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Week 1 Football Predictions, 9/4/2010 and 9/5/2010

For those who are interested - here's my selection of picks for tomorrow's and Sunday's Division I FCS games being played. For the record, I'm a perfect 8-0 in games that I've picked so far - a record that will be broken tomorrow without doubt.  (more)




Saturday
Picking the Sports Network Top 25

Western State (D-II) at No. 2. Montana.  It would be fun to think of the No. 2 team in the country being pushed to the limit by tiny Western State, but I don't see them holding back RB Chase Reynolds enough to win this game.  Western State is not as bad as their 45-20 loss to Fort Hays State last week, but they're not good enough to get a Grizzly pelt.

Do Not Feed The Griz 35, Chase Reynolds Out Their Ears 13

No. 3 Appalachian State at Chattanooga. "Restore the Glory" is the mantra of Chattanooga head coach Russ Huesman and the Mocs in 2010, and senior OL Chris Harr could not be more jacked than to open the season against the perennial big dogs of the SoCon in a "White-out" game that has the entire city of Chattanooga buzzing.  And make no mistake, this is a genuine trap game for the Mountaineers, who are breaking in a semi-new quarterback in QB De'Andre Presley.  All signs point to a November-like feel in a season-opening game - and the team with more experience will win the game.  That team, my friends, is the home team.

Twenty-Two Thousand White-Clad Moc Fans Can't be Wrong 35, Trapped App 34

No. 4 William & Mary at UMass.  Speaking of brutal, important season openers, what about this CAA matchup between one of last year's FCS semifinalists and a perennial playoff participant?  With RB Jonathan Grimes running the ball and a monster defense led by LB Jake Trantin, Jimmye Laycock's Tribe are a handful - but UMass are no slouches by any measure either, with RB John Griffin and LB Tyler Holmes anchoring a young, but still relatively solid, unit.  Can the Minutemen win the home opener?  It will be close - but I think the Tribe are just a tiny bit too tough for the Minutemen.

Going Tribal 20, Piked Mass 16

No. 6 Richmond at Virginia (FBS).  A positively Shakespearean start for new Virginia head football coach Mike London.  When we last left London, his chance at repeating as FCS champion was taken away by QB Armanti Edwards in a 35-31 playoff defeat.  Days later, he left to become the new Cavalier head coach - and finds himself playing the team he built, that he brought to the championship, in his first game as head coach.  Virginia needs a serious rebuilding effort - and Richmond, with a lot of defensive talent including LB Eric McBride, will be no easy out.  But I know Mike London.  He will not overlook his former team, and he will not lose his first game as Virginia head coach.

London Calling 27, McBride's Not Going... To Win 13

No. 7 Elon at Duke.  Duke head coach David Cutliffe knows FCS.  That's because he was victimized last year by Richmond - 24-16, in a game which wasn't really that close.  Can Pete Lembo's Elon Phoenix, led by Payton Award candidate QB Scott Riddle, upset them this time around?  While Duke is better than last year, if it comes down to experience at QB, Riddle, a four-year starter, is as experienced as they come.  Add Elon's underrated defense, led by LB Brandon Wiggins, can certainly make this a game.  The Phoenix will - and they'll win the game.

Riddle Me Lembo's First FBS Upset 31, FCS Cuts Like A Knife 27

No. 8 Stephen F. Austin at Texas A&M (FBS).  I like QB Jeremy Moses as much as the next guy, but not against QB Jerrod Johnson and an Aggie team that will not let the upset happen.

Shaggy Aggies 56, Purple Moses Majesty 29

Central Connecticut State at No. 10 New Hampshire.  Think this will be a cupcake game?  Think again.  While New Hampshire, led on defense by DB Dino Vasso will be solid all around, the Blue Devils, led by guys like SS Alondre Rush, have a solid, cagy team of their own.  Could Jeff McInerney's squad pull off the upset?  They'll fall just short - but they'll give New Hampshire everything they could bargain for.

Wildcats, Meet The Wildcats 25, Fools Rush The Blue Devils 24

No. 11 South Carolina State at Georgia Tech (FBS).  The Bulldogs have the tools to be a quality FCS team, but not this week against Georgia Tech with returning QB Joshua Nesbitt.  Buddy Pough's team will be a team that needs to break in some players quickly, and it will show.

