Forest, who finished 8-4 last season, 5-3 in the ACC last season, will look to get off to a solid start as the first ranked team to kick off their 2008 slate. Wake Forest has 15 starters returning from last years squad. So, the question marks coming into the season are low. Losing Kenneth Moore, who caught 98 passes last season will be the biggest question mark for Wake. Baylor, on the other hand, who finished last season 3-8 and 0-8 in the Big Twelve, seem to feel they have a lot to prove this season. The Bears gave up 50 touchdowns while only scoring 28 last season. Defense is one area Baylor will need to improve on if they want to compete inside the Big Twelve. Look for young running back Jay Finley to have a strong season for the Bears. This should be a great start to the season, with the Bears hosting. Wake Forest as a 13 point favorite on the road is a little scary. However, they are a top 25 team for a reason, and they hope to stay there.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Georgia Southern (0-0) @ #1 Georgia (0-0)
Time: 12:30PM (EST)
Spread: N/A
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The #1 team in the country will begin their 2008 campaign with an inner state opponent. How good of a game it will be, is under question, but one thing that is not being questioned is the talent level of the Bulldogs. Georgia, 11-2 last year, finishing a tie for the SEC title, with a 6-2 record has expectations of national title game or bust. Head Coach Mark Richt, spent much off the off season defending his players from numerous off the field problems, that led to many arrests of Bulldog athletes. The Georgia defense should be outstanding this season, with nine starters returning from the team that was ranked 14th in the country last season. The Bulldogs also have a fantastic quarterback/running back duo with Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno. The weakness for Georgia appears to be their offensive line, which Coach Richt has been trying to shore up all off season. Georgia Southern had an up high battle when this game was first scheduled, and it got tougher recently as eight players were suspended for the game for violating school and team policies. Included in the suspended players were starting linebacker Terrione Benefield, a defensive back Ronnie Wiggins. Their was no set line for this game, and it would be wise to assume Georgia could pretty well name the score. But college football is a crazy game sometime, that’s why they play the game!

Youngstown State (0-0) @ #2 Ohio State (0-0)
Time: 12:00PM (EST)
Spread: Ohio State -34
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Buckeyes are back for another year, and once again the prize is on the national title in January. Ohio State, who won the Big Ten last season, finishing 7-1 within the conference, and 11-2 overall will host a young Youngstown State team looking to prove themselves to the world. The Buckeyes are looking for their fourth straight Big Ten title. Ohio State is returning 18 starters from last years team, including Heisman candidate Beanie Wells, at running back and James Laurinaitis, who some claim is the nations top linebacker. Youngstown State, a Division IIA team finished 7-4 last year, and third place in the Gateway Conference, finishing 3-3, behind Northern Iowa and Southern Illinois. Ohio State is a 34 point favorite, and in a game like this, it’s hard to tell. Ask Ohio State’s rival- Michigan, who it is like to be a huge favorite in an early season game.

#3 USC (0-0) @ Virginia (0-0)
Time: 3:30PM (EST)
Spread: USC –21.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: Here come the Trojans! The University of Southern California football team is back for another year. This year appears to be loaded with talent, and as the #3 team in the nation, according to preseason polls, they have a ton of expectations. After a 11-2 season, with a 7-2 Pac Ten season, the Trojans were able to capture the Rose Bowl Title. This year the Trojans have their eye on the prize, which they hope includes a national title. The Trojans are shooting for their seventh straight Pac Ten title, and will be led by Junior quarterback Mark Sanchez. Sanchez injured his knee on August 9th, with back-up Mitch Mustain ready to take off, if needed. The linebacking core for USC is rated among the nations best behind Brian Cushing, and Rey Maualuga on the offensive side. On the defensive side, All American candidate Fili Moala looks to be an All American candidate. Virginia, out of the Atlanta Coast Conference had a solid 9-4 2007 season, with a 6-2 conference mark. Since the bowl loss to Texas Tech last season, the Cavaliers have since lost their quarterback, cornerback, defensive end, and defensive coordinator. Oh, and don’t forget Chris Long and Branden Albert were both drafted at the top of the NFL draft. Behind head coach Al Groh, the Cavaliers have a lot of question marks, which would explain their place in the middle of the ACC pack. The Cavaliers have one thing going for them in week one, and that is they get to play the Trojans at home, but that is about it. As a three-touchdown favorite, USC appears to be a much stronger team in this matchup.

