Do you need something to keep you busy while anxiously awaiting for and/or recovering from Auburn's huge game at A&M this weekend? How about a few non-conference bouts to open your football palate? All times listed are Central.
Minor league (non-SEC) schedule
Central Florida @ (8) Louisville: Friday, 7 p.m., ESPN
Friday night ESPN game? Oh yeah, that's an upset alert. Louisville at home is the obvious favorite here, but Central Florida is not to be taken lightly. The Golden Knights strolled into Happy Valley and defeated Penn State, and only lost to South Carolina by a field goal. If anyone is going to beat Louisville, this might be the team. That's no easy assignment with Teddy Bridgewater slinging the ball all over the field. If Louisville wants to have any chance of sneaking into the BCS Championship Game -- and I mean any chance at all -- it has to start by obliterating Central Florida when everyone's watching. After all, this is the last team with a pulse that the Cardinals will play.
(16) Texas Tech @ West Virginia: 11 a.m., Fox Sports 1
Hey, girl. Don't worry about me and my Red Raiders flying under the radar this season. You know what I'd rather be under? A floral print fleece throw, with you. Here's a quality game plan for you: You, me, "The Notebook" and a bowl of fresh popped kettle corn. My staff wants me to study game film? Well I've got just one message for them.
(9) UCLA @ (13) Stanford: 2:30 p.m., ESPN2/ABC
This will be the game that they keep interrupting the Auburn game to give updates on, and it should be a good one. Behind the arm of Brett Hundley, UCLA has developed into one of the most potent offenses in the country. Stanford's defense is stingy and has a bit of a mean streak. It's downright SEC-esque, at times. Stanford QB Kevin Hogan has been struggling as of late, and he'll have to get back on track quickly if the Cardinal want to stay within shouting distance of the Bruins.
(20) Washington @ Arizona State: 5 p.m., Pac-12 Networks
Washington is a good football team that just happened to have to play Oregon and Stanford back to back. Turns out that's not conducive to maintaining a high national ranking. Arizona State's only conference loss is to Stanford, and the Sun Devils have the potential to make some noise in the Pac-12 over the second half of the season. Both of these teams can score a ton of points, so this may be a really fun game with both teams scoring in the 40s. Too bad it's happening on the Pac-12 Networks, which no self-respecting SEC apologist would subscribe to.
(5) Florida State @ (3) Clemson: 7 p.m., ESPN
Game of the week -- and easily one of the biggest games of the season. The winner of this one has the best chance outside of Oregon to face an undefeated SEC champion in the BCS Championship Game. These teams have been remarkably similar this season. Both are known for their offensive playmakers, but both have won games thanks to stout defensive play. FSU freshman quarterback Jameis Winston has had one of the greatest debuts we've seen in the sport, but traveling to Clemson's version of Death Valley will be his toughest test by far. Clemson is led by eighth-year sophomores* Tajh Boyd and Sammie Watkins. If the Tigers knock off the Seminoles, they will have two victories over teams that were ranked in the top 5 at the time -- and can arguably make the case that they have done more to deserve the No. 1 ranking than any other team. My hatred for Florida State is surpassed only in the ACC by my hatred for Dabo Swinney. I'm not doing the stupid chant, though.
* - Going by memory here.
Don't forget to check back in on Friday for previews of all this week's SEC games.