College Football Rankings 2012 Week 4: Teams That Will Bounce Back in a Big Way

Patrick Clarke@@_Pat_ClarkeCorrespondent ISeptember 17, 2012

PALO ALTO, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Matt Barkley #7 of the USC Trojans walks off the field after the Trojans turned the ball over on downs for the last time in the fourth quarter of their loss to the Stanford Cardinal at Stanford Stadium on September 15, 2012 in Palo Alto, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

A handful of Top 25 college football teams suffered gut-wrenching upsets last weekend, but only a pair of those early-season victims will bounce back in a big way in Week 4.

After all, there's no better way to recover from an upset than to take on a cupcake or over-matched conference foe at home in front of your loving fans.

For a couple of former Top 10 programs, some home cooking against weak opposition will be key to rebounding from a nightmarish loss.

Let's take a look at two teams set to bounce back this weekend.

No. 13 USC Trojans

The once BCS National Championship favorite, USC Trojans have come back down to earth after a shocking 21-14 loss at Stanford this past weekend. The upset altered the BCS picture and has the Trojans desperate for a bounce back victory in Week 4.

Don't worry, they'll get a much-needed W this weekend when they host the California Golden Bears. The Bears' only win this season came at home over Southern Utah two weeks ago (in which they allowed 31 points). It will also be Cal's second straight road game. 

It certainly won't be pretty on Saturday afternoon in Los Angeles when a disgruntled USC squad plays host to the unsuspecting team coming off a deflating last-minute loss at No. 16 Ohio State.

No. 21 Michigan State Spartans

Similarly to USC, Michigan State enters its Week 4 showdown with sour emotions after dropping a 20-3 contest at home to No. 11 Notre Dame last weekend. After a week of hearing all of the "Spartans are overrated" talk, Michigan State will finally take the field against Eastern Michigan.

The Eagles are 0-3 on the season and have been outscored by 22 points per game on average this season. What makes that statistic even more pitiful, however, is the fact that Eastern Michigan's losses have come against Ball State, Illinois State and Purdue.

I was slightly hesitant in picking Michigan State to beat Notre Dame last weekend, but, needless to say, I have no doubts about their chances of wreaking complete havoc on the Eagles this weekend in East Lansing.

2012 College Football Rankings - Week 4

Rank Team Record Points
1 Alabama (58) 3-0 1,498
2 LSU (2) 3-0 1,433
3 Oregon 3-0 1,356
4 Florida State 3-0 1,275
5 Georgia 3-0 1,203
6 Oklahoma 2-0 1,181
7 South Carolina 3-0 1,081
8 West Virginia  2-0 1,051
9 Stanford 3-0 1,009
10 Clemson 3-0 899
11 Notre Dame 3-0 854
12 Texas 3-0 816
13 USC 2-1 776
14 Florida 3-0 743
15 Kansas State 3-0 683
16 Ohio State 3-0 680
17 TCU 2-0 535
18 Michigan 2-1 448
19 UCLA 3-0 429
20 Louisville 3-0 366
21 Michigan State 2-1 318
22 Arizona 3-0 296
23 Mississippi State 3-0 106
24 Boise State 1-1 95
25 Nebraska 2-1 80

*All Information Courtesy of

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