Spring football in college is a tradition that’s been around for decades. The first game of the season is often referred to as “the opening game” and become an exciting spectacle, with traditions like marching bands playing songs from their respective schools and large crowds cheering on their alma mater. While most spring games are played at stadiums or other open-air fields, some schools have opted to hold them outdoors in warmer climates where it can be held without having to rely on artificial heating sources.
The “spring games 2022 schedule” is a list of all the college football spring games for the years 2022. Read more in detail here: the spring games 2022 schedule.
7 a.m. ET
The last large batch of college football spring games for 2022 will provide our first glimpse of the coaching carousel’s tectonic adjustments this offseason.
This weekend, Lincoln Riley of USC, Brian Kelly of LSU, Marcus Freeman of Notre Dame, Dan Lanning of Oregon, and Brent Venables of Oklahoma all make their on-field debuts at their respective schools.
We’ll also get a look at other notable quarterbacks who have transferred to new schools, including Caleb Williams of USC, Dillon Gabriel of Oklahoma, and Cameron Ward of Washington State.
The major stories we’ll be monitoring during this weekend’s games are listed below.
ESPN+, 1 p.m. ET, Baylor
What can we anticipate from Dave Aranda’s third season?
What was the difference between Baylor’s 2-7 season in 2020 and their 12-2 season in 2021, when they won the Big 12? Aranda shuffled his offensive staff, reverting Abram Smith to running back following a conversion to linebacker, and Smith racked up nine 100-yard games and established the single-season school rushing record with 1,621 yards. However, Smith and another important back, Tristan Ebner (859 rushing yards, 284 receiving yards), are no longer with the team. The Bears have two capable quarterbacks vying for the job: Gerry Bohanon (12 starts, 2,200 yards, 18 touchdowns passing, nine rushing) and Blake Shapen (two starts, 17 straight completions against Oklahoma State’s stingy defense in the Big 12 title game), so it’ll be interesting to see how this one plays out. Dave Wilson is an author.
Colorado 3 p.m. Eastern Time
Will the Colorado offense start to come alive?
Only one of the 130 FBS teams had a worse offense than the Buffs last season. It’s a little wonder they won four games averaging just 18.8 points and 257.4 yards per game. Mike Sanford was appointed as the new offensive coordinator, as well as a new offensive line coach (Kyle DeVan), a new wide receivers coach (Phil McGeoghan), and a new tight ends coach (Kyle DeVan) (Clay Patterson). Colorado has quarterback Brendon Lewis back, but it also has Houston transfer Maddox Kopp as a backup option. The spring game on Saturday will be their first chance to prove that this season can be different on that side of the ball. Paolo Uggetti (Paolo Uggetti)
SEC Network+, LSU, 2 p.m. ET
Sorting through a crowded QB field
Brian Kelly has a lot of work to do in order to get the Tigers’ roster backfilled after the flood of transfers that hit when Ed Orgeron was fired. But there’s one area where he’s got numerous options: quarterback. Yes, former starter Max Johnson is now at Texas A&M, and losing anyone with that much experience isn’t ideal. But Kelly was able to keep talented freshman Garrett Nussmeier and pulled former starter Myles Brennan back after he’d entered the transfer portal. Then Kelly got former Arizona State starter Jayden Daniels late in the cycle. The only problem is how to divide the reps among three QBs who see themselves as starters. Saturday’s spring game should provide a glimpse in the pecking order. — Alex Scarborough
Notre Dame vs. Peacock, 1 p.m. ET
SoonerSports.TV, 4 p.m. ET, Oklahoma
What do you think about Dillon Gabriel’s appearance?
After losing Mario Williams and Spencer Rattler to the transfer portal, Brent Venables’ first season as head coach in Norman will be heavily reliant on another transfer: Dillon Gabriel, who was formerly at UCF. Gabriel passed for 8,037 yards and 70 touchdowns over three seasons in Orlando, two of which were under tempo king Josh Heupel. Gabriel threw for 8,037 yards and 70 touchdowns over three seasons in Orlando, two of which were under tempo king Josh Heupel. If he can play at the level most expect him to, and if he can form a solid bond with Marvin Mims and the rest of a young OU receiving corps, the Sooners should be regarded the Big 12’s favorite once again. Gabriel will take center stage on Saturday, although for a short time. — Sean Connelly
Oklahoma State vs. Oklahoma State @ 2 p.m. ET
We’re on the lookout for some defensive playmakers.
