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Don’t Watch This; Watch That, Week 8: Your Guide to the College Football Schedule

Oktoberfest has proven it: I need a meat pounder.

In 1810, Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig—later King Ludwig I—married Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen in a ceremony that, today, gives dumb Americans like me an excuse to get drunk.

Wiesn [veez’n], as it’s known to locals—for “Therese’s Meadow,” or Theresienwiese [teh-RAY-zee-en-vee-zeh]—has since turned into a two-and-a-half-week spectacle, with millions descending on Munich to consumer millions-er more gallons of Oktoberfest beer.

In the MNW household, we too observe it—both of us can claim substantial German heritage, not that it’s necessary—with some Oktoberfest, though in a slightly-more muted fashion. We head to a local beer store that sells individual cans and bottles of almost-exclusively Minnesota beer, pick out between six and ten cans or crowlers.

In the past, that’s meant a spread of beer as elaborate as this:

MNW Oktoberfest, 2021

To accompany that, we tend to go pretty formulaic: pretzels and cheese (usually just canned cheese, though occasionally, like the year pictured, I’ll make a dip), brats and kraut, and some sort of side like Kartoffelpuffer (potato pancakes) or Käsespätzle (cheesy egg noodles with caramelized onions). We sample them as I cook, play cribbage, eat, and then usually finish them off later around a bonfire.

Last year’s adventure of Oktoberfest with a two-month-old ended in a fight (put down the baby monitor), so the pressure was on this year. We took kiddo to our favorite beer store, Ombibulous [see sidebar], and came up with a little seven-can spread, since it’s a little out of season:

  • Boom Island (Minnetonka) Oktoberfest
  • Oliphant Brewing (Somerset, WI) Blizzard of ‘91 Pecan Pumpkin Ale
  • Boom Island Punkin Pie
  • La Dona Cerveceria (Minneapolis) Oktubrefest
  • Junkyard (Moorhead) Unckle Chuck’s Czech
  • Utepils (Minneapolis) Receptional
  • Summit (St. Paul) Oktoberfest [not pictured]

It was a slightly disappointing haul, but that’s entirely on us. By sheer accident we’d held it on October 9 the first three years of doing it, did it again on October 9 last year to make it a tradition...and then my work schedule forced us to move it to last weekend.

So we decided something a little nicer than brats was in order. I put together a slightly more robust offering: Jägerschnitzel (meat—in this case, pork—that’s pounded, breaded, and fried) with Jägersoße (a mushroom gravy) and a side of Käsespätzle (cheesy noodles with caramelized onions).

We went to the grocery store, got some good cheese (mostly Jahrlberg with a little Gruyere) and all the noodles and fixings, got home, and got to work. I had spent the morning with MNWildkit, so Mrs. MNW played with her in the living room while I started caramelizing onions and, of course, drinking beer.

There was just one problem: the pork was far too thick for Jägerschnitzel.

I must have made an audible “Hmmm,” because my wife asked what was wrong. Turning to her, with a straight face, I responded, “I need a meat pounder.”

After about a minute of beer-aided laughter, she finally stopped and asked me if I meant a meat tenderizer. I mean...sure? But I think “meat pounder” is a much better branding choice.

We settled on the potato masher—finding the tent stake mallet and wrapping it in cling film probably would’ve been better, but what can you do—and it did the trick rather nicely. But you be the judge:

All told, add the Jägerschnitzel to the Käsespätzle, toss some Jägersoße on it, and throw in our beers—I believe this was the La Doña Oktubrefest—for good measure, and this is what we got:

One of my best efforts, I think. We’ll see if I can replicate it ever again. Maybe next year it’ll include me in a Gamsbart...

