After a bunch of headliner games last week ("Monster Saturday!") that didn't really turn out to be all that great, this week is filled to the brim with a heaping helping of boring. Hopefully any of your friends inconsiderate enough to get married during the fall chose this weekend to do so. I seriously had a tough time finding five games to even semi-care about beyond the fact that, well, football's on and that means I'm watching. All times listed are central and rankings are from the USA Today poll until the BCS rankings are released later in the season.
ARKANSAS (13) at GEORGIA
Saturday, September 18th - 11:00 a.m. - ESPN
OTS gave you quite a few reasons yesterday to tune into this one in his piece on why our winning our game against Arkansas is so critical. There's no need to replicate what's already be said, so I'll just pull an essential quote in case you missed it:
Consider this...if Arkansas beats Georgia next week, they move to 1-0 in conference play. No big deal in and of itself. But if they can beat Alabama the following weekend, the Hogs are 2-0 and it's a completely different outlook. That would give Arkansas the head-to-head tiebreaker over Alabama, it would give Alabama a divisional loss (another key factor in tiebreakers), and with Alabama and Georgia added as wins to the resume, suddenly the rest of the schedule sets up nicely for the Hogs with two of its toughest games already added to the win column.
FLORIDA (7) at TENNESSEE
Saturday, September 18th - 2:30 p.m. - CBS
Some spectacular bed-crapping last week (here's looking at you Georgia Tech and Florida State) made some of this week's contests lose their luster rather quickly, so here we are with Florida at Tennessee. Tennessee, as expected, was completely dismantled and exposed by Oregon. Florida, on the other hand has struggled greatly against the likes of Miami (Ohio) and USF. Sure, both games were won by more than a 3 TD margin, but I think you'd be hard pressed to find anyone in Gatorland that feeling really great about the team right now. Despite winning, they've slipped a bit in the polls each week and you've got to think something's going to click at some point and they're going to turn into their normal juggernaut selves. Considering the Gators come calling to Tuscaloosa in a few weeks, I'm tuning in to see what kind of progress is being made.
CLEMSON at AUBURN (15)
Saturday, September 18th - 6:00 p.m. - ESPN/ESPN 3D
Tigers vs. Teagles. Auburn with a Lake vs. Auburn. Horrifically ugly jerseys vs. a different set of horrifically ugly jerseys...and neither of them utilize an orange that you can sit with. Clemson is on the edge of the Top 25 (currently at 26) after beating North Texas and Presbyterian in the opening weeks of the season. For those of you were wondering, Lee Ziemba will be back for the game. It probably won't be that great of a game, but at least we can cheer on Dabo Swinney.
TEXAS (4) at TEXAS TECH
Saturday, September 18th - 7:00 p.m. - ABC/ESPN2
Jones AT&T Stadium
How much does the college football world miss Mike Leach? Seriously. All the pirate talk is gone, no more references to fat little girlfriends, no more incredibly NSFW post-win meltdowns, no more epic dating advice (1 - 2), etc. I also think of this awesome video every time I think of Texas Tech (Go Raiders!) and that doesn't even get us started on mildly NSFW bell-ringing videos (1 - 2) Texas Tech, once the home of college football YouTube gold, now has Wing-nut behind the wheel and the offense and comedy are sure to be more vanilla. Texas Tech has gotten a handful or two of votes in the various polls and though they're unranked, you've got to imagine this will be the stiffest challenge Texas has faced this year. Here's hoping for points, points, and more points.
IOWA (10) at ARIZONA (18)
Saturday, September 18th - 9:30 p.m. - ESPN
What kind of crazy world are we living in when Iowa at Arizona is the marquee match-up of the week? So far, both of these teams have played a whole lot of nobody (Toledo and The Citadel for Arizona,
Rice and Wyoming in Texas' case Eastern Illinois and Iowa St. in Iowa's case.) Needless to say, this will be the first real test for either team and a good way for you to wind down a long day of football watching.