On tap for Week 2 of the 2016 college football season are 75 total games, down 11 from Week 1’s 86 contests.
With the NFL kicking off this Thursday, college ball abandons that night all together and instead plays just two games on Friday night and a whopping 73 on Saturday (a 16-game increase vs. Week 1). It’s the only full week of the 2016 season without a Thursday night matchup.
Games featuring FCS opponents are down from Week 1’s 46 to 29. Though that’s a healthy reduction, 39% of Week 2’s games still include a team from the lower level.
Power vs. Power games drop from 14 last week to 12 this week and conference games rise from two to six. The American Athletic (Navy-UConn) and Sun Belt (Georgia Southern-South Alabama) both kick off league play this week.
Following is the 411 on Week 2. As always, the facts are unique to this week and are limited to FBS vs. FBS action.
OFF THIS WEEK (7)
- Kansas State
- (12) Michigan State
- Oregon State
- (7) Stanford
- Texas State
RANKED vs. RANKED (0)
- There are no ranked vs. ranked games in Week 2, down from the four we enjoyed in Week 1.
FIRST-EVER MEETINGS (2)
- Tulsa at (4) Ohio State
- UCF at (5) Michigan
LONGEST SERIES OF THE WEEK
Penn State-Pittsburgh and Duke-Wake Forest both meet for the 97th time in history this weekend.
OLDEST SERIES OF THE WEEK
Duke and Wake Forest first met 127-years ago, in 1889. The two teams played twice that year, in May (a Demon Deacon victory) and again in November (a win for the Blue Devils).
REUNITED (and it feels so good)
- Kansas and Ohio play for the first time since 1967.
STREAKS OF THE WEEK
5: Utah has won 5 straight over BYU.
7: South Carolina has won 7 straight over Mississippi State.
12: (23) Baylor has won 12 straight over SMU.
18: (8) Washington has won 18 straight over Idaho.
29: Florida has won 29 straight over Kentucky.
MOST-LIKELY WEEK 2 WINNERS BASED ON HISTORY (FBS vs. FBS only):
American: Navy (7-1 all-time) vs. UConn.
ACC: North Carolina (3-0 all-time) vs. Illinois.
Big 12: (11) Texas (4-0 all-time) vs. UTEP.
Big Ten: Nebraska (7-0 all-time) vs. Wyoming.
CUSA: Rice (4-1-1 all-time) vs. Army.
MAC: Ohio (1-0 all-time) vs. Kansas
MWC: Air Force (1-0 all-time) vs. Georgia State and Colorado State (1-0 all-time) vs. UTSA.
Pac-12: (8) Washington (27-0-1 all-time) vs. Idaho.
SEC: Auburn (3-0 all-time) vs. Arkansas State.
Sun Belt: Georgia Southern (2-0 all-time) vs. South Alabama.
Arkansas and TCU play for the first time since they were both Southwest Conference members
The Razorbacks and No. 15 Horned Frogs meet this Saturday night in Ft. Worth for the first time since Oct. 5, 1991. That was Arkansas’ final season in the old Southwest Conference, migrating to the SEC in 1992.
The Hogs nipped TCU 22-21 on their way to a 6-6 finish that year. The Frogs posted a 7-4 record in 1991, head coach Jim Wacker’s final season at the helm.
Auburn is 23-0 all-time vs. the Sun Belt
Auburn, which hosts Arkansas State on Saturday night, has never lost a game to a current Sun Belt school.
The Tigers are 1-0 vs. Appalachian State, 3-0 vs. Arkansas State, 1-0 vs. Georgia Southern, 2-0 vs. Idaho, 4-0 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette, 9-0 vs. Louisiana-Monroe and 3-0 vs. New Mexico State.
Ball State has won 3 straight vs. Indiana
Hailing from the MAC, Ball State is on an unlikely 3-0 run vs. in-state Big Ten rival Indiana. The wins came consecutively in 2008 (at Indiana), 2011 (at home in Muncie) and 2012 (at Indiana).
All-time the Cardinals are 3-4 vs. the Hoosiers meaning that Saturday afternoon’s game in Bloomington could get Ball State to .500 in the series.
Cal has never won at San Diego State
One of Saturday’s late-night games, Cal travels to San Diego State where it has lost in all three of its previous appearances, in 1995, 1994 and 1983.
On the flip side, the Golden Bears are a perfect 4-0 vs. the Aztecs in Berkley, the most recent game there last season.
Louisville is the only ranked team with a road game in Week 2
The No. 13 Cardinals’ Friday night trip to Syracuse is the only road action any Top 25 school will face this week.
No. 7 Stanford and No. 12 Michigan State both have the week off while the rest of the ranked field plays at home.
Middle Tennessee has never lost at Vanderbilt
Another lopsided series, Conference USA’s Middle Tennessee is 3-1 all-time vs. SEC Vanderbilt and 3-0 vs. the Commodores in Nashville.
The three wins (2001, 2002 and 2005) are also the Blue Raiders’ only wins ever over an SEC squad.
Middle Tennessee and Vanderbilt play Saturday afternoon in Nashville.
Penn State and Pitt play for the first time since 2000
After a 16-year break, Penn State and Pitt renew their 89-game rivalry this Saturday at high noon in Pittsburgh.
The series dates back to 1893 and was played consecutively between 1900-1931, 1935-1992 and 1997-2000. Penn State holds a 50-42-4 all-time advantage.
Tennessee and Virginia Tech play at Bristol Motor Speedway
More than just the next unique venue for a college athletic event, No. 17 Tennessee vs. Virginia Tech at 180,000 seat Bristol Motor Speedway is set to smash the all-time single-game college football attendance record.
The current record stands at 115,109, the number of people who packed into Michigan Stadium to see Michigan beat Notre Dame back in 2013. Projected attendance at Bristol this Saturday night is in the neighborhood of 150,000.
It’s not the first time college football has been played at a NASCAR venue as Bethune-Cookman (located in Dayton Beach, Fla.) beat Florida A&M, Mississippi Valley State, Savannah State and Alabama A&M at Daytona International Speedway during the 1974-75 seasons.
Virginia has never beaten a Pac-12 Opponent
The Cavaliers travel to Eugene, Oregon this weekend for a Saturday night clash with the No. 24 Ducks. The game could earn Virginia—which has fielded a football team since 1888—it’s first-ever win vs. a Pac-12 foe.
Virginia is 0-1 vs. Oregon, 0-2 vs. USC, 0-2 vs. UCLA and 0-1 vs. Washington.
Only one of the six games (a 1976 loss to Washington) was played prior to 2008.
Washington State has never lost to Boise State
The Cougars are a perfect 4-0 all-time vs. the Broncos, the two teams playing a pair of home-and-homes in 2000-01 and 1997-98.
But, those series were played just prior to Boise State’s meteoric rise. The Broncos didn’t move up to the FBS ranks until 1996 and though they didn’t earn any love in the AP the first six years after the move (1996-2001), they’ve earned mention in at least once in every season since.
The two teams renew their friendship late Saturday night on the blue turf on ESPN2.
Historical data courtesy of Stassen.com and College Football Data Warehouse.