Full-on conference play is still two weeks away, so as usual it's slim pickings in terms of interesting games among top competition. In fact, there's exactly one matchup featuring two ranked teams, and South Carolina barely counts.
Nonetheless, Jon and I resume our intense battle for supremacy, which I should probably remind you our fearless leader won by the narrowest of margins a year ago. Like our picks, most of the drama is For Entertainment Purposes Only, but we hope you enjoy it anyway.
Week One ended in a somewhat embarrassing draw, with both of us going 6-4 because Stanford self-destructed every time it reached the redzone and Western Kentucky couldn't put away maybe the worst team in the Big Ten. Jon made the mistake of trusting Texas and I made the mistake of putting faith in Texas Tech, so here we are.
MISSOURI (-9.5) over Central Florida, 11 a.m., SEC Network
Faurot Field, Columbia MO
LT: This is the nonconference game that has always worried me the most, which is admittedly setting quite a low bar when the other 3 games are South Dakota State, Toledo and Indiana. Still, even without Blake Bortles and a lot of other key guys, UCF is the defending Fiesta Bowl champ. All that being said, Mizzou looked really impressive when it was interested in last week's 49-24 demolition of Toledo, and the Tigers are returning home with quarterback Maty Mauk at the top of his game and a flat-out scary defensive line. I think Mizzou covers wins comfortably in its SEC Network debut.
JM: Central Florida is not the same team it was last year, and to put a lot of stock in their resume so far requires buying into the idea that Penn State's really good. A 21-3 win over Akron in Week Two does nothing to support that opinion. Meanwhile, Missouri has kept a dangerous South Dakota State offense in check, and blasted a Toledo squad we both thought would make things interesting. So no, I won't be disagreeing with Luke here. Tigers cover.
Wyoming (+43.5) over OREGON, 1 p.m. Pac-12 Network
Autzen Stadium, Eugene OR
LT: I'm channeling my inner Jon with this game. It's where we find out just how great of a coach Craig Bohl really is. The Cowboys are 2-0 thanks to a pair of unimpressive, low-scoring home wins against Montana, and a Bohl defense hasn't allowed 40 points since 2009. But clearly Wyoming will be at an incredible athletic disadvantage on the road against an offense that hung 46 on supposedly one of the best defenses in the country last week. It's a tough call, but I think Wyoming eats up enough clock and Oregon's offense takes its foot off the gas just enough to allow the Cowboys to cover in a blowout loss.
JM: 43.5? What? Get out of here. First, most statistical analyses I've seen on this game have Oregon as, at most, a 30-point favorite. Second, no matter what the spread is, Wyoming has a supernatural ability to depress scoring; they've hit the under in six straight games, and four of those games were before Bohl took over. Point is: 44 points is a lot to score straight up against the type of team Wyoming is. Now consider how many points you think Wyoming's going to score and then do the math.
The Ducks may well win this by 30-35. 44 is too much. Wyoming covers.
Georgia (-6) over SOUTH CAROLINA 2:30 p.m., CBS
Williams-Brice Stadium, Columbia SC
LT: Steve Spurrier's team got absolutely crushed at home by a freshman quarterback making his SEC debut, and it was glorious. Now the Gamecocks take on a senior QB with a little bit of experience and, more importantly, a stout Bulldogs running attack. Look for South Carolina to stick around for a little bit, but eventually Georgia will take over and cover to make the Gamecocks the first team in the country to lose two conference games.
JM: East Carolina's not a bad team, but a 10-point win at home over the Pirates combined with the seal-clubbing Georgia put on Clemson in week one and the rout -- at home, no less -- by Texas A&M is just too much. Georgia's going to curb-stomp the Cocks.
DUKE (-17.5) over Kansas, 2:30 p.m., ESPN3
Wallace Wade Stadium, Durham NC
LT: I'm not going to make a basketball joke here. One of these teams won its division last year and actually has a 10-game regular season winning streak. The other nearly blew a 24-0 lead against one of the Ohio Valley Conference's worst teams last Saturday and has won ten games combined since the beginning of the 2010 season. This one's easy. Duke covers and ends that one deranged kU fan's dream of going undefeated.
JM: I mean, I'm not even allowed to take Kansas to cover even if I think they can, am I? I don't. Duke covers.
OKLAHOMA (-20.5) over Tennessee, 7 p.m. ABC
Memorial Stadium, Norman OK
LT: I hate to say it, but Oklahoma has actually really impressed me so far. Sure, the competition has been terrible, but Trevor Knight has looked like the real deal at quarterback and they've got a lot of ridiculous athletes making plays on defense. Of course, this is the Sooners, so they're probably due for an inexplicable loss at some point, but I don't think it comes this week. Tennessee is a program on the rise under Butch Davis, but they're not yet ready to compete on such a big stage. OU covers.
JM: Well, Luke, you've done it. You managed to pick an entire slate of five games which I can't contest with you. I will say that if this game weren't in Norman, I might swing over... but then, if this game were in Knoxville, the line would only be 14, and I wouldn't. Sooners cover.
Or, perhaps, Thursday, as real life is causing problems for your fearless leader. Regardless, when we return we'll make Luke pick some more Big Ten games, but only because they're against Big 12 teams. Won't that be fun?
Hey, wait. Where's Luke going?