Alabama has the well-lubricated 7:00 central kick in Baton Rouge tonight. (Seriously, I wonder how many people are going to pass out before that one’s ready to kick off?) And, after an eight-hour marathon of college football, you still have the main event awaiting you. Saturdays are awesome.
Here is your afternoon and evening schedule and viewing guide. We’ll be back about half an hour before kick with your game thread and later this evening with your victory thread (not even worried, y’all.)
Here’s your schedule for the afternoon and evening. All times Eastern.
|Louisville at #2 Clemson||12:00 PM||ABC||WatchESPN.com|
|Nebraska at #10 Ohio State||12:00 PM||FOX||FoxSportsGo.com|
|#19 Syracuse at Wake Forest||12:00 PM||ACC Network||WatchESPN.com|
|#20 Texas A&M at Auburn||12:00 PM||ESPN||WatchESPN.com|
|#24 Iowa State at Kansas||12:00 PM||FSN||FoxSportsGo.com|
|South Carolina at Ole Miss||12:00 PM||SEC Network||WatchESPN.com|
|Rutgers at Wisconsin||12:00 PM||BTN||FoxSportsGo.com|
|Michigan State at Maryland||12:00 PM||ESPN2||WatchESPN.com|
|Oklahoma State at Baylor||12:00 PM||FS1||FoxSportsGo.com|
|Air Force at Army||12:00 PM||CBSSN||CBSSports.com|
|Memphis at East Carolina||12:00 PM||ESPNU||WatchESPN.com|
|Central Michigan at Eastern Michigan||12:00 PM||ESPN3||WatchESPN.com|
|Georgia Tech at North Carolina||12:15 PM||ACC Network||WatchESPN.com|
|Texas State at Georgia State||2:00 PM||ESPN+||WatchESPN.com|
|San Jose State at Wyoming||2:00 PM||AT&T SportsNet||WatchStadium.com|
|South Alabama at Arkansas State||3:00 PM||ESPN+||ESPN+|
|Georgia Southern at UL Monroe||3:00 PM||ESPN3||WatchESPN.com|
|Marshall at Southern Mississippi||3:00 PM||None||Facebook.com|
|#6 Georgia at #9 Kentucky||3:30 PM||CBS||CBSSports.com|
|#13 West Virginia at #17 Texas||3:30 PM||FOX||FoxSportsGo.com|
|#16 Iowa at Purdue||3:30 PM||ESPN2||WatchESPN.com|
|Florida State at #21 NC State||3:30 PM||ABC||WatchESPN.com|
|Liberty at UMass||3:30 PM||Eleven/NESN+||UMassAthletics.com|
|UTEP at Rice||3:30 PM||ESPN3||WatchESPN.com|
|Tulane at South Florida||3:30 PM||CBSSN||CBSSports.com|
|Navy at Cincinnati||3:30 PM||ESPNU||WatchESPN.com|
|Louisiana at Troy||3:30 PM||ESPN+||ESPN+|
|Kansas State at TCU||3:30 PM||FS1||FoxSportsGo.com|
|Minnesota at Illinois||3:30 PM||BTN||FoxSportsGo.com|
|#14 Penn State at #5 Michigan||3:45 PM||ESPN||WatchESPN.com|
|#22 Boston College at Virginia Tech||3:45 PM||ACC Network||WatchESPN.com|
|Missouri at #11 Florida||4:00 PM||SEC Network||WatchESPN.com|
|#15 Utah at Arizona State||4:00 PM||Pac-12 Networks||Pac-12.com|
|Charlotte at Tennessee||4:00 PM||SEC Network (Alt.)||WatchESPN.com|
|Alcorn State at New Mexico State||4:00 PM||FSN Arizona||Aggievision|
|Appalachian State at Coastal Carolina||5:00 PM||ESPN+||ESPN+|
|UConn at Tulsa||7:00 PM||CBSSN||CBSSports.com|
|Houston at SMU||7:00 PM||ESPNU||WatchESPN.com|
|Duke at Miami||7:00 PM||ESPN2||WatchESPN.com|
|#4Notre Dame at Northwestern||7:15 PM||ESPN||WatchESPN.com|
|Louisiana Tech at #18 Mississippi State||7:30 PM||SEC Network||WatchESPN.com|
|UCLA at Oregon||7:30 PM||FOX||FoxSportsGo.com|
|Florida Atlantic at Florida Intl||7:30 PM||Stadium||WatchStadium.com|
|UTSA at UAB||7:30 PM||beIN Sports||beINSports.com|
|#1 Alabama at #3 LSU||8:00 PM||CBS||CBSSports.com|
|#7 Oklahoma at Texas Tech||8:00 PM||ABC||WatchESPN.com|
|Stanford at Washington||9:00 PM||Pac-12 Networks||Pac-12.com|
|USC at Oregon State||10:00 PM||FS1||FoxSportsGo.com|
|BYU at Boise State||10:15 PM||ESPN2||WatchESPN.com|
|San Diego State at New Mexico||10:15 PM||ESPNU||WatchESPN.com|
|#23 Fresno State at UNLV||10:30 PM||CBSSN||CBSSports.com|
|California at #8 Washington State||10:45 PM||ESPN||WatchESPN.com|
|Utah State at Hawai'i||11:59 PM||Spectrum Sports PPV||WatchStadium.com|
Absolutely Do Not Miss These Games:
No. 9 Kentucky (+9 1/2 ) hosts the No. 6 Georgia Bulldogs in probably the most important football game in Lexington since Bear Bryant roamed the sideline — and that’s not hyperbole. This Georgia team has a ton of talent but a lot of weakness; this Kentucky team has some talent but just plays great team football. You get the feeling that the team that can impose their will upfront — and on paper that appears to be Kentucky — will win this game and the SEC East. If it turns into who can make the most plays in the passing game, UGA has a wide advantage with their incredibly athletic secondary. It should be a great game irrespective. Who knew a Kentucky football game would be appointment viewing in November?
