College football picks, schedule: Predictions for key top 25 games today in Week 2
A closer look at the top six games on the Saturday slate in Week 2 of the 2018 college football season
Week 2 of the college football season is upon us, and there are plenty off big games to keep an eye on throughout the day. There are not as many top-tier matchups as there were seven days ago, but that does not make Saturday's showdowns any less integral for a number of teams with conference title and College Football Playoff aspirations.
Let's take a look at the biggest games on the schedule Saturday along with our predictions for what will transpire in those contests. Our CBS Sports college football experts have picked every game both straight up and against the spread, giving you ample opportunity to decide how to make your picks ahead of kickoff.
All times Eastern
UCLA at No. 6 Oklahoma (-30.5) -- 1 p.m. on FOX: If we learned anything during Week 1, it's that Chip Kelly's rebuild in Westwood is going to take a very long time. In a game like this against a high-octane offense, the Bruins will have to score 40 to at least have a shot at springing the upset. After the offensive struggles last weekend, that isn't happening. Kyler Murray will put up 300 yards through the air and 100 on the ground, Rodney Anderson will find the end zone twice and the Sooners will roll -- but won't cover. Pick: UCLA (+29.5) -- Barrett Sallee
No. 3 Georgia at South Carolina (+10.5) -- 3:30 p.m. on CBS: South Carolina played Georgia tough last year in Athens, and that was without Deebo Samuel -- one of the most explosive players in college football. History will repeat itself Saturday afternoon. Gamecocks quarterback Jake Bentley will have some success finding Samuel and Bryan Edwards, Rico Dowdle will do enough to take pressure off the passing game, and the Gamecocks will have a chance to spring the upset in the fourth quarter. Expect Jake Fromm to play smart, the defense to just enough and D'Andre Swift to put it away late -- but not cover. Pick: South Carolina (+10.5) -- Barrett Sallee
Iowa State at Iowa (-3.5) -- 5 p.m. on FOX: Every other year, it seems this game comes down to a field goal. That was the case in 2011, '12, '14 and '17 ... and the Hawkeyes are 1-3 in those games (and could have been 0-4). However, getting those suspended players back is big for Iowa. That'll be enough of a boost to get the cover. Pick: Iowa -4 -- Ben Kercheval
So which teams should you back in Week 2 of the college football season? Visit SportsLine now to see the projected final score for every FBS matchup, all from the model that nailed its final seven picks of the 2017-18 season and has returned over $4,000 in profit to $100 bettors over the last three seasons.
No. 2 Clemson at Texas A&M (+12.5) -- 7 p.m. on ABC: I think this turns into a statement game for Clemson, similar to its win against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg in 2017. Dabo Swinney's only two losses in his last nine games against the SEC have come to Alabama in the College Football Playoff and while the head-to-head with Jimbo Fisher is deadlocked at four, he is the one currently riding a winning streak. Pick: Clemson -12.5 -- Chip Patterson
No. 13 Penn State at Pittsburgh (+8.5) -- 8 p.m. on ABC: Had Penn State won comfortably last weekend, I'd be more inclined to take Pitt here -- and, believe me, I understand if you want to -- but a part of me wonders if we won't see a much more focused effort from the Nittany Lions. The near loss against Appalachian State will serve as a wake-up call. Pick: Penn State -8.5 -- Tom Fornelli
No. 17 USC at No. 10 Stanford (-4.5) -- 8:30 p.m. on FOX: One thing that USC has in its favor on defense is a secondary that can body up against J.J. Arcega-Whiteside and the rest of Stanford's receivers. The Trojans are going to need to get a lot from their running game to make life on JT Daniels easy, and I think Stanford's defense is going to take away some of the easy throws he got against UNLV. In what I think -- and oddsmakers see -- as a toss-up game between these two Pac-12 powers, I'll ride with the home team. Pick: Stanford -4.5 -- Chip Patterson
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