Mark Edwards' picks: AU should improve to 2-0; JSU will win
by Mark Edwards
medwards@annistonstar.com
Sep 06, 2013 | 2718 views |  0 comments | 45 45 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Auburn coach Gus Malzahn has his team within a victory of a national title. (Photo by Bill Wilson/The Anniston Star)
Auburn coach Gus Malzahn has his team within a victory of a national title. (Photo by Bill Wilson/The Anniston Star)
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Auburn faces another high-octane offense, while Jacksonville State plays at home for the first time under first-year coach Bill Clark.

We’re going with the Tigers, even though Arkansas State likely will score a few points. We’re going with JSU, too, even though Jacksonville is a pretty good team, especially considering the school doesn’t award football scholarships.

Arkansas State (1-0) at Auburn (1-0): ASU is coming off a 62-11 win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff. The Wolves rolled up all those points by the end of the third quarter. They had 672 yards.

Even a rebuilding Auburn squad has enough athletes to win this one, although it won’t be a blowout. … Auburn 38, Arkansas State 31.

Jacksonville (0-1) at Jacksonville State (1-0): Jacksonville lost to FCS power Delaware in its opener 51-35, though Kerwin Bell’s squad managed only 224 yards. Even so, Jacksonville is traditionally a strong offensive team.

JSU rebounded from a rough start offensively in last week’s 24-22 win at Alabama State.

Max Shortell played well in relief at quarterback, and Eli Jenkins should show more as he recovers from an injured hand. … Jacksonville State 31, Jacksonville 24.

UAB (0-1) at No. 9 LSU (1-0): The Bengal Tigers haven’t lost a non-conference regular-season game since 2002. UAB has beaten LSU before. It happened in 2000 when the Blazers knocked off a team coached by Nick Saban, proving he isn’t perfect. That also was the last time a non-conference team beat the Bengal Tigers in Tiger Stadium. … LSU 48, UAB 14.

Sam Houston State (1-0) at No. 7 Texas A&M (1-0): This is the warmup before next week’s Alabama-Texas A&M rematch. Johnny Manziel tossed three touchdown passes in one half of play last week against Rice, but the Aggies’ offense didn’t look bad with backup Matt Joeckel behind center. A&M leads this series 11-0. … Texas A&M 60, Sam Houston State 21.

No. 6 South Carolina (1-0) at No. 11 Georgia (0-1): Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier is 15-5 against Georgia, including 4-4 while at South Carolina. The Gamecocks have won the last three straight, although Georgia has overcome that the past two years to win the division.

Offense isn’t a problem for Georgia, but defense is, having allowed nearly 500 yards last week to Clemson. … Georgia 31, South Carolina 29.

No. 12 Florida (1-0) at Miami (1-0): They’re rivals, even though they haven’t played since 2008 (a Florida 26-3 victory) and don’t have any more games scheduled for the future. A win would put the Hurricanes back in the national conversation, but Florida is seventh nationally in total defense. … Florida 24, Miami 17.

No. 14 Notre Dame (1-0) at No. 17 Michigan (1-0): Notre Dame won this matchup last year 13-6 by forcing six turnovers.

Michigan should be a little more settled this time, but so should Notre Dame with Tommy Rees at quarterback. He contributed three touchdown passes and no interceptions last week against Temple. … Notre Dame 23, Michigan 21.

Eastern Kentucky (1-0) at No. 8 Louisville (1-0): Eastern Kentucky is ranked No. 21 in the most recent FCS coaches poll but hasn’t beaten an FBS team since defeating Louisville in 1985. … Louisville 45, Eastern Kentucky 21.

Western Kentucky (1-0) at Tennessee (1-0): Western Kentucky beat Kentucky a week ago and gave Alabama a hard time for a while last season. This isn’t a cupcake team. First-year Vols starting quarterback Justin Worley threw three touchdown passes last week against Austin Peay, while Rajion Neal rushed for 141 yards. … Tennessee 27, Western Kentucky 22.

Samford (1-0) at Arkansas (1-0): The Razorbacks have returned to being a power team, having rushed for 292 yards last week against Louisiana-Lafayette. … Arkansas 34, Samford 16.

No. 2 Oregon (1-0) at Virginia (1-0): Oregon hasn’t lost to a team playing on its own field since falling at Stanford in 2009.

Last week, Oregon burned Nicholls 66-3, rolling up 500 rushing yards and 272 passing. The Ducks always seem to look like world beaters until near the end of the season when they play somebody who is bigger and just as fast. … Oregon 52, Virginia 28.

Last week: 9-1.

Overall: 9-1.
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