College football 2021: Here are the best games to watch in Week 1

Alabama quarterback Bryce Young (9) rolls out on a passing drill
Alabama quarterback Bryce Young’s (9) debut leading the Crimson Tide offense is among the best games to watch in Week 1 of the college football season.
(Vasha Hunt / Associated Press)

Each week, the Los Angeles Times’ national college sports reporter J. Brady McCollough will help plan your Saturday game watch schedule by revealing the matchups he will have his eye on at each stage of the day’s slate.

Kegs and Eggs

No. 19 Penn State at No. 12 Wisconsin, 9 a.m., Fox

Two tortured teams from 2020 get an early start on making things right.

Stanford vs. Kansas State (Arlington, Texas), 9 a.m., FS1


The Pac-12’s first shot to build the league’s overall résumé.

Fresno State at No. 11 Oregon, 11 a.m., Pac-12 Network

The Ducks are heavy favorites, but the Bulldogs have the firepower to hang.

Los Angeles Times college sports reporter J. Brady McCollough picks the week’s eight best games, including No. 5 Georgia at No. 3 Clemson, plus the USC and UCLA games.

Sept. 2, 2021

Fire up the grill

No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 14 Miami (Atlanta), 12:30 p.m, ABC

Don’t miss Bryce Young’s debut as the Crimson Tide’s starting quarterback.

No. 17 Indiana at No. 18 Iowa, 12:30 p.m., Big Ten Network

The Hoosiers were a fun story last year, but reality could come quickly here.

No. 23 Louisiana at No. 21 Texas, 1:30 p.m., Fox


Steve Sarkisian’s Texas debut could be spoiled by Billy Napier’s feisty Cajuns.

Louisiana coach Billy Napier argues a call during a game against South Alabama on Nov. 14 in Lafayette, La.
(Matthew Hinton / Associated Press)

Night-game buzz

Oregon State at Purdue, 4 p.m., FS1

This future “Alliance” game could get wild if the defenses don’t show up.

No. 5 Georgia at No. 3 Clemson, 4:30 p.m., ABC

These schools feel like they should be rivals by proximity. This rare matchup is a treat.

No. 16 Louisiana State at UCLA, 5:30 p.m., Fox

The Rose Bowl now sells alcohol. LSU fans may empty the taps by halftime.

The 2021 college football season will see plenty of the same dominant programs at the top of the rankings, but here are five teams set to play spoiler.

Aug. 30, 2021

After dark

Nevada at California, 7:30 p.m., FS1

Nevada’s “Air Raid” should give Justin Wilcox’s defense plenty of stress.

Brigham Young vs. Arizona (Las Vegas), 7:30 p.m., ESPN

The Cougars invade Allegiant Stadium looking to ruin Jedd Fisch’s Arizona debut.

Utah State at Washington State, 8 p.m., Pac-12 Network

This one may go until midnight. These two offenses may throw it 100 times.