College football Week 1 preview: Deion Sanders makes Colorado debut

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After seven months of ready, a faculty soccer Saturday has lastly arrived. 

Week Zero supplied a style for faculty soccer followers hungry for the return of their favourite groups, however Saturday’s Week 1 slate means the season is formally upon us. 

Notre Dame quarterback Sam Hartman looks to throw

Notre Dame quarterback Sam Hartman appears to be like to move throughout the Aer Lingus Faculty Soccer Basic match between Notre Dame and Navy Midshipmen on the Aviva Stadium in Dublin on Saturday. (Brendan Moran/Sportsfile through Getty Photographs)

It’s time to shut the e-book on convention realignment — not less than for one weekend — whereas followers lastly get a take a look at new rosters with a clear slate. 

The Georgia Bulldogs need to turn out to be the primary group to win three consecutive nationwide championships because the Minnesota Golden Gophers pulled off the feat from 1934-1936, and USC quarterback Caleb Williams is hoping to turn out to be simply the second back-to-back Heisman Trophy winner in faculty soccer historical past. 


There are quarterback questions all around the nation as Alabama and Ohio State try to interchange Bryce Younger and C.J. Stroud, respectively.

The College Football Playoff National Championship trophy

The Faculty Soccer Playoff Nationwide Championship trophy is displayed on the sphere earlier than the title recreation between the Georgia Bulldogs and the TCU Horned Frogs at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California, on Jan. 9, 2023. (Steph Chambers/Getty Photographs)

However all of that might be determined as the following 14 weeks play out on the best way to the nationwide championship recreation in Houston on Jan. 8, 2024.

Faculty soccer has returned, and with it comes three days of motion. Let’s check out a number of video games to pay attention to throughout Week 1 of the school soccer season. 

No. 17 TCU vs. Colorado – Midday ET 

“Coach Prime” lastly makes his FBS debut. There has by no means been a group with a lot hype after going 1-11 the season prior and having only one season with double-digit wins over a 21-year interval. 

Enter Deion Sanders. 

Sanders has infused life right into a dormant program, placing Colorado on the map earlier than even taking the sphere. 

Deion Sanders at Folsom Field

Head coach Deion Sanders of the Colorado Buffaloes watches as his group warms up previous to their spring recreation at Folsom Area in Boulder, Colorado, on April 22, 2023. (Matthew Stockman/Getty Photographs)

Now, faculty soccer followers get to see the precise product. And what the product might be could be very a lot a query. 


Sanders has utterly flipped the roster at Colorado, with the Buffaloes returning simply 10 scholarship gamers from 2022 with 68 new scholarship gamers on the roster, in line with The Athletic. 

“They got here right here as a result of they wished [the spotlight]. They got here right here as a result of they wished the sunshine. They wished the smoke. They wished the eye. They wished the main focus. They wished the love,” Sanders mentioned of his gamers.

Shedeur Sanders, Deion’s son, might be underneath middle after throwing for 70 touchdowns and simply 14 interceptions in two seasons at Jackson State. Travis Hunter, the No. 1 recruit within the 2022 class, additionally adopted “Coach Prime” to Colorado and is predicted to play each methods. 

For TCU, coming off a nationwide championship recreation look, there are some new faces. 

The Horned Frogs misplaced offensive coordinator Garrett Riley, Heisman finalist quarterback Max Duggan, operating again Kendre Miller and broad receiver Quentin Johnston.

TCU head coach Sonny Dykes against Georgia

Head coach Sonny Dykes of the TCU Horned Frogs appears to be like on from the sideline throughout the Faculty Soccer Playoff Nationwide Championship Recreation towards the Georgia Bulldogs at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California, on Jan. 9, 2023. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Photographs)


“Now we have quite a bit to show. And I feel we need to show to people who final yr wasn’t a fluke,” head coach Sonny Dykes mentioned. “So I feel there’s a little little bit of perhaps extra of a chip on our shoulder this yr than there was final yr due to that.”

