DJ Gallo's Varsity Tailgate, Week 14
It's the last Tailgate of the season, dear ones. There, there. Don't cry.
If you'd like to put on Green Day's "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" and think about all the great times we've had this season, I'll wait.
Done? Already? I see.
Well, this week I'm changing things up a bit. I'm previewing every game on the schedule. Grab your funnel and let's get going.
MAC Championship Game
Ohio vs. Central Michigan -- Friday, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2
This is one of the final opportunities to see Central Michigan star quarterback Dan LeFevour play. Hey, has anyone else during his outstanding career thought to make the pun "I've got LeFevour"? Really? Well, then I'm the 5,991st.
Conference USA Championship Game
No. 21 Houston vs. East Carolina -- Saturday, noon ET on ESPN2
East Carolina could be distracted entering this game because head coach Skip Holtz is rumored to be on his way out to take the head-coaching job at Kansas or Notre Dame. Although Houston could be distracted, too, as it is rumored that quarterback Case Keenum is on his way out to take the starting quarterback job in Oakland or Cleveland.
Big East Conference
No. 23 West Virginia at Rutgers -- noon on ESPN
If West Virginia wins, it will clinch third place in the Big East (possibly second) and likely earn a New Year's Day bowl berth. What? You don't think the Mountaineers deserve that? Well, let West Virginia head coach Bill Stewart sell you on his program: "We're not as talented maybe as a lot of people and we don't win very pretty -- and we're going to try and work on that. But what we do seem to stumble through and bounce into and roll around in is that we find ways to win." This guy probably had some sweet pickup lines back in the day. "I don't make a lot of money, and I have chronic halitosis. But you seem nice and I would be faithful to you."
Big East championship
No. 5 Cincinnati at No. 15 Pittsburgh -- noon ET on ABC
This isn't officially a conference championship game, but the winner is the conference champion. So there. Anyway you have to think Cincinnati will have more motivation. At 9-2, Pitt is just playing for a BCS berth, likely against the ACC champion or an at-large team. Whereas undefeated Cincinnati is playing for the right to get hosed out of a shot at the national title. What an honor!
Fresno State at Illinois -- 12:30 p.m. ET on Big Ten Network
Scheduling a game this late in the season is one of the reasons Illinois will never be a Big Ten elite. A legit Big Ten team would be at home right now getting rusty for a bowl game.
Western Athletic Conference
San Jose State at Louisiana Tech -- 2 p.m. ET on ESPN360
The 2-9 Spartans travel 1,900 miles to Louisiana to take on the 2-8 Bulldogs. In this economy, I think it might make more sense if they just stay home and battle this one out on Xbox Live.
More Western Athletic Conference
New Mexico State at No. 6 Boise State -- 3 p.m. ET on ESPN360
Here's how an ideal Saturday plays out for Boise State: (1) The Broncos win, of course; (2) Nebraska knocks off undefeated Texas; (3) Pitt knocks off undefeated Cincinnati. Then the winner of the SEC championship game and TCU meet for the national title, meaning undefeated Boise State misses out on the BCS title game by only one spot instead of three. Exciting!
Arizona at No. 18 USC -- 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC
Usually at this time of year, Pete Carroll has his team playing for a Pac-10 or national championship. But not this year. This year he has them focused on being named bush league champions.
SEC Championship Game
No. 1 Florida vs. No. 2 Alabama -- 4 p.m. ET on CBS
A spot in the BCS title game is on the line. The Heisman Trophy could be on the line. And everyone in America will soon be calling depression hotlines: THERE ARE ONLY TWO GAMES LEFT IN TIM TEBOW'S COLLEGIATE CAREER!
No. 19 Cal at Washington -- 6:30 p.m. ET on FSN
Since Jahvid Best went down with his injury, Cal's Shane Vereen has rushed for 352 yards and four touchdowns in two games. I know you supposedly can't lose your job to injury. But what about your name? I propose Jahvid Better and Shane Best.
Sun Belt Conference
Florida Atlantic at Florida International -- 7 p.m. ET on ESPN 360
From afar, FIU's Golden Panther logo kind of looks like a fish jumping out of water. (Yes, that's all I have to say about this game. It's a Sun Belt game featuring a 4-7 team and a 3-8 team. What else do you want?)
Big East Conference
South Florida at Connecticut -- 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2
UConn head coach Randy Edsall is rumored to be among the leading candidates to take over for Mark Mangino at Kansas. Again, that's a rumor. I don't know if going from UConn to Kansas is really a career upgrade. Although, I can almost guarantee Edsall would get a bigger office.
Big 12 Championship Game
No. 3 Texas vs. No. 22 Nebraska -- 8 p.m. ET on ABC
Texas seems like a lock to win and get a spot in the BCS title game. But realize that over the 13-year history of the Big 12 championship game, the higher-ranked team has lost five times. Fortunately for Longhorns fans, Colt McCoy probably doesn't care about history. He is a sports management major.
ACC Championship Game
No. 10 Georgia Tech at Clemson -- 8 p.m. ET on ESPN
I would like to turn this game preview over to noted catchphrase comedian Jeff BCSworthy. Jeff? "Thanks. If your conference title game features a team that isn't even ranked in the BCS top 25 you might not be BCS-worthy. If your conference lost two games to teams from the Colonial Athletic Association, a conference that just had two teams drop football you might not be BCS-worthy. If you just lost a basketball tournament to the Big Ten you might not even be Division I." Thanks, Jeff.
Wisconsin at Hawaii -- 11:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2
Wisconsin and Hawaii have some history. In fact, in 1986 Hawaii beat Wisconsin for its first victory over a Big Ten team. Just check out those mid-'80s Hawaii uniforms. Wow. To think some people actually waste their time laughing at turtleneck enthusiasts.
DJ Gallo is the founder of and sole writer for the sports satire site SportsPickle.com. He also is a regular contributor to ESPN The Magazine and has written for The Onion and Cracked. His first book, "SportsPickle Presents: The View from the Upper Deck," is on sale now.
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