? Texas (1-0) at UCLA (1-0)
Having two top Heisman candidates like the Longhorns' Ricky Williams and the Bruins' Cade McNown on the same field, as will be the case at the Rose Bowl on Saturday, is an occasion worth savoring. It doesn't happen often. Here are three memorable such matchups.
1996—Florida's Danny Wuerffel versus Tennessee's Peyton Manning. There is a way to lose the Heisman in September. Manning threw four first-half interceptions and lost his composure against the Gators' relentless pressure. Wuerffel threw for four touchdowns in the 35-29 victory. Edge: Wuerffel. Heisman: Wuerffel.
1991—Florida State's Casey Weldon versus Michigan's Desmond Howard. Weldon threw for 268 yards and three TDs, leading the Seminoles to a 51-31 win. Howard caught two scoring passes, one a sensational 42-yarder inside the back line of the end zone, and finished with 189 all-purpose yards. Edge: Weldon. Heisman: Howard.
1967- UCLA's Gary Beban versus USC's O.J. Simpson. This was the best Heisman showdown. In a 21-20 UCLA loss, Beban threw for 301 yards and two touchdowns. Simpson rushed for 177 yards and two touchdowns, the last a 64-yard game-winning run that remains one of the most storied in Trojans history. Edge: none. Heisman: Beban.
As for Saturday, it will be an upset if McNown doesn't get the better of Williams. Texas won't lie down against UCLA the way it did a year ago, when the Bruins won 66-3. But the Longhorns' debut under coach Mack Brown last week highlighted how much rebuilding lies ahead in Austin. Texas beat New Mexico State 66-36 but allowed the Aggies 233 rushing yards and 250 passing yards. Too bad that Williams, who rushed for 215 yards and six touchdowns on 36 carries, doesn't get college football's equivalent of landing on free parking—a chance to play against the Texas defense.
? Arizona State at BYU
? Syracuse at Michigan
You would have to go to Wall Street to find better gatherings of losers. Look for the Cougars and the Wolverines to continue to fall. By the way, the last defending national champion to start 0-2 was Penn State, which lost its first three in 1983.
Rice at Purdue.
The Owls' option offense has confounded greater defenses than the Boilermakers'. Purdue has had two weeks to get ready. That may not be enough.