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Play it forward: Week ahead in college football

Five things to watch this week in college football:

1. The top two teams in the country put it all on the line this week… we wish. Top-ranked Alabama hosts an open house party against Chattanooga of the FCS and No. 2 Florida State welcomes in Idaho, which is 1-9 and coming off a loss to Old Dominion. In a perfect world, Chattanooga would be playing Idaho.

2. Baylor continued its savage assault through the Big 12 with Saturday's 63-34 win over Texas Tech but faces its toughest game of the season this week at Oklahoma State. How'd you like to be an Oklahoma State team averaging 40 points a game wondering how to come up with three extra touchdowns to match Baylor's average of 61?

3. Arizona State (8-2) and UCLA (8-2) fended off tough weekend tests against Oregon State and Washington to set up Saturday's Pac-12 South showdown at the Rose Bowl. Arizona State clinches the division with a win and UCLA can clinch with closing wins over Arizona State and USC.

4. Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel can make a convincing case for a second Heisman Trophy if he can topple Louisiana State in Baton Rouge. A victory would avenge last year's loss to LSU on a weekend in which Heisman candidates AJ McCarron (Alabama) and Jameis Winston (Florida State) are facing inferior competition.

5. Missouri (9-1, 5-1) continues its unexpected march to a Southeastern Conference East title with an important weekend trip to Mississippi, which has won four straight after a 3-3 start. Missouri is trying to hold off two-loss South Carolina in the division race. The Gamecocks hold the tiebreaker based on their miraculous, double-overtime comeback win at Missouri.

chris.dufresne@latimes.com

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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