Chattanooga (0-0) @ # 4 Oklahoma (0-0)
Time: 7:00PM (EST)
Spread: Oklahoma -47.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Oklahoma Sooners are another top 5 team with high expectations and eyes on the prize. Coach Bob Stoops won his second straight Big 12 conference last season, but then lost in disappointing fashion to West Virginia in the Fiesta Bowl. Oklahoma will return their quarterback Sam Bradford, who led the nation in pass efficiency last year. The Sooners running back, DeMarco Murray also returns. Murray ran for an average of 6 years per carry last season. Also returning is top receiver Juaquin Iglesias, who caught 68 passes, and compiled 907 yards for the Sooners. The question mark for the Sooners will be on the defensive end, but they hope to get huge production out of DE Frank Alexander. For Chattanooga, the Mocs come into this game as nearly a seven touchdown underdog. A moral victory would be competing with the juggernaut Sooners. Chattanooga went 2-9 last year, competing in the Southern Conference, and finishing seventh at 2-5. It’s hard to know in a collegiate football game, if a team can cover 47.5 points, but with the powerful offense of the Sooners, it would not be a bad bet to place on the Sooners –47.5!

Hawaii (0-0) @ #5 Florida (0-0)
Time: 12:30PM (EST)
Spread: Florida -34
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: Gator Football is back for another season. This year, as the #5 team in the nation, Gator fans are looking towards the possibility of another BCS bowl game, and possibly the title game. Inside the tough SEC, the Gators will definitely be challenged, but don’t appear to have much of a challenge in week one. Urban Meyer’s team has high expectations returning quarterback Tim Tebow, and most of the offense, which scored 42.5 points per, game. After last years 9-4 season, the Gators were not invited to a BCS bowl game. While the offense appears to be running smoothly for the Gators, the question mark is the defense. For Hawaii, the Warriors get the daunting task of being the Gators week one guinea pig. While the Warriors are coming off a school best 12-1 season, winning the Western Athletic Conference with a 8-0 record, they still come into week one as a 34 point underdog. Star quarterback Colt Brennan, along with four excellent receivers, and coach June Jones are all gone from last years squad. A team that was an offensive juggernaut the past few years will turn their attention to improve the defensive, and becoming a more defensive oriented program. While the Warriors may get back to a bowl game, and be a solid collegiate football team in the 2008 season, Florida is not a good start to a team trying to revamp their entire squad. This game has the potential of turning ugly. But if Hawaii wants to find out where their defense is after week one, they get quite the challenge, right out of the gates!

#20 Illinois (0-0) @ # 6 Missouri (0-0)
Time: 8:30PM (EST)
Spread: Missouri -9
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The world wants to know. Is Ron Zook for real as a head coach, or was 2007 a fluke for the Fighting Illini? Coming off a dream season of reaching the Rose Bowl, only to fall to USC, the Illini have high hopes again for 2007. The Illini finished 2007 9-4, with a 6-2 Big Ten record. The Illini have lost 11 of 24 starters but bring back a load of talent. Quarterback Juice Williams has a lot of pressure put on him, and his number one target Arrelious Benn hopes to put up numbers that many experts are expecting out of him- All American type. Missouri, coming in as the #6 team in the preseason bowl is coming off a school record 12 wins in 2007. The Tigers finished 12-1, with a 7-1 Big 12 record. The only thing between Missouri and the 2007 National Title game was the Oklahoma Sooners, who knocked the Tigers off 38-17 in the Big 12 title game. Missouri returns 17 starters, including two guys who have the potential to win the Heisman trophy. Quarterback Chase Daniel returns, and has his mind set on a nation title in 2008. He will have a lot of help with receiver Jeremy Maclin and tightend Chase Coffman. The nine points the Tigers are given seems to be pretty high for two top twenty teams, but with the Illini having as many question marks as they do, this game could end up a laugher.

