Thanksgiving in the United States is a holiday that many may look past or not value as highly as some of others. Halloween kicks off the fall with drastic changes in culture, celebrating spooky, and giving out candy to eager girls and boys. Afterward, there’s a sect of our country that immediately goes toward Christmas and the winter holidays, skipping what is a truly unique holiday celebrating the end of harvest season.
I’m not here to bore you with why Thanksgiving is underappreciated, but you need to be aware of something special this year. This is likely the best sports weekend we will have in some time, including… ever! We’ve got the breakdown for you, so make sure you get your schedules adjusted and find a TV at your in-laws! You don’t want to miss a potentially monumental occasion! Day-by-day breakdown incoming!
The Best Sports Weekend. Ever.
For all you sports fanatics that don’t mind missing the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, boy do we have a day for you. This is arguably the greatest sports day in history and here’s why:
Four World Cup games.
Three NFL Games.
A nightcap of ranked college basketball teams.
What more would you want? From 5:00 A.M. until 10:30 P.M., there will be games starting within two to three hours of one another for your nonstop viewing pleasure. So, while you’re filling up on turkey or dressing, there’s a lot going on!
All times are Eastern Standard Time.
FIFA World Cup: Portugal v Ghana, 11:00 A.M.
Maybe you’re not the biggest fan of soccer, but may I interest you in a once-every-four-year tournament going on likely before your planned events of the day? There are four total on the day, this one being number three on the slate. If that isn’t enough for you, then understand this: it is likely the last time we will see Christiano Ronaldo, soccer’s most polarizing international star, play in a World Cup.
Like him or not, he has proven over the course of his adult life (and late youth for that matter) that he is a prodigy for the sport and is an athletic icon. He gets a favorable matchup against a Ghana team with only an 11% chance to win according to Google analytics. Could we catch lightning in a bottle and see him get a World Cup goal? Show some support for worldwide athletes and tune in for soccer’s greatest star.
NFL: Buffalo Bills vs Detroit Lions 12:30 P.M.
For your first NFL game of the day, we get a better-than-expected matchup between the preseason Super Bowl favorite Buffalo Bills against the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving at home!
The Lions come into this game on a three-game winning streak and have an opportunity to show that they can indeed hang with the big boys of the NFL. On the opposite side of things, the Bills come in this game just 2-2 since their big win over current AFC favorite Kansas City Chiefs.
Buffalo is the heavy favorite here, but it is a national TV game on a holiday weekend, so anything is possible. The Lions have been feisty all year and the Bills have been heavily scrutinized over the past few weeks, so there is an opportunity for the Lions to really capitalize on momentum here. Either way, tune in to the current fourth-place MVP betting favorite Josh Allen as he takes on a sub.500 team in a dome.
FIFA World Cup: Brazil v Serbia 2:00 P.M.
Maybe the star power isn’t in one single player of this game, but the Brazilian side of this matchup is loaded with talent young and old that even the casual soccer fan has to know.
We start with Neymar, a polarizing player in his own right and arguably the team’s most notable player. The PSG product has had a pretty good start to the 2022-23 season in Ligue 1 in France with 11 goals and nine assists in just 14 matches played.
After him, this team is loaded with Premiere League talent and other worldwide stars such as Thiago Silva, Marquinhos, Casemiro, and Gabriel Jesus. Brazil is a 65% favorite to win according to Google Analytics.
NFL: New York Giants vs Dallas Cowboys 4:30 P.M.
We can’t wait to see the @dallascowboys Thanksgiving throwbacks on Thursday 🔥🤩
📺: FOX 11/24 4:30pm ET pic.twitter.com/OD06mfop94
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) November 23, 2022
Almost as much of a tradition to Thanksgiving as turkey, Dallas Cowboys football is a popular cultural staple of this holiday. From the days of Aikman and Irvin to Romo and Owens, the Cowboys are no stranger to the lights of this stage, but they face a division rival in the Giants that have far exceeded expectations in the first year of head coach Brian Daboll.
The two teams are both 7-3, battling to keep pace with the surging Philadelphia Eagles in what has been the NFL’s toughest division this year. Both teams look to be firmly in the playoffs as of this writing, so this could even be a potential playoff game in the future. Enjoy that after-turkey nap with this bad boy on the TV and thank us later! An NFL division rivalry game with no obligations but to eat and give thanks? Can’t beat that!
NFL: New England Patriots vs Minnesota Vikings 8:20 P.M.
The third of the three NFL games features a team originating near Boston (a colonial town) taking on a Vikings team coming off the most embarrassing NFL loss of the year last week.
While the Patriots may not be as noteworthy since the departure of long-time signal-caller Tom Brady, they are a team that still scares opposing coaches because of the NFL’s greatest coach, Bill Belichick. Belichick is known for being able to take away the opposing team’s greatest weapon, forcing the team to win. The issue here? Who does he try to take away?