Thursday Evening
Don’t Watch This

NC Central Eagles at Morgan State Bears [6:30pm, ESPNU]

{NFL} Jacksonville Jaguars at New Orleans Saints [7:15pm, Prime]
{MLB} Philadelphia Phillies at Arizona Diamondbacks [4:07pm, TBS]
{MLB} Houston Astros at Texas Rangers [7:03pm, FS1]
{NHL} Chicago at Colorado Avalanche [9:30pm, ESPN]
{WSOC} Ohio State vs. Rutgers [5pm, BTN]
{WSOC} Wisconsin vs. Maryland [7pm, BTN]

Watch That

Rice Owls at Tulsa Golden Hurricane

6pm | ESPN2 | Tulsa -3 | O/U 58.5

James Madison Dukes at Marshall Thundering Herd

6pm | ESPN | JMU -3.5 | O/U 49.5

SE Louisiana Lions at Northwestern State Demons

7pm | ESPN | 0-7 (0-3 Southland) vs. 0-5 (0-1 Southland)

Now, fair reader, you’re saying it’s a cop-out to put three out of the four games in “Watch That” territory. And you’re partially right! But each of these games has a certainly quality launching them into the stratosphere that is a “Watch That” designation:

Best Game: James Madison-Marshall.

The Dukes are flying high—they went on the road in the non-conference and beat both Virginia and Utah State in their houses (admittedly those aren’t great teams, but that’s a helluva feat regardless), then toppled Sun Belt contender Troy down in Alabama. They’re ineligible for the postseason, though, as part of their transition to FBS—even despite petitioning the NCAA for bowl eligibility. It led RedditCFB to an interesting conclusion, albeit one I disagree with ever so slightly:

CC to RedditCFB: you have the option of an ALASKAGAME and you settle for Hawai’i? I love the Hawai’i Bowl as much as—some might say more than—the next guy, but when Puerto Rico and Alaska are on the table, you can’t just limit yourself to the expected. JMU has the chance to break barriers; I, for one, am rooting for them to do it.

Disgusting-est Game: Southeast Louisiana at Northwestern State.

The 186th-ranked team, by Jeff Sagarin, heads to the 233rd-rated squad. Neither has won a game—they’re a combined 0-12 (0-4 Southland). That’s a little unfair to SELA, who got body-bagged by Mississippi State and South Alabama but has lost by one score in each of their last three to Tarleton (14-13), Incarnate Word (33-26), and Lamar (30-24). The Demons are particularly putrid—they lost to Incarnate Word 66-7 in their opener and have cracked 20 points just once this year.

I must paint them.

Drunkest Game: Rice at Tulsa.

Why, you ask?


Good evening! You made it! And you’ll watch...

This poll is closed

  • 22%
    The Best
    (21 votes)
  • 6%
    The Worst
    (6 votes)
  • 33%
    The Drunkest
    (31 votes)
  • 5%
    The Blandest Shieldball I can get, thanks
    (5 votes)
  • 24%
    The Baseball
    (23 votes)
  • 7%
    The Golden Bachelor
    (7 votes)
93 votes total Vote Now

Friday Evening
Don’t Watch This

{MLB} Houston at Texas [4:07pm, FS1]
{NHL} New Jersey Devils at New York Islanders [6:30pm, NHLN]
{USL1} Charlotte Independence vs. Greenville Triumph [6:30pm, ESPN+]
{MSOC} Maryland vs. Indiana [7:30pm, BTN]
{Liga MX} Atlas vs. Mazatlan [8pm, TUDN]
{Liga MX} Juarez vs. Pachuca [8:06pm, FOX Deportes]
{MHKY} Ohio State at Michigan [5pm, BTN]

Watch That

SMU Cocaineponies at Temple Owls

6pm | ESPN2 | SMU -20.5 | O/U 55.5

Philadelphia at Arizona

7:07pm | TBS

#1 Minnesota at #5 North Dakota

7pm | Midco, FOX9, NCHCtv

A really stupid postscript to the Jägerschnitzel story: on Sunday we went to my in-laws for a birthday celebration for the mother-in-law. A fine time. But we were asked to bring an appetizer and a vegetable.

Reader, I can sit down and research, then whip up, that full Oktoberfest meal in a couple hours. But nothing paralyzes me quite like having to negotiate with my wife what we will bring for her exacting mother.

The appetizer she settled on was a cheese ball. In the process, I realized I’d never made a cheese ball before. Which is dumb, because it’s just a dip that you roll into a ball and refrigerate. But I got looked in on at least three times while making it, asking if I put too much garlic powder in there or if we should bring something else, too.

So I added an extra shake of pepper, just to really get back at the whole family.


The lineup is the equivalent of pre-peppered dip.

