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On The Menu: Saturday, February 6, 2016

Saturday's slate, which is unusually busy because of Super Bowl Sunday's limited schedule, features a whopping four Top 25 matchups.

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Game information courtesy Matt College Sports on TV Website, which has even more games listed and more specific info on coverage for regional sports networks and American Sports Network telecasts.

All times listed are Eastern, adjust accordingly.

ACC

No. 9 Virginia Cavaliers (18-4, 7-3) at Pittsburgh Panthers (17-4, 6-3), 12 p.m. (ACC Network Regional/ESPN3)
Boston College Eagles (7-15, 0-9) at No. 19 Louisville Cardinals (18-4, 7-2), 12 p.m. (ACC Network Regional/ESPN3)
Florida State Seminoles (15-7, 5-5) at Wake Forest Demon Deacons (10-12, 1-9), 12 p.m. (ACC RSNs/ESPN3)
North Carolina State Wolfpack (12-11, 2-8) at Duke Blue Devils (16-6, 5-4), 2 p.m. (ESPN)
Clemson Tigers (14-8, 7-3) at Virginia Tech Hokies (12-11, 4-6), 4 p.m. (ACC RSNs/ESPN3)
No. 2 North Carolina Tar Heels (18-4, 7-3) at Notre Dame Fighting Irish (15-7, 6-4), 7 p.m. (ESPN)

The most intriguing games here are the first and last ones, as the Cavaliers will look to dominate on the road for the second Saturday afternoon in succession and the Tar Heels and Fighting Irish are both coming off road losses. Clemson snuck into my Friday projection, but the Tigers will drop out with a loss in Blacksburg. Florida State will find itself in trouble with a loss in Winston-Salem as well. Meanwhile, Duke and Louisville will be favored to pick up home victories over squads likely bound for a Tuesday game in Greensboro Washington, D.C., though I'll be interested to see how motivated the Cardinals are after the announcement of their self-imposed postseason ban.

Big 12

No. 7 Kansas Jayhawks (18-4, 6-3) at TCU Horned Frogs (10-12, 1-8), 12 p.m. (ESPN)
No. 13 Iowa State Cyclones (16-6, 5-4) at Oklahoma State Cowboys (11-11, 2-7), 2 p.m. (ESPN2)
Texas Tech Red Raiders (13-8, 3-6) at Texas Longhorns (15-7, 6-3), 2 p.m. (Longhorn Network)
No. 1 Oklahoma Sooners (19-2, 7-2) at Kansas State Wildcats (13-9, 2-7), 6 p.m. (ESPNU)
No. 15 Baylor Bears (17-5, 6-3) at No. 14 West Virginia Mountaineers (18-4, 7-2), 8 p.m. (ESPN2)

While it's been three years since the Jayhawks last fell in Fort Worth, TCU gave KU a fight last season, falling only by three. Iowa State must be careful in Stillwater, as the Cowboys are riding high following their victory in Lubbock on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Red Raiders can give their fading hopes a boost with by completing a season sweep of the rising Longhorns. Oklahoma should be able to beat K-State for a second time, but this will be the first meeting of the season between the Bears and Mountaineers, who happen to meet again to close the regular season. Look for both contests to play a role in determining who claims the Big 12 crown, though the Mountaineers will have a decided advantage in Morgantown tonight, especially with their defense.

Big East

Marquette Golden Eagles (15-8, 4-6) at No. 6 Xavier Musketeers (20-2, 8-2), 12 p.m. (FS1)
No. 3 Villanova Wildcats (19-3, 9-1) at No. 11 Providence Friars (18-5, 6-4), 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
DePaul Blue Demons (8-14, 2-8) at Creighton Bluejays (14-9, 5-5), 2 p.m. (select FSN outlets)
Butler Bulldogs (15-7, 4-6) at St. John's Red Storm (7-16, 0-10), 4:30 p.m. (select FSN outlets)
Georgetown Hoyas (13-10, 6-4) at Seton Hall Pirates (16-6, 6-4), 9 p.m. (CBSSN)

The Wildcats' attempt to avenge their 82-76 overtime home loss to the Friars is the main attraction here, though the game will have a different flavor if Nova's Daniel Ochefu and Providence's Ben Bentil are both out injured. Creighton and Butler must both avoid the dreaded bad loss on this Saturday, while even a shocking road win at Xavier wouldn't be enough to get Marquette above the cut line. From a bubble perspective, Newark is the place to be this evening, as the Pirates and Hoyas meet for the first of two games in an 11-day span that will go a long way toward determining if either will find a plae in the field of 68.

