First of 35

Saturday starts the college bowl season. Over the next 24 days, there will be 35 bowl games from New Mexico to New Orleans.
Only six days are quiet – and one is January 1. It’s a Sunday, so the NFL takes the field and bowls wait until January 2.
ESPN has the first three bowls of the season – starting at 2 p.m. with Temple facing Wyoming in the New Mexico Bowl. It’s off to the blue turf as Ohio plays Utah State at the Idaho Potato Bowl, then the day concludes with the New Orleans Bowl – San Diego State vs. Louisiana-Lafayette.
It’s a long way and a lot of games until LSU-Alabama Jan. 9.
The Bowl Championship Series has its semifinals this weekend, as Montana visits Sam Houston State Friday at 8 p.m. on ESPN. Division III crowns its champion Friday at 7 p.m. on ESPN2, as Mount Union plays Wisconsin-Whitewater. Again.
Division II holds its title game Saturday at 11 a.m. on ESPN2, with Wayne State meeting Pittsburg State.
The Ravens and Steelers take their quests for the postseason to the west coast this weekend. Baltimore visits San Diego on NBC Sunday night football, while Pittsburgh takes on NFC West champion San Francisco on ESPN Monday at 8:30 p.m.
NFL Network carries a pair of games this weekend – Jacksonsville at Atlanta on Thursday and the Cowboys heading to Tampa Bay on Saturday.
Sunday afternoon, the Redskins battle NFC East leading New York at 1 p.m. on FOX. CBS has the doubleheader, and most of the country gets New England at Tim Tebow and the Broncos in the late afternoon slot. The Bengals play at St. Louis in the 1 p.m. game in the Washington area.
The shortened NBA preseason starts Friday on Comcast, with the Wizards hosting the 76ers at 7 p.m.
The Capitals head west for the weekend, playing at Winnipeg Thursday at 8:30 p.m. on Comcast. It’s off to Colorado Saturday at 9 p.m.
CBS has a college basketball doubleheader Saturday afternoon. Butler takes on Purdue at 2 p.m., then it’s a split between Memphis at Louisville or Gonzaga taking on Arizona at 4 p.m.
ESPN has second-ranked Ohio State taking on South Carolina Saturday at noon. ESPN2 shows four more games Saturday, with Texas-Temple going at 2:30 p.m. Notre Dame plays Indiana at 4:30 p.m., followed by Syracuse’s trip to N.C. State. At 10:30 p.m., Oklahoma State battles New Mexico.
Comcast offers the Orange Bowl Classic Saturday at noon. Miami plays Florida Atlantic in the opener, then Florida faces Texas A&M. There’s ACC basketball at 4:30 p.m., with Winthrop visiting Clemson. Sunday at 1 p.m., Boston College hosts Bryant.
Three Big East have non-conference games on MASN Saturday afternoon. Georgetown faces in-town rival American at noon, followed by Texas A&M-Corpus Christi meeting West Virginia at 2 p.m. and Northern Colorado taking on Marquette at 5 p.m. It’s off to the Big South Saturday at 7 p.m. as Liberty hosts Hampton, and Sunday at 1 p.m. Holy Cross visits Connecticut.
The Connecticut women play Baylor Sunday at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN.
ESPN has a pair of high school basketball games Thursday – Oak Hill Academy vs. Miller Grove at 8 p.m. followed by Montrose Christian-Marcus Flower Mound of Texas.
NCAA crowns its women’s volleball champion this weekend. ESPN2 shows Florida State vs. UCLA Thursday at 7 p.m., then it’s the second semifinal between USC and Illinois. The final is Saturday at 8:30 p.m.
Want to see some snow? The Winter Dew Tour hits Colorado for the Nike Open Saturday at 4:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. on NBC.

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