Previewing the Top Games of 2012: Week Two

16 more weeks to go until the regular season starts and we're already into the top week two games of 2012.

After a pretty solid opening week---and let's hope a Irish blasting of Navy---the second week pulls back a little bit as most programs compete against some sacrificial lambs.

Fear not, as college football is always good for a bunch of entertaining games. The top games for the second week after the jump.

Week One Top Games

Thursday

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati

Pitt comes into this Big East opener having hosted Youngstown State the week prior, while Cincinnati will be playing their first game. Last season, the Bearcats won by 3 points and took home a share of the Big East title.

If Paul Chryst can turn around the Panther program this early season matchup against Cincinnati could be very important.

Saturday

USC vs. Syracuse (East Rutherford)

The Trojans will be coming off a home game against Hawaii and traveling east for a game in Giants Stadium against the Orange. USC is 3-0 all-time against Syracuse including last year's 38-17 victory in the Coliseum.

Over/under 900 passing yards through two games for Matt Barkley---make a pick!

Air Force at Michigan

How beat up is Michigan going to be after playing Alabama in week one? Will this game be closer than most think due to Air Force's crazy multiple formation offense?

This might be a tough game for Michigan but as long as Denard Robinson is in the game the Wolverines should have no problem moving the ball up and down the field. If it's close in the 3rd quarter it will be worth checking out---plus it's always good to scout Michigan early and often.

Auburn at Mississippi State

This has to be a game Mississippi State must win if they ever want to take the next step under Dan Mullen. I'm sure Mullen feels the same way as Auburn will be coming off a tough game against Clemson and traveling to Starkville.

Lose a game like this and the Bulldogs may be resigned to 4th place in the SEC West. Miss State has also lost 10 out of the past 11 games in the series as well.

Florida at Texas A&M

This will be only the 32nd game in the entire history of Florida football that the Gators play a game outside of the South (they are 9-21-1 all-time). Since 1950, it's only the 15th game (6-8-1 record) and just the 10th regular season game over that same time span (5-3-1 record).

We're witnessing history---hooray conference realignment!

Aside from that, there should be plenty of hype for this game as both teams are breaking in young quarterbacks and both coaching staff's will have a lot to prove.

Georgia at Missouri

Another new SEC matchup---you have to admit these will be pretty fun for the first couple years.

I like Georgia a lot in this game and I'm not so sure Missouri is prepared to do battle in the SEC right now. Actually, I'm not sure Missouri ever will be.

Miami at Kansas State

Miami doesn't have a very friendly schedule to open up Al Golden's second season at Da U. After opening on the road at Boston College, they'll have to hightail west to Manhattan, Kansas for a battle against Bill Snyder and the Wildcats.

Does anyone anywhere at any time know what to expect from Kansas State because I don't. These two teams played for the first time last year and the Wildcats won by 4 points. I suppose I'd expect another result similar to that in 2012.

Nebraska at UCLA

There's a chance that Nebraska may be coming off an upset by Southern Miss in week one and the Corn could be desperate. This will also be Jim Mora Jr.'s first game in the national spotlight and we'll be watching to see if there's anything different with the Bruins.

These teams haven't met since 1994 and UCLA leads the series 6-4-0. For some reason I foresee this being a really entertaining game.

Oklahoma State at Arizona

As of right now Oklahoma State is going to be breaking in a freshman quarterback and of course Rich Rodriguez has taken over in Tuscon so there's another major storyline.

Okie State won't be challenged in week one but Arizona has to deal with some MACtion in the form of Toledo before this matchup. Both of these programs have played each other over the past two seasons (the Cowboys have won both by a combined scored of 73-24) so there's a little bit of a recent rivalry involved here.

I suspect a much closer game as Rich Rod amps up the offense at Arizona and Oklahoma State replaced Weeden, Blackmon & company.

Penn State at Virginia

This will be a mildly interesting game as the Nittany Lions embark on the Bill O'Brien era and square off on the road against a better-than-you-think Virginia team.

There's a good chance that Matt McGloin is still the Penn State quarterback so be prepared to take UVA and the points.

Washington at LSU

This will be only the third meeting all-time between these two programs. We know the Huskies will have their work cut out for them playing in Death Valley, but you do wonder what LSU's quarterback situation will look like early in the season---let's hope that player has a chest.

This is a quality out of conference matchup that should be worth a look on Saturday.

Wisconsin at Oregon State

The Badgers wrecked Oregon State 35-0 last year in Madison, but the 2012 game should be a little bit more competitive. It also says a lot about the pathetic nature of Wisconsin's annual schedules that this is their first mildly challenging road game out of conference since 2005 when they visited North Carolina.

Wisconsin has perfected the art of playing cupcakes and only mid-to-low-level BCS teams out of conference. That's how the program seemingly never dips below 8 wins a season. At some point, you'd think Wisconsin will lose a game like this.

Which game are you looking forward to?

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