By Ryan Mayer, CBS Local Sports
This is the last weekend of football before we start the official College Football Playoff Rankings next Tuesday night. Many of the top teams are off but there are a few that have some tough match-ups this weekend. Without further ado, here’s the games you don’t want to miss this weekend.
Thursday 7:30 PM ET (Fox Sports 1)- West Virginia at #5 TCU
The Mountaineers are just 3-3 on the season and 0-3 in Big 12 play, but they can put up points. This season they’re averaging 36 PPG and will be facing a TCU defense that has been decimated by injuries. West Virginia probably won’t win, but they can at least make this game entertaining with their offense. Plus, this is a chance for you to check out Heisman hopeful Trevone Boykin and his two big weapons in WR Josh Doctson and RB Aaron Green.
Saturday 3:30 pm ET (CBS)- Georgia at #11 Florida
I’ll make this simple. This is a battle for the SEC East division. Georgia sits at 3-2 in conference while Florida is 4-1. If Georgia wins and wins out, they would take the division by virtue of tiebreaker over the Gators. Florida is coming off a bye week following a loss to LSU their last time out. Georgia meanwhile is coming off a win in a defensive struggle against Missouri. It’s billed as the World’s Largest Cocktail Party and takes place in neutral site Jacksonville. Jim McElwain is looking to make a statement in his first year as head coach at Florida, this is his best opportunity.
Saturday 3:30 pm ET (ABC/ESPN2)- #3 Clemson at NC State
A good old fashioned rivalry game between a couple of Carolina schools features a Tigers squad that is angling to make the Playoff. Heisman hopeful DeShaun Watson and company are coming off a 58-0 drubbing of Miami last week. The Wolfpack on the other hand will be looking for their first win against Clemson since 2011 when they won 37-13 at home. This game also happens to be set to be played at NC State. Upset?
Saturday 8 pm ET (ABC)- #9 Notre Dame at #21 Temple
Look I’ll be up front about this, I’ll be at the stadium for this game. I’ll be at College Gameday from Independence Mall on Saturday morning. This is the biggest game in the Owls program history. The Irish boast one of the better rushing attacks in the nation behind CJ Prosise. They’ll face an Owls defense that is top 10 nationally against the run, giving up fewer than 100 yards per game. Will the Owls have the horses to be able to keep up with the Irish? Honestly, for folks that are fans of the Temple program, it doesn’t matter. Their team is getting the national spotlight. That rarely happens for them.
Saturday 10:30 pm ET (ESPN)- #8 Stanford at Washington State
The Cardinal have been absolutely rolling since losing the first game of the season to Northwestern. The Cardinal are averaging 42 PPG in their six wins, thanks in large part to Christian McCaffrey. McCaffrey is averaging 176.7 combined rushing and receiving yards per game. He’s a dark horse Heisman candidate. The Cougars have a massive offensive weapon of their own in QB Luke Falk who has really taken to head coach Mike Leach’s “Air Raid” offense. Falk is 3rd in the nation in passing yards with 2,885 and second in passing yards per game with 412.1. Late kickoff, but worth staying up to watch.
Ryan Mayer is an Associate Producer for CBS Local Sports. Ryan lives in NY but comes from Philly and life as a Philly sports fan has made him cynical. Anywhere sports are being discussed, that’s where you’ll find him.