clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2017 college football Week 1 TV/streaming schedule guide: What to watch, when

When does college football start? The opening weekend is actually two weekends. Here's how to watch the best of seven days of football.

College football is back, as of Aug. 26. Unless you want Power 5 vs. Power 5 games, in which case it's Aug. 31. Or unless you only acknowledge Saturdays, which would make it Sept. 2. And there are a bunch of other upcoming days with college football on them, all scattered throughout there.

Either way, one of the weirdest opening schedules in all of sports is upon us. The early bonus week is back, with more than a half-dozen middlin' games on, but things really start to get rolling on Thursday the 26th. Week 1 doesn't officially end until Labor Day, three days before Week 2 begins. It's a lot!

Below, every FBS game scheduled to be televised (or, in spots where nothing else is going on at the time, a few FCS-only games), sorted according to a subjective assessment of watchability. TV times and streaming info are included for each.

Hope you like college football, because here comes a heckload of it.

Saturday, Aug. 26 college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football
Noon FAMU vs. Texas Southern
ESPNU, WatchESPN
2:30 Oregon State at CSU
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
3 Portland State at BYU
ESPN, WatchESPN
6 Hawaii at UMass
NESN
6:30 Chattanooga vs. Jax State
ESPN, WatchESPN
7 Colgate at Cal Poly
ESPNU, WatchESPN
7:30 USF at San Jose State
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
10 Stanford vs. Rice
ESPN, WatchESPN

Let's start off nice and easy. Nothing on this day is essential, but you'll feel lame if you aren't standing and saluting during the kickoff of the season's first Division I and the season's first FBS vs. FBS game.

USF-SJSU is a weird road test for Charlie Strong's Bulls, expected by many to be the country's best mid-major, and Stanford-Rice in Australia gets to go up against Mayweather-McGregor. At least CFB's bizarre mismatch is free to watch!

Sunday, Aug. 27 college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football

Richmond-Sam Houston State was going to be this evening, but it's been postponed because of Hurricane Harvey.

Thursday, Aug. 31 college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football
6 FIU at UCF
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
6:30 Presbyterian at Wake Forest
ACC Network, WatchESPN
7 Buffalo at Minnesota
BTN, BTN2Go
Austin Peay at Cincinnati
WatchESPN
Rhode Island at CMU
WatchESPN
Tenn. State at Georgia State
WatchESPN
Elon at Toledo
WatchESPN
7:30 Tulsa at Oklahoma State
FS1, Fox Sports Go
Holy Cross at UConn
WatchESPN
8 Ohio State at Indiana
ESPN, WatchESPN
FAMU at Arkansas
SEC Network, WatchESPN
9 Sac. State at Idaho
WatchESPN
ULM at Memphis
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
10:30 NMSU at Arizona State
Pac-12 Networks

For most people, this will count as Opening Night.

College GameDay is setting up shop at Indiana for the season's first Power 5 conference game, with Kevin Wilson as Ohio State's OC against his old team. OSU's favored big, but this should have some atmosphere to it.

If you need a pregame snack, P.J. Fleck becoming a meme on Minnesota's sideline or Tulsa-Oklahoma State possibly reaching 70 points by halftime should do it.

Friday, Sept. 1 college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football
6 Fordham at Army
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
6:30 Charlotte at EMU
WatchESPN
7 Cent. Conn. at Syracuse
ACC Network, WatchESPN
8 Colorado vs. Colorado State
Pac-12 Networks
Navy at FAU
ESPNU, WatchESPN
Washington at Rutgers
FS1, Fox Sports Go
9 Utah State at Wisconsin
ESPN, WatchESPN
9:30 Boston College at NIU
CBSSN, CBSSports.com

The reigning Pac-12 South champs vs. another team that might be the country's best mid-major, and it's a state rivalry game? I think you should watch that.

Elsewhere, wildly different head coaches clash when large, golden boy Lane Kiffin welcomes the eternally overachieving Ken Niumatalolo, and I don't expect Rutgers to give UW much of a fight, but that's a Playoff team you can watch on a Friday.

