Husky fans are undoubtedly amped up for their 7:30pm PT affair with the Oregon Ducks. The suspense over a football game that has been treated to such one-sided treatment for the last 12 years is particularly intense given that the Huskies seem to range from a slight favorite to heavy favorite depending on what mode of analysis you favor.
But don't sleep on the rest of college football, y'all.
There are a number of intriguing matchups that are worth an investment of some hours in the day to monitor. I know that a few of you (I'm looking at you Joe) have already announced your intentions to find a barstool or a tailgate somewhere tomorrow and to watch some of these games. Here are some of the things I'll be looking at:
- Sometime after you work in that early morning workout and your first Bloody Mary, I STRONGLY urge you to turn on what might be the most important game of the weekend. #13 Ole Miss is visiting Memphis (!) in a game that not only carries high stakes for both programs but also might serve as a preview of the future head coach at USC. Memphis HC Justin Fuente has turned in a remarkable turnaround job for a Memphis program that only a few seasons ago was the laughingstock of college football. A win over Ole Miss would not only knock the Rebs out of the playoff hunt but would likely put Memphis in the driver's seat for the "Group of 6" berth on New Years Day. MEMPHIS! Hard to believe.
- The headliner of the weekend is #10 Alabama visiting #9 Texas A&M. This should be an entertaining game if you are into watching big means team club baby seals dressed as grumpy walruses. The Aggies are clearly over-rated and I think the Tide are going to pound these guys. Interesting subtext to this game for Husky fans: a dominating Tide victory plus a dominating Husky victory could compel ESPN's College Gameday to visit Palo Alto for next week's UW / Stanford matchup. Something to keep in mind.
- How can a real college football fan not be completely intrigued by the Michigan vs Michigan State game? Jim Harbaugh is hosting one of his most hated rivals with a football team that he has made over in his image in a remarkably short period of time. On the other side stands another coach with a similar philosophy who has demonstrated an ability to get more out of his talent on a consistent basis than just about any guy out there. I expect it to be must-see TV.
- Avid readers of these game notes know that I always leave you with an upset pick and, here to date, I've gotten all but one (IIRC) correct. Last week, I called out the Tennessee win over Georgia. So, who will it be this week? It's a bit of a tough one, but the shocker of the weekend could well happen at Florida State. Louisville is visiting a Seminole team that seems to be playing some mediocre football. The Cardinals are far better than their 2-3 record indicates. I think they'll give the Seminoles all that they can handle and could even pull it out in the end.
College Football TV Schedule and Game Times - Week 7