Villanova (0-0) @ #8 West Virginia (0-0)
Time: 3:30PM (EST)
Spread: West Virginia -23
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: There is a new head coach in town for West Virginia. Rich Rodriguez is gone, and Bill Stewart is in. Stewart got the Mountaineers off to a good start at the end of the 2007 season, knocking off Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl. The Mountaineers appear to be altering their offense, which has called for more passing, and more motion within their offense. Pat White, the quarterback looks to be instrumental in the Mountaineer offense. Running the ball close to 200 times last year, Coach Stewart hopes to lower that number this season. For Coach Stewart to do that, the receiving core will have to improve. The Wildcats are coming off a 7-4 2007 season, in which they finished tied for fourth in the Colonial Conference. The Mountaineers always play well at home, and look for that to not change in 2008. A three plus touchdown favorite appears to be about right for this game.

#24 Alabama (0-0) @ # 9 Clemson (0-0)
Time: 3:30PM (EST)
Spread: Clemson -5.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: NCAA football game of the week of week one's college football matchups. But close, along with Illinois at Missouri’s battle, this should be a classic. The 5.5 point line is an interesting opening line that should provide for quite the dilemma at most work sites, trying to figure out their week one bets. Alabama is coming off a 7-6 season, including 4-4 in the SEC. But new for the Tide in 2008? Head coach Nick Saban. The former LSU coach is back in the collegiate ranks, and will assuredly have his team ready to go week one. The strength for Alabama appears to be on their offensive line, where big boys Antoine Caldwell and Andre Smith have plenty of game experience. John Parker Wilson will begin his senior season as the starting quarterback for the Tide, so he will have to come up big, because the lack of depth behind him is significant. For Clemson, a high preseason ranking has the Tigers excited. After a 9-4 season in 2008, and 5-3 in the ACC, for a second place finish in the Atlantic side of the conference. The Tigers are looking for their first ACC title since 1991, but for now have their eyes set on Alabama. Clemson’s offense appears to be loaded, while the defense returns seven starters from 2007. James Davis and C.J. Spiller sport one of the most explosive running back duos in the nation, while Aaron Keller, Jacoby Ford and Tyler Grisham will catch plenty of passes from quarterback Cullen Harper. This should be a heck of a start with fireworks coming out of this ball game!

Florida Atlantic (0-0) @ #11 Texas
Time: 7:00PM (EST)
Spread: Auburn –26.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: Another season, another top 15 preseason ranking for the Longhorns. After a 10-3 season, along with a 5-3 Big 12 record Texas looks to rank among the top of the conference inside the loaded Big 12. Junior quarterback Colt McCoy will lead the Longhorn attack, and he has the benefit of several nice receivers in Limas Sweed, Quan Cosby, and Jordan Shipley. Texas’ week one opponent is Florida Atlantic, a team that won the Sun Belt in 2007 with a 8-5 record(6-1 in conference play). The Owls will return 17 starters from last years team that beat Memphis in the New Orleans Bowl. One of those starters is quarterback Rusty Smith, who has one of the strongest arms in collegiate football. This could be a little closer than 23 points, due to the fact that Florida Atlantic is not your run of the mill token week one opponents.

Louisiana Monroe (0-0) @ #10 Auburn (0-0)
Time: 7:00PM (EST)
Spread: Texas –23
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Auburn Tigers sneak into the top 10, in the preseason polls, and have high hopes in a jam packed SEC conference. Coming off a 9-4 2007, in which they finished 5-3 in the SEC, the Tigers are one of five SEC teams ranked in the preseason poll. With a new offensive coordinator Auburn looks to open up the offense this season, and are expected to throw the ball more. Coach Tommy Tuberville is convinced in his team defensively, but he has stated numerous times, they need to score more points to be a national power. Auburn will be very experienced in 2008, but will depend on a junior college signee in Chris Todd behind center at quarterback. Todd has a great arm, but has some questions on if he can stay healthy. Wide Receiver James Swinton had a great spring and looks to break quickness to the receiving core. For Louisiana Monroe, as a 26.5 underdog, playing on the road at Auburn is not an easy way to begin the 2008 campaign. 6-6 last year, and 4-3, finishing tied for third in the Sun Belt conference, the Warhawks have a lot of talent returning. Frank Goodin returns at running back, while Kinsmon Lancaster, will finish his career at quarterback, has outstanding speed. This may end up being a pretty competitive game, if the true talent of Louisiana Monroe comes out and plays, and is not overwhelmed playing on the road.

