Picks Up! Miner Rush's C-USA Football Weekend Viewing Guide

The season is here and what better way to kick it all off than a  night game (tonight!) featuring one of the C-USA's finest on national television?   Southern Miss isn't the only C-USA squad on tonight either; actually four league schools kick off their seasons tonight.

There are some great games this holiday weekend.  Southern Miss and South Carolina and Texas Tech vs. SMU are two where elite C-USA teams will have a grand stage to show the rest of the country that there is some talent, and depth, in this league.  Marshall and Ohio State?  Well, not so much.

Each week, just before the first C-USA game is played, I will use this post to provide the Miner Nation with a viewing guid of league games so you know when to set the DVR.  This will also be the post where I, and you, can make our Picks for each weeks games.

Day Matchup Kickoff (MST) TV?
Thursday Marshall at Ohio State 5:30 PM B10 Network
  Southern Miss at South Carolina 5:30 PM ESPN
  Florida Atlantic at UAB 6:00 PM  
  Southeastern Louisiana at Tulane 6:00 PM  
Saturday Texas at Rice 1:30 PM ESPN
  South Dakota at UCF 5:00 PM  
  Memphis at Mississippi State 5:00 PM ESPNU
  Texas State at Houston 6:00 PM  
  Arkansas Pine-Bluff at UTEP 7:05 PM  
Sunday Tulsa at East Carolina 12:00 PM ESPN 2
  SMU at Texas Tech 1:30 PM ESPN


Weaksauce Award

There are several FCS opponents on the opening day schedule as Houston, UTEP, UCF, and Tulane all open up with cream puffs.  We'll call it a four way tie.  The reality of a 12 game schedule is that teams will have to do this.  Hopefully, the C-USA sweeps these gimme's..... All eyes on Tulane.

Brave Soul Award

The Marshall Thundering Herd:  Opening up on a Thursday at the Horseshoe? It's gonna be a Hornets nest up there and the Herd don't have the horses to compete with OSU.  Marshall has some talent, but opening night in Columbus with Terrel Pryor hoping to kick off a Heisman campaign?  The odds are stacked against the Herd.

Best Chance for a Potential C-USA Upset

The SMU Mustangs:  This game also wins the "Set Your DVR Award."  Don't miss this one on Sunday afternoon.  It has the makings of a shootout.

The Mustangs travel to the Jones SBC Stadium in Lubbock for a Labor Day game.  Texas Tech is in a transition period with new head coach Tommy Tuberville at the helm.  I expect there to be some growing pains for Tech offensively and with Taylor Potts behind center, I firmly believe SMU can push Tech to the limits. 

I was at the Tech vs. UNM game last season.  Taylor Potts lost his starting job to Steven Sheffield in that game.  The media reports said it was because of a concussion and that's true, Potts was injured.   But, that doesn't take away from the fact that 20,000 or so Tech fans were chanting "No More Potts" during the first half, well before the injury.  The Lubbock faithful, and I suspect some players on Tech's team, aren't buying what Taylor is selling.  

We'll see if June Jones and Kyle Padron can take advantage of that.

Runner Up:  Southern Miss at South Carolina.  I suspect USC's offense will struggle a bit in this one, the question is, can USM score a couple of touchdowns to keep this one close?  On the road, in front of 82,000, I think it will be a grind it out kind of game.  An upset?  Can't wait to see.

Conference-usa-logo_medium

Conference USA Game of the Week:

Tulsa Golden Hurricane vs. the East Carolina Pirates:  There's only one C-USA game this week but it's a good one and lucky for us it's on ESPN 2.  It will be exciting to see a traditional C-USA Spread Offense team, match up with an ECU club that is implementing the mother of all spread- the Air Raid.  Expect some fireworks in this one.

Predictions?  Who do you got?

Game

Miner Rush’s Picks

Marshall at Ohio State

Ohio State

Southern Miss at South Carolina

 South Carolina 

FAU at UAB

UAB 

SE Louisiana at Tulane

Tulane 

Texas at Rice

 Texas Rolls

South Dakota at UCF

 Central Florida

Memphis at Mississippi State

 Mississippi State

Texas State at Houston

Houston

Tulsa at East Carolina

 East Carolina 27, Tulsa 24

SMU at Texas Tech

 Texas Tech 35, SMU 31

 

The UTEP Pick

 

I don't know right now if Donald Buckram will play on Saturday.  If, hopefully as a precaution, he doesn't, I'm still confident that Trevor Vittatoe and company can get it done against UAPB.  Other than the Buckram story, of course, this game is about seeing the new 4-3 defense.  I'm betting that UAPB will find the end zone once-maybe twice- as UTEP gets the kinks out against QB Josh Boudreaux & Company.  

No wins are ever guaranteed, as we all know, but the Miners have too many seniors to let his one slip away.   UTEP 45, UAPB 17.

 


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