TEXAS SCHOOLS ROUND UP

Week 2 football rankings for the 12 Division 1 colleges in Texas

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Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio and Sports. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!


12. RICE

The season didn't start off great for Rice, with a close loss to Army 14-7. There wasn't a lot of expectations on this team, coming off of a two win season last year means they don't need to do a lot to show improvement and Army is on a much better trajectory right now than they are, so a close loss is close to a moral victory, right? Maybe. They have Wake Forest this week and it's another game they aren't expected to win, but hey keeping it close would be a great first step for this program.

11. TEXAS STATE

After a brutal opener on the road against ranked Texas A&M, Texas State while maybe not as bad as the eleventh team in the state, is on the mat looking up. They do have the luxury of playing Wyoming who just came off an exciting, emotional win over Missouri and they are at home. So it's a long flight to play a team who just lost and the whole flight Wyoming has got to be thinking this will be an easy game. So there's a chance this is the only week Texas State is this low.

10. UTEP

Coming off a win they should get 10 out of 10 times against Houston Baptist, when teams do what they're supposed to do you don't punish them by moving them down the rankings. This week they're playing in Lubbock against Texas Tech so if this were a stock, I'd be selling this weekend. Hard.

9. UTSA

University of Texas San Antonio beat Incarnate Word so they're in basically the same boat as UTEP. They won when they should and now they're playing a school that should beat them, in this case Baylor. Also in this case, the game is on the road in a loud, hostile stadium and the road team isn't expected to win by anyone.

8. SMU

On the road against what is probably a team as equally as talented as they are, they won. If there's one team this week that is in a position for an upset, from this list, it's SMU playing North Texas this weekend. North Texas is a little better than SMU and while it wouldn't be a huge upset, I'm saying from the perspective of this list it would be one. This is an important game for both of these programs this week.

7. TEXAS TECH

So I don't believe in punishing a team for beating teams you're supposed to beat but I'm also not in the business of rewarding teams that win when they're supposed to either. This week they're playing UTEP at home and again they're expected to win, so while winning won't lower them, it won't exactly raise them in the rankings either.

6. NORTH TEXAS

Put up 51 points against Abilene Christian last weekend and this week they're playing on the road at SMU. The expectations for the season aren't sky high but they are absolutely expected to beat SMU, who while they are talented, aren't putting this kind of points on the board coming off a close game last weekend.

5. BAYLOR

They took care of business in what should be called a warm up game against Stephen F Austin. This week the fine tuning should continue against UTSA, this isn't projected to be a close game and really Baylor is in a lose-lose situation. If they win, it isn't like this would move them up at all, but if they lose it's going to hurt their whole season.

4. HOUSTON

This Oklahoma game came too early in the season for Houston, fresh off the Major Applewhite experiment, there just hasn't been enough time to convince this team that they aren't the train wreck they were last year. From this loss against dark horse Heisman hopeful Jalen Hurts, Houston now gets the chance to start building positive momentum against Prairie View.

3. TCU 

Beating monsters of the world Arkansas-Pine Bluff, TCU should feel like a team that is ready for real football to start. However they're off this week so, check back next week for these guys.

2. TEXAS A&M

After taking care of business against Texas State, they're now ready to go into Clemson and see if they can knock off the defending National Champions. There are expectations on this team and with Texas playing LSU the battle for Texas supremacy is winnable if A&M can beat Clemson there's a good chance Texas will lose to LSU. So either A&M can take the reins or things stay pat if they both lose.

1. TEXAS 

They got in their warmup game against LA Tech so now they're ready for LSU right? This is one of the two must watch games this weekend and all eyes will be on this match up. We'll see where everything shakes out after this game.

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T

Deshaun Watson had an up and down day. Tim Warner/Getty Images

So what does Bill O'Brien have in store for a Sunday encore in the clock management follies department? All's well that ends well for the Texans if another Billy Botch episode comes with another win. Get it and home games vs. the Panthers and Falcons make 4-1 a very legit possibility.

