The biggest, wildest, most ravishing, inconceivably audacious College Football Opening Weekend for ever and all time is finally here. Tantalizing college football fans through the summer, hanging still cruelly distant during the doldrums of August, today is our day.
There is nothing left to say.
There is only football to play.
The most important game of the day is in College Station, but to fill the rest of your hours, here are some other games to keep an eye on.
Oklahoma vs. Houston, 9:00am PDT, NRG Stadium, ABC. You’re up, get some coffee brewing, and sit down to see if Baker Mayfield and the Sooners, last year’s Big 12 champion and playoff participant, can deal an early season blow to the playoff hopes of Greg Ward Jr. and Group of 5 darling Houston, led by future head coach of some Texas school that fires their coach after this season, Tom Herman.
LSU vs. Wisconsin, 12:30pm PDT, Lambeau Field, ABC. UCLA isn’t the only team facing a former coordinator in Week 1, as Wisconsin has to face former defensive coordinator Dave Aranda, now in the same position at LSU. Wisconsin got dibs on one-time hot shot Justin Wilcox, who will have to come up with a way to slow down Leonard Fournette. More interesting storyline: Will any player make the Lambeau Leap?
Georgia vs. North Carolina, 2:30pm PDT, Georgia Dome, ESPN. Nick Chubb is back, Kirby Smart will try his chops as top banana, and the Bulldogs move on from the Mark Richt era against ACC runner-up and 2015 surprise team North Carolina.
USC vs. Alabama, 5:00 PDT, AT&T Stadium, ABC. First-year head coach Clay Helton, who is not Steve Sarkisian or Lane Kiffin, but also not Nick Saban, will lead his team to face Nick Saban, who is Nick Saban, and has a Lane Kiffin, who’s at his best when there’s a Nick Saban to keep him in check.
Clemson at Auburn, 6:00pm, PDT, Jordan-Hare Stadium, ESPN. Deshaun Watson and College Football Playoff runner-up Clemson travel to The Plains to visit the Auburn Tigers. Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn’s seat is red hot three seasons removed from appearing in the BCS Championship Game. You know what might save his job? Beat Clemson in Week 1.
BYU vs. Arizona, 7:30pm PDT, University of Phoenix Stadium, FS1. Two early UCLA opponents face-off when 2,000-Year-Old-Man Taysom Hill tries to terrorize Rich Rod’s new-look defense, courtesy of former Boise State defensive coordinator Marcel Yates. Have a nightcap, sure, but don’t forget to chart tendencies, the Bruins travel to Provo in Week 3, and host the Wildcats in Week 5.
Here's today's full schedule of action:
|Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016|
|Matchup||Time (PT)||TV / Streaming|
|Georgia Tech vs. Boston College (in Ireland)||4:30 am||ESPN2 / WatchESPN|
|(3) Oklahoma vs. (15) Houston (at NRG Stadium)||9 am||ABC / WatchESPN|
|Bowling Green at (6) Ohio State||9 am||BTN / BTN2Go|
|Hawaii at (7) Michigan||9 am||ESPN / WatchESPN|
|Boise State at UL Lafayette||9 am||ASN / ESPN3|
|EKU at Purdue||9 am||ESPNNEWS / WatchESPN|
|Fordham at Navy||9 am||CBSSN|
|Howard at Maryland||9 am||BTN / BTN2Go|
|Missouri at West Virginia||9 am||FS1 / FS Go|
|South Alabama at Mississippi State||9 am||SECN / WatchESPN|
|Western Michigan at Northwestern||9 am||ESPNU / WatchESPN|
|Liberty at Virginia Tech||9:30 am||ACCN / WatchESPN|
|Villanova at Pittsburgh||10:30 am||WatchESPN|
|Abilene Christian at Air Force||11:00 am||MWN|
|Rutgers at (14) Washington||11:00 am||Pac-12N / Pac-12.com|
|(5) LSU vs. Wisconsin (at Green Bay, WI)||12:30 pm||ABC / WatchESPN|
|(16) UCLA at Texas A&M||12:30 pm||CBS / cbssports.com|
|Miami, OH at (17) Iowa||12:30 pm||ESPNU / WatchESPN|
|SE Louisiana at (21) Oklahoma State||12:30 pm||FSN / FS Go|
|Kent State at Penn State||12:30 pm||BTN / BTN2Go|
|Murray State at Illinois||12:30 pm||BTN / BTN2Go|
|Richmond at Virginia||12:30 pm||WatchESPN|
|Texas State at Ohio||12:30 pm||CBSSN|
|Louisiana Tech at Arkansas||1:00 pm||SECN / WatchESPN|
|UC Davis at (24) Oregon||2:00 pm||Pac-12N / Pac-12.com|
|(18) Georgia vs. (22) North Carolina (at Atlanta, GA)||2:30 pm||ESPN / WatchESPN|
|Austin Peay at Troy||3:00 pm||ESPN3|
|Florida A&M at Miami (FL)||3:00 pm||WatchESPN|
|Hampton at Old Dominion||3:00 pm||CUSA.TV|
|NC Central at Duke||3:00 pm||WatchESPN|
|Savannah State at Georgia Southern||3:00 pm||ESPN3|
|Southern Illinois at Florida Atlantic||3:00 pm||CUSA.TV ($)|
|Western Carolina at East Carolina||3:00 pm||ESPN3|
|VMI at Akron||3:30 pm||ESPN3|
|Alabama A&M at Middle Tennessee||4:00 pm||CUSA.TV ($)|
|Alabama State at UTSA||4:00 pm||KMYS-CW 35|
|Rhode Island at Kansas||4:00 pm||ESPN3|
|San Jose State at Tulsa||4:00 pm||CBSSN|
|SE Missouri State at Memphis||4:00 pm||ESPN3|
|SMU at North Texas||4:00 pm||ASN|
|South Carolina State at UCF||4:00 pm||ESPN3|
|Southern at ULM||4:00 pm||ESPN3|
|Towson at USF||4:00 pm||ESPN3|
|UMass at (25) Florida||4:30 pm||SECN / WatchESPN|
|Southern Miss at Kentucky||4:30 pm||ESPNU / WatchESPN|
|(20) USC vs. (1) Alabama (at Arlington, TX)||5:00 pm||ABC / WatchESPN|
|South Dakota State at (13) TCU||5:00 pm||FSN / FS Go|
|EWU at Washington State||5:00 pm||Pac-12N / Pac-12.com|
|Fresno State at Nebraska||5:00 pm||BTN / BTN2Go|
|New Mexico State at UTEP||5:00 pm||beIN SPORTS|
|Northern Iowa at Iowa State||5:00 pm||Cyclones.tv ($)|
|Stephen F. Austin at Texas Tech||5:00 pm||FSN / FS Go|
|New Hampshire at San Diego State||5:30 pm||TBA|
|(2) Clemson at Auburn||6:00 pm||ESPN / WatchESPN|
|Arizona vs. BYU (at Glendale, AZ)||7:30 pm||FS1 / FS Go|
|Northern Illinois at Wyoming||7:30 pm||CBSSN|
|Northern Arizona at Arizona State||7:45 pm||Pac-12N / Pac-12.com|
This is your Saturday open thread!