College football picks: Who wins Week 2's biggest games?

ESPN logo
Thursday, September 5, 2019

Week 2 brings two huge heavyweight bouts, and ESPN's college football experts are calling their shots. We'll start things off with a blueblood LSU-Texas battle and a rematch of last season's nail-biter between Clemson and Texas A&M. Out West, Cal's defense will be tried by Washington's Jacob Eason, and USC has to start a freshman quarterback against the Stanford defense. And what do we make of the Tennessee-BYU matchup after the Vols' disastrous loss to Georgia State? Let's take a look. (Lines courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.)

Jump to:

Texas A&M-Clemson | Cal-Washington | Stanford-USC | BYU-Tennessee

No. 6 LSU at No. 9 Texas

Time: 7:30 p.m. ET


Line: LSU -6.5


David Bearman: I am just not buying Texas and see LSU as more of a title contender, which they prove in Austin. LSU 29-10

Kyle Bonagura: Keeping with recent tradition, Texas can't navigate the nonconference schedule. LSU 31-24

David M. Hale: Joe Burrow has looked vastly improved since late last season, but the Texas defense is the best unit he's faced since Bama. Texas 23-21

Chris Low: Ed Orgeron might not have been the coach LSU zeroed in from the outset a few years ago, but he's the coach who has the Tigers on the move. LSU 31-28

Ivan Maisel: At long last, DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium has become a tough place to play. Texas 28-23


Andrea Adelson: Texas 24-21

Edward Aschoff: LSU 24-20

Bill Connelly: LSU 27-24

Heather Dinich: LSU 28-24

Preston Johnson: LSU 38-24

Doug Kezirian: LSU 31-20

Sam Khan Jr.: LSU 24-20

Adam Rittenberg: LSU 28-24

Alex Scarborough: LSU 31-27

Mark Schlabach: Texas 27-24

Tom VanHaaren: LSU 31-24

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

Time: 3:30 p.m. ET


Line: Clemson -17.5


David Bearman: Ultimately Clemson is the best team in the country until someone proves otherwise. Clemson 31-24

Heather Dinich: Dabo Swinney gets the last word against Jimbo Fisher -- again. Clemson 31-28

David M. Hale: It was close last season, but Travis Etienne had eight carries, Trevor Lawrence threw nine passes, and Justyn Ross played one snap in that game. Clemson 28-20

Sam Khan Jr.: Jared Hocker said it; his teammates will back him up. The Aggies' D-line stifles Lawrence and Etienne in a shocker. Texas A&M 31-28

Mark Schlabach: The Aggies allowed only 8 rushing yards in a 41-7 rout of Texas State last week. It won't be nearly as easy to slow down Etienne. Clemson 41-34


Andrea Adelson: Clemson 35-24

Edward Aschoff: Clemson 34-24

Kyle Bonagura: Clemson 42-17

Bill Connelly: Clemson 38-24

Preston Johnson: Clemson 38-31

Doug Kezirian: Clemson 45-20

Chris Low: Clemson 35-24

Ivan Maisel: Clemson 31-20

Adam Rittenberg: Clemson 34-21

Alex Scarborough: Clemson 38-24

Tom VanHaaren: Clemson 34-28

Cal at No. 14 Washington

Time: 10:30 p.m. ET

TV: Fox Sports 1

Line: Washington -13.5


Andrea Adelson: The Huskies won't have much of a problem handling the Bears. Washington 38-20

Bill Connelly: Jacob Eason's first big chance to one-up Jake Browning. Washington 20-10

Doug Kezirian: Cal has shown minimal offensive progress, and its strong defense can do only so much. Washington 27-10

Adam Rittenberg: Both defenses are outstanding and control play, but the Eason-Aaron Fuller connection shines. Washington 23-13

Alex Scarborough: Cal's secondary is good, but Eason is better. Washington 34-20


Edward Aschoff: Washington 30-14

David Bearman: Washington 21-20

Kyle Bonagura: Washington 24-14

Heather Dinich: Washington 35-21

David M. Hale: Washington 17-14

Preston Johnson: Washington 31-13

Sam Khan Jr.: Washington 41-20

Chris Low: Washington 38-20

Ivan Maisel: Washington 17-13

Adam Rittenberg: Washington 23-13

Mark Schlabach: Washington 24-20

Tom VanHaaren: Washington 24-17

No. 23 Stanford at USC

Time: 10:30 p.m. ET


Line: N/A


Kyle Bonagura: Asking a true freshman quarterback (USC's Kedon Slovis) to make his first career start against Stanford is, well, less than ideal. Stanford 24-21

Doug Kezirian: Clay Helton is not a good coach, and now he has more issues, having lost quarterback JT Daniels for the season. Stanford 24-10

Ivan Maisel: It's hard for David Shaw's teams to make it look easy. But the Cardinal have too much for a young Trojans quarterback to overcome. Stanford 16-10

Adam Rittenberg: Many are writing off Helton and the Trojans, but they find a little magic with Slovis. USC 23-21

Alex Scarborough: With Daniels out for the season, USC's season is about to go into free fall. Stanford 28-13


Andrea Adelson: Stanford 21-17

Edward Aschoff: USC 23-21

David Bearman: USC 20-16

Bill Connelly: Stanford 21-17

Heather Dinich: Stanford 17-10

David M. Hale: Stanford 27-13

Preston Johnson: Stanford 20-17

Sam Khan Jr.: Stanford 26-23

Chris Low: Stanford 28-17

Mark Schlabach: Stanford 27-20

Tom VanHaaren: Stanford 28-13

BYU at Tennessee

Time: 7 p.m. ET


Line: Tennessee -3.5


Andrea Adelson: There's no beacon of hope shining for the Vols right now. BYU 33-31

Bill Connelly: Anxiety Bowl 2019. Tennessee 31-17

Heather Dinich: Just when Vols thought it couldn't get worse ... BYU 21-20

Chris Low: The Vols go from one of the most embarrassing losses in school history to a victory that breathes new life into a season already on life support. Tennessee 27-21

Mark Schlabach: Against my better judgement, I'm guessing the Volunteers figure out a way to turn things around. Tennessee 27-24


Edward Aschoff: BYU 27-20

Kyle Bonagura: BYU 28-24

David M. Hale: BYU 24-21

Preston Johnson: Tennessee 24-20

Doug Kezirian: Tennessee 28-24

Sam Khan Jr.: Tennessee 27-20

Ivan Maisel: Tennessee 31-28

Adam Rittenberg: Tennessee 23-17

Alex Scarborough: Tennessee 21-20

Tom VanHaaren: Tennessee 24-17

Related Video