Saturday’s college football on TV

September 28, 2012
TODAY’S TV GAMES
NOON
Noon Illinois vs. Penn StateESPN
Noon Iowa vs. Minnesota ESPN2
Noon Miami vs. North Carolina State ESPNU
Noon Georgia Tech vs. Middle Tennessee Comcast SportsNet
Noon Connecticut vs. Buffalo MASN
Noon West Virginia vs. Baylor FX
Noon Northwestern vs. Indiana Big Ten Network
Noon Army vs. Stony Brook CBS Sports Network
Noon Dartmouth vs. Pennsylvania NBC Sports Network
Noon Kent State vs. Ball State pay-per-view
Noon Texas A&M vs. Arkansas pay-per-view
12:30 Wake Forest vs. Duke WDCA-20, WJZ-13

With ninth-ranked West Virginia making its Big 12 debut against No. 25 Baylor on Saturday, the WVU student government released a video on YouTube this week, reminding students that couches are “for sitting, and sleeping, and losing the remote. . . . Burning a couch isn’t cool.”

It’s unclear whether a win would warrant such a display of furn-icide, but the Mountaineers and their fans are plenty excited about their first Big 12 Conference game. And all flammable material should be kept well clear of both teams’ scorching offenses: Even without RGIII, Baylor is averaging 51.3 points and the Mountaineers are putting up 47.3. When you consider that this is one of only two games Saturday featuring two top 25 teams, it’s definitely worth watching.

afterNOON
3:15 Purdue vs. MarshallBig Ten Network
3:30 Virginia Tech vs. Cincinnati ESPNU
3:30 Navy vs. San Jose State CBS Sports Network
3:30 Georgia vs. Tennessee WUSA-9, WJZ-13
3:30 Michigan State vs. Ohio State WJLA-7, WMAR-2
3:30 North Carolina vs. Idaho Comcast SportsNet
3:30 Boston College vs. Clemson ESPN2
3:30 Houston vs. Rice WDCA-20
3:30 Florida A&M vs. Southern NBC Sports Network
3:30 South Alabama vs. Troy pay-per-view
3:30 Bowling Green vs. Rhode Island pay-per-view
4 California vs. Arizona State FX

Because Saturday’s dismal slate of games comes off as a cruel prank by the schedule-makers, ESPN basically threw up its hands in exasperation before sending its “College Gameday” circus to East Lansing, Mich., for Michigan State-Ohio State. The 14th-ranked Buckeyes struggled to beat UAB last weekend, while the No. 20 Spartans trailed Eastern Michigan until late in the third quarter of their 23-7 win.

There are two players worth your attention in this one, and that’s about it. Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller is 16th nationally in rushing (110.3 yards per game), while Michigan State running back Le’Veon Bell is third (152.5). When one of those two players doesn’t have the ball, look away or risk crippling drowsiness.

Night
6 South Florida vs. Florida StateESPN
7 LSU vs. Towson ESPNU
7 Kentucky vs. South Carolina ESPN2
7 William & Mary vs. Georgia State Comcast SportsNet
7:50 Oklahoma State vs. Texas WTTG-5, WBFF-45
8 Nebraska vs. Wisconsin WJLA-7, WMAR-2
8 Southern Miss vs. Louisville CBS Sports Network
8 New Mexico State vs. Texas-San Antonio pay-per-view
9:15 Alabama vs. Mississippi ESPN
10:30 Washington State vs. Oregon ESPN2

Goodness, this day just . . . will not . . . end.

South Florida Coach Skip Holtz told the Tampa Bay Times this week that looking ahead to Saturday night’s game against No. 4 Florida State is “kind of like looking down the barrel of a shotgun.” That may have been an understatement, somehow. The Seminoles are simply wrecking opponents on both sides of the ball (they rank fourth in total offense and second in total defense), and quarterback EJ Manuel has introduced himself to the Heisman conversation by completing 69 of 94 passes for 905 yards and eight touchdowns.

No. 12 Texas put up 66 points on Ole Miss last Saturday, its most since 2005. The Longhorns now look to prove that they’re again a Big 12 player after a multi-year siesta against Oklahoma State and Coach Mike Gundy (now 45, but still a man).

— Matt Bonesteel

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