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The Weekend That Will Be: Week 3

Vintage Knile must return if the Hogs want to compete at all tomorrow.
Vintage Knile must return if the Hogs want to compete at all tomorrow.

Thankfully, another Saturday will come tomorrow and the rotten, disgusting taste that has lingered in the mouths of Hog fans all week could be washed out.

Compared to what we have tasted this past week, can you imagine the taste of victory if Arkansas can pull off the upset of No. 1 Alabama?

Here is one positive way to look at it. The Hogs were a 30-point favorite last week, and the Crimson Tide is only a 20.5-point favorite tomorrow. It is a stretch, but I can dream.

Other than Verne, Gary, and Verne's chortle getting their first shot at SEC football on CBS this season, there are plenty of other games on the schedule to watch to this week. It is a much better schedule than we have seen any other weekend of the season thus far.

Here is a look at Saturday's schedule and games in each time slot to pay attention, flip back-and-forth between, and enjoy. To the games...

Saturday at Noon

Wake Forest at No. 5 Florida State (ESPN)- The Demon Deacons have a huge opportunity this week in Tallahassee. They can upset Kirk Herbstreit's national title pick. They were able to knock off a favorited North Carolina team 28-27 last week thanks to Tanner Price's 327 yards passing and two rushing touchdowns. Wake has also won their last two meetings in Talahassee. The Seminoles have given up only three points so far this season. While they did only play three-fourths of a game last week, Florida State has played no team (Murray State and Savannah State) that could provide a top five team competition. The Seminoles start their ACC campaign with a 'W.'

Arkansas State at Nebraska (ESPN2)- Nebraska took a beating last week, giving up 652 yards of offense to UCLA, and you can only imagine they are ready to get back home to the land of corn. The Red Wolves are making $1,000,000 to make the trip over to Lincoln. With the added importance of updated facilities and new uniforms (unless you lose to ULM, then your new, fancy jerseys don't matter), Gus Malzahn knows what he is doing with that sort of payday and will take the loss as well as he can.

ULM at Auburn (12:21 p.m., SEC Network)- Last week, I wrote out the Warhawks entire school name, but unfortunately, this week the entire football-following nation is well aware of who they are and where their from. I always find it intriguing how fluid the TV schedule has to be throughout the season. Arkansas' loss changed several weekend plans for reporters and cameramen. Gameday opted out of a trip to Fayetteville for one to Knoxville. While this week's television was set before the season, ESPN will undoubtedly do bigger numbers on the outside shot of the back-to-back upset for ULM. Auburn will try and avoid an 0-3 start and does was Arkansas couldn't, beat a Sun Belt team with four wins a year ago.


No. 1 Alabama at Arkansas (3:30 p.m., CBS)- What more can be said that already has not been written on this site? Props to tall the contributors to this site who have provided incredible insight to what this game against Tide means this weekend. The pick here is tough. Do you go with your heart (Arkansas) or brain(Alabama)? I've always said, never give the points to the Cowboys, bet the Braves or against your own team. I abstain from picking.

North Carolina at No. 19 Louisville (3:30 p.m., ABC)- Last week, the Tar Heels dropped a game on the road in a surprising ending, while Louisville handled Missouri State with ease. On one hand I want my favorite Arkansas head coaching job candidate,Charlie Strong, to struggle this season so he can realize there is greener grass in Northwest Arkansas. On the other hand, I want to see him succeed under pressure so I have confidence in him next season when he runs through the 'A.' He wins this week and takes the Cardinals to a top 15 ranking for the first time since a certain motorcycle enthusiast did.


No. 18 Florida at No. 23 Tennessee (6 p.m., ESPN)- For the first time in seven years the Vols and the Gators will meet as ranked teams in what once was the battle to see who would represent the East in the SEC Championship. The last time Tennesse beat the Gators the Expos were in Montreal, the Detroit Pistons were NBA Champions, and Arkansas beat Alabama for the second year in a row. It's been a while. However, both programs seem to be on the rise again, Tennessee with their offense and Florida with their defense. Tennessee's Tyler Bray reminds me of a certain No. 15 in cardinal and white a few years ago the way he flicks the ball 70 yards downfield. The Vols ride his canon to a win.

Mississippi State at Troy (7 p.m., ESPN3)- I have no genuine interest in watching this game when there are plenty of better options in this time slot, but who looks at this game and doesn't laugh? As an Arkansas fan I have no room to make fun of any school playing in non-conference Sun Belt games, especially with the beatdown State provided Auburn last week. That said, Mississippi State would be the one team in the SEC that travels to play Troy.

No. 2 Southern California at No. 21 Stanford (7:30 p.m., FOX)- Stanford has beaten the Trojans for the past three seanford fsons. That was when Andrew Luck was their quarterback. Now they must try and succeed in the post-Luck era. So far, they have won both of their non-conference games -- which is more than some teams can say.... The Cardinal defense is ranked 99th in pass defense though, which spells disaster if your a Staan because USC boasts of the country's most explosive air attack. Times have changed and so has Stanford's 'Luck' (too easy). Barkley and Co. earn their class' first victory over the Cardinal.

No. 21 Notre Dame at No. 10 Michigan State (8 p.m., ABC)- Michigan State seems to be pumping on all cylinders right now. The Spartan defense has not allowed a defensive touchdown all season, Le'Veon Bell is averaging 140 yards rushing and two touchdowns per game, and first-year starting quarterback threw for 275 yards and two touchdowns last week. Notre Dame returns their leading rusher, Cierre Wood from a year ago and will attack through the air with dual-threat quarterback, sophomore Everett Golson. If the Irish can pull of a win, it will be their first 3-0 start in 10 years. If they were at home, I might go with them, but the Spartan defense will be the difference.

No. 19 Texas at Ole Miss (9:15 p.m., ESPN)- Finally everyone who does not special order the Longhorn Network can get a look at the Longhorns. Is the Texas defense better than it has been the last few years? They get their first chance to answer that question against the Rebels who are averaging more than 280 rushing yards per game.

Upset alert- No. 13 Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh (Noon, ESPNU)- The Panthers are desperate after starting 0-2, including a loss to FBS Youngstown State. It is an early game and one the Hokies should win, but must not overlook.

Most intriguing game without a ranked team- Navy at Penn State (3:30 p.m., ABC)- Sure this may be the third week that the Nittany Lions find themselves in the "Most intriguing game without a ranked team" slot but this week winless Penn State is going up against winless Navy. More was expected out of the Nittany Lions this season despite the sanctions. Coach Bill O'Brien, who was the mastermind behind Tom Brady for the Patriots is averaging 15 points per game in Happy Valley. If they do not win this week, they could easily lose the next six games. Penn State steps up and wins.

If I could go to one game- Take me home, down the Pig Trail and into the Ozarks for the Razorbacks. Sure it could be an all-around depressing afternoon, but can you imagine the party if the Hogs can pull off the win? Going to Stanford to enjoy their quirkiness and the No. 2 team in the country get challenged would not be far behind.

Season record- 13-5