Carges College Primer: Week 3

Pete gives you the best college football matchups of the weekend!

September 15, 2017 - 12:35 pm

Pete Carges reporting
Twitter: @Carges550

With a wild Week 2 in the rearview mirror, and the landscape of college football slowly but surely taking shape, Week 3 has arrived with a helping of revenge games to appease our Saturday appetite. We’ve got the defending national champions vs Heisman winners, a battle in the SEC to determine which team has the right to get their faces stomped by Alabama in December, and a rematch of the best sporting event I’ve ever watched, with only slightly different personnel. 

As for the Carges guarantee, I promised you at least a 3-1 weekend last week, but failed to deliver as Auburn decided they didn’t want to score a touchdown in Death Valley. The natural progression of my picks would lead one to believe I was a week early. You’ll get your three out of four this weekend, but I’m thinking more of the realm of 4-0 and I hope you’ll come along for the ride.

Week 3 Can’t Miss Games

  • 3 - Clemson at 14 - Louisville - 8 p.m. (ABC)

We live in world of storylines and narratives, and this game certainly has plenty of those. It took a defensive stand in the final seconds last year for Clemson to hold on against the Cards, and I would not be surprised at all if this one goes down to the wire again.

Lamar Jackson (aka “The Eel”) has been giving his best September 2016 impression over the first two weeks with almost a thousand combined rushing and passing yards already, carving up power-five defenses left and right. While the reigning Heisman winner has looked unstoppable so far, he has yet to face a defense as good as Clemson, who put the clamps down on a top SEC team just a week ago.

We don’t really know what we have in Clemson’s offense yet as they throttled Kent State and looked average against Auburn, but we do know if they want to win they’ll need to score points, and lots of them.

We had a 42-36 barnburner a season ago, and I predict another close one, but Clemson’s D gets the job done and sends The Eel home again with the L.

My Pick: Clemson -3


  • 23 - Tennessee at 24 - Florida - 3:30 p.m. (CBS)

It’s been a crazy week for Florida as there was doubt as to whether or not they’d even play this game after Hurricane Irma, but we’re finally here and this is a big one for both of these SEC stalwarts.

Neither of these teams has been very impressive over the first couple weeks. Florida’s offense fell flat, again, against Michigan, and Tennessee won a game they had no business winning against Georgia Tech. A win here, however, would go a long way in the SEC East with Georgia and South Carolina both hot on their heels.

The best matchup in this one will be Florida’s non-existent running game against Tennessee’s garbage fire run defense. It’s basically a battle of which will suck less, but could very well determine the outcome.

I think Florida’s defense will muck this one up and keeps it low scoring, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Tennessee pulls out the win, as they’ll only need a few offensive plays to do so.

My Pick: UNDER 49.5


  • Texas at 3 - USC - 8:30 p.m. (FOX)

Young. Leinart. Bush. 4th and 2. Keith Jackson. Reggie’s lateral. I could write a novel about the 2006 Rose Bowl and it still wouldn’t be enough to describe how much I absolutely loved that magical game.

Now, what exactly does the 2006 Rose Bowl have to do with Saturday’s game? Pretty much nothing, but it sure will be glorious to see these two teams on the same field again. This one however, will be a bloodbath.

USC found their stride in the second half against Stanford last week and Sam Darnold regained his Heisman form. Their defense wasn’t spectacular, but it didn’t have to be; just good enough to keep Bryce Love and the Cardinal at bay.

Texas has a decent offense, but their defense will be completely overmatched in this one, and it will be back to the drawing board for Tom Herman as they get set for their Big 12 schedule.

The Trojans get a little revenge for a decade ago, and hopefully there will be no sanctions to follow, and this one actually counts.

My Pick: USC -15.5



  • 25 - UCLA at Memphis (+3) - 12 p.m. (ABC)

It’s a lazy take, but sometimes it’s 100-percent true.

A team traveling across the country to play a noon game in a different time zone is not an easy win by any stretch of the imagination. Add to the fact that Memphis has had essentially two weeks to prepare for this game after last week's game was cancelled, I think the Tigers have a real chance in this one.

Josh Rosen has been outstanding so far this year, but UCLA’s defense has not. The Tigers also have a quarterback that can put up video game numbers in Riley Ferguson, and I would not be surprised if Memphis snuck this one out thanks to an early kickoff on Saturday. 


Other Games to Watch Saturday:

  • 9 - Oklahoma State at Pitt - 12 p.m. (ESPN)
  • Oregon at Wyoming - 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
  • Army at 8 - Ohio State - 4:30 p.m. (FOX)


My College Football Playoff (if the season ended today):

  • 1 - Alabama vs 4 - Penn State
  • 2 - Clemson vs 3 - Oklahoma

Next four in: USC, Michigan, Washington, Oklahoma State


Heisman Front-runners: 

  1. Baker Mayfield - QB - Oklahoma
  2. Lamar Jackson - QB - Louisville
  3. Josh Rosen - QB - UCLA
  4. Saquon Barkley - RB - Penn State
  5. Mason Rudolph - QB - Oklahoma State
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