Saturday, October 4, 2003

Today's Top 25 games



No. 1 Oklahoma (4-0) at Iowa State (2-2)

Time/TV: 7 p.m./TBS.

Line: Oklahoma by 21.

Points: The Sooners insist they aren't looking ahead to Texas next week. OU QB Jason White should generate big yardage against a defense that probably will be without its physical and spiritual leader, DT Jordan Carstens (knee).

No. 4 Virginia Tech (4-0) at Rutgers (3-1)

Time: Noon.

Line: Tech by 26 1/2.

Points: The Scarlet Knights already have equaled their win total in the last two years, but the Hokies represent a huge step up in competition.

No. 7 Tennessee (4-0) at Auburn (2-2)

Time/TV: 7:45 p.m./ESPN.

Line: Auburn by 1.

Points: Auburn QB Jason Campbell will have to provide leadership as he directs an offense that didn't reach the end zone in its first two games. Though RB Cedric Houston is the Vols' primary engine, QB Casey Clausen could come out firing to keep Auburn LBs Dontarrious Thomas and Karlos Dansby off the line of scrimmage.

Troy State (3-2) at No. 8 Nebraska (4-0)

Time: 1:30 p.m.

Line: Nebraska by 27 1/2.

Points: Cornhuskers wrap up their nonconference slate. Troy State enters with a three-game winning streak after toppling Marshall.

No. 10 Southern Cal (3-1) at Arizona State (2-2)

Time: 3:30 p.m.

Line: USC by 11 1/2.

Points: Sun Devils QB Andrew Walter has been inconsistent with no go-to target emerging. The USC offense, heavily dependent on WR Mike Williams, must diversify.

No. 11 Michigan (4-1) at No. 19 Iowa (4-1)

Time/TV: 3:30 p.m./Ch. 9, 2.

Line: Michigan by 3.

Points: Don't think the Wolverines have forgotten the 34-9 pounding Iowa administered last year at the "Big House." Michigan QB John Navarre might try to get WRs Braylon Edwards and Steve Breaston involved.

Alabama (2-3) at No. 12 Georgia (3-1)

Time/TV: 3:30 p.m./Ch. 12, 7.

Line: Georgia by 12.

Points: Georgia QB David Greene will play with a knee brace and could have limited mobility. Alabama LB DeMeco Ryans, coming off a 25-tackle game against Arkansas, might need to take up the slack if fellow LB Derrick Pope (ankle) can't go.

No. 14 Kansas State (4-1) at No. 13 Texas (3-1)

Time: 3:30 p.m.

Line: Texas by 6.

Points: The long-awaited return of dynamic QB Ell Roberson gives K-State an emotional edge, but it remains to be seen if his non-throwing hand can take punishment. Speedy Longhorns LB Derrick Johnson will try to match footwork with Roberson.

Arizona (1-4) at No. 15 Washington State (4-1)

Time: 5 p.m.

Line: Washington State by 29.

Points: Interim Wildcats coach Mike Hankwitz tries to bring order to chaos. Red-hot Cougars won't be sympathetic.

No. 16 Minnesota (5-0) at Northwestern (2-3)

Time: Noon.

Line: Minnesota by 11 1/2.

Points: Gophers seek 2-0 start in Big Ten before Michigan comes calling Friday. Wildcats face unbeaten conference foe for second consecutive week.

No. 17 Washington (3-1) at UCLA (2-2)

Time/TV: 6:30 p.m./FSN.

Line: Washington by 1.

Points: Huskies RB Rich Alexis could get rolling immediately. UCLA DT Rodney Leisle must sit out the first half because of his fourth-quarter ejection for fighting in the San Diego State game. Washington WR Reggie Williams and Bruins CB Matt Ware should provide an entertaining matchup.

Ohio (1-3) at No. 20 Northern Illinois (4-0)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Line: NIU by 21 1/2.

Points: Huskies embark on quest for Mid-American Conference title.

Army (0-4) at No. 21 TCU (4-0)

Time: 7 p.m.

Line: TCU by 30 1/2.

Points: Horned Frogs, who narrowly escaped Arizona, should be more focused against Black Knights.

Illinois (1-4) at No. 23 Purdue (3-1)

Time/TV: 4:30 p.m./ESPN.

Line: Purdue by 14.

Points: If Illini RB Ibrahim Halsey can't find room early, QB Jon Beutjer will face a rush from Purdue DT Craig Terrill. Safety Stuart Schweigert will be ready to pounce on any mistimed throws. Boilermakers QB Kyle Orton has nine TD passes on the year to five different receivers with only one interception.

Mississippi (2-2) at No. 24 Florida (3-2)

Time/TV: 12:30 p.m./Ch. 25.

Line: Florida by 12 1/2.

Points: Florida QB Chris Leak hopes Rebels' pass defense, torched for 661 yards by Texas Tech, is as generous this week. Eli Manning and Ole Miss offense must improve red-zone efficiency.

No. 25 Air Force (5-0) vs. Navy (2-2)

Time: 1:30 p.m.

Line: Air Force by 14 1/2.

Points: Falcons look to maintain stranglehold in Commander-In-Chief's Trophy series. Navy and Air Force are first and second, respectively, in national rushing rankings.

Rest of Top 25

No. 2 Miami beat West Virginia Thursday. No. 3 Ohio State, No. 5 Florida State, No. 6 LSU, No. 9 Arkansas and No. 18 Pittsburgh are idle.




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Prep sports schedules

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