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Your College Basketball Saturday Viewing Guide: January 2, 2021

Welcome to 2021, where we highlight a [checks notes] Rutgers game.

Maryland v Rutgers
Is there anything more appropriate than the Rutgers mascot in a “Come at me, bro” pose?
Photo by G Fiume/Maryland Terrapins/Getty Images

Hello and welcome to the first big college basketball Saturday for the 2020-21 season!

Thanks to a delayed and prolonged start to the college football season, we went a couple extra weeks without a lot of college basketball on television on Saturdays this season. But the College Football Playoff semifinals were yesterday, and sure, there’s a handful of bowl games scattered around today for whatever reason. We’re still getting 29 nationally televised college basketball games today, and that doesn’t even count the Big 12 tucking a few games behind the ESPN+ paywall as well as the usual gigantic total of games that are available only via streaming.

The best game of the day, streaming or not, is one that’s on right away today, as #8 Texas visits #3 Kansas. There’s only three games with a top 10 team in action on national television, and this one has two of them. There’s only four games on national television today between two ranked opponents, and this is one of them. You can see why it’s a big deal.

The second best game of the day on national television is, believe it or not, #14 Rutgers hosting #10 Iowa. Yes, you read that right, a top 15 Rutgers team. As you can tell from the rankings, there’s big time Big Ten implications in this one with both teams standing behind undefeated Michigan and amongst a pile of six teams with one loss in league play already.

We’ve got four games elsewhere on the docket that involve a ranked team going on the road against an unranked conference opponent. Sure, we can debate the value of home and road teams in a pandemic-related situation where there are no home fans involved, or at the very least very few home fans involved. Still, playing in someone else’s barn and staying in a hotel and just making the effort to travel to somewhere else to play a basketball game can be enough to potentially throw a team off, so there’s always the chance of a notable upset in those four games.

Here’s the full national television schedule for the day, or at least what it looked like on Thursday morning when I put this together. Things may change because reasons between now and then.

As always, if you see something particularly awesome happening in a game on a locally available channel or via streaming, holler it out in the comments so everyone gets a chance to go check it out.

College Basketball Viewing Guide: 1/2/21

Time (CT) Game Television
Time (CT) Game Television
11:00 AM #8 Texas at #3 Kansas ESPN2
#11 Creighton at Providence Fox
#12 Missouri at Arkansas CBS
DePaul at St. John's FS1
Memphis at Temple ESPNU
11:30 AM Duquesne at George Washington NBC Sports Network
1:00 PM #10 Iowa at #14 Rutgers ESPN2
Notre Dame at Pittsburgh ACC Network
LSU at Florida CBS
TCU at Kansas State ESPNU
1:30 PM Davidson at VCU NBC Sports Network
2:00 PM Ohio at Ball State CBS Sports Network
2:30 PM Florida A&M at South Carolina SEC Network
3:00 PM #9 West Virginia at Oklahoma ESPN2
#24 Virginia Tech at #23 Virginia ACC Network
Colorado State at San Diego State CBS
3:30 PM Butler at Seton Hall FS1
George Mason at Dayton NBC Sports Network
4:00 PM St. Bonaventure at Richmond CBS Sports Network
5:00 PM Alabama at #7 Tennessee ESPN2
Purdue at #15 Illinois Big Ten Network
Kentucky at Mississippi State SEC Network
Wichita State at Ole Miss ESPNU
5:30 PM UMass at Saint Louis NBC Sports Network
6:30 PM Marquette at Georgetown CBS Sports Network
7:00 PM #17 Michigan State at Nebraska Big Ten Network
#20 Duke at #18 Florida State ESPN2
7:30 PM Auburn at Texas A&M SEC Network
9:00 PM Nevada at New Mexico CBS Sports Network