Last week's MAC record: 3-10. My picks: 7-5. It'll be like this for a while.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11
9 p.m. — Toledo (0-1) at Colorado (0-1) (TV: ESPN)
Who left a budding program at a worse possible time: Dan Hawkins or Craig Kilborn? Hawkins departed Boise State for Colorado, a team he has barely turned around. (Or perhaps it turned around so much it got dizzy.) Now look at the Broncos. They've had an undefeated season and are on the fast track to do it again this year. Kilborn, on the other hand, bolted from The Daily Show to become a new late night talk host opposite Conan O'Brien on CBS. You can predict the outcome if Letterman were to use Kilborn's career in "Will It Float?"
Hawkins, meanwhile, is trying his darnedest to justify starting his son at quarterback. Last week's loss to Colorado State sure didn't help. If they lose to the Rockets on national television, you can bet Hawkins will be replaced next year by Jon Stewart. The Rockets could probably score 30 points on CU's defense, but it's their own defenders that will ultimately let the coach's son validate his father's tenuous grip on the coach's seat. Colorado 41, Toledo 28
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 12
Noon — Pittsburgh (1-0) at Buffalo (1-0) (TV: ESPN Plus/GamePlan)
Without a doubt, this is the weekend's most intriguing game involving schools that I did not attend. Last year, UB almost gave Pitt its second straight loss to a MAC team in as many weeks, but the Panthers escaped with a 27-16 victory. This year, the game's in Buffalo, and it's probably the most anticipated home game the University at Buffalo has seen, perhaps ever.
This is a very trendy upset pick. Trendy enough to appear on a Milan fashion runway. I think everybody gets a sick thrill out of seeing Dave Wannstedt's teams lose games they shouldn't. Accessorize the mustache! PIttsburgh 24, Buffalo 14
Noon — Western Michigan (0-1) at Indiana (1-0) (TV: BTN)
So that's why Tim Hiller looked like Tim Allen at quarterback last week. It was the gloves' fault, not the Michigan defense (second to last item). If the pass ain't complete, you must admit defeat. But it doesn't explain why Hiller saw his open receivers the same way a nation saw Wilson's face.