Week 3 of the college football season is here and there are still a lot of unknowns regarding the top teams in the nation. However, Week 3 is typically the turning point in the season for many teams.
Some schools have challenged themselves early in the year, some have survived scares from lesser opponents, and others have played only cupcakes in preparation for the tougher opponents to follow.
One thing is for certain. There are a lot of intriguing matchups in Week 3, and we should start to see the transformation of the best teams in the country take place after it's over.
It's the biggest game of the year so far, and it's likely going to carry more than a high TV rating. Oklahoma got the best of Florida State last year, and Oklahoma returns a lot of key players from last year's victory.
Florida State is said to be a better team than they were last year. However, it's hard to tell considering who the Seminoles have played thus far.
A national championship appearance weighs heavily on this game for both teams, and both quarterbacks also have a shot at the Heisman. Both races start in Week 3.
Another interesting storyline for this one: Florida State trying to earn back some respect for the ACC.
The third-ranked Tigers will go on the road to face the Mississippi State Bulldogs who are coming off their somewhat surprising loss to Auburn.
Maybe Auburn was looking ahead to the Bulldogs when they survived a scare against Utah State or maybe the Bulldogs were overrated in the preseason poll.
It's hard to tell, but a strong performance against an LSU team that already has a victory of Oregon this season would put the Bulldogs back on track.
Jarrett Lee will likely need to play better against the Bulldogs than he did against Oregon if LSU is going to win.
This is an interesting matchup between the SEC and ACC. People forget that Clemson was a dropped pass in the end zone away last season from ending Auburn's national title run. Cam Newton and Auburn went on to win the game in overtime.
This year, Auburn is obviously a completely different team, and Clemson has a new quarterback running the show in Tajh Boyd.
Auburn has some momentum heading in to this one after beating Mississippi State last week, and Clemson survived a scare against FCS opponent Wofford in Week 2.
Maybe Clemson pulled an Auburn (see Week 1 against Utah State) or maybe Clemson just isn't very good. Either way, it's a big game for both teams moving forward.
If you like a lot of passing, then you may want to tune in to the game being played in College Park. Danny O'Brien is hands down the best passing quarterback in the ACC, and he's got the Terrapins off to a great start under new head coach Randy Edsall.
Jarrett Lee and West Virginia can also throw the ball around the grid iron and will look to surprise the Terrapins at home. Currently, the ACC (5th) ranks ahead of the Big East (6th) as far as top BCS conferences. However, it's nothing either conference would want to put on their resume.
Maryland is likely Florida State's biggest competition in the ACC's Atlantic Division and should beat West Virginia on Saturday. Maryland is often overlooked in the ACC, but they could be the sleeper everyone forgot about.
When the two schools scheduled this matchup a few years back, they must have pictured it going a different way. Both found themselves in trouble with the NCAA this offseason, and both have had to deal with suspensions, coaching changes and quarterback shifts.
Miami head coach Al Golden is benching sophomore quarterback Stephen Morris in favor of senior Jacory Harris, who Golden said won the quarterback battle in the preseason. Harris was suspended for the first game due to being involved with former Miami booster Nevin Shapiro.
Ohio State is coming off a scare against Toledo, but do have a few players returning from suspension. One thing Miami has going for them is an extra week to prepare. However, Morris looked pretty good against Maryland until he pulled a Tony Romo late in the fourth quarter by throwing an interception that was returned for a touchdown.
If Miami starts playing musical chairs with the QB position, Ohio State will roll.
This will be the third time Washington and Nebraska have faced off since the start of last season. This is the first time Washington will be without Jake Locker against the Cornhuskers.
Nebraska is coming off a victory against Fresno State who provided the Cornhuskers with a scare in Week 2. Nebraska's biggest problem is Taylor Martinez's consistency. He is a phenomenal athlete who happens to play the quarterback position.