Will it be the NFL’s second-leading receiver in Justin Jefferson, or will he key in on the NFL’s number five rushing running back, Dalvin Cook? Either way, tune it to Primetime Kirk Cousins and make sure you watch what will ultimately be a war of attrition between these two teams.
NCAAB: 18 Alabama vs 12 Michigan State 10:30 P.M.
So maybe you’re more into basketball than other sports. Don’t worry, we have something for you too! Your nightcap is a ranked college basketball game featuring two top 20 teams!
On one side, you have familiarity with head coach Tom Izzo who has played arguably the toughest early-season basketball schedule in the country and sits 3-1 after four games. They’ve already defeated Villanova and the then #4 ranked Kentucky and their lone loss was a one-point heartbreaker to the then-ranked #2 Gonzaga Bulldogs. More of the same from Izzo who has once again proven that his teams can compete with anyone while he is coaching.
Meanwhile, Alabama will be facing its first real test of the season here. If you’re still wired from napping earlier, this will be a great way to wind down after a long holiday.
So maybe you aren’t the type to go out and fight the crowds of Black Friday (and we don’t blame you one bit). There’s still plenty to watch on your TV today. You have another World Cup slate featuring arguably the biggest USA soccer game in the last 10-15 years, some college football ranked and rivalry games, and even a little NBA action! Buckle up, this one is a doozy.
FIFA World Cup: Netherlands v Ecuador 11:00 A.M.
The third of four World Cup games gives us our first matchup of undefeated teams in the tournament. The Netherlands beat Senegal 2-0 in their first match of the World Cup. The soccer powerhouse now turns its attention to an Ecuador team who won their opening match 2-0 against host Qatar, being the first team to defeat a host country in their opening game, a record that stood for 92 years.
They played a first-time team, but the reality remains, they handled what was a home match for Qatar and dominated nearly every facet of the game. The Netherlands will be a much greater test for them. This is a great appetizer for what could be the world’s most-viewed matchup later in the afternoon.
NCAAF: 19 Tulane vs 24 Cincinnati 12:00 P.M.
Haven’t had your football fix yet? Well don’t worry, there’s a pretty good ranked matchup on. Cincinnati, coming into the season was fresh off a College Football Playoff berth but was lost key players to the NFL like Sauce Gardner and Desmond Ridder. This season was ultimately going to show whether it was NFL talent that led them to the promised land or team culture.
Well, this game could give us that answer. With a win, UC would go into Bowl season ranked for a fourth straight year. In order to do so though, they face their toughest test. Like getting up Friday after Thanksgiving and working out, this is going to be tough for the Bearcats.
FIFA World Cup: USA v England 2:00 P.M.
One of the World’s oldest rivalries. Dating back to July 4th, 1776, the United States and England will always go hand in hand throughout the history of our world.
Getting a World Cup game during a holiday weekend is almost poetic. Fox executives are already predicting this could be a top-five-ever viewed soccer matchup in the history of the United States. For context, in order to break into the top five, they would need to exceed 16.941 million viewers, no small task for a sport not exactly at the peak of popularity in the United States.
For the record, the #1 watched match was the Women’s World Cup final against Japan in 2015 which drew 25.4 million viewers. All that being said, this is a crucial game for the U.S. who is coming off a draw against Wales against an England team that dominated in their first game. Does the U.S. have a miracle in store for us?
NCAAF: Florida vs 16 Florida State 7:30 P.M.
If you’re still in the mood for sports after a dramatic USA game, we have a good football rivalry on tap to wet your whistle in anticipation of the big rivalry Saturday ahead.
FSU has had a decent season so far and had they not dropped two winnable games in early October, could have been fighting for a playoff spot. Unfortunately for them, that isn’t the case. But they could be fighting to get into the top ten with a win here. They face in-state rival Florida, an SEC team that has shown the ability to play ranked teams close and even beat Utah to start the year.
This should be an entertaining game for those who are still wanting to watch sports after the big soccer game that afternoon.
NBA: New Orleans Pelicans vs Memphis Grizzlies 8:00 P.M.
Maybe the NBA isn’t the most exciting watch prior to Christmas Day, but these teams feature prominent young stars battling it out. Ja Morant of the Grizzlies is probably the most electric young talent in the NBA right now and is a highlight reel every time he touches the ball.
For the Pelicans, the curious case of Zion Williamson seems to be solved for now. He has played 12 of their 17 games so far and is averaging 22 points and six rebounds and to his credit is also a highlight reel at times. The #1 and #2 picks of the 2019 NBA draft battle it out for all to see on NBA TV Friday night.
So at this point, you’re coming to the point of the holiday where it is now just a Saturday and you’re kinda over leftovers. Well don’t worry, we will inject you with some even more entertaining sports matchups!
We have college football’s game of the year, another intriguing World Cup matchup, and some other notable and fun college football rivalries. Put that remote down, we have it covered here!
NCAAF: 2 Ohio State vs 3 Michigan 12:00 P.M.
