'Thursday Night Football' and an interstate rivalry

Peyton Manning and the Colts try to turn their luck around against the offensively challenged Titans, college football's superstars get their due and an in-state rivalry in Iowa is better than ever with two ranked teams.

NFL: "Thursday Night Football" matches up the 6-6 Colts and the 5-7 Titans at LP Field in Nashville. After a mediocre 6-3 start, the Colts looked less like world-beaters than they had in previous years, but most of the country believed their best football was still ahead of them. Instead, Peyton Manning has looked human (Delhomme-ian, even) for the first time in a long time, throwing a total of 11 picks in his team's three straight losses. Manning's "Manning Face" is starting to look like a permanent fixture, but it's hard to believe one of the greatest quarterbacks ever to play the game can't find his way out of this slump.

On the other hand, a couple more pick-sixes from Manning may be the only way the Titans find the end zone tonight. Tennessee has recorded just six points in its last two outings and hasn't scored an offensive touchdown since Nov. 14. Any other day, Peyton Manning vs. Kerry Collins would be about as fair a fight as Marion Jones vs. Snooki in a footrace, but this one holds plenty of drama as the world watches to see if Manning's still got it.

College Football: The best in the college game are in Orlando tonight for The Home Depot College Football Awards. The ceremony will provide a little warm-up for Saturday night's big Heisman Trophy presentation. Honors will be handed out to the nation's best quarterback, linemen, kickers, etc. No doubt with the salaries these guys are making they'll be dressed to the nines! (Cheap shot, but you'll take it and like it.)

Women's College Basketball: Both No. 15 Iowa State and No. 19 Iowa enter tonight's contest with just one loss on the year, and it's the first time in 41 meetings that both teams are nationally ranked. The Hawkeyes own a 21-19 advantage in the all-time series, but the Cyclones have won seven of the last 10 meetings, including last year's 85-66 beatdown in Ames. It's a balanced Hawkeyes team (all five Iowa starters are averaging double figures), but keep an eye out for Kachine Alexander in the black and gold, she's second all-time at Iowa with 27 double-doubles.

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