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Friday Night College Football viewing guide and why-to-watch

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We welcome an old friend to the Pac 12’s Friday Night lights.

<p zoompage-fontsize="15" style="">NCAA Football: Arizona at Houston

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

In the ACC, we have the rebuilt-but-very-human No. 23 Virginia Cavs hosting a Pitt Panthers team that has played a lot better in the second half of the season, but sees itself at just .500 in 2018. This won’t be an easy one for Hoos — the Panthers have an interesting offense that can stress old school defenses. Likewise, the Cavs just don’t have the offense to blow anyone out. It’s both a testament to Bronco Mendenhall (and the weakness of the ACC) that UVA is ranked and sitting at 6-2.
The game is at 6:30 Central on ESPN. The line stands at UVA -7, and that seems about right. This should still be a tight one, but UVA has been really good at home.

Mike Sanford’s Western Kentucky sits at a very disappointing 1-7 on the season, while MTSU has rebounded to 5-3 after a slow start and is firmly in the mix for the CUSA Eastern crown — and at 4-1 is just one game back of FIU with that head-to-head match remaining. This would have been a much better game five years ago. For the Blue Raiders it’s about holding serve and for the Hilltoppers it’s about salvaging an awful season.
I can’t see a reason to watch this game given the other ones on tap. But, in the interest of full disclosure it’s on CBSSN at 7:00 Central. The line is Mighty Mitzu by -13.5, but we take no opinion on this one.

The other game of importance tonight is the Arizona Wildcats (-2.5) hosting the Colorado Buffaloes. After the Buffs got off to a hot start, the reality of conference play set in and they’ve now dropped three in a row. Meanwhile, the ‘Cats are going in the opposite direction. After a very slow start, ‘Zona has rebounded to 4-5 on the season and it looks like Kevin Sumlin just may get a dead cat bounce with this team right into a bowl game. However, any postseason plans begin and end with this one — there’s practically no bowl game path that don’t include picking up a winnable home game in the desert. If you’ve not seen CU’s excellent wide receiving corps, tune in for that. With Alabama, West Virginia, Ohio State, and Ole Miss, they’re among the very best in the nation.
The game is at 9:30 on FS1 — so pace those Friday night cocktails with care: it’ll be a long one. Arizona is a -2.5 favorite, which is basically just the home field. I’m agnostic on this one as well: CU isn’t that good, but we’ve seen the last six years that Sumlin can cause a crash in a two-car parade.