College Football Preview: Today’s Top 25 roundup
Associated PressAUSTIN, Texas ó Mack Brown knows it’s coming.
At some point during warmups before No. 1 Texas plays No. 11 Missouri tonight, Longhorns freshman safety Blake Gideon will seek out the coach who has won a national championship and say: “I hope you’re not nervous.”
Gideon does it every week and it’s a pretty funny line coming from a guy who has played six games. But Brown and the Longhorns have plenty to worry about if they expect to hold on to their first regular-season No. 1 ranking since 1984 for long.
Texas (6-0, 2-0 Big 12) has never before played four ranked opponents in a row. Considering three of them are rivals in the Big 12 South, the Longhorns should be focused as much on chasing the division championship as the national title right now.
“We have the most ridiculous schedule ever,” quarterback Colt McCoy said. “We can’t slip up.”
Neither can Missouri (5-1, 1-1 Big 12) if the Tigers plan to be in the national title hunt. Missouri might have been No. 1 this week if it hadn’t lost at home against No. 8 Oklahoma State last week, when quarterback Chase Daniel threw three interceptions.
A Missouri win would start yet another ripple throughout the polls, just in time for the first Bowl Championship Series ratings to be released on Sunday.
McCoy is 26-6 as a starter and has led nine second-half comeback wins, including last week’s 45-35 win over then-No. 1 Oklahoma in Dallas.MISSISSIPPI (3-3) at No. 2 ALABAMA (6-0)
Crimson Tide is 21-1 vs. Rebels in Tuscaloosa, with only loss coming in 1988.
MICHIGAN (2-4) at No. 3 PENN STATE (7-0)Nittany Lions haven’t beaten Wolverines since 1996, losing nine straight, they’re longest losing skid to any foe under Paterno.
No. 16 KANSAS (5-1) at No. 4 OKLAHOMA (5-1)Since 2002, Sooners have won 21 straight Big 12 home games by average score of 42-14.
No. 6 SOUTHERN CAL (4-1) at WASHINGTON STATE (1-6)In beating Cougars last five seasons, Trojans have outscored WSU by combined 205-77.
No. 7 TEXAS TECH (6-0) vs. TEXAS A&M (2-4)A win is a must for Texas Tech, with No. 16 Kansas, top-ranked Texas, No. 8 Oklahoma State and No. 4 Oklahoma next on the schedule.
BAYLOR (3-3) at No. 8 OK. STATE (6-0)Oklahoma State, already with its highest ranking since 1985, can secure only the second 7-0 start in school history.
No. 22 VANDERBILT (5-1) at No. 10 GEORGIA (5-1)First place in the SEC East, believe it or not.
No. 12 OHIO STATE (6-1) at No. 20 MICH. STATE (6-1)
Buckeyes have beaten Spartans six straight overall and are 5-1 in East Lansing since 1992.
No. 13 LSU (4-1) at SOUTH CAROLINA (5-2)Under Steve Spurrier, Gamecocks are 2-7 vs. ranked teams at home.
COLORADO STATE (3-3) at No. 14 UTAH (7-0)The Rams could ruin Utah’s unbeaten start, No. 14 ranking and chances at making the BCS.
SYRACUSE (1-5) at No. 19 SOUTH FLORIDA (5-1)Syracuse is 0-2 in the conference, and an upset easily would be the Orange’s most significant accomplishment in four seasons under coach Greg Robinson.
No. 23 PITT (4-1) at NAVY (4-2)
Navy is looking for its second upset of a ranked team; the Midshipmen stunned then-No. 16 Wake Forest last month for its first in 23 years.
No. 25 CAL (4-1) at ARIZONA (4-2)The Golden Bears are looking to hold onto the top spot in the early Pac-10 race.