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Friday, June 21, 2024
Ohio State-USC clash headlines week two

The Badgers and the Buckeyes met in 2010 in Camp Randall under the lights when Ohio State was led by quarterback Terrelle Pryor. 

Ohio State-USC clash headlines week two

The Ohio State -USC matchup, Oklahoma's week one implosion, and BCS busters are on everyone's mind heading into week two.

Showdown in Columbus

In the premier matchup of the weekend, the No. 3 ranked Trojans of USC will march into the Horseshoe in Columbus, OH to take on the No. 8 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes.

This clash will feature the top-ranked quarterback from each of the last two national recruiting classes, with sophomore Terrelle Pryor behind center for the Buckeyes and true freshman Matt Barkley calling the shots for USC. The two are opposites in style, as Pryor has flashed elite speed and a big arm, despite inconsistent mechanics.  Barkley, on the other hand, is a true pocket passer who made all the right reads in his collegiate debut, but did not push the ball down the field. That will have to change in order to keep the Buckeyes from loading up the box against USC's stable of running backs. 

The Trojans boast six capable backs, led by junior Joe McKnight, who rushed for 145 yards and 2 touchdowns on just 14 carries last week. 

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The Buckeyes' athleticism on both sides of the ball ranks at or very near the top of the Big Ten, but that was also the case last year when they went to the Coliseum in Los Angeles and got rolled 35-3.  Needless to say, Ohio State will have to improve on their 31-27 escape-job against Navy last weekend if they want to hang with the Trojans.

Sooner Struggle

Last year, Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford ascended into rarified air in the college football world by winning the Heisman trophy as a sophomore.  Next year, many experts have him pegged as the favorite to be the top overall pick in the NFL Draft.  It is the current year, however, that is causing Bradford problems. 

Bradford was knocked out of last week's game with a shoulder injury and the previously third-ranked Oklahoma Sooners were beat 14-13 by #9 BYU.  He has since been diagnosed with a sprain of the AC joint in his right shoulder.  While it will not require surgery, Bradford is expected to miss 2-4 weeks. That time frame will make plenty of people in Norman nervous, as the Sooners have upcoming dates with Miami (Oct. 3 in Miami) and No. 2 Texas (Oct. 17 at the Cotton Bowl). 

With a mark already in the loss column, Oklahoma can ill-afford another loss if they want to contend for a national title.  The Sooners will also be without star tight end Jermaine Gresham for the remainder of the season, as he recently underwent surgery to repair cartilage in his right knee.  

BCS Busters

By beating then No. 19 Oregon at home last Thursday, No. 12 ranked Boise State cleared the highest hurdle on its schedule, prompting many to speculate that the Broncos will again compile a perfect record and again ""bust"" into one of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) Bowls in January.           

Add the Cougars of BYU to that list as well.  Senior quarterback Max Hall threw for 328 yards and two touchdowns en route to a 14-13 upset over then No. 3 Oklahoma on Saturday. With the win, BYU shot from No. 20 to No. 9 in the AP poll.  While the Cougars have a tougher schedule than Boise State the rest of the way, (they host Florida State, No. 17 TCU, and No. 16 Utah) they too are knocking at the door of the BCS.  In fact, should BYU run the table, they would have built a very strong case for a berth in the National Title game. 

Undefeated runs from both Boise State and BYU would be a nightmare for the BCS committee, and would provide more ammo for those who support a playoff system in college football. 

Neither the Western Athletic Conference (home to Boise State) nor the Mountain West Conference (BYU) are designated as BSC conferences, and therefore there is no guarantee that a team from those conferences will be invited to a BCS game. The so-called power conferences, such as the Big Ten, Big 12, Pac 10, and SEC, each have one automatic bid into one of the high-revenue, primetime bowls.

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