OSU and head coach Mike Gundy are in the midst of a rebuild after an astounding 12-win season and the program’s first top-10 finish in a decade. The offense has some experience, but the defense was the key to the Pokes’ success last season, and they’re losing not just defensive coordinator Jim Knowles, but also two sure-handed linebackers and four-fifths of a strong secondary. New Washington, D.C. Derek Mason will rely on a potentially terrific offensive line — ends Tyler Lacy, Brock Martin, and Collin Oliver are all among the league’s finest — linebackers Mason Cobb and Kamryn Farrar, and cornerback Jabbar Muhammad and Korie Black are all filling large shoes. Making a huge play or two on Saturday (in what will clearly be more of a normal practice than a spring scrimmage) may allay some fears moving into the summer. — Connelly
SEC Network+, 1 p.m. ET, Ole Miss
Who is the Portal King?
When predicting what Ole Miss’ offensive might look like in 2022 back in late November, things seemed dismal. Starting quarterback Matt Corral, wide receiver Dontario Drummond, and running backs Snoop Conner and Jerrion Ealy were all headed to the NFL. Coach Lane Kiffin, dubbed the “Portal King,” then went all-in on the transfer market, bringing in former TCU standout running back Zach Evans and a slew of former Power 5 pass catchers in Michael Trigg (USC), J.J. Pegues (Auburn), Malik Heath (Mississippi State), and Jordan Watkins (Mississippi State) (Louisville). Jaxson Dart, the previous No. 2-ranked pocket quarterback in the 2021 class who threw nine touchdowns as a true freshman at USC last season, was the cherry on top. With so many new faces, there will undoubtedly be a stiff learning curve, but the ability to produce another top-flight offense is undeniable. — Scarborough
Pac-12 Networks, 4 p.m. ET, Oregon
What will Dan Lanning’s first spring game look like for Oregon?
There will be a lot of firsts in Eugene on Saturday, much like at USC with Lincoln Riley. It will be the first time Oregon supporters will see the coach they hope will not leave them for another job, as the last two have done. Former Auburn quarterback Bo Nix, who, like Lanning, departed the SEC for the West Coast, will play for the Ducks for the first time. It will also be the first time Autzen Stadium sees highly rated redshirt freshman quarterback Ty Thompson, who has been getting first-team repetitions. Lanning comes to the position with an SEC background and a recruiting reputation that landed him the job. But he’s also a first-year head coach with large shoes to fill, outstanding players to replace, notably Kayvon Thibodeaux, and concerns to answer about how he’ll run a football program that refuses to regress. Uggetti –
Big Ten Network, Penn State, 2 p.m.
Is it possible for Penn State to develop a running game?
Penn State finished the season with 40 throw touchdowns, 54 interceptions, 115 total rushing yards, and 117 rushing touchdowns. The offense’s run game has been a struggle, as running backs Noah Cain, who moved to LSU, and John Lovett, who has no eligibility remaining, have both left the team. Keyvone Lee, the team’s leading rusher, is back, and the coaches added ESPN 300 running backs Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen, who should also have a chance to play this season. To replace some of the key departures from 2021, Penn State will need to rediscover offensive consistency and playmakers. VanHaaren (VanHaaren)
TCU vs. TCU, ESPN+, Friday, 8 p.m. ET
Will it be Chandler Morris or Max Duggan?
Sonny Dykes moved from SMU’s Group of 5 to a Power 5 job by moving across the Metroplex from Dallas to Fort Worth, and his strategy will be similar to what he used to help the Mustangs reach new heights: recruit in their backyard, be a home for players looking to return to Texas, and play a fun brand of football. Max Duggan (10 starts last season, 2,048 yards, 16 touchdowns, 6 interceptions) and Chandler Morris (461 yards passing, 70 running in first career start versus Baylor last season) are both back. The renowned 4-2-5 defense of Gary Patterson is gone, and new coordinator Joe Gillespie, who excelled at Tulsa, has established a 3-3-5 defensive that the Frogs hope can shore up a unit that allowed 34.9 points per game during last year’s 5-7 season. Wilson’s words
Texas, Longhorn Network, 7 p.m. ET
Quinn Ewers is the center of attention.
Fans will be concerned about Texas’ defense this season, as former TCU coach Gary Patterson joined the Longhorns as a special assistant this summer after the Longhorns finished 100th nationally in 2021. However, this is a spring game, and fans will be interested to see how Steve Sarkisian’s offense looks in the second season. Bijan Robinson returns after a season-ending injury, while transfer Isaiah Neyor (878 yards, 12 touchdowns on 20.0 yards per catch last year at Wyoming) joins breakout freshman star Xavier Worthy at wide receiver. The quarterback fight between Ohio State transfer Quinn Ewers, one of the country’s best prospects coming out of high school, and Hudson Card, who won last year’s battle against Casey Thompson in the fall but only started two games, throwing for 590 yards, five touchdowns, and one interception. Wilson’s words
ESPN+, 1:30 p.m. ET, Texas Tech
Texas Tech receives a burst of energy.
