I've been fortunate enough to attend the first two Notre Dame games, and they've been great. However, the only downside is that I haven't had time to just sit down with remote in hand and immerse myself in a dozen hours of football. That changes this week but...yikes, friends, this is not the strongest lineup. If you wanted to take a bye week, you could probably run some errands or "spend time with your family" until 6pm, when Florida and Tennessee kick off.
Here's your full television schedule for the weekend, courtesy of LSUFootball.net.
All times listed are Eastern.
Thursday, September 13th
Rutgers at South Florida, 7:30pm, ESPN: Eleventh-year senior B.J. Daniels led the Bulls to a come-from-behind win against Nevada, moving them to 2-0 and setting up a Thursday night showdown with fellow undefeated Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights have started off the post-Schiano era with two unremarkable wins (Tulane and Howard), but knocking off Skip Holtz's squad in Tampa would be a nice step.
Friday, September 14th
Washington State at UNLV, 9:00pm, ESPN: Late night Leach! The last time the Captain was on national television, his Cougars were getting bludgeoned by a superior cat against BYU. They struggled to a 24-20 week 2 win against Eastern Washingon, but UNLV is pretty terrible (0-2 against Minnesota and Northern Arizona) and this could be a nice way for Washington State to get a little momentum going into the PAC12 schedule.
Saturday, September 15th
Wake Forest at #5 Florida State, 12:00pm, ESPN: Florida State was a buzzy national title pick, and have started their season with two drubbings of I-AA schools. They are huge favorites over the Demon Deacons, yet Jim Grobe has knocked out the ‘Noles four of the last six times they've faced off. This will like be a blowout, but if it's close in the second half, there could be a "Here we go again" feeling in Tallahassee.
California at #12 Ohio State, 12:00pm, ABC: The first big name opponent of Urban Meyer's Ohio State tenure, although Cal might actually be kind of terrible. Zach Maynard bounced back from an opening loss to Nevada to rout Southern Utah, but a Buckeye defense and Braxton Miller will be a bit stiffer of a test.
TCU at Kansas, 12:00pm, FX: Charlie Weis versus a Gary Patterson defense! This Kansas season is going to be absolutely amazing, like the warmest, most exciting dumpster fire of all time. I will bring the popcorn, you bring the peanut butter M&M's and we will all have the merriest of times watching this.
#1 Alabama at Arkansas, 3:30pm, CBS: With the loss to Louisiana-Monroe and injury to starter Tyler Wilson, this game went from a battle of top ten teams to a likely squash. On one hand, the most ridiculous thing imaginable is "John L. Smith losing to a Sun Belt team then beating Nick Saban," and yet, it doesn't seem that impossible. (Okay, it's impossible. But this might be fun for a while?)
North Carolina at Louisville, 3:30pm, ABC/ESPN2: Teddy Bridgewater, everyone! He has eleven incompletions on the season, to go with 576 yards and two touchdown passes. The best name in college football goes against Larry Fedora, who has the name only an extremely lazy film noir writer would love. If the Cardinals can win here, they're looking at a West Virginia-less Big East and a potential double-digit victory season. The Tar Heels, meanwhile, are just trying to stay afloat as the NCAA circles Chapel Hill.
Navy at Penn State, 3:30pm, ABC/ESPN2: 0-2 with a heartbreaking loss in Charlottesville, now you get to come home to restless fans (who I'm sure will be kind to the much-maligned kicker) and an opponent that runs the most annoying offense to defend in all of college football. Have fun, Nittany Lions.
#18 Florida at #23 Tennessee, 6:00pm, ESPN: The Gators outslugged A&M in their SEC opener while Tyler Bray has led the Vols to two excellent offensive performances against NC State and Georgia State. The SEC East used to be decided in this matchup, and while South Carolina and Georgia will still have an important say in things, the winner here will have a leg-up in the race for a spot in the SEC Championship game.
Arizona State at Missouri, 7:00pm, ESPN2: Todd Graham's Sun Devils waxed Illinois last week to get to 2-0 while the Tigers lost their SEC opener to Georgia. Is anyone else having a tough time adjusting to Mizzou in the SEC? It'll start to make sense after a while, but I'm going to consider them a Big XII team for at least a few more weeks.
#2 USC at #21 Stanford, 7:30pm, FOX: Matt Barkley's season-long Heisman coronation swings through Palo Alto, where the Cardinal are still adjusting to life post-Luck. Will Stanford's power run game be strong enough to take advantage of USC's defensive deficiencies and keep their prolific offense off the field? Or is this just going to be the Barkley/Woods/Lee show in primetime?
#20 Notre Dame at #10 Michigan State, 8:00pm, ABC: This might be fun, right?
Utah State at Wisconsin, 8:00pm, Big Ten Network: Utah State is coming off a huge upset over in-state rival Utah. Wisconsin is coming off a flummoxing loss at Oregon State. This is probably where Bret Bielema runs up 80 and gets the Badger mojo back, but this might be competitive for a while.
#14 Texas at Ole Miss, 9:15pm, ESPN: I was tempted to go visit my friend Patrick who lives just outside of Oxford this weekend just to tailgate in The Grove until 8:15 local time. Both teams are 2-0 against light schedules, but if the Horns want to keep national title hopes alive, they'll need to take care of business against one of the SEC West weak sisters.
#25 BYU at Utah, 10:00pm, ESPN2: TheHoly War is very, very interesting this season, as supposed PAC12 sleeper Utah got clipped by Southern Utah and now plays host to a BYU team that's gutted Washington State and Weber State en route to a 2-0 start. The Utes got the fancy PAC12 invitation, but the independent Cougars might be the better team this year.