This Weekend in Sports: The Ryder Cup and MLB’s Final Weekend
The best professional golfers from the US and Europe are in Chicago to duel for the Ryder Cup, while Major League Baseball winds down its regular season. Here’s what to watch this weekend:
Friday, Sept. 28
The Ryder Cup
Medinah Country Club, Medinah, Ill.; 8 a.m. (ET); ESPN-TV
The US team, led by Davis Love III, takes on a European squad led by Jose Maria Olazabal for the Ryder Cup this weekend at Medinah Country Club. Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson and Jason Dufner are among the American players, while Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose and Paul Lawrie top Europe’s roster. Play starts Friday and continues through Sunday.
Saturday, Sept. 29
(14) Ohio St. at (20) Michigan St.
Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, Mich.; 3:30 p.m. (ET); ABC-TV
Urban Meyer leads Ohio State (4-0) into Spartan Stadium to take on Michigan State (3-1). Despite their rankings and records, both teams have struggled at times this year. Quarterback Braxton Miller leads the Buckeyes’ offense, while Spartan running back Le’Veon Bell’s is coming off a career-best 253-yard rushing day last week against Eastern Michigan.
Tampa Bay Rays at Chicago White Sox
US Cellular Field, Chicago, Ill.; 4:05 p.m. (ET): FOX-TV
Two teams who entered Thursday just outside of the American League playoff picture square off while trying to stay in the race. Chicago (82-73) has lost seven of its last 10 contests to fall one game back of Detroit in the AL Central. The White Sox will send Gavin Floyd (10-11, 4.56) to the hill against a Rays’ batting order capable of chipping away at opposing pitchers. Winners of seven games in a row, Tampa Bay (85-70) trails Oakland by three games for the second AL Wild Card spot. The Rays start Jeremy Hellickson (9-10, 3.20) against Chicago’s potent bats, including five players with more than 20 home runs in 2012.
(12) Texas at Oklahoma St.
Boone Pickens Stadium, Stillwater, Okla. ; 7:50 p.m. (ET); FOX-TV
Off to a fast start in 2012, Texas (3-0) faces defending Big 12 champion Oklahoma State (2-1) in Stillwater. Longhorns quarterback David Ash may create problems for the Cowboys’ pass defense. Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy hasn’t named his starting quarterback yet, but either Wes Lunt or J.W. Walsh will challenge the Texas defense.
Wisconsin at (22) Nebraska
Nebraska Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, Neb.; 8 p.m. (ET); ABC-TV
Unranked Wisconsin (3-1) heads to Lincoln to face the 12th-ranked Cornhuskers. The Badgers could be without Heisman Trophy finalist Montee Ball, who was injured in last week’s win over UTEP. Nebraska (3-1) will look to quarterback Taylor Martinez to pick apart the Wisconsin defense.
Edwin Rodriguez vs. Jason Escalera
MGM Grand at Foxwoods, Mashantucket, Conn.; 9:30 p.m. (ET); HBO-TV
Undefeated Jason “Monstruo” Escalera faces unbeaten Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez in a battle of super middleweights on the HBO Boxing after Dark series. The dangerous Escalera is 13-0-1 with 12 wins by knockout, while Rodriguez is 21-0-0 with 14 knockouts. This bout figures to be a war between two legitimate contenders. The under card has Luis Del Valle vs. Vic Darchinyan and Zsolt Erdei vs. Isaac Chilemba.
Sunday, Sept. 30
The Ryder Cup
Medinah Country Club, Medinah, Ill.; 12 p.m. (ET); NBC-TV
It’s the U.S. versus Europe in the final round of the Ryder Cup. Europe has won four of the past five cups, but the U.S. leads the all-time series 25-11-1.
Dover International Speedway; Dover, Del.; 2:15 p.m. (ET); ESPN—TV
NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Chase heads to the ‘Monster Mile’ in Dover, where points leader Jimmie Johnson will try to extend his one-point lead over second-place Brad Keselowski. Third-ranked Denny Hamlin is seven points behind Johnson after winning last week in New Hampshire.
New Orleans Saints at Green Bay Packers
Lambeau Field, Green Bay, Wisc.; 4:25 p.m. (ET); FOX-TV
After a difficult start to the season, New Orleans (0-3) travels to Lambeau Field in search of its first victory. Saints’ quarterback Drew Brees faces a formidable Packers’ defense that thrives on forcing turnovers. After a controversial call that resulted in a loss to the Seahawks on Monday night, Green Bay (1-2) would prefer less drama. Packers’ quarterback Aaron Rodgers should perform well against a suspect Saints’ defense.
N.Y. Giants at Philadelphia Eagles
Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pa.: 8:20 p.m. (ET); NBC-TV
Philadelphia (2-1) hosts the defending Super Bowl champions in an NFC East battle in primetime on Sunday night. The Eagles’ offensive line must protect quarterback Michael Vick from the Giants’ strong pass rush. New York (2-1) quarterback Eli Manning may be having a career year. The Philadelphia defense will look to force him into mistakes.