Arizona State at New Mexico: New Mexico can score. They just usually get outscored. Todd Graham could have 40 on the board by halftime.
Memphis at UCLA: Memphis actually does a pretty good job keeping their games close. They weren’t blown out until the final games of the season and were in it against superior squads like Lousiville and UCF late. The Bruins will be prepping for Texas, so just keep one eye on it as you’re closing up your Saturday night.
Oregon State at Hawaii: Mike Riley in a non-conference game on the road is always a nervous prospect. The Beavers have blown so many of these games it’s hard to feel safe even it should be reasonable to feel safe.
Colorado at UMass: UMass is one of those teams that could qualify to be the worst in college football. They scored once (or no) times in six of their defeats last season, with their lone win coming against 0-12 Miami (Ohio). Still, Colorado wins on the road approximately never, so keep your eyes on this one.
Sacramento State at Cal: Cal has beaten their last two FCS opponents by a combined 26 points, and the game was very much in doubt both times in the 4th quarter. After last season, Sonny Dykes can’t take any wins for granted.
Washington State at Nevada: Nevada has struggled when someone not named Chris Ault has coached them, and this year figures to be no different. Still, Reno is no easy place to win, and the Cougars will have a very difficult test. At the very least, Air Raid vs. Pistol should provide some offensive fireworks.
Solid non-conference tests
Eastern Washington at Washington: The Eagles knocked off Oregon State last season and nearly did the same thing the year previous to Washington State. I definitely wouldn’t feel safe if I were Chris Petersen. Except a competitive game early.
Fresno State at Utah: This is a much more winnable game for Fresno State, and they could get drawn into a really impressive duel in Salt Lake City. The Utes usually play well at home, so this could be a compelling afternoon shootout.
Arizona at UTSA: UTSA was very plucky in their first year in the FBS. They went 7-5 in Conference USA, they competed with Oklahoma State in an up-and-down affair, and they actually held Arizona’s offense down in Tucson. The rematch could be a compelling one.
USC at Stanford: The last four games in this series have been decided by two, eight, seven, and three points. All of those games came down to the final play. This is your game to watch ten thousand times out of ten thousand, especially since Steve Sarkisian has proven to really give David Shaw trouble. And this leads us to…
Michigan State at Oregon: What a double header. The winner of this game will almost certainly have the inside track for a playoff bid if they can run through their schedule. Marcus Mariota will face off against one of the fiercest units in college football, one that got the best of undefeated Ohio State. Can’t wait.