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College Basketball On TV For January 29, 2011

Once again, thanks to things like golf and the Winter X Games, this Saturday's TV slate is busier the earlier in the day you plan on watching hoops. My TVs and remotes will be working overtime from between noon and 4 p.m. ET, for example.

The list of post 8 p.m. ET tip-offs, with a pair of notable exceptions, is especially underwhelming. So you're forgiven if you decide to check out something like the NHL All-Star Skills Competition (like I'll be doing).

My TV picks for the day after the jump.

Early Afternoon (ET)

HD TV: Georgetown Hoyas at Villanova Wildcats, ESPN/ESPN3 (12 p.m. ET)
The Hoyas took advantage of a trip to New Jersey and home rout of St. John's to get back to .500 in the Big East, while the Wildcats will look to get back on track after Providence handled them on Wednesday. This one, of course, features one of the best backcourt matchups of the season. prediction: Wildcats 75-69, 67 poss.

SD TV: Xavier Musketeers at Richmond Spiders, ESPN2/ESPN3 (12 p.m. ET)
The Spiders are a game behind the Musketeers in the A-10 race and will be looking to hand Xavier their first conference loss of the season. This is a great opportunity to check out two underrated guards, Richmond senior Kevin Anderson and Xavier's Mr. Everything Tu Holloway. prediction: Spiders 71-65, 64 poss.

Laptop: Florida Gators at Mississippi St. Bulldogs, CBS Regional/ (1 p.m. ET)
The Gators should handle the Bulldogs, except for the fact that they often struggle against Miss. State, particularly at the Hump (and the SEC Tournament, for that matter). It will be a short turnaround time for Rick Stansbury's team, as they fell to Vanderbilt on Thursday night. prediction: Gators 73-62, 65 poss.

Alt. Ch. 1: Minnesota Golden Gophers at Purdue Boilermakers, CBS Regional/CBS (1 p.m. ET)
The Boilermakers will attempt to rebound from the pounding they took at the hands of Ohio State on Tuesday night, while the Golden Gophers will look to claim their first road win over a Big Ten contender of the season, which will be difficult without Al Nolen's leadership. If Minnesota gets the mix of performances they got at home against Northwestern on Wednesday, they could give Purdue fits. prediction: Boilermakers 76-65, 67 poss.

Alt. Ch. 2: Louisville Cardinals at Connecticut Huskies, Big East Network/WHAS/MASN/CST/SNY/BHSN Tampa/ESPN3/Full Court (12 p.m. ET)
Once again, the Cardinals hit the road with the aim of picking up a victory over a team with NCAA hopes. Kemba Walker and the Huskies, winners of six in a row, will look to stop them and keep up their own red hot momentum. prediction: Huskies 73-69, 70 poss.

Mid-Afternoon (ET)

HD TV: Syracuse Orange at Marquette Golden Eagles, ESPNU (3 p.m. ET)
This is the first of three away from the Carrier Dome for the Orange, and perhaps playing away from home will help alleviate some of the pressure Jim Boeheim's team must be feeling after three straight losses. Meanwhile, the Golden Eagles suffered their first home loss of the season on Tuesday night, at the hands of SU's next opponent, UConn. prediction: Golden Eagles 75-73, 68 poss.

Alt. Ch.: Long Island Blackbirds at Monmouth Hawks, MSG/FCS Atlantic (2 p.m. ET)
I picked this game because it's the first chance I've had to see the Northeast Conference-leading Blackbirds this season, though they should handle a struggling Hawks team easily. prediction: Blackbirds 78-68, 72 poss.

Laptop: Butler Bulldogs at Valparaiso Crusaders, Horizon League Network/WNDY/WWRD/CSN Chicago/STO/ESPN3/Full Court (2 p.m. ET)
The Crusaders are still looking for their first ever win over the Bulldogs in Horizon League play, and this is their best chance since they joined the conference in the 2007-08 season. Valpo is tied with Cleveland State in the loss column for the league lead (the Vikings are at 4-6 Loyola-Chicago this afternoon), and Butler is tied for third along with Wright State. prediction: Crusaders 69-68, 65 poss.