The Game between Ohio State and Michigan will be a war on Saturday and there are three key factors to watch during the undefeated showdown that will decide who wins.https://t.co/YcQJ5WvXpr pic.twitter.com/UUxMxnecHG
— The Silver Bulletin (@tSilverBulletin) November 23, 2022
As if you needed a reason to tune into this game, let’s set the stage for you. To start, both Big Ten teams come into this game at 11-0, with their College Football Playoff dreams still alive. The winner of this game all but clinches a berth in the playoff while the other may need some help ahead of them.
Last we saw them, it was Michigan finally defeating Ohio State with the likes of Aidan Hutchinson on the defensive end. Well, he ain’t walking through that door this year and Michigan will have their work cut out for them to stop a high-powered and heavily scrutinized Ohio State offense.
Whoever wins, just know we are in for the best college game of the year so far. Get your popcorn ready! There can be only one!
FIFA World Cup: Mexico v Argentina 2:00 P.M.
This is a very intriguing matchup that also features an international star and arguably the greatest player of a generation. The Argentinians are led by Lionel Messi, one of the best players of all time and he will be playing against a team whose goalkeeper has probably the highlight of the tournament so far with his penalty kick save from Robert Lewandowski followed by ole chants from the Mexican fans.
Look, it’s a world stage and the Argentinians were embarrassed by a Saudi Arabian team that seemed just happy to be there. Look for Lionel Messi to right the wrongs of this team in what is likely his last World Cup as well. Also, how fun would a Messi goal be against a team in Mexico that will be a tough out for whomever they play?
NCAAF: 9 Oregon vs 21 Oregon State 3:30 P.M.
The rivalry game referred to as the “Civil War” features a University of Oregon team looking to keep playoff hopes alive. They currently sit at #2 in the Pac-12 behind a USC team that is having a heck of a year. In order to keep pace in the conference, the Ducks need to take care of business against the Beavers, who are a feisty team currently at 8-3.
Their only three losses came at the hands of ranked opponents, so this is a team that doesn’t seem to have the horses to pull off the big win. In a rivalry, anything is possible. On a day filled with college football, this could have pretty lasting implications depending on the result of some of our other games.
NCAAF: Auburn vs 7 Alabama 3:30 P.M.
If you’re more into the SEC than the PAC-12, may I interest you in the Iron Bowl?
Maybe it doesn’t have the normal high stakes that we’ve been spoiled by in this rivalry, but that doesn’t make it any less fun to watch! On one side you have the mighty coach Nick Saban and Alabama taking on an Auburn team who has had a season to forget, to say the least.
Both teams are probably not happy with the way their season has turned out, so expect this to be played as their teams’ biggest game of the year! Sometimes, the best games are played with 0 pressure on anyone involved. These teams really aren’t playing for anything other than better bowl game opportunities, so we could see a great college football game played between two heated rivals. What’s not to love?
NCAAF: 15 Notre Dame vs 6 USC 7:30 P.M.
It’s been a while since we’ve seen these two square off, but I can assure you that the stakes are much greater than the last time.
Last time was a reeling USC team that hadn’t yet secured coach Lincoln Riley into the program, lose by more than two touchdowns against a Notre Dame team led by now LSU coach Brian Kelly. Both programs are amidst a massive change in their storied histories.
On one hand, you have USC returning to glory and looking to recapture the gold from the Pete Carrol days. On the other, you have a true blue blood independent looking for their next great coach to be the perennial power they always are. It helps both are ranked in the top 15 this year too! Enjoy this rivalry!
Ahh, the Sunday scaries. This is always a bittersweet day and probably the scariest Sunday of them all. The one after the Thanksgiving holiday when reality returns that we must march on and wait a whole year for the next. Our sports dream winds down, but there’s still some to watch.
11 NFL games between 1:00 P.M.-4:00 P.M.
As always, the NFL remains king of scheduling events. This year, they elected not to do any bye weeks during this holiday, giving us a full scope of NFL action while the most eyes are available. This is something we can all be thankful for this holiday.
Some good games Sunday: we have Bengals vs Titans, Cardinals vs Chargers, and defending champion Rams vs Chiefs. This is a wonderful way to spend seven more couch hours if you think you can handle it!
FIFA World Cup: Spain vs Germany 2:00 P.M.
In what many could have really seen as a potential final game, we get it in game two of group play for these teams!
Germany is coming off a stunning last-minute loss to Japan and looks to right their ship against a Spain team who looked absolutely dominant on Wednesday afternoon. Germany doesn’t often lose games they should win as they did Wednesday morning, so there will definitely be added motivation to play a world soccer superpower. Enjoy this one while your weekend still allows you to!
It Really is the Best Sports Weekend Ever
Well, there you have it, the sports weekend of a dream. It all starts early Thursday morning. Can you handle the sports intake that we are all going to have, or are you a casual who will have it on in the background? If I were you, I’d enjoy it while you can! We don’t often have this much excitement packed into one wonderful weekend! The biggest game on this list has to be the USA vs England, but don’t scoff at some of these NFL games we got as well. Eat turkey, be thankful and watch sports! It’s a simple formula for happiness!