I'm not going to spend much time on this one, either, as Arkansas St. isn't built to compete in this game. The big story line here is Auburn QB Cam Newton leading Gus Malzahn's high-powered spread attack. Ark. St. won't pose a threat to Newton. This is all about a young man who has gone through a lot battling his own excitement, settling down, and executing the offense. We're looking for command and accuracy from Newton more than anything else. Auburn needs to get their guys in game condition as they look ahead to a short week to face Miss. St. in Starkville Thursday.
Prediction: Auburn fans are going to take more from this game than they should because Newton will shine in his debut.
Georgia vs. UL-Lafayette
- Georgia's emerging star at RB Washaun Ealey was arrested for a hit-and-run vehicle incident and his status remains in question for this game
Keys To The Game: Very similar to Auburn, Georgia has a high-powered offense with 10 returning starters. The newcomer? QB Aaron Murray. Murray needs to do the same things as Newton: stay calm, execute the plays, and remember that he doesn't have to do it all with the talent around them with or without Ealey.
Prediction: Georgia is tuning up for next week's matchup with S. Carolina.
LSU vs. North Carolina (in GA Dome)
Keys To The Game: This is one of the marquis matchups of the opening week of the season- or at least it was going to be. There was a little incident involving possible NCAA rules violations involving players from several schools but UNC seems to have been hit the hardest. At this moment, we don't know who will be suiting up for a Tar Heels team that was supposed to start one of the toughest defenses in the country.
LSU has identity questions but it has a lot less to do with NCAA issues and more to do with coaching. Year in and year out, LSU is one of the most talented teams in the country but the Tigers can't seem to shake the label of 'underachievers.'
Somebody is going to have to show up for this game.
Prediction: I'll take an LSU impostor over a UNC team in shambles and full of distractions.