Alt. Laptop: Colorado Buffaloes at Baylor Bears, Big 12 Network/YES/Altitude/ESPN3/Full Court (1:30 p.m. ET)
This is a crucial bubble game for teams sitting on the outside looking in, particularly for the Buffs, who could use another road win. prediction: Bears 76-70, 66 poss.

Late Afternoon (ET)

HD TV: Georgia Bulldogs at Kentucky Wildcats, ESPN/ESPN3 (4 p.m. ET)
The Bulldogs' profile would receive a major boost with a win at Rupp, and season sweep of the Wildcats. Don't dismiss the possibility out of hand. A slightly less-talented Georgia team gave UK a scare at Rupp last season, and won there in 2009. prediction: Wildcats 77-63, 67 poss.

SD TV: BYU Cougars at New Mexico Lobos, Versus (4 p.m. ET)
OK, Jimmer Fredette and BYU, you've taken control of the Mountain West race, thanks to your big win Wednesday night, but what will you do for an encore? How about grabbing a win at the always difficult Pit? prediction: Cougars 77-72, 71 poss..

Alt Ch.: Wisconsin Badgers at Penn St. Nittany Lions, Big Ten Network (4 p.m. ET)
The Badgers are hoping their trip to State College is more like Purdue or Maine's (yes, Maine) than Illinois and Michigan State's. A win over Wisconsin would do wonders for the Lions' marginal profile. prediction: Badgers 62-57, 53 poss.

Early Evening (ET)

HD TV: St. Mary's Gaels at Portland Pilots, ESPNU (7 p.m. ET)
The Gaels took control of the WCC race with their late Thursday win over Gonzaga, and they can potentially extend their advantage over second-place San Francisco with a win over the defensively-challenged Pilots. prediction: Gaels 76-68, 63 poss.

SD TV: Kansas St. Wildcats at Kansas Jayhawks, ESPN/ESPN3 (7 p.m. ET)
Since Big 12 play started, the Wildcats have gotten into a bad pattern, lose two, then win one. Well, since they just beat Baylor at home on Monday, you'd think a loss would be on the way. With the Jayhawks returning home for the first time since their 69-game Allen Fieldhouse ended, that's a safe assumption. prediction: Jayhawks 79-64, 73 poss.

Laptop: Arkansas Razorbacks at Vanderbilt Commodores, SEC on FSN//FS South/Sun Sports/FS Houston/FS Southwest/ESPN3/Full Court (6 p.m. ET)
The Razorbacks can get to 4-3 in the league with a victory at Memorial Gym, while earning a second valuable win over an East Division contender, which could boost their at-large chances. Meanwhile, Jeff Taylor, John Jenkins, and Festus Ezeli will look to lead the Commodores to their fourth straight win, and third in a row over a West opponent. prediction: Commodores 78-62, 71 poss.

Late Evening (ET)

HD TV: Missouri Tigers at Texas Longhorns, ESPNU (9 p.m. ET)
This has the potential to be the most entertaining game of the day. However, the Tigers may have trouble forcing their preferred tempo in Austin, and the Longhorns have been terrific on the defensive end of late (ranking No. 1 in the country in both adjusted defensive efficiency and eFG% defense per prediction: Longhorns 78-68, 73 poss.

SD TV: West Virginia Mountaineers at Cincinnati Bearcats, Big East Network/FS Ohio/MASN/MSG/FSN Pittsburgh/ESPN3/Full Court (8 p.m. ET)
Bob Huggins returns to Cincinnati once again, with a depleted Mountaineer team in tow. The Bearcats will look to add another profile-worthy home win just before a week off, which will end with a game at Pitt next Saturday. prediction: Bearcats 64-61, 63 poss.

For broadcast information for the rest of the Saturday slate, visit Matt Sarz's College Sports on TV site. Another good resource is the schedule page at BB State.

Please share your thoughts about today and tonight's action in the comments, after you sign up for a free SB Nation account, of course.

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