Eastern Washington (0-0) @ #12 Texas Tech (0-0)
Time: 7:00PM (EST)
Spread: N/A
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Red Raiders of Texas Tech, out of the Big 12 conference are coming off a 9-4 season, in which they went 4-4 inside the conference looking for big things during the 2008 season. Texas Tech has 18 starters returning from last years squad. Quarterback Graham Harrell is set to break many school and national records as the Red Raider quarterback. The third year quarterback needs only 42 touchdowns to surpass Colt Brennan’s record, while compiling 1,372 yards will break Texas Tech’s passing record of 12,054. Last year Harrell threw for 5,705 yards for the season. With a new defensive coordinator in place for this season the Red Raiders look to put together an entire package. Eastern Washington is coming off a successful 2007 campaign that saw them finish 9-4, and 6-2 inside the Big Sky conference. The Eagles scored 56 touchdowns, while allowing 36 on the season. The Eagles will rely on quarterback Matt Nichols in their newly acquired no huddle offense. The Eagles will have to put plenty of points on the board to stay with the Red Raiders in week one. This could be a shootout!

Akron (0-0) @ #13 Wisconsin (0-0)
Time: 12:00PM (EST)
Spread: Wisconsin –26.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: Wisconsin seems to be battling Ohio State for early season Big Ten favorites. The Badgers finished the 2007 season with a 9-4 season, including a 5-3 Big Ten record, which placed them fourth. The Badgers have had some off season problems which concluded recently with head coach Bret Bielema dismissing junior running back Lance Smith from the team. Smith averaged 6 yards per carry last season for the Badgers. Wisconsin fans don’t seem to mind too much, as their running game seems to be a huge positive for this squad. P.J. Hill and Zach Brown seem to be a dynamic 1-2 duo in the backfield. Akron, out of the Mid American conference finished 2007 4-8, and 3-5 in the conference. Akron coaches, players and fans seem to be a little irritated with their preseason prediction of finishing fifth in the conference, so don’t be surprised if the Zips come out with a little bit of a swagger in week one. Fifth year coach J.D Brookhart has a decision to make before next week between quarterbacks Chris Jacquemain or freshman Matt Rodgers. The Badgers come in as nearly a four-touchdown favorite, but again, it would be wise for a huge Big Ten favorite to not take the underdog lightly this early in the season.

Florida International (0-0) @ # 14 Kansas (0-0)
Time: 7:00PM (EST)
Spread: Kansas –36.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Jayhawks are coming off a dream season in 2007. Kansas finished 12-1, and 7-1 in the powerful Big 12 conference. Head Coach Mark Mangino has his starting quarterback Todd Reesing back for another season, and also has a very solid line backing core. On the defensive end, the Jayhawks lose Aqib Talib and James McClinton, but still appear to be extremely solid. Week one should not be too much of a problem for the Jayhawks, and definitely not a Big 12 tester. Florida International finished 1-11 last season, and 1-6 in the Sunbelt conference. Last season, Florida International only scored 28 games in their first five games, all outside of the conference. The Golden Panthers are not expecting to come out of Kansas with a win, but a touchdown or two, and limiting the Jayhawk offense would be something FIU will key on.

Northern Arizona @ #15 Arizona State (0-0)
Time: 10:00PM (EST)
Spread: Arizona State –31.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: Out of the PAC Ten, the Sun Devils of Arizona State are going to need to be solid. Solid, it appears is an accurate word for the 2008 version. Coming off a nice 2007 season in which they finished 10-3, and 7-2 in the conference, this years schedule is not as cozy as last year’s version. The Sun Devils will play both USC and Georgia, and a four game stretch in which they see California, Oregon, USC and Georgia. Quarterback Rudy Carpenter has plenty of talented receivers to work with, but the question mark for ASU is the offensive line. If they can keep Carpenter protected this team will put plenty of points on the board. Arizona State’s first week opponent is inner state opponent Northern Arizona. NAU finished 6-5 in 2007, including a 5-3 Big Sky mark. The Lumberjacks scored 35 touchdowns, while allowing 36 in 2007. The Sun Devils are 4.5 touchdown favorites, but against a team that is the small fish in a big pound, you never know!

