College Football Kickoff 2016 TV Schedule

College Football Playoff National Championship Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The 2016 college football season kicks off on Friday, Aug. 26, with a game Down Under as the Cal Golden Bears and Hawaii Rainbow Warriors play in Sydney, Australia. Here’s a rundown of the best Week 1 college football action, including ESPN’s coverage of what it hails as their best opening weekend schedule ever:

Friday, Aug. 26
Cal vs. Hawaii
ESPN, 10pm ET

The Cal Golden Bears and Hawaii Rainbow Warriors kick off the 2016 college football season at ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Australia.

Thursday, Sept. 1
South Carolina at Vanderbilt
ESPN, 8pm ET

ESPN’s coverage of college football’s opening week features the South Carolina Gamecocks at the Vanderbilt Commodores in a primetime SEC matchup in Nashville, Tenn.

Friday, Sept. 2
ESPN & FS1, beginning at 8pm ET

Week 1 of the college football season continues Friday night with the Colorado State Rams vs. the Colorado Buffaloes in Denver (ESPN, 8pm ET) and the Kansas State Wildcats at the Stanford Cardinal (FS1, 9pm ET).

Saturday, Sept. 3
ABC, CBS, ESPN, ESPN2 & FS1, beginning at 7:30am ET

It’s the first full Saturday of the 2016 college football season, and the schedule is packed with top matchups, including Georgia Tech vs. Boston College in Ireland (ESPN2, 7:30am ET), Oklahoma vs. Houston at NRG Stadium (ABC, 12pm ET), Hawaii at Michigan (ESPN, 12pm ET), UCLA at Texas A&M (CBS, 3:30pm ET), LSU vs. Wisconsin at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. (ABC, 3:30pm ET), Georgia vs. North Carolina at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta (ESPN, 5:30pm ET), USC vs. Alabama at AT&T Stadium in Texas (ABC, 8pm ET), Clemson at Auburn (ESPN, 9pm ET) and Arizona vs. BYU at University of Phoenix Stadium (FS1, 10:30pm ET).

Sunday, Sept. 4
Notre Dame at Texas
ABC, 7:30pm ET

A rare Sunday college football matchup has the Notre Dame Fighting Irish heading down to Austin to face the Texas Longhorns in primetime on ABC.

Monday, Sept. 5
Ole Miss vs. Florida State
ESPN, 8pm ET

A Monday night college football clash on ESPN has the Ole Miss Rebels against the Florida State Seminoles at Camping World Stadium in Orlando.

ESPN’s College Football Schedule

Week 0

Friday, Aug. 26

Time (ET)

Game

Network

10 p.m.

Hawaii vs. Cal from ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Australia

Allen Bestwick, Mike Bellotti and Warren Smith

ESPN

 

Saturday, Aug. 27

Time (ET)

Game

Network

7:30 p.m.

FCS Kickoff: No. 6 Charleston Southern at No. 1 North Dakota State

Adam Amin, Mack Brown, Molly McGrath

ESPN

 

Week 1

Thursday, Sept. 1  

Time (ET)

Game

Network

7 p.m.

Charlotte at Louisville

ACC Network Extra*

Tulane at Wake Forest

ACC Network Extra

Presbyterian at Central Michigan

ESPN3

Tennessee-Martin at Cincinnati

ESPN3

Maine at UConn

ESPN3*

7:30 p.m.

Appalachian State at No. 11 Tennessee

Brent Musburger, Jesse Palmer, Laura Rutledge

SEC Network

Indiana at Florida International

Mike Couzens, Clint Stoerner

ESPNU

William & Mary at NC State

ACC Network Extra

8 p.m.

South Carolina at Vanderbilt

Mark Jones, Rod Gilmore, Quint Kessenich

ESPN

9 p.m.

Montana State at Idaho

ESPN3*

 

Friday, Sept. 2

Time (ET)

Game

Network

6 p.m.

Mississippi Valley State at Eastern Michigan

ESPN3

7 p.m.

Colgate at Syracuse

ACC Network Extra

Albany at Buffalo

ESPN3

Ball State at Georgia State

ESPN3*

8 p.m.

Colorado State vs. Colorado from Sports Authority Field at Mile High in Denver, Colo.

Adam Amin, Mack Brown, Molly McGrath

ESPN

9 p.m.

Toledo at Arkansas State

Roy Philpott, Clint Stoerner

ESPNU

Saturday, Sept. 3

Time (ET)

Game

Network

7:30 a.m.

