Pick Six: Six teams in trouble early

North Carolina’s season of great expectations has been undercut

by a couple of NCAA investigations that have left the Tar Heel

short-handed and 0-2.

And just three weeks into the season, Chapel Hill isn’t the only

place where high hopes have turned into hard times. Six more teams

that are already staring at disappointing seasons:

– CINCINNATI. The two-time defending Big East champions said so

long to Brian Kelly, but with Butch Jones taking over for Kelly

again – just like he did at Central Michigan – the transition was

expected to be fairly smooth. Nope. The Bearcats are 0-2 against

FBS teams and their high-powered offense has been low voltage

instead. Cincy has scored 33 points in two losses.

– CONNECTICUT. The Huskies were a trendy pick to win the Big

East because of an experienced roster, solid defense and improved

quarterback play. Well, the Big East is still wide open, but loses

to Michigan and Temple showed UConn still can’t complete enough

passes to win big.

– GEORGIA. The idea that Mark Richt was coaching for his job

this season seemed a bit extreme in August. After an 0-2 SEC start,

the Bulldogs’ first since 1993, that doesn’t seem so outlandish

anymore.

– HOUSTON. The Cougars had BCS dreams and a Heisman Trophy

hopeful coming into the season. All that is over after UCLA pounded

Houston 31-13. Worse yet, record-setting quarterback Case Keenum

injured his knee making a tackle against the Bruins and is out for

the year. Oh yeah, and Keenum’s backup got hurt and is done for the

season. Now that’s a bad day.

– MISSISSIPPI. The late addition of transfer quarterback

Jeremiah Masoli filled what looked like the most glaring need for

Houston Nutt’s team. Losses to Jacksonville State and Vanderbilt in

Oxford have shown the Rebels have more problems than

quarterback.

– WASHINGTON. When Jake Locker decided to return to Seattle for

his senior season, Huskies fans thought the program would be ready

to win again. Instead, Washington is 1-2 with a loss to BYU (also

1-2) and a beat down at home from Nebraska. In what looks like a

tough Pac-10, it’s hard to see the Huskies getting to .500.