Circle Sept 3 on your calendar for LSU at Oregon … A Duck win and it’s clear sailing to the national title game with only a Nov 12 road trip to Stanford blocking their path. No team in the Pac-12 South can match up with the Quackers in the inaugural conference championship. Conversely, a win by LSU means a lot, but they’ll still need to get past West Virginia on the road and then the SEC’s three A’s – Alabama, Auburn and Arkansas.

2011 Key Regular Season Showdowns By Conference …

SEC: LSU at Alabama, Nov 5 and South Carolina at Arkansas, Nov 5

Big Ten: Nebraska at Wisconsin, Oct 1 and Iowa at Nebraska, Nov 25

Pac-12: Arizona State at Oregon, Oct 15 and Oregon at Stanford, Nov 12

Big XII: Oklahoma State at Texas A&M, Sept 24 and Oklahoma at Oklahoma State, Dec 3

ACC: Miami at Florida State, Nov 5 and North Carolina at Virginia Tech, Nov 17

Big East: Pitt at West Virginia, Nov 25

Independents: USC at Notre Dame, Oct 22; ND at Stanford, Nov 26; BYU at Texas, Sept 10; BYU at TCU, Oct 28

MWC: TCU at Boise State, Nov 12 and Boise State at San Diego State, Nov 19

WAC: Fresno State at Hawaii, Nov 19

CUSA: UCF at East Carolina, Nov 19 and Houston at Tulsa, Nov 26

MAC: Northern Illinois at Toledo, Nov 1 and Miami (Ohio) at Temple, Nov 9

Sun Belt: Troy at Florida International, Oct 25