Big Ten

No. 10 Michigan State Spartans (19-4, 6-4) at Michigan Wolverines (17-6, 7-3), 2 p.m. (CBS)
Rutgers Scarlet Knights (6-17, 0-10) at Nebraska Cornhuskers (12-11, 4-6), 2 p.m. (ESPNU)
No. 18 Purdue Boilermakers (19-4, 7-3) at No. 4 Maryland Terrapins (20-3, 9-2), 4 p.m. (ESPN)
No. 22 Indiana Hoosiers (19-4, 9-1) at Penn State Nittany Lions (11-12, 2-8), 8 p.m. (BTN)

Not only does Michigan State's trip to Ann Arbor have NCAA implications, especially for the Wolverines, in need of a strong performance following Tuesday's loss to Indiana, but the winner also has a shot at earning a bye to the Big Ten quarterfinals. Purdue is also in the thick of that chase, though they could conceivably drop with a loss in College Park, where Maryland has yet to lose in its short Big Ten history. Indiana should be able to retain a share of the conference lead, as they visit struggling Penn State. On the other hand, Nebraska has all but fallen out of the picture with three straight defeats, and a fourth—to woeful Rutgers—would virtually end the Huskers' at-large hopes.

Pac-12

No. 23 Arizona Wildcats (18-5, 6-4) at Washington Huskies (15-7, 7-3), 4:30 p.m. (FOX)
Stanford Cardinal (11-9, 4-5) at California Golden Bears (14-8, 4-5), 4 p.m. (ESPN2)
Arizona State Sun Devils (12-11, 2-8) at Washington State Cougars (9-13, 1-9), 6:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks National, Washington, Arizona)
Colorado Buffaloes (17-6, 6-4) at Oregon State Beavers (13-8, 4-6), 8:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks National, Rocky Mountain, Oregon)

Other than the Sun Devils' trip to Pullman, it's an intriguing day in the Pac-12, even if only one game will receive wide national distribution. That would be Arizona's trip to Seattle, where they last lost in 2012. With a win, the Huskies can remain a loss behind Oregon in the conference race, with the Ducks hosting Utah on Sunday. Stanford can complete a season sweep of California. The loser in Berkeley's losing streak will rise to three. In the late tip, Colorado will look to rebound from its Thursday blowout loss in Eugene, while the Beavers are aiming to complete a helpful sweep for their NCAA hopes.

SEC

Missouri Tigers (8-14, 1-8) at Alabama Crimson Tide (12-9, 3-6), 3 p.m. (SEC Network)
No. 25 South Carolina Gamecocks (19-3, 6-3) at No. 8 Texas A&M Aggies (18-4, 7-2), 4 p.m. (ESPNU)
Florida Gators (15-7, 6-3) at No. 20 Kentucky Wildcats (16-6, 6-3), 4 p.m. (CBS)
Auburn Tigers (9-12, 3-6) at Georgia Bulldogs (12-8, 5-4), 5:30 p.m. (SEC Network)
Mississippi State Bulldogs (9-12, 2-7) at LSU Tigers (), 6 p.m. (ESPN2)
Vanderbilt Commodores () at Ole Miss Rebels (14-8, 7-2), 8 p.m. (ESPNU)
Tennessee Volunteers (11-11, 4-5) at Arkansas Razorbacks (11-11, 4-5), 8 p.m. (SEC Network)

Surprisingly, there is a Top 25 matchup in the SEC, though the Gamecocks will likely drop out of the poll with a loss in College Station. The most exciting contest among the seven on Saturday's SEC slate is Florida's trip to Kentucky. The Gators have won six Saturday games in a row, last losing at Michigan State on December 12th, while the Wildcats have dropped two in a row, both on the road. Unfortunately for UF, UK is perfect at home so far this year. LSU and Vanderbilt both face potentially tricky opponents, though the Tigers at least get Mississippi State in Baton Rouge.

American Athletic

Cincinnati Bearcats (17-6, 7-3) at Memphis Tigers (13-9, 4-5), 12 p.m. (ESPN2)
Temple Owls (13-8, 7-3) at UCF Knights (11-9, 5-4), 12 p.m. (ESPNU)

The Bearcats and Owls are currently tied for second in the American (and the first seed in the conference tournament), and both squads hit the road for noon tips. Cincinnati's trip is a bit more intriguing, as they'll not be too sure what to expect in Memphis. The Tigers seemed to give up late in their Thursday loss to UConn, also at the FedEx Forum. The pair split their games in 2015, with each home team winning.

Atlantic 10

George Washington Colonials (17-5, 6-3) at VCU Rams (17-5, 9-0), 12 p.m. (CBSSN)

The Rams have a 13th consecutive win on their mind as they welcome the Colonials to Richmond. On the other hand, GW needs a quality win for its bubble hopes, though the rematch in D.C. on February 27th may be a better bet.

Elsewhere

North Florida Ospreys (18-7, 7-1) at Florida Gulf Coast Eagles (13-11, 4-4), 7 p.m. (ESPN3)

These two met just a week ago in Jacksonville, and the A-Sun leaders claimed an 82-76 victory. However, the Ospreys suffered their first conference loss on Monday, at home to then-2-5 Stetson.

Hawai'i Rainbow Warriors (17-3, 6-1) at Cal Poly Mustangs (8-13, 2-6), 10 p.m. (ESPNU)

With a win over the Mustangs, the Rainbow Warriors will tie idle UC Irvine for the Big West lead, with the two meeting in Honolulu on Thursday.

