This Saturday marks the first and - quite possibly - the most important game for VT this season. I have little doubt that all of us here at FBS (including our newest recruit, FootballGirl) will be glued either to our TV sets at home or, for a lucky few, a seat in the Georgia Dome at about 8pm Eastern Time.
But what about the rest of the weekend?
With the NFL season kickoff still a week away at that point, and the final preseason games wrapping up on Friday night the NCAA is taking full advantage of the open weekend to peddle their collegiate wares. There are some fantastic looking games lined up for us to ogle at. Here’s just a few:
#16 Oregon at #14 Boise State - Thursday Sept 3rd, 10:15pm EST - ESPN -
The returning WAC Champion Broncos open their season hosting the 2008 Pac-10 runner-up Ducks on everyone’s favorite cyan surface: the infamous “Smurf Turf” in Bronco Stadium. The Broncos will be looking to show that they can still compete on the national stage without running back Ian Johnson. If I might provide a pre-game tip: adjust your TV’s color balance before kickoff.
Minnesota at Syracuse - Saturday Sept 5th, 12pm EST - ESPN2 -
While The Golden Gopher’s season opener at Syracuse may lack the national title implications of some of my other selections, I just can’t help but wonder what kind of quarterback two-story teabag-ee Greg Paulus will make (see included photo of VT's new basketball practice facility). Lucky for him, Deron Washington doesn’t play defensive end.
#13 Georgia at #9 Oklahoma State - Saturday Sept 5th, 3:30pm EST - ABC -
All three of my sisters went to Oklahoma State, so for the first time since I can remember, I’ll be watching the Cowboys because I want to, not because I have to. Zac Robinson & Co. look good this season, and not just because T. Boone Pickens bought them some new threads.
Charleston Southern at #1 Florida - Saturday Sept 5th, 7pm EST - ESPN360.com -
I know, I know... our beloved Hokies will be kicking off just an hour later, but don’t worry. I’m fairly certain that the 63-point favorite Gators will have this one wrapped up sometime before the end of the first quarter. Think of it like a game of Madden 2010. With 5-minute quarters on. Against your grandmother. Just trust me on this one - it’ll be over quickly.
#8 Mississippi at Memphis - Sunday Sept 6th, 3:30pm EST - ESPN -
What the hell else are you going to do? Seriously, though, the Rebels return Jevan Snead at QB and the explosive Dexter McCluster at RB. While the spread might not be as lopsided as Florida’s, it still should be a straight-up Ole Miss showcase.
Miami at #18 Florida State - Monday Sept 7th, 8pm EST - ESPN -
The Monday Night Football crew takes a week off while the ACC takes an early opportunity to beat up on itself. Look for a scrappy Miami team to at least make this a ballgame. I’m personally hoping Florida State softens them up a bit so they won’t be such a pain in the ass for us come week 4.
There should be plenty of college action going on all this weekend, so eat drink and be merry. And don’t forget to wear your Maroon.