The Texans have a good shot to get the win in Los Angeles Sunday. They may have half the crowd rooting for them. The Chargers have the lamest homefield advantage in the NFL. L.A. has largely yawned at them since their move up the coast from San Diego. In their home opener the Chargers couldn't sell out the 27,000 seat soccer stadium serving as their temporary facility. Next season they move into the monument of wow and greed they'll share with the Rams. That place will hold about 70,000.

On the field it's a big game for the also 1-1 Chargers if they hope to hang with Kansas City in the AFC West race. The Chargers' three following games are at the joke Dolphins, then home vs. the not good Broncos and the Roethlisberger-less Steelers.

For the Texans, one major subplot is a constant. How porous will the offensive line be? Deshaun Watson has been sacked 10 times over the first two games. The Chargers have one of the NFL's better pass rushing duos in Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. If the Texans can protect, opportunity knocks for big plays downfield with the Chargers down both of their starting safeties. Rookie All-Pro Derwin James is on injured reserve recovering from a broken foot, Adrian Phillips broke an arm last Sunday at Detroit.

Warm California sun

So if you were 300 strikeout man Gerrit Cole, what would you be thinking about re: 2020 and beyond? I mean after next month ideally helping the Astros win the World Series. And if you are the Astros what are you thinking?

In his two Astro seasons Cole has been tremendous. The ballclub is tremendous, and if Cole re-signs it that much more figures to stay tremendous for at least another couple of seasons. But Gerrit Cole is to become the most highly coveted free agent on the market. The low end of what he should be able to command is probably in the six years 150 million range. Heck, he could get seven years 250 million.

Next year the Astros payroll is set to soar into competitive balance tax territory. Meaning, in addition to the payroll itself, the Astros are looking at paying millions in penalties if they pay up to keep Cole. To counter that the Astros certainly could pivot and trade Zack Greinke. They basically will be open to giving away Josh Reddick and the 13 million he'll make in the final year of his contract.

Maybe Jim Crane and his partners say this is such a special era, we'll forego huge chunks of profits to keep this core together. That would be fantastic, but drawing a line on how far they'll go to keep Cole would not be miserly. Long term megadollar pitching contracts carry large risks. Cole turns 30 next season.

Cole grew up in Southern California. His wife too. It's where they live in the offseason. He went to high school under five miles from Angels Stadium and grew up an Angels fan. The Angels have a desperate need for starting pitching. Even with Cole though, the Angels can't essentially promise perennial contender status. But the Dodgers can, every bit as much as the Astros, and the Dodgers have much deeper pockets. If the Coles want to spend the rest of Gerrit's prime pitching years living year-round back home in SoCal, no one should take offense. Still, if the Astros’ bid is competitive when factoring in income tax rates, proven comfort level with the team, air conditioned comfort for home games…

Big weekend for Aggies

Better college football schedule this week after the garbage card of a week ago. The biggest game nationally is seventh ranked Notre Dame at number three Georgia. Big game for Texas A&M vs. Auburn at Kyle Field Saturday. The 17th ranked Aggies are three and a half point favorites over the eighth ranked team in the nation. A hard fought loss wouldn't be shameful, but would mean that with games yet to come vs. Alabama, at Georgia, and at LSU, the Ags would have to pull off at least one upset to finish better than 7-5. 75 million dollars to lure Jimbo Fisher were not spent to yield any 7-5 seasons.

Buzzer Beaters:

1. Major Applewhite would have coached the Cougars to a 1-3 start much more economically for UH than Dana Holgorsen has. 2. The Tulane Green Wave wearing powder blue uniforms is just as dopey as the St. John's Red Storm and Duke Blue Devils wearing black. 3. Names that Houstonians should rule out for daughters: Bronze-Imelda Silver-Allison Gold-Alicia

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