Defensive end Aidan Hutchinson and the No. 2 Michigan Wolverines battle the No. 13 Iowa Hawkeyes in the Big Ten Championship game at 8 p.m. EST Saturday on Fox. File Photo by Aaron Josefczyk/UPI | License Photo
MIAMI, Dec. 3 (UPI) — College football conference championship games, the MLS Cup Playoffs and a PGA Tour golf tournament highlight the weekend sports schedule. The NFL, NBA, NHL and college basketball regular seasons also continue.
College football’s regular season is over and postseason bowls start later this month. But first, many of the top teams in the country need to play in conference title games to determine their postseason fate.
The final College Football Playoff rankings will be released Tuesday. They determine which four teams get a chance to compete in the semifinals and national title game.
Two conference title games air Friday and launch the college football weekend schedule. Western Kentucky battles UTSA in the Conference USA Championship game at 7 p.m. EST on CBSSN. No. 10 Oregon faces No. 17 Utah in the Pac-12 Championship game at 8 p.m. on ABC.
Saturday’s slate features nine Football Bowl Subdivision title games.
No. 5 Oklahoma battles No. 9 Baylor for the Big 12 title in one of two noon games Saturday on ABC. Oklahoma could slip into the Top 4 of the College Football Playoff rankings with a victory.
Kent State takes on Northern Illinois in the MAC Championship game at the same time on ESPN.
Saturday’s slate continues with the Mountain West Championship game. No. 19 San Diego State battles Utah State in that matchup at 3 p.m. on Fox.
No. 24 Louisiana hosts Appalachian State for the Sun Belt title at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN.
No. 1 Georgia faces No. 3 Alabama for the SEC Championship in another game with big-time College Football Playoff implications. That game airs at 4 p.m. on CBS.
No. 4 Cincinnati hosts No. 21 Houston in the AAC Championship game at 4 p.m. on ABC.
Jackson State hosts Prairie View A&M for the SWAC title at 4 p.m. on ESPN2. No. 15 Pittsburgh faces No. 16 Wake Forest in the ACC Championship game at 8 p.m. on ABC.
No. 2 Michigan faces No. 13 Iowa in the Big Ten Championship game at 8 p.m. on Fox.
The MLS Cup Playoffs started with 14 teams, but is down to a field of four. The 2021 Western Conference Final and Eastern Conference Final air Saturday and Sunday, respectively.
The fourth-seeded Portland Timbers host No. 7 Real Salt Lake at 6:30 p.m. EST Saturday on FS1. The No. 2 Philadelphia Union hosts No. 4 NYCFC at 3 p.m. Sunday on ABC.
The winners from those games advance to the 2021 MLS Cup title game at 3 p.m. Dec. 11. The championship airs on ABC.
Additional games from England’s Premier League, Spain’s La Liga, Italy’s Serie A, Germany’s Bundesliga and France’s Ligue 1 also air this weekend.
Chelsea faces West Ham in the Premier League at 7:30 a.m. Saturday on NBC Sports. Liverpool follows with a game against Wolves at 10 a.m. on USA.
Manchester City takes on Premier League foe Watford at 12:30 p.m. Saturday on NBC. Star striker Erling Haaland and Borussia Dortmund face Bundesliga power Bayern Munich at the same time on ESPN+.
Lionel Messi and Paris Saint-Germain battle Lens in Ligue 1 play at 3 p.m. Saturday on beIN Sports.
Manchester United hosts Crystal Palace in another Premier League game at 9 a.m. Sunday on NBC Sports. Tottenham Hotspur hosts Norwich City at the same time on Peacock Premium.
Elite golfers returned from a Thanksgiving break to tee off at the 2021 Hero World Challenge on Thursday in Nassau on the island of New Providence in the Bahamas. The PGA Tour event runs through Sunday and airs on Golf Channel and NBC.
The 2020 Hero World Challenge was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. The 20-man field for the 2021 Tiger Woods-hosted event features 19 players ranked inside the Top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking.
No. 8 Rory McIlroy is the favorite to win the event at Albany Golf Club. No. 2 Collin Morikawa, No. 6 Justin Thomas, No. 9 Viktor Hovland, No. 4 Xander Schauffele, No. 7 Bryson DeChambeau and No. 11 Jordan Spieth are among the other players expected to contend for the title.
No. 5 Patrick Cantlay, No. 12 Abraham Ancer, No. 13 Tony Finau, No. 16 Brooks Koepka and No. 182 Henrik Stenson, the defending champion, also are in the field.
No. 1 Jon Rahm and No. 3 Dustin Johnson are not in the field.
