So let’s talk Jadeveon Clowney.
Only kidding. ESPN has said enough about Clowney the past week for all of us. Just know that the nontroversy surrounding next year’s top draft pick is just that: a non-issue.
Instead, let’s talk about the packed slate of games we’re getting this weekend. Five of the six major conferences are featured on this week’s viewing, some multiple times. Realistically, you could sit in front of the TV at noon Saturday and be entertained until about 2am Sunday. Cancel your plans before it’s too late.
Arizona vs. USC, 10:30pm (Fox Sports 1) *Thursday Night*
With Lane Kiffin gone, the Trojans will take the first step toward salvaging their season.
#25 Missouri vs. #7 Georgia, 12pm (ESPN)
I’ll be watching this game for a few reasons. For one, it’s one of two ranked SEC games this weekend. I’m also anxious to see Missouri’s highly-recruited wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham and how Georgia’s offense moves the ball without so many of its most dangerous weapons.
#12 Oklahoma vs. Texas, 12pm (ABC)
Texas has lost its last two meetings with Oklahoma by a combined 118-38, but it’s still the Red River Rivalry. If Missouri-Georgia isn’t your cup of tea for the early game, this may be the next thing.
Pittsburgh vs. #24 Virginia Tech, 12pm (ESPN 3 – subject to blackout)
…unless you’re a Virginia native. In that case, you may want to see the newly-ranked Hokies in the first conference game against Pitt since their Big East days.
Boston College vs. #3 Clemson, 3:30pm (ABC/ESPN 2)
Clemson’s trap game doesn’t seem like much of a trap at all. But stranger things have happened.
#17 Florida vs. #10 LSU, 3:30pm (CBS)
I still can’t get over Zach Mettenberger and this potent LSU offense. They’ll welcome the Gators this weekend, who are beginning a brutal three-game stretch.
#15 Baylor vs. Kansas State, 3:30pm (Fox)
Their opposition hasn’t been stellar, but Baylor certainly has, scoring 69+ points in each of their first four games. Whether they make it five or not, you’ll want to become acquainted with quarterback Bryce Petty and running back Lache Seastrunk.
#19 Northwestern vs. Wisconsin, 3:30pm (ABC/ESPN 2)
Heartbreaking loss for Northwestern last weekend, but Wildcat fans can take solace in this: if they get escape Madison with a win, the Big Ten Championship game is well within reach.
#2 Oregon vs. #16 Washington, 4pm (Fox Sports 1)
Washington came so close to beating Stanford at home last week. I hope they have the confidence to slow Oregon’s offense, because they certainly have the talent.
#18 Michigan vs. Penn State, 5pm (ESPN)
Bowl-eligible or not, Penn State can still affect the outcome of the Big Ten. Michigan will be in for a tough matchup.
#9 Texas A&M vs. Ole Miss, 8:30pm (ESPN)
Remember Johnny Manziel? Well believe it or not, he hasn’t gone anywhere. But don’t sleep on Ole Miss, who begin a six (yes, six)-game home stand this weekend.
Oregon State vs. Washington State, 10:30pm (ESPN U)
It’s unlikely that either the Beavers or the Cougars finish ahead of the “big three” in the Pac-12 North, but each look on their way to a bowl bid, at the very least. There is at least something to see here.