Though I would never want Georgia to play in one, I love Thursday night games. They are usually pretty good games, and they help get the football weekend off to a good start. And being the only game on that night in most cases, it can get your full attention.
This year, for whatever reason, there just aren’t that many good games on Thursdays. Some weeks were downright terrible games I won’t be watching (OK, I probably will). Of course, the commentary of David Pollack and Jesse Palmer is pretty dreadful, but an improvement of Jesse Palmer and Craig James.
With that said, I found 9 Thursday games I thought were pretty good. I’ve ranked these 9 in order of most compelling.
1. Texas A&M at South Carolina (8/28, 6:00 SEC Network)
There is something about the opening Thursday night and South Carolina football games that just feels right. Both teams are breaking in new QBs and other key pieces. Will be interesting to see how good both teams are as they move on. Oh yeah, the debut of the SEC Network.
2. LSU at Texas A&M (11/27, 7:30 ESPN)
Texas A&M swaps out Texas for LSU on Thanksgiving night. This could have been 1b, but I think that Texas A&M will have a few losses by this point, while LSU should be in the thick of the Western division race. At any rate, this should be an entertaining game and a nice way to end Turkey day after suffering through the Lions, the Cowboys, and the family.
3. Auburn at Kansas State (9/18, 7:30 ESPN)
Kansas State plays fundamental football and has slowed Baylor down better than anyone the last few years. Auburn has a tough schedule, and if they are going to have any big aspirations, they have to get out of Manhattan with a win.
4. Arizona at Oregon (10/2, 10:30 ESPN)
I don’t think Oregon will be a National Title Contender, but the Ducks will still score a bunch of points. Arizona can, too. This will be a fun game.
5. UCLA at Arizona State (9/25, 10:00 FS1)
UCLA should have a good team this year, and Arizona State should take a step back, but this still should be a fun game to watch.
6. UNC at Duke (11/20, 7:30 ESPN)
A rivalry game that should be fun. Not sure what Duke is going to do this year, and everyone says UNC should be competitive for whatever ACC division they are in. Could be a good game, could be a snooze fest.
7. Boise State vs. Ole Miss (8/28, 8:00 ESPN)
Ole Miss is one of those mediocre teams that is supposed to “be a contender and/or surprise team.” No doubt that Hugh Freeze has recruited like Jackie Sherrill well, so this opening game will be good to see how they look. Boise State is not as good as a couple years ago, but this should still be compelling if only to see how the Rebels look.
8. Miami at Virginia Tech (10/23, 7:30 ESPN)
Probably will decide the Coastal Division, or at least put the winner in the driver’s seat. I mean, I guess it will. Duke won this Division last year, so who the hell knows.
9. Texas Tech at Oklahoma State (9/25, 7:30 ESPN)
This should be a shootout of a game, so something just fun.