Inside College Football: Herm Edwards Impresses, the Legend of Bill Snyder & More

Week 1 Rewind

Top-25 Takeaways

*#20 Virginia Tech vs #19 Florida State: Everyone has that guy they went to high school with who spends every waking moment on Facebook proclaiming how he “is better than (insert athlete here).” He’s absolutely wrong 100% of the time. Buttttt Florida State’s offensive line was so bad in Monday night’s debacle that maybe he coulda given Willie Taggart a snap or two. He couldn’t have been any worse.

*Oregon State vs #5 Ohio State: A 77-31 win for the Buckeyes in football – not basketball – proved that interim head coach Ryan Day did his part in keeping his team focused amid the Zach Smith scandal that rocked the university and resulted in suspensions for AD Gene Smith and head coach Urban Meyer. It will be interesting to see if OSU can continue its dominance before Meyer’s return for Week 4.

*#6 Washington vs #9 Auburn: Six red-zone visits and only one touchdown for the Huskies? That kind of loss is guaranteed to stick with you AND be a thorn in your side in December when the College Football Playoff selection committee breaks down your résumé.

 

Week 2 Fast Forward

Upset Alert

Michigan State vs Arizona State (+6.5)

You play to win the game, which is exactly what Arizona State did during Saturday’s 49-7 thumping of UTSA. Heading into Week 2, new head coach Herm Edwards faces his first real challenge as the “CEO” of the Sun Devils: a visit from Mark Dantonio and #15 Michigan State. While Dantonio’s bunch needed a dramatic fourth-quarter comeback to knock off Utah State last week, the real surprise was to see how much MSU’s offensive line struggled against the Aggies.

Failing to control the line of scrimmage against a Mountain West opponent means that the Spartans will have their hands full with a talented ASU defense that’s consistently placed in a position to dominate thanks to innovative schemes from DC Danny Gonzales. Throw in the fact that Arizona State is 9-0 all-time against Big 10 teams in Tempe, and the Sun Devils have the recipe for a program-defining upset in the desert.

 

Coach’s Corner

Why is Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder the definition of a living legend?

  • A.) He’s one of the only college coaches to ever coach in a stadium that’s named after him.
  • B.) He transforms what feels like a roster full of 85 walk-ons into a Big 12 contender year in and year out.
  • C.) The 78-year-old has the 15th most wins by any coach in college football history.
  • D.) All of the above.

Obviously, it’s D. And that mix of mystique and consistency is exactly what makes Snyder one of the toughest coaches to prepare for in today’s college football landscape. If past matchups offer any indication, #18 Mississippi State will learn that the hard way when they take the field in Kansas on Saturday.

During Snyder’s tenure with the Wildcats, the school has only hosted a top-ranked nonconference opponent twice, resulting in a 27-20 victory over Pete Carroll and #11 USC in 2002 and a 20-14 loss to #5 Auburn in 2014. On the heels of Kansas State’s underwhelming 27-24 victory over South Dakota, expect for history to repeat itself this week with a focused Wildcats squad answering the call in another tightly-contested matchup. Don’t be shocked if Snyder manages to wrangle up more Manhattan magic in the fourth quarter to steal a win for his ‘Cats.

 

Tweet of the Week

https://twitter.com/Tim_Linafelt/status/1037776447660810240

 

Must-See Matchups

#3 Georgia vs #24 South Carolina

Saturday’s second wave of college football games is highlighted by an SEC clash between Kirby Smart’s Georgia Bulldogs and Will Muschamp’s South Carolina Gamecocks. The former college teammates matching wits is the obvious storyline, but how the young Bulldogs compete against USC’s talented roster is a development to keep an eye on.

#13 Penn State vs Pittsburgh

Appalachian State taking Penn State to overtime doesn’t fare well for Pitt’s chances to sneak up on the Nittany Lions, but don’t sleep on this rivalry game potentially turning into a barn-burner. Since being renewed in 2016, the “Keystone Classic” series is tied at 1-1. Quarterback play between Penn State’s Trace McSorley and Pitt’s Kenny Pickett will likely decide the rubber match.

#17 USC vs #10 Stanford

It’s not #Pac12AfterDark, but this showdown marks a quality battle between two of the West Coast’s top programs. The Trojans are riding a two-game win streak against the Cardinal, with one of those Ws coming in last year’s thrilling Pac-12 Championship Game, but Stanford hopes to end that trend. If preseason Heisman candidate Bryce Love can get back on track after rushing for 29 yards on 18 carries against San Diego State, the Cardinal should come away with a win.