College football is here once more and that means that you’ve got an opportunity to enjoy one of the most enjoyable sports on earth (and presumably the rest of the Milky Way galaxy).
Week 0 (as the kids say) of the 2022 college football season is upon us. While there aren’t many truly thrilling games going on this week and the Mississippi State Bulldogs aren’t playing right now, that doesn’t matter much right now. It’s college football. It’s back. You’re going to watch it and enjoy it.
But what games should you focus on this week? What will present an enjoyable viewing experience?
Here are three games you should check out during Week 0:
Nebraska vs. Northwestern in Dublin, Ireland (11:30 a.m. CT) on FOX
Are either of these teams any good? Not particularly. Is it college football in Ireland? Yes. Will that be bizarre and weird? Probably.
Both of these teams are trying to get this season started off on the right foot after underwhelming and infuriating 2021 campaigns. Both of these teams managed to get just three wins a piece a season ago. And that is the sort of college football experience we, as a country, have decided should represent the sport to an international audience.
Nebraska could be an interesting team to watch this year. ESPN’s FPI favors them in eight games (though it’d be fair to expect that the Huskers to win fewer games than that) and Scott Frost absolutely has to get some wins to cool off that hot seat he’s on. Of course, a loss to Northwestern on another continent probably won’t help him out any.
This game could be a fun one to watch if you aren’t emotionally attached to either program.
UConn vs. Utah State (3 p.m. CT) on FS1
OK, look, I normally don’t endorse watching anything related to UConn football at all. It’s probably not enjoyable for UConn fans and it certainly won’t ever be enjoyable for folks who don’t like UConn.
I like Utah State. I used to start dynasties with them on those old EA Sports NCAA football Playstation 2 games. I love their stadium and where their campus is. I considered going to grad school there. Utah State is cool.
Also, Utah State is led by Blake Anderson, formerly a very successful head coach for the Arkansas State Red Wolves. Anderson is a cool guy and a brilliant coach and, in Year 1, he led the Aggies to an 11-3 record which included wins over Washington State, San Diego State, and Oregon State. They won the Mountain West and had a thrilling year.
They’re a fun team to watch. I fully endorse watching them any chance you get. Anderson is the only current head coach other than Mike Leach I’d really want coaching in Starkville (it won’t ever happen, but a guy can dream) and the Aggies are likely to continue succeeding under his guidance going forward.
(Side note: if you happen to want more Utah State coverage, check out Patrick Mayhorn’s work over at The Aggship.)
Vanderbilt vs. Hawai’i (9:30 p.m. CT) on CBSSN
Stay up late. Watch some football after dark featuring two teams that were absolute disasters a season ago. Tune in to the Vanderbilt Commodores and Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors.
This game may not be great! It will likely keep you up past your bedtime and cause you to be pretty sleepy as you stumble around trying to make it to church tomorrow morning. But it’s college football and it’s Week 0. You have a moral obligation to check this game out.
Or maybe you don’t.
You can also check out any of the other games that are happening this week. You aren’t restricted to these three. Wyoming at Illinois could be pretty interesting. Duquesne at Florida State might be an interesting preview into whether or not there’ll be a coaching search in Tallahassee in the near future.
Heck, there are plenty of games for you to check out this week. Just sit back and enjoy it a little bit. College football is finally back.