College football: Dud openers for Thursday night
The week we’ve all been waiting for finally is here. College football kicks off on Thursday night. But it’s going to be a little anticlimactic. What should be a rousing start to a season instead will be a dud.
In the coming weeks, ESPN Thursday night football will provide some really solid games. OSU-Arizona. LSU at Mississippi State. California at Oregon. USC at California.
But college football 2011 kicks off with Nevada-Las Vegas at Wisconsin. Nothing against the Runnin’ Rebs, but Wisconsin will dominate UNLV.
Here are the Thursday night games involving teams from the six major conferences: Murray State at Louisville, Fordham at Connecticut, Western Carolina at Georgia Tech, North Carolina Central at Rutgers, UNLV at Wisconsin, Mississippi State at Memphis, Wake Forest at Syracuse, Montana State at Utah, Kentucky vs. Western Kentucky in Nashville (don’t ask why two Kentucky schools are playing in Tennessee) and Cal-Davis at Arizona State.
One clunker after another.
Friday night brings a good game, TCU at Baylor, along with a full slate Saturday. The way schools will move around games to accommodate television, how could ESPN not get a big-time game for opening night? Maybe Boise State-Georgia wouldn’t move to Thursday night, but surely the network could trump UNLV-Wisconsin. For instance, UCLA at Houston, which isn’t an ESPN game but probably could have been had for other considerations. Or even Brigham Young at Ole Miss. Or even TCU at Baylor? Friday
College football is a spectacle sport with great traditions and fabulous fan followings. People anticipate its start for months. Why make the actually opener such a dud?
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