Another season of college football is underway. But don't fret if you missed the first two weekends. There's plenty of football left between now and when a national champion is crowned at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans on Jan. 13, 2020. And if you know where to find a college football live stream, you don't have to miss any important game.
NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision teams — basically, all of the major conferences — play a 12-game regular season schedule between now and early December. Throw in conference title games and a steady parade of bowl games, and the season stretches into early 2020.
Here's how to watch the 2019 NCAA college football season, including where to find live streams of the games and how to use a VPN if you're far from home when your favorite school is taking the field.
Where can I watch 2019 NCAA college football games?
Do you have a TV? Well, when Saturday rolls around, turn on your TV and start channel surfing. There's a pretty good chance you'll find a game airing on some channel starting noon ET and lasting long past midnight.
All the major television networks — ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC — air games on free, over-the-air TV on Saturdays, so all you'll need is an HDTV antenna to watch those broadcasts. ABC features games from a wide selection of conferences, while college football games on Fox primarily feature schools in the Big Ten, Big 12 and Pac-12 conferences. CBS specializes in SEC games, while NBC carries all the home games for the University of Notre Dame.
Your options expand considerably if you subscribe to cable. ESPN is generally the place to be on Saturdays, as it airs games across its multiple cable networks. You'll also find games on FS1, Fox's cable sports channel, as well as the NBC Sports and CBS Sports cable channels. Several college football conferences — the ACC, Big 10, Pac-12 and SEC — have their own cable networks, too, that broadcast college football games.
While most college football games kickoff on Saturday, TV's insatiable appetite for live sporting events means that some teams schedule games for Thursday and Friday nights — and some games even air earlier in the week. The bottom line: there's plenty of opportunities to watch college football during the 2019 season.
Canadian college football fans can turn to DAZN, which airs Pac-12 college football games. Other games will be broadcast by TSN north of the border.
What are the best college football games to stream this weekend?
Here's some of the top college football matchups that are kicking off today (Sept. 14), and where you can watch them.
- Ohio State vs. Indiana, noon ET on Fox
- Pitt vs. Penn State, noon ET on ABC
- New Mexico vs. Notre Dame, 2:30 p.m. ET on NBC
- Alabama vs. South Carolina, 3:30 p.m. ET on CBS
- Stanford vs. Central Florida, 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPN
- USC vs. BYU, 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC
- Arizona State vs. Michigan State, 4 p.m. ET on Fox
- Iowa vs. Iowa State, 4 p.m. ET on FS1
- Florida vs. Kentucky, 7 p.m. ET on ESPN
- Clemson vs. Syracuse, 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC
- Hawaii vs. Washington, 7:30 p.m. ET on Pac-12 Network
- Florida State vs. Virginia, 7:30 p.m. ET on ACC Network
- Oklahoma vs. UCLA, 8 p.m. ET on Fox
- Texas vs. Rice, 8 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network
How can I use a VPN to watch 2019 college football games?
With the next four months filled with college football games to watch, odds are good that you're going to be traveling at some point during the season. If you find yourself in an area where you don't have access to your normal streaming options, a virtual private network can come in handy. Using a VPN, you can surf the web as if you were at home, with full access to your normal streaming options.
If you need a good VPN service, our pick for the best overall VPN after testing many services is ExpressVPN. You'll get good speeds, thanks to 3,000 servers in 160 locations across 94 countries. And the customer support from ExpressVPN impresses, too. Still, it's not the only option available — here are our top picks.
ExpressVPN: This VPN runs on almost any platform and offers enterprise-level encryption. But the reason to go with ExpressVPN is it delivers top-notch performance while still being easy to use. And customer support is happy to step in if you run into problems.
One month of service at ExpressVPN costs $12.95, but you can lower that to $6.67 a month if you opt for a year of service; ExpressVPN will throw in three additional months for free. There's a 30-day money-back guarantee if you're not satisfied.
NordVPN: NordVPN is where to turn if privacy is key to you. This VPN uses 2084-bit encryption while also working well with streaming services. While NordVPN costs $11.95 per month, you can cut that down to $2.99 per month if you sign up for a multi-year service plan.View Deal
IPVanish: You can connect up to 10 devices at once when you opt for IPVanish, making it a good option for when you're traveling. A special offer cuts the monthly rate to $7.50 and you can save even more by opting for a longer plan.View Deal
How can I watch 2019 college football games on a live stream?
Every channel broadcasting college football also lets you live stream the game either over the Web or through a mobile app. For games on ABC and ESPN, go to ESPN's website or download the sport channel's mobile app (Android, iOS) to watch on your smartphone or tablet. That's also true of games on Fox and FS1, which stream on the Fox Sports Go website and are available to go through the Fox Sports Go app (Android, iOS).
There's a catch to all this, unfortunately. You've got to subscribe to a cable or satellite TV service to use any of these websites or apps, which will ask you to sign in with your TV provider's login data. So cord cutters are mostly out of luck here.
We say "mostly," because you can still watch college football live streaming this season through ESPN+, a $5-a-month subscription service that doesn't require you to sign in via a cable provider. ESPN+ usually doesn't feature top-tier matchups — most of the games are from conferences in the NCAA Division 1 Football Championship Division, though you'll find some games involving teams from the Big 12 conference on the streaming service, which you can watch through the ESPN website or mobile app.
You'll also find a limited slate of college football games streaming on Facebook this season. Stadium College Football plans to offer 14 games through Facebook Watch.
How can I live stream college football games without a cable subscription?
You're still able to watch all the college football you want in the 2019 season without paying for cable TV — but you will need to pay for a standalone streaming service. The trick is to find a service that offers all the channels you want for a monthly price you're willing to pay. Here are your options.
AT&T Now: The service formerly known as DirecTV Now includes ESPN, ESPN2, FS1 and (in most markets) local broadcast networks in its $50-a-month Plus package. ESPNU and the CBS Sports Network require you to jump up to the $70-a-month Max package. For conference-specific channels like the Big 10 and SEC networks, you'll need to pay $110 each month for AT&T Now's Choice service.View Deal
Fubo.TV: The sports-centric Fubo.TV service would seem like an ideal choice to watch college football games, and for the most part, it is. The $