There are two games that will catch most of the attention of college football fans on Saturday.
That’d be the Red River Showdown at the Cotton Bowl in the morning and early afternoon and Florida at LSU at night. Those are awesome games, don’t get me wrong.
I’ll be watching them both at some point on Sunday. But the first game I want to talk about won’t be played in Dallas or Baton Rouge – but instead, Boise.
Hawaii at No. 14 Boise State on Saturday night
This is a big week for me. Ever since Colt Brennan was throwing 50 passes every game when I was in high school, I’ve been a Hawaii football fan. Maybe the only one in this state.
The Warriors are back to playing a fun brand of football and having an identity. They’ve enjoyed a great start and are 4-1. They’re coming off a bye week, which is a really good thing because they need all the rest they can get before traveling to Boise, which might be the best Group of Five team in the country.
This is an important showdown between two of the Mountain West’s best teams. Hawaii’s aerial attack is great and a tough thing to stop because of all the different ways it can beat you. The Warriors’ defense has impressed me this season, too, but I’m still hesitant to say it’s good enough to beat a very tough Boise team on the road. They weren’t good enough at Washington and got blown out.
I think Boise has Washington’s level of talent. As much as I’d like to see it, I don’t see Hawaii pulling off the upset. I hope I’m wrong.
No. 6 Oklahoma at No. 11 Texas on Saturday morning
I love everything about this game. I love that Texas went to West Virginia last week and gutted out a great win over a tough Mountaineers team. I love that Oklahoma only led Kansas 21-7 at halftime last week then blew the Jayhawks out in the second half.
The quarterback battle in this one will be great to watch. Jalen Hurts and Sam Ehlinger are very similar guys. We know that they’re big and physical runners – Hurts is 6-foot-2 and 219 pounds of weight-lifter muscle while Ehlinger is a mini Tebow at 6-3, 230. Are they strong and consistently accurate throwers? That’s to be determined. But I love watching these two.
Who should I pick? Well, I guess I’ll have to go with Lincoln Riley over Tom Herman in this one.
No. 1 Alabama at No. 24 Texas A&M
Texas Tech at No. 22 Baylor
How about Baylor head coach Matt Rhule. That guy came in to an absolutely awful situation and has coached out of his mind. I’m pulling for the Bears to win this possible shootout and get to 6-0. Rhule is doing it the right way.
No. 7 Florida at No. 5 LSU
Whoa Nelly, this is gonna be a fun one.
I was wrong last week in this column (which is, unfortunately, becoming a trend) when I said Auburn was going to beat Florida. That’s on me. Florida’s defense continues to impress, and man, is it ever going to be put to the test against an LSU offense operating pretty efficiently under quarterback Joe Burrow.
Look, I’m as big a fan of a nasty defense just as the next guy is, but LSU is at home.
Under those lights.
On that Tigers’ eye at midfield.
With a fun new spread offense that’s averaging 54.6 points and 571 total yards per game.
And, of course, how can you not love Ed Orgeron?
Give me the Tigers to stay unbeaten.
Wyoming at San Diego State on Saturday night
Both teams have great defenses and offenses that struggle to move the ball. But that’s why I love this matchup.
Only a true college football fan understands. This will be a beautiful mess.
Give me the Aztecs to defend their home turf in a close one. A real close one.