Michigan (4-3) at Iowa (5-2)
Time: 9 a.m. Turf: Grass. Line: Iowa by 2-½.
Analysis: The Wolverines took a step toward salvaging their season by defeating Penn State. They encounter the infamous pink visitors’ locker room at Kinnick Stadium, but that is only part of the advantage for Iowa. The Hawkeyes have won a school-record 22 consecutive home games. In that span, they have averaged 36.1 points, with an average winning margin of 24 points. Iowa is tied for the Big Ten Conference lead with Penn State and Wisconsin at 3-1. Those three teams are a half-game in front of Northwestern and Ohio State, who are each 2-1.
Nebraska (5-1) at Missouri (4-2)
Time: 9:30 a.m. Turf: Artificial. Line: Missouri by 1.
Analysis: Nebraska has been made a slight underdog by Nevada oddsmakers despite having beaten Missouri in 25 of the last 26 meetings. The offense rushed for a season-high 182 yards in a win over Baylor. Missouri coach Gary Pinkel, a former Washington offensive coordinator, said he is staying with quarterback Brad Smith despite the emergence of Chase Daniel. Nebraska, Missouri and Colorado are tied for first in the Big 12 North at 2-1.
No. 10 Texas Tech (6-0) at No. 2 Texas (6-0)
Time: 12:30 p.m. Turf: Grass. Line: Texas by 17.
Analysis: Texas Tech is likely to move the ball and score, barring turnovers. In the last three meetings with Texas, the Raiders have averaged 34.3 points. The trouble is that Texas has averaged 44 points against Texas Tech in that span. Fans will find out how improved the Tech defense is, after three games against nonconference patsies and three games against the Big 12 North. Cody Hodges is the quarterback of a Texas Tech team that leads the nation in points (53.7) and passing yards (472) per game. Texas quarterback Vince Young is 23-2 as a starter; he ran 25 times for 158 yards and four touchdowns in a 51-21 victory in Lubbock, Texas, last season. Longhorns coach Mack Brown said, “We just need to move the ball, not necessarily run the ball.”
No. 17 Tennessee (3-2) at No. 5 Alabama (6-0)
Time: 12:30 p.m. Turf: Grass. Line: Alabama by 4.
Analysis: Tennessee’s struggles prompted a seniors-only meeting. Linebacker Kevin Simon said, “We’re not going to lose this football game. We’re not going to be 3-3.” Alabama barely got past Mississippi, 13-10 last week. The Crimson Tide is ranked in the Top 10 nationally in rushing defense and pass defense. But Tennessee’s defense isn’t bad, either. Don’t expect a high-scoring game. Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer isn’t especially popular in Alabama, as he helped turn the Crimson Tide in for alleged NCAA recruiting violations in an episode that led to sanctions and lawsuits. Of the team’s fans, Alabama free safety Charlie Peprah said, “They really want this one. There’s only a couple of coaches they really don’t like. I don’t need to name them, but he’s up there on the list.”
Oregon State (4-2) at No. 8 UCLA (6-0)
Time: 4 p.m. Turf: Grass. Line: UCLA by 9-½.
Analysis: Oregon State upset California 23-20 last week for its first win in nine meetings against a ranked opponent. The Beavers will try for two in a row against UCLA. Oregon State quarterback Matt Moore has plenty of incentive, after leaving UCLA in 2003. UCLA coach Karl Dorrell, a former Washington assistant, said, “We’ve played against former players in the past, and it gets overdramatized as to the effect of what it’s really going to be.” Bruins QB Drew Olson took Moore’s starting job in 2003.
No. 16 Auburn (5-1) at No. 7 Louisiana State (4-1)
Time: 4:45 p.m. Turf: Grass. Line: LSU by 6-½.
Analysis: This is a matchup of the last two Southeastern Conference champions. Penalties had been the biggest worry in Baton Rouge, La. Then Louisiana State made nine turnovers in its last two games. Enter the dreaded ball-security drills in practice. If LSU can avoid being its worst enemy and harass Auburn quarterback Brandon Cox, good things could happen. LSU’s schedule delivers North Texas and Appalachian State next. Auburn, a 10-9 winner over LSU last year, was unbeaten last season and lost this year’s opener to Georgia Tech. Auburn has won its last 13 SEC games.
The Dallas Morning News and The Associated Press
|Today’s televised games|
|9 a.m.||Ohio State at Indiana||ESPN|
|9 a.m.||Northwestern at Michigan State||ESPN2|
|9:30 a.m.||Nebraska at Missouri||FSN|
|11:30 a.m.||Brigham Young at Notre Dame||Ch. 5|
|12:30 p.m.||USC at Washington||Ch. 4|
|12:30 p.m.||Tennessee at Alabama||Ch. 7|
|4 p.m.||Utah at UNLV||Ch. 4|
|4 p.m.||Penn State at Illinois||ESPN2|
|4 p.m.||Baylor at Oklahoma||FSN|
|4 p.m.||Oregon State at UCLA||TBS|
|4:45 p.m.||Auburn at Louisiana State||ESPN|
|7:15 p.m.||Washington State at California||FSN|
|9 p.m., tape||Texas-El Paso at Marshall||KWPX|
|***Must see **Worth watching *Only if you’re bored|