College Football Week 2 Games to Watch: Aggies Roll into Death Valley

Post Banner

College football returned to our lives last weekend and didn't disappoint, giving us a plethora of memorable moments to kick off the season.

In the most anticipated matchup of the weekend, Auburn came from behind to defeat Oregon, 27-21, and gave freshman quarterback Bo Nix a victory in his debut.

The nation's top duo of Clemson and Alabama both got off to hot starts, winning their opening games easily and starting their resumes for the 2020 College Football Playoff National Championship

But can Week 2 match the excitement of college football's opening weekend? The short answer is yes. 

Here are the biggest games of Week 2 of the 2019 college football season. 

No.21 Syracuse vs. Maryland

Saturday, 9/7 — 12:00 p.m.

The Orange entered the season as a darkhorse contender in the ACC and get their first real test of the year on Saturday in College Park. 

The defense was on display in Syracuse's opener against Liberty, as the Orange held the Flames scoreless and to only 234 total yards on offense. The Orange were everywhere in the backfield, recording eight sacks in the victory. The offensive unit didn't put together a great performance but did enough in the second half of Week 1 to give head coach Dino Babers confidence moving forward. 

The Terrapins are a tasty foe for the Orange, coming off a 79-0 blowout of Howard last Saturday. The win featured Maryland's first shutout since 2013 and their 56 points before halftime were a school record. 

While Maryland doesn't find itself in the Top 25, this is still a matchup of two Power 5 teams who were able to shut out their opening opponents. Can the Orange keep the only season momentum rolling, or will new head coach Mike Locksley stay perfect in his first two games?

Cincinnati vs. Ohio State

Saturday, 9/7 — 12:00 p.m.

This game offers another look at Justin Fields in his second game as a Buckeye. The Georgia-transfer produced an impressive debut with five touchdowns in Ohio State's 45-21 win over Florida Atlantic. 

The Bearcats come into this matchup standing tall after a season-opening win over Chip Kelly's UCLA side last week. Cincinnati's offense was highlighted by a solid performance from quarterback Desmond Ridder, who threw for 242 yards and two touchdowns in the home victory. But the hill gets much higher to climb for the Bearcats as they head to The Horseshoe for a battle with their in-state rival. 

This game is Cincinnati coach Luke Fickell's return to Ohio State — he played for the Buckeyes from 1993 through 1996 and spent almost two decades with the program as a coach. 

No.12 Texas A&M vs. No.1 Clemson

Saturday, 9/7 — 3:30 p.m.

Almost one year to the date of their last meeting, Texas A&M and No.1 Clemson go head-to-head on Saturday. 

Last year's meeting saw Clemson sneak out of College Station with a 28-26 victory, but this year's Aggie team will post a tougher test in head coach Jimbo Fisher's second season in charge. 

Texas A&M will have a few extra days rest over the Tigers as they started their season on Thursday with a 41-7 victory over Texas State. Junior quarterback Kellen Mond got the season off on the right foot, scoring four touchdowns and looking to be in full command of the offense in his second year as a starter. 

Including his time at Florida State, Fisher is 4-5 against Clemson as a head coach. 

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence will look to bounce back after his first start of the season failed to meet expectations. The Tigers defeated Georgia Tech 52-14, but Lawrence finished the game 13-23 with 168 passing yards and two interceptions. Momentum is still on Lawrence's side, though, as this will be his first start in Death Valley since leading the Tigers to the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship

No.6 LSU vs. No.9 Texas

Saturday, 9/7 — 7:30 p.m.

Texas' revival takes center stage this week against an SEC opponent. With College Football Playoff dreams for the first time in several years, the Longhorns welcome LSU to Austin for a showdown of Top 10 teams and a chance for Tom Herman to secure his biggest win since taking over the program. 

The Longhorns looked strong in their season opener, trouncing Louisiana Tech, 45-14. Quarterback Sam Ehlinger already looked in midseason form, throwing for 276 yards and four touchdowns on the day. 

The Tigers will debut their newly installed spread offense on a national stage in this matchup. In the first game under the new system, quarterback Joe Burrow threw for 278 yards and five touchdowns in the Tigers' 55-3 win over Georgia Southern. 

While LSU prides itself on defensive fortitude under coach Ed Orgeron, this game will likely come down to the performance of each team's quarterback. 

No.23 Stanford at USC

Saturday, 9/7 — 10:30 p.m.

USC's season may have started with a win, but the loss they suffered during the game stole all the headlines. Quarterback J.T. Daniels suffered a torn ACL in the second quarter of the Trojans' 31-23 win over Fresno States in Week 1, putting the ball in the hands of freshman Kedon Slovis for the rest of the season. This matchup with Stanford also begins a rigorous patch of games for head coach Clay Helton's team, featuring four Top 25 opponents in six weeks. 

Stanford endured a tough Week 1 test, outlasting Northwestern, 17-7, in front of a home crowd. But like their Week 2 opponents, they couldn't make it out of the first game of the season with their starting quarterback intact. Davis Mills had to play in the second half for the Cardinals after starter K.J. Costello left the game following a hit to the head. His status for the future is unknown, but Mills is expected to get the start versus the Trojans. 

With two inexperienced quarterbacks leading the charge in this matchup, expect both Helton and Stanford coach David Shaw to rely on their defenses to propel them to victory. 

Attend the 2020 CFP National Championship with an Official Ticket Package

Playoff Premium wants to get you to the 2020 College Football Playoff National Championship with an Official Ticket Package. Packages include a game ticket, in-stadium hospitality, exclusive experiences and much more.

Learn more about our Official Ticket Package offering by clicking below.

2020 CFP National Championship Packages