ABC was no doubt licking its chops over Saturday night’s prime-time 8 o’clock matchup between Big Ten powers Penn State and Ohio State. That was until Penn State lost a marathon nine-overtime affair 20-18 to Illinois last Saturday.
Still, Ohio State enters Saturday at No. 5 in the AP Top 25. Penn State dropped to 20. Two questions persist. Should Ohio State be ranked ahead of No. 7 Oregon despite losing to the Ducks at home in September? And will Penn State Coach James Franklin jump to USC at season’s end?
Fox’s noon game features No. 6 Michigan traveling to East Lansing to face archrival and No. 8 Michigan State. Jim Harbaugh has the Wolverines back on track. Meanwhile, Mel Tucker has done such a good job with the Spartans his name keeps coming up for the opening at LSU. Both Michigan and Michigan State are 7-0 on the season.
At 7 p.m. on ESPN, No. 10 Ole Miss travels to No. 18 Auburn. It’s a huge game for Ole Miss’s chances of making a New Year’s Six bowl. Lane Kiffin’s Rebels are 6-1 overall, their lone loss coming at Alabama. Auburn is 5-2 overall with losses at Penn State and home to Georgia.
As for the local 11, No. 12 Kentucky’s game at Mississippi State is a 7 p.m. start on the SEC Network. Tom Hart, Jordan Rodgers and Cole Cubelic will be on the call. Fresh off a bye week, Kentucky is 6-1 on the season. Fresh off a 45-6 thrashing of Vanderbilt, Mississippi State is 4-3.