This is Week 6, and game 6, for the Buckeyes who have to wait until November to get their momentary reprieve from the action. The fatigue is already catching up with the Buckeyes. Though undefeated, the season has already seen several Buckeyes bow out of the proceedings. CJ Barnett went down in Week 2 and Tyler Moeller is now out for the season after tearing his pectoral muscle last week. Jake Stoneburner is questionable and Ohio State fans will fall on their sword if something bad happens to Terrelle Pryor.
We could sure use the comforting bedside manners of Marcus Welby now.
Ohio State returns home to play the Indiana Hoosiers in a game slated for a noontime kickoff. Provided all goes according to plan, you may sit in and consume the rest of the weekend’s offerings. To that end, here are some pertinent offerings.
- Troy @ Middle Tennessee State (ESPN2, 8:00pm ET). Oh man, Tuesday night football is back already? I watched bits and pieces of Troy’s 42-13 demolition of Middle Tennessee State in front of their “blackout” crowd. It was ugly, and that’s what you get. That’s Tuesday night football.
- UAB @ Central Florida (ESPN, 8:00pm ET). If the quality of Tuesday night football isn’t bad enough, you get: Wednesday night football. I ended up hitting the mute button and am watching this game while typing this post and listening to the radio. Somehow, crappy C-USA football is just better to the tune of Billy Stewart’s “I Do Love You” and Bobby Sherman’s “Julie Do Ya Love Me”.
- Nebraska @ Kansas State (ESPN, 7:30pm ET). Nebraska begins its Big 12 farewell tour in Manhattan, Kansas. Outside a potential home-and-home with Oklahoma in 2020 and 2021, it will probably never see any of these guys again. It’s the first game of conference play for Nebraska and only the second for Kansas State (beat Iowa State in Week 3), but the winner of this one has to win the Big 12 North. The Big 12 North sucks more than usual. You’re inclined to say it’s Nebraska (and I would agree), but Cornhusker fans hope that the Week 5 bye was put to good use after a poor outing against 1-AA South Dakota State.
- Connecticut @ Rutgers (ESPN, 7:30pm ET). Oh God. One of your Friday night football offerings: the team that lost by two touchdowns to Temple vs. the team that just lost to Tulane. This is why there’s beer at your local bar on a Friday night.
- Oklahoma State @ Louisiana-Lafayette (ESPN2, 9:00pm ET). That’s not a misprint. That’s not Louisiana State (LSU) either. This is a road game for Oklahoma State. Yes, it is. Temptation leads you gently by the hand. One week, you’re playing a conference game on Thursday. The next, you’re playing in a payout game in Lafayette, Louisiana against a Sun Belt team. This is why Buckeye reactionaries get uncomfortable when the word “change” is thrown around.
- Indiana @ Ohio State (ESPN, 12:00pm ET). More on this later.
- Illinois @ Penn State (ESPN2, 12:00pm ET). You’re not watching this, but somehow this game intrigues. Both are coming off deflating losses, Penn State’s loss to Iowa more deflating than the Illini’s loss to us. You’re inclined to think this is an easy win for Penn State at home, though I can’t imagine there is such a thing anymore for the Nittany Lions. They have scored one touchdown in the past 12 quarters against quality competition. That’s assuming Temple, against whom they scored a late fourth quarter touchdown, counts as “quality competition”.
- Tennessee @ Georgia (ESPN3.com, 12:00pm ET). Georgia is 1-4. The Bulldogs have lost 4 straight, including a loss on the road at Colorado in a game that it should win by two touchdowns just by showing up and flashing its SEC card. Presently, it is favored by 12 against Tennessee. Such is the SEC these days. It’s a one-team conference.
