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College Football's Games To Watch: Week One

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A quick look at games of interest around the country on the first full weekend of college football. This week: Cool uniforms, coaching hypocrisy and a game in Ireland.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

In this feature I'll be taking a look each week at games of note around the country. Some have ACC ties while others will have national title implications or potential embarrassment to Virginia Tech's rivals. All games will be approached with biting sarcasm.

Penn State vs. Central Florida  8:30 AM Dublin, Ireland on ESPN2

I have no idea why this game is being played where it is, but it's good news if you can't even wait for ESPN's College Gameday to start before you start screaming to, "Shut up and start the games!" Penn State is favored despite UCF being nearly ranked and not on probation. This could be an interesting start to the day, or night cap from Friday if you're the ambitious sort.

No. 5 Ohio State vs. Navy  12 PM Baltimore, MD on CBS Sports Network

This game was intriguing before Braxton Miller's injury and now it's officially an upset alert. OSU should win ultimately, but Navy is always a tough out and they'll have a "neutral" Maryland crowd at their backs. They'll also be wearing these sharp new uniforms. Who knew Under Armour had class?


No. 16 Clemson @ No. 12 Georgia  5:30 PM on ESPN

This was a great game last season but the Tigers have to replace a number of amazing weapons on offense including veteran quarterback Tajh Boyd. Of course Georgia is also looking to replace starting QB Aaron Murray so it may be a wash in this first game which means another close tilt. After this one Clemson plays South Carolina State before travelling to No. 1 Florida State and then a home date with No. 23 UNC. Rough draw out of the gate for Dabo.

Fresno State @ No. 15 USC  7:30 PM on FOX

This game begs the question, "Can one lose control of a program before even coaching a game?" Just this week Steve Sarkisian had one player quit the team and call him a racist while another fabricated an elaborate story about saving his nephew from drowning to explain away two high ankle sprains. Somewhere north, Sarkisian's life coach Pete Carroll is laughing maniacally knowing full well that Sark will be coaching the Raiders in two seasons.

No. 1 Florida State vs. Oklahoma State  8 PM Arlington, TX on ABC

Florida State begins the long march back to the national championship game with what could easily turn into an interesting affair. FSU is still immensely talented, but they lost enough key pieces that there will be new guys breaking in new roles. That leaves some opportunity for Mike Gundy's crew to get on the champs early. Jameis Winston may have gotten away with his crab legs suspension free (for football at least), but Jimbo Fisher sure isn't going to let teammates go unpunished for hitting the QB in practice. Mmmm that's some delicious hypocrisy.

No. 14 Wisconsin vs. No. 13 LSU  9 PM Houston, TX on ESPN

Talk about a contrast in styles. Wisconsin's sturdy ground game will go up against the speed of Les Miles' Tiger squad. I think LSU should win but it won't be without a fight. This is by far the Badgers' toughest game of the season and they stand an excellent shot to run the table after this one win or lose. They're thinking playoffs (how cool is it to say that?).

Miami @ Louisville  8 PM Monday, Sept. 1 on ESPN

Miami welcomes Louisville to the ACC in grand fashion on Labor Day. There was a time when no one came into Papa John's Stadium and pushed the Cardinals around, but gone are Teddy Bridgewater and Charlie Strong. Good news though, the old coach is back. Bobby Petrino has returned which teaches an important lesson to Louisville's players. You can never go home again...unless you abandon it for greener pastures, quickly abandon that pasture for another one, then make a serious mistake and literally fall on your face. After a year in purgatory (sorry Western Kentucky) then, and only then can you come crawling back home.