College Football Week 3: 5 matchups to watch
Just like that we're in the third week of college football. And the craziest part is that we still have teams that won't play yet. We learned about the Big Ten's return to play this week, along with a few other conferences making a push to get their seasons back on track as well. So we could have a ton of football this year. Well, the same amount, but just spread out over a longer period of time. Before we look too far ahead, let's take a look at the matchups you need to watch this weekend.
Chuba Hubbard vs. Shamari Brooks
If you watched last year's contest between these two, you witnessed great performances from both Hubbard and Brooks. In the 40-21 Oklahoma State win, Hubbard went off for 256 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. With Tulsa going through turnover defensively, another explosive performance should be expected. Brooks didn't quite match that production, but still did well. He rushed for 107 yards and two scores himself to lead the Golden Hurricane. Tulsa's offense returns a majority of their starters, so they'll give the Cowboys defense all they can handle, but it might not be enough to pull off the upset on the road.
Baylor O-Line vs. Houston D-Line
Houston's defense remains its biggest X-Factor heading into the 2020 season, and they get a stiff test when they face the Bears this week. A new scheme and new faces played a big role in the struggles to get after the quarterback, but they'll need to step up when they face Charlie Brewer. The Bears quarterback threw for 3,161 yards and 21 touchdowns, but also ran for 344 yards and 11 more scores. The Cougars struggled to get to the quarterback last year, and tackling in space also was an issue, which is concerning when you face a talent like Brewer. His pocket awareness put him in position to evade pressure and get out in space. Guys like Payton Turner, Derek Parish, and David Anenih will be tasked with getting in Brewer's face, but still keeping him contained.
UCF receivers vs. Georgia Tech secondary
It's fitting that UCF begins their redemption tour against an ACC team. The Knights first loss came against Pitt last year, and they start the year against the Yellow Jackets, who just pulled off an upset over Florida State last week.
All eyes will be on Dillon Gabriel. The sophomore UCF quarterback's only interceptions came in losses, and those just happened to be his worst games. While there's no guarantee that he won't turn the ball over, he can show that he's grown in the offseason by not compounding mistakes. He has the arm talent to torch any secondary deep, but the question will be who he finds.
Gabriel Davis was a nice safety blanked for Gabriel and the Knights offense, but he's currently on the Buffalo Bills roster. Tre Nixon and Marlon Williams appear to be the top candidates to replace Davis, but they'll face a tough Georgia Tech secondary. The Yellow Jackets held Tamorrion Terry and the Florida State receivers to under 200 yards last week. Can they do it again against the explosive Knights offense?
Clemson vs. the record books
Somehow, The Citadel has a 0.2% chance to beat Clemson according to ESPN. That seems like it's 0.2% too high. Last week, they lost to USF and produced a Sports Center Not Top Ten moment.
Now the Bulls are a far cry from the Clemson Tigers, which begs the question: how many records can Clemson break? Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne might only play a single half, but that's more than enough time to make history. Lawrence threw for 351 yards last week against Wake Forest, and Etienne rushed for over 100 yards and a touchdown, and the resistance appears weaker this weekend.
D'Eriq King vs. Michael Cunningham
Two underrated quarterbacks square off in the gme of the week Saturday night. King comes from Houston, and played well in his first game overall. His receivers will need to create some more separation, otherwise his legs will do most of the work like they did against UAB. King only threw for 144 yards and bailed his team out multiple times by running, a luxury he might find less often against the Cardinals this weekend.
Two underrated quarterbacks square off in the game of the week Saturday night. King comes from Houston, and played well in his first game overall. His receivers will need to create some more separation, otherwise his legs will do most of the work like they did against UAB. King only threw for 144 yards and bailed his team out multiple times by running, a luxury he might find less often against the Cardinals this weekend. ing for an ACC title. D