When Martinez is put in a "must-throw" situation, Nebraska is put at a disadvantage. He's one heck of a runner, and Nebraska is a very good team overall. However, the inconsistency through the air is going to cost them a victory at some point this season.
Nebraska should beat Washington on Saturday, but it may be closer than what you expect.
Notre Dame is 0-2, but should be 2-0. So why haven't they been able to break through? It's very simple; turnovers. Not just a few, but 10 turnovers in the first two weeks.
Essentially, the Irish are trying to prove that they're a good football team, but really that's all they've got to play for at this point if you're a die-hard Notre Dame fan.
Why is that?
That's because Notre Dame fans have false expectations. They're kind of like fans of a perennial loser who always thinks that this year is going to be the year they break through.
However, it won't be this year for Notre Dame. They don't like look a bad football team until you see them give the ball away to the other team like they're a charity. It's inexcusable really, and a tough pill to swallow for such a prestigious program.
We'll know for a fact on Saturday night once the final second ticks off the clock, but right now the edge has to go to Landry Jones. The Sooners look like they're built to go all the way, and they've got an experienced team that's proven they know how to win.
E.J. Manuel is a dark-horse candidate for the Heisman who will be thrown near the top of the list if the Seminoles win and he plays well. The Seminoles have to prove they can win the big game, and until they do, advantage Oklahoma.
Tennessee is 2-0 and coming off an impressive victory against a solid Cincinnati team. The Volunteers currently rank ninth in the country in passing, but have had a difficult time running the ball so far.
Florida has played Florida Atlantic and UAB this year, and still only rank 48th in passing offense. Switching from a spread to a pro-style offense hasn't been the easiest transition for the Gators, but it certainly hasn't been a struggle.
Chris Rainey is a big part of the Florida offense, so if he can get going against the Volunteers, Florida should be okay.
However, look for Tennessee's defense to win the battle against the pass and to put the pressure on Florida. This game is in the swamp, but look for Tennessee to pull the upset.
Right now, Harris is in and Morris is out. Golden may try to play both quarterbacks against Ohio State, but that's too big a matchup to be playing games with your quarterback rotation.
Morris played well against Maryland, but Golden must have really liked what he saw out of Harris to pull the plug on the young quarterback.
However, if Harris struggles, don't be surprised to see him benched in favor of Morris.
No, probably not. Ohio State is going through a rough stretch right now, and currently have a 25-year-old quarterback running the show.
Joe Bauserman is not Kellen Moore. Moore will likely have another 300-plus passing game against Toledo, and Boise State will do what they do best, and that's win.
The good news for Mark Richt and Georgia is that they play Coastal Carolina. The bad news is that they have to make sure they dominate every facet of this game.
After starting 0-2 for the first time since 1996, everyone's going to be watching every move Richt makes. Unless Georgia drastically turns around their season, there's likely going to be a new head coach in town next season.
That being said, there's no chance Georgia loses this game.
Virginia is a very young team that's inexperienced and still growing. North Carolina has more experience and a solid quarterback in Bryn Renner.
North Carolina almost lost to Rutgers last week and Virginia won a close game against Indiana. It's unlikely that either team will make much noise in the ACC this season, but if you had to choose between the two, you'd likely say North Carolina has a greater chance of making noise.
That being said, this is a big rivalry game and should be entertaining for a few quarters.
Texas pulled one out late against BYU last week and are off to a 2-0 start. They still don't look like a very good football team, though. Offensively, they're in trouble because they have no quarterback who has taken control of the starting job.
Rick Neuheisel has UCLA off to a 1-1 start, and they'll look to beat their future conference foe, I mean... Texas in Pasadena on Saturday.
The quarterback situation is going to catch Texas eventually, and look for it to happen on the road this week.
Colorado almost surprised a lot of people last week with their performance against California. Technically, that was not a Pac-12 game because it was a matchup that was previously scheduled before Colorado joined the conference.
