What To Watch: Week 2

By September 10, 2022 (8:00 am)Football

An exciting first week of college football has given way to a somewhat underwhelming slate of games in the second week of the season. Just three ranked matchups are on the schedule this week, with most other AP Top 25 teams participating in less-than-noteworthy non-conference games.

That doesn’t mean there isn’t anything exciting, though. Take a look at some of the top games gracing the schedule on Saturday:

No. 1 Alabama at Texas (12 p.m., FOX): This one looked a whole lot better when it was scheduled in 2018, right? Since that series was scheduled – Texas will play at Alabama next year in a game that I’m sure will go well for the Longhorns – Texas has gone just 31-19, while Alabama is 52-5 with a national championship.

The Crimson Tide looked dominant in the first week of the season, shutting out Utah State 55-0, while the Longhorns beat Louisiana-Monroe 52-10 in Quinn Ewers’ debut as the starter. Alabama is currently projected as a 20-point favorite over Texas, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see the final deficit go beyond that.

No. 24 Tennessee at No. 17 Pittsburgh (3:30 p.m., ABC): Tennessee and Pittsburgh both put on a show in the first week of the season, dominating Ball State, 59-10, and defeating West Virginia, 38-31, respectively.

The Volunteers – led by quarterback Hendon Hooker and running back Jabari Smalls – will enter Acrisure Stadium and face Pittsburgh’s vaunted defense that allowed just 23.6 points last year, though West Virginia certainly took advantage in the first week with 31 points and 404 yards of total offense.

USC transfer Kedon Slovis dominated for the Panthers against the Mountaineers, finishing 16 of 24 for 308 yards and a touchdown. Regardless of who comes out on top, it should be a high-scoring matchup.

Iowa State at Iowa (4 p.m., BTN): This is the first time that both Iowa State and Iowa are unranked entering this rivalry game since the 2018 season, and for good reason. The Hawkeyes stumbled to a 7-3 win over FCS-level South Dakota State, requiring two safeties to pull out the win at home.

Iowa State is still somewhat of an unknown this season having to replace quarterback Brock Purdy and running back Breece Hall, but that element of surprise could help the Cyclones defeat Iowa for the first time since 2014.

No. 20 Kentucky at No. 12 Florida (7 p.m., ESPN): The is one of three ranked matchups this week, and a surprise one, at that. Florida handled business in the first week against then-No. 7 Utah, pulling out a 29-26 win in The Swamp, and jumped all the way from unranked to the No. 12 team in the country.

Gator quarterback Anthony Richard threw for just 168 yards on 24 attempts but rushed 11 times for 106 yards and three touchdowns. Kentucky had a subdued 37-13 win over Miami (Ohio) to begin the season, so this could be a fairly even matchup that could go a long way in determine the SEC’s East Division.

No. 9 Baylor at No. 21 BYU (10:15 p.m., ESPN): One of the latest games on the schedule should be one of the best. Baylor – fresh off a Big 12 title – dominated Albany in the opener by a score of 69-10, while BYU turned in a solid performance in a 50-21 win over South Florida.

Both quarterbacks had successful outings, with Baylor’s Blake Shapen going 17 of 20 for 214 yards and two touchdowns, while BYU’s Jaren Hall finished 25 of 32 for 261 yards and two scores. The Cougars will be looking for revenge this season, as the Bears won last year by a score of 38-24, one of just three losses for BYU.

Other notable games on the schedule include:

  • No. 23 Wake Forest at Vanderbilt (12 p.m., SECN)
  • South Carolina at No. 16 Arkansas (12 p.m., ESPN)
  • Arkansas State at No. 3 Ohio State (12 p.m., BTN)
  • Marshall at No. 8 Notre Dame (2:30 p.m., NBC/Peacock)
  • App State at No. 6 Texas A&M (3:30 p.m., ESPN2)
  • Washington State at No. 19 Wisconsin (3:30 p.m., FOX)
  • Virginia at Illinois (4 p.m., ESPNU)
  • No. 25 Houston at Texas Tech (4 p.m., FS1)
  • Akron at No. 14 Michigan State (4 p.m., BTN)
  • No. 10 USC at Stanford (7:30 p.m., ABC)
  • Arizona State at No. 11 Oklahoma State (7:30 p.m., ESPN2)
  • Hawaii at No. 4 Michigan (8 p.m., BTN)
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