Get ready to tailgate: A dream road trip to see every AP Top 25 team this season

AP’s Ultimate College Football Odyssey: A Roadmap of Gridiron Glory

As college football season gears up for another exhilarating ride, the Associated Press embarks on its signature dream college football road trip – a whirlwind journey that threads through the nation’s most iconic stadiums, thrilling matchups, and storied rivalries. Buckle up as we unveil the meticulously curated itinerary that promises to deliver a gridiron experience like no other.

Setting the Rules

Before the kickoff echoes through packed stadiums, two essential rules dictate our course. First, every team in the AP’s preseason Top 25 must be seen in action at least once. Second, the travel between games must be logistically sensible, ensuring a balance between football fervor and practicality. From coast to coast, these rules guide us through the compelling tapestry of college football.

Touchdown 1: Notre Dame vs. Navy (Aug. 26)

Our voyage commences in Dublin, Ireland, where the heart-pounding clash between Notre Dame and Navy unfolds. A historical opener that marks the arrival of new coaching dynamics, this game encapsulates the sport’s global reach.

TCU vs. Colorado: Deion’s Debut (Sept. 2)

Jet lag is shrugged off as Deion Sanders’ inaugural game as Colorado’s coach unfolds against TCU. A formidable kickoff that thrusts us into the heart of Week 1 action.

LSU vs. Florida State: Showdown in Orlando (Sept. 3)

With jet-set precision, we traverse from Texas to Florida to witness a monumental clash between LSU and Florida State. A marquee showdown, this night game promises gridiron brilliance.

Clemson vs. Duke: A Drive to Remember (Sept. 4)

The journey takes us from nightfall to another night game as we catch Clemson taking on Duke. A long drive is a small price for the spectacle that awaits.

Alabama vs. Texas: A Clash of Titans (Sept. 9)

As the football gods decree, Alabama and Texas collide in a non-conference matchup that radiates novelty and anticipation.

North Carolina vs. Minnesota: Clash of Titans (Sept. 16)

A showdown between North Carolina and Minnesota sets the stage for early-season fireworks, a testament to the sport’s captivating unpredictability.

Wisconsin at Purdue: A Glimpse into Fickell’s Reign (Sept. 22)

Wisconsin’s new chapter, guided by Luke Fickell, unfolds against Purdue. A peek into the changing landscape of college football.

Penn State vs. Iowa: Whiteout Magic (Sept. 23)

Under the lights, Penn State and Iowa ignite Happy Valley in a whiteout spectacle that embodies the electric essence of the sport.

Tulane vs. UAB: Green Wave Glory (Sept. 30)

The journey leads us to Tulane, a rising star in the Top 25. A clash with UAB promises to showcase their mettle.

Alabama vs. Texas A&M: Spat Rekindled (Oct. 7)

The heated exchange between Saban and Fisher adds fervor to Alabama’s faceoff against Texas A&M.

Washington vs. Oregon: Northwest Showdown (Oct. 14)

A timeless rivalry unfolds in the Pacific Northwest, pitting Washington against Oregon in a picturesque setting.

USC vs. Utah: Unfinished Business (Oct. 21)

USC seeks redemption against Utah, a rematch brimming with intensity and a score to settle.

Kansas State vs. Houston: Novel Encounter (Oct. 28)

Kansas State and Houston meet for the first time on the gridiron, a historic clash amidst realignment winds.

Bedlam: Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State (Nov. 4)

Awkwardness ensues as conference-bound teams meet, culminating in the storied Bedlam rivalry.

Oregon State vs. Stanford: Uncertain Futures (Nov. 11)

Amidst the shifting landscape, Oregon State’s potential and Stanford’s trajectory beckon scrutiny.

Georgia vs. Tennessee: A Championship Pursuit (Nov. 18)

Georgia faces a formidable test in Neyland Stadium, a game that might define their championship aspirations.

Mississippi Showdown: Egg Bowl (Nov. 23)

Thanksgiving night treats us to the electrifying Egg Bowl, a display of offensive prowess.

The Grand Finale: Michigan vs. Ohio State (Nov. 25)

The age-old rivalry between Michigan and Ohio State concludes our odyssey with a flourish, epitomizing the essence of college football.

From Dublin’s opening spectacle to the Michigan-Ohio State climax, this college football journey transcends stadiums, transcends geography, and captures the beating heart of a nation united by the love of the game.


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