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Top 25 Preview Capsules
No. 1 Alabama (1-0) vs. Western Kentucky (1-0), 3:30 p.m. (SEC Network)
Line: Alabama by 40.
Series record: Alabama leads 1-0.
WHAT’S AT STAKE
Alabama wants to take care of business, stay healthy for next week’s showdown at No. 8 Arkansas and get some youngsters more experience. Western Kentucky of the Sun Belt Conference would love to shock the college football world, or at least make a respectable showing.
Alabama’s experienced offensive line outweighs the Hilltoppers’ defensive front by an average of 45 pounds. The Crimson Tide’s deep backfield should have some nice holes to run through.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Alabama: RB T.J. Yeldon. The hard-to-tackle freshman debuted with 111 yards against Michigan and was MVP of the spring game. With Eddie Lacy still nursing an ankle injury, Yeldon could be in line for another big game.
Western Kentucky: QB Kawaun Jakes. Jakes passed for a career-high 296 yards _ 276 by halftime _ and four touchdowns in a rout of Austin Peay. He’s in his fourth year as starter and faces a talented secondary that gave up little beyond two long touchdown passes in the opener against Michigan’s Denard Robinson.
FACTS & FIGURES
After beating No. 19 Michigan 41-14, Alabama vaulted over Southern California into No. 1 in the AP Top 25. It’s the 47th time that the Crimson Tide has topped the rankings and 16th under coach Nick Saban. … Western Kentucky has faced one defending BCS national champion, losing at No. 1 Florida 49-3 to open the 2007 season during its first season of transition to the Football Bowl Subdivision. The Hilltoppers also faced No. 1 LSU last November and trailed 14-7 at halftime before falling 42-9. … The Hilltoppers’ 596 yards against Austin Peay was the team’s best total since gaining 620 against West Virginia Tech on Sept. 1, 2005.
No. 2 Southern California (1-0) vs. Syracuse (0-1), at East Rutherford, N.J., 3:30 p.m. (ABC/ESPN2)
Line: USC by 26.
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