Thanksgiving weekend will have a lot of college football. It's up to you which games you watch, but here are 10 of them that you won't want to miss.
1. "the game" - Ohio State at Michigan
Michigan's Jim Harbaugh has gotten way too much flack given the consistency has been restored at Michigan. Obviously the next steps include elevating the win total per year, which would help if they beat Ohio State. Meanwhile, the Buckeyes have playoff hopes on the line, even though they are already going to play for the Big Ten championship on December 7.
2. Iron Bowl - Alabama at Auburn
Alabama, like Ohio State, has playoff hopes on the line, even though Alabama can't win the SEC. Their best bet is being an at-large 11-1 team like they were when they won the title in '17, a year in which they also lost to Auburn. November 30 will mark the 6-year anniversary of the "kick-six" from then defensive back Chris Davis. Also, special tribute to the family of Rod Bramblett, who was tragically killed in a car accident earlier this year. RIP good Sir. Your memory lives on forever.
3. The Battle for Paul Bunyan's Axe - Wisconsin at Minnesota
College Gameday will be in Minneapolis for this one, arguably the biggest meeting ever between these two teams. The winner will win the Big Ten west and face Ohio State on December 7. Minnesota won last year for the first time in 15 tries, and Wisconsin will try to not only get it back, but dash Minnesota's Big Ten Championship, and potentially Rose Bowl, hopes.
4. The Civil War - Oregon State at Oregon
Oregon just had its playoff hopes dashed when it lost to Arizona State last week, so it's worth wondering how much Oregon will put into this game because they still have a chance at the Rose Bowl since they won the Pac-12 North already. Oregon State is progressing well under head coach Jonathan Smith, who's in his second season with the Beavers program; however, they need a win to get to bowl eligibility.
5. The Battle for the Old Oaken Bucket - Indiana at Purdue
These two got the lucky end of the stick when the Big Ten switched to East and West divisions since this is the only protected crossover rivalry in the conference. Purdue has knocked Indiana from bowl eligibility each of the last two seasons, but Indiana has already clinched bowl eligibility this season. For Purdue, while they may not go bowling with a seven-loss record, they can extend their win streak in this rivalry to three games if they take care of business against Indiana.
6. The Heroes Game - Iowa at Nebraska
Like Oregon State, Nebraska is fighting for bowl eligibility too, so they will have to beat Iowa for that to happen. Iowa has been unlucky this season with their three losses coming by a combined 14 points. The question is, how much will it matter for Iowa to win this game? And does it matter more for Nebraska since they have postseason eligibility on the line? Remember too that Nebraska was pegged as a preseason division champion in the second year under Scott Frost.
7. Bedlam - Oklahoma at Oklahoma State
Oklahoma has everything to play for still, since they rose from 10 to 7 in the playoff rankings this week. It's important for them to keep winning, and for Baylor to keep winning too, since it will only help the hopes of the Big 12 conference champion qualifying for the College Football Playoff. Oklahoma hasn't lost in the series since 2014, so for this year's Oklahoma State senior class, they want to do everything they can to not be the second straight to never beat Oklahoma.
8. The Egg Bowl - Ole Miss at Mississippi State
Ole Miss will likely miss bowl season this year since they have already lost seven games, but they can potentially knock Mississippi State out of bowl eligibility by beating them in their own house. Mississippi State has regressed a bit in Joe Moorhead's second year as the head coach, especially after losing Nick Fitzgerald from last year's team at quarterback. They also had two first round picks in the 2019 NFL draft with Montez Sweat and Johnathan Abram. But the matter is, one team can spoil the other's hopes to extend their season, and that's what really is at stake here, aside from bragging rights in the state of Mississippi.
9. The Apple Cup - Washington State at Washington
Last year, Washington State was ranked in the top 10 entering this match-up with a Pac-12 north title on the line, only to let it all slip away, where they watched Washington win the Pac-12 and play in the Rose Bowl. Neither team is as good as they were last year, but for Washington State especially, pride is on the line in a trying season for both teams.
10. The Battle of the Palmetto State - Clemson at South Carolina
After South Carolina won five straight in this series from 2009-2013, Clemson has since on the next five, and Clemson has ascended to the top of College Football in that time. Like past years, Clemson has playoff hopes on the line, and there's no room for a slip-up. Especially not against South Carolina. For the Gamecocks, they would like nothing more than to spoil Clemson's season and knock them out of the playoff picture. This game is personal for South Carolina running back Tavien Feaster, who spent three years at Clemson as part of a trio of running backs alongside future NFL'er Travis Etienne and current New York Giants back-up running back Wayne Gallman. He's been on the winning end his entire college career; now that he's on the other side, can he deliver against his old team?
These are 10 of many college football games that will be going on this weekend, and it'll behoove you to keep an eye out for any of these 10. There's a reason why the players on these teams play the games, and they want to be on the winning end of it. If you're watching, you'll see why it means so much to the players.
Happy Thanksgiving and HAPPY RIVALRY WEEK! AY ZIGGY ZOOMBA
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