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Don’t Watch This; Watch That: Week 12.5 College Football Guide Celebrates SOUP SZN

From spicy sausage soup to spicy midweek MACtion, Don’t Watch This; Watch That has got you covered.

As it is week 17 or whatever of this nonsense, it’s getting tougher to find topics and prepare them well in advance. I’ve been squirreling away stuff for a historic photo retrospective, but that’s a lot of time and work for the 200 150 75 people who read this stupid column.

As a thank-you to those aforementioned 75 50 25 people, I’d like to give you my favorite fall soup recipe so you can have something on the table for dinner tonight—or your next fall Saturday in, gritting your teeth as your favorite team fumbles its way around the Big Ten West.

I made

Sausage, White Bean, and Kale Soup

A note: it’s possible I stole this from somewhere. All glory to them and to Our Lord and Savior Stefan Demos.

First, I personally recommend putting on whatever awful sports you can find. The assier the better.

I prepared this soup while watching Indiana-Illinois football.

Next—and it is very important you do this—get a classic Midwestern Crock-Pot.

You might be saying “But MNW, I only have a slow cooker!” or “But MNW, I have a new-fangled Crock-Pot I bought at Kohl’s for $19.99 on Black Friday!” or “There you go again, MNW, being needlessly pedantic.” Your soup will still taste fantastic, but it will not provide you the immaculate ambiance of the cabin on a snowy fall afternoon. Find a Crock-Pot with that classic white-and-blue flower motif, or the brown-and-orange styling. It should absolutely be a fire hazard and possibly have asbestos in the lining.

You’ll thank me later.

Start filling the Crock-Pot with the veggies, beans, and spices that’ll give this the vague prospect of healthiness.

  • 3ish carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 4-5ish stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cans of Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed
  • Salt, pepper, and oregano to taste—depending on how Lutheran your in-laws are.
  • 1 bay leaf, for some reason. I’m still not sure what a bay leaf does and have no interest in learning, but it doesn’t make soup actively worse, so go with it.

Toss all those in.

Next, time for the sausage. I recommend something with some really good flavor—the recipe as I’ve always followed it calls for Andouille sausage, but we’ve used flavored chicken sausage in a pinch. Play around with this as you see fit.

  • 1 standard horseshoe-shaped sausage (I’m sure this is an official measurement—I prefer Andouille)
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • MINIMUM 4 tablespoons of minced garlic

Slice the Andouille sausage—I shoot for as thinly as possible, because the more spoonfuls that have meat in them, the better. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet. Add a heaping helping of minced garlic and let’er sizzle.

Push them slices of Andouille around and smell that heavenly aroma. Don’t burn them, but let ‘em cook until you’ve got some delightful little Cajun pepperoni cups. Drain the oil and spoon the sausage slices and the garlic into the Crock-Pot.

Only thing left to do is add the broth:

  • 6-8 cups of chicken broth, depending on how brothy you like it
  • Up to 2 cups of water, depending on how chickeny you like your broth

Set the Crock-Pot to cook, either 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high. Then, 15-20 minutes before serving, add...

  • 3 cups of kale

Just drop the kale right on top of the broth. You don’t need to stir it in. Let it wilt on top of the broth for a little bit. Then serve, adding a little parmesan and cracked pepper if you feel fancy.

You’re welcome.

Tuesday Night
Don’t Watch This

Akron Zips at Eastern Michigan Eagles (-3.5, O/U 38.5) [6pm, CBSSN]

{MBB} wisconsin (-1.5, O/U 140.5) at Providence [5pm, FS1]
{MBB} St. Francis (PA) at Penn State [6pm, BTN]
{MBB} #9 Duke Blue Devils (-3.5, O/U 141.5) at #18 Michigan State Spartans [6pm, ESPN]
{MBB} #17 Kentucky at #1 Kansas (-6.5, O/U 147.5) [8:30pm, ESPN]

Watch That

Western Michigan Broncos at Northern Illinois Huskies

6pm | ESPNU | NIU -4.5 | O/U 56.5

Toledo Rockets at Bowling Green Falcons

6pm | ESPN2 | Toledo -9.5 | O/U 50.5

{MBB} Toledo at Wright State

6pm | ESPN+ | Wright -2.5 | O/U 168.5!

{MBB} #4 Marquette Golden Eagles at #23 Illinois Fighting Illini

7pm | FS1 | Illinois -1.5 | O/U 148.5 | Gavitt Games

{MBB} Iowa Hawkeyes at #8 Creighton Bluejays

9pm | FS1 | Creighton -11.5 | O/U 164.5 | Gavitt Games

As Kind of... so expertly detailed, Toledo is already in the MAC Championship Game and has the chance to end Bowling Green's hopes tonight:

This one's for the I-75 Trophy, marking the highway along which both schools are located:

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 15 Toledo at Bowling Green Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Trivia Question: Name the other two NCAA rivalry games (any division) that use an interstate highway sign (or recreation, whatever) as a trophy. Partial credit for the highway, full credit for the teams.

Hint in the next section.


Good evening! Plans?

This poll is closed

  • 22%
    I-75 Trophy
    (14 votes)
  • 3%
    (2 votes)
  • 33%
    My college basketball team is playing at this time
    (21 votes)
  • 4%
    My college basketball team isn't playing, but I'm watching Duke-MSU
    (3 votes)
  • 3%
    My college basketball team isn't playing, but I'm watching Marquette-Illinois
    (2 votes)
  • 3%
    My college basketball team isn’t playing, but I’m watching Iowa-Creighton
    (2 votes)
  • 17%
    Something else entirely
    (11 votes)
  • 12%
    I'll be making soup
    (8 votes)
63 votes total Vote Now

Wednesday Night
Don’t Watch This

Central Michigan Chippewas at Ohio Bobcats (-10.5, O/U 46.5) [6pm, ESPNU]

{MBB} Albany at Seton Hall [5:30pm, FS1]
{MBB} Merrimack at Ohio State [6pm, BTN]
{WBB} Northwestern at #10 Notre Dame [6pm, ACCN]
{MBB} Georgetown at Rutgers [7:30pm, FS1]

Watch That

Buffalo Bulls at Miami-Ohio Redhawks

6pm | ESPN2 | M(OH) -8.5 | O/U 39.5

{VB} Ohio State at Illinois

8pm | BTN

I wanted to have something important to tell you here, but neither MAC game is great. Of the two, I am more intrigued by what Miami's defense can do against a Buffalo offense that should be a lot better than it is.

I would also like to advise Jamey Chadwell to turn off his location service on Twitter.

And I wonder if the betting line on the next Mississippi State coach shifted.

Trivia Hint: One is FBS, the other is Midwestern D-III.



This poll is closed

  • 14%
    (8 votes)
  • 10%
    (6 votes)
  • 14%
    (8 votes)
  • 21%
    (12 votes)
  • 1%
    The Masked Singer
    (1 vote)
  • 37%
    I'll be making soup
    (21 votes)
56 votes total Vote Now

Enjoy the games and the soup.