Welcome back to the College Football Weekly Buffet here at SB Nation.
Every week, I break down the weekend schedule, separating the tasty morsels from the leftovers with the help of SB Nation's college bloggers. By the time you wake up Saturday morning, grab your plate and head for the food line, you'll already know exactly what you're going to chow down on.
So let's find out what looks tasty and what might be worth pushing to the side of your plate in this weekend's college football buffet (All times are Eastern).
GIVE ME A HEAPING HELPING
1 LSU @ 2 Alabama (8PM CBS) - But then again, you already knew that. The basic calculus here is simple: the winner likely brings home a national championship that will be immortalized forever, the loser will fall just short of the ultimate prize and takes the regret to the grave. It's been a dream season for LSU QB Jarrett Lee, not bad for a guy who only found out he'd be the starter a week before the season started.
No. 9 South Carolina @ No. 7 Arkansas (7:15 ESPN) - The big story right now for Carolina's defense is the uncertain status of spur Antonio Allen. Meanwhile, are the Hogs on the verge of another November Surge?
I'LL HAVE A SCOOP OF THAT, PLEASE
No. 14 Kansas State @ No. 3 Oklahoma State (8PM ABC/ESPN2) - With the shine off the Wildcats, can Bill Snyder still work some magic this season? If they thought Oklahoma was tough, the Cowboys are downright scary.
Louisville @ No. 24 West Virginia (Noon Big East Network) - The Louisville Cheer & Dance squads will be attending the game, after all. Thank God. They'll get a chance to watch Mountaineers like Doug Rigg up close and personal.
I'LL TASTE IT FIRST...
USF @ Rutgers (7PM ESPN3.com) - Rutgers finds themselves in familiar territory at this point of the season. With the offense sputtering, Skip Holtz is going to throw some freshman into the fire (not literally) this week.
Cincinnati @ Pittsburgh (7PM ESPNU) - The Bearcats control their own destiny in the Big East, which usually means they're going to lose. Despite a 4-4 record two-thirds of the way into the season, Pitt still has a chance to win the Big East title.
No. 4 Stanford @ Oregon State (3:30 ABC) - It's not a question of if the Cardinal will beat the Beavers, it's whether or not they'll shut them out again. OSU fans are wondering if it's time for a changing of the guard at the QB coach position.
Texas A&M @ No. 6 Oklahoma (3:30 ABC/ESPN2) - If this Oklahoma team plays to their abilities Saturday against Texas A&M, they win and likely win comfortably. Meanwhile, Aggie fans are hoping A&M can right the ship that's started sinking.
Vanderbilt @ Florida (Noon SEC Network) - The Commodores haven't won in The Swamp since 1945. They've got a shot this year in spite of their record. Losses to Arkansas and Georgia were by a combined eight points.
I'LL KEEP THAT IN MIND FOR THE NEXT TRIP
Notre Dame @ Wake Forest (8PM ABC/ESPN2) - Wake Forest's athletic department is billing this game the biggest in the history of BB&T field. The Irish are clinging to BCS hopes but they'll need to win out for a chance.
North Carolina @ North Carolina State (12:30 ACC Network) - Things got chippy this week between the two head coaches. The Tar Heels still have ACC Championship Game hopes but they need this win first.
I DON'T KNOW...SMELLS FUNNY...
No. 19 Arizona State @ UCLA (7:30 VS) - UCLA fans are freaking out over the state of the Bruins football program. Meanwhile, Sun Devil fans just want to know what uniform their team is wearing this week.
No. 25 Southern Mississippi @ East Carolina (4PM CSS) - If not for a six-point loss to Marshall back in early September the Golden Eagles would be perfect on the year.
Northwestern @ No. 10 Nebraska (3:30 BTN) - The Wildcats have basked in the glory of beating Indiana for six full days now, but that time is over. The Huskers might not be able to out-smart the Cats but they should be able to beat the snot out of them on a football field.
Virginia @ Maryland (12:30 ACC Network) - A couple of weeks ago, the Hoos upset Georgia Tech, and things were looking up. Then the Hoos were outplayed by a not-really-all-that-good NCSt team, and things were looking bad. Then, last week, the Hoos beat Miami, and now things are looking up again. How will the Border War turn out for them?
Minnesota @ No. 17 Michigan State (Noon BTN) - Like last year, Michigan State is coming off a definitive loss on the road back to East Lansing to play Minnesota. Not good considering the Gophers are a rejuvenated team coming off the win over Iowa.
Syracuse @ Connecticut (Noon ESPNU) - It's The Paul Pasqualoni Bowl. With a win, Syracuse becomes bowl eligible. With a win, perhaps UConn fans will be able to pull themselves away from UConn basketball for a second.
NO THANKS, PLATE'S FULL
No. 5 Boise State @ UNLV (10PM CBS Sports Network) - Who cares about the game itself, we need to talk about this Big East nonsense.
Middle Tennessee @ Tennessee (7PM SEC Network) - Can the Vols still make it to a bowl game? Obviously, losing here would end that discussion.
No. 13 Houston @ UAB (7PM CBS Sports Network) - Houston continues their undefeated quest to play in the Liberty Bowl with another CUSA match-up.
New Mexico State @ No. 18 Georgia (12:30 CSS) - New Mexico St. stands at 3-5 overall, but that trio of triumphs has come against the likes of the Minnesota Golden Gophers (2-6), the Idaho Vandals (1-7), and the New Mexico Lobos (0-8).
Indiana @ Ohio State (Noon BTN) - Even at 1-8, the Hoosiers season is going to get worse before it gets better. Still, despite losing steady and effective Ben Chappell, their two-year starting quarterback, the Hoosiers' offense ranks 7th in the Big Ten in total offense, ahead of Michigan State, Ohio State, and Penn State.