Over the weekend, Aaron Suttles from the Tuscaloosa News reported that Alabama is in talks about home-and-home matchups with 2 blue bloods.
Texas and Notre Dame.
Alabama is also finalizing another neutral site game for the 2020 season with USC in Arlington, TX. Along with Louisville in Orland in 2018, Duke in Atlanta in 2019, and Miami in Atlanta in 2021, that would make 12 out of 15 seasons that Alabama would have opened with a neutral site game, and not brought a marquee opponent into Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Basically, big-money Alabama boosters are ready to slow down on the neutral site games and start getting some big name teams down to Tuscaloosa, mainly because of how much money they are donating to the school, but not seeing their season tickets being worth the price they’re paying, due to the schedule bringing 3 smaller non-conference games, and the SEC being down over the past few years.
To go along with that news, I started thinking of a few College Football home-and-home matchups that should happen on college campuses, if only because of the pageantry the games would bring.
Here are 11 games that would be great on college campuses, and my reasoning why.
1. LSU vs USC
According to Winsipedia, USC and LSU have only played two times in the past, with both teams notching a win. The last game played between the 2 was in 1984.
Could you imagine the culture shock of people from Los Angeles coming to Baton Rouge, LA for tailgating? I would imagine most of them have never seen anything like Death Valley.
I really thought about this matchup because of the 2003 split national championship, where LSU won the BCS title, but USC won the AP championship. Everyone wanted this matchup for several years, because both were traditional programs that had just started becoming powerhouses again in the early 2000s.
There’s a lot of tradition, and the fanbases would both be shocked when they visited each others’ campuses. Imagine LSU fans going out drinking in LA, or USC fans showing up and eating cajun food for the first time.
2. Penn St vs Oklahoma
According to Winsipedia, Oklahoma owns a 2-0 record against Penn St, with the last game between the 2 being played back in 1986.
If this game could happen before James Franklin and Lincoln Riley move on from these schools, that would make the matchup even better.
These are traditional powers, with iconic uniforms, and their campuses would look at a game like this with a whole new vigor. No matter the year, this would at least be fun to see the Crimson and Cream vs the Blue and White.
3. Georgia vs Washington
Georgia and Washington have never played each other.
That fact alone make this one worth it.
I thought of this matchup mainly because of Jacob Eason transferring from Georgia to Washington. The coaching matchup between Chris Peterson and Kirby Smart would be interesting, as Peterson is known more for his offense, and Smart, of course, for his defense.
4. Alabama vs Oregon
Alabama and Oregon have never played each other.
This is mainly a throw-back to the late 2000s, when Chip Kelly had the Ducks offense absolutely rolling, and Nick Saban had Alabama’s defense tops in the country every year.
We got to see Auburn vs Oregon, but the matchup everyone wanted to see was always Alabama vs Oregon because of the contrast of styles.
Nowadays, it would be interesting just to see Saban vs former assistant coach Mario Cristobal, who is the new head coach in Eugene. Along with that, Oregon’s stadium only holds about 55k people, while Oregon fans would get to see one of the biggest stadiums in the country.
5. Ohio St vs Florida
Florida owns a 2-0 record over Ohio St, with both wins coming in bowl games.
In 2007, Florida won a national championship by beating Ohio St 41-14, and in the 2012 Gator Bowl, Florida, under coach Will Muschamp, beat Ohio St 24-17, who was coached by Luke Fickell, although they had just hired Urban Meyer to take over after the bowl game.
So long as Dan Mullen and Urban Meyer are the coaches when this matchup happens (I doubt it ever will), you’ve got the storylines of Mullen being OC for Meyer at Florida, you’ve got Meyer returning to Gainesville, and imagine the fanbases at both schools when the opposing team rushes onto the home field.
I’d like to see Florida get back to relevance before this series happens, but the idea sounds amazing.
6. Texas vs Michigan
These teams have only played once before, with Texas winning 38-37 in 2005.
This is actually a series that is already scheduled for 2024 and 2027. Two of the 3 winningest college football teams in history, with huge stadiums, passionate fanbases, and big money everywhere.
Not to mention Tom Herman and Jim Harbaugh’s electric personalities, and this game would absolutely be must-see-TV.
Neither team is elite right now, but that won’t matter. Once those helmets are shown against each other, everyone would watch.
7. Clemson vs Michigan St
Clemson and Michigan St have never played each other.
I really love the contrasting styles of Clemson coach Dabo Swinney and Michigan St coach Mark Dantonio. Swinney’s personality is electric and active, while Dantonio is quite, conservative, and focused. Both seem to work. Swinney’s teams have, historically, won with a fast paced offense, while Dantonio slows down the game down and wins with his defense.
Along with that, the color schemes in the opposing stadiums would look incredible.
8. Tennessee vs Oklahoma St
Tennessee is 1-0 all-time over Oklahoma St, winning 31-0 in a bowl game back in 1995.
This would be fun, mainly because of the constant flirtation from Mike Gundy with the Tennessee head coaching job.
I think Jeremy Pruitt will be able to get this program respectable again, and he’ll build it with defense, which will be a stark contrast to what Gundy has built Oklahoma St on.
Both teams wear orange, and the cowboy mascot walking around Neyland stadium just sounds interesting to me, along with Smokey showing up in Stillwater.
9. West Virginia vs Washington St
West Virginia and Washington St have never played each other.
The only way I’d be interested in this game is if Dana Holgersen and Mike Leach are still the coaches.
There could be 150 passes put up in this game, with both teams scoring 70. There would be fireworks all over the field. Not to mention, Wazzu fans showing up in Morgantown, and vice versa. We gotta get this one to happen.
10. Georgia Tech vs Navy
Georgia Tech and Navy have played 25 times, with Georgia Tech holding a 16-9 advantage. The last time they played was in 2001, which was a 70-7 win for Georgia Tech.
This one was played a lot more in the past… but it should happen now because of how well the 2 coaches know each other.
Paul Johnson built Navy with the triple-option, and they still run the same thing. Georgia Tech now runs the exact same scheme. Both teams would score and put up yardage, and, because there would be basically no passes thrown, the game would be over in about 2 hours.
11. Texas A&M vs Wisconsin
Texas A&M and Wisconsin have never played each other.
Camp Randall vs Kyle Field. The fanbases at these stadiums would be absolutely raucous. Imagine night games at both places, especially when they’re both winning.
Not to mention the drinking involved… Wisconsin fans drank the Provo, UT out of alcohol when they played at BYU last year. Imagine the drinking contests during the tailgating. Whew.