Through the 2022 season, TCU went 6-1 in one-score video games.

No. 10 Washington vs. Boise State – 3:30 p.m. ET 

Expectations are sky-high for the Washington Huskies as they put together for his or her remaining season within the Pac-12. 

Washington has its highest preseason rating since 2018 and returns quarterback Michael Penix Jr. after the Huskies had the second-best offense within the nation final season by way of yards per recreation (515.8). 

Kalen DeBoer is coming into his second season as head coach after main Washington to their most wins (11) because the 2016 season. 

“[We’re] extra snug with the consistency and the hassle that I do know we’ll deliver,” DeBoer mentioned. “It doesn’t imply that the whole lot is all the time excellent. We all know that. That’s going to return even with Week 1 right here. We’ll definitely get challenged. However I do really feel assured and that we’re going to have a response the place, in terms of gut-check time, these guys are going to dig in.”

Washington head coach Kalen DeBoer

Washington Huskies head coach Kalen DeBoer appears to be like on throughout the Valero Alamo Bowl recreation towards the Texas Longhorns on the Alamodome in San Antonio on Dec. 29, 2022. (Adam Davis/Icon Sportswire through Getty Photographs)


On the opposite aspect, Boise State isn’t any slouch, coming into the 2023 season as the favourite to win the Mountain West. 

“Having the chance to go on the highway within the opening week and play the No. 10 group within the nation, you don’t all the time get that,” Boise State coach Andy Avalos mentioned. “It requires quite a lot of preparation clearly, and focus and self-discipline.”

Working again George Holani returns for his senior season after speeding for 1,157 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2022. The Broncos averaged 196.4 yards on the bottom final season, twenty ninth within the nation. 

South Carolina vs. No. 21 North Carolina – 7:30 p.m. ET 

The Gamecocks are on the upswing and North Carolina has a Heisman-hopeful underneath middle, establishing a superb matchup in Charlotte. 

South Carolina went 8-5 in Shane Beamer’s second season in Columbia, beating No. 5 Tennessee and snapping a seven-game shedding streak to Clemson. 

South Carolina Gamecocks quarterback Spencer Rattler

Spencer Rattler of the South Carolina Gamecocks celebrates a landing throughout the recreation towards the Clemson Tigers at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, South Carolina, on Nov. 26, 2022. (Eakin Howard/Getty Photographs)

Quarterback Spencer Rattler returns for his senior season — his second with the Gamecocks — after throwing for 3,026 yards, 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 2022. South Carolina additionally obtained a giant increase with the return of broad receiver Antwane “Juice” Wells, who was fifth within the SEC in receiving yards. 


“Spencer’s play on the sphere will converse for itself,” Beamer mentioned. “Frankly, it’s fairly disappointing simply to see perhaps the dearth of respect on the skin. However once more, we fear about what we are able to management, and I’m excited for Spencer.”

The Gamecocks struggled mightily towards the run in 2022, permitting 192.4 yards per recreation on the bottom, second-worst within the SEC. 

For the Tar Heels, it’s all about quarterback Drake Maye, the reigning ACC Participant of the Yr. North Carolina ranked second within the ACC in yards per recreation (462.8) and third in scoring (34.4). 

North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Drake May runs against Oregon

North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Drake Maye runs the ball throughout the San Diego County Credit score Union Vacation Bowl recreation towards the Oregon Geese at Petco Park in San Diego on Dec. 28, 2022. (Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire through Getty Photographs)

The Tar Heels have a brand new offensive coordinator in Chip Lindsey, who takes over after Phil Longo took the job in Wisconsin. 

North Carolina went 9-5 in 2022 and performed Clemson within the ACC Championship recreation, however ended the yr on a four-game shedding streak. 

