OK it’s only one convict and he’s only potentially a convict. So maybe it should be Catholics vs. Idiot.
You know what sucks about watching the greatest day in college football history? Trying to live up to that in subsequent weeks. It just can’t be done. I hate to say it feels like another downer this week but it does. Then again, I am going to make my PVR do some heavy lifting on Saturday so not watching it live may be the real reason I am not looking forward to it. I digress.
Should we start with the cable schedule? It’s not that inspiring so might as well get it out of the way…
|Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh (Thu)||7:30 PM||TSN3/TSN4|
|Colorado School of Mines at Fort Lewis (Thu)||8:00 PM||CBSSN|
|Western Kentucky at Florida Atlantic||12:00 PM||WNYO|
|Purdue at Minnesota||12:00 PM||BTN|
|Kansas State at Oklahoma||12:00 PM||TSN3|
|Iowa at Maryland||12:00 PM||TSN2|
|Virginia at Duke||12:30 PM||WSBK|
|Rutgers at Ohio State||3:30 PM||ABC|
|Texas A&M at Alabama||3:30 PM||CBS|
|Cincinnati at SMU||3:30 PM||CBSSN|
|Rhode Island at Richmond||3:30 PM||WNYO|
|Southern Miss at North Texas||7:00 PM||WNYO|
|Utah State at Colorado State||7:00 PM||CBSSN|
|Nebraska at Northwestern||7:30 PM||BTN|
|Notre Dame at Florida State||8:00 PM||ABC/TSN2|
|Hawaii at San Diego State||10:30 PM||CBSSN|
Yikes. Other than Irish-Noles, this is positively uninspiring. I guess the Aggies-Tide game should still be considered must-watch (if you’re a true college football fan) but after what’s happened the last two weeks to these teams doesn’t make this matchup seem like the matchups of yesteryear (Manziel-McCarron era). As of right now, my guide (Bell Fibe) is showing a noon game on ABC which I am pretty sure won’t happen since ABC doesn’t have a game on at noon. So I will disregard that for now unless something changes. Update: This morning I checked my guide and no noon game on ABC now; however, with the NLCS possibly being over in five games, FOX will have an opening in their schedule on Saturday. We may see OKST-TCU or WASH-ORE move to FOX which would be nice, especially the Huskies-Ducks game since it’s at night and the cable schedule is woefully thin at night.
Update #2: No FOX game as they have kept OKST-TCU and WASH-ORE on FS1. My guess is that there was not enough time to switch one of them over to the main network.
Now the specialty pack schedule:
|Fresno State at Boise State (Fri)||8:00 PM|
|Temple at Houston (Fri)||9:00 PM|
|Syracuse at Wake Forest (SD only)||12:00 PM|
|Tulane at UCF||12:00 PM|
|Furman at South Carolina||12:00 PM|
|Virginia at Duke (SD only)||12:30 PM|
|Michigan State at Indiana||3:30 PM|
|UCLA at California||3:30 PM|
|NC State at Louisville (SD only)||3:30 PM|
|Clemson at Boston College (SD only)||3:30 PM|
|Georgia at Arkansas||4:00 PM|
|Tennessee at Ole Miss||7:00 PM|
|Missouri at Florida||7:00 PM|
|Georgia Tech at North Carolina (SD only)||7:00 PM|
|Kentucky at LSU||7:30 PM|
|Nevada at BYU||10:15 PM|
|Stanford at Arizona State||10:30 PM|
OK at least this has a bit more meat on it, depending on what will end up on the damn schedule. I have included five games on the schedule (marked by an *) that I am sure will make their way there (eventually) but as of right now, aren’t on there. Usually (usually) if an ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, or SEC Network game is not on one of the TSNs, it will end up on the specialty pack. But for some reason, Bell (and, I presume, Rogers) likes to not put anything up or put “Teams TBA” instead. I would say it makes the most sense to put all the ESPNU games, for example, on one channel throughout the day. Bell (and, presumably, Rogers) doesn’t think that way for some odd reason. Must be part of their dartboard strategy of programming they like to use. Don’t get me wrong…the games usually end up where they are supposed to be; it’s just that the schedule for those games should be set by now since the American networks have them set by now.
Games of the Week
Notre Dame at Florida State (8:00, ABC) – Duh. This is a no-brainer. Call it what you want but it is a huge game. Guaranteed no matter the problems Jameis Winston has outside of football, he will be playing Saturday night. Basically, it comes down to this: if Florida State wins, there is a good chance they are back at #1 and, barring something crazy, they punch their ticket for the College Football Playoff Bonanza; if Notre Dame wins, call it at least a bit of an upset (since it’s in Tallahassee) and the Irish are one step closer to being in one of the semi-finals (although their road is light years’ tougher than the Noles).
Kansas State at Oklahoma (Noon, TSN3) – At one point it seemed this could have an outside shot as Big XII game of the year. Not so much anymore but it’s still very important. Whoever loses here loses a) a shot at the CFP and b) a shot at the Big XII title. And yes, both are somewhat intertwined. Oklahoma has looked unlike a top-10 team the last two weeks so expect them to come out roaring in this one.
Oklahoma State at TCU (4:00, we won’t see this) – It’s on FOX Sports One…need I say more? Again, loser has no shot at the College Football Playoff unless some insanity happens (which could be…after that one week we can’t say it won’t happen anymore).
Stanford at Arizona State (10:30, specialty pack) – Quietly, ASU has been going up the rankings. Could they sneak past everyone and go back to the Pac-12 Championship? Really, they hold their own fate in their hands. Win out and they go, it’s as simple as that. For Stanford not so much. They need help although winning here and against Oregon later in the year sets them up nicely.
Utah at Oregon State (Thursday, 10:00, who the fuck knows) – Not even FOX knows where this game will end up. Right now it seems like a joint FOX Sports Two/Pac-12 Network dealie but honestly, I couldn’t give less of a shit since I won’t see it regardless. Here could be the wrinkle in Arizona State’s (and UCLA’s) plans to win the South. If Utah wins here, they legitimize their spot in the top 20 teams in the nation and look like a potentially dangerous opponent in a one-and-done conference title game.
Texas A&M at Alabama (3:30, CBS) – Two weeks ago this was huge. Now not so much. Saying that, if either of these programs want to keep pace with the Mississippi Two, they have to win here. Kenny Hill needs to show he’s not actually Kenny Turbl or Kenny Mediocre or Kenny OK. Alabama needs some leadership (yes I do partially agree with Kathy Webb’s boytoy) and need to get it so Nick Saban isn’t so damn pissed off.
The Gambling Section of this post
Well, not so much. I don’t gamble on college football. To me, it cheapens the experience and I prefer to just watch the games for the games themselves. NFL, that’s a whole other story but that’s for a different post. Here are a few picks I would have this week if I were gambling some form of legal tender (Bitcoin perhaps?):
Utah over Oregon State
Baylor over West Virginia
Maryland over Iowa
Duke over Virginia
Texas A&M over Alabama (in an upset)
Oklahoma over Kansas State
Florida State over Notre Dame
I will keep everyone apprised of schedule changes on here and through my Twitter account (@LikeABauce1978). For the most part, what’s here should end up being what we see on TV. Tomorrow, I will have the NFL schedule posted.