Top FBS Matchups 

Who: No. 16 South Florida Bulls at Pitt Panthers
When: Sept. 29 at 8 p.m. ET


Who: No. 18 Arkansas Razorbacks at No. 14 Texas A&M Aggies
When: Oct. 1 at noon ET (Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, Texas)


Who: Auburn Tigers at No. 10 South Carolina Gamecocks
When: Oct.1 at 3:30 p.m. ET


Who: Michigan State Spartans at Ohio State Buckeyes
When: Oct. 1 at 3:30 p.m. ET


Who: No. 13 Clemson Tigers at No. 11 Virginia Tech Hokies 
When: Oct. 1 at 6 p.m. ET


Who: No. 3 Alabama Crimson Tide at No. 12 Florida Gators
When: Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. ET


Who: No. 8 Nebraska Cornhuskers at No. 7 Wisconsin Badgers 
When: Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. ET

Watch Them Now

Tyrann Mathieu
5-9 | 175 | So. | CB

Key Notes: As usual, LSU's defense is better than expected, and it was supposed to be rock solid. Mathieu has played a big role in the Tigers muscling past Oklahoma for the No. 1 spot in the AP poll this week. He leads the team with 30 tackles, including 21 solo stops, and has three TFLs to go with five passes defended (1 INT). He has also forced fumbles in wins against then-No. 3 Oregon and then-No. 16 West Virginia. One of the nation's top CBs this season, Mathieu also had an interception and pass defended against the Mountaineers as he earned Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week honors. 

Other Players to Watch this Week:  Keenan Allen, California (So., WR); Jared Crick, Nebraska (DT, Sr.); Dominique Davis, East Carolina (Sr., QB); Alfonzo Dennard, Nebraska (Sr., CB); Logan Harrell, Fresno State (Sr., DT); Stephen Hill, Georgia Tech (So., WR); Ronnie Hillman, San Diego State (So., RB); Henry Josey, Missouri (So., RB); Nigel Malone, Kansas State (Jr., DB); Bacarri Rambo, Georgia (Jr., DB). 

Keep Your Eyes on This

All eyes will be on Madison, Wis., on Saturday for a historic contest that has been marked on Cornhusker fans' calendars since the Big Ten schedule came out. Add to the enormity of the night the fact that it's two top-10 teams -- Nebraska is No. 8 and host Wisconsin is ranked seventh -- and it may be one of the biggest games in the vaunted Huskers' history. NU brings its rejuvenated ground game, which is eighth nationally after pounding away for more than 300 yards each of the past two weeks, to Camp Randall Stadium, where the Badgers have lived on battering people at the line of scrimmage since current AD Barry Alverez -- a Husker LB in his playing days -- was on the sideline as Wisconsin's head coach. UW hasn't allowed a team to rush for 300 yards since 2005, and it will present its own problems for the Blackshirt defense. QB Russell Wilson is a dual threat and has quietly climbed among the frontrunners for the Heisman Trophy in the first month of the season. Both teams want the W, but don't be surprised if you see these names again when fans are getting ready for the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game in December.

No doubt it is one of the most difficult places to play and a program that has great tradition. This is a great opportunity, and I want our players to focus on what they need to do to play well. These guys have great players; we’ve got great players. Everybody needs to focus on what they need to do to play well.
-- Alabama coach Nick Saban on playing Florida in the Swamp

Sixteenth-ranked South Florida is used to being 4-0. The Bulls have won their first four games of the season five times in the 15-year history of the football program. Getting to 5-0 will be difficult as the Bulls hit the road to face Pitt, which has won three in a row in the series. That means little to coach Skip Holtz, who is quickly gaining a reputation building up programs, first at Connecticut, then at East Carolina and now in Tampa. He'll keep the pedal pushed on offense, hoping the Bulls add to their penchant for starting strong vs. Pitt. In its first four games of the year, USF has outscored opponents 126-31, including 65-7 in the first quarter.

When No. 6 Stanford and UCLA meet Saturday -- continuing a streak of the teams playing every year since 1946 -- the Cardinal will be looking to extend the nation's longest active winning streak. Stanford has won its last 11 contests, a stretch that hasn't been rivaled in the football annals since 1939-41 when the Cardinal won 13 consecutive games. The Bruins, who rank 98th nationally in total defense by allowing 412.3 yards per game, will have a tough time as Stanford is 18-2 at home since the start of 2007.

After averaging 50.5 points through its first two games, South Carolina, ranked 10th this week in the AP poll, hasn't posted more than 24 points in its last two outings. That's been alright as the Gamecocks' defense has allowed only 24 points during those games, including just a field goal last weekend against Vanderbilt. South Carolina has given up less than 300 yards per game to rank 23rd nationally in total defense. Auburn, the defending national champion, hopes to slow the Gamecocks as well, but it may be tough as the Tigers are 112th nationally against the rush, allowing 226.5 yards per game. USC sophomore RB Marcus Lattimore is third nationally by gaining 152.8 yards per game on the ground.    

Maybe you've seen this stat this week: Baylor QB Robert Griffin III has more touchdown passes this season -- 13 total -- then he has incompletions. True story. The junior signal-caller has completed 70 of 82 pass attempts this fall and leads the nation in passing efficiency at 236.2. He's been so effective that he owns an 18-point advantage on Wisconsin QB Russell Wilson (218.4), who is the only other quarterback in the nation with a rating above 200. The Bears will need more of that from Griffin if they hope to win their first conference road opener since 1995 when they head to Manhattan, Kan., to take on an energized Kansas State program. The Wildcats are sixth nationally in total defense, allowing just 246.3 yards per game, and seventh in scoring defense (10.3)

Is Bowling Green for real? The Falcons have jumped to their first 3-1 start since 2007 and have already surpassed last year's win total, as BGSU was 2-10 in 2010. But they will need a signature win to make believers out of the pollsters. This weekend is a great chance as the Falcons look for a third consecutive road win to open the year, a feat last matched in 2002 when Urban Meyer was head coach, when they travel to No. 22 West Virginia. Current coach Dave Clawson has 54 freshmen or redshirt-freshmen and 27 sophomores on the squad that ranks in the national top 25 in eight categories, including scoring offense (21st, 38.5) and total defense (22nd, 294.3).