The 2023 season has finally arrived, college football fans, and Week 0 is underway. After a long offseason of transfer portal movement, conference realignment and coaching changes at major programs across the country, we are now ready for toe to meet leather and to talk about actual games being played on actual fields Saturday from Ireland to Los Angeles.
Week 0 may be a diet version of Week 1, but there are nevertheless some intriguing games to watch. No. 13 Notre Dame will take on Navy across the pond in Dublin, Ireland, in the first game of the season. The Fighting Irish aren't College Football Playoff contenders according to most pundits, but a strong showing in Week 0 could change those opinions if coach Marcus Freeman lights up the Midshipmen on a highly visible, unopposed stage.
No. 6 USC will get its season cranked up Saturday night in Los Angeles when it hosts San Jose State out of the Mountain West. The Trojans, led by last year's Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Caleb Williams, was on the brink of the CFP last season before losing the Pac-12 Championship Game to Utah. Can they get over the hump this year? We will get to see the beginning of that quest on Saturday night.
It'll be a great day of college football from Saturday afternoon through midnight. Here's a viewer's guide to help you navigate through the action.
All times Eastern
The best games
No. 13 Notre Dame vs. Navy (in Dublin, Ireland) -- 2:30 p.m. on NBC, fuboTV (try for free): Quarterback Sam Hartman transferred to the Fighting Irish after a wildly successful career at Wake Forest. Is he the missing piece to their CFP puzzle? Maybe. It'll be fascinating to see if second-year coach Marcus Freeman lets his Heisman Trophy hopeful loose knowing that his game on network television is being broadcast unopposed from other games on Week 0 for the majority of the afternoon.
UTEP at Jacksonville State -- 5:30 p.m. on CBS Sports Network, CBSSports.com, CBS Sports App (Free): Jacksonville State's first game as an FBS program should be wild. The passionate fanbase has been waiting decades for this moment, so it's fair to assume that Gamecocks coach Rich Rodriguez will have plenty of offensive tricks up his sleeve. Meanwhile, the Miners would love to get the season started with a big Conference USA win.
Hawaii at Vanderbilt -- 7:30 p.m. on SEC Network, fuboTV (try for free): The Commodores will be the first SEC team to get things going when they host the Rainbow Warriors under the lights. The 'Dores closed last season strong with conference wins over Kentucky and Florida -- the first two conference wins of the Clark Lea era in Nashville. The hope is that the momentum generated from those two wins will carry over and make Vanderbilt, at the very least, a tough matchup for other SEC foes.
San Jose State at No. 6 USC -- 8 p.m. on Pac-12 Network, fuboTV (try for free): Coach Lincoln Riley's Trojans have high hopes this season, and there's no doubt that Williams is the right man to lead them to ultimate glory. But can their defense take a step forward? That's what is going to make or break the season, and we will get a glimpse of that progress on Saturday night. The Trojans are squaring off against a Spartans offense that will undoubtedly make them work for it.
FIU at Louisiana Tech -- 9 p.m. on CBS Sports Network, CBSSports.com, CBS Sports App (Free): Louisiana Tech is an 11.5-point favorite over Panthers in the second of two Conference USA games in Week 0. Both teams finished 2-6 in conference play last season, so a win in the opener will go a long way toward calming the fears of their respective fanbases.