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Saturday’s Top 25 college football matchups

No. 1 Alabama at Missouri

The Tigers have struggled in their first season in the SEC with an 0-3 start. Now come the Crimson Tide, who are coming off a bye. This is the first head-to-head meeting between the coaches; Nick Saban and Gary Pinkel were teammates at Kent State.

No. 3 South Carolina at No. 9 LSU

The Gamecocks, who are riding a school-record 10-game winning streak, can maintain at least a share of the SEC East lead by remaining unbeaten in league play. A victory by the Tigers would allow them to take the SEC West by winning out. LSU hasn’t lost at home since Oct. 10, 2009.

No. 4 Florida at Vanderbilt

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The Gators have won 21 straight in the series but they can’t get caught looking ahead to a showdown with South Carolina on Oct. 20 at the Swamp. Vanderbilt has not beaten a ranked opponent since 2008.

No. 5 West Virginia at Texas Tech

Dynamic Mountaineers QB Geno Smith takes the on nation’s top-ranked pass defense (117 yards passing per game). The Red Raiders are also 12th against the rush (92.6).

No. 6 Kansas State at Iowa State

It’s expected to pour in central Iowa on Saturday, but perhaps no two teams in the Big 12 are prepared for sloppy conditions more than the Wildcats and Cyclones, who both like to run the ball.

No. 7 Notre Dame vs. No. 17 Stanford

The Cardinal have won three straight in the series. The Fighting Irish are the only team in the country that has yet to trail this season.

No. 8 Ohio State at Indiana

The Hoosiers’ last three opponents have averaged 38.7 points per game; that doesn’t bode well against a Buckeyes team that scored 63 on Nebraska last weekend.

No. 10 Oregon State at BYU

The Beavers, playing without injured QB Sean Mannion, are seeking their first 5-0 start since 1939. The Cougars will be wearing all-black uniforms for the first time in the modern era.

No. 11 Southern Cal at Washington

This is the teams’ last meeting until 2015. The Trojans can set a school record for consecutive games without being shut out (186 and counting).

No. 12 Florida State vs. Boston College

Last weekend’s loss at N.C. State dropped the Seminoles nine spots in the AP poll. The Eagles have yet to beat a FBS team this year.

No. 13 Oklahoma vs. No. 15 Texas

Red River Rivalry fact: No team has won the game with fewer yards rushing since 1997. The Longhorns are averaging 209.4, the Sooners 190.5.

No. 18 Louisville at Pittsburgh

This is the final meeting before Pitt heads to the ACC next fall. The Panthers have won the last four games in the series.

No. 19 Mississippi State vs. Tennessee

The Bulldogs have scored at least 25 points in their first five games for the first time in the program’s 113-year history.

No. 20 Rutgers vs. Syracuse

With a win, the Scarlet Knights would improve to 6-0 for the third time since 1976, and become bowl eligible for the seventh time in eight seasons.

No. 21 Cincinnati vs. Fordham

The Rams were a late schedule-filler for the Bearcats, the void caused by TCU’s spurning of the Big East for the Big 12.

No. 22 Texas A&M at No. 23 Louisiana Tech

With a 12-game regular-season winning streak, the longest in the nation, the Bulldogs are playing as a ranked team for the first time since 1999. This game was originally scheduled for Aug. 30, but was postponed because of Hurricane Isaac.

No. 24 Boise State vs. Fresno State

The Broncos have dominated the rivalry in recent years, winning the previous six matchups, including the last two by a combined 101 points.

No. 25 Michigan vs. Illinois

In their last meeting in the Big House, the teams set Big Ten records with 132 combined points (Michigan, 67-6) and 1,237 yards of offense.

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