Week three of the college football season was great. We saw barnburners and games go down to the final play. That may happen again this week, but this doesn't look like it will be a classic weekend of college football. But hey, we slogged through a whole offseason for this, and I'll be damned if I don't watch.
As always, we'll be grouping games together by day and time slot -- Saturday Lunch, Afternoon, Evening, and Night -- and ranking those games in tiers by anticipated relative viewing quality: Best option, Plan B, Keep it in mind, and Break in case of emergency. Personal fandom obviously can make a difference, but this is trying to be as objective as possible.
Note: We've removed games that have already happened.
|12 p.m. ET||Florida A&M||at||4 Ohio State||Big Ten Network|
|12 p.m. ET||FIU||at||7 Louisville||WHAS, ESPN Regional|
|12 p.m. ET||Wake Forest||at||Army||CBSSN|
|12 p.m. ET||Toledo||at||Central Michigan||ESPN Regional, ESPN3.com|
|12 p.m. ET||North Carolina||at||Georgia Tech||ESPN|
|12 p.m. ET||Louisiana Tech||at||Kansas||FS1|
|12 p.m. ET||Vanderbilt||at||Massachusetts||ESPN News|
|12 p.m. ET||San Jose State||at||Minnesota||ESPN 2|
|12 p.m. ET||Marshall||at||Virginia Tech||ESPNU|
|12 p.m. ET||Middle Tennessee||at||FAU||CSS, CSN-HOU, BAY|
|12:01 p.m. ET||Western Michigan||at||Iowa||Big Ten Network|
|12:21 p.m. ET||North Texas||at||9 Georgia||SEC Network, MSG|
|12:30 p.m. ET||Pittsburgh||at||Duke||ACC Network|
|12:30 p.m. ET||Tulane||at||Syracuse||RSN, MSG+, FSN-S, FSN-DET|
|1 p.m. ET||Ball State||at||Eastern Michigan||ESPN3.com|
|2 p.m. ET||Jacksonville State||at||Georgia State||ESPN3.com|
|2 p.m. ET||Austin Peay||at||Ohio||ESPN3.com|
|3 p.m. ET||Idaho State||at||17 Washington||Pac-12 Network|
|3 p.m. ET||Panhandle State||at||Montana||Max Media|
|3 p.m. ET||Houston||vs||Rice||FSN-FL, MW, MASN2, MSG+|
|3 p.m. ET||Northwestern State||at||UAB||UABSports.com|
|3 p.m. ET||Stony Brook||at||Villanova||CSN|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Maine||at||18 Northwestern||Big Ten Network|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Tennessee||at||19 Florida||CBS|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Michigan State||at||22 Notre Dame||NBC|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Purdue||at||24 Wisconsin||ABC/ESPN 2|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Murray State||at||Bowling Green||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||West Virginia||vs||Maryland||ESPNU|
|3:30 p.m. ET||South Dakota State||at||Nebraska||Big Ten Network|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Kent State||at||Penn State||Big Ten Network|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Arkansas||at||Rutgers||ESPN|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Utah State||at||USC||ABC/ESPN 2|
|3:30 p.m. ET||VMI||at||Virginia||ESPN3.com|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Delaware State||at||North Dakota State||ND NBC, ESPN3.com|
|4 p.m. ET||ULM||at||20 Baylor||FS1|
|4 p.m. ET||Cincinnati||at||Miami (Ohio)||ESPN3.com|
|4:30 p.m. ET||Arkansas State||at||Memphis||ESPN3.com|
|6 p.m. ET||Bethune-Cookman||at||8 Florida State||ESPN3.com|
|6 p.m. ET||Louisiana-Lafayette||at||Akron||ESPN3.com|
|6 p.m. ET||Lafayette||at||Penn||LSN, ESPN3.com|
|6 p.m. ET||Lehigh||at||Princeton||NBCSN|
|7 p.m. ET||23 Arizona State||at||5 Stanford||FOX|
|7 p.m. ET||Colorado State||at||1 Alabama||ESPN 2|
|7 p.m. ET||Savannah State||at||16 Miami||ESPN3.com|
|7 p.m. ET||SMU||at||10 Texas A&M||ESPNU|
|7 p.m. ET||Texas State||at||25 Texas Tech||FSN-FL, MSG+, SportSouth|
|7 p.m. ET||Eastern Illinois||at||Northern Illinois||ESPN3.com|
|7 p.m. ET||Morgan State||at||Western Kentucky||ESPN3.com|
|7 p.m. ET||Montana State||at||Stephen F. Austin||Max Media|
|7 p.m. ET||Rhode Island||at||William & Mary||CSN|
|7:30 p.m. ET||Troy||at||Mississippi State||FSN-S, SunSports|
|7:30 p.m. ET||Oregon State||at||San Diego State||CBSSN|
|7:45 p.m. ET||Auburn||at||6 LSU||ESPN|
|8 p.m. ET||15 Michigan||at||Connecticut||ABC/ESPN2|
|8 p.m. ET||Missouri||at||Indiana||Big Ten Network|
|8 p.m. ET||Kansas State||at||Texas||ABC/ESPN2|
|8 p.m. ET||UTSA||at||UTEP||FOX College Sports|
|8:05 p.m. ET||Hawaii||at||Nevada||Oceanic PPV|
|9 p.m. ET||Western Illinois||at||UNLV||KWWN|
|10:15 p.m. ET||Wyoming||at||Air Force||ESPNU|
|10:15 p.m. ET||Utah||at||BYU||ESPN 2|
|10:30 p.m. ET||New Mexico St||at||13 UCLA||Pac-12 Network|
|10:30 p.m. ET||Idaho||at||Washington State||Pac-12 Network|
Best option: North Carolina at Georgia Tech
Announcers: Dave Pasch, Brian Griese, and Tom Luginbill
Odds: Georgia Tech -6.5
Weather: Scattered thunderstorms with a high in the mid-70s.
