Minor League (non-SEC) Schedule, Week 5
Oklahoma @ Notre Dame: 2:30 p.m., NBC
Here's your game of the week. People seem to be overlooking an Oklahoma team that is just now getting to the meat of its schedule. Sooners QB Blake Bell isn't the most technically polished thrower in the Big 12, but he's a hell of a lot of fun to watch. On the other side of the ball, Notre Dame is motivated to try to win back some of the national respect it lost after dropping games to Alabama and Michigan. The Irish aren't particularly great at any one facet of the game, though... so it probably won't happen this week.
Stanford @ Washington State: 9 p.m., ESPN2
Since losing to Auburn in the season opener, Wazzu has upset Southern Cal on the road and destroyed two cupcakes at home. The Cougars still haven't made that leap to Pac-12 contender, but that could all change with a strong showing against Stanford this weekend. The Cardinal are ranked fifth nationally and are looking for no less than a birth in the BCS Championship Game. This game will be a fascinating contrast in styles: Leach likes to pass 50 times a game, while Stanford only lets tight ends play football. Boring, effective, smashmouth football versus a new-wave aerial spread attack.
Arizona @ Washington: 6 p.m., FOX
Washington is an intriguing team. The Huskies have certainly impressed thus far, but no one is quite sure how good they are. Arizona and Washington are actually pretty similar squads that like to run the ball right at a team. If Washington wins this game, it'll just keep climbing those polls. The prize? Stanford and Oregon in back-to-back weeks. You want the spotlight, UDub? You got it!
Wisconsin @ Ohio State: 7 p.m., ABC
If not for an a ridiculously botched end-of-game scenario, Wisconsin would be undefeated. The Badgers are still a physical team that wants to run eleventy times a game -- and has done so pretty successfully so far. Ohio State seems to be the class of the Big Ten, and outside of a trip to Northwestern, the Buckeyes should sleepwalk to an undefeated season if they can take out the Badgers. The Buckeyes' only problem: deciding which of their two GREAT quarterbacks starts from here on out. "What a terrible problem to have," said no one.
Southern California @ Arizona State: 9:30 p.m., ESPN2
You know that guy at your work who everyone hates? You know, the one with the inexplicably hot wife who keeps getting promotions DESPITE being an insufferable and incompetent douchebag? Well, that's Lane Kiffin. Deliciously, the football gods have decided that enough is enough and have sent the Trojans into a tailspin -- despite having an embarrassing amount of talent on the roster. Arizona State is a good team at home, so I fully expect Lane Kiffin's seat to get even hotter Saturday night.
Sorry ladies, Kliff Kingsbury is off this weekend -- probably working on his smolder. Don't forget to check back in on Friday for your weekend SEC preview.