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AAC Football Week 2 Game of the Week

What are the games to watch in the American this week?

Can Temple do it again?
Can Temple do it again?
Frederick Breedon

Overall, the opening weekend of college football did not go well for the American Athletic Conference. There were some pretty exciting games, though. Tulane and Tulsa gave us a fun overtime battle and UCF took Penn State to the wire with some last-minute heroics that fell just short of completing a comeback.

Here are the most interesting match-ups of the day:

Georgia Tech (1-0) at Tulane (0-1)

4pm ET, ESPNews

Tulane lost a tough one to Tulsa last week on the road, but this resurgent program is opening a new stadium against a beatable ACC team from Georgia Tech and hopes are high in Nawlins. A win would be a big boost for Tulane, who looked good in the season opener but fell in overtime despite leading for 90% of regulation. Green Wave quarterback Tanner Lee, a redshirt freshman, showed promise in his first collegiate start.

The Georgia Tech Yellowjackets, after beating Wofford last week, are 10-point favorites on the road.

Pick: Georgia Tech -10

East Carolina (1-0) at No. 21 South Carolina (0-1)


People are high on East Carolina in their first year in the American. They have an experienced quarterback in Shane Carden and return a lot of starters from the team that went 10-3 last year. Last week they beat North Carolina Central, 52-7 but nobody cares what the score is when you beat an FCS team. This is the Pirates' opportunity to make an impression on a national scale. Even if they lose, so long as they can keep it competitive against a very good South Carolina team, it could be a promising step in what could be a breakthrough season for this football program.

Meanwhile South Carolina, fresh off a sound beating at the hands of Texas A&M last week, needs to get the win here. All of the pressure is on them as they host East Carolina favored by 16 points. Losing would likely drop them from the Top 25 and raise serious concerns as they face Georgia next week. Their defense was completely overwhelmed against the Aggies-- they can't afford a repeat performance tonight.

Pick: East Carolina +16

Wildcard upset longshots

Maryland (1-0) at South Florida (1-0), 3:30pm ET, CBS Sports Network

USF had their hands full with Western Carolina last week while Maryland comfortably took care of James Madison. The Bulls are 14-point underdogs, but crazier things have happened. The Terrapins are a better team than their record these past few years would indicate, they should be able to win this one but I think USF keeps it close since they love to mess with people. Pick: USF +14

No. 4 Oklahoma (1-0) at Tulsa (1-0), 12pm ET, ABC/ESPN2

After coming back to beat Tulane last week, Tulsa is riding high as they play host to in-state powerhouse Oklahoma. That wave will likely crash on national television at the hands of the mighty Sooners, but it's good to see American teams playing games like this out of conference. Even though they are 25-point underdogs, expect Tulsa to play four hard quarters. Pick: Oklahoma -25

Memphis (1-0) at No. 11 UCLA (1-0), 10pm ET, Pac-12 Network

Memphis beat Austin Peay last week by a sizeable margin, which ain't impressing nobody. They travel to sunny LA for a likely slaughter at the hands of the UCLA BruinsPick: UCLA -24

AAC Week Two Game of the Week: Temple (1-0) at Navy (0-1)

1pm, ESPN3

This is a true underdog (dynasty) story. Who would have thought this game would have the most cachet of any on the American Conference slate? The TV producers certainly didn't, as this one can only be seen on ESPN3.

After two strong performances by both of these teams in Week 1, and considering the fact that Navy is a future AAC member, this has my vote for Game of the Week. Both of these teams have something to prove, and it should be a tightly contested battle.

Temple beat Vanderbilt last week. Actually they blew the doors off of them, in Nashville. It was their first win against the SEC since 1938. This week against a Navy team that took Ohio State to the wire, the Owls will prove whether or not last week was a fluke in a game that they should win at home if they are, indeed, for real.

Navy's 34-17 loss to Ohio State was much closer than the score would indicate. The Midshipmen, who rushed for 370 yards in the losing effort, are favored by 4 despite Temple's victory and playing on the road.

Pick: Navy 23, Temple 20