June 9, 2006
Brian is an assistant editor for CSTV.com and contributes on a regular basis.
Over the summer, CSTV.com will be taking a look at the college football schedule, highlighting the top matchups, the can't-miss games and the storylines that make certain contests so intriguing. Check in every Friday for the heads-up on what games are shaping up to be the best each week, the worst each week and a few others that have piqued our interest.
As we go into the fourth week of the college football season, conference play starts to pick up in both the Pac-10 and the Big Ten. However, there are some out-of-conference matchups as well that intrigue, such as
Game of the Week
It's a matchup between the two teams that shared the Big Ten title last season, as Joe Paterno's Nittany Lions head into Columbus for a showdown against the Buckeyes. Ohio State will be looking to avenge last season's 17-10 loss to Penn State in State College, which gave the Buckeyes their second loss of the season, just five games into the year. The difference in this year's matchup is while Troy Smith returns at quarterback for Ohio State, the Nittany Lions will be without the services of QB Michael Robinson, who ran for a touchdown and rushed for 52 yards in PSU's victory last season.
Games to Watch
If you want to see an offensive shootout, then this may just be the game to watch. We saw what
's offense was capable of last year, and we can expect more of the same from the Sun Devils in 2006. Meanwhile, expectations are high for the Cal Bears. Finishing with an 8-4 record last season and a No. 25 ranking, the Bears return 18 starters from last season. This includes the return of the nation's most productive running back duo in Marshawn Lynch and Justin Forsett. While Lynch ran for 1,246 yards last season, Forsett recorded 999 rushing yards. Arizona State
Sat. Sept 23 -
The Wolverines could be entering this game with either a lot of momentum, or a lot of disappointment, as the Wolverines are in
Sat. Sept 23 - Tulane at LSU
One week before the Green Wave return home to New Orleans to play in their first "true" home game since Hurricane Katrina, Tulane makes the short trip to Baton Rouge to face the Tigers. Tulane and LSU will be renewing their long in-state rivalry, as the teams announced last summer that they will play a ten-year home-and-home series beginning in '06. An interesting fact about this rivalry is Tulane has played LSU more than any other team in its history.
Rivalry of the Week
Sat. Sept. 23 - Notre Dame at Michigan State
Who can forget the classic matchup these two had last season, when the Spartans' Jason Teague ran it in from 19 yards out in overtime to score the game-winning touchdown for MSU in a thrilling 44-41 Spartan upset in
Mismatch of the Week
What a horrendous stretch of the schedule for the Rice Owls - a team that finished 1-10 last season. After visiting UCLA and then hosting defending champion