Both Purdue and Iowa (-2 1/2) were hot stuff two weeks ago after picking up big wins. Then they both predictably fell flat the following week. Still, the Big 10 West is wide open, though neither team can afford another loss, being a game behind (with Wisconsin) Northwestern. This one could be a bit shootout-ish. The Boilermakers open it wide up at home. But the defense has been really shaky this year, and Iowa’s Stanley can also light it up. Should be a great game...even for the Big 10.
No. 7 Oklahoma travels to the land of tossing tortillas to face the Texas Tech Red Raiders. The Raiders are a big home ‘dog (+13 1/2), but as usual the offense is ridiculously good. The Sooners and Raiders are among the nation’s worst in pass efficiency defense. This won’t be the break-the-scoreboard tilt like Mayfield-versus-Mahomes, but it won’t be far off of it either. Tough game for the Sooners against an offense that can mostly throw punch-for-punch. The teams really are that close: No. 1 and 2 in Big 12 scoring; No. 1 and 3 in passing offense; No. 5 and 6 in scoring defense; No. 5 and 7 in rushing defense. The biggest advantage seems to be OU’s ground game. Can OU win up front.
The Big 12’s second most important game of the season sees us travel to Morgantown as the Texas Longhorns (-2) face the West Virginia Mountaineers. These are the biggest, most physical teams in the Big 12, and the stakes simply could not be bigger, especially for the home ‘Eers — a possible playoff berth is still very much alive. WVU has plenty of opportunities to get some quality wins down the stretch that could vault them into the top four with a few breaks. This is appointment viewing at one of CFB’s most hostile venues.
No. 1 Alabama (-14 1⁄2 ) at No. 3 LSU — Uh, yes?
No. 21 Utah State (-19 1/2) at Hawaii — Whatever the over may be, take it. This will be a highly entertaining game between the MWC’s two highest scoring offenses. The difference is that the Aggies have a defense. That will likely negate the incredible home field advantage that the Warriors have in Honolulu. This game technically starts on Sunday (12:07 Eastern). Let’s get weird, Mountain West.
Keep an eye on these:
Oddsmakers don’t think too much of No. 14 Penn State’s chances (+13 1/2) when they travel to the Big House to face the No. 5 Michigan Wolverines. Really, why would they? Franklin is literally winless on the road against ranked teams as PSU’s head man. For the Wolverines, they’ve finally figured out how to best use Shea Patterson, and that involves scheming his strengths to work around UM’s biggest weakness: Offensive line. The defense is nasty as always and a salty veteran group. Still, you do worry about UM’s ability to matchup against athletic teams. That has always been Harbaugh’s biggest deficiency at Ann Arbor. But, here we are: Win this one, blast two patsies, and The Game in the Horseshoe is for the Eastern crown.
No. 4 Notre Dame vs. Northwestern (+9 1/2). It’s a testament to the weakness of the West and the strength of the Wildcats defense that this team is in first place. They’ve been ferocious at home too: beating Michigan State by 10, Wisconsin by two touchdowns, and falling a FG short against Michigan. This won’t be a cakewalk for an Irish team that needs to regroup after a bye and two unsteady weeks. The path to the playoffs is pretty clear for Notre Dame: just don’t pull a Brian Kelly. Definite upset alert tonight in this one.
UCLA travels to the scene of Chip Kelly’s crime, to face his old Oregon (-10 1/2) team. The nation’s youngest CFB team has played a lot better the last few weeks, but will it matter to the Ducks who have been up-and-down and are still trying to regain the consistency they had under Kelly?
One of the low-key good games of the day is in the C-USA. Lane Kiffin’s FAU Owls travel to face the Group A leading FIU Panthers (-2 1⁄2 ). If any team will stress FIU, it will be the Owls’ hurry-up ground game. But, Kiffin’s FAU defense in 2018 may be the worst one he’s ever fielded. Should be a shootout in South Florida irrespective. Butch Davis-in-Exile has done some great stuff in Florida. Man, how the mighty have fallen for these two to be coaching in a directional Florida game.
Washington - Stanford (+10) — Remember when this one was supposed to be for the P12 North and both teams were preseason Top 10s? Welp. That ain’t gonna happen. I suspect both are just trying to stay out of the Sun Bowl at this point. Washington’s offense is an absolute visual crime. I’ve never seen a team that missed someone as much as the Huskies have missed John Ross the last two seasons. As for Stanford? These woes couldn’t happen to a more smug turdmuffin. Go Doogs (but I don’t see them covering 10).
Cal wants to win with defense, and they’ve been better than expected this year — including knocking Washington out of all contention last week. But the road trip to Pullman is a tough one. Can the Washington State Cougars (-9 1⁄2 ), firmly in the playoff picture, keep it up against the most physical and fundamentally sound defensive team they’ve played to date?
Today’s Unwatchable Filth:
Man, that New Mexico State - Alcorn State game is tempting. But, why pick the low-hanging fruit when you have the season’s worst game...by a wide margin: UTEP at Rice. Combined, these two teams have one win total — a FG victory for Rice over Prairie View (!!!). They are both in the bottom 25 in defense and in the bottom 6 of offense. Even Vegas sees a draw — the vortex of sadness is a pick’em. There’s no way these coaching staffs return next year.
I almost want to create a drinking game in its honor.
We’ll be back at 6:30 Eastern for your game thread. Enjoy a great afternoon and evening of football. Roll Tide.