No. 11 Georgia vs. No. 6 South Carolina
This one could go either way if the Bulldogs can erase their memories of their crushing loss against Clemson and bring back that same intensity and energy. The Gamecocks are coming off a dominating performance against North Carolina and may hold a morale advantage. Georgia will need to utilize Todd Gurley, who was named SEC Offensive Player of the Week, if they want to remain competitive.
No. 17 Michigan vs. No. 14 Notre Dame
This matchup will be both teams’ first real test this season, making it difficult to predict how this game will play out. Irish quarterback Tommy Rees had a big game taking over for the suspended Everett Golson, but it will be interesting to see how he handles leading this Notre Dame team when he’s in the spotlight and on the road in a hostile environment. Michigan still has much to prove. Can they beat a legitimate opponent and defend home field?
No. 12 Florida vs. Miami
Expect Florida to ground and pound with a solid (and now healthy) offensive line, controlling the momentum of the game by relying on Mack Brown, who ran for 112 yards and two touchdowns in the last game. Florida is also looking to develop quarterback Jeff Driskell into a more consistent player. What better way to do that then sending him on the road to play a tough in-state rival? The Miami defense will need a performance like they had last week, when they held Florida Atlantic to only two field goals, if they’re going to be able to compete with the Gators defense, which also allowed only two field goals last week.
No. 2 Oregon vs. Virginia
The Oregon Ducks demolished Nicholls State, winning by 63 points in their season opener, compared to Virginia’s modest 19-16 win against BYU. Although the Cavaliers came out of the game victorious, their offensive and defensive fronts have significant room for improvement, especially on the defensive end if they hope to slow down Oregon’s fast paced offense. Additionally, this game could be the debut of the highly-anticipated Oregon freshman Thomas Tyner, who was kept out of last Saturday’s game as a precaution.
No. 15 Texas vs. BYU
This game will be an interesting test for Texas, after handily beating an unproven New Mexico State team. This game also acts as a chance at redemption for BYU after a heartbreaking Week 1 loss to Virginia. If the Longhorns decide to play their first 28 minutes the way they did against the Aggies, it may not be as easy to recover. Cougars enior linebacker Kyle Van Noy will be a key for BYU’s defense. Locating and restricting him on every play while getting the ball to sophomore Daje Johnson, who proved to be the most dynamic option for the Longhorns last week, will need to be the Longhorns offense.