Beautiful Friday for football in the upper midwest. I actually had to have a sweatshirt on for a game in September, and I'm a VERY warm person by nature, so that's pretty rare. I loved those games when I was playing in high school ball, and my alma mater right now is the top ranked team in their level for the entire state, so it's good quality football as well.
Today's games will be interesting. You have the inter-Iowa matchup, you have the Gophers playing their only real "challenge" of the non-conference schedule, and you have Georgia-South Carolina in what's already looking like a "must-win" for SC to stay afloat in the SEC East. Some of the other highlight games include Notre Dame at Purdue, which should be a rout but does have some fun tradition, UCLA traveling to Texas in what should be a Bruin beatdown of the Longhorns - but who knows with road non-conference games, and a much-improved Tennessee team heading to Oklahoma. Oklahoma is likely not going to be challenged too much, but I'll be interested to see how much fight Tennessee puts up as they've looked better than they have since the Lane Kiffin debacle.
In the B1G, it could be a rough weekend. Maryland (still feels weird seeing them on a Big Ten scoreboard) hosts West Virginia in a tough game, Illinois travels to Washington, and Penn State travels to Rutgers, all three could end up as losses for Big Ten squads. Add in some in-state match ups that often have a little more fire than an average non-conference game like the aforementioned Iowa state battle, the Purdue/Notre Dame matchup, and the Ohio State/Kent State game. Add in the MAC matchups this weekend for Michigan and Indiana, where at least one Big Ten teams seems to get upset by that conference each year, and you could have yet another rough weekend for the Big Ten. For those Gopher fans out there, winning this week could indicate a team with a chance to finish in the top half of the conference for the first time in a long time, and perhaps even play in a bowl game not sponsored by a brake alignment company!