Every BCS Conference's Game of the Year in 2013
If you could only pick one college football game from each conference to watch this season, which would it be?
Oh, decisions, decisions.
There are rivalries, rematches, potential classics, storylines galore and way too much college football to pick just one game that always seems to end too quickly. But as crazy as it may sound, there is always one game that towers over the rest, one game that every college football fan has circled on his or her calendar and can't wait for.
This year's conference games that are must-see television are rematches of some of the best games from last season.
Note: Each game that is picked is based on the importance of the matchup. Two teams that are fighting for a conference title should be considered a bigger game than possibly two exciting teams that are out of the championship race.
American Athletic Conference
The Best Game: Louisville at Cincinnati
When: Dec. 5, 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: Nippert Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio
The name of the conference may have changed, but the contenders remain the same. Cincinnati and Louisville have represented the Big East (now the American Athletic Conference) quite well for the last seven years.
It's no secret the Cardinals are the overwhelming favorites to run through this conference, but Cincinnati is certainly no slouch. The Bearcats won 10 games last season and return 14 starters, including a starting quarterback, the entire offensive line and four starters from the defensive front seven.
Last year's meeting was decided by three points (a 34-31 Louisville win in overtime), and a similar result could be in store in the last week of the regular season.
Honorable Mention: Rutgers at Louisville (Oct. 10)
The Best Game: Florida State at Clemson
When: Oct. 19, TBA
Where: Memorial Stadium, Clemson, S.C.
It would be difficult to find two other national championship contenders in the ACC besides Florida State and Clemson. Both return more than enough talent to reach a BCS bowl, and they should be considered dark horses to compete for a crystal football.
Clemson has an offense that's able to score at the drop of a hat, while Florida State has a scary defensive front that is young and athletic. The Seminoles also have a potential superstar quarterback in Jameis Winston, who will be a treat to watch take over a young offense.
The last three meetings between these two teams have been decided by less than two touchdowns. The winner of this contest should be the favorites to win the ACC and could accomplish something much greater with a little luck.
Honorable Mention: Miami at Florida State (Nov. 2)
The Best Game: Oklahoma State at Texas
When: Nov. 16, TBA
Where: Darrell K. Royal—TX Mem. Stadium, Austin, Texas
Honestly, nearly the entire Big 12 schedule will be huge. The conference is so wide open that a game between Kansas and Iowa State may actually hold weight. OK, maybe that's a stretch, but there are a handful of teams that could realistically win this conference.
Regardless of which team makes it out, Oklahoma State and Texas have the most depth of any other squad. Texas returns 19 starters and is hoping to regain its glory this season, while Oklahoma State has 14 starters returning, including seven on an offense that averaged 547 yards.
Texas won last year's meeting 41-36 in a game that produced 10 touchdowns. With the possibility of this year's game featuring similar fireworks, this is the Big 12 game everybody should watch.
Honorable Mention: Oklahoma vs. Texas, Cotton Bowl, Dallas (Oct. 12)
The Best Game: Ohio State at Michigan
When: Nov. 30, TBA
Where: Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, Mich.
Maybe you expected Iowa and Minnesota?
Besides the obvious that this is one of the biggest and most heated rivalries in all of sports, Michigan and Ohio State are the two top teams in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes are getting a lot more love than the Wolverines, but that would change if Michigan has a solid record when the annual rivalry takes place.
Nebraska, Wisconsin and even Northwestern will all have something to say when crowning a Big Ten champion, but it would be considered an upset if Ohio State or Michigan doesn't bring home the hardware.
The last two games between these two were decided by less than a touchdown, and you can expect that trend to continue this season.
Honorable Mention: Wisconsin at Ohio State (Sept. 28)
The Best Game: Alabama at Texas A&M
When: Sept. 14, 3:30 p.m. ET
Where: Kyle Field, College Station, Texas
The second Texas A&M walked off the field at Bryant-Denny Stadium with a victory, this year's rematch became the biggest SEC matchup of the season. In fact, this could end up being the most crucial game in the country, presuming, of course, that Heisman winner Johnny Manziel is eligible to play.
Not only will the winner enter the driver's seat to win the SEC, but the game also plays a big role in who wins the national championship. Judging by recent history, the winner of this game might as well be given the crystal football immediately.
Nick Saban has revenge on his mind and returns the deepest roster in college football, while Manziel likely couldn't care less. The magnitude of a regular-season game doesn't get any bigger than this one.
Forget the conference, every college football fan will have interest in this game.
Honorable Mention: LSU at Alabama (Nov. 9)
The Best Game: Oregon at Stanford
When: Nov. 7, 9 p.m. ET
Where: Stanford Stadium, Stanford, Calif.
The Pac-12 is another conference that's about as wide open as the field goal posts. Some like USC to bounce back, a few people continue to ride the Oregon bandwagon and then there are folks who are picking an underdog such as Arizona State or Washington to win the conference.
It's going to be a madhouse out West!
One thing for is sure: Oregon and Stanford are going to be in the middle of it all.
Stanford continues to prove that a physical defense can actually work in an offensive conference, as it has qualified for three consecutive BCS bowls. Meanwhile, Oregon has played in four straight BCS bowls and will continue to set the bar offensively with eight starters returning.
Last year's meeting was a classic, as Stanford won 17-14 in overtime. It will be another nail-biter when these two well-coached teams clash again.
Honorable Mention: UCLA at Oregon (Oct. 26)