Sunday, October 3, 2021

CFB TV Guesses for 2021 Week 7 (10/16/21)

Here are the games already set for television and/or webcast. Here are the known available telecast windows. 

I have done my best to list what TV windows are out there. Every listing service has a little different schedule for these networks. It is also possible that a window could be eliminated or the time of a window could shift slightly to accommodate a network's needs.

Some considerations you may want to be aware of

* ESPN Networks has preselected Stanford at Washington State
* FOX Sports has preselected two Mountain West games:
  • Air Force at Boise State
  • Fresno State at Wyoming
* These Big Ten games are locked to their start times as homecoming games:
  • Rutgers at Northwestern (12pm)
  • Michigan State at Indiana (12pm)
  • Purdue at Iowa (3:30pm or 4pm)
* CBS has a doubleheader at 12pm and 3:30pm ET.  When this occurs, 
  • CBS does NOT have the top two selections, but picks 1st at 3:30pm and 4th at 12pm.  ESPN picks in between.
  • The 12pm CBS game is not an exclusive window for them.  ESPN can air a concurrent game.
  • Historically, this has been a place to use a six day hold.
* FOX Sports is tentatively scheduled to carry ALCS Game 2.  Schedules currently have both FOX and FS1 carrying the game at that time, likely for a simulcast of FOX's airing for an alternate presentation on FS1.  Because of listings showing the game on both networks, I have no afternoon game on FS1.
* CBS Sports Network has a MAC selection at 3:30pm ET.
* At the moment, ACC Network isn't carrying a 12pm game, but it also isn't clear what is being shown instead.  Could be just two games on ACCN based on the number of available games.
* BTN has no mid-afternoon window, airing women's volleyball.  The primetime slot on BTN has already been announced as Army West Point at Wisconsin.
* I went with the top Big Ten choice with ESPN and the top Big 12 and Pac-12 choices with FOX Sports.

Some early trends to consider:

Big Ten
* ESPN appears to have had the top Saturday selection just once (9/18, Auburn at Penn State) and I still expect them to go on a run of top selections, especially with FOX using what appears to be their seven top choices.
* Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota and Penn State needs to appear once on BTN against another Big Ten opponent.  In the case of Minnesota, it is once more against a Big Ten school as they did not have any non-conference games on BTN.
* Counting future selections
  • ESPN Networks: 12
    • Five in primetime (including weeknights) with a minimum of six
  • FOX Sports: 17
    • Six in primetime (including weeknights) with a max of nine.
Big 12
* More of an even split in terms of top Saturday choice
  • ESPN Networks: 9/11, 9/25, 10/9
  • FOX Sports: 9/4, 9/18, 10/2
* ESPN Networks has used 14 of their 23 selections.
* At least 18 games have been earmarked for ABC, FOX, ESPN or FS1 out of a minimum of 25 games.

* In terms of Saturday top choice, I think this is the following split, though the Pac-12's use of priority selections where both ESPN and FOX can choose a game in advance of the weekly draft order skews this somewhat. I did have FOX Sports with the 10/9 selection top choice and I think its safe to question whether that was correct with Stanford at Oregon on ABC, so I'm going to move 10/9 over to the ESPN side 
  • ESPN Networks:  9/25, 10/2, 10/9
  • FOX Sports: 9/4, 9/11, 9/18
* ESPN Networks has used 11 of their 22 selections and must air one more game on ABC that is in primetime on the east coast.
* FOX Sports has used 12 of their 22 selections.  Four more games must air on FOX and of those four, one must air in primetime on the east coast.

Now to the guesses.  All times Eastern:

12pm ABC: Michigan State at Indiana
12pm CBS: Auburn at Arkansas
12pm FOX: TCU at Oklahoma
12pm ESPN: Alabama at Mississippi State
12pm ESPN2: NC State at Boston College
12pm FS1: Iowa State at Kansas State
12pm ESPNU: Texas Tech at Kansas
12pm SECN: Vanderbilt at South Carolina
12pm BTN: Rutgers at Northwestern
12:30pm ACC RSN: Duke at Virginia
3:30pm ABC: Purdue at Iowa
3:30pm CBS: Kentucky at Georgia
3:30pm ESPN: UCF at Cincinnati
3:30pm ESPN2: Nebraska at Minnesota
3:30pm CBSSN: Bowling Green at Northern Illinois
3:30pm ESPNU: Kent State at Western Michigan
4pm SECN: Ole Miss at Tennessee
4pm ACCN: Miami (FL) at North Carolina
4pm Pac-12: Arizona at Colorado
4:30pm FS2: Fresno State at Wyoming
7pm ESPN: BYU at Baylor
7pm ESPN2: Texas A&M at Missouri
7pm ESPNU: Liberty at ULM
7:30pm ABC: Oklahoma State at Texas
7:30pm SECN: Florida at LSU
7:30pm ACCN: Pitt at Virginia Tech
8pm FOX: Arizona State at Utah
9pm FS1: Air Force at Boise State
10:30pm ESPN: Stanford at Washington State
10:30pm ESPN2: UCLA at Washington