Northern Iowa (0-0) @ #16 Brigham Young (0-0)
Time: 6:00PM (EST)
Spread: N/A
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: BYU comes into the 2008 season with high expectations and a top 20 preseason ranking. The Cougars finished 2007 11-2, and 8-0 in the Mountain West. Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall hopes to shake the starts of the last two seasons, which both began at 1-2. The Cougars cannot start 1-2 if they want to participate in a BCS bowl in 2008. Junior Quarterback Max Hall appears to be the leader of this team, and the Broncos will go as far as he can take them. For Northern Iowa, the winners of the IAA Gateway Conference, finished 12-1 last season, losing in the quarterfinals of the playoffs to Delaware, and their start quarterback Joe Flacco.

Tennessee Martin (0-0) @ # 19 South Florida (0-0)
Time: 7:00PM (EST)
Spread: South Florida –39.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Bulls are coming off a 9-4 season, in which they finished 4-3 inside the Big East. At one point during the 2007 season South Florida was ranked as high as #2 in the BCS rankings. Was that a fluke or is South Florida for real in their 11th season of playing football? The Bulls have 16 returning starters from last season, so a top 20 preseason ranking is not unreasonable. Junior quarterback Matt Grothe will begin his third season behind center for the Bulls. Running back Mike Ford ran for over 600 yards and scored 12 touchdowns, and his running mate Ben Williams scored six touchdowns for over 400 yards. Tennessee Martin, out of the Gateway Conference, is a 1AA football school. Last season they finished 4-7, and 4-4 within the conference. The Bulls are given almost 40 points, and if they are as good as expectations believe them to be, that should not be difficult to cover.

#17 Virginia Tech (0-0) @ East Carolina (0-0)
Time: 12:00PM (EST)
Spread: Virginia Tech -10
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Hokies begin their 2008 campaign on the road. As the #17 team in the nation, and the preseason favorite to win the coastal division of the Atlanta Coast Conference, Virginia Tech is excited to face a challenge right out of the shoot. Virginia Tech finished the 2007 season with a 11-3 record, and 7-1 in the ACC. The Hokies lose 12 starters from last year’s team, including 8 players who were selected in the NFL draft. Virginia Tech has a quarterback competition on going, so that will need to get resolved before week 1. The two candidates, Sean Glennon, and Tyrod Taylor have both had impressive camps. The offense for the Hokies appears to be a strength, while they will have to improve on the defensive side of the ball to compete as a top 20 team in the nation. East Carolina, coming off a 8-5 season, finishing second in Conference USA with a 6-2 record is thrilled to begin the season with a top 20 team coming to their house. The Pirates are coming off a thrilling 41-38 upset of Boise State in last years Hawaii Bowl. The Pirates bring several guys back from last years team, but their biggest loss was running back Chris Johnson, who was drafted in the first round by the Tennessee Titans. If the Pirates can replace Johnson with one or two impressive performers, look for a successful season. This should be a very interesting week one battle. With the Hokies coming in as a ten-point favorite, the underdog could look good in this one.

Washington (0-0) @ # 21 Oregon (0-0)
Time: 10:00PM (EST)
Spread: Oregon -14
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: You got to love a PAC Ten game right out of the shoot in week one! The Huskies of Washington are coming off a disastrous 2007 season that saw them finish near the bottom of the conference, with a 4-9 mark. New head coach for Washington, Tyrone Willingham will be relying on a bevy of freshmen and sophomores. For Oregon, high expectations once again, but with a few off season problems, the Ducks could be sitting shorthanded for week one. With safety Todd Doxey drowning, and linebacker Kevin Garrett getting suspended, the Ducks are looking for hole fillers. The Ducks lose quarterback Dennis Dixon and running back Jonathan Stewart as well. But with some young talent, and a little success from the new quarterback Nate Costa the Ducks will be back in the BCS picture in no time!

