Unbeaten teams should fall in bunches
It wouldn't be surprising if after this weekend Hawaii is the only unbeaten team left in major college football and the national championship race has undergone an extreme makeover.
Six games matching ranked teams will be played this weekend, starting tonight when No. 2 Boston College plays at No. 8 Virginia Tech. For the undefeated Eagles, who are also in second place in the BCS standings, it's their toughest test of the season so far.
No. 1 Ohio State is in a similar situation Saturday night. The unbeaten Buckeyes, on top of the BCS standings, go to No. 24 Penn State.
In the Pac-10, No. 5 Oregon hosts No. 9 Southern California. The Trojans are an underdog against a conference opponent for the first time since 2001.
The other big Pac-10 game matches No. 7 Arizona State against No. 18 California. The unbeaten Sun Devils were fourth in the last BCS standings.
Back East in the Big East, No. 6 West Virginia is at No. 25 Rutgers, and down in the SEC No. 9 Florida and No. 20 Georgia renew their annual rivalry in Jacksonville, Fla.
Unbeaten and 12th-ranked Kansas also has a tough task Saturday, playing at Texas A&M.
As for the lowest ranked of the unbeatens, No. 16 Hawaii plays New Mexico State.
No. 2 Boston College (plus 3 1/2) at No. 8 Virginia Tech
Hokies are 13-2 in Thursday night ESPN games, only losses to BC ... VIRGINIA TECH 23-20.
No. 1 Ohio State (minus 4) at No. 24 Penn State
Buckeyes have won 18 straight in Big Ten since losing to Lions in '05 ... OHIO STATE 24-13.
No. 9 Southern California (plus 3) at No. 5 Oregon
USC is third in nation in total defense; Ducks second in total offense ... USC 27-24.
No. 6 West Virginia (minus 6) at No. 25 Rutgers
Mountaineers have won 12 straight against Scarlet Knights ... WEST VIRGINIA 38-27.
No. 18 California (plus 3) at No. 7 Arizona State
Golden Bears haven't lost three straight since 2001 ... CAL 28-24.
No. 9 Florida (minus 9) vs. No. 20 Georgia at Jacksonville, Fla.
Gators have won 15 of last 17 meetings ... FLORIDA 30-23.
No. 11 South Florida (minus 4 1/2) at Connecticut
UConn is 0-11 against ranked opponents ... SOUTH FLORIDA 27-17.
No. 12 Kansas (minus 2 1/2) at Texas A&M
Aggies are 7-1 against Jayhawks, having lost first meeting in '74 ... TEXAS A&M 20-17.
Iowa State (plus 28 1/2) at No. 13 Missouri
The Telephone Trophy is on the line; Cyclones claimed it last season ... MISSOURI 55-17.
Mississippi State (plus 13 1/2) at No. 14 Kentucky
Wildcats have won four of last five against Bulldogs ... KENTUCKY 34-17.
No. 15 South Carolina (plus 3) at Tennessee
Steve Spurrier is 8-4 against Phillip Fulmer, but has split last six ... TENNESSEE 26-20.
New Mexico State (plus 27) at No. 16 Hawaii
Colt Brennan has thrown nine INTs in last three games ... HAWAII 59-20.
Nebraska (plus 21) at No. 17 Texas
Huskers have been outscored 122-34 during three-game skid ... TEXAS 35-17.
Minnesota (plus 23 1/2) at No. 19 Michigan
Gophers are last in the nation in total defense (534 ypg) ... MICHIGAN 48-13.
No. 21 Virginia (minus 3) at N.C. State
Cavaliers have won five games by five points or less ... VIRGINIA 28-14.
Mississippi (plus 17 1/2) at No. 23 Auburn
Six of last eight meetings have been decided by fewer than 10 points ... AUBURN 27-13.
Last week's record: 12-5 (straight); 11-6 (vs. points). Season: 135-30 (straight); 78-68-2 (vs. points).