Typical nonconference schedules from having four cupcake opponents to slates that didn’t include a single Power 5 foe have slowly dissipated in the college ranks. The believed Pac-12 entitled are stepping up their game and putting their national championship hopes on the line in September. Southern California head coach Clay Helton might have the toughest nonconference schedule in division 1 that includes a neutral site affair against Alabama in Texas. The closest thing to an expected win of the Trojans first three games of the season comes against Utah State, a team that has averaged nine wins per campaign over the last four seasons, and a troupe that is 3-3 against ranked schools under bench boss Matt Wells.
Neighboring UCLA has a tough Week #1 test against Texas A&M in College Station.
One certainty in Week #1 of College Football is Ohio State head man Urban Meyer brain washing his players into believing that their season opening opponent is nationally ranked and capable of winning in Columbus when the Buckeyes open with Bowling Green. Smirk at the aforementioned belief that OSU will take BG seriously if you so choose — but of any Power Five program Meyer brings back the fewest returning starters in the country — and most of the OSU losses were on the defensive side of the ball. The Buckeye’s opening foe, Bowling Green, ranked as one of the top five prolific offenses in all of college football a year ago.
Three ACC schools take to the gridiron in Week #1 in contests that are sure to entertain. The trio of feature events include Georgia and North Carolina, Auburn and Clemson with a Labor Day showstopper when Ole Miss travels a skip and a jump south to tangle with Florida State.
Heisman hopeful and the favorite of many college football pundits, Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey and his teammates, open the season with a visit from Kansas State. Legendary head coach Bill Snyder and his team are coming off a down season but one that saw them install their fifth-string quarterback against Oklahoma State and win. This game is a departure from Snyder’s modus operandi of playing division 3 schools to pad their nonconference record.
The Big 12 favorites this year, the Oklahoma Sooners, open against a good Houston team at NRG.
The Texas Longhorns are looking to avenge their embarrassing performance a year ago in South Bend when they were routed by the Irish. This year, Notre Dame has to travel to Austin, which should offer Charlie Strong’s young squad the opportunity to upset the visiting favorites.
Week #1 of the 2016 College Football schedule is arguably one of the more exciting the past decade and William Hill of Las Vegas has updated their point-spreads for the first week of September.