This poll is closed

  • 27%
    I’ll try playoff baseball, I guess.
    (26 votes)
  • 16%
    (16 votes)
  • 18%
    (18 votes)
  • 3%
    (3 votes)
  • 8%
    You’ve been neglecting a sport that I love, MNW, and now you’re going to hear about it!
    (8 votes)
  • 25%
    You sure know how to make a dip, MNW.
    (24 votes)
95 votes total Vote Now

Saturday Morning
Don’t Watch This

UCF Knights at #6 Oklahoma Sooners (-19, O/U 66) [11am, ABC]
#22 Air Force Falcons (-10.5, O/U 34.5) at Navy Midshipmen [11am, CBS]
Mississippi State Bulldogs at Arkansas Razorbacks (-6, O/U 48.5) [11am, ESPN]
Rutgers Scarlet Knights (-5, O/U 40) at Indiana Hoosiers [11am, BTN]
Boston College Eagles at Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (-4.5, O/U 60) [11am, ACCN]
Baylor Bears at Cincinnati Bearcats (-3.5, O/U 50) [11am, ESPN+]
Western Michigan Broncos at Ohio Bobcats (-17, O/U 52.5) [11am, CBSSN]
Norfolk State Spartans at Howard Bison [11am, ESPNU]

{Serie A} Torino vs. Inter Milan [11am, Paramount+]
{Bundesliga} Mainz 05 vs. Bayern Munich [11:30am, ESPN+]
{Eredivisie} PSV vs. Fortuna Sittard [11:45am, ESPN+]

Watch That

Memphis Tigers at UAB Blazers

11am | ESPN2 | Memphis -6.5 | O/U 61

#7 Penn State Nittany Lions at #3 Ohio State Buckeyes

11am | FOX | OSU -4.5 | O/U 45.5

Chelsea vs. Arsenal

11:30am | NBC

In class today we were talking about the 1920s and the rise of radio advertising—to get it started, we were all listing (or singing) famous jingles. Students groaned when one person started singing “Whopper Whopper Whopper Whopper”, others laughed at “Save biiiig money at Menarrrrds,” and then I had the audacity to ask if they’d ever heard the radio commercial of Kars for Kids:

Crickets. I was surprised. Then one quiet student in the back audibly muttered, “That’s because you’re old.”

I may have threatened another student with scissors later that lecture. I was rattled.


Good morning!

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    Penn State-Ohio State
    (103 votes)
  • 3%
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    (0 votes)
  • 11%
    My Big Ten team is playing at this time!
    (17 votes)
  • 1%
    Something else!
    (2 votes)
  • 5%
    "K-A-R-S, Kars for Kiiids"
    (9 votes)
  • 9%
    holy shit mnw you are an ear terrorist
    (15 votes)
151 votes total Vote Now

Saturday Afternoon
Don’t Watch This

Charlotte 49ers at East Carolina Pirates (-6.5, O/U 40.5) [1pm, ESPN+]
UL Monroe Warhawks at Georgia Southern Eagles (-17, O/U 49.5) [1pm, ESNP+]
Akron Zips at Bowling Green Falcons (-7.5, O/U 38) [1pm, ESPN+]
Washington State Cougars at #9 Oregon Ducks (-20, O/U 62) [2:30pm, ABC]
#17 Tennessee Volunteers at #11 Alabama Crimson Tide (-9, O/U 48.5) [2:30pm, CBS]
South Carolina Gamecocks at #20 Missouri Tigers (-7, O/U 60) [2:30pm, SECN]
North Texas Mean Green at #23 Tulane Green Wave (-20, O/U 63) [2:30pm, ESPN2]
Pittsburgh Panthers at Wake Forest Demon Deacons (-1, O/U 45.5) [2:30pm, ACCN]
South Florida Bulls (-2, O/U 54.5) at UConn Huskies [2:30pm, CBSSN]
Oklahoma State Cowboys at West Virginia Mountaineers (-3.5, O/U 49.5) [2:30pm, ESPN]
Central Michigan Chippewas (-4.5, O/U 40.5) at Balls Tate Robotbirds [2:30pm, ESPN+]
Eastern Michigan Eagles at Northern Illinois Huskies (-12, O/U 45) [2:30pm, ESPN+]
Buffalo Bulls (-7, O/U 44) at Kent State Golden Flashes [2:30pm, ESPN+]
#8 Texas Longhorns (-23.5, O/U 61) at Houston Cougars [3pm, FOX]

