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College football season kicks off with a few bangs

Ralph D. Russo Associated Press

From Spurrier’s return to ‘Canes vs. ‘Noles, the major college football season will open in full force.

For fans who’ve been counting the days until the start of the season, what better way to spend the long holiday weekend than immersed in games from tonight to Monday night.

When Steve Spurrier last coached a college game, his Florida Gators ripped up Maryland 56-23 in the 2002 Orange Bowl.

Then it was off to the NFL for two poor years with the Redskins. After a year off, Spurrier’s back in the Southeastern Conference.

First up for his South Carolina Gamecocks is Central Florida and coach George O’Leary tonight.

“I hope we play like winners play,” Spurrier said.

That shouldn’t be too hard against the Golden Knights, who went 0-11 last season and have lost 15 straight overall.

Many Top 25 teams also open the season with less-than-demanding opponents.

No. 1 Southern California looks to extend its 22-game winning streak in paradise Saturday night. The Trojans are five-touchdown favorites against Hawaii, which allowed 63 TDs last season.

No. 13 Georgia has a tough task, trying to stop high-scoring Boise State. The Broncos are ranked No. 18.

Wall-to-wall football wraps up Labor Day with the latest installment of one of the game’s best rivalries. No. 9 Miami plays at No. 14 Florida State with the Hurricanes looking to extend a six-game winning streak against the Seminoles.

All games Saturday unless noted

The lineupTimeTV
No. 1 USC at Hawaii
Pick: USC 49-134ESPN2
No. 2 Texas vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
Pick: UT 61-144FSN
No. 3 Tennessee vs. UAB
Pick: UT 41-219:30
No. 4 Michigan vs. Northern Illinois
Pick: UM 35-1412:30
No. 6 Ohio St. vs. Miami (Ohio)
Pick: OSU 37-109
No. 7 Oklahoma vs. TCU
Pick: OU 48-169
No. 8 Virginia Tech at N.C. State (Sunday)
Pick: VT 23-144:15ESPN2
No. 9 Miami at No. 14 Florida St. (Monday)
Pick: UM 21-165ABC
No. 10 Florida vs. Wyoming
Pick: UF 39-243
No. 11 Iowa vs. Ball St.
Pick: UI 44-149
No. 12 Louisville at Kentucky (Sunday)
Pick: UL 52-2312:30ESPN
No. 13 Georgia vs. No. 18 Boise St.
Pick: UG 35-302:30ESPN
No. 16 Auburn vs. Georgia Tech
Pick: AU 16-135:45ESPN
No. 17 Texas A&M at Clemson
Pick: A&M 29-245
No. 19 Cal vs. Sacramento St.
Pick: UC 55-62
No. 20 Arizona St. vs. Temple (Tonight)
Pick: ASU 52-167
No. 22 Boston College at BYU
Pick: BYU 23-2112:30
No. 23 Pittsburgh vs. Notre Dame
Pick: UND 36-285ABC
No. 25 Virginia vs. W. Michigan
Pick: UV 39-63:30
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