Wow! We begin the proceedings with three almost-interesting Thursday nighters followed by a Saturday schedule that will leave you reaching for that bag of Butterfingers you’re supposed to hand out to kids but will polish off by mid-afternoon, leading to that last minute replacement candy run.
TCU @ West Virginia – WVU looked like it was back in the saddle again…until it started playing Big 12 games. This might be a good time to check out for a few weeks, Eers fan, and just come back when they get to that Iowa State-Kansas double at the end of next month.
North Carolina @ Pitt – The winner gets Duke next month for the ACC Coastal and the right to get stomped by Clemson in Charlotte. Holy shit! It’s a Thursday game that actually kinda matters, and from these two, no less! Just one question: how come, as we write this, there are tickets available for $9 on Stubhub? Sometimes seeming to matter isn’t the same thing as actually mattering.
Oregon @ Arizona State – 4-3 Arizona State is favored. Against Oregon. In primetime. Just let that sink in for a minute. That jolt you just felt was the West Coast spinning off its axis.
Florida @ Georgia – Sure, the WLOCP is the best game of a less than scintillating day, but outside of whomping Ole Miss – who’ve beaten Bama and lost to Memphis (meaning who freaking knows whether they’re awesome, awful, or just very, very confused) – the Gators haven’t exactly been spectacular. Georgia’s best win is, what, Mizzou? In other words, the winner gets dusted by the LSU/Bama winner in the Georgia Dome.
Nebraska @ Purdue – Here’s a sign of how bad things have gotten in Lincoln: the Huskers are 10-point favorites. Whaddya think the spread would’ve been back in the good ol’ days? 30 points? 40? Half a hundred?
Tennessee @ Kentucky – And so the Vols begin their climb to 8-4 with a win over that team that always seems to be turning the corner until they find out that that signature win against [pick one: Missouri, South Carolina, USC (last year)] wasn’t quite as program-definingly impressive as they thought it was.
Stanford @ Washington State – Ready to have your mind blown? This is an actual, real live serious football game! No, really. It might even be for the Pac-12 North. Okay, so you know who’s taking the P12 North. At least there will be points aplenty, plus some fascinating Mike Leach facial expressions of disgust.
Ole Miss @ Auburn – Remember when Gus Malzahn’s spread was God’s gift to college football? What’s left of that notion is likely to be consumed by Landsharks.
USC @ Cal – It’s THIS YEAR’S HEISMAN FAVORITE AGAINST NEXT YEARS TOP NFL DRAFT PICK!!! Sorry, we thought it was still August. Okay, so it’s a really high-scoring dealybob featuring two teams that have had just enough disappointing setbacks to leave a moldering cloud of sadness lingering over their respective pieces of California paradise.
Oklahoma @ Kansas – C’mon Sooners. We’ve been waiting for somebody to put up a 100-spot this year, and this is your chance. Put the pedal to the metal and don’t stop until there’s a Benjamin on the Jumbotron. We believe in you!
Vanderbilt @ Houston – Quick: which one is the Power 5 school? Follow-up question: which Power 5 school do you think will be retaining the services of the coach in red next year?
Florida International @ Florida Atlantic – It’s the game that gave us that F_U logo that the four-letter used to trot out! That alone should be enough to make you say F-U to this game, though we would point out that you can currently get a ticket for the same nine bucks as you can for UNC-Pitt.