[1] Southern California at

[14] Arizona State

3:30, pay-per-view

By tomorrow, USC hopes it is not mentioned in the same breath as 1996 Nebraska. Nine years ago, two-time defending champion Nebraska's 26-game winning streak ended at Arizona State, 19-0. The similarities to today's USC-ASU game are eerie. The Trojans, of course, are back-to-back national champs riding a 25-game win streak. Just as Nebraska had done, USC blasted Arizona State the previous season. Strange things can happen in Tempe, Ariz. The quarterback matchup is superb, as USC's Matt Leinart (10 touchdown passes) faces ASU's Sam Keller (16 touchdown passes). The Trojans' secondary will be repeatedly tested, and safety Darnell Bing will be a key player throughout.

[5] Florida at [15] Alabama

3:30, WUSA-9, WJZ-13

Watch Florida wide receiver Chad Jackson, a Hoover, Ala., native, who is returning to his home state after spurning the Crimson Tide when he signed with the Gators. Jackson has six touchdowns and is fast becoming one of the premier wide receivers in the country. Jackson promises to be particularly important because fellow wide receiver Andre Caldwell is out for the year because of a broken leg. Chris Leak has yet to throw an interception for the Gators, and Coach Urban Meyer's spread-option offense continues to improve. Alabama must pressure Leak with linebackers DeMeco Ryans and Freddie Roach. Alabama last started 5-0 in 1996 under Gene Stallings.

[13] Notre Dame at [22] Purdue

7:45, ESPN

Brady Quinn's mouth might be watering right now. The Fighting Irish quarterback is getting ready to face a Purdue defense that ranks 113th out of 117 teams in pass defense. Quinn has vastly improved this season under Charlie Weis, having thrown 10 touchdown passes and only two interceptions. Purdue's run defense was the best in the country until Minnesota's Laurence Maroney ran all over it last week. The Boilermakers will be tested again when Quinn hands the ball to back Darius Walker, who last week became the first Notre Dame running back to start a season with four games of 100-plus rushing yards.

[18] Minnesota at Penn State

3:30, pay-per-view

With a victory, Penn State likely would return to the top 25 for the first time since 2002. Coach Joe Paterno says his team is better, though not yet great. We should believe him. Penn State is tied for the most turnovers (13) in Division I-A. And the Nittany Lions have not faced anyone of consequence. That changes today, when Heisman hopeful Maroney, who leads the nation with 174.5 rushing yards per game, arrives in Happy Valley. Minnesota has a stout offensive line; Penn State has a senior-laden defense that is one of the best against the run. Only one of these teams will be ranked next week.

Michigan at [11] Michigan State

Noon, WJLA-7, WMAR-2

Could Michigan really start out 2-3? This is unfamiliar territory for Coach Lloyd Carr's team, which is unranked for the first time this century. Seniors called a players-only meeting Sunday. The Wolverines' sputtering offense could be improved if running back Mike Hart, who suffered a hamstring injury Sept. 10 against Notre Dame, returns. The best offense in the stadium, though, will belong to Michigan State, which ranks third nationally in total offense. Quarterback Drew Stanton is fast becoming a Heisman contender. Stanton is eager for revenge after losing to Michigan, 45-37, in triple overtime last season.