New coach Joey McGuire has built excitement around the Red Raiders program, including a recruiting windfall that currently ranks among the best nationally. But there’s also reason for enthusiasm with the return of Zach Kittley, the offensive coordinator who began his coaching career as a volunteer assistant under Kliff Kingsbury before running some of the nation’s best offenses at Houston Baptist and Western Kentucky (535 yards per game last year, 63 passing TDs). The Red Raiders will put up points no matter who wins the quarterback race between Tyler Shough and Donovan Smith. But as always, the defense will be the key. New coordinator Tim DeRuyter, who has overseen defenses at Texas A&M, Cal and Oregon in recent years, plays an attacking 3-4 scheme that will get after quarterbacks, but can also give up big plays. On Saturday, we’ll see just how aggressive the Red Raiders look on both sides. — Wilson
Pac-12 Network, UCLA, Noon ET
Chip Kelly and Dorian Thompson-Robinson take to the track once again.
Thompson-Robinson has quarterbacked the Bruins for as long as Kelly has been their coach, excepting a few snaps, injuries, and games. The two are back this season, in the middle of what has been a rather poor stretch for UCLA football, and the glimpses they’ve offered are enticing enough to make you wonder whether they can do more than they have since 2018. They’ll rely on junior running back Zach Charbonnet for aid, but Thompson-Robinson will have to find new targets. Starting Saturday, there’s a lot to prove on the defensive side of the ball. Kelly has hired Bill McGovern, a former NFL defensive coordinator, as his new defensive coordinator. The former New York Giants linebackers coach is one of a number of new appointments Kelly hired to bolster his staff after a season in which he was on the verge of being fired. Uggetti –
ESPN, 3 p.m. ET, USC
Pac-12 Network, Utah, 2 p.m. ET
The Utes are Pac-12 favorites to defend their championship.
Utah is the only Pac-12 team with a greater than 0.1 percent chance of reaching the national championship game, according to ESPN’s FPI. They also have the highest chances of making the playoffs, with a 4.9 percent chance. All of this is to say that, even though the Utes lost some key starters on defense, including the dynamic Britain Covey, and a few key offensive linemen, the team’s return, not just in terms of personnel but also in terms of culture and continuity (especially on offense), is enough to propel them to the top of the conference. Kyle Whittingham said this week that the spring game would be used to get a lot of new players repetitions as the team works to preserve what Utah had last season, which included a top-30 defense and the most complete offense in the league. “It’s amazing to watch how the players who haven’t spent much time at this level respond,” Whittingham said. Uggetti –
ACC Network, 4 p.m. ET, Virginia
What will the offensive look like under new head coach Tony Elliott?
With 4,700 total yards a year ago, Brennan Armstrong was rated No. 2 in the country, and now that he’s back for another season, first-year coach Tony Elliott and offensive coordinator Des Kitchings realize the Cavaliers need to change their strategy to be more successful. That means relying less on Armstrong scurrying around to create plays and building the ground game with running backs. (Armstrong led the club in running last season with 98 carries and nine touchdowns.) Because Virginia is down to two scholarship running backs due to injury, and the offensive line is a work in progress with new starters across the board, we may not get many answers in the spring game. Armstrong, on the other hand, has improved as a passer, and with a good and deep receiving corps back, developing a consistent and productive running game will benefit not just Armstrong but the whole offense. Andrea Adelson’s remark
Pac-12 Network, 6 p.m. ET, Washington State
Cameron Ward, what will you do for Wazzu?
Jake Dickert’s first season as Washington State’s full-time head coach offers one of the most intriguing aspects of a college football program: a quarterback with some name recognition. Cameron Ward returns to Wazzu from Incarnate Word, where he and new offensive coordinator Eric Morris set records and starred in highlight films. Ward has already impressed during the Cougars’ spring workouts, but Saturday will be the first time his entire potential will be shown. There’s still a lot of work to be done for Washington State to properly recover from last season’s ups and downs, but maintaining Dickert and bringing Ward to Pullman (with the assistance of a NIL) has been a significant step toward restoring the program’s optimistic perspective. Uggetti –
ESPN+, 2 p.m. ET, West Virginia
What do you think of the secondary?
The greatest piece of off-field news for West Virginia this spring came when Georgia transfer quarterback JT Daniels chose Morgantown as his new home for the fall. However, since he hasn’t signed yet and won’t be on the field on Saturday, we may not get a fair picture of the Mountaineers’ offense. However, we may begin to understand about the defense: While the front six has a lot of experience, the secondary has lost six of last year’s top seven players due to attrition. Veteran cornerback Charles Woods, redshirt freshman Aubrey Burks and Andrew Wilson-Lamp, and redshirt sophomores Aubrey Burks and Andrew Wilson-Lamp are among those who will be expected to take on important responsibilities this fall, and Saturday would be a terrific opportunity for them to do so. — Sean Connelly
The “michigan football spring game 2022” is a college football spring game that will be taking place on April 27th, 2022. The game will take place at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
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