Alabama vs. Florida State, Michigan vs. Florida and other big-time Week 1 matchups are getting the overwhelming bulk of media attention this week — as they should be. Those are two huge playoff-impacting games deserving of millions of eyeballs.
However, the Week 1 college football schedule is also littered with other delectable matchups worthy of your attention. From rising programs and up-and-coming coaches to powerful offenses and elite quarterbacks, you won't have any issue staying entertained.
Here are five games during the first full weekend of college football that you must watch.
Date and Time (ET): Thursday, Aug. 31 – 7:30 p.m.
Before we wonder if All-American candidates Mason Rudolph and James Washington can lead Oklahoma State past Oklahoma for the Big 12 title and into the College Football Playoff, let's talk about that tricky non-conference schedule.
Tulsa lost quarterback Dane Evans but return a slew of playmakers on both sides of the ball. This is far from a upset proclamation but do not dismiss the Golden Hurricane.
Date and Time (ET): Friday, Sept. 1 – 8:00 p.m.
Channel: Pac-12 Network
Colorado State ran all over Oregon State in the second half of their Week Zero game. Can they do the same against Colorado, the defending Pac-12 South champions who lost three defensive backs to the NFL?
Offensively, the Buffs are breaking in a new quarterback (Steven Montez) but return their top rusher in All-Pac-12 candidate Phillip Lindsay and top six receiving targets, a group led by Shay Fields (15.8 yards per catch in 2016).
For what it's worth, Colorado throttled both Colorado State and Oregon State last year, winning by a combined score of 91-13.
Date and Time (ET): Saturday, Sept. 2, 12:00 p.m.
Channel: Big Ten Network
A year after coming within inches of a playoff appearances, Iowa's playoff hopes were dashed in Week 2 last year, losing to North Dakota State at home. They'll look to avoid a similar early letdown with a visit from upset-capable Wyoming.
All eyes will be on Josh Allen — widely believed to be a top-three quarterback prospect in the 2018 NFL Draft — but the Cowboys also return one of the best offensive lines in the Group of Five and nine defensive starters.
Temple at Notre Dame
Date and Time (ET): Saturday, Sept. 2, 3:30 p.m.
Easily the most high-profile game in this group, Temple's visit to Notre Dame is still going largely unnoticed.
The Irish's many staff changes will be watched closely as they look to eradicate the stench from last year's four-win season against a Temple program coming off back-to-back 10-win seasons. The Owls lost eight starters from an elite defense (18.4 points per game) but still have a strong interior line and secondary that will test new Notre Dame quarterback Brandon Wimbush.
Notre Dame won their last meeting, 24-20, in 2015.
Date and Time (ET): Saturday, Sept. 2, 4:00 p.m.
Channel: Local TV and Streaming
This game is worth your time for one reason: Eastern Washington is good enough to beat Texas Tech. If that happens, Red Raiders' head coach Kliff Kingsbury might not make it to Week 2 — or if he does, he'll have zero margin for error the remainder of the season.
On the other side, if Texas Tech can make a statement and gain confidence with a demolition of one of best FCS teams in the country, it could set the stage for a bounceback season.
Fans can watch the game on local TV or via a streaming service.