[Updated] We’re almost there. You can smell college football’s season coming around the corner. And we have a great first week of games.
Eliminating the Florida opener (because we all know how excited Gator fans are to be back in The Swamp), there are some can’t miss games on opening weekend.
Here are my five biggest to start the season:
- Auburn vs. Washington in Atlanta: Here’s why it is such a big game. If Washington loses, the downtrodden Pac 12 is going to have a difficult time earning any respect this season. The Huskies are the best team in the conference and this might be as big a game that conference has had in a long, long time. Auburn believes it can win the West again and is a national title contender. The winner of this game is going to have a quality win in its resume. The loser is going to be devastated.
- LSU vs. Miami in Arlington: Sunday night football will be electric and if LSU is truly down as so many people think, this could be the start of the Ed Orgeron watch. But if LSU wins, there is a new contender in the SEC. Miami has had a tendency to start fast and fade under Mark Richt. This is a huge game for both fan bases and both coaches.
- Michigan at Notre Dame: That’s where GameDay will be and there are some high expectations for both teams. The Irish may be a tad overrated, but a win here would change that. Michigan needs a big game win. Badly.
- Tennessee vs. West Virginia in Charlotte: This could be the start of Will Grier’s Heisman campaign and the belief is that the Vols have a rebuilding project under Jeremy Pruitt. But if they can pull off the upset, the perception will be much different.
- Alabama vs. Louisville in Orlando: The defending champs have new coordinators and the whole quarterback thing makes this must-see TV, if only because Louisville is dangerous.