Watching the Top 25

Originally Published: October 21, 2004
ESPN.com

While 24 out of the Top 25 teams take the field this week, only two ranked teams face each other. No. 9 Texas faces No. 24 Texas Tech in a Big 12 South elimination game and No. 11 Michigan visits No. 12 Purdue.

Saturday, Oct. 23

WASHINGTON HUSKIES  at
No. 1 USC TROJANS
Los Angeles
6:30 p.m. ET
The Trojans' reward for back-to-back wins over Cal and Arizona State is a home date with Pac-10 cellar-dweller Washington.
• Insider breakdown: Can the Huskies a major blowout?

KANSAS JAYHAWKS  vs.
No. 2 OKLAHOMA SOONERS
Norman, Okla.
1 ET - FSN
It's pick your poison with the Sooners. Load up to stop Adrian Peterson and Jason White gets you. Stop White and Peterson runs over you.
• Insider breakdown: Can Kansas catch Oklahoma napping?

No. 3 MIAMI HURRICANES  vs.
NC STATE WOLFPACK
Raleigh, N.C.
7:45 ET - ESPN
The Hurricanes are No. 7 in scoring defense, while the Wolfpack is No. 72 in scoring offense. Sounds like a bad recipe for Chuck Amato's squad.
• Insider breakdown: Can Wolfpack find balance against Hurricanes?

KENTUCKY WILDCATS  at
No. 4 AUBURN TIGERS
Auburn, Ala.
2:30 p.m. ET
The Tigers are rolling behind a two-headed RB attack featuring Carnell Williams and Ronnie Brown and the excellent play of QB Jason Campbell.
• Insider breakdown: Can Kentucky stop Auburn's ground game?

No. 5 FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES  at
WAKE FOREST DEMON DEACONS
Winston-Salem, N.C.
3:30 p.m. ET - ABC
ABC coverage map
The Demon Deacons average 221.67 yards per game on the ground, but the Seminoles are only allowing 58 yards rushing per game.
• Insider breakdown: Can Wake Forest move the ball?

No. 6 GEORGIA BULLDOGS  at
ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS
Fayetteville, Ark.
7 p.m. ET - ESPN2
The Bulldogs, who travel outside the hedges for the first time since Week 2, can't afford another loss before the Cocktail Party.
• Insider breakdown: Can Georgia avoid another flop?

NORTHWESTERN WILDCATS  at
No. 7 WISCONSIN BADGERS
Madison, Wis.
Noon ET - ESPN
The Badgers' dominating D, fresh off a win over Kyle Orton and Purdue, face the challenge of Northwestern's high-octane offense this week.
• Insider breakdown: Can Wisconsin avoid a letdown?

No. 9 CALIFORNIA BEARS  at
ARIZONA WILDCATS
Tucson, Ariz.
7 p.m. ET
The Wildcats are still searching for that breakthrough win under Mike Stoops, but Aaron Rodgers and the Bears are an unlikely candidate.
• Insider breakdown: Can Arizona contain California's offense?

No. 9 TEXAS LONGHORNS  at
No. 24 TEXAS TECH RED RAIDERS
Lubbock, Texas
7 p.m. ET - TBS
Vince Young will try to lead the Longhorns to enough points to hang with Mike Leach's offensive machine on the South Plains.
• Insider breakdown: Can the Red Raiders make it a shootout?

UNLV REBELS  at
No. 10 UTAH UTES
Salt Lake City, Utah
7 p.m. ET
For Alex Smith and the Utes to reach that elusive BCS bowl game, Utah can't afford to overlook the nothing-to-lose Rebels.
• Insider breakdown: Can the Utes remain perfect?

No. 11 MICHIGAN WOLVERINES  at
No. 12 PURDUE BOILERMAKERS
West Lafayette, Ind.
3:30 ET - ABC
ABC coverage map
Kyle Orton and the Boilers look to leave last week's heartbreak behind when the Wolverines arrive at Ross-Ade Stadium on Saturday.
• Insider breakdown: Can Purdue stop the Wolverine receivers?

ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE  at
No. 13 TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS
Knoxville, Tenn.
3:30 p.m. ET - CBS
The Volunteers' freshmen QBs get a baptism in the annual third Saturday in October rivalry with the Crimson Tide.
• Insider breakdown: Can 'Bama handle the pressure of this game?

No. 15 VIRGINIA CAVALIERS  at
DUKE BLUE DEVILS
Durham, N.C.
1 p.m. ET
Since the sport is football instead of basketball, a trip to Durham is the perfect tonic for a Cavs team licking its wounds.
• Insider breakdown: Can Virginia take care of business?

FRESNO STATE BULLDOGS  at
No. 16 BOISE STATE BRONCOS
Boise, Idaho
10:15 p.m. ET
The Broncos return to the blue turf after last week's escape in Tulsa with their BCS hopes still alive.
• Insider breakdown: Can Fresno State maintain its winning ways?

TROY TROJANS  at
No. 17 LSU TIGERS
Baton Rouge, La.
8 p.m. ET
The Trojans knocked off the Big 12's Missouri Tigers at home earlier this year. But winning in Baton Rouge is a different story.
• Insider breakdown: Can Troy pull off another upset?

No. 19 FLORIDA GATORS  at
MISSISSIPPI STATE BULLDOGS
Gainesville, Fla.
12:30 p.m. ET
The well-rested Bulldogs couldn't score their first SEC win under Sylvester Croom against the Gators, could they?
• Insider breakdown: Can Florida avoid another disaster?

COLORADO BUFFALOES  at
No. 20 TEXAS A&M AGGIES
College Station, Texas
1:30 p.m. ET
Coach Fran's red-hot Aggies are undefeated at home and starting to look like a real contender in the Big 12 South.
• Insider breakdown: Will Texas A&M overlook Colorado?

No. 21 OKLAHOMA STATE COWBOYS  at
MISSOURI TIGERS
Columbia, Mo.
3:30 p.m. ET - ABC
ABC coverage map
With each having one loss in the Big 12, it's must-win time for Cowboys and Tigers to stay in the conference race.
• Insider breakdown: Can Oklahoma State remain in contention?

UCLA BRUINS  at
No. 23 ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS
Tempe, Ariz.
3:30 p.m. ET - ABC
ABC coverage map
Andrew Walter and the Sun Devils must recover quickly, as the improved Bruins head to Tempe looking for an Arizona sweep.
• Insider breakdown: Can Arizona State rediscover its offense?

BOSTON COLLEGE EAGLES  at
No. 25 NOTRE DAME FIGHTING IRISH
South Bend, Ind.
2:30 p.m. ET - NBC
The Fighting Irish can earn their second three-game win streak of the season, but the Eagles have played the spoiler in South Bend before.
• Insider breakdown: Can Boston College shock Notre Dame again?