“Statement Saturday” in the Spotlight for Week 9 as 15 Ranked CFB Squads Slated for ESPN Platforms

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“Statement Saturday” in the Spotlight for Week 9 as 15 Ranked CFB Squads Slated for ESPN Platforms

  • Key matchups: No. 20 Penn State at No. 5 Ohio State, No. 10 Ole Miss at No. 18 Auburn, No. 9 Iowa at Wisconsin, Texas at No. 16 Baylor, Miami at No. 17 Pittsburgh, No. 2 Cincinnati at Tulane, Texas Tech at No. 4 Oklahoma

With the unveiling of the first College Football Playoff rankings on the horizon, Week 9 provides an opportunity for every team to make a statement ahead of the first set of rankings. ESPN networks will highlight 15 of the AP Top 25 ranked squads in Week 9, with nearly 40 games slated for ESPN platforms and every game available on the ESPN App.

ABC’s Saturday Night Football Presented by Capital One features the fifth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes hosting No. 20 Penn State, with Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit and Holly Rowe on the call. The Nittany Lions-Buckeyes matchup will be supplemented by the AT&T 5G SkyCast on ESPN3 and the ESPN App.

Rounding out the ABC action on Statement Saturday is a duo of ranked teams at home. No. 4 Oklahoma welcomes Texas Tech at 3:30 p.m. on ABC, with Dave Pasch, Dusty Dvoracek and Tom Luginbill announcing the action. Set for ABC at noon is No. 16 Baylor hosting Lone Star State rival Texas, with Joe Tessitore, Greg McElroy and Katie George commentating from Waco.

In primetime on ESPN, No. 18 Auburn matches up with No. 10 Ole Miss at 7 p.m. The game, featuring Sean McDonough, Todd Blackledge and Molly McGrath providing commentary, will be supplemented by the SkyCast viewing option and the Great Clips Command Center on ESPN3 and the ESPN App.

Kicking off the day on ESPN is ninth-ranked Iowa clashing at Camp Randall Stadium with the Wisconsin Badgers. The matchup is set for noon on ESPN and ESPN Radio, with Bob Wischusen, Dan Orlovsky and Kris Budden on ESPN and Sean Kelley, Barrett Jones and Ian Fitzsimmons on the ESPN Radio call from Madison. This week’s 4K Game of the Week is Florida State at Clemson, featuring Mark Jones, Robert Griffin III and Quint Kessenich calling the action at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN.

A trio of ranked teams are set for ESPN2 Saturday, as No. 2 Cincinnati kicks off at noon on the road against Tulane, with Anish Shroff, Mike Golic Jr. and Taylor McGregor on the call. At 7 p.m., No. 19 SMU takes on in-state rival Houston with Taylor Zarzour, Matt Stinchcomb and Alyssa Lang announcing the action. At 10:15 p.m., No. 25 BYU plays host to Virginia, with Beth Mowins, Kirk Morrison and Dawn Davenport providing commentary.

A duo of ranked ACC squads are slated for ACC Network action on Statement Saturday, including No. 13 Wake Forest and No. 17 Pittsburgh. The Demon Deacons and Duke match up at 4 p.m. on ACCN, with Wes Durham, Roddy Jones and Taylor Davis on the call from Winston-Salem. At noon, the 17th-ranked Panthers host Miami, featuring Chris Cotter, Mark Herzlich and Jalyn Johnson calling the action.

In primetime on SEC Network, No. 12 Kentucky sets off for Starkville for an SEC Saturday Night showdown against Mississippi State. Tom Hart, Jordan Rodgers and Cole Cubelic will announce the action at 7 p.m.

A Big 12 battle looms on Saturday as West Virginia welcomes No. 22 Iowa State at 2 p.m. on Big 12 Now on ESPN+. Courtney Lyle, Brandon Weeden and Shane Sparks are on the call as the Cyclones return to the Big 12 title chase.

Kicking off ranked action in Week 9 is No. 24 Coastal Carolina, as the Chanticleers host Troy on ESPN2. Clay Matvick, Rocky Boiman and Tiffany Blackmon will be on the call, set for 7:30 p.m.

College Football Original Series on ESPN+

  • Why Not Us: FAMU Football presented by Cricket Wireless – “Primetime,” the second episode of the second season of Why Not Us, is available to stream now. Coach Simmons and the Rattlers head to Miami to face the Deion Sanders-led Jackson State Tigers in a nationally televised game, as they renew the HBCU tradition of the Orange Blossom Classic. The conference matchup could decide who has the advantage to reach the SWAC Championship Game later in the year.
  • Eli’s Places – Episode 8: “Hidden History” is available to stream now, where Eli Manning meets up with HBCU alums Jerry Rice, Ed “Too Tall” Jones and Eddie George to explore the outstanding tradition of football at some of the country’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities. New episodes debut Wednesdays.
  • Our Time: UCF Football – Available to stream now on ESPN+, Episode 6: “Kicked to the Curb” looks at the halfway point of the Knights’ season, with some players looking to their faith and others looking to rehab to get back on the field. New episodes debut every Thursday throughout the season.

Additional ESPN Networks – Week 9 Highlights

  • Alabama A&M vs. Alabama State (Birmingham, Ala.): Saturday at 10:30 p.m., ESPNU (tape-delayed; live at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN3)
    • Talent: Tiffany Greene, Jay Walker

Additional college football updates will be forthcoming, and the schedule is subject to change. Please continue to check @ESPNPR and ESPN Press Room for more information.

The full schedule and on-air talent grid can be found here.

Amanda Brooks

Amanda is the Communications Manager for ESPN College Football and SEC Network, and oversees publicity for college gymnastics and track & field across all ESPN networks. Amanda is a proud alum of Hendrix College in Conway, Ark., and earned her master's in ethics from Vanderbilt University. A native of Kent, Ohio, she is a die-hard Cleveland Indians fan.
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