Top 5 college football games to watch in week 4 of the 2013 season (5 items)
It's rivalry week in Provo as BYU and Utah face off for the last time until 2016. Chuckie Keeton and Utah State have a second chance to beat a Pac-12 team on the road against USC on Saturday. Stanford and Arizona State face off for national recognition and credibility.
Just another great week of college football as many of week four's best games happen in the West.
So, what games do you need to watch this week?
Lafe Peavler is a national college football featured columnist for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter @MasterPeavler
1 of 5. No. 5: No. 3 Clemson at N.C. State
No. 3 Clemson is riding high after a huge week one win over Georgia at home, but it still has to run through the ACC unscathed to remain a national championship contender. The Tigers open up conference play on the road against N.C. State.
They'd do well to beware the infamous "Raleigh Curse."
After all, the Wolfpack is also undefeated. However, quarterback Pete Thomas is off to a rough start with just 449 yards passing, no touchdowns and three interceptions. Meanwhile, Clemson's Tajh Boyd has 439 yards passing, three touchdowns and no interceptions.
2 of 5. No. 4: Michigan State at No. 22 Notre Dame
Michigan State sits just outside the Top 25 in the AP Poll while it is No. 24 in the Coaches Poll. The Spartans are a perfect 3-0 as they head to South Bend, but they've yet to face a quality opponent. This game should be a good measuring stick for Michigan State before it starts Big Ten play Oct. 5 at Iowa.
The Irish aren't a national championship contender this season, but they will test the Spartans at beautiful Notre Dame Stadium. Can Tommy Rees and the Notre Dame offense move the ball against the stingy Michigan State defense?
3 of 5. No. 3: Utah State at USC
Utah State looks like the team to beat in the Mountain West after its 52-20 dismantling of Air Force two weeks ago, and it rolls into Los Angeles off a big win over FCS Weber State 70-6. After a narrow miss at Utah to start the season, Chuckie Keeton and the Aggies look to pick up a big win on the road against a Pac-12 team.
Meanwhile, USC's Lane Kiffin is trying to just survive the season after a disappointing 10-7 loss to Washington State in week two. However, the USC offense seemed to finally find a groove as it routed Boston College 35-7. Regardless, a loss to Utah State would only intensify the calls for Kiffin's firing.
4 of 5. No. 2: No. 23 Arizona State at No. 5 Stanford
The stakes: No. 5 Stanford has slowly been slipping in both major polls and needs a win over a ranked opponent to help solidify its credentials. Good thing No. 23 Arizona State is coming to town on Saturday.
However, the Sun Devils are out to prove that Saturday's controversial win over Wisconsin wasn't just a fluke. A win over the Cardinal on the road would do wonders for Todd Graham and Arizona State's credibility. It would also give the Sun Devils a leg up in a tight race in the Pac-12 South.
5 of 5. No. 1: Utah at BYU
The stakes: Nothing less than supreme in-state bragging rights for three years as BYU and Utah won't play each other again until 2016. BYU is looking to continue building momentum after its 40-21 beat-down of Texas two weeks ago. Meanwhile, Utah is trying to get over a tough 51-48 overtime loss to Oregon State, and a win over the Cougars would be the perfect antidote.
The scene will be electric under the lights of LaVell Edwards Stadium. This rivalry has produced some fantastic finishes, such as the Answered Prayer in 2006, 4th-and-18 in 2007 and Burton's Block in 2010. Chances are this game will also go down to the wire as the Cougars and Utes tangle one last time before the hiatus.