The fifth Saturday of the college football season on Sept. 28 is a great relief. After last week had blowout after blowout in college football, some actual games between top 25 teams are a much needed palate cleanser. But this Saturday is a familiar one as well, in that the Georgia Bulldogs are part of the game of the week against another top 10 program in the LSU Tigers.
The Bulldogs started the season by losing to the Clemson Tigers, before saving their season over the South Carolina Gamecocks. Yet No. 9 Georgia’s September gauntlet of death finally comes to an end in Athens, as No. 6 LSU pays a visit.
If the Bulldogs knock off the Tigers and get out of this month with just one loss, it could be smooth sailing for Georgia until the SEC title game. It can still be perfect the rest of the way and win the division even with a loss to LSU, but its BCS title hopes would be dashed with another loss. However, a win and a perfect record until the first week of December would put the Bulldogs right in line for the national title game.
Of course, a win for LSU would put it right in line for a title shot, at least until its latest mega showdown with the Alabama Crimson Tide on Nov. 9. But first, the Tide have one of today’s other big games to worry about, as some troubling performances might have made them vulnerable to a visit from the surprising Ole Miss Rebels.
There are at least two other big showdowns outside of the SEC in Week 5, in between the expected blowouts that were so common last week. Here is a list of the major college football games to watch on Sept. 28, as the first month of the year tries to end on a high note.
No. 9 LSU vs No. 6 Georgia: 3:30 p.m.
The Bulldogs had higher preseason expectations than the Tigers, despite their tough opening stretch. But with a win in Athens, LSU will officially become the biggest threat left to Alabama in the SEC — if not the country — while Georgia would be out of the BCS title picture with three months to spare.
No. 21 Ole Miss vs No. 1 Alabama: 6:30 p.m.
The Tide haven’t played a dominating game on both sides of the ball so far. With the Rebels riding a hot start and a top 25 ranking, can they scare Nick Saban and the Tide or possibly do even more?
No. 23 Wisconsin vs No. 4 Ohio State: 8 p.m.
Kenny Guiton has lit up the opposition in place of the injured Braxton Miller — which will make the prime time game of the week even more intriguing if Miller comes out struggling against the Badgers. Even if the Buckeyes survive, will a quarterback controversy throw a wrench into Urban Meyer’s perfect start in Columbus?
Irish vs Sooners
No. 14 Oklahoma vs No. 22 Notre Dame: 3:30 p.m.
The Irish used a win in Oklahoma to help them finish their run to the BCS title game last year. Notre Dame isn’t perfect this year as it hosts the rematch, but it will need a win over Oklahoma to at least keep its BCS at-large goal alive. However, revenge can help the Sooners make a case for a top 10 comeback.
California vs No. 2 Oregon: 10:30 p.m.
The Ducks have scored no fewer than 59 points in every game so far, while the Bears have already been lit up by the Buckeyes and Northwestern Wildcats. As such, anything less than 50 points in this game would be cause for concern for Oregon.
No. 5 Stanford vs Washington State: 10:30 p.m.
The Cardinal and Kevin Hogan have been shaky at various points in their first three games, in contrast with the thorough dominance of Oregon. With Stanford still over a month away from facing Oregon, it needs to nip any problems in the bud pretty soon.
Manziel leaves home
No. 10 Texas A&M vs Arkansas: 7 p.m.
After being protected by the friendly confines of College Station all month, Johnny Manziel will finally face some boos as the Aggies go on their first road trip.