No. 21 Wichita State Shockers (17-5, 11-0) at Illinois State Redbirds (13-11, 7-4), 10 p.m. (ESPN2)

The Redbirds are one of four teams that sit in a tie for second in the Missouri Valley, four games behind the Shockers.

New Mexico Lobos (14-8, 7-2) at San Diego State Aztecs (17-6, 10-0), 4 p.m. (CBSSN)

This is the first of two meetings between the top two teams in the Mountain West standings between now and the conference tournament in Las Vegas.

Mount St. Mary's Mountaineers (10-14, 7-4) at Wagner Seahawks (14-8, 7-4), 4 p.m. (NEC Front Row)

We again have a recent rematch on the Saturday slate, as the Seawhawks defeated the Mountaineers in Emmitsburg on Saturday. On Thursday, both surprisingly lost, ceding the NEC lead to Fairleigh Dickinson in the process.

Furman Paladins (14-10, 8-3) at Chattanooga Mocs (20-3, 9-1), 5 p.m. (SoCon Digital Network)

The Mocs saw off Wofford on Thursday, but tonight's they'll welcome the Terriers' regional rivals, who currently sit two games behind Chattanooga in the SoCon race. The Paladins won the first meeting of the season in Greenville, 70-55.

Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks (15-5, 8-0) at Houston Baptist Huskies (14-8, 8-1), 8 p.m. (Houston Baptist University)

The Southland's first and second place teams meet in Houston. They'll meet again in Nacogdoches on February 27th.

IUPUI Jaguars (11-14, 7-3) at South Dakota State Jackrabbits (18-5, 7-2), 8 p.m. (Midco SN/ESPN3)

The Jackrabbits are currently a half-game behind IPFW in the Summit, while the Jaguars are tied for third with Omaha. IUPUI won the first meeting on January 7th in Indy, 74-67.

Gonzaga Bulldogs (18-5, 10-2) at Pepperdine Waves (14-9, 7-5), 12 a.m. (ESPN2)

Thanks to Saintt Mary's loss to BYU on Thursday, the Bulldogs are now a half-game up on the Gaels in the WCC.

Viewing Picks

Early Afternoon Tips

George Washington at VCU, 12 p.m. (CBSSN)
Virginia at Pittsburgh, 12 p.m. (ACC Network Regional/ESPN3)
Marquette at Xavier, 12 p.m. (FS1)
Cincinnati at Memphis, 12 p.m. (ESPN2)
Florida State at Wake Forest, 12 p.m. (ACC RSNs/ESPN3)
Kansas at TCU, 12 p.m. (ESPN)
Boston College at Louisville, 12 p.m. (ACC Network Regional/ESPN3)
Temple at UCF, 12 p.m. (ESPNU)

Mid-Afternoon Tips

Michigan State at Michigan, 2 p.m. (CBS)
Villanova at Providence, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Texas Tech at Texas, 2 p.m. (Longhorn Network)
Iowa State at Oklahoma State, 2 p.m. (ESPN2)
North Carolina State at Duke, 2 p.m. (ESPN)
DePaul at Creighton, 2 p.m. (select FSN outlets)
Boise State at Air Force, 2 p.m. (select ROOT Sports outlets)
Missouri at Alabama, 3 p.m. (SEC Network)
Rutgers at Nebraska, 2 p.m. (ESPNU)

Late Afternoon Tips

Purdue at Maryland, 4 p.m. (ESPN)
Florida at Kentucky, 4 p.m. (CBS)
South Carolina at Texas A&M, 4 p.m. (ESPNU)
Arizona at Washington, 4:30 p.m. (FOX)
Stanford at California, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)
Mount St. Mary's at Wagner, 4 p.m. (NEC Front Row)
Clemson at Virginia Tech, 4 p.m. (ACC RSNs/ESPN3)
Furman at Chattanooga, 5 p.m. (SoCon Digital Network)
Butler at St. John's, 4:30 p.m. (select FSN outlets)
New Mexico at San Diego State, 4 p.m. (CBSSN)

Early Evening Tips

North Carolina at Notre Dame, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
Oklahoma at Kansas State, 6 p.m. (ESPNU)
North Florida at Florida Gulf Coast, 7 p.m. (ESPN3)
Auburn at Georgia, 5:30 p.m. (SEC Network)
Mississippi State at LSU, 6 p.m. (ESPN2)
Arizona State at Washington State, 6:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks National, Washington, Arizona)

Mid-Evening Tips

Baylor at West Virginia, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
Colorado at Oregon State, 8:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks National, Rocky Mountain, Oregon)
Stephen F. Austin at Houston Baptist, 8 p.m. (Houston Baptist University)
Vanderbilt at Ole Miss, 8 p.m. (ESPNU)
Indiana at Penn State, 8 p.m. (BTN)
Tennessee at Arkansas, 8 p.m. (SEC Network)
IUPUI at South Dakota State, 8 p.m. (Midco SN/ESPN3)

Late Evening Tips

Georgetown at Seton Hall, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
Gonzaga at Pepperdine, 12 a.m. (ESPN2)
Wichita State at Illinois State, 10 p.m. (ESPN2)
Hawai'i at Cal Poly, 10 p.m. (ESPNU)

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