How long until college football kicks off? Too long if you ask me. With schools all around the USA continuing to gear up for what promises to be a great 2023 season, the action is set to start with a bang.
With all of the top programs looking to make their presence felt early, September has a plethora of matchups that will make college football odds fanatics go berserk.
Alabama, Georgia, Ohio State, Tennessee Texas, and USC, all CFP championship front-runners will be tested and test opponents. With that said, let’s break down the top 10 games in the first month of college football action.
LSU Tigers vs Florida State Seminoles
Teams who know what it’s like to be top dogs meet on neutral ground in Orlando to kick off the season? Yes, please!
After Brian Kelly arrived at LSU, he managed to transform what could be taken as the worst Tigers team in years into a 10-win squad, putting them back on the relevance map. With their opening game being against a Florida State side that somehow managed to build a team ready for championship heat through the transfer portal mostly, will it be Kelly’s or Mike Norvell’s team that comes out on top?
Colorado Buffaloes vs TCU Horned Frogs
The “Deion Sanders Experience” at Colorado opens with a road trip against last year’s Cinderella Story team, the TCU Horned Frogs.
After Sanders raked up headlines in all the top college football news sites with his arrival at Colorado to take the Buffaloes head coaching gig, “Primetime” has made it a point to keep the spotlight shining bright on him and his squad.
TCU shocked fans last season making it to the CFP title game in a losing effort against Georgia. Now, with more to prove, the Horned Frogs will be looking to make an example out of Sanders’ Buffaloes in a non-conference game.
Don’t be shocked if Sanders’ team falls flat. The Buffs were 1-11 last season and went through a massive transfer portal exodus, mostly in part to “Primetime” and his antics.
Florida Gators vs Utah Utes
The Utah Utes know that the competition in the PAC-12 conference will be a dogfight with USC, Washington, and Oregon all wanting to take the crown. Experts have spoken high praises of the Utes and how coach Kyle Whittingham managed to maintain a strong core of young talent and veteran players both on offense and defense.
So what better way to showcase said work than by getting a strong first win at home against Florida?
The road to another 10-win season and a shot at competing for the Pac-12 title for Utah starts with a win against the Gators. So Utes, get to it.
Texas Longhorns vs Alabama Crimson Tide
Steve Sarkisian vs Nick Saban in Tuscaloosa, need I say more? The Texas Longhorns and Alabama Crimson Tide will stage what promises to be a thriller.
Sarkisian, a former Alabama OC, knows that one of the main goals for any head coach who once worked under Saban is to beat the college football coaching demigod. While in recent seasons the Longhorns haven’t been the dominant squad they once were, in 2023, they will look to finally get some respect again.
So how do you do that? By beating the nation’s most successful college football team in their home. Will they do it? It’s hard to tell, but if they do, get ready to put a ton of credit on this Texas team for 2023.
Stanford Cardinal vs USC Trojans
USC QB Caleb Williams, last year’s Heisman Trophy winner and this year’s favorite to repeat said victory wants to top off his college football career with a trip to the CFP. In the third game of USC’s schedule, and the first true test of the season for Lincoln Riley’s team, the Trojans match up against Pac-12 rival Stanford seems like too good of a game to not keep an eye on.
CALEB WILLIAMS IS THE 2022 HEISMAN TROPHY WINNER 🏆
🎵 Connor Price & Bens – Spinnin pic.twitter.com/wU8SGaIg10
— ESPN (@espn) December 11, 2022
Williams looks like a shoo-in for top pick in next year’s NFL draft. Against a team that’s coming off one of its worst seasons, like the Cardinal, this should be fun.
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South Carolina Gamecocks vs Georgia Bulldogs
Everybody please make room for the back-to-back CFP champions Georgia Bulldogs. After their first two games of the season against UT Martin and Ball State, Kirby Smart’s team will be on the lookout to score its first statement win of this campaign against Spencer Rattler and the South Carolina Gamecocks.
In an SEC East showdown at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Georgia, a win for either team here could set the tone for the race for the SEC title. With Georgia wanting to go for the three-peat, will the Gamecocks prove to be its first roadblock?
GO DAWGS! Georgia Bulldogs are your 2022 CFP National Champions! pic.twitter.com/BPrmi5Z4sM
— wtoc11 (@WTOC11) January 11, 2022
Tennessee Volunteers vs Florida Gators
After a season that saw Tennessee put on some of its best performances in years, the Vols want to prove that 2022 was not a fluke. To do so, scoring strong divisional wins are a must, especially at home. Enter Florida.
The Gators could be the perfect prey for a Vols squad wanting to put the SEC on notice. If high-octane action is what you want, this matchup might just do the trick.
Ohio State Buckeyes vs Notre Dame Fighting Irish
While Ohio State has been a constant in the CFP championship race for years, Notre Dame, one of college football’s most important programs, has seen better days.
Yes, the Fighting Irish are always there, but if they want to make it back to the playoffs, what better way than to deliver a message than by beating Ryan Day’s Buckeyes?
If both teams bring their A-game, we could be talking about a game-of-the-year candidate here.
Ole Miss Rebels vs Alabama Crimson Tide
What is it about these Ole Miss vs Alabama games that always manage to be must-watch events? Even with the Crimson Tide holding a dominant grip on the rivalry record, you know the Rebels are always good to give Saban’s team a run.
Imagine if we get another version of that Oct 10, 2020, game where ‘Bama beat Ole Miss 63-48. Who would want to miss the chance of witnessing that again?
Florida State vs Clemson
Finishing off with an ACC rivalry game that pits the conference’s strongest teams. The Seminoles’ visit to Memorial Stadium to face the Tigers could be a preview of the conference title game.
You know what, I’ll go as far as to say this. Whoever wins this game, will end up being ACC Champion. Remember that.