The Buffaloes are a better team than Colorado State, but neither is a juggernaut. This game could go either way, but look for Colorado to come out on top in the end.
Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas is a much better runner than he is a passer. That's a fact. Currently, Thomas is completing 43.9 percent of his passes. He's coming off an 8-for-20 performance against East Carolina, throwing for 91 yards and an interception.
Thomas looks like a young, inexperienced quarterback. There's no doubting that. But if the Hokies want to get back to the ACC Championship game and maybe make a national title appearance, Thomas is going to have to step up his game drastically.
This offense can only rely on the running game and defense so much. They have to get their young QB moving, and the next two weeks is the time to do it with games against Arkansas State and Marshall.
David Wilson was quoted saying that he was unhappy with his 20-plus carry, 138-yard performance against East Carolina. He did have a fumble in the game and no touchdowns, but Josh Oglesby took the touchdowns away when the Hokies reached the red zone and Wilson needed a breather.
Wilson expects a lot from himself, and said he wants the 138 yards to be his season low. That would be remarkable, and could you say Heisman-like.
If the Hokies go undefeated, it will be on the back of Wilson. If he can keep up his rapid pace, and keep the Hokies in national title contention, he will find himself in the Heisman talk by season's end.
Oregon put up 69 on Nevada last week and they host Missouri State in Week 3. That means terrible things for the Missouri State defense. Nevada is not a bad football team, but Oregon's offense is elite.
Look for the Ducks to score at least 70 this week, but how many more do you think they can get?
Iowa is coming off a tough triple overtime loss against in-state rival Iowa State. Pittsburgh has a solid team, and definitely have the ability to knock off the Hawkeyes.
Kirk Ferentz will need to have his team ready to go in order to rebound from last week's heart-breaking defeat.
Thanks to five Notre Dame turnovers, Michigan had multiple chances to comeback against the Irish and they did. After one of the craziest last two minutes you'll ever see, Michigan earned their second win of the season.
The Wolverines are 2-0 under Brady Hoke, and Denard Robinson will look to keep it going. Robinson has looked limited in this offense at times, but when the coaches open up the playbook, Robinson is at his best.
That should happen in Week 3 when Michigan hosts Eastern Michigan, but how the coaching staff handles the playcalling for the remainder of the season remains a mystery.
Texas A&M has provided a lot of off-the-field entertainment and talk to say the least. The Big 12 is folding at the seams, and the SEC looks to be adding yet another strong team to their already elite conference.
Oklahoma seems to be the team everyone's waiting on, and it sounds like they'd like to move to the Pac-12. The soap opera is sure to continue, and by this time next week, we may have a clearer picture of what to expect.
Boston College and Duke are set to face off this week, and neither team has had much to write home about so far this week.
The Eagles are off to a very slow start, and Duke started their year with a loss to FCS opponent Richmond.
Boston College is the better football team of the two, but neither is moving in the right direction.
Andrew Luck continues to put up big numbers, and he'll look to continue that against Arizona in Week 3. Stanford definitely has a shot at a national title appearance, and how the team performs around Luck will be the biggest factor.
For now, Stanford should roll through Week 3 against an Arizona team that's coming off an embarrassing loss to Oklahoma State.
Wisconsin looks like the best team in the Big Ten at this point in the season, and Russell Wilson looks like the conferences best player.
Northern Illinois and South Dakota are the Badgers' next two opponents before hosting Nebraska who is likely their biggest threat in the Big Ten. Wilson will likely continue putting up huge numbers the next couple of weeks as Wisconsin heads into conference play.
The Commodores are off to a 2-0 start after defeating Elon and Conneticuit in the first two weeks. However, their offensive ranking is less than impressive. Vanderbilt ranks 101st in passing and 86th in rushing through the first two weeks, and have a tough matchup against Ole Miss in Week 3.
How Vanderbilt performs against a solid conference opponent will give us a good idea of what to expect from the Commodores for the remainder of the season.