ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 03: A general view of play between the Oregon Ducks and the LSU Tigers at Cowboys Stadium on September 3, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
The DFW metroplex will be at the center of the college football universe, with Michigan-Alabama at Jerryworld, Texas-OU at the Cotton Bowl and TCU hosting a full slate of Big 12 games at Amon Carter Stadium.
A week-by-week look at the college football games taking place in the Metroplex in 2012. There's a lot to be excited about folks.
09/01 -- Michigan vs. Alabama (Jerryworld): In what is hopefully becoming an annual tradition, Jerryworld opens 2012 with the biggest non-conference game of the year. If Denard Robinson can find some holes in the Crimson Tide defense, he could be an early front-runner for the Heisman.
09/15 -- SMU vs. Texas A&M: The Aggies aren't playing Arkansas in Dallas this year, but they'll still give their fans in the Metroplex a chance to see them up close with a game at Gerald (not the President) Ford stadium. Texas A&M is breaking in a first-year coach and QB, so it could be June Jones best chance to pull an upset that would raise eyebrows nationally.
09/29 -- TCU vs. SMU: The Mustangs get their first look at the Horned Frogs new digs, another reminder of how much the tables have turned in this rivalry. It may not register nationally, but there's no love lost between these two:
"All we've ever tried to do here at TCU is help SMU," Patterson said. "We've bent over backwards to make sure they've improved their program because I believe that's what you do. We've let them come over and talk about how we do things academically, how we do things with the stadium, how we do everything to try to help them make their program better. Their way of thanking us for that is to cut us down. I don't think they should look for any more from help anybody over here ever again. They're getting no help from Gary Patterson."
"The SMU people had been looking down at TCU for a long time over here," Patterson said. "The older group of alumni around here have a certain feeling about SMU. I didn't have that feeling. But I'm getting it."
10/06 -- Grambling vs. Prairie View A&M (Cotton Bowl): I don't know anything about these two schools football teams, but I know this is a big deal.
10/13 -- Texas vs. OU (Cotton Bowl): What more needs to be said? If I could choose one sporting event to go to every year, I would choose this one.
10/20 -- TCU vs. Texas Tech: One of the great benefits of the Horned Frogs joining the Big 12 is all the big schools who will be making one more annual trip through the area. From what I hear, Tech fans are heavy on the ground in Fort Worth.
11/03 -- UNT vs. Arkansas State: I got a glimpse of the Mean Green's new football stadium driving up I-35 and it is nice. That is a state-of-the-art looking facility, and it's a jarring contrast between their new home and their old, which is still standing on the other side of the highway. Sun Belt teams don't exactly have a very high Q rating, but Arkansas State does have a new head coach in former Auburn coordinator Gus Malzahn, an offensive wizard at every place he's been.
11/10 -- TCU vs. Kansas State: Can Gary Patterson's program handle a BCS conference schedule? Can Bill Snyder's wizardry continue for another year? We should know a lot more about these two teams by this point in the season.
11/24 -- Texas Tech vs. Baylor (Cowboys Stadium): It's not quite Texas-OU, but it's a cute little tradition. This could be a battle for bowl eligibility.
12/01 -- TCU vs. OU: There's a possibility that the Sooners come into this game playing for a chance at the national title.