Weekend schedule (all times EST)
Hero World Challenge: Second round from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Golf Channel
Western Kentucky at UTSA at 7 p.m. on CBSSN
Oregon vs. Utah at 8 p.m. on ABC
Golden Knights at Coyotes at 9:30 p.m. on ESPN+
UT Rio Grande Valley at Texas at 7 p.m. on Longhorn Network
Kansas at St. John’s at 7 p.m. on fS1
Rutgers at Illinois at 7 p.m. on ESPN2
Bryant at Houston at 8 p.m. on ESPN+
Iowa at Purdue at 9 p.m. on Big Ten Network
Kansas State at South Carolina at 7 p.m. on SEC Network
76ers at Hawks at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN
Suns at Warriors at 10 p.m. on ESPN
Premier League: Chelsea at West Ham at 7:30 a.m. on NBC Sports
Serie A: Salernitana at AC Milan at 9 a.m. on beIN Sports
Premier League: Liverpool at Wolves at 10 a.m. on USA
La Liga: Real Betis at Barcelona at 10:15 a.m. on ESPN+
La Liga: Mallorca at Atletico Madrid at 12:30 p.m. on ESPN+
Premier League: Manchester City at Watford at 12:30 p.m. on NBC
Bundesliga: Bayern Munich at Borussia Dortmund at 12:30 p.m. on ESPN+
Serie A: Atalanta at Napoli at 2:45 p.m. on beIN Sports
Ligue 1: Paris Saint-Germain at Lens at 3 p.m. on beIN Sports
La Liga: Real Madrid at Real Sociedad at 3 p.m. on ESPN+
MLS Cup Playoffs: Salt Lake at Portland at 6:30 p.m. on FS1
Baylor vs. Oklahoma State at noon on ABC
Kent State vs. Northern Illinois at noon on ESPN
Utah State vs. San Diego State at 3 p.m. on Fox
Appalachian State at Louisiana at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN
Georgia vs. Alabama at 4 p.m. on CBS
Houston at Cincinnati at 4 p.m. on ABC
Prairie View A&M at Jackson State at 4 p.m. on ESPN2
Pittsburgh vs. Wake Forest at 8 p.m. on ABC
Michigan vs. Iowa at 8 p.m. on Fox
USC at Cal at 11 p.m. on FS1
Saint Joseph’s at Villanova at noon on FS1
Memphis at Ole Miss at noon on ESPN2
Nyack College at Seton Hall at noon on FS2
Marquette at Wisconsin at 12:30 p.m. on Fox
San Diego State at Michigan at 1 p.m. on CBS
Tennessee at Colorado at 2 p.m. on FS1
Yale at Auburn at 2 p.m. on ESPNU
Louisville at NC State at 2 p.m. on ESPN2
Little Rock at Arkansas at 4 p.m. on SEC Network
BYU at Missouri State at 4 p.m. on CBSSN
Grambling at UConn at 4 p.m. on FS2
Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Baylor at 5 p.m. on Big 12 Network/ESPN+
Toledo at Michigan State at 5 p.m. on Big Ten Network
USC at Washington State at 6 p.m. on Pac 12 Network
Alabama vs. Georgia at 8 p.m. on ESPN2
Iowa State at Creighton at 9 p.m. on FS1
Blues at Panthers at 1 p.m. on NHL Network
Canadiens at Predators at 7 p.m. on NHL Network
Hero World Challenge: Third round from 2:30 to 5 p.m. on NBC
Premier League: Crystal Palace at Manchester United at 9 a.m. on NBC Sports
Premier League: Norwich City at Tottenham Hotspur at 9 a.m. on Peacock Premium
MLS Cup Playoffs: NYCFC at Philadelphia at 3 p.m. on ABC
Giants at Dolphins at 1 p.m. on Fox
Colts at Texans at 1 p.m. on CBS
Vikings at Lions at 1 p.m. on CBS
Eagles at Jets at 1 p.m. on CBS
Cardinals at Bears at 1 p.m. on Fox
Chargers at Bengals at 1 p.m. on CBS
Buccaneers at Falcons at 1 p.m. on Fox
Jaguars at Rams at 4:05 p.m. on Fox
Washington at Raiders at 4:05 p.m. on Fox
Ravens at Steelers at 4:25 p.m. on CBS
49ers at Seahawks at 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Broncos at Chiefs at 8:20 p.m. on NBC
Hero World Challenge: Final round from 1 to 4 p.m. on NBC
North Carolina at Georgia Tech at 3 p.m. on ESPN2
Arizona at Oregon State at 4 p.m. on ESPNU
Xavier at Oklahoma State at 5 p.m. on ESPN2
California at Utah at 5 p.m. on Pac-12 Network
Notre Dame at UConn at noon on FS1
Belmont at Louisville at noon on ACC Network
Georgia Tech at Georgia at noon on SEC Network
Elon at NC State at 2 p.m. on ACC Network
Tennessee at Virginia Tech at 2 p.m. on ACC Network
Merrimack at Kentucky at 2 p.m. on SEC Network
Texas at Texas A&M at 4 p.m. on SEC Network