Georgia Tech vs. Boston College from Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland

Jason Benetti, Kelly Stouffer, Paul Carcaterra

ESPN2

Noon

2016 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff: No. 5 Oklahoma vs. No. 18 Houston from NRG Stadium in Houston

Dave Pasch, Greg McElroy, Tom Luginbill

ABC

Hawaii at No. 3 Michigan

Mike Patrick, Ed Cunningham, Dr. Jerry Punch

ESPN

Western Michigan at Northwestern

Clay Matvick, Dusty Dvoracek

ESPNU

South Alabama at Mississippi State

David Neal, Matt Stinchcomb, Olivia Harlan

SEC Network

Eastern Kentucky at Purdue

Dave Lamont, Ray Bentley

ESPNEWS

Boise State at Louisiana-Lafayette

ESPN3*

12:30 p.m.

Liberty at Virginia Tech

ACC Network Extra*

1:30 p.m.

Villanova at Pittsburgh

ACC Network Extra

3:30 p.m.

No. 6 LSU vs. Wisconsin from Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis.

Steve Levy, Brian Griese, Todd McShay

ABC

Miami (Ohio) at No. 23 Iowa

Eamon McAnaney, John Congemi

ESPNU

Richmond at Virginia

ACC Network Extra

4 p.m.

Louisiana Tech at Arkansas

Beth Mowins, Anthony Becht, Rocky Boiman

SEC Network

5:30 p.m.

2016 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game: No. 13 Georgia vs. No. 19 North Carolina from Georgia Dome in Atlanta

TV: Bob Wischusen, Brock Huard, Allison Williams

Radio: Marc Kestcher, Tom Ramsey

ESPN and ESPN Radio

6 p.m.

North Carolina Central at Duke

ACC Network Extra

Florida A&M at Miami (Fla.)

ACC Network Extra

Western Carolina at East Carolina

ESPN3

6:30 p.m.

VMI at Akron

ESPN3

7 p.m.

Southeast Missouri State at Memphis

ESPN3

South Carolina State at UCF

ESPN3

Towson at South Florida

ESPN3

Rhode Island at Kansas

ESPN3*

Oklahoma Panhandle State at Sam Houston State

ESPN3

7:30 p.m.

Southern Mississippi at Kentucky

Anish Shroff, Ahmad Brooks

ESPNU

UMass at Florida

Tom Hart, Andre Ware, Cole Cubelic

SEC Network

8 p.m.

No. 12 USC vs. No. 1 Alabama from AT&T Stadium  in Arlington, Texas

TV: Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Samantha Ponder

Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie, and Ian Fitzsimmons

ABC and ESPN Radio

Coastal Carolina at Lamar

ESPN3*

9 p.m.

No. 2 Clemson at Auburn

Brent Musburger, Jesse Palmer, Kaylee Hartung

ESPN

 

Sunday, Sept. 4

Time

Game

Network

1 p.m.

2016 MEAC/SWAC Challenge: Alcorn State vs. Bethune-Cookman

Eric Clemons, Jay Walker

ESPN

6 p.m.

Texas Southern vs. Prairie View A&M

Mark Neely, Forrest Conoly

ESPNU

7:30 p.m.

No. 9 Notre Dame at Texas

Joe Tessitore, Todd Blackledge, Holly Rowe

ABC

 

Monday, Sept. 5

Time

Game

Network

8 p.m.

2016 Camping World Kickoff: No. 14 Ole Miss vs. No. 4 Florida State from Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Fla.

TV: Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Samantha PonderRadio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie, Ian Fitzsimmons

ESPN and ESPN Radio

*Not exclusive

Please note: ESPN.com’s “way too early top 25” rankings were used for this release. ESPN will utilize AP Rankings once they come out on August 21 for the start of the season. FCS Rankings were only utilized for the FCS Kickoff and are per the FCS Coaches’ Poll (Aug. 8). 

Schedule and commentators subject to change

ESPN’s Best College Football Opening Weekend Schedule Ever from ESPNFrontRow on Vimeo.

About Ryan Berenz 2012 Articles
Devotee of Star Wars. Builder of LEGO. Observer of televised sports. Member of the Television Critics Association. Graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Connoisseur of beer. Consumer of cheese. Father of two. Husband of one. Scourge of the Alaskan Bush People. Font of Simpsons knowledge. Son of a Stonecutter.