Saturday Meal Plan: Your Week 8 TV Viewer's Guide

By Tom Fornelli | College Football Writer

The Saturday Meal Plan fills you in on what to watch, when to watch and where to watch every Saturday during the college football season.

After last week's schedule saw all the marquee games taking place early in the day, we're back on a normal schedule this week. However, while Clemson and Florida State in prime time are the biggest draw this weekend, as it's a matchup of two top-five teams, there are a couple other games that are more than worth your time on Saturday.

Particularly during the Lunch shift when you're going to need to have your remote control at the ready, and your thumb hovering over the "Last Channel" button.

BREAKFAST

No. 11 South Carolina at Tennessee -- ESPN, Noon (All times Eastern)

Last time we saw Tennessee playing a conference game in Knoxville it nearly knocked off Georgia. Will the Volunteers actually get that signature win for Butch Jones this week? Well, I don't know, but I love how feisty Steve Spurrier gets during Tennessee week. He isn't even at Florida any more, but that's not stopping him from saying things like "I've coached [at Neyland Stadium] more than some of their head coaches." I didn't see him say it, but I guarantee you he tilted his head to the side a bit while saying it.

No. 15 Georgia at Vanderbilt -- CBS, Noon

The injuries finally caught up to Georgia last week, and based on what Mark Richt said on Thursday, the Bulldogs are likely going to be dealing with the same problems this week. Which means its possible that the Commies could pick up their first SEC win of the season. So I guess that's the silver lining to all these Georgia injuries. They make Georgia games that much more interesting.

No. 16 Texas Tech at West Virginia -- Fox Sports 1, Noon

I don't think I'm alone in having the opinion that the Big 12 just doesn't have a great team this season, which is bad for the Big 12, but good for you, the college football viewing fan. And that's because anything can happen in a Big 12 game. Personally, I have no idea how this game is going to play out, all I know is that I want a Kliff Kingsbury bobblehead doll.

TCU at No. 21 Oklahoma State -- Fox, Noon

Everything I said about the Big 12 in the previous game applies here as well. I don't think TCU is going to beat Oklahoma State, but I didn't think Oklahoma State was going to lose on the road against West Virginia, either.

Minnesota at Northwestern -- ESPN2, Noon

This game just seems depressing right now, and considering both Kain Colter and Venric Mark are questionable to play, it's only getting worse. Which means this will probably be the single-most exciting game of the day.

Purdue at Michigan State -- Big Ten Network, Noon

I know I've said this for a few weeks now, but seriously, do not watch Purdue football this season if you don't have to. It's horrifying.

Connecticut at Cincinnati -- ESPNU, Noon

Why?

LUNCH

Iowa at No. 4 Ohio State -- ABC/ESPN2, 3:30 p.m.

I thought this game was going to be a lot more interesting before I saw Iowa get its butt kicked against Michigan State a few weeks ago. Now I'm expecting Ohio State to blow the Hawkeyes out, but it should be noted I usually expect the Buckeyes to blow other Big Ten teams out, and they seldom do.

No. 24 Auburn at No. 7 Texas A&M -- CBS, 3:30 p.m.

This is one of the two games that will truly command your attention during this shift. If you haven't seen Auburn play yet this season, you should know that the Tigers are much improved under Gus Malzahn. You should also know that Auburn's rushing offense combined with Texas A&M's run defense should lead to a game that is going to lead to a very interesting fourth quarter that will feature Johnny Manziel running all over the place and doing things that will either win or lose the game. It should be fun.

No. 9 UCLA at No. 13 Stanford -- ABC/ESPN2, 3:30 p.m.

And this is the other game you should be watching. I know a lot of you don't spend a lot of time watching the Pac-12 because of the west coast start times, but I'm telling you, the Pac-12 is very good this season. And not only are the teams good, but they're playing interesting games week in and week out. For sheer college football entertainment value, there probably isn't a better conference in the country to watch.

No. 18 Oklahoma at Kansas -- ESPN, 3:30 p.m.

I have no idea what to expect from Oklahoma on a week-to-week basis, but I just know that if I was Kansas I wouldn't want to be facing the Sooners coming off a loss to Texas. Because somebody's got to pay for it.