The crown jewel of the early slate is a critical ACC Coastal showdown between the Tar Heels and the Yellow Jackets. Last year, this game featured 118 points and 1,085 yards of offense between the two teams, so let's hope they submit a worthy encore.
Plan B: Florida A&M at Ohio State, FIU at Louisville, North Texas at Georgia
Well that thinned out quickly. All three of these games feature top-10 teams that should easily dispatch overmatched competition. Fans of these programs will be tuning in, and maybe stop by for a second if you like watching kids pull the wings off flies.
Keep it in mind: Marshall at Virginia Tech
The option is there, is all I'm saying. Marshall's offense can be potent, and they're averaging a robust 6.4 yards per play so far this season. Virginia Tech's defense should slow them down quite a bit, but Logan Thomas and the offense -- averaging 4.8 yards per play -- will need to do something in this game.
Break in case of emergency: San Jose State at Minnesota
The Spartans may have a shot at the upset here.
Best option: Utah State at USC
Announcers: Dave Flemming, David Diaz-Infante, and Shelley Smith
Odds: USC -6.5
Weather: Sunny with a high in the upper 70s.
The Aggies have a real chance to beat USC at home, and you'll be upset with yourself if you miss out on seeing Utah State drive another nail into Lane Kiffin's coffin. Chuckie Keeton über alles.
Plan B: Tennessee at Florida, Michigan State at Notre Dame
Just because there's a lot of tradition here doesn't mean these will be any fun to watch.
Keep it in mind: Purdue at Wisconsin, West Virginia at Maryland
Because they're on TV, basically.
Break in case of emergency: Arkansas at Rutgers
Can anyone tell me where John L. Smith is?
Best option: Arizona State at Stanford
Announcers: Gus Johnson, Charles Davis, and Kristina Pink
Odds: Stanford -7.5
Weather: Partly cloudy with a high in the low to mid-70s.
Probably the game of the day? Arizona State escaped with a win over Wisconsin in bizarre fashion last weekend, and Stanford has been coolly and efficiently dispatching foes without showing even the slightest wrinkle in their game plan. The Cardinal will probably start to open up the playbook a little against the Sun Devils, who present a bit more of a challenge than Army. The offensive line and running game of Stanford versus the front seven of Arizona State is going to be the key in this one.
Plan B: Auburn at LSU
Auburn has looked frisky with Gus Malzahn back in control and mashing levers like a mad man, but you could make a plausible case that LSU is the best team in the country this year. These games have been close in recent years, so let's see how well the Tigers can handle the Tigers. Good lord, can the SEC find another team named the Tigers ahahaha oh my God they did.
Keep it in mind: Michigan at UConn, SMU at Texas A&M
Michigan and Texas A&M have interesting matchups, in that they both have to overcome letdowns from the previous weekend. The Wolverines were able to win against Akron despite being taken to the last second at home in Ann Arbor, while the Aggies came up just short against Alabama. They both should win handily this week against UConn and SMU, respectively, but we'll see how it goes.
Break in case of emergency: Colorado State at Alabama
Watch Nick Saban be merciful and let his foot off the gas against former assistant Jim McElwain with a 28-point lead in the second quarter.
Best option: Utah at BYU
Announcers: Mark Jones, Brock Huard, Lewis Johnson
Odds: BYU -7
Weather: Sunny with a high around 80.
Holy War comin'! This is our last chance to see this game until the 2016 season, so soak it in.
Plan B: Wyoming at Air Force
This should be a fairly even game, so if you're up at this time of night, you could do a hell of a lot worse.
Keep it in mind: Idaho at Washington State
You should probably go to bed.
Break in case of emergency: New Mexico State at UCLA
Avert your eyes from this bloodbath.