Caparell is CSTV.com's football editor and national football writer. E-mail
Over the summer, CSTV.com will look at the college football schedule, highlighting the top matchups, the can't-miss games and the storylines that make some contests so intriguing. Check in every Thursday for the heads-up on what games you simply have to see.
As we hit Week 2, we run into arguably the worst weekend of the year. Most of the big names are playing nobodies and you'll see some ugly, ugly scores. You could even see some ugly scores in the games we've highlighted as the week's best. But here's hoping we get a few close ones to hold us over until Week 3.
Games of the Week
Saturday, Sept. 6 - Cincinnati at Oklahoma
This one could have been another early season matchup between ranked teams if the NCAA had allowed Ben Mauk one more year of eligibility. But the higher-ups in Indianapolis didn't think he deserved it - an awful and shortsighted decision on their part - and the ruling probably will leave the Bearcats on the outside looking in when the polls are released this summer. But this still should be a pretty good matchup between two good defensive teams. Cincinnati doesn't have Oklahoma's level of talent, but that isn't going to stop them from trying to pull off an upset that wouldn't that much of an upset.
Saturday, Sept. 6 - BYU at Washington
The Cougars are the class of the Mountain West and everyone's favorite to crash the BCS party this winter. But can BYU get past its first of two straight Pac-10 foes? On the road in Seattle? All indications point to yes, but don't count out Jake Locker and a desperate Ty Willingham. The Cougars may be loaded on offense, but it's the defense that suffered a number of losses this off-season. Could the nation's longest winning streak - it would be 11 if BYU wins its opener vs. Northern Iowa - come to an end in Week 2?
Saturday, Sept. 6 - Oregon State at PennState
Beavers head East to face the Nittany Lions and 100,000-plus at Beaver Stadium. Tough assignment for Mike Riley's crew, but with an inexperienced quarterback taking the snaps for Joe Paterno, you never know. PennState has Top 25 talent and OregonState doesn't.
Saturday, Sept. 6 - Georgia Tech at BostonCollege
Here's your first chance to see how the triple-option works in the ACC. And it'll come against one of the better run stopping teams in the nation last season. The Eagles gave up an average of only 75 yards per game, second best in the nation last year, and considering the defensive line figures to be the strength of the unit, don't expect much - if any - dropoff in thatdepartment. Paul Johnson's attack at Navy last season averaged an NCAA-high 348 yards per game. I wouldn't bet on the Yellow Jackets racking up that many in Week 2.
Heisman Showcase of the Week
Saturday, Sept. 6 - Texas Tech at Nevada
The Red Raiders venture away from Lubbock and may need every bit of the Graham Harrell-Michael Crabtree connection they can muster if the defense doesn't do its job. Should the Red Raiders win this one? Of course. They'll be big favorites. But if that defense doesn't make stops against the offensive-minded Wolf Pack then the Red Raiders are going to need Harrell to bail them out once again. If the defense does makes stops and gets Harrell some extra possessions, this could be a great stat-padder for him.
Rivalry of the Week
Saturday, Sept. 6 - USF at UCF
As both teams continue to improve, this game will continue to grow in importance. It's not Florida State-Miami or Florida State-Florida, but it's a great showdown between the state's second tier programs who have big aspirations and are quickly closing the gap between them and the three big boys. This one would have been even better had Kevin Smith decided to stick around Orlando, but the Knights will just have to do without him. And then they have to deal with the Bulls' Matt Grothe and George Selvie. Of course, you could have made the case for Miami-Florida in this spot, but I have a feeling the Bulls and the Knights will be a more competitive game than the Canes and the Gators.