Welcome to week 8 of college football season. Once again, road tests are the common theme to the games this week. Twelve teams ranked in the top 25 are playing on the road, with 3 of them against ranked opponents. With the number of great games on TV this weekend, it might not be a bad idea to let ESPN Goal Line take you around the country to follow the non-stop action.
As always, for channel numbers for a game in your area, please visit our TV Listings.
On to the games!
Early Game to Watch: North Carolina @ Clemson (Noon ET)
Clemson fans know they have a lot to be thankful for this season, but none more than true freshman Sammy Watkins. He’s scored 8 TDs over the first 7 games of his college career, making him the leader in the ACC. He also owns the school record for most all-purpose yards in a game, which he set last week with 345 yards (207 return yards, 105 receiving and 33 rushing). But he’s not the only weapon on the Clemson offense. Tajh Boyd is leading the ACC in touchdown passes, and running back Andre Ellington is 4th in the ACC in rushing yards per game. When UNC has the ball, quarterback Bryn Renner is the most efficient QB in the conference, leading the ACC in completion percentage and passer rating. They also have an explosive freshman of their own in running back Giovani Bernard, who’s looking for his 5th straight 100 yard game. Expect a high scoring game out of these two ACC favorites.
Other games to watch:
Oklahoma State @ Missouri (Noon ET) (this game is on FX)
Cincinnati @ USF (Noon ET)
Illinois @ Purdue (Noon ET)
Arkansas @ Ole Miss (Noon ET)
Mid-Day Game to Watch: Auburn @ LSU (3:30pm ET)
LSU’s defense has led them to the top ranking in the BCS, and for the third consecutive week, they’ll get to play against a quarterback making his first career start. Even with the loss of all-world cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, LSU’s defense will be a challenge for the struggling Auburn offense. Clint Moseley replaced an ineffective AU quaterback Barrett Trotter in last week’s win over Florida. Running back Michael Dyer had a big game against the Tigers last season and he’ll need to repeat that performance if they’re going to pull off an upset. LSU will continue to use quarterback’s Jarrett Lee to lead the aerial attack and Jordan Jefferson for the option game.
Other games to watch:
Maryland @ Florida State (3:30pm ET)
Georgia Tech @ Miami (3:30pm ET)
Air Force @ Boise State (3:30pm ET) (this game is on Versus)
Nebraska @ Minnesota (3:30pm ET)
Late Game to Watch: Wisconsin @ Michigan State (8:00pm ET)
On paper, Wisconsin may be the best team in the nation. They’re the top scoring team in the country at 50.2 points per game and third in scoring defense, allowing a measly 9.7 points per game. They run the ball really well (7th in the country) and have a Heisman Trophy candidate at quarterback in Russell Wilson. The one thing they don’t have is a quality schedule. They’ve only played one ranked team so far, Nebraska, who they blew out 48-17 at home. Michigan State on the road should be a good test. The Spartans are coming off a big win against Michigan and want to keep the momentum rolling. Their defense has been phenomenal with the exception of a loss to Notre Dame. But in this game, they’re going to need to score to win. Kirk Cousins and Edwin Baker will need to lead the offense to at least the mid-twenties for a chance to pull off the upset.
Other games to Watch:
Washington @ Stanford (8:00pm ET)
Tennessee @ Alabama (7:00pm ET)
USC @ Notre Dame (7:30pm ET)
What are you watching this week?
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