{Serie A} Sassuolo vs. Lazio [1:45pm, Paramount+]
{EPL} Sheffield United vs. Manchester United [2pm, Peacock]
{La Liga} Celta de Vigo vs. Atletico Madrid [2pm, ESPN+]
{Eredivisie} Ferenoord vs. Vitesse [2pm, ESPN+]
{Eredivisie} AZ vs. Heerenveen [2pm, ESPN+]
{CPL} Cavalry vs. Pacific [3pm, FOX Soccer Plus]

Watch That

#1 South Dakota State Jackrabbits at #12 Southern Illinois Salukis

2pm | ESPN+ and maybe Marquee?

Toledo Rockets at Miami Hydroxide Redhawks

3pm | ESPNU | Toledo -2 | O/U 48.5

Your Family Loves You. Please Seek Help

Minnesota Golden Gophers at #24 Iowa Hawkeyes (-3.5, O/U 31.5) [2:30pm, NBC]
Northwestern Wildcats at Nebraska Cornhuskers (-11.5, O/U 41.5) [2:30pm, BTN]
wisconsin badgers (-2.5, O/U 41.5) at Illinois Fighting Illini [2:30pm, FS1]

There’s nothing more I can say. I know it won’t deter you. Just remember that there are people out there who love you in spite of this.


Please. I’m begging you.

This poll is closed

  • 2%
    South Dakota State-Southern Illinois
    (3 votes)
  • 2%
    Toledo-Miami Hydroxide
    (3 votes)
  • 44%
    SHOOT IT INTO MY VEINS: Floyd Edition
    (64 votes)
  • 20%
    (30 votes)
  • 22%
    (32 votes)
  • 8%
    Something else
    (13 votes)
145 votes total Vote Now

Saturday Evening
Don’t Watch This

UTSA Roadrunners (-3, O/U 59.5) at FAU Owls [5pm, ESPN+]
Virginia Cavaliers at #10 North Carolina Tar Heels (-23.5, O/U 57) [5:30pm, The CW]
#13 Ole Miss Rebels (-6.5, O/U 55) at Auburn Tigers [6pm, ESPN]
Texas Tech Red Raiders (-3, O/U 51) at BYU Cougars [6pm, FS1]
TCU Horned Frogs at Kansas State Wildcats (-6.5, O/U 59) [6pm, ESPN2]
Appalachian State Mountaineers (-6.5, O/U 53.5) at Old Dominion Monarchs [6pm, NFLN]
Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (-10, O/U 60.5) at Arkansas State Red Wolves [6pm, ESPN+]
Colorado State Rams at UNLV Rebels (-8, O/U 64) [6pm, MWN]
#2 Michigan Wolverines (-24, O/U 46.5) at Michigan State Spartans [6:30pm, NBC]
#16 Duke Blue Devils at #4 Florida State Seminoles (-14.5, O/U 49) [6:30pm, ABC]
Army Black Knights at #19 LSU Tigers (-31, O/U 58) [6:30pm, SECN]
Clemson Tigers (-3, O/U 48.5) at Miami Hurricanes [7pm, ACCN]

{MLS Decision Day: Eastern Conference} [5pm, MLS Pass on Apple TV]
{USL} Memphis 901 vs. Louisville City [5:30pm, ESPN+]
{USL} Pittsburgh Riverhounds vs. Detroit City FC [6pm, ESPN+]
{NHL} Toronto Maple Leafs at Tampa Bay Lightning [6pm, NHLN]
{USL} Tampa Bay Rowdies vs. Birmingham Legion [6:30pm, ESPN+]

Watch That

Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors at New Mexico Lobos

5pm | Mountain West Network | Hawai’i -1 | O/U 60

Utah State Aggies at San Jose State Spartans

6pm | CBSSN | SJSU -4 | O/U 66.5

#14 Utah Utes at #18 USC Trojans

7pm | FOX | USC -7 | O/U 54

Georgia State Panthers at Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns

7pm | ESPNU | Cajuns -3 | O/U 63

#1 Wisconsin at #2 Nebraska

7pm | BTN | Preview

Look, reader: I know that you ignored my recommendations in the afternoon time slot. I know that you watched Iowa-Minnesota. You’re disgusting and you should be ashamed of yourself...

