We are now under four weeks away from another season of college football and fans around the country are starting to take notice of the first slate of games. Below are my predictions for some of the biggest games that week one has to offer.
Tennessee vs West Virginia (Charlotte)
This is one of the most intriguing matchups in week one as it pits two teams with plenty of uncertainty on defense against each other. Will Grier will kick off his Heisman campaign as he gashes Tennessee’s inexperienced corners in a big way. Stanford transfer Keller Chryst will do enough to keep the Volunteers in it early on, but the Mountaineers should run away with this one in the second half.
Prediction: West Virginia 42, Tennessee 27
Louisville vs Alabama (Orlando)
The post Lamar Jackson era will get off to a rocky start in Orlando as the Cardinals run into an absolute buzzsaw in Alabama. Alabama once again possess an elite defense littered with NFL caliber talent. On the other side of the football, Tua Tagovailoa and company should have no issue with Louisville’s defense.
Prediction: Alabama 49, Louisville 14
Washington vs Auburn (Atlanta)
The Last time Auburn was in Atlanta, they lost a heartbreaker to “National Champions” UCF. Meanwhile, for Washington, Jake Browning is itching to pick apart an Auburn secondary that lost three key players. Furthermore, if there is any running back to pick apart stout rush defenses it’s Myles Gaskin. Gaskin is one of the most underrated backs in the country and will be looking to break out in a big way. This game is going to be very close wire to wire and ultimately, whichever team makes the fewest mistakes will come out on top. Washington will pull out a close one down south, adding another impressive win to Coach Petersen’s resume.
Prediction: Washington 27, Auburn 20
Michigan at Notre Dame
Jim Harbaugh and company look to right the ship after a less than impressive 2017 campaign. The Wolverines have a chance early on to put their stamp on the season and solidify themselves in the playoff race. Meanwhile, Notre Dame has to replace one of the most talented offensive lines in the nation. A young line and uncertainty at the quarterback position could spell trouble against a Michigan defense that returns almost all of its starters from one of the nation’s most elite units. Due to inexperience among both offenses coupled with talented defenses, this game will be a slugfest. Expect Michigan to pull out a tough road win at night in South Bend.
Prediction: Michigan 24, Notre Dame 13
Miami vs LSU (Arlington)
The Canes are coming off one of their best seasons in recent memory which has many believing that The U is back. LSU added Ohio State transfer Joe Burrow who is without a doubt talented, but playing against a tough Miami defense after having limited time to work with your offense is a tall task to ask of any quarterback. Mark Richt is building a talented squad in South Florida and now that he’s starting to pull in his own recruits, this team could be downright scary. A potent mixture of a lethal defense combined with a serviceable offense makes the Hurricanes the obvious choice here.