Top 25 college football: Which teams to watch Saturday

A number of ranked teams face off against one another this weekend.

Dave Martin/AP/File
In this Sept. 28, 2013, file photo, Alabama head coach Nick Saban leads his team onto the field prior to an NCAA college football game against Mississippi in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Six weeks into the college football season, we have a weekend where several teams ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 will square off on the gridiron.

Let's start with the third-ranked University of Alabama going up against No. 11 Mississippi at Oxford, Mississippi. The Crimson Tide is undefeated at 4-0. The Rebels are 4-0 for the first time since a guy named Manning was their quarterback – Archie, Peyton and Eli's dad – way back in 1970.

The Alabama-Mississippi game will be televised at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time on CBS.

Fourth-ranked Oklahoma is also on the road Saturday at Fort Worth, Texas, where they will tangle with 3-0 Texas Christian, ranked 25th. Horned Frogs head coach Gary Patterson praised the defensive unit of the undefeated Sooners earlier this week.

“They are a historical program and they are a very good program,” Patterson told Soonersports.com. “They are very talented on both sides of the ball and this is the best defense I have seen from them in 10 years or when Mike (Stoops) left.”

You can see OU-TCU at 3:30 p.m. Eastern on Fox.

No. 5 Auburn will get a Southeastern Conference test from 15th-ranked LSU. The LSU Tigers have won the last three meetings in this series, but a young LSU squad already has one loss this year. Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall once again leads a potent offense, averaging 42 points per game in four wins so far this season.

Auburn-LSU kicks off at 7 p.m. Eastern on ESPN.

Another team from Mississippi is ranked and facing a Top 10 team. No. 12 Mississippi State will host sixth-ranked Texas A&M in Starkville, beginning at noon Eastern on ESPN. The Bulldogs are undefeated at 4-0 – the last two wins on the road, including last Saturday's win at LSU.

Texas A&M was on the ropes last Saturday to Arkansas, down 28-14. But they scored twice in the fourth quarter to tie the game, then won it in overtime to improve to 5-0.

What's a college football weekend without Notre Dame? The ninth-ranked Fighting Irish (4-0) takes on No. 14 Stanford at South Bend, Indiana. The Cardinal is coming off a road win last week at Washington while Notre Dame, despite five turnovers, beat Syracuse.

Stanford (3-1) is currently first in the Football Bowl Subdivision in scoring defense at 6.5 points per game, while Notre Dame is fourth at 11.5 points per game.

Notre Dame-Stanford will be televised on NBC, beginning at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time.

Finally, there's a Big-Ten heavyweight bout Saturday night in East Lansing, Michigan. Tenth-ranked Michigan State hosts No. 19 Nebraska. The Spartans have three home wins against one loss at Oregon. The Cornhuskers are 5-0 and looking to go 6-0 for the first time since 2001. Nebraska hasn't beaten a Top 10 team on the road since defeating Washington back in 1997.

Michigan State-Nebraska will be broadcast on ABC, beginning at 8 p.m. Eastern.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.