Yellowjacket Yowza 40, Buddy Ball Needs Some Blockers 10

Morehead State at No. 15 James Madison.  Mickey Matthews' team is No. 15 in the nation, and has a bunch of hogs on his offensive line that probably collectively wiegh as much as a Chevy Volt.  Morehead State went 2-8 last year and starts sophomore QB Zach Lewis.  Survey says...

Mickey Drives A Chevy Volt? 55, Near-Extinct Eagles 3

No. 17 Jacksonville State at Ole Miss (FBS).  QB Jeremiah Masoli, Oregon's former QB who was dismissed from the team for "violation of team rules" (or, put in another way, being caught for committing burglary), shows up at... Ole Miss, who shows that they are willing to stoop to no level low enough to win football games.  "I will tell you this – they will end up with the best quarterback and defensive line in the conference," Gamecock head coach Jack Crowe regaled reporters with this week.  He's not kidding.  That should also tell you something about Jacksonville State's chances.

Darth Miss 45, Black Eye for Crowe 7

No. 18 Eastern Illinois at Iowa (FBS).  What is it this week with FBS teams that got beat, or almost got beat, last year?  Iowa came one play away from dropping to Northern Iowa last year, and now they invite Eastern Illinois head coach Bob Spoo to town to play the Panthers.  But without their best player on offense, RB Mon Williams, Spoo will be hard pressed to beat the nationally-ranked Hawkeyes.

Io-Winners 49, Spoo's Men 7

No. 19 Weber State at Boston College (FBS).  If you're an FCS fan, you know all about Wildcat QB Cameron Higgins, who is a fantastic player.  You probably don't know as much about Boston College... and their "O" line that averages 313 pounds across... and their 26 year old sophomore QB.  Weber will be fine after their shellacking three time zones away from their home, but a shellacking it will be by the Eagles.

Tootie Fluties 52, Grill Masters 26

St Francis (PA) at Liberty.  Danny Rocco's squad will be enjoying the coming-out party of QB Mike Brown, who played once at quarterback last year and proved to be a revelation.  St. Francis welcomes a new head coach Chris Villareal taking over a 2-9 team, and they're hoping he's a revelation.  My advice: Go with the Flame you know.

What Can Liberty Do For You? 44, Got To Be Villareal 13

Fort Lewis (D-II) at No. 24 Montana State.  Forgive me, but could this be the most boring Top 25 picks ever made?  Have there been any epic upsets?   Biter defeats?  Well, yes, but that's not the point - where are the huge D-II over D-I upsets?  if you're for the Bobcats, led on offense by WR Elvis Akpla, to be the shocking upset victim, look somewhere else.  It will be closer than some think, but the Bobcats should still win comfortably.

Elvis Isn't Leaving the Building Anytime Soon 29, Sky-High Hawks 17

Sunday
No. 20 Prairie View A&M at Texas Southern.  (Labor Day Classic, Reliant Park, Houston, TX) I used to be against big conference rivalries on the first week of the season; I've completely changed my mind about them.  Bring on the SWAC classics, the barbeques, the bands, the bitter hatred, the crosstown rivalries... the more, the merrier.  Texas Southern QB Arvell Nelson will be one to watch in this game, but I'm a big fan of QB K.J. Black and a Prairie View team that returns an awful lot from last year.

Three Day Weekend For Prairie View 31, Labor Pains for Texas Southern 20

Welcome Back To to FCS
Lamar at No. 12 McNeese State.  When Old Dominion came back to football after a long hiatus, they chose Chowan, an awful D-II school, as their home opener.  Georgia State's home opener this past week was against Shorter, an NAIA school that just started football five short years ago.  Lamar?  They choose to play the biggest dog in their neighborhood, perennial Southland title contender McNeese State, in their return to the gridiron.  For this act of bravery, Lamar head coach Ray Woodard should receive a large pair of brass balls - deservedly, I have to beleive.  That said, McNeese QB Jacob Bower should have a field day as Lamar gets reacquainted with football - the hard way.

Crystal Bower Balls 55, Woodard's Brass Balls 0


BONUS PICKS:
Langston (NAIA) over Alcorn State
Montana-Western (NAIA) over Idaho State
Tennessee State over Alabama A&M
Wyoming (FBS) over Southern Utah - by less than 10 points
UC Davis over Cal (FBS) 
Southern over Delaware State (MEAC/SWAC Challenge)

Comments

Douglas said…
UT-Chat is making every effort to blow the game after having a 3 TD lead at the beginning of the 4th quarter... Catching it before Lehigh-Drake game on FCS... Game looks like Arena style

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