Viewing recommendations for this weekend, for those of you over-saturated with South Carolina-LSU and Stanford-Notre Dame coverage. *See what we did there?
• Best THIS IS STILL A RIVALRY, CONSARNIT. The Red River Shootout, we would argue, has not lost any of its luster with Texas and Oklahoma both slipping out of the AP top 10. (We would also argue that it'll always be the "Shootout" and never the "Rivalry.") First of all, to complain that a Nos. 13 vs. 15 matchup is any sort of letdown is to forget how brief this season is in general, and how weird this week's slate of games is in particular. Ranked-on-ranked action isn't easy to come by this Saturday. Savor what is there. Second of all, don't tell grownups that the Longhorns and Sooners might want to beat the snot out of each other that much less just because both teams have been dinged with a loss. Is it nastier when the stakes are higher? We're not actually sure. Texas is still Texas, Oklahoma is still Oklahoma, fried bubblegum on a stick is still fried bubblegum on a stick and the RRS remains a destination game and appointment television.
• Best reason to eat French fries on a sandwich for brunch. Louisville at Pittsburgh, in one of those curious 11 a.m. ET kickoffs we can never quite perk up for.
• Best rivalry game you've never heard of, Week 7 edition. Nevada at UNLV, renewing the Battle for the Fremont Cannon. In general, this blog wants to always come down on the side of teams trading weapons as traveling trophies, be they cannons or axes or boots full of live bees. It's one of our few guiding principles, and we stand by it.
• Best odds. We have constructed a sterling new knock-knock joke for this particular ACC matchup. We hope you like it. Ready?
Virginia Tech who?
Virginia Tech is favored by 10 points at home against Duke!
• Pointiest potential pointsplosion. As mentioned yesterday, we are currently en route to Shreveport to take in No. 22 Texas A&M versus No. 23 Louisiana Tech. These teams field two top-10 scoring offenses, and the last time we went to a game featuring a couple of those we got Baylor-West Virginia in Week 5. The graphical geniuses at Good Bull Hunting have a gorgeous visual preview of the game up, if you like your facts delivered with artful flair.
• Grisliest potential blowout. Boston College feels disrespected now? Before the Eagles even take the field? Against a Seminoles squad averaging more than 45 points per game and presumably sulking over a loss to NC State and looking to lash out? Welp!
• Best undercard game. Actual Good-Looking Football Teams Utah State and San Jose State meet in their first WAC game of the season at 4 p.m. ET. The game will be streamed on ESPN3.
• Trappiest trap game: We're not liking the looks of this Akron-at-Ohio matchup. The Bobcats still have the best overall chance of going undefeated, but the way they've played the past two weeks against UMass and Buffalo ... we just wonder. Honestly, the non-AQ team with the best chance to emerge undefeated out of Week 7 might be UTSA. RUNNER-UP, trappiest trap game: Fresno State at Boise State. Enjoy defending Robbie Rouse and Derek Carr at the same time, Broncos!
• Best nightcap. We're blessed this Saturday with that most soothing of lullabies, the 11:59 p.m. Hawaii kickoff, with the Warriors hosting New Mexico in a little late-night MWCtion. (The pronunciation of this term needs some work.) However, the 10:30 Cal-Washington State game cannot be discounted, for reasons we will outline below, right now:
Just doing a little extra studying of this week's opponent.#GoCougs twitter.com/Coach_Leach/st…When your NFL partisan pals ask you what's so great about the college game, just remember to point right back to this.
— Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) October 11, 2012