As we probably should have expected, CBS is exercising it's 6-day option for the games of October 11th, meaning we won't find out what time Arkansas and Alabama will begin until after this Saturday's games have concluded.
CBS has a doubleheader scheduled for the 11th, with one game at 11:00 am and the other at 2:30. ESPN will also air two games on their family of networks at 5 pm and 8 pm. CBS will get the first pick of games for the 2:30 slot, followed by ESPN for their two slots, and then CBS will pick fourth for its 11:00 game. There are five games CBS is considering, and the fifth game not picked up by CBS or ESPN will likely air on the SEC Network in prime time as the SEC Network currently has games selected for the morning and afternoon slates, but not for prime time.
The five games under consideration by CBS on the 11th are
- Alabama @ Arkansas
- LSU @ Florida
- Ole Miss @ Texas A&M
- Georgia @ Missouri
- Auburn @ Mississippi State
The games on the 4th that will determine much of this are:
- Alabama @ Ole Miss
- LSU @ Auburn
- Texas A&M @ Mississippi State
- Florida @ Tennessee
Frankly, there are all sorts of combinations from this weekend that will impact when the games will be picked for the 11th. However, Arkansas fans should probably cheer for Alabama to beat Ole Miss because A) probably slim chances of the Tide struggling twice in a row in SEC games and B) probably much better chance of a higher profile game either in prime time or the 2:30 slot if Alabama is still undefeated. (Although I think the 2:30 slot will be a stretch regardless, but if Arkansas had won on Saturday...)
But when there are five choices and the one you want to avoid is the 4th, there's no telling what could happen.
If Mississippi State and Auburn win, that game is probably the 2:30 pick. If Ole Miss and Texas A&M win, their game on the 11th is probably the 2:30 game. If they mix the games this weekend, all games are probably on the table.
Personally, I don't see LSU/Florida being particularly interesting compared to the other games. Georgia/Missouri probably should be since it may decide the East, but the West is dominating the storylines this season.
There's a ton of unknowns.
At least we get a great slate of games to enjoy during the bye week. And a lot of time to pray to avoid the 11:00 slot.