September is here, which means the pennant chase in baseball, WNBA playoffs and yes, football. Week 1 of college football begins today, but it’s only an appetizer for the fantastic slate ahead of us this weekend. Meanwhile, today also features Day 3 at the U.S. Open, men’s World Cup qualifiers in Europe and much more.
Here’s what I’m watching.
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U.S. Open: Coco Gauff vs. Sloane Stephens
Day 3 of the tournament features the beginning of the second round in men’s and women’s singles action, as well as the first round of men’s and women’s doubles. On the women’s side, a matchup between Sloane Stephens and Coco Gauff in prime time should be fun. The 17-year-old Gauff bounced back from losing her first set Monday to defeat Magda Linette. Her matchup with a fan favorite in Stephens, who won the U.S. Open in 2017, should bring out one of the better crowds of the early rounds.
The men’s match of the night features Adrian Mannarino against Stefanos Tsitsipas, each of whom needed five sets to advance out of the first round. Tsitsipas’s long bathroom break during his win over Andy Murray on Monday has created a bit of controversy during the first few days of the tournament. My colleague Jon Wertheim has weighed in his mailbag.
ESPN/ESPN2/ESPN+, watch on fuboTV
- Mailbag: Should There Be a Standard Rule for Mid-Match Breaks? (Jon Wertheim)
- 2021 U.S. Open Seed Reports (Jon Wertheim)
- Insider Tips for Attending the 2021 U.S. Open (Jon Wertheim)
- St. Louis Cardinals at Cincinnati Reds | Today’s doubleheader between these division rivals has significant playoff implications as both teams fight for the second wild-card spot in the NL. Both games should have a playoff atmosphere to kick off September. J.A. Happ is slated to take the mound for the Cardinals in the second game against Reds starter Sonny Gray. 6:40 p.m. ET, MLB Network, watch on fuboTV
- Atlanta Braves at Los Angeles Dodgers | The Dodgers rallied late last night after having their bats silenced by Charlie Morton, narrowing their divisional deficit to just half a game behind San Francisco. Max Scherzer and Max Fried face off tonight to conclude the series. 10:10 p.m. ET, MLB Network, watch on fuboTV
- OL Reign at Houston Dash | Just four points separate the Reign (third) and Dash (eighth) in the NWSL standings, with Houston having a match in hand. That makes tonight critical. Megan Rapinoe has scored a brace in back-to-back games for the Reign, a huge lift as the team fights to move up the table. 8 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network, watch on fuboTV
- College Football: UAB vs Jacksonville State | There’s no pacing yourself in the first full weekend of college football. This in-state battle may be an FBS-FCS game, but Jacksonville State led Florida State at halftime last year—the team is legit. UAB could be one of the better Group of 5 teams nationally. 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, watch on fuboTV
- College Volleyball: Texas at Minnesota | This is a matchup between two top-10 teams, as the No. 1 Longhorns head to the Twin Cities. It’s the first real test of the year for Texas, which lost in the NCAA championship match this past spring to Kentucky. 8 p.m. ET, Big Ten Network, watch on fuboTV
Scotland at Denmark
World Cup qualifiers in Europe continue today across the continent, but this match stands out. Denmark became the darling of this summer’s European Championships, thanks to a deep run and the emotions behind Christian Eriksen’s physical collapse on the field. But the country was already off to a strong start in qualifying, with nine points after three matches. They’ll get a big test from Scotland, which failed to advance out of the group at Euro 2020 but was pesky throughout and has plenty of intriguing talent, including forward Che Adams. Points in this one would be a big step for Scotland to at least qualify for a playoff.
2:45 p.m. ET, ESPN+
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