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Weekend Game Guide: Running out of chances


Michigan v Illinois Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Week nine of the college football season is upon us, and it’s getting to be crunch time. If teams across the college football landscape want to be in their conference races at the end of the season, they must start winning big games.

B1G Games to Watch

No. 13 Wisconsin vs No. 3 Ohio State. A bit of the shine came off this matchup between the Ohio State Buckeyes and Wisconsin Badgers after last week when Wisconsin was upset by Illinois, but this is still likely a preview of the Big Ten Championship game in Indianapolis later this year. Ohio State owns the No. 5 offense and the No. 1 defense in the SP+. Wisconsin boasts the No. 22 offense and the No. 2 defense. If the Badger defense can bottle up Justin Fields and J.K. Dobbins, Wisconsin has a chance in this one. If not, Ohio State will add a quality win to its resume. This game kicks off at Noon on Saturday on Fox.

No. 8 Notre Dame vs No. 19 Michigan. The other Top-25 matchup involving a Big Ten team this week, Michigan and Notre Dame is yet another marquee opportunity for the Wolverines this season. Last week in Weekend Game Guide I said, “There comes a time in every season when you just have to win, and many teams—including Michigan—are there” Well that’s still true, and Michigan just has to win this game. Fortunately for the Wolverines, the SP+ actually has them favored in this matchup—owing mostly to Notre Dame’s defense being ranked No. 35. If Don Brown’s defense can keep a lid on the Fighting Irish offense, Michigan has a good chance in this one. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday on ABC.

National Games to Watch

No. 9 Auburn vs No. 2 LSU. The only Top-10 matchup of the weekend, this game between the Auburn Tigers and LSU Tigers will be one of strengths. Auburn boasts the No. 2 defense in the SP+, but only the No. 28 offense. LSU owns the No. 2 offense in the SP+, but only the No. 29 defense. Which will prevail? Only time will tell. Regardless, the winner of this game puts themselves on a collision course with Alabama for the SEC East, so it’s fair to expect plenty of fireworks in this one. Kickoff is on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. on CBS.

No. 15 Texas vs TCU. Despite only Texas being ranked in the Top-25, this matchup between the Longhorns and the TCU Horned Frogs promises to be a closely contested affair. TCU may have lost three of their past four, but two of those games were against ranked teams. Texas, on the other hand, is coming off a close win over Kansas—who TCU decimated two weeks ago. The Longhorns’ defense also leaves a lot to be desired, checking in at No. 77 in the SP+. Vegas has this as a one point game, and the SP+ does as well. If Auburn and LSU isn’t your cup of tea in the 3:30 p.m. slot, this game is slated for the same time on Fox.

The Grid

Just because we’ve highlighted the games above doesn’t mean they’re the only ones on TV this weekend. Below, we have a list of every Big Ten and Top-25 game taking place this weekend. All games take place on Saturday, unless noted.

Big Ten

Matchup Time TV Streaming
Matchup Time TV Streaming
No. 20 Iowa vs Northwestern 12:00 p.m. ESPN2
No. 13 Wisconsin vs No. 3 Ohio State 12:00 p.m. Fox
Illinois vs Purdue 12:00 p.m. BTN
Liberty vs Rutgers 12:00 p.m. BTN
No. 6 Penn State vs Michigan State 3:30 p.m. ABC
Indiana vs Nebraska 3:30 p.m. BTN
Maryland vs No. 17 Minnesota 3:30 p.m. ESPN
No. 8 Notre Dame vs No. 19 Michigan 7:30 p.m. ABC
Maize n Brew

Top-25 (Thursday)

Matchup Time TV Streaming
Matchup Time TV Streaming
No. 16 SMU vs Houston 7:30 p.m. ESPN
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Top-25 (Saturday)

Matchup Time TV Streaming
Matchup Time TV Streaming
No. 5 Oklahoma vs Kansas State 12:00 p.m. ABC
No. 21 Appalachian State vs South Alabama 12:00 p.m. ESPNU
No. 9 Auburn vs No. 2 LSU 3:30 p.m. CBS
No. 15 Texas vs TCU 3:30 p.m. Fox
Oklahoma State vs No. 23 Iowa State 3:30 p.m. FS1
Arkansas vs No. 1 Alabama 7:00 p.m. ESPN
Boston College vs No. 4 Clemson 7:30 p.m. ACCN
No. 24 Arizona State vs UCLA 7:30 p.m. PACN
California vs No. 12 Utah 10:00 p.m. FS1
Washington State vs No. 11 Oregon 10:30 p.m. ESPN
Maize n Brew

What games will you be watching this weekend? Sound off in the comments with the game and why.