Back by popular demand, here's how to schedule your Saturday. (All times EST.)
Before Noon: L.A. Confidential (Encore4, 9:50 am to 12:20 pm)
What's not to love about this noir masterpiece? Director Curtis Hanson's take on the James Ellroy novel features great performances from Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, James Cromwell, Danny Devito and Oscar winner Kim Basinger. Look for an early turn by The Mentalist as a young male prostitute who falls victim to the machinations of 1940s Los Angeles. This film never got the appreciation it deserved as one of the best flicks of the '90s.
-Alternative: Fools Rush In (TBS, 9:10 am to 11:25 am)
A New York WASP and a feisty Latina wed when a one-night fling leaves her pregnant in this winning romantic comedy starring Salma Hayek and Chandler Bing.
12 pm to 3:30 pm: Ohio State at Northwestern (ESPN)
There's a surprisingly strong slate of early games this week. Homerism speculated that Northwestern could win nine regular season games this year, and the Wildcats are closing in on that mark. I counted this one as a certain "L" in the preseason. I'd love to tell the NU-bies I was wrong back in August, but it would be cruel to get their hopes up.
-Alternative: Georgia Tech at North Carolina (Raycom/ESPN-GP)
ACC teams have struggled preparing for the Yellow Jackets' option attack under new coach Paul Johnson. That element of the unknown has helped put the Ramblin' Wreck in the thick of the conference race. UNC has had a couple weeks to prepare, so let's see what kind of defense Butch Davis has cooked up.
3:30 pm to 7 pm: Oklahoma at Texas A&M (ABC/ESPN-GP)
This one could be closer than the experts think. OU has struggled under Bob Stoops down in College Station. In 2002, the top-ranked Sooners fell to a pretty unimpressive Aggie squad, for example. Of course, even though this A&M team is improving under quarterback Jerrod Johnson, this is a lost season for Mike Sherman's team. This could be another 50ish-30ish game.
-Alternative: Alabama at LSU (CBS)
The dynamics at play in this game are fascinating. Do the Tiger players actually hate an opposing coach who probably wasn't on their radar when they picked LSU? Is LSU better off with Les Miles, as Nick Saban himself has implied? (No.) Have the Tiger fans lost their aim with lit cigars?
7 pm to 8 pm: Cincinnati at West Virginia (ESPNU)
West Virginia has rounded into the form we all expected at the beginning of the year. The Bearcats, however, have played through adversity this season and come out looking pretty strong. It's a testament to Brian Kelly's coaching ability, and don't be surprised when he bolts for greener pastures in the offseason.
-Alternative: Kansas State at Missouri (FSN)
There's not much reason to check in here unless you love watching the always-bizarre relationship between a lame duck and some players who have played uninspired all season. This one should produce plenty of purple carnage.
8 pm to 11:30 pm: Oklahoma State at Texas Tech (ABC/ESPN-GP)
An evening in Lubbock won't be as foreign to the Cowboys as it likely was for the Longhorns, who are used to the cosmopolitan comforts of 6th Street. Can the Red Raiders' defense maintain the fire that helped stymie Texas' offense? Oklahoma State's balanced attack arguably presents a tougher test.
-Alternative: Notre Dame at Boston College (ESPN)
BC has owned the Irish lately, but Homerism confesses to having ignored the Eagles all season. Seriously, what is there to get excited about with this program? BC has a great coach, yet a college season at Chestnut Hill is about as interesting to Homerism as a Project Runway episode. If this ND team has any heart, the Irish will win this game. How much more embarrassment can you take at the hands of "Fredo?"