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WAKE UP! Week 11 College football viewing guide, why-to-watch, and open thread

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Alabama v Mississippi State Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images

Crunch time is upon the season, and the schedule sees the potential for an early bloodbath before we even get to the afternoon and primetime national games. This is the best end-to-end schedule I’ve seen all season.

Lot to get through this morning, so, dispensing with the preamble, here’s your schedule for the entire day — all times Eastern:

Untitled

Matchup Time (ET) TV Streaming
Matchup Time (ET) TV Streaming
#10 Ohio State at Michigan State 12:00 PM FOX FoxSportsGo.com
South Carolina at #11 Florida 12:00 PM ESPN WatchESPN.com
Navy at #12 UCF 12:00 PM ESPN2 WatchESPN.com
TCU at #13 West Virginia 12:00 PM FS1 FoxSportsGo.com
Wisconsin at #14 Penn State 12:00 PM ABC WatchESPN.com
Ole Miss at #20 Texas A&M 12:00 PM CBS CBSSports.com
Akron at Eastern Michigan 12:00 PM ESPN3 WatchESPN.com
Tulsa at Memphis 12:00 PM ESPNU WatchESPN.com
SMU at UConn 12:00 PM ESPN3 WatchESPN.com
Kansas at Kansas State 12:00 PM Fox Sports Net FoxSportsGo.com
BYU at UMass 12:00 PM Eleven/NESN UMassAthletics.com
Lafayette at Army 12:00 PM CBSSN CBSSports.com
Vanderbilt at Missouri 12:00 PM SEC Network WatchESPN.com
Illinois at Nebraska 12:00 PM BTN FoxSportsGo.com
Maryland at Indiana 12:00 PM BTN FoxSportsGo.com
North Carolina at Duke 12:20 PM ACC Network WatchESPN.com
Troy at Georgia Southern 1:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
North Texas at Old Dominion 2:00 PM ESPN3 WatchESPN.com
UCLA at Arizona State 2:00 PM Pac-12 Networks Pac-12.com
Charlotte at Marshall 2:30 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
Liberty at #25 Virginia 3:00 PM ACC Network WatchESPN.com
Middle Tennessee at UTEP 3:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
Bowling Green at Central Michigan 3:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
#18 Mississippi State at #1 Alabama 3:30 PM CBS CBSSports.com
#5 Michigan at Rutgers 3:30 PM BTN FoxSportsGo.com
Oklahoma State at #7 Oklahoma 3:30 PM ABC WatchESPN.com
#8 Washington State at Colorado 3:30 PM ESPN WatchESPN.com
#9 Kentucky at Tennessee 3:30 PM SEC Network WatchESPN.com
Northwestern at #16 Iowa 3:30 PM FOX FoxSportsGo.com
Baylor at #24 Iowa State 3:30 PM FS1 FoxSportsGo.com
New Mexico at Air Force 3:30 PM CBSSN CBSSports.com
Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh 3:30 PM ESPNU WatchESPN.com
Purdue at Minnesota 3:30 PM ESPN2 WatchESPN.com
San Jose State at Utah State 4:00 PM None Facebook
Appalachian State at Texas State 4:00 PM ESPN3 WatchESPN.com
East Carolina at Tulane 4:00 PM ESPNews WatchESPN.com
Western Kentucky at Florida Atlantic 5:00 PM Stadium WatchStadium.com
Arkansas State at Coastal Carolina 5:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
Georgia State at Louisiana 5:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
UL Monroe at South Alabama 5:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
Oregon at #15 Utah 5:30 PM Pac-12 Networks Pac-12.com
Auburn at #6 Georgia 7:00 PM ESPN WatchESPN.com
Miami at Georgia Tech 7:00 PM ESPN2 WatchESPN.com
Florida Intl at UTSA 7:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
Rice at Louisiana Tech 7:00 PM ESPN+ ESPN+
Temple at Houston 7:00 PM CBSSN CBSSports.com
South Florida at Cincinnati 7:00 PM ESPNU WatchESPN.com
#3 LSU at Arkansas 7:30 PM SEC Network WatchESPN.com
Florida State at #4 Notre Dame 7:30 PM NBC NBCSports.com
#17 Texas at Texas Tech 7:30 PM FOX FoxSportsGo.com
Southern Mississippi at UAB 7:30 PM beIN Sports beINSports.com
#2 Clemson at #22 Boston College 8:00 PM ABC WatchESPN.com
Oregon State at Stanford 9:00 PM Pac-12 Networks Pac-12.com
California at USC 10:30 PM ESPN WatchESPN.com
UNLV at San Diego State 10:30 PM ESPN2 WatchESPN.com
Colorado State at Nevada 10:30 PM ESPNU WatchESPN.com

AM Shift:

I don’t think you can in good conscience turn your back on any of the early ranked-vs-unranked games. But, pay particular attention to these:

No. 10 Ohio State travels to face a team they’ve had problems putting away lately, the Michigan State Spartans. Sparty has played a lot better down the stretch while the Bucks have looked worse in most weeks since Urban’s return. With UM looming for the Buckeyes, this isn’t one they can simply out-talent either.

I’m curious as to how No. 12 UCF’s war crime of a running defense will fare against the Navy Midshipmen. Navy’s secondary is appalling, but they can legitimately run for 700 yards today. This may be a shootout from hell. Navy is just 2-7, but the game is about matchups, ya’ know? And with USF and Cincinnati still on tap, UCF is finally being pressed.