* I think its realistic to wonder if there will be a six day hold in the Big 12 pending the outcome of Oklahoma-Texas.  If there is, maybe consideration is also given to UCF-Cincinnati and possibly NC State-Boston College as the ABC primetime game.
* Similar situation in the Pac-12 where a six day hold could be used by FOX deciding between Arizona State-Utah and UCLA-Washington.
* With the late windows on ESPN and ESPN2 is at 10:30pm ET, Pac-12 home games cannot be slotted later than 8pm local time (though they did allow a couple last year with no fans in attendance), which means if Arizona State-Utah were to fall here, it would need to be slotted at 10pm ET.
* Why not the Pac-12 in primetime on ABC? Mostly because FOX and ABC try to not have competing games from the Pac-12 in the same TV window.  Also, the two late evening windows left me a bit tied to filling those.
* If Fresno State had beaten Hawai'i, you would have had a very good case to swap the two Mountain West games on FOX Sports.

Tulsa at USF
Akron at Miami (OH)
Ball State at Eastern Michigan
Toledo at Central Michigan
Troy at Texas State


Schmolik said...

Why wouldn't ESPN air a prime time SEC game? If they're going to only air one SEC game, why not just put it in prime time and avoid going head to head with CBS? I wouldn't think ESPN would be allowed to take two picks ahead of CBS only to dump one of them to SECN.

Anonymous said...

Are you saying that Florida-LSU is the #3 SEC selection for ESPN?

Matt Sarzyniak said...

At the moment, yes I am.

Darrell McKown said...

I think you are looking at several 6-day holds:

- SEC between the two CBS time slots, ESPN noon, ESPN 7pm and SECN 7:30pm;
- Big 12 between noon FOX, and ABC/ESPN 3:30pm and 7:30pm (Texas-OSU, OU-TCU and Baylor-BYU); and
- Cincinnati-UCF between ABC/ESPN 3:30pm and 7:30pm,

as well as network hold between ABC/ESPN and ACCN for 7:30pm (BC-NC State and VT-Pitt).

All of which leaves about five possibilities for the ABC Saturday Night Football game.

Matt – do you know if the CBS noon time slot counts towards the five game limit? If it does, then ESPN doesn’t need to bother with selecting Alabama-Mississippi St since there’s really no way CBS and select it given they are at three Alabama games with LSU and Iron Bowl (and Alabama-Arkansas) to come.

Matt Sarzyniak said...

All SEC games on CBS are theirs directly and not sublicensed, so they all count towards appearance maximums

Craig said...

I agree re: 6 day holds, under the condition that Alabama-Mississippi State will not be on CBS. That game they might just place though since ESPN would likely want a strong spot for Alabama.

I can see this for SEC:

* 6 day hold between Kentucky-Georgia, Auburn-Arkansas, Florida-LSU and Ole Miss-Tennessee with options being 3:30 pm on CBS, 12 noon on ESPN, 12 noon on CBS and 6:30 pm on SECN (i.e. spots 1, 3, 4 and 5)
* Alabama-Mississippi State at 6 pm on ESPN (spot 2, no hold)
* Texas A&M-Missouri at 12 noon on SECN (spot 6)
* Vanderbilt-South Carolina at 3 pm on SECN (spot 7)

It also practically guarantees that LSU-Ole Miss will be the CBS game in Week 8 given the Alabama issue and the lack of other quality games.

Schmolik said...

If I'm CBS, I'd take Tennessee-Alabama on Oct. 23 and actually give up LSU-Alabama on Nov. 6 and take Missouri-Georgia since at least you get Georgia, the 2nd best team in the country vs. an LSU team that already lost twice. Florida lost to Kentucky, Texas A&M lost at home to Mississippi State, LSU's loss to UCLA looks bad now that they've lost two straight at home so CBS should max out on Georgia. Nov. 13 at Tennessee is probably the best choice for CBS now considering Alabama is playing New Mexico State. CBS's five potential Georgia games: Oct. 9 at Auburn, Oct. 16 vs. Kentucky, Oct. 30 vs. Florida in Jacksonville, Nov. 6 vs. Missouri, Nov. 13 at Tennessee.