Coastal Carolina (0-0) @ #22 Penn State (0-0)
Time: 12:00PM (EST)
Spread: Penn State -39
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: Another Big Ten favorite starting the year as a huge favorite at home. The Joe Paterno, spent much of the off season defending his players, and their off the field troubles. Paterno, 81 years old, is beginning his 43rd season, and most likely his last as the Nittany Lions head coach. Coming off a fifth place finish in the Big Ten, in which they went 4-4, and 9-4 overall, the Nittany Lions look to send their coach off with a successful campaign. Penn State will start 13 seniors, and are adding some incredible young talent. Some of the guys for Penn State that have looked real sharp in the Spring are tight end Andrew Szczerba, and running back Stephon Green. For Coastal Carolina, playing inside the Big South does not prepare them for the top of talent they will see in week one. Last season the Chanticleers, finished the season 5-6, 3-1 inside the Big South. Outside of week one, the schedule for Coastal Carolina looked to be fairly favorable. Unfortunately for CCU, they are not able to skip over week one, which could be ugly. Look for Penn State to get off to a huge start, and taking no prisoners, otherwise known as Coastal Carolina athletes.

#23 Wake Forest (0-0) @ Baylor (0-0)
Time: 12:00PM (EST)
Spread: Wake Forest -13
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The #23 ranked Demon Deacons begin their season on the road at a Big Twelve opponent. Wake Forest, who finished 8-4 last season, 5-3 in the ACC last season, will look to get off to a solid start, as the first ranked team to kick off their 2008 slate. Wake Forest has 15 starters returning from last years squad, so the question marks coming into the season are low. Losing Kenneth Moore, who caught 98 passes last season will be the biggest question mark for Wake. Baylor, on the other hand finished last season 3-8, and 0-8 in the Big Twelve- seem to feel they have a lot to prove this season. The Bears gave up 50 touchdowns, while only scoring 28 last season, so that is one area Baylor will need to improve on, if they want to compete inside the Big Twelve. Look for young running back Jay Finley to have a strong season for the Bears. This should be a great start to the season, with the Bears hosting. Wake Forest as a 13 point favorite on the road is a little scary, but they are a top 25 team for a reason, and they hope to stay there.

Bowling Green (0-0) @ #25 Pittsburgh (0-0)
Time: 12:00PM (EST)
Spread: Pittsburgh –12.5
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The Pittsburgh Panthers were the last team to slide into the Top 25 in the first AP poll. The Panthers job now is to prove they belong. After last seasons 5-7 season, and 3-4 within the Big East, there seems to be a lot of questions about why the Panthers are in the Top 25. Head Coach Dave Wannstedt claims their top 25 billing has nothing to do with the late season upset of then number one West Virginia late in last years season. He says “ that will not help us win one game this season.” And he is right; the Panthers are going to have to rely on their 2008 squad. That squad will be led by Junior quarterback Bill Stull. Stull was said to have a big spring for the Panthers. Bowling Green will not be a pushover in week one. The Falcons won the Mid American Conference last year with a 6-2-conference record, and a 8-5 overall record. Their last game of last season was not the way they would like to continue the 2008 season. In that game, Tulsa beat Bowling Green 63-7, in the GMAC Bowl. Look for the Falcons to come out with a little revenge on their mind for the 2008 season. As a 12.5-point favorite, the Panthers seem to be a decent bet, but picking a 5-7 team is never an easy wager.

Monday, September 1, 2008

#18 Tennessee (0-0) @ UCLA (0-0)
Time: 8:00PM (EST)
Spread: Tennessee -7
Over/Under: N/A
Preview: The 2007 SEC Eastern Division Champion Tennessee Volunteers are starting the 2008 season on the road. Not only are they starting on the road, but starting in Southern California in a PAC Ten stadium. Tennessee, coming off a 10-4 2007 season, in which they went 6-2 in the SEC has a brutal schedule to start the year. Not only do they face the Bruins in week one, but also host Florida and travel to Auburn in their first two SEC games. The Vols have one of the best offensive lines in the nation, has an excellent tailback, and have a lot of talent receivers on offense. The Vols are putting the offense in the hands of Junior quarterback Jonathan Crompton. For UCLA redshirt freshman Kevin Craft gets the nod. First year coach Rick Neuheisel understands his team is a work in progress, and may not quite be ready to compete at the top of the PAC Ten. But it’s still UCLA. Along with Neuheisel, UCLA also brought in a new offensive and defensive coordinator so things will look different for the Bruins. If UCLA can mature early, they could give the Vols all they want plus some in week one. But, that’s asking a lot from a young, inexperienced Bruin squad.

 

 


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