Every week, a member of the Big Ten Bloggers poses three questions, and the rest of us get to provide our answers. Of course, it's not limited to just us...I would personally love to hear what your thoughts are on each of these questions;
This week's questions come from JB and his Penn State blog "There Is No Name On My Jersey";
1. Clearly, Week 1 was a huge week for upsets with Appalachian St. beating Michigan and Clemson beating FSU (though if that really shocked anyone I’d be surprised). What are your upset games for Week 2 and why?
I have three upsets to watch out for this weekend;
Miami over Oklahoma - Two of my least favorite teams of all time. Despite the heated rivalry, I don't hate Michigan...I mock them, but I still respect them. But I HATE Miami and Oklahoma. So I'll be happy when one of these two teams loses on Saturday.
My rationale for calling this upset is simple...Miami's underrated, and Oklahoma's overrated. It's that simple. I think Bob Stoops is going to get the biggest surprise he's had since....well, since two games ago when Boise State did it.
TCU over Texas - TCU is high on life right now, seeing a continuance of the winning ways of 2005 (11-1) and 2006 (11-2). This is a team filled with guys who know how to win....now they are ready to take that next step, and this is the week to do it. Big upsets on the road is exactly the way to take that big step....just ask TCU. They beat Oklahoma on the road to start their 2005 season, and it propelled them to the winning they are now used to seeing. Another big win at Texas is exactly what they need. And they know it.
Texas, meanwhile, is not yet worthy of their lofty #7 ranking. They stumbled around the field against Arkansas State, and when you add in their injury report and the police blotter in Austin, you get an overrated team ripe for a big upset.
Oregon over Michigan - I'm not so sure how much of an upset this would be, considering last week's Michigan game. But the Vegas line still has the Wolverines winning, so it's an upset in their eyes.
Oregon plays an offense similar to Appalachian State, and the Maize and Blue didn't do much to stop it. Plus, Oregon does have better athletes than Appy. ASU gave Oregon some decent game film to study, and I expect the Ducks to exploit the weaknesses they will see in the film.
Two more reasons Oregon will win, and we can call them "the intangibles". One, Michigan is still trying to recover from what happened last week...I can't see their practices being very smooth all week long, and it'll show on the field. Two, nobody who knows college football gives Lloyd Carr a chance in hell at actually coaching these boys into a rebound worthy of Michigan University football. Lloyd's on his farewell tour, and he's not about to become a good coach now.
2. What do you think about the BTN? How’d it look? How were the announcers? Did the first weekend change your opinion of the BTN?
The only problem I can think of had me terrified prior to kickoff....the Ohio State game was on one of their alternate channels, and that channel was completely black until the game began. No logo announcing the game was coming up, no pre-game feed from the main BTN channel, nothing...so until the clock struck Noon, I had no clue if the game was actually going to make it on the air.
I was worried that the first week would be filled with problems, and other than the above issue, it really wasn't, so I'm pleased.
The picture was really sharp, so at least they get an A for being technically adept.
The announcers were no different than the B-list stuff I'm used to hearing when I see an opening-week against against a cupcake. You expect the best play-by-play when the games are bigger, and you expect the weaker commentary otherwise. So I got what I expected.
3. Now that we’re a game into the Season evaluate the Big Ten’s strength.
It's too early to make that assessment. The Michigan loss embarrassed the conference, so that's bad. But the rest of the league didn't really play the caliber of opponents to give a proper evaluation of the league in general. After Week 3, it'll be easier to judge the Big Ten. But I can't do it yet.