College Football

College Football Week 9 Schedule: Top Matchups on Saturday's Slate

COLUMBIA, SC - SEPTEMBER 14:  Jadeveon Clowney #7 of the South Carolina Gamecocks during their game at Williams-Brice Stadium on September 14, 2013 in Columbia, South Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Andrew GouldFeatured ColumnistOctober 22, 2013

The once-static college football rankings are now beginning to shift with regularity.

This week's AP Top 25 changed dramatically after a handful of Week 8 upsets. Clemson, Texas A&M and South Carolina fell while Florida State, Missouri, Stanford and Texas Tech spring-boarded up the ladder.

With prestigious schools clashing this weekend, the list could shake up some more after Saturday. The latest "risers" must prove they're for real while the "fallers" will look to bounce back and reclaim what was once their's.

Here's a look at some of the top showdowns to watch this week in college football. 

College Football Week 9 Schedule for AP Top 25 Teams
DateTime (ET)AwayHome
Sat. 10/2612:00 p.m.No. 19 Oklahoma StateIowa State
Sat. 10/2612:00 p.m.No. 20 LouisvilleSouth Florida
Sat. 10/2612:00 p.m.ConnecticutNo. 23 UCF
Sat. 10/2612:00 p.m.No. 24 NebraskaMinnesota
Sat. 10/2612:21 p.m.VanderbiltNo. 16 Texas A&M
Sat. 10/263:30 p.m.TennesseeNo. 1 Alabama
Sat. 10/263:30 p.m.North Carolina StateNo. 2 Florida State
Sat. 10/263:30 p.m.No. 9 ClemsonMaryland
Sat. 10/263:30 p.m.No. 10 Texas TechNo. 15 Oklahoma
Sat. 10/263:30 p.m.DukeNo. 14 Virginia Tech
Sat. 10/263:30 p.m.Eastern IllinoisNo. 18 Northern Illinois
Sat. 10/267:00 p.m.No. 12 UCLANo. 3 Oregon
Sat. 10/267:00 p.m.No. 21 South CarolinaNo. 5 Missouri
Sat. 10/267:00 p.m.No. 8 BaylorKansas
Sat. 10/267:00 p.m.FurmanNo. 13 LSU
Sat. 10/267:30 p.m.Florida AtlanticNo. 11 Auburn
Sat. 10/268:00 p.m.Penn StateOhio State
Sat. 10/2610:30 p.m.No. 6 StanfordNo. 25 Oregon State
Sat. 10/2610:30 p.m.No. 17 Fresno StateSan Diego State
ESPN.com

 

No. 12 UCLA at No. 3 Oregon

/Getty Images

Through little fault of its own, Oregon dropped a spot to No. 3 despite lighting up the scoreboard yet again last Saturday.

While the Ducks allowed 38 points to Washington State, that wasn't too bad, as the Oregon offense offered 62 points. The Ducks rank 12th in the FBS in points allowed on defense, averaging 17.3 points per game, but voters are likely worried that their defense is unraveling against tougher opponents.

Considering Oregon's slimmest victory this season came by 21 points, there's little more Marcus Mariota can do to prove the squad belongs in the BCS title game. Maybe if the offense breaks 100? 

This is Oregon's chance to prove it belongs on top with a statement victory of its own against No. 12 UCLA, who is still a respectable adversary despite falling to Stanford. A win against its Pac-12 foe would provide the Ducks with a signature victory to challenge Florida State's claim on its newly earned spot at No. 2.

Brett Hundley, however, could make this match a shootout, which would help Oregon claim an emphatic victory.

 

No. 21 South Carolina at No. 5 Missouri

Faced with fierce SEC opponents, Missouri has run the table with decisive wins over Georgia and Florida in back-to-back weeks. One more ranked conference foe awaits the Tigers in South Carolina.

Last Saturday, Missouri showed how scary it can look with a solid passing attack to match its superb ground game. While Maty Mauk hardly blew anyone away in his first start, he threw for 295 yards to complement Missouri's 205 rushing yards.

Missouri is now 7-0 with a 22.2-point average margin of victory, which earns the squad a spot in the AP's Top Five. Can the Tigers climb even higher with another conference triumph?

South Carolina entered the season as one of the SEC East's top threats, but a 23-21 loss to Tennessee sent the Gamecocks plummeting in the polls. One more loss could kick the Volunteers out of the Top 25 entirely.

Jadeveon Clowney dusted off the cobwebs against Tennessee in a losing effort. The Gamecocks need a demonstrative performance from their star defensive lineman to combat one of the nation's strongest rushing attacks.

 

No. 10 Texas Tech at No. 15 Oklahoma

Texas Tech jumps up the rankings each week, but this week, the 7-0 Red Raiders face their toughest challenge yet in the Oklahoma Sooners.

Although Oklahoma has only won its last two games by a combined 17 points, freshman quarterback Davis Webb has dazzled enough under center to propel it all the way into the Top 10. Webb has 877 passing yards and five touchdowns over the past two games, putting him in historic territory, according to the Big-12's official Twitter page.

But Oklahoma has surrendered just 17.1 points per game, only allowing Kansas' Jake Heaps 16 yards passing last weekend. Webb must travel into hostile territory and fend off the Sooners' stout secondary on the road to solidify Texas Tech's high placement in the AP poll.

Oklahoma quarterback Blake Bell also started off strong with a 413-yard outing, but he has not broken the 200-passing-yard plateau in his past three games. If the junior can't muster a better game, his freshman foe could outclass him. 

 

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