Jarrod Beckstrom is a globally nomadic sports-addicted renewable energy advocate fisherman. He’s the former communications manager of USA Rugby and has been covering high school, college, and international rugby since 2004. His opinions and picks don’t necessarily reflect the views of USA Rugby or D1A Rugby. Follow him on Twitter (@willcrawlthere). He welcomes well-informed and civil rugby discourse.
BOULDER, Colo. — Some teams, I’m afraid, are out of their depth this weekend and might suffer a bit. The good news is, it’s only one game and it’s early days yet (except for those midwesterners in the Big 10, who completed their regular season well before Thanksgiving).
Here are my picks for the week:
Stanford (0-2) @ SDSU (1-1)
Pick: SDSU. While they may be without star pivot Kalei Konrad, SDSU has a good forward pack led by All-American hooker Jamie Kelm. Coach Matt Hawkins is back on the sidelines for SDSU after missing their first two encounters due to his playing commitments with the USA Men’s National Team. That will give his charges a boost against a visiting Stanford side.
UC-Davis (0-1) @ Cal Poly (2-0)
Pick: Poly. They’ve been strong so far this season, beating SDSU and UCSB without much drama.
UCSB (0-2) @ St. Mary’s (3-0)
Pick: St. Mary’s. Just going to be too much for the Gauchos.
Santa Clara (1-1) @ Sacramento State (0-2)
Pick: Santa Clara.
Northern Colorado (0-0) @ Arkansas State (0-0)
Pick: A. State. All day. NC is capable of elevating their game, especially if they regularly play top teams like Arkansas State.
Delaware (0-0) @ Life (0-0)
Pick: Life. Extremely experienced and well-coached, Life will simply outgun, outrun, and out muscle Delaware.
Baylor (0-1) @ Texas Tech (1-0)
Pick: Tech. Baylor has shown they have some game, but Tech is coming off a massive win and Baylor is coming off a sizable loss. There is too much ground to make up in a week for Baylor.
Oklahoma (1-0) @ Texas (0-0)
Pick: OU. This will probably be a tight one. These teams don’t love each other and it’s always special when the Sooners and Longhorns square off. (This from a die hard Oklahoma State fan, I’ll admit it, it hurt a bit to type that previous sentence.) I think the Sooners pull it off and go to the top of the ARC table.
Sam Houston State @ Texas A&M
Pick: Sam Houston State. It might be crazy to bet against the Aggies at home, but I think Sam Houston State shake off their loss to Tech last week and come out strong against a struggling A&M team.