3 Up 3 Down (College Week 2)

By John Ewing
A review of the week that was with a look at three college football teams that stood out for good reasons and three whose weekends did not turn out as successfully as anticipated.

Three Up
Michigan Wolverines
2013 Record: Straight-Up 2-0, Against-the-Spread 2-0
Michigan defeated Notre Dame 41-30 in front of a record crowd of 115,109 people. The victory extends Michigan’s winning streak to four in a row over Notre Dame in the Big House, a record that may stand for a while.
Devin Gardner went Berzerk, 376 total yards & 5 touchdowns, accounting for every score when Michigan was in the red-zone. The Wolverines have scored a touchdown on 23-of-27 red-zone trips with Gardner at quarterback. Gardner has accounted for 19 of those touchdowns while committing zero turnovers (ESPN Stats & Info).
Next Up: The Akron Zips, a team that hasn’t won 2 games in a season since 2009
The total has gone over in 4 of Michigan’s last 5 games at home
The total has gone under in 5 of Akron’s last 5 games on the road, something's got to give.
Georgia Bulldogs
2013 Record: Straight-Up 1-1, Against-the-Spread 1-1
Saturday’s matchup against South Carolina was all about redemption for Georgia. The Bulldogs, coming off a 38-35 loss to Clemson, defeated the Gamecocks 41-30. It was the first win for Georgia over South Carolina in three years.
Dear God, how do you stop Clowney? For Heisman hopeful Aaron Murray this very question may have been on his mind before the game. Murray was 1-6 against teams ranked in the top-10 before leading the Bulldogs to the win. Before Saturday, Murray had only completed 50.5% of his passes for 8 touchdowns and 9 interceptions in those seven games (ESPN Stats & Info). Against Jadeveon Clowney and South Carolina on Saturday, Murray completed nearly 74% of his passes for 4 touchdowns.
Next Up: Georgia hosts North Texas
The total has gone over in 4 of Georgia’s last 5 games
North Texas is 1-5 against-the-spread in its last 6 games on the road
Miami Hurricanes
2013 Record: Straight-Up 2-0, Against-the-Spread 1-1
Miami upset Florida 21-16, just like we predicted! The Hurricanes have won four straight dating back to last season, the longest streak for Miami since 2008. Florida had a bad day with four turnovers in the red-zone. For Gator fans it was almost like twerking, falling through a glass table and catching on fire.
If past performance is any indication of future success then Miami fans have something to smile about. The winners of the last 5 regular season meetings between Florida and Miami have all finished in the top 5 of the AP poll. The win Saturday most likely will thrust Miami into the top-25 for the first time since 2010.
Next Up: Miami travels north to play South Florida
Miami is 4-1 straight-up in its last 5 games against South Florida
The total has gone under in South Florida’s last 5 games against Miami
Three Down


Texas Longhorns
2013 Record: Straight-Up 1-1, Against-the-Spread 1-1
Texas allowed BYU to total 550 yards rushing, the most yards rushing Texas has ever allowed, on its way to a 40-21 victory. The Cougars' quarterback Taysom Hill shredded the Longhorn defense for 259 yards on the ground, the second most by an FBS quarterback in the last 10 years.
In defeating Texas, BYU may have sunk my chance of cashing a 40-1 ticket on the Longhorns to win the BCS title. The loss made me think of Bill Barnwell’s process-outcome matrix. I started with a good process: Texas returned 19 starters, we predicted them to win the Big 12 (which they still can) and I got them at 40-1 (before Saturday their odds were down to 15-1). Bad outcome: Texas has the 12th most difficult schedule in the country. I’m not going to rip up my ticket just yet. A Big 12 title could change everything and it is always better to lose in September than in November.
Next Up: Texas hosts SEC program Ole Miss
The total has gone over in 4 of Texas’s last 6 games at home
Ole Miss is 4-11 straight-up in its last 15 games on the road
USC Trojans
2013 Record: Straight-Up 1-1, Against-the-Spread 0-2
Washington State beat USC for the first time since 2002 and despite having Mike Leach's offensive acumen on the sidelines, didn't score an offensive touchdown. The Cougars managed the 10-7 victory with an interception returned for a touchdown and a 41-yard field goal.
The seven points USC scored was the lowest point total for the Trojans in the past 10 years. USC had averaged 45.4 points/game against Washington State in their previous seven meetings. This was the first home opener the Trojans did not win since 1997. Fun note, I had a 60-1 ticket on USC to win the BCS title. I’m going to frame this after I write “Don’t be stupid” on it.
Next Up: Boston College
USC is 1-4 straight-up in its last 5 games
Boston College is 0-5 against-the-spread in its last 5 games on the road
Massachusetts Minutemen
2013 Record: Straight-Up 0-2, Against-the-Spread 0-2
After a whacky Week 1 in college football where we saw a number of upsets of FBS programs by FCS schools, Maine over UMass drew little attention. Maine’s quarterback Marcus Wasilewski helped the Bears score 17 unanswered points to beat the Minutemen 24-14 and extend the FCS’s winning streak to two weeks.
Massachusetts had lost three of the previous four meetings against Maine when it was a member of the Colonial Athletic Conference. For UMass, this was the first meeting against an FCS school since it jumped to the MAC in 2012. The Minutemen are 1-13 since moving to the FBS level, causing some to voice concern.
Next Up: Fellow loser to FCS opponents, Kansas State
Massachusetts is 2-7 against-the spread in its last 9 games
The total has gone over in 7 of Kansas State’s last 8 games at home