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A feast of television on long holiday weekend

There are many things to be thankful for this season, and this is one more to add to your list: our annual holiday guide to sports on television during this long weekend. Instead of wearing out your remote control trying to find the best games, just refer to the chart below. It's not all the sports on television the next five days, but these are the games people will be talking about Monday. You're welcome.

Today

NHL: Maple Leafs at Lightning, 7 p.m., Sun Sports — Get into the holiday spirit with some ice hockey. The Lightning is much improved, while the Leafs are playing like a bunch of hosers.

College basketball: NIT Season Tip-Off semifinal, LSU vs. Connecticut, 7 p.m., ESPN2 — Get the holiday weekend off to a good start with some college hoops from Madison Square Garden.

NBA: Heat at Magic, 7:30 p.m., ESPN, FSN — Intrastate rivalry, and they are both off to a good start.

College basketball: NIT Season Tip-Off semifinal, Arizona State vs. Duke, 9 p.m., ESPN2 — Looks like a blowout, right? Not so fast. ASU is 4-0 and could take down the mighty Blue Devils.

College basketball: Maui Invitational final, 10 p.m., ESPN — Not only a tournament that attracts good teams, but it's fun watching coaches try to be serious with leis around their necks.

Thursday

NFL: Packers at Lions, 12:30 p.m., Ch. 13 — A Thanksgiving tradition. Plus, it's a good game to have on in the background while your Aunt Nancy talks about the new mall that opened near her house in Raleigh.

NFL: Raiders at Cowboys, 4 p.m., Ch. 10 — Former Buc Bruce Gradkowski is the starting quarterback for Oakland. Seriously.

College football: Texas at Texas A&M, 8 p.m., ESPN — This is like a bowl game for the Aggies, who would love nothing more than to ruin the Longhorns' national title hopes.

NFL: Giants at Broncos, 8:20 p.m., NFL Network — Not the hottest teams in the NFL, but it could be a good game. And don't call us if you don't get the NFL Network. We have nothing to do with it.

College basketball: Florida State vs. Iona, 9 p.m., ESPNU — This is part of an all-day tournament in Orlando with games starting at noon on the ESPN networks.

Friday

College football: Illinois at Cincinnati, noon, Ch. 28 — Spoiler alert. The Bearcats are hoping for a perfect season, and Illinois could stand in their way.

College football: Alabama at Auburn, 2:30 p.m., Ch. 10 — The Tide should roll, but you never know in this rivalry.

College football: Nebraska at Colorado, 3:30 p.m., Ch. 28 — Believe it or not, the Cornhuskers won the Big 12's north division and face Texas in the conference championship game.

College football: Pittsburgh at West Virginia, 7 p.m., ESPN2 — The backyard brawl means a lot to Pitt, for a change. This year, West Virginia looks for the upset.

NBA: Wizards at Heat, 7 p.m., ESPN — First of a Friday night doubleheader.

NHL: Rangers at Lightning, 7:30 p.m., Sun Sports — John Tortorella returns to the St. Pete Times Forum for the first time since being fired, so shut your yap!

College football: Nevada at Boise State, 10 p.m., ESPN2 — The Broncos have won about a thousand straight games on their field, but Nevada could be a threat.

Saturday

College football: Clemson at South Carolina, noon, ESPN — Clemson still has the ACC title game to worry about, but the Tigers would love to beat the Gamecocks.

College football: Florida State at Florida, 3:30 p.m., Ch. 10 — Let's see, Tim Tebow's last home game with a national championship on the line. Hmmm, don't like the Seminoles' chances.

College football: Miami at USF, 3:30 p.m., Ch. 28 — A win would not only salvage the Bulls' season but give them huge state bragging rights.

College football: Arkansas at LSU, 7 p.m., ESPN — This game looked better at the beginning of the season, but if you must have your SEC fix, here it is.

College football: Notre Dame at Stanford, 8 p.m., Ch. 28 — If the rumors are true, the Charlie Weis era comes to a close at Notre Dame.

NHL: Lightning at Stars, 8:30 p.m., Ch. 44 — Second game in as many nights for the Lightning.

NBA: Magic at Bucks, 9 p.m., FSN — Mix it up with a little pro hoops.

College football: UCLA at USC, 10 p.m., Sun Sports — This game used to mean something … when it was John Robinson vs. Terry Donahue.

Sunday

NFL: Bucs at Falcons, 1 p.m., Ch. 13 — The only reason to watch now is to see Josh Freeman progress. Or regress.

NFL: Jaguars at 49ers, 4 p.m., Ch. 10 — The Jaguars have no chance of catching the Colts, but at 6-4 they still have plenty to play for.

NFL: Bears at Vikings, 4:15 p.m., Ch. 13 — He may be 56 years old, but Brett Favre is still fun to watch.

College basketball: Old Spice Classic championship, 7:30 p.m., ESPN2 — This is the championship game of the weeklong tournament in Orlando.

NFL: Steelers at Ravens, 8:15 p.m., Ch. 8 — The Steelers are reeling and just trying to stay relevant, and the Ravens are trying to catch up in the AFC North.

College basketball: Anaheim Basketball Tournament final, 10 p.m., ESPN2 — Cap your weekend with one more college basketball tournament.

A feast of television on long holiday weekend 11/24/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 24, 2009 11:46pm]

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