- Alabama @ South Carolina (CBS, 3:30pm ET). Speaking of which, the one-team conference goes on the road to play Spurrier’s Gamecocks. While broadcast on CBS, it nevertheless was bright and shiny enough to attract the attention of Gameday. Alabama is the superior team, but South Carolina is pretty good themselves. They had a bye in Week 5 to help prepare for this game. Several of Alabama’s future opponents will get a week off before they play Alabama, while the Crimson Tide does not benefit from this. This leads to charges of anti-Alabama bias, injustices where I live. This (among other reasons) is why I despise these people.
- ArKansas vs. Texas A&M [in Jerryworld] (ABC, 3:30pm ET). You don’t get many interesting non-conference matchups this late into the season, but this counts. A&M and ArKansas are former conference foes in the old Southwest Conference. The Southwest Conference went the way of the dinosaur and ArKansas ultimately chose to become an island in the SEC in 1992. This is their second straight meeting in Jerryworld, which resulted in a 47-19 pasting by the Razorbacks. Expect a similar result here.
- Michigan State @ Michigan (ABC, 3:30pm ET). Dantonio will return to the team in this in-state tilt, where it seems like it’s been forever since both teams were ranked. Denard He16manOMGLOL!!11!shoelace~~!! will again get to demonstrate his wares.
- Clemson @ North Carolina (ABC, 3:30pm ET). Somehow this got on the WWL’s regional feeds. I would have preferred WVU-UNLV at the same time slot (it’s the best of what else is available). I’m guessing John Blake pulled a few strings and orchestrated this deal.
- Pittsburgh @ Notre Dame (NBC, 3:30pm ET). Charlie Weis was fired one year too early. This could have been an epic clash between two incompetent NFL throwaways. As it stands, it’s just a crappy Pitt team playing a crappy Notre Dame team.
- Oregon State @ Arizona (Versus, 6:00pm ET). Don’t look now, but Arizona is still undefeated. They had last week off and put their undefeated season on the line against the Pac-10 team that lost to the two uppity mid-majors this season. A November 26th tilt at Eugene, Oregon still looms…
- Utah @ Iowa State (Regional [try one of the Fox Sports], 7:00pm ET). Utah has one of the most interesting schedules in college football. I didn’t say it was the toughest, but their non-conference games include hosting Pitt in Week 1, this game at Ames, Iowa and a trip to Notre Dame in November. You know me: if it’s a weird intersectional matchup, I get interested.
- Colorado @ Missouri (Regional [try one of the Fox Sports], 7:00pm ET). This is Colorado’s Big 12 farewell tour as well, and maybe the farewell tour for Dan Hawkins too. It may take five downs to say goodbye to Colorado this game.
- Auburn @ Kentucky (ESPN2, 7:30pm ET). Southern teams are going to hog the nightcap on your viewing schedule. Watch this if A) you really like Brian Hartline and want to see his maligned younger brother quarterback the Wildcats, B) you want to see why Auburn is still undefeated or C) you lost a bet.
- LSU @ Florida (ESPN, 7:30pm ET). …
- Purdue @ Nerdwestern (Big Ten Network, 7:30pm ET). Iowa’s most hated rival goes on the road to begin league play at the Lambda Lambda Lambda fraternity house. Ohio State fans are sweating the team’s injuries, but it’s got nothing on what’s going on in West Lafayette. Not that we feel bad about that. See you soon.
- Florida State @ Miami (ABC, 8:00pm ET). This game gets pimped out every year, but it suffers from a fatal flaw: both teams must be good in order for anyone to care. Miami satisfies this criteria. Florida State does not. Fatal problem: Miami is hosting this game in their half-empty rent-a-stadium. Fun.
- USC @ Stanford (ABC, 8:00pm ET). You west coasters get the better game. I’d much rather watch Harbaugh’s team of Midwest-styled bullies rough up USC again. You may remember last year’s game. Aside from just beating Pete Carroll’s nose inside his skull, Harbaugh went for a 2pt conversion late into the game to get to an even 50. He failed, but got a late touchdown anyways to culminate the 55-21 rout. It was delightful, and I’d love to see it again.