Today in the NCAA!

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 17, 2005

Can’t get enough football all day Saturday?

In between numerous beverages, an occasional nap, and dodging long-overdue household chores, here’s a recommended TV-viewing schedule.

Oregon State (2-0) at #11 Louisville (1-0) (Noon – ESPN) – Certainly UVA fans will not agree with this selection, and that’s expected.

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However, for the rest of the viewing public, why watch the Cavs beat an inexperienced, offensively-inept Syracuse team something along the lines of 27-6 (I think!)?

Last week, the Beavers beat Boise State by three.

Last year, Louisville beat Boise State in the Liberty Bowl by four.

What do those facts mean? Not much — Louisville is certainly better than OSU, but the Beavers are the second-toughest foe standing in the Cardinals’ way to a perfect season (West Virginia on Oct. 15 will be the toughest).

In week one, UL allowed 21 unanswered second half points to Kentucky, and UK was a fumble on the two-yard line away from overtime.

Oregon St. will get to a bowl game this year, Kentucky will not.

Louisville won’t need two great halves, but they will need at least two good halves.

My pick – Louisville 45, Oregon State 31

During commercials – #7 (1-AA) William & Mary (1-1) at Rhode Island (2-0) (Noon – Comcast)

This will be the Tribe’s third straight road game to start the season.

Normally Little Rhody would seem like a little problem, but road games in the Atlantic 10 are 1-AA’s answer to SEC road games.

W&M’s Elijah Brooks put up 149 yards and 2 TDs vs. Marshall and he’ll be enough of a difference as coach Jimmie Laycock is still picking his successor at QB to Lang Campbell.

My pick – William & Mary 31, Rhode Island 27

Michigan State (2-0) at #10 Notre Dame (2-0) (2:30 – NBC) – This overlaps a bit with the early games, but Charlie Weis has dramatically brought Notre Dame back to true importance and it should come down to a field goal one way or the other.

Even with the two upset road wins already in hand, if the Irish trip up here, Touchdown Jesus could be looking at a 3-3 record after USC comes to South Bend on Oct. 15.

The Spartans are a team on the rise and now have an experienced QB in Drew Stanton; he wasn’t as experienced when MSU lost at home to the Irish last season. Notre Dame would be very wise to get a big early lead based on momentum, or Michigan State will have a very good chance to disrupt the Weis party.

Here’s how I bet it goes: the Irish defense makes a big play, Weis, like in the Michigan game, scripts the first couple drives perfectly, and Notre Dame successfully runs out the clock late.

My pick – Notre Dame 20, Michigan State 17

During commercials – #13 Miami (0-1) at #20 Clemson (2-0) (3:30 – ABC)

It’s easy to be down on Miami after the aesthetically brutal opener against FSU, so I will be. Clemson has two close wins, including over Texas A&M, who could prove to be better than Miami by the end of the season.

At home and with Charlie Whitehurst and James Davis carrying the offensive load, Clemson should not be intimidated.

My pick – Clemson 21, Miami 16

#5 Tennessee (1-0) at #6 Florida (2-0) (8:00 – CBS)

This has been the best SEC rivalry for most of the last 15 years, it’s a shame they always play so early in the season.

Now with Florida having the second-hottest new head coach in Urban Meyer, they are back to routing teams like Wyoming and Louisiana Tech.

Fair enough, but the real measuring stick is this one, and fortunately Meyer gets his first crack at the Vols at home.

Which scene will be more insane Saturday, South Bend or the Swamp?

The 8 p.m. starting time and a few more hours worth of tailgating probably gives the edge to Florida.

More importantly, Tennessee’s defense will have to carry the day for the Vols to win.

Chris Leak is going to become more and more impressive as the season goes on.

Florida’s offense outscores Tennessee’s offense in a fourth quarter shootout.

My pick – Florida 37, Tennessee 30

During commercials – Mississippi State (1-1) at Tulane (0-0) (8:00 – CSTV)

Normally, Mississippi State and Tulane would not be worth talking about, but given the story surrounding Tulane’s football team after Hurricane Katrina, if you have CSTV (College Sports Television), this will be a great story to check out.

Tulane has spent the last three weeks at SMU (who has generously opened everything they have to Tulane, and oh, Tulane and SMU will be opponents next Saturday).

Practice has been part of Tulane’s time, but so has getting food, trying to find out about family members, buying new clothes, getting completely new football gear, and knowing Tulane’s campus is uninhabitable for the rest of football season, if not much longer.

&uot;Most of us lost everything,&uot; senior linebacker Anthony Cannon said to ESPN’s Ivan Maisel, &uot;and if you do have something, you’re not getting into New Orleans anytime soon to get it. It’s pretty amazing to go from having everything to having nothing in a matter of 24 hours. Coach stresses to us that we shouldn’t worry about ourselves right now. We’re OK.&uot;

My pick (made quite trivially) – Tulane 24, Mississippi State 10