The beauty of sports, in particular college football, lies in their complete unpredictability and reality TV-like drama.
Last week, I claimed Mizzou would be the last unbeaten in the SEC East, Ole Miss would beat Texas worse than BYU and that AJ McCarron would out-pass Johnny Football. So far, so good. However, I also said the Big Ten would go 4-0 against the Pac-12, Andre Williams would outgain USC and that Vanderbilt's defensive line would play better than South Carolina's. Well, the Big Ten went 1-3 in those four and USC crushed Boston College.
Here are our outrageous Week 4 College Football predictions.
Note: The point of this column is to have some fun and make some outlandish predictions. Please react accordingly.
Texas will start 1-3 for the first time since 1956
Mack Brown is entering a critical game against arch-nemesis Bill Snyder and Kansas State this weekend. The Wildcats have won five straight over the Longhorns dating back to 2006 and Texas is 2-7 against KSU under Brown. After uncompetitive losses to BYU and Ole Miss, there is no reason to think Snyder’s squad won’t walk into Austin and win again. This would give Texas its worst start since 1956, when Edwin Price coached the Burnt Orange to a 1-9 mark.
Jeff Driskel will complete a pass longer than 50 yards
The Gator quarterback has played in 20 games in his career for Florida and in just two of those games has he completed a pass of more than 50 yards. Both of those games came early in the 2012 season in back-to-back weeks against Kentucky and, that’s right, Tennessee. In fact, his longest career pass of 75 yards came against the Vols last year and his 219 yards passing in that game was a career high until the loss to Miami (291 yards) earlier this month. With the Vols reeling on defense, look for Driskel to have his second coming out party.
Stefon Diggs will top 300 all-purpose yards
Maryland's Diggs is one of the most explosive and versatile players in the nation. He is 13th nationally with 176.7 yards per game — 387 receiving, 38 rushing and 105 on kickoffs in three contests. The Mountaineers are 77th in the nation in covering kicks and their inflated defensive statistics will surely return to normal after playing both Diggs and emerging star quarterback C.J. Brown.
Texas A&M will score 100 points
The Aggies are third nationally with 609.3 yards per game and fourth nationally at 53.0 points per game. Johnny Manziel is likely fuming over the seven-point loss to Alabama at home last Saturday and will take it out on this week's in-state opponent SMU. Through two games, the Mustangs are ranked 105th nationally in scoring defense (35.5 ppg) and 84th in total defense (419.5 ypg). I wouldn’t want to be the Pony Express this weekend.
Both Holy War quarterbacks will top 100 yards rushing
The best-named rivalry in college football — The Holy War — takes place this weekend in Provo and it will feature two of the most physically gifted quarterbacks in the nation. BYU’s Taysom Hill is 6-foot-2 and 220 pounds and is fifth in the nation in rushing (150.1 ypg) at an astounding 10.8 yards per carry. Utah’s Travis Wilson is even more imposing at 6-foot-6 and 240 pounds. Wilson is averaging 81.3 yards per game rushing at a 10.2-yard clip and has scored 12 total touchdowns. Best of luck to the linebackers trying to tackle nearly 500 pounds of dual-threat quarterback in this one.
Chuckie Keeton will throw more TD passes on Saturday than USC has all season
Max Wittek and Cody Kessler have completed just 43 passes in three games this season and just three of those have gone for touchdowns. Meanwhile, Keeton, Utah State’s star signal-caller and Heisman darkhorse, is averaging 3.0 TD passes per game after tossing five scoring strikes in each of the last two games. Don’t be shocked if Keeton’s right arm leads the Aggies to an upset over the Trojans.
Vad Lee will out pass Bryn Renner
North Carolina has a star quarterback with back-to-back 3,000-yard seasons under his belt and Larry Fedora calling the plays. Georgia Tech has the triple option. So how could it be that Lee would out-duel Renner? Because Vad Lee is no ordinary Paul Johnson quarterback. Lee threw four touchdown passes last week — a first for a quarterback under Johnson — only furthering the rumors that Lee is the most talented passer Johnson has ever coached. This was a 68-50 barnburner a year ago in Chapel Hill and the key Coastal Division elimination game could once again be an offensive showcase. However, it will be Lee, not Renner, who shines through the air this weekend.
Clemson won’t Clemson itself
“Clemsoning” isn’t defined by the Tigers losing marquee showdowns, it’s reserved for major upsets that everyone assume the Tigers will win. This week's visit to NC State is one of the dates many circled in the preseason as one of those potential "upset" games. But come Thursday night, Clemson will dominate. Two years ago, the last time Clemson played in Raleigh, the Wolfpack upset Clemson 37-13 after the Tigers had started the year 8-0. This one is too early in the year, the Tigers are coming off a bye and hung 62 points on NC State last season.