Sept. 13, 3:30, RSN
Here's The Deal:
In what would be a compelling Final Four matchup, Kansas and Duke will meet on grass in an important game for both football programs. The Blue Devils are halfway to sweeping a cushy non-conference schedule before the ACC slate begins. Duke wants to fine-tune the overall process after allowing Troy to hang around for almost three quarters. The Jayhawks opened with a win over Southeast Missouri State in a game that was a little more comfortable than the 34-28 final score indicated.
Why Kansas Might Win:
So far, so good for Charlie Weis’ offense, which snapped off 24 points in the opening quarter of the season. Montell Cozart threw three touchdown passes, and a pair of transfers, RB De’Andre Mann and WR Nick Harwell, were instant impact performers. Duke will continue to miss heart-and-soul LB Kelby Brown.
Why Duke Might Win:
Kansas’ fourth-quarter defensive breakdowns will carry over into this weekend’s game. While the Jayhawks boast a few individual stars, LB Ben Heeney and CB Dexter McDonald, the unit isn’t built to shut down quality offenses. Duke QB Anthony Boone will build on a great effort against Troy, with plenty of help from receivers Jamison Crowder and Issac Blakeney.
Who To Watch Out For:
Brown is borderline indispensable, but the rest of the Blue Devils have been picking up the slack on defense. David Helton has taken charge of the linebackers, Jordan DeWalt-Ondijo has sparked the pass rush and DBs Devon Edwards and Jeremy Cash will cause fits for Cozart.
What’s Going To Happen:
Kansas has some interesting individual parts with which Weis and his staff can tinker. However, there isn’t nearly enough depth or consistency in Lawrence for the Jayhawks to topple a well-coach Duke squad in Durham. The Blue Devils will win the turnover battle—and the game by at least a couple of touchdowns.
Prediction: Duke 38 … Kansas 21