World’s Earliest Week 1 College Football Preview

This is always one of my favorite columns to write, and God only knows how long I've been doing it. As always, the irreplaceable is an indispensable guide to college football and basketball TV listings, and that site is the reason I am able to do this column.

After many years of Week 1 being sort of meh, with the bigger non-conference matchups following in Week 2 or 3, the last 2-3 years have seen a resurgence of big games in the opening week. Now, however, it looks like we are back to a week 1 slate that's uninspiring, all in all. Let's take a look at some of the highlights.

No start times have been established yet, and only game (Notre Dame on NBC) has a network pinned down.

Thursday, August 31st

Nebraska at Minnesota

The bad news is, this is the only Thursday game featuring two FBS teams besides Kent State at UCF. The good news is, there will surely be more games moved from Saturday to Thursday before the season starts.

Friday, September 1st

Miami (OH) at Miami (FL)

This will be the fourth time these teams have played each other (with the Floridians winning in 1945, 1946, and 1987), and they should play way more often than that just to troll the announcers and journalists covering the game.

Louisville vs. Georgia Tech at Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Mercedes-Benz Stadium is where the Falcons play. Surely you can't expect Georgia Tech's on-campus stadium, which seats a mere 55,000, to suffice when LOUISVILLE comes to town, can you?

Saturday, September 2

Tennessee State at Notre Dame, NBC

I don't recall Notre Dame scheduling an FCS school before. If the Tigers pull off the upset, would that be greater than, lesser than, or equal to Appalachian State's win over Michigan?

South Carolina vs. North Carolina at Charlotte

The winner of this game gets sole possession of the moniker "Carolina."

(Just kidding. I'm sorry, South Carolina, but no one outside of your state thinks of "Carolina" as you guys. Same with "USC.")

UTSA at Houston

Last year was a barnburner; quietly, UTSA is back-to-back Conference USA champs, so they are no pushovers for AAC, I mean Big 12, foes.

Colorado at TCU

If Deion's team keeps this one close, a year after getting pole-axed by TCU and making a case for the worst FBS team in America, I'm going to have to start Handing it to Him.

Ohio State at Indiana

Used to be the only conference games in Week 1 were a smattering of SEC and ACC games. Now it's the Big Ten rather than the SEC. Northwestern travels to Rutgers on this day, as well.

Florida at Utah

I still well remember Florida's victory in this game last year, and how it was not a precursor for how the season would go for either team.

Boise State at Washington

This game would've been a lot more tantalizing five years ago.

West Virginia at Penn State

This game would've been a lot more tantalizing 25 years ago.

Coastal Carolina at UCLA

Upset alert is strong on this one. This could definitely be the sneaky-good game of the day.

Virginia vs. Tennessee at Nashville

Given their proximity, I'm a bit surprised Virginia and Tennessee don't play more often.

Incarnate Word at UTEP

Disappointingly, this is the only game featuring an FCS team that made it as far as the quarterfinals in the FCS playoffs last year squaring off this week against an FBS foe. Very winnable game for UIW.

Sunday, September 3rd

LSU vs. Florida State at Orlando

For the second year in a row, this is the Week 1 marquee matchup. Last year was a thriller and I'm glad they're running it back.

Monday, September 4th

Clemson at Duke

For many years now, the ACC gives us a Labor Day night game. This is the worst one yet.

Enjoy the games, everyone.

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