Sports fans, once again, will prove to be the smart ones today. While lesser folks trample each other for 99-cent microwaves, we’ll be stuffing our faces with sports, leftovers and more sports. There’s a big and busy afternoon ahead of you, Minnesota Sports Fan, so get the remote and your favorite web browser ready…

  1. Play nice! Men’s college basketball: Gophers vs. Nebraska-Omaha (2 p.m., Williams Arena, 1500-AM, No TV): These young Gophers need a confidence boost after a rocky three-game trip to Puerto Rico. They’ll likely get that today against the Mavericks of the Summit League – if they can keep their hands to themselves:
  2. Clock strikes midnight? College football: Iowa at Nebraska (2:30 p.m., Ch. 5): Black Friday in Lincoln, Neb. Iowa badly needs this one, to both complete a perfect regular season and keep their College Football Playoff hopes alive. The Hawkeyes sit at No. 4. All of this means, of course, in crazy, crazy college football that Nebraska, struggling at 5-6, will pull the upset. Or not. It’s been a while since Iowa-Nebraska was a must-watch for anyone outside of those two states, but today it certainly is. This game is the first of what will be a dramatic final weekend at the top of the Big Ten standings:
  3. Record-breaker? Women’s college basketball: Minnesota vs. Stetson (3:45 p.m., No TV): Tune to 88.5-FM or follow along on the web as Rachel Banham makes a run at the Gophers’ all-time scoring record. She needs 31 top Lindsay Whalen:
  4. Zach back? NHL: Wild vs. Winnipeg (3 p.m., FSN, Xcel Center): Another Black Friday tradition: a home afternoon game for the Wild. Zach Parise is trying to set aside knee pain to get back in the lineup and get his team out of its funk:
  5. Minnesota rivalry. College hockey: Gophers vs. St. Cloud (6 p.m., FSN, Mariucci Arena): The Huskies look like the stronger team this season, but the Gophers have dominated St. Cloud at home and Don Lucia is looking for his 400th victory as Gophers coach:
  6. Three in a row? NBA: Wolves at Sacramento (9 p.m., FSN): There is absolutely no chance of you staying away for this, but we’ll tell you about it anyway in case you wake up on the couch with FSN on the tube and wonder what the heck is going on. The Wolves have won two in a row, but might be without point guard Ricky Rubio tonight as they go up against one of the league’s hottest players in Rajon Rondo:

... And we didn’t even mention Rangers-Bruins (noon, Ch. 11) for some old-time hockey, or Baylor at TCU (6:30 p.m., ESPN) for some big-time college football, or a dozen decent college basketball match-ups …

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