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September 08, 2004 - Image 19

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The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, September 8, 2004 -19

Coast-to-coast football

Canes, 'Noles set to wage battle
By H. Jose Bosch
For the Daily calling a spike and instead called a swing left that resulted in
a two-yard loss. Game over. But it won't matter much for this
After a weekend packed with thrillers and near upsets, col- game because the Rams are seriously overmatched.
lege football rolls on towards weekend No. 2. Here's a look at Colorado State coach Sonny Lubrick might as well hold up
what to expect from key matchups from around the country: a large card with the play drawn out because his team doesn't
have a chance against this defense. At least the plays will be
No.6 Florida State (0-0) at No. 5 Miami (0-0) - Friday, the right ones.
8 p.m., ABC The Trojans won't fall asleep like last week, and their studs
Due to Hurricane Frances, this originally sched- will be at the top of their game. Junior quarterback
uled Labor Day event will now be on in prime time Matt Leinart has 272 yards and 3 touchdowns under
on Friday, and there is no better game to watch than his belt and the Rams better be prepared because
this one. One of college football's greatest rivalries bombs will be dropping all over L.A.
only gets better as the Seminoles make the dreaded Prediction: Southern Cal 31, Colorado State 3
trek to the Orange Bowl to face in-state rival Miami,
this time as a conference foe. Houston (0-1) at No. 2 Oklahoma (1-0) - Sat-
Miami has owned the Seminoles during the urday, 7p.m.

AP PHOTO
Sophomore quarterback Drew Tate and his Iowa Hawkeyes could open some eyes this weekend against in-state rival Iowa State.
In-state rivals battle in Iowa

last five meetings, and since 1991, have enjoyed three wide
rights and a wide left from kickers. Will it be another heart-
breaker for Florida State? Both teams lost their top runners
and receivers but the Seminoles still have a big playmaker
in senior wide receiver Craphonso Thrope (51 receptions for
994 yards last season).
Put that against Miami's top returning receiver, sophomore
Ryan Moore (44 receptions, 637 yards) and Florida State has
the edge. But all of that doesn't matter, because rain is in the
forecast, and that makes passing harder than sucking wet con-
crete through a paper straw. Miami has the better running
game, and will win, end of story. Sorry Seminole fans - stock
up on your tissue.
Prediction: Miami 13, Florida State 10
No. 17 Missouri (1-0) at Troy State (1-0) - Thursday, 7
p.m., ESPN
The second full week of college football begins Thursday
when the nationally televised matchup between No. 17 Mis-
souri Tigers and the mighty Trojans of Troy State. While
only their mothers care, the Trojans are aiming to avenge
their 44-7 bushwhacking of two years ago. The Trojans'
confidence is running high after their 17-15 upset over the
Marshall Thundering Herd last week despite producing an
anemic 65 yards rushing.
The only thing weaker last week was Missouri's defense.
The Tigers looked more like Tigger as they allowed Arkan-
sas State junior quarterback Nick Noce of to throw for 240
yards. To make things worse, after Noce left the game with
an injury, his replacement threw for another 110 yards. The
Tigers may have won the game, but against a good team,
a 110-yard day by the back-up quarterback will not equal
a win.
The only bright side of the day was the brilliant performance
by junior quarterback Brad Smith, who threw for 233 yards,
3 touchdowns and ran for 64 yards and one more score. This
game should be better than their last matchup, but the Trojans
will break down eventually. Give a mighty roar for the Tigers!
Prediction: Missouri 24, Troy State 13
Colorado State (0-1) at No. 1 Southern Cal. (1-0) - Sat-
urday, 8 p.m., ABC
After barely escaping with a win over Virginia Tech, 24-
13, the newly energized Trojans will now go head to head
with downtrodden Colorado State. The Rams are coming off
a heartbreaking loss against archrival and summer headline
grabber Colorado. Not only did they lose to a team whose
future was iffy over the summer, but they did it in grand fash-
ion. Junior quarterback Justin Holland couldn't hear his coach

Some things are guaranteed in life: death, taxes and Sooners
football. Few teams have been as consistent as the boys from
the Big 12 over the past four years - three bowl titles, two
conference titles and a national championship. Last week the
Sooners seemed stronger than ever. Bowling Green's defense
allowed two 100-yard rushers and a 238-yard passer. This
week their competition doesn't get much harder as the Sooners
face off against the Houston Cougars.
For those who don't remember, the Cougars made a nice
little trip from Houston to Michigan Stadium last year, and
their first mistake was getting off the bus, as the Wolverines
pounded them, 50-3.
Last week, Houston lost to Rice, 10-7, a team they beat
last year 48-14. This sleeper of a game will do nothing
more than pad the stats of Heisman hopeful senior quar-
terback Jason White, and provide a nice little paycheck for
the University of Houston. Try challenging yourself next
year, Sooners.
Prediction: Oklahoma 63, Houston 3