...but I love you. And I want to help.

(Man, can you tell I was raised Catholic?)

Thankfully we’ll get you back on the wide-open and fun—the Mountain West has been disturbingly fun this year, from Air Force’s meteoric rise to Wyoming beating people with rocks and Hawai’i turning back into a random number generator.

Plus, there’s really the “marquee” game I’m most excited for: Utah-USC. The Yoots have rolled up three straight against the Trojans, not just with their bludgeoning defense but with an offense that has put up 42, 43, and 47 in the three matchups across 2021 and 2022 (including the 47-24 pounding in the 2022 Pac-12 Championship). Can Caleb Williams and USC bounce back, or is the bullyball of Kyle Whittingham going to solve them yet again? I am genuinely excited to find out.


Time for a palate-cleanser, yes?

This poll is closed

  • 32%
    Hell yeah: Utah-USC
    (39 votes)
  • 0%
    Hell yeah: USU-SJSU
    (1 vote)
  • 3%
    Hell yeah: Hawai’i-New Mexico
    (4 votes)
  • 0%
    Hell yeah: GSU-Cajuns
    (1 vote)
  • 31%
    Hell yeah: B1G Volleyball!
    (37 votes)
  • 31%
    Hell no: The Lesser Paul Bunyan it is.
    (37 votes)
119 votes total Vote Now

It’s late and I’m drunk...
Don’t Watch This

Nevada Wolf Pack at San Diego State (-13.5, O/U 48) [8pm, FS2]
Arizona State Sun Devils at #5 Washington Huskies (-26.5, O/U 59.5) [9:30pm, FS1]
#25 UCLA Bruins (-17, O/U 53.5) at Stanford Cardinal [9:30pm, ESPN]

{MLS Decision Day: Western Conference} [8pm, Apple TV]
{USL} San Antonio vs. Colorado Springs [8pm, ESPN+]
{USL1} Northern Colorado vs. Forward Madison [8pm, ESPN+]
{USL} Sacramento Republic vs. New Mexico United [9pm, ESPN+]
{USL} Orange County SC vs. Lokomotiv El Paso [9:30pm, ESP+]

Watch That

#2 Montana State Bobcats at #4 Sacramento State Hornets

9:30pm | ESPN2

If you tuned in for some FCS After Dark last week, you saw ranked Idaho get it together just a little too late, blitzed early by Montana and QB Clifton McDowell. It was hard to leave that game not impressed by the dynamic senior transfer—a little-used QB at Central Arkansas, he ran around and threw the ball around like the Cam Newtown clip making the rounds on Twitter recently (I can’t find the specific one, but it was this, more or less):

That’s a little overstating it, but the 6’4”, 224# McDowell was head and shoulders the best athlete on the field. Watch out for him and the Griz.

More broadly: you’re missing some good football if you don’t check out these FCS games—the Bobcats and Hornets should put on a show, too, in Sacramento on Saturday night: the Bobcats are dropping an FCS-best 45.5 ppg, while SacState holds its own at 30.2. Montana State QB Sean Chambers was held in check by South Dakota State, but he’s a great runner and can be an efficient passer in the Bobcats’ offense; Sacramento State has QB Kaiden Bennett, himself a threat to run and someone who slings it around a fair bit, too.

I like the Bobcats to walk out winners, but it’s a must-watch any way you slice it.


It’s late, I’m drunk, and I’m watching...

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Montana State-SacState
    (18 votes)
  • 1%
    (1 vote)
  • 8%
    (8 votes)
  • 10%
    (10 votes)
  • 7%
    Minnesota United, disappointing me yet again
    (7 votes)
  • 9%
    whatever the bar has on
    (9 votes)
  • 46%
    lol i passed out hours ago
    (46 votes)
99 votes total Vote Now

Please send all meat pounders to:

15 Yemen Road

Have a great weekend, everyone—enjoy the games.