Saturday, Sept. 2 college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football
Noon Wyoming at Iowa
BTN, BTN2Go
Missouri State at Missouri
SEC Network, WatchESPN
Maryland at Texas
FS1, Fox Sports Go
Ball State at Illinois
BTN, BTN2Go
Bowling Green at Michigan State
ESPNU, WatchESPN
Akron at Penn State
ABC, WatchESPN
Kent State at Clemson
ESPN, WatchESPN
12:20 Cal at North Carolina
ACC Network, WatchESPN
12:30 Bethune-Cookman at Miami
ACC Network, WatchESPN
1 YSU at Pitt
ACC Network, WatchESPN
2 Portland State at Oregon State
Pac-12 Networks
VMI at Air Force
WatchESPN
3 NC State vs. South Carolina
ESPN, WatchESPN
3:30 Florida vs. Michigan
ABC, WatchESPN
Temple at Notre Dame
NBC, NBCSports.com
UTEP at Oklahoma
Fox, Fox Sports Go
Nevada at Northwestern
BTN, BTN2Go
William & Mary at Virginia
ACC Network, WatchESPN
3:45 Troy at Boise State
ESPNU, WatchESPN
4 Kentucky at Southern Miss
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
Stony Brook at USF
WatchESPN
EWU at Texas Tech
FSN, Fox Sports Go
Charleston S. at Mississippi State
SEC Network, WatchESPN
5:15 WMU at USC
Pac-12 Networks
6 JMU at ECU
WatchESPN
NC Central at Duke
ACC Network, WatchESPN
Albany at Old Dominion
WatchESPN
6:15 Appalachian State at Georgia
ESPN, WatchESPN
7 Liberty at Baylor
FS2, Fox Sports Go
Hampton at Ohio
WatchESPN
SE Louisiana at UL-Lafayette
WatchESPN
Houston Baptist at Texas State
WatchESPN
SE Missouri State at Kansas
JTV
Stephen F. Austin at SMU
WatchESPN
UMass at Coastal Carolina
WatchESPN
7:10 Central Ark. at Kansas State
K-statehd.tv
7:30 Georgia Southern at Auburn
SEC Network, WatchESPN
South Alabama at Ole Miss
ESPNU, WatchESPN
Louisville vs. Purdue
Fox, Fox Sports Go
8 Alabama vs. Florida State
ABC, WatchESPN
Arkansas State at Nebraska
BTN, BTN2Go
Jackson State at TCU
Fox, Fox Sports Go
Vanderbilt at MTSU
CBSSN, CBSSports.com
Northern Iowa at Iowa State
Cyclones.tv
Grambling at Tulane
WatchESPN
8:15 Southern Utah at Oregon
Pac-12 Networks
9:30 BYU vs. LSU
ESPN, WatchESPN
10:30 Mont. St. at Washington State
FS1, Fox Sports Go
11 NAU at Arizona
Pac-12 Networks

OH HELL YEAH WE'RE BACK

Things start slow, as is custom, and Cal-UNC should be on your radar just because it's gonna go way wrong.

Florida-Michigan in JerryWorld is the season's first actual big game. It might not have postseason ramifications, but it'll teach us a lot about each team's offense.

After that, the biggest opening game in the history of the sport arrives. Six things to know about the tactics in Bama-FSU, and why the Noles have a shot.

BYU-LSU in Houston should be a great closeout game, just thumping everyone off to bed.

Sunday, Sept. 3 college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football
1:30 SC State at Southern
ESPN2, WatchESPN
6:30 Virginia Tech vs. West Virginia
ABC, WatchESPN
Texas A&M at UCLA
Fox, Fox Sports Go

The rule of the schedule grid: only one WATCH THIS game at a time. I'm picking the Black Diamond Trophy rivalry over A&M-UCLA. For one thing, it's a rivalry. For another, it should have a much hotter crowd than the L.A. game, with rowdy VT and WVU fanbases both nearby. (And for another, VT and WVU are ranked, unlike A&M or UCLA.)

Labor Day college football schedule

Time (p.m. ET) WATCH THIS Maybe watch It's football
8 Georgia Tech vs. Tennessee
ESPN, WatchESPN

Like Bama-FSU, this is at Atlanta's new origami bomb of a stadium. It'll be full, loud, and contentious, with GT striving to hit a 4-0 streak against the SEC East and UT trying to keep Butch Jones from getting fired. What fun!