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Ten things to watch for in Week 11

Conference championship. BCS busters. Coaches on the hot seat.

This weekend's college football schedule has it all, including a Big Ten showdown between Iowa and Ohio State that will decide which team goes to the Rose Bowl.

But the spotlight will be on Fort Worth, Texas, where No. 4 TCU will try to remain unbeaten and in the BCS national championship race. The Horned Frogs play last season's BCS buster, Utah, which went unbeaten and upset Alabama in the Sugar Bowl in 2008.

Here are 10 things to watch on Saturday:

1. Can TCU stay undefeated?

The No. 4 Horned Frogs are three victories away from finishing unbeaten and securing a BCS bowl bid. But Saturday's home game against No. 16 Utah is a major test.

TCU is 1-5 against the Utes, including a 13-10 loss in Salt Lake City last season, in which the Utes scored the winning touchdown with 48 seconds left to play.

TCU hasn't lost since. After playing Utah, the Horned Frogs play at struggling Wyoming and host winless New Mexico, so the Utes appear to be TCU's last remaining obstacle.

2. Is this Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis' last stand?

It might be after the Fighting Irish were knocked out of a BCS bowl game by losing to Navy for the second time in three seasons. At 6-3, Notre Dame might need to win its next three games -- at No. 12 Pittsburgh, home against Connecticut and at Stanford -- to take the heat off Weis.

It won't be easy against Pittsburgh, which still has a chance to win the Big East championship. The Panthers lead the country with 39 sacks, and the Irish have had problems protecting quarterback Jimmy Clausen. Notre Dame's defense has also yielded too many big pass plays, so much-improved Panthers quarterback Bill Stull could have a big night.

3. Which team will win the Big Ten championship?

The Big Ten championship -- and a trip to the Rose Bowl -- will be on the line when No. 10 Iowa plays at No. 11 Ohio State on Saturday. The Buckeyes will be big favorites, after the Hawkeyes lost quarterback Ricky Stanzi to a badly sprained ankle in last week's 17-10 loss to Northwestern.

Iowa freshman James Vandenberg, who had played only one series in Iowa's first nine games, looked uncomfortable against the Wildcats. It won't be any easier against Ohio State, which has the country's No. 6-ranked defense.

4. Can Stanford do it again?

The last time the Cardinal played at USC, they stunned the Trojans as a 41-point underdog. Stanford is coming off an upset of Oregon, and it could be argued it has a better team than USC this season.

But Pete Carroll has never lost in 28 games in November as USC's coach, and the Trojans have won 12 consecutive contests at the Coliseum. But USC will have to slow down Cardinal quarterback Andrew Luck, the Pac-10's most efficient passer, and tailback Toby Gerhart, the country's No. 2 rusher.

5. Should Florida be concerned about facing the Ole' Ball Coach?

South Carolina appears headed to another late-season swoon, but Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier would probably like nothing more than to knock off his alma mater.

South Carolina's defensive line is very good when healthy, and the Gators have struggled to protect star quarterback Tim Tebow. He has been sacked a career-high 21 times, including 15 times in the last four games.

6. Can Mississippi State beat No. 2 Alabama?

Only if the Crimson Tide are flat after their physical 24-15 victory over LSU last week. Mississippi State actually beat the Tide in two out of the last three seasons, so the Bulldogs should have Alabama's undivided attention.

The Bulldogs have moved the ball on just about everybody during coach Dan Mullen's first season. Four of State's five losses came against teams that are currently in the BCS standings: No. 1 Florida, No. 7 Georgia Tech, No. 8 LSU and No. 15 Houston. The Bulldogs lost to each of those ranked foes by 11 points or fewer.

7. What does Boise State have to do to earn a BCS bowl bid?

The No. 6 Broncos needed to play better than they did in last week's 45-35 win over Louisiana Tech, especially on defense. Boise State shouldn't have much trouble with Idaho, which has lost 10 games in a row against the Broncos. Boise State averaged 64.3 points in its last three games against the Vandals at Bronco Stadium.

The Vandals have cooled off considerably after winning five games in a row. They've lost two of their last three games and might not have starting quarterback Nate Enderle for the second consecutive game because of an injured rotator cuff. Idaho has allowed 135 points in its last three games.

8. Will Georgia Tech win the ACC's Coastal Division?

The No. 7 Yellow Jackets are playing as well as any team in the country on offense, averaging 377.6 rushing yards in their last five games. They needed a fourth-down conversion to beat Wake Forest last week, but they've owned Duke recently, winning five games in a row.

Duke quarterback Thaddeus Lewis is capable of having a big game against Tech's defense, which ranks 10th in the ACC in pass defense. But Lewis is coming off his worst performance of the season, throwing for only 113 yards with an interception in last week's 19-6 loss to North Carolina. Lewis had thrown for more than 300 yards in each of the four previous games.

9. What's an under-the-radar game to watch?

Nevada is the country's top-rated rushing team, averaging 319.1 yards per game. Fresno State has the country's leading rusher in junior Ryan Mathews, who is averaging 162.1 yards per game.

After losing three games in a row to start the season, the Wolf Pack has won six in a row. In last week's 62-7 rout at San Jose State, Nevada had four 100-yard rushers. It became the first team since Nebraska in 2001 and only the fifth in NCAA history to accomplish that feat.

The Bulldogs have won five games in a row after starting 1-3. Both teams will try to keep pace with Boise State in the WAC race.

10. Which traditional powers could really use victories this weekend?

Michigan is 5-5 after losing to Illinois and Purdue in consecutive weeks and has to win one of its final two games to avoid missing the postseason for the second straight season. The Wolverines play at Wisconsin Saturday and then host Ohio State Nov. 21.

Georgia still needs another victory to qualify for a bowl game, too. The Bulldogs host Auburn on Saturday night, then play Kentucky at home before closing the regular season at Georgia Tech Nov. 28. Florida State needs to win two of its last three games to qualify for a 28th consecutive bowl game. The Seminoles play at Wake Forest Saturday, host Maryland Nov. 21 and play at No. 1 Florida Nov. 28. FSU won't have star quarterback Christian Ponder, who is out for the rest of the regular season with a shoulder injury.