Illinois at Rutgers (-11):
Brad: The Illini looked pretty good in dismantling an overmatched EIU squad, but there are still a lot of questions on the defensive side of the ball. The three-headed monster of Thomas, Mendenhall, and Halsey have to dominate the clock if the Illini want to win. Rice, Leonard, and Clark Harris are probably the three best players on either side. That, plus the home field give RU the edge. Look for a tight game for a half or so, but expect the Knights to pull away late. Rutgers 36, Illinois 21.
Brumby: As much as I would like to see at Illinois victory, I just cannot predict it here. In fact, I think the smart money here is to take Rutgers laying the points. Illinois will extend their road losing streak to 15 Saturday in New Jersey. Rutgers 38, Illinois 17.
Ohio State at Texas (-2.5):
Brad: #1 vs. #2. That says it all. The Longhorns dominated an undermanned North Texas squad last week, and QB Colt McCoy got his feet wet in a strong debut. Now we'll see what he's really made of. The Buckeyes lost nine defensive starters, but talent abounds nonetheless. Plus, having Ted Ginn and Troy Smith on your side always helps. As of this writing, tickets are going for nothing less than $400. Here's hoping I can find one for much lower than that, as games like this are why college football is the best game there is. Ohio State 27, Texas 23.
Brumby: Colt McCoy is a great football name, but is he a great football player? Mack Brown has stated that if it came to it, he is not afraid to put in another quarterback if McCoy struggles. I think Texas is the better team here, and being at home in Austin, I think the Longhorns are going to be able to defeat Ohio State in what will be the best pre-season game in college football this year. Texas 21, Ohio State 20.
Penn State at Notre Dame (-8):
Brad: God was displeased with his teams effort last week, so expect Him (and Charlie Weiss, too) to put the hammer down this week. The Nittany Lions have no shot in the Domers home opener. Notre Dame 31, Penn State 17.
Brumby: The Notre Dame game is on NBC this week, that can only mean the Golden Domers are at home. As much as I would like to see Joe Paterno and his coke bottle glasses come into South Bend and pull the upset, I don't think it is going to happen. Notre Dame rolls through this game and engraving starts on Brady Quinn's Heisman Trophy after Saturday's performance. Notre Dame 42, Penn State 20.
Minnesota at California (-8.5):
Brad: The Bears may have spent a little too much time enjoying their mythical perch atop Lee Corso's world and too little time preparing for a determined Tennessee squad. Look for the focus to be back this week as they meet the Gophers, who are - gasp!- playing a legitimate college football team in the pre-season for the first time since perhaps the Bronko Nagurski era. After Saturday, they'll wish they hadn't been so bold. California 36, Minnesota 17.
Brumby: Wait a minute is this the Minnesota Golden Gophers playing a real team before conference play? OK, who told Glen Mason that he was scheduling Cal Tech and not Cal Berkley when he signed this contract? I am just not a fan of the Cal Bears and Jeff Tedford this season. I have a feeling this game is going to be closer than Brad thinks, but because the Gophers are seeing something foreign to them in September (a road game), Cal squeaks by the Gophers. California 31, Minnesota 28.
Colorado State vs. Colorado (+2):
Brad: Wow. Dan Hawkins probably wanted to walk all the way back to Boise after an embarrassing 19-10 loss to Montana State in his CU debut. Things get no easier as their intra-state rivals are next up. The Rams usually give the Buffs a battle. A wounded animal, they say, is the most dangerous, and these Buffaloes are as wounded as can be. Colorado 24, Colorado State 19.
Brumby: Even Boise State wouldn't have lost to Montana State, and Dan Hawkins knows it. The Buffaloes are just bad this season, I guess with the team no longer getting to have their recruiting parties, the talent level has fallen. Look for the Rams to cover, and win the game. Colorado State 24, Colorado 21.
Week 2: Pick'Em
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