By James V. Dowd
Daily Sports Writer

When you compete in a confer-
ence that is as deep as the Big Ten,
non conference games become so
much more important. For teams
like Michigan State, it is a time to
pad the schedule and hope to add
some wins before

heading into the
brutal grind of
conference play.
For a team like
Illinois, it is a
chance to face
teams which

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allow the Illini to regain confidence
after poor play last season. How-
ever a team goes about their non-
conference schedule, it provides an
interesting look at how the Big Ten
stacks up on the field before the
real games begin.
Iowa State (1-0) at No. 12 Iowa (1-
0) - Saturday, noon, ESPN-Plus
Perhaps the country's most loyal
college sports town, Iowa City plays
host to one of college football's
overlooked rivalry games Saturday
when the hometown Hawkeyes take
on Iowa State.
In last week's opener, Iowa
smashed lowly Kent State 39-7
with a well-balanced offense led by
sophomore quarterback Drew Tate,
who was 13-for-22 for 136 yards
and two touchdowns.
The Hawkeye defense was stellar,
allowing just 110 total yards. Iowa
held Kent State's leading rusher to
just 17 yards and Kent State's team
total on the ground was -13.
The Cyclones, on the other hand,
will provide Iowa with a more
worthy opponent this week after
cruising through their week one
matchup against Northern Iowa.
The Panthers managed just 99 total
yards, but don't expect the Cyclones
to hold the Hawkeyes to less than
200.
Tate should continue his winning
ways and Albert Young should beat
his 82 yards and one touchdown of
last weekend. The Cyclones may
sustain a few drives and put some
points on the board, but not nearly
enough.
Prediction: Iowa 35, Iowa State 14.
UNLV(0-1) at No. 22 Wisconsin
(1-0) - Saturday, noon, ESPN
Many consider Michigan lucky
to not play Wisconsin this year.
Few consider UNLV lucky for hav-
ing No. 15 Tennessee and No. 22
Wisconsin as its season-opening
games. The Runnin' Rebels head
to Madison this week in hopes of
a solid performance before confer-
ence play, after being blown out by
Tennessee in their opener.
With the Rebels surrendering
nearly 300 rushing yards at Tennes-
see, Badgers running back Anthony
Davis is ready to show why many
consider him the Big Ten's best run-
ning back. Davis piled up 78 yards
of Wisconsin's 230 rushing yards
last week.

UCLA (0-1) at Illinois (1-0) -
Saturday, noon, ABC
If you're a fan of high-scoring
football, tune into ABC for its
broadcast from Champaign on Sat-
urday.
The Illini will face off against
the Bruins in a matchup between
two teams that piled up the yards
in their opening games. With 561
total yards for Illinois and 447 for
UCLA, there is no doubt that the
scoreboard operator will be earning
his keep at Memorial Stadium.
Illinois gave up 351 total yards
to Florida A&M last Saturday, but
held them to just 13 points. They
allowed both A&M quarterbacks
to amass 140 passing yards. After
UCLA's Drew Olson threw for 251
yards, the Bruins are sure to test the
Illini secondary early.
UCLA's downfall against Okla-
homa State was its rushing defense.
Oklahoma State tore UCLA apart
for 429 rushing yards, so expect
Illinois coach Ron Turner to send
his offense running.
Illinois ran for 301 yards against
Florida A&M, so look for them to
continue to run until someone can
stop sophomore Pierre Thomas,
who ran for 144 yards and two
scores last week.
Expect a high-scoring affair, and
if Illini quarterback Jon Beutjer can
beat the untested UCLA secondary,
the Illini will come out on top.
Prediction: Illinois 56, UCLA 45.
Central Michigan (0-1) at
Michigan State (0-1) - Saturday,
noon, ESPN-Plus

Like Iowa City, East Lansing
will witness an interstate matchup
this weekend. This one is more of
a mismatch than a rivalry. Central
Michigan will head to Michigan
State with hopes of legitimizing
their floundering program, but the
Spartans should have little trouble
winning the game.
Michigan State struggled in its
opener against Rutgers, allowing
420 total yards. But once the Scar-
let Knights crossed into Spartan
territory, Michigan State's defense
locked down, and forced Rutgers to
try seven field goals, four of which
were good.
The Spartans offense was ade-
quate, as senior quarterback Damon
Dowdell threw for 270 yards and
two touchdowns. Jason Teague and
DeAndra Cobb combined for 98
yards. Against Central Michigan's
weak rushing defense, the duo
should be able to break loose like
four separate Indiana players did
for touchdowns last week.
The high point for Central Michi-
gan was holding Indiana quarter-
back Matt LoVecchio to only 122
yards passing, but the Choppewas
will likely struggle with Dowdell's
many options. Eight Spartan receiv-
ers caught passes last week, includ-
ing touchdowns by Matt Trannon
and Eric Knott.
Perhaps the Chippewas will start
quickly, as they had a tendency to
do last year, but they will likely
wear down fast against the bigger
and stronger Spartans.
Prediction: Michigan State 38,
Central Michigan 13.

AP PHOTO
Oklahoma quarterback Jason White will have a chance to pad his
stats for another Heisman run against Houston on Saturday.

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