I have no idea how three-loss Florida is still at No. 11, but they host South Carolina in the Swamp. If the Gators of the last three weeks show up, they’ll lose this one. Feliepe Franks is Nick Fitzgerald-bad. This game will probably be cringe-worthy viewing, especially with the other great noon eastern kicks.

Nebraska v Ohio State Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Wisconsin can legitimately win at No. 14 Penn State today — nothing about the Nittany Lion run defense inspires confidence. Then again, not much about the Badgers secondary does either. This one will probably come down to the PSU passing game and Penn State-versus-themselves. They’ll win one matchup, but that haven’t won the latter in three years.

Two of the worst SEC secondaries face off in College Station this morning when the Ole Miss Rebels face the No. 20 Texas A&M Aggies. The Ags are leaps better across both lines and can run the ball. That should settle the game in their favor — assuming Jimbo doesn’t commit coaching malpractice again.

Afternoon Shift:

I hate recommending a PAC12 game to you, but what if I told you the fighting Herms at Arizona State control their destiny the South? In an awful division, they are probably the second-best coached team. They’re also one of the least consistent. This is a must-win against UCLA.

BEDLAM: Oklahoma State can compete up front with the Sooners. This is the first competent and consistent pass rush OU has faced all year, so Kyler Murray’s numbers may take a hit today. One doubts the Pokes can match score for score, so they’ll need to play sound defense and take advantage of an OU secondary that is as generous as a ten-cent hooker on nickel night.

No. 18 Mississippi State at No. 1 Alabama, for obvious reasons. The Tide has tended to play like crap in the game historically. But, I don’t think we’ve seen an Alabama team this generally healthy and well-rested either: Playing one-half of 9 games has that effect. I have no idea where the Bulldogs are going to get their offense from, even if the defense morphs into the ‘85 Bears.

No. 9 Kentucky at Tennessee — the Wildcats can’t let the Bulldogs beat them twice in a row. Last week the ‘Cats never gave up the fight, but they still very much looked like Kentucky. The deficiencies were on display for all to see. Can the Vols exploit that secondary and shut down Benny in this bitter rivalry? The line is close for a reason.

Two games today will (mostly) decide Michigan’s dance partner in the BIGCG — Purdue travels to Minnesota. The Gophers can score in scads on bad defenses, and the Road Boilers are a bad defense. This isn’t one Purdue can overlook (man, I hate 2018 for making me type that.) The other of consequence is Western-leading Northwestern at No. 16 Iowa. I still have no idea why the Hawkeyes are this high. They’ve drubbed scrubs and lost to three quality teams. The Wildcats are a solid team, especially on defense. Purdue is rooting hard for the home Hawks.

The No. 7 Washington State Cougars have played with fire for six weeks, and it’s been glorious watching this team improbably march into the playoff rankings. They best get their heads right. Colorado’s wide receivers will test that secondary, and the altitude is always tough on visitors.

Oregon v Washington State Photo by William Mancebo/Getty Images

Evening Shift:

If you think you know what’s going to happen with the Oregon Ducks travel to No. 15 Utah, you’re lying. Utah was playing like an absolute machine for a month until getting blasted by ASU last week. The altitude will help them, but their wilting in the face of a passing offense and a billion blitzes inspired no confidence.

When Auburn goes between the Hedges tonight to meet the No. 6 Georgia Bulldogs, one gets the feeling Auburn Jesus will not be bestowing any miracles. This won’t be very competitive, but it will be hilarious. I hope UGA bites someone...again.

No. 6 LSU has their own hangover game, and it comes when they play for the Golden Boot: Arkansas traditionally takes their bye to watch LSU-Bama murder each other for four hours and then reaps the benefits a la Mississippi State. LSU should pulverize this team. But one simply doesn’t know how the Tigers will regroup, especially after Orgeron threw his team under the bus last week.

Let’s get weird in Lubbock: No. 17 Texas travels to face a team that really really hates them, the Texas Tech Red Raiders. You get the feeling the longhorns could run the Raiders off the field with a conservative ball control game plan. You also get the feeling that Tom Herman is too-clever-by-half to do the smart thing here. TTU has no quarterbacks and this will still probably be close.

No. 2 Clemson travels to face the No. 22 BC Eagles. The Eagles defense hasn’t been very good this year, and that bodes poorly. But, they do have an offense that when healthy has one of the nation’s best running backs and a pretty good passing game. The problem is, it’s not healthy. Clemson should be able run the ball 70 times and go home with a solid win.

I’m kind of looking forward to seeing Miami’s soft run defense play Bitter Paul Johnson’s Georgia Tech too. Mark Richt seems to have literally lost control of the Hurricanes and the quarterbacking may be the worst among the Big 3 Florida programs — and that says a whole lot.

Remember Catholics versus Convicts in 1993? Tonight’s FSU-No. 3 Notre Dame game won’t be that. It will be a surgical excision under the lights and the watchful gaze of Touchdown Jesus. Brian Kelly does unchristian things to the Seminoles tonight.

Today’s Unwatchable Filth...

There’s literally not one game on here that I couldn’t find a reason to watch or some angle that makes it interesting. But, if I were going to pick one, I’d go with BYU at UMass. The Cougars can’t score. The Minutemen can’t stop anyone from scoring. These two teams are just plain bad too. But, for all that, which matchup wins is kind of intriguing. Hell, I’d even watch a CSU-Nevada shootout late tonight.

What do you think?