“It’s not a card I’m taking part in, it’s details,” coach Mack Brown mentioned forward of the sport. “We gained 9 video games and obtained much less respect than lots of people that gained lower than that due to the best way we completed. … You’ve obtained to win video games on this enterprise. It’s a bottom-line enterprise. When you don’t win, you don’t get credit score, and also you don’t deserve credit score. In order that’s simply the best way it’s.”

No. 8 Florida State vs. No. 5 LSU – Sunday 7:30 p.m. ET 

It’s the one top-25 matchup of the weekend and the primary top-10 matchup between the 2 faculties. 

Each Florida State and LSU are coming off of surprisingly good seasons, with the Tigers profitable 10 video games in Brian Kelly’s first yr as head coach, and the Seminoles profitable 10 video games in Mike Norvell’s third yr, the primary 10-win season since 2016.

Florida State Seminoles quarterback Jordan Travis during the Spring Game

Florida State Seminoles quarterback Jordan Travis throws a move throughout the Florida State Garnet & Gold Spring Showcase at Bobby Bowden Area at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Florida, on April 15, 2023. (David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire through Getty Photographs)

Final yr, Florida State gained a extremely entertaining recreation in Week 1, taking down LSU 24-23. 


The Seminoles went 10-3 final season, profitable their final six video games. Florida State’s offense returns 9 starters from the 2022 squad that was sixteenth in factors per recreation (36.1). 

LSU earned a visit to the SEC Championship Recreation final season and returns eight starters from the offense, together with quarterback Jayden Daniels. 

In his first season at LSU, Daniels threw for two,913 yards and 17 touchdowns, including 885 yards and 11 scores on the bottom. 

LSU Tigers head coach Brian Kelly after winning the Citrus Bowl

LSU Tigers head coach Brian Kelly appears to be like on after profitable the Cheez-It Citrus Bowl towards Purdue at Tenting World Stadium in Orlando, Florida, on Jan. 2, 2023. (Joe Petro/Icon Sportswire through Getty Photographs)

On the “Brian Kelly Present” on Thursday, the LSU coach was very assured earlier than the opening recreation of the season. 

“I feel we’re in a very good place in yr two,” Kelly mentioned. “Look, I’ll say that there are nonetheless some areas that have to be improved. We’re going to take 15 freshmen on this journey and 14 transfers. Practically 40% of this journey roster are going to go in a single day for the primary time with LSU. 

“And that’s not a disclaimer of any form. We’re going to go beat the heck out of Florida State”

Duke vs. No. 9 Clemson – Monday 8 p.m. ET 

Clemson is coming off a “disappointing” season regardless of going 11-3 and profitable one other ACC title in 2022. 

The quarterback place was a problem for all the season as DJ Uiagalelei struggled — Clemson was 66th in passing offense — finally transferring to Oregon State within the offseason. Freshman Cade Klubnik, a five-star recruit, appeared in 10 video games and was tabbed the starter shifting ahead after the ACC Championship Recreation. 

Dabo Swinney fired offensive coordinator Brandon Streeter, the primary time he’s fired an assistant coach since 2011, and employed Garrett Riley to proper the ship. 

Clemson's Dabo Swinney coaches against Tennessee

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney watches the gamers on the sphere earlier than the Capital One Orange Bowl recreation towards the Tennessee Volunteers on the Laborious Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida, on Dec. 30, 2022. (Doug Murray/Icon Sportswire through Getty Photographs)


Riley, the youthful brother of USC head coach Lincoln Riley, led the ninth-best scoring offense throughout the 2022 faculty soccer season and was named the Broyles Award winner, given to the highest assistant in faculty soccer. 

Clemson returns seven starters on offense, together with operating again Will Shipley, Jr., who ran for 1,182 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2022. 

Duke went 9-4 in Mike Elko’s first season as head coach and returns dual-threat quarterback Riley Leonard, who helped the Blue Devils to the fifth-best scoring offense within the ACC in 2022 (32.8). 

The Related Press contributed to this report

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