Fellow writers, commenters, regular visitors and all other random passersby here at One Foot Down, football season officially starts tomorrow people! Each week we will take a look around the country and discuss the games that we are most interested in watching. While the Notre Dame game is automatic there are several other matchups each week that we will keep an eye on for one reason or another. So if you are one of those fans that has 2 or 3 TVs going on Saturday this weekly feature is for you.
While most major programs kick off the season with a glorified scrimmage against an FCS foe there are a few programs out there that have quality matchups on the slate for week 1. We also prioritize keeping an eye on all future opponents throughout the season.
Don't forget that we will also be hosting an open thread here at OFD for the Notre Dame vs. Navy game on Saturday so if you have your laptop, tablet or smartphone handy stop by and join the conversation.
If any of you are looking for full TV schedules I suggest the two links below. Both are great resources for any college football fan. You can find permanent links to them in the "TV Schedules" widget on the bottom right hand side of our front page.
Games after the jump. *All times listed are EST.Thursday 30 August
South Carolina at Vanderbilt 7:00 ESPN
So it begins. This matchup really doesn't interest me much but I suppose that watching Ol' Ball Coach make faces on the sideline makes it a tolerable season opener. Oh yeah, South Cackalacky also has all world running back Marcus Lattimore. He's good.
Texas A&M at Louisiana Tech 7:30 ESPNU
This is actually interesting. Louisiana Tech is attempting to go the TCU/ Boise State route and become one of those small conference teams that you don't really want on your schedule. Mike Leach disciple Sonny Dykes is entering his 3rd season in Ruston and would love nothing more than to knock off the newest member of the SEC on National television. Much to the liking of Horns everywhere Aggie might take one in the shorts here.
Washington State at BYU 10:15 ESPN2
MOAR Air Raid! Right after you watch La Tech give TaMU a run for their money you can flip over to the deuce for the triumphant return of the Dread Pirate himself! Fittingly Leach will uncork his Air Raid offense against his alma mater and undoubtedly make a handful of great deadpan comments to the sideline reporter on his way to and from the locker room at halftime and after the game.
*There are literally 12 other crapfests on TV Thursday night but most of them are airing on channels that may or may not be buried in your cable package. Don't worry, you aren't interested.
Friday 31 August
NC State at Tennessee 7:30 ESPNU
Meh. How much longer do you give Derek Dooley? I wonder if he will at least rock those sweet orange pants?
Boise State at Michigan State 8:00 ESPN
Now that's a little more like it. I'm actually still surprised that Michigan State scheduled this game. Isn't there an unwritten rule in the B1G that you have to open with some MACtion? I'll be really curious to see who Boise trots out there as the heir apparent to departed quarterback Kellen Moore. That kid was a straight winner. Someone needs to put him in the cockpit of a Cobra gunship and turn him loose on the Taliban. I might actually be able to set that up. Does anyone have his number? Kidding. Sort of. I'm sure his replacement will be some other non-descript kid that proceeds to light it up and win games. That's just how Chris Petersen and Boise roll. I'm also really curious to get eyes on Sparty sans Kirk Cousins.
Saturday 1 September
Notre Dame vs Navy (Dublin, Ireland) 9:00 CBS
That's 6am for those of you on the West Coast! There will be plenty of discussion about this game elsewhere on the site so I'll keep it short. After Saturday nobody will be sleeping on EG.
Ohio at Penn State 12:00 ESPN
Why is this game on TV? Seriously. You couldn't pay me enough to tune in. I've officially had my fill of all things Penn State. The rest of the noon games are also awful. The upside is that you will be able to get in a nice nap after the Notre Dame game and not miss anything!
Miami (FL) at Boston College 3:30 ABC/ESPN2
I'll tune into this one on just to get a look at both future opponents. What's up with the ACC playing conference games in week 1?
Southern Miss at Nebraska 3:30 ABC/ESPN2
This sounds sort of interesting. What's the latest on Taylor Martinez? After bursting onto the scene in 2010 he very quietly put up some pretty good numbers last year. Dude can run. Corn still has ramblin' Rex Burkhead at running back too. Phil Steele likes the Huskers to win the Legends Division ahead of Michigan and Denard. Hmmmmm... This game is probably worth checking out.
Colorado State vs. Colorado (Denver, CO) 4:00 FX
Remember when this game used to be interesting? Man that was a long time ago wasn't it!
Clemson vs. Auburn (Atlanta, GA) 7:00 ESPN
I wonder if Dabo Swinney and his boys ever mentally recovered from that woodshed beating they took from Holgo and West Virginia in the Orange Bowl? That was so brutal! Mean Gene Chzik is breaking in a couple of new coordinators at Auburn which is probably worth keeping an eye on. His days might be numbered post Cam. Oh yeah, that Sammy Watkins kid is pretty fun to watch. It's worth checking out the first quarter.
South Dakota State at Kansas 7:00PM Live Web Video
For those interested in a Chuck Weis, Dayne Crist, Mike Ragone and Anthony McDonald sighting. Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk.
Hawai'i at USC 7:30 FOX
Norm Chow returns to the Coliseum to mix it up with the mighty Trojans. USC will likely win big but this one still rates a spot on TV #3. All of the scouting!
Alabama vs. Michigan (Jerrydome Dallas, TX) 8:00 ABC
Listening to Musberger ramble on about Denard for 3 hours might be more than I can bear. I'm thinking Little Nicky's D keeps Predator bottled up. Bobby Diaco will be studying this film very soon.
Arkansas State at Oregon 10:30 ESPN
Gus Malzahn makes his debut as the Arkie State front man under the lights at the Little Big House. Who isn't up for a little late night Black Mamba? What's the over/under on him breaking off a couple of 80+ yard runs to the house?
Oklahoma at UTEP 10:30 FSN
Bob Stoops travels to the Great Pass of the West to beat up on Mike Price and the Miners. Did you know that Mike Price is entering his 9th season at UTEP? It seems like just yesterday that he got fired by Alabama without ever coaching a game. The Sooner Schooner, the ghost of Brian Bosworth's "National Communists Against Athletes" T-Shirt and Barry Switzer's favorite highball glass will propel the Sooners to victory in this one by pick a number between 40 and 60. Regardless we may as well go ahead and start scouting the Sooners too. Side note, the Sun Bowl is a pretty cool stadium. Miami was so cold you guys! All of the Under Armour wasn't enough!
Sunday 2 September
Kentucky at Louisville 3:30 ESPN
Get your Charlie Strong on. There is also the potential for an Ashley Judd sighting.
SMU at Baylor 6:30 FSN
Methodists vs. Baptists y'all! This could actually be pseudo entertaining. June Jones is trying to resurrect SMU and Art Briles will be exploring life after RG3. Don't expect much defense.
Monday 3 September
Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech 8:00 ESPN
Does anyone else think that Paul Johnson might be nearing the end of his run in Hotlanta? What happens to the Flexbone offense if both he and Ken Niumatalololololololo get canned at the same time? Where does Johnson go from Georgia Tech? Back to Navy? Naaaahhhh.
Lane Stadium is a tough place to play any time but the Hokie faithful will be good and lubed up on Wild Turkey and Fighting Cock by the time this one kicks off under the lights. I've been there and the Hokie faithful don't mess around. They power down all of the bird themed bourbon!
VT returns 9 starters on Defense this year which doesn't bode well for Paul Johnson's offense. Nobody makes 8-9 guys magically appear in the box like Bud Foster. Conversely the Hokies only return 3 starters on offense. Is Logan Thomas for real? This could be a low scoring struggle. I'll take the Hokies for $500 Alex.
What other games should we be trying to keep an eye on?