Titans clash in a strong weekend schedule
Brad Curnow | Sports Writer | @jojocornrow
Even if the games looked like mismatches on paper, Week 6 didn’t disappoint with upsets, thrillers, and Goliath killers. Washington, Texas, Michigan, and Tennessee all defeated nationally ranked opponents. Oklahoma State, TCU, Florida State, Michigan State, and Utah all narrowly escaped upsets. Mostly notably, Michigan notched their third straight shutout with a 38-0 thumping of Northwestern, and Utah intercepted five Jared Goff passes and won by a 30-24 margin.
The weekend starts Thursday night with Stanford home to UCLA in a Pac-12 battle. Friday night Utah State plays host to Boise State while Cincinnati is at BYU. Saturday is highlighted by Michigan State at Michigan, Alabama at Texas A&M, and Florida at LSU. Arizona State will play at Utah to wrap up the weekend.
UCLA Bruins at Stanford Cardinal
UCLA travels to Stanford looking to get back on track after losing to Arizona State at home in Week 5. Freshman quarterback Josh Rosen has been spectacular on the road, leading the Bruins to victory by an average of 30 points away from the Rose Bowl.
Stanford has not taken their foot off the gas since losing at Northwestern the opening week. The Cardinal have notched conference wins at USC and a blowout against Arizona.
Boise State Broncos at Utah State Aggies
Boise State makes a visit to Logan, UT to take on Utah State in a Mountain West battle. Since losing at BYU, Boise State has outscored their last four opponents by a score of 204-24. The Broncos’ rushing attack is led by running back Jeremy McNichols, who has scored 12 touchdowns on the season.
The Aggies sit at 3-2 with their only losses coming against Pac-12 opponents. Utah State has outscored conference opponents by a margin of 57 points in two games.
Cincinnati Bearcats at BYU Cougars
Cincinnati takes on BYU Friday night in the first meeting between the two schools. Despite their immense offensive output, Bearcat quarterbacks have already thrown 10 picks in just five games.
BYU showed toughness against Eastern Carolina by grinding out a win in the fourth quarter. The Cougars will need to show the same grit against the Bearcats to tally their fifth win on the season.
Iowa Hawkeyes at Northwestern Wildcats
Northwestern is home to Iowa in a Big Ten, top-25 showdown. Unbeaten Iowa is anchored by a strong defense that has forced 12 takeaways this season. Running back Jordan Canzeri has led the offensive attack by averaging 116 yards per game.
Northwestern comes into the contest after a deflating 38-0 loss to Michigan last week. The Wildcats are looking to bounce back with sophomore running back Justin Jackson and a stout defense.
Michigan State Spartans at Michigan Wolverines
Michigan hosts Michigan State in a battle for state supremacy. The Spartans remain undefeated but have struggled to do so with an average margin of victory of 14.5 points. Michigan State’s previous opponents have a collective record of just 13-20.
Michigan has been a team continually on the rise since an opening weekend loss. The Wolverines are looking to continue a streak of stellar defensive play against the Spartans.
Alabama Crimson Tide at Texas A&M Aggies
Alabama travels to College Station, TX to play Texas A&M in a crucial SEC matchup. The Crimson Tide will need to knock off the Aggies for any chance at getting back into the conversation for an SEC title. Alabama has outscored opponents by a total of 75 points since a devastating loss to Ole Miss a month ago.
The Texas A&M offense has been clicking, scoring at least three touchdowns in each contest this season. Quarterback Kyle Allen leads the Aggies’ attack by averaging 340 passing yards through two games of SEC play.
Florida Gators at LSU Tigers
Florida and LSU face off in Baton Rouge, LA as division leader in the SEC. The Gators need to find success without quarterback Will Grier, who has been suspended for the remainder of the season. Without Grier, Florida will rely even more on their stifling defense.
Heisman contender, running back Leonard Fournette, has carried LSU’s offense. The Tiger’s running back has shredded conference opponents, averaging 181.7 yards in three SEC contests.
Arizona State Sun Devils at Utah Utes
Utah looks to continue their impressive run in the Pac-12 South while hosting Arizona State. The Sun Devils have won 11 straight against the Utes and look to spoil hopes of a College Football Playoff berth in Salt Lake City. Arizona State is still riding high after a huge upset of UCLA at the Rose Bowl two weeks ago.
Utah’s defense is coming off a tremendous performance against Cal where they managed six total takeaways. Quarterback Travis Wilson will need to put together a sound performance with a strong Sun Devils run defense looking to shutdown running back Devontae Booker.
I’m a Pacific Northwest guy who loves his Pacific Northwest sports. An amateur movie buff who prefers the disc to digital. Chasing the sports writing dream while I geek out on Assassin’s Creed.