Watching the Top 25

Originally Published: November 18, 2004
ESPN.com

It's a light week for the Top 25 this week, just 16 teams in action. The highlights include No. 6 Utah's battle with BYU for the Beehive Boot and a spot in a BCS bowl (or, depending on your perspective, a spot in a BCS Bowl and the Beehive Boot). The other big games are Stanford visiting No. 4 Cal and No. 3 Auburn visiting Alabama.

Saturday, Nov. 20

No. 2 OKLAHOMA SOONERS  vs.
BAYLOR BEARS
Waco, Texas
Noon ET -- FSN
Oklahoma is 10th in total offense. Baylor is 91st in total defense. You do the math.
• Insider breakdown: Will the Bears make things interesting?

No. 3 AUBURN TIGERS  vs.
ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE
Tuscaloosa, Ala.
3:30 p.m. ET -- CBS
For all the talk about the Auburn offense, few realize the Tigers lead the SEC in scoring defense, allowing just 9.3 points per game.
• Insider Preview: Can the Tide spoil Auburn's dream?

STANFORD CARDINAL   at
No. 4 CALIFORNIA GOLDEN BEARS
Berkeley, Calif.
3:30 p.m. ET -- FSN
Cal is trying to win three straight vs. Stanford for first time since 1958-60. Do it and the Bears are one step closer to the Rose Bowl.
• Insider Preview: Can Stanford slow down Cal's offense?

BYU COUGARS  at
No. 6 UTAH UTES
Salt Lake City
7 p.m. ET -- ESPN2
Sure, Utah is chasing a BCS bowl, but this means plenty to BYU, which is out to become bowl-eligible and avoid a third-straight losing season.
• Insider Preview: Will the Utes take care of business?

No. 7 MICHIGAN WOLVERINES  vs.
OHIO STATE BUCKEYES
Columbus, Ohio
1 p.m. ET -- ABC
ABC coverage map | Watch online
While it looks like Ohio State is struggling at 6-4, the Buckeyes are 20-1 at home since the start of the 2002 season.
• Insider Preview: Will the Wolverines be smelling like roses?

FLORIDA GATORS  at
No. 8 FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES
Tallahassee, Fla.
7:45 p.m. ET -- ESPN
The 1,000th game in Gator history may be Ron Zook's last (Zook hasn't decided if he'll coach the Gators in their bowl game).
• Insider Preview: Which quarterback will avoid mistakes?

No. 9 WISCONSIN BADGERS  at
No. 17 IOWA HAWKEYES
Iowa City, Iowa
4:30 p.m. ET -- ESPN
The Badgers still have Big Ten title dreams. A Michigan loss means Wisconsin is Rose Bowl-bound if it beats Iowa.
• Insider breakdown: Can the Badgers rebound from last week?

No. 11 LOUISVILLE CARDINALS  at
HOUSTON COUGARS
Houston
3 p.m. ET --ESPN Plus
Watch online
Louisville is ninth nationally in passing offense while Houston is a surprising 20th in passing defense. Could the Cougs slow the Cards down?
• Insider breakdown: Will Louisville's offense continue to roll?

LOUISIANA TECH BULLDOGS  at
No. 12 BOISE STATE BRONCOS
Boise, Idaho
3 p.m. ET -- ESPN Plus
Watch online
Boise State has the nation's longest winning streak at 20 games, but the Broncos' last loss came to -- wait for it -- Louisiana Tech.
• Insider breakdown: Can the Bulldogs strike again?

WAKE FOREST DEMON DEACONS  at
No. 13 MIAMI HURRICANES
Miami
Noon ET -- ESPN
Upset alert? The Demon Deacons lost four games in the final minutes and have been tied or leading in the fourth quarter of every game this year.
• Insider breakdown: Can Wake Forest pull off the upset?

MISSISSIPPI REBELS  at
No. 14 LSU TIGERS
Baton Rouge, La.
8 p.m. ET
Watch online
Ole Miss has just 34 points in its last three games. That's not good since it plays an LSU defense ranked third nationally.
• Insider breakdown: Will LSU's winning ways continue?

No. 16 TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS  at
VANDERBILT COMMODORES
Nashville, Tenn.
12:30 p.m. ET -- Jefferson Pilot
Watch online
Not saying this annual game is one-sided, but Vanderbilt hasn't beaten Tennessee since 1982 and hasn't scored a point vs. the Vols since 2000.
• Insider breakdown: Will the Vols offense get on track?

No. 18 VIRGINIA CAVALIERS  at
GEORGIA TECH YELLOW JACKETS
Atlanta
1 p.m. ET -- ABC
ABC coverage map | Watch online
Cavaliers looking for first win in Atlanta since 1994, also the last time a road team won in this series.
• Insider breakdown: Can the Jackets pull off the upset?

No. 19 BOSTON COLLEGE EAGLES  at
TEMPLE OWLS
Philadelphia
Noon, ET -- ESPN Plus
Watch online
Walter Washington and Temple will find the going tough against BC's fifth-ranked scoring defense (13.2 ppg).
• Insider breakdown: Can the Eagles avoid a letdown?

SMU MUSTANGS  at
No. 25 UTEP MINERS
El Paso, Texas
5 p.m. ET
UTEP is a perfect 19-for-19 (16 TDs, 3 FGs) in the red zone over its last five games. Not good for SMU's 112th-ranked defense.
• Insider breakdown: Will the Mustangs slow down UTEP?