As teams are fighting for an identity and preparing for conference play, quality non-conference games go a long way toward rankings, seedings and whether the bubble will lift a team up or burst, killing its dreams.
This weekend presents a few very good matchups and, as if it were a gift from the basketball gods, they are all on Saturday, so no one has to chose between the NFL and college basketball.
As a general rule, early season rankings don't necessarily tell the tale of how good or bad a team will be. (The real indicator is the Vegas line, but you'll have to wait until tomorrow for that column.) This Saturday's games should create some separation from the haves and have-nots.
Here's the slate.