Indiana at Michigan -- Big Ten Network, 3:30 p.m.

People have been jumping off the Michigan bandwagon at an amazing pace since last week's loss to Penn State, but I'm not ready to give up on the Wolverines just yet. If they lose at home to Indiana, however....

Maryland at Wake Forest -- ESPNU, 3:30 p.m.

This is what happens when Clemson and Florida State are playing each other, leaving the rest of the ACC to have to play the rest of the ACC.

Brigham Young at Houston -- ESPNNews, 3:30 p.m.

Houston is a team that you haven't watched yet this season, but could easily end up in a BCS bowl this January. It's a good team. I'm not saying watch the entire game, but maybe familiarize yourself with this squad.

DINNER

No. 20 Washington at Arizona State -- Pac-12 Network, 6 p.m.

Washington has lost a bit of its luster after consecutive losses to Stanford and Oregon, but it has a chance to get some of it back against Arizona State this week. And Arizona State finds itself in a similar position. This is one of those Pac-12 games I was talking about earlier. It may not have a huge national impact, but it'll probably be worth your time.

Arkansas at No. 1 Alabama -- ESPN, 7 p.m.

That 3-0 start to Bret Bielema's tenure at Arkansas feels like a long time ago, doesn't it? Now the Razorbacks are coming off a 45-point loss at home to South Carolina and traveling to Tuscaloosa to take on the Tide. I don't think it'll be an enjoyable trip.

No. 6 LSU at Ole Miss -- ESPN2, 7 p.m.

Ole Miss is a team in need of a bye week right now. In the last three weeks they've played Alabama, Auburn and Texas A&M, now they're banged up and have to face LSU. My guess is that the tailgating festivities outside the stadium will be a lot more interesting than anything taking place on the field.

Iowa State at No. 12 Baylor -- ESPNU, 7 p.m.

The unstoppable Baylor offense was grounded a bit against Kansas State last week -- it's nice to have an offense that considers 35 points an off week -- and will look to get back on track against Iowa State. Now, on paper this seems like a likely blowout, but as I mentioned earlier, this is the Big 12 and just about anything can happen. Plus Iowa State has been feisty the last few weeks against Texas Tech and Texas, so they might make a game of this.

Southern California at Notre Dame -- NBC, 7:30 p.m.

I can't remember the last time a game between USC and Notre Dame got as little hype as this year's matchup is. I know that neither team is ranked, but it just still seems weird. So now you know this will end up being an amazing game that nobody watched.

No. 25 Wisconsin at Illinois -- Big Ten Network, 8 p.m.

Wisconsin is the second best team in the Big Ten and had its game against Ohio State been played in Madison this season, I might be considering it the best team in the conference right now. Illinois hasn't won a Big Ten game in over two years, losing 15 straight. It's hard to see that streak ending before it reaches 16 games.

Nevada at Boise State -- CBS Sports Network, 8 p.m.

This one is for all you old school WAC fans out there who just aren't ready to say goodbye. Yes, the conference is gone, but the Mountain West has done a pretty nice job of keeping the memories alive this season. And these two have played some classics before.

No. 5 Florida State at No. 3 Clemson -- ABC, 8 p.m.

Without question this is the biggest game of the week. From everything we've seen from the rest of the ACC, odds are this will serve as the ACC Championship, and a win could catapult one of these teams into the national title game. So, yeah, you should probably be watching it.

LATE NIGHT SNACKS

Washington State at No. 2 Oregon -- Fox Sports 1, 10 p.m.

I really don't know whether Alabama is the best team in the country or if it's Oregon. I don't. Arguments could be made for either. You watch this game and see if you can decide.

Utah at Arizona -- Pac-12 Network, 10 p.m.

Another under-the-radar type game in the Pac-12 that could be very interesting. If you get the Pac-12 Network, this one will keep you entertained.

Oregon State at California -- ESPN2, 10:30 p.m.

There are really only two bad teams in the Pac-12, and Cal is one of them. Meanwhile, while most people only remember Oregon State opening the season with a loss to Eastern Washington, it's played very well since then and quarterback Sean Mannion is putting up some eye-popping numbers.

 
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