Most universities or colleges' first season football games are with an un-ranked team that they think 99 percent of the time will mean a sure win.
This year it’s a lot different for some of the top 10 teams in the nation, with the other top 15 using the first game as a team builder for a long winning season. This includes teams like University of California at Los Angeles, which is looking to upset Texas A&M. But then, it's gameplay as usual for contests like Oklahoma versus University of Texas at El Paso.
Here are your 10 picks for the week plus a tie breaker for Sept. 2.
1. Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Florida State Seminoles (at the Atlanta, Georgia new stadium): Jimbo Fisher has Florida State rating of No. 3 in the National. After this game it’s a big drop to No. 11, and Alabama by 17.
2. Florida Gators vs. Michigan Wolverines: Its an upset in the making, as the odds makers are calling the Wolverines the winner. But wait — the Gators have a huge bite on them and pull this one out. Florida by 3.
3. LSU Tigers vs. BYU Cougars: This game is so evenly matched, which has a very big repercussion on the outcomes. LSU drops to 20th in the top 25 and drops its Coach Ed Orgeron also. Hey, they can swap with Florida Atlantic Owls Coach Lane Kiffin. BYU by 6.
4. Texas A&M Aggies vs. UCLA Bruins: Wow! Aggies give up 7 points just to go to California, and what a tune up for the Aggies, who march up and down the field. Texas A&M by 21.
5. Louisville Cardinals vs. Purdue boilermaker: Cardinals do a lot of flying in this game. Louisville by 21.
6. California Golden Bears vs. North Carolina Tar Heels: This should be a good game at Chapel Hill, NC for all to see as the Tar Heels win by 18.
7. Virginia Tech Hokies vs. West Virginia Mountaineers: This game is Sept. 3 at Landover, Maryland. Some may be very angry that this game is on a Sunday, and the Hokies will wish they were back in Blacksburg, Virginia after this game is over. West Virginia by 10 (only Notre Dame/BYU can play on Sunday).
8. Boston College Eagles vs. Northern Illinois Huskies: The Eagles have the same team as 2016, with the same results but with this game they win their first right out of the box. Boston College by 10.
9. North Carolina State Wolfpack vs. South Carolina Gamecocks: This is a very close game, and only the “fan support” causes N.C. State pull it off by 3.
10. Tennessee Volunteers vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets: This is a Sept. 4 game in the new Atlanta stadium. The Volunteers were a big disappointment for most of their fans and were calling for the coach Butch Jones to follow Lane Kiffin over to Florida Atlantic. Yes, this is one of the hot seats in college football, but Tennessee pulls it out and wins by 14 and Coach Butch Jones is safe for another game.
The Tie Breaker: Maryland Terrapins vs. Texas Longhorns. This is where the Longhorns begin their comeback season. Texas by more than 20
See you next time for week two of the SEC/ACC picks.
Bill Everett is a member of the Military Order of the Purple Heart and lives in the Baker area.