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Archive: 2008 Week Four College Football Game Previews
Thursday, September 18, 2008
#21 West Virginia (1-1) @ Colorado (2-0)
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Time: 8:30pm ET
Spread: West Virginia –2.5
Preview: The Colorado Buffaloes come into Thursday nights game with a perfect 2-0 record after knocking off both Colorado State, and Eastern Washington at home. Colorado has put up 69 points, and only allowed 41 in the two wins. Quarterback Cody Hawkins is 48 of 67 on the season with 475 yards and four touchdowns. West Virginia is the first of four ranked teams Colorado will see consecutively. For the Mountaineers, after a week off, they hope to rebound from the 24-3 pasting put on them by East Carolina. West Virginia was a 48-21 winner in week one over Villanova. Quarterback Pat White is 36 of 51 on the year with 280 yards and five touchdowns. This will be a battle between a solid Big East squad and a solid Big 12 squad. This game is the ESPN Thursday night game of the week.
#3 Georgia (3-0) @ Arizona State (2-1)
Time: 8:00pm ET
Spread: Georgia –6.5
Preview: Last week, this game would have been a real premiere ball game, with both teams ranked in the top 15, and undefeated. Unfortunately, for the Sun Devils, an upset loss at the hands of UNLV has dropped them out of the top 25 completely. The loss, a 23-20 overtime defeat came at a bad time, as now Arizona State will take on ranked opponents in three of the next four games. For Georgia, after easy wins in week one and week two, Saturday was a rough, tough battle, in which they came away with a 14-7 win at South Carolina. In that game Knowshon Moreno gave Georgia the lead with a four-yard touchdown run in the third quarter- Moreno finished with 79 yards on 20 carries. This game will feature two teams from power conferences, that both have aspirations of a BCS bowl.
#4 Florida (2-0) @ Tennessee (1-1)
Time: 3:30pm ET
Spread: Florida –7.5
Preview: The Gators of Florida University are coming off a bye, in which they certainly prepared for the Volunteers tough offense. Florida comes in 2-0, with wins over Hawaii, and Miami. The Gators have scored and average of 41 points a game, while only allowing 6.5. In the two wins, quarterback Tim Tebow has completed 30 of 49 passes for 393 yards and three touchdowns. Tebow’s number one receiver thus far has been Louis Murphy, who has caught 6 catches for 128 yards in the teams first two games. For Tennessee, after coming off the disappointing week one loss to UCLA 27-24 in overtime, the Vols’ were 35-3 winners at home, over UAB. In the win over the Blazers, quarterback Johnathan Crompton completed 19 of 31 passes for 240 yards, but also threw two interceptions. Running back Arian Foster ran for 100 yards on 12 carries in the win. The winner of this ball game will have the early upper hand on the always tough SEC East.
Buffalo (2-1) @ #5 Missouri (3-0)
Time: 2:00pm ET
Spread: Missouri –34
Preview: The Missouri Tigers have put up an impressive 173 points in their first three games of the season. With 52-42, 52-3, and 69-17 wins over Illinois, Southeast Missouri State, and Nevada respectively, the Tigers expect nothing different this Saturday. In the last two games, the Tigers defense has also stepped up, only allowing an average of 10 points a game. Quarterback Chase Daniel has become Missouri’s career passing leader. In the win Saturday, Daniel threw for 405 yards and four touchdowns, and led the Tigers to points on their first ten possessions of the game. The Tigers week four opponent will be the Buffalo Bulls. The Bulls are 2-1 on the year with wins over UTEP and Temple, and a 27-16 loss at Pittsburgh. Buffalo currently leads the MAC’s East Division with the win over Temple. In the 30-28 win over Temple, Buffalo’s quarterback Drew Willy connected with Naaman Roosevelt for a 35 yard touchdown on the last play of the game to knock off the Owls. In that game Willy threw for 348 total yards.
#6 LSU (2-0) @ #10 Auburn (3-0)
Time: 7:45pm ET
Spread: LSU -3
Preview: What a contrast in last week's results for these two big time Southeastern Conference powerhouse squads. The Auburn Tigers are coming off a narrow 3-2 win over the Mississippi State Bulldogs on the road on Saturday, while LSU completely blasted North Texas in 41-3 shellacking. For Auburn, in their three early season wins, they have allowed just 5 points a game, while scoring 21. On Saturday Wes Byrum’s 34 yard field goal midway through the second quarter was all the Tigers needed. Auburn will need the same defensive effort to keep pace with the high powered LSU offense. LSU has only played twice to start the 2008 campaign as their week two game was postponed on September 6th. In week one LSU ran over Appalachian State 41-13, and in week three beat North Texas 41-3. On Saturday, Charles Scott ran for 102 yards and two touchdowns to assist in the 216 total rushing yards for Louisiana State. With 5 SEC teams in the AP Top 10, this game will be a true test in determining how these premier squads will survive the rugged SEC schedule.
Rice (2-1) @ #7 Texas (2-0)
Time: 7:00pm ET
Spread: Texas -28
Preview: The Texas Longhorns have put up two lopsided scores to start the 2008 season. With 52-10, and 42-13 wins over Florida Atlantic and UTEP, the Longhorns face one two final non conference foes before the Big 12 slate begins. The Longhorns are led by quarterback Colt McCoy who has put up 504 passing yards on 44 of 58, and seven touchdowns. He has also put up 111 rushing yards on just 17 carries. For Rice, after winning in weeks one and two over Southern Methodist and Memphis, a week three defeat on the road at Vanderbilt messed their chances up of heading to Austin undefeated. The Owls are led by quarterback Chase Clement, who has completed 75 of 120 passes for 875 yards, and eight touchdowns. There will be plenty of aerial firing on Saturday night in Texas.
#9 Alabama (3-0) @ Arkansas (2-0)
Time: 12:30pm ET
Spread: Alabama –9.5
Preview: Razorback Stadium will be jammed pack on Saturday for a battle between two undefeated SEC squads. Arkansas is coming off the bye week, in which they needed after two rough, tough narrow victories. With wins over Western Illinois 28-24, and Louisiana-Monroe 28-27, the Razorbacks have not exactly set the world on fire. This Saturday will be a great test for Bobby Petrino’s squad. For Alabama, in their first three games, all blowout victories, the Crimson Tide have scored 95 points, while only allowing 23 on the year. Alabama’s two running backs have combined for nearly 500 yards on just 75 carries to start the season. Arkansas quarterback Casey Dick has been sacked eight times in two games for the Razorbacks.
Massachusetts (2-1) @ #11 Texas Tech (3-0)
Time: 7:00pm ET
Preview: The Red Raiders will face one final non conference test before beginning the grueling schedule of the Big 12 conference. Three of the next four games for Texas Tech will be on the road. Texas Tech has won their first three games by an average of 25.3 points per game. In those three wins the Red Raiders have scored 127 points. Things couldn’t get closer for their opponent, the Minutemen of Massachusetts. In their three games, UMass has scored 111 points, while allowing 110. Wins over Albany and Holy Cross got UMass off to a good start, but last Saturday they fell 52-38 on the road at James Madison. Quarterback Liam Coen has thrown nine touchdowns and one interception in his first three ballgames.
#12 South Florida (-) @ Florida International (0-2)
Time: 5:00pm ET
Spread: South Florida -28
Preview: The Florida International Golden Panthers’ have not had an easy start to the 2008 season. Their first two games have been at Kansas and at Iowa, both big conference schools. The Jayhawks blasted them 40-10 in week one, and the Hawkeyes knocked them off 42-0. FIU is coming off a bye week. The South Florida Bulls passed their first big test last week on Friday, coming away with a 37-34 win over then #13 Kansas. In that game freshman kicker, Maikon Bonani kicked a 43 yard field goal just as the time expired to win the ball game. This is the first of two straight road games for the Bulls, who will travel to North Carolina State next before beginning their Big East schedule.
Troy (2-0) @ #13 Ohio State (2-1)
Time: 12:00pm ET
Spread: Ohio State -21
Preview: The Ohio State Buckeyes are going to have a chip on their shoulder come Saturday. After the 35-3 drubbing at the hands of USC, head coach Jim Tressel has a full week to get his running back Beanie Wells healthy and get his Buckeyes ready for week four, their last test before the Big Ten schedule begins. Ohio State only ran for 71 yards on 34 carries on Saturday. The Troy Trojans come into this ball game with a 2-0 record, and an average of 48 points a game on the board. With wins over Middle Tennessee State, and Alcorn State, their week two game with LSU was postponed due to the Hurricane that passed through Louisiana. Troy quarterback Jamie Hampton has completed 43 passes on 65 attempts, compiling 459 yards, including five touchdowns.
Wyoming (2-1) @ #14 Brigham Young (3-0)
Time: 3:00pm ET
Spread: BYU -28
Preview: The Brigham Young Cougars were doubted after the narrow escape win over Washington. It appears all the question marks were answered with their 59-0 blowout win over UCLA on Saturday. The Cougars led 42-0 at halftime, and did not look back en route to the victory. In that game, quarterback Max Hall threw for seven touchdowns on 271 yards. For the year Hall has thrown for 1095 yards, and 12 touchdowns in just three games. Wyoming comes in 2-1 with two narrow victories over Ohio and North Dakota State, and week two defeat at the hands of Air Force (23-3). The Cowboys prefer a defensive style game, so their contrast to the BYU high-powered offense will make for an interest affair on Saturday.
#15 East Carolina (3-0) @ North Carolina State (1-2)
Time: 12:00pm ET
Spread: East Carolina –7.5
Preview: The East Carolina Pirates continue to roll through the start of their 2008 season. With wins over ranked opponents in Virginia Tech, and West Virginia, and then a road victory at Tulane, the Pirates have climbed up inside the top 15. East Carolina sits atop the Conference USA standings with their win at Tulane. They will step out of the conference for this battle with an ACC squad in North Carolina State. The Wolfpack have gotten off to a slow start getting blanked at South Carolina 34-0, defeating William and Mary 34-24, and then getting beat at Clemson 27-9. This game with East Carolina is the first of three games against ranked opponents in the next four weeks. Home games with South Florida and Florida State remain for NC State.
Temple (-) @ #16 Penn State (3-0)
Time: 12:00pm ET
Spread: Penn State -28
Preview: Penn State has scored 166 points in their first three games; an average of 55.3 points per game. They have also only allowed 37, which is an average of 12.3. Temple comes in 1-2, after their season opening win over Army, the Owls have dropped two straight- to Connecticut and Buffalo. In Saturday’s loss to Buffalo, the Owls allowed a 35 yard touchdown pass as time expired to lose the ball game. For the Nittany Lions, wins over Coastal Carolina, Oregon State, and Syracuse have all been blowout victories, so Penn State has not been tested late. This is the last non conference game for the Nittany Lions before they host Illinois, and then go on the road to Purdue and Wisconsin, where things will assuredly get tougher for Joe Paterno’s squad.
Boise State (2-0) @ #17 Oregon (3-0)
Time: 3:30pm ET
Spread: Oregon -11
Preview: The Boise State Broncos are off to another good start as a non-major BCS conference school. They will face a huge test going on the road to an upper tier Pac Ten Oregon Ducks squad. Boise State has scored 69 points, and allowed 14 in their first two games- both wins, over Idaho State and Bowling Green. The Ducks, who struggled in the first half at Purdue on Saturday used a LeGarrette Blount two yard touchdown run in the second over time to win the game 32-26. Blount ended the afternoon with 120 yards, and two touchdowns on just ten carries. After the first 15:04 of the game, Oregon outscored Purdue 29-6. Quarterback Justin Roper has completed 40 of 77 passes for the Ducks, compiling 484 yards and two touchdowns, but has thrown four interceptions. The Ducks hope Roper can keep the ball away from the defense, to avoid the upset at home.
#18 Wake Forest (2-0) @ #24 Florida State (2-0)
Time: 7:00pm ET
Spread: Florida State -4
Preview: In an early season marquee ACC match-up, the Florida State Seminoles come in as a 4 point favorite. FSU has crept into the top 25 after wins over Western Carolina and Chattanooga, in which they scored 115 points, while only allowing 7. Quarterback Christian Ponder has completed 24 of 39 passes for 376 yards and six touchdowns in the early going of the 2008 season. The 6’2 Ponder is in his first year as the starting quarterback for Bobby Bowden’s squad. Their opponent, the Wake Forest Demon Deacons have been in the top 25 since the beginning. After a bye week, the Demon Deacons will assuredly be ready for FSU. With wins over Baylor on the road and Mississippi at home, Wake Forest looks to get off to a good start inside the ACC conference race.
Sam Houston State (1-0) @ #19 Kansas (2-1)
Time: 7:00pm ET
Preview: The Jayhawks had their shot in pulling an upset on the road at South Florida last Friday, but were not able to come through late. Kansas looks to bounce back against a Sam Houston State team that has not played since August 28th, a 58-14 win over East Central. Kansas quarterback Todd Reesing has completed 103 passes on 141 attempts and over 1000 yards and nine touchdowns. Running back Angus Quigley has carried the ball 24 times for 153 yards, but has not gotten himself into the end zone yet this season. For Sam Houston State, the Bearkats 44 point victory in week one may have been a good start, but it doesn’t appear the competition level of East Central will be near that of the level of the Jayhawks.
#20 Utah (3-0) @ Air Force (3-0)
Time: 4:00pm ET
Spread: Utah –7.5
Preview: This game is a battle between two unbeaten, and under rated football teams out West. The Utah Utes come in ranked #20 in the nation after three straight victories, including wins over Michigan, UNLV and Utah State. The Utes are averaging 41.5 points per game, while just allowing 18. For Air Force, they have knocked off Southern Utah, and then Wyoming and Houston on the road. The Falcons have done it with defense, just allowing 38 points in three games. Air Force is 0-16 since 2001 when scoring less than 20 points, so the Falcons hope to put points on the board, but the Utes have been solid in the same period of time when 30 or more points are scored, going 37-5 in those games.
#25 Fresno State (1-1) @ Toledo (1-1)
Time: 8:15pm ET
Spread: Fresno State –6.5
Preview: After a tough battle on Saturday, in which the Bulldogs fell to Big Ten Wisconsin, Fresno State will cross the country and take on the Toledo Rockets. Fresno State had plenty of chances on Saturday to knock off the Badgers, but couldn’t quite come up with the big play. For Fresno State, quarterback Tom Brandstater has had a little difficulty completing passing, completing just 26 of 51 passes for 441 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. His passing game will have to improve if the Bulldogs want to creep back into the BCS bowl game pictures. For Toledo, after a 41-16 drubbing at the hands of Arizona, they bounced back well with a 41-17 win over Eastern Michigan. Running back DaJuane Collins has ran for over 220 yards and two touchdowns.