The first week came and went, with a few surprises and some of the very expected.
Firstly, a brief look at the Top 25. No real changes. Oregon will have faced the biggest upset, reflected in their drop. Equally, Auburn’s climb up through the ranks to 10 will have been a large boost for them going forward.
The only other team that will feel a little unhappy may be the Florida Gators. Despite winning against Miami in what was an excellent game, they dropped three places. Though Miami do not feature in the top 25, they received 10 votes from the AP and 11 from the Coaches. A decent run of results may well yet see them break into the top 25 by the end of the year.
What we Learnt
Starting at the top, Trevor Lawrence had a very pedestrian performance this week, considering what has come to be expected of him. Throwing two interceptions against a Georgia team that doesn’t have the calibre of many of the opponents they faced last year, there’ll be a large expectation for Lawrence to pick himself up from this week. Travis Etienne though came away with a stellar performance. 205 yards and 3 TD’s is an incredible performance no matter the opponent. His electric 90 yard touchdown may have helped, but anything over 200 always catches attention.
Alabama punched Duke in the mouth and then continued to do so for the remainder of the game. When a team kicks a field goal to avoid a shut-out, you know that the next few weeks are going to be very difficult. Duke faces Middle Tennessee in week 3, so should be able to get back in the saddle quickly.
Notre Dame looked comfortable against Louisville. Having learnt from last year’s playoffs, no matter how good the Notre Dame performance, they are not to be taken seriously. Which is a shame, but that’s going to be my opinion for at least the next 5 years. Ian Book looked good, whilst the Notre Dame defence eventually remembered where it was and held the Louisville offence in check. With -2 turnover margin and only 143 overall yards, Louisville will want to show they aren’t the team that in 2018 had a staggering -12 margin.
Lastly, let’s talk Oregon and Auburn. Oregon lead 21-6 into the third quarter, when Auburn decided to put up 21 unanswered points. Unforgiveable at any level, especially for a team in the top 25. Auburn always take on a lot, but with 1 big SEC scalp on their belt, that may well sit in their favour as we progress through the season.
Big Games for the Weekend
The what to watch and when.
The Biggest Games of the Week:
Texas A&M (12) vs Clemson (1) – Saturday 20:30
Texas (9) vs LSU (6) – Sunday 00:30
Texas O linemen Jared Hocker has already called it, saying that the Aggies will upset Clemson. If you’re of the betting type, then I wouldn’t tempted to take my money away from Clemson. The Aggies did only allow Texas State to have 219 total yards of offense, but I still can’t honestly see them stifling Clemson in the same way. Add to that the game being in Death-Valley, the Aggies will truly be hoping that their fans travel well.
Texas Longhorns vs LSU may be a much better match up for this weekend. Both teams came away with strong performances in week 1. The Longhorns currently also sit at only the 4-point underdogs, which may fluctuate, but may go down.
This weekend is set to be a good test for a few teams, whilst others look to continue easing into the season. Army vs Michigan may well be another game worth keeping an eye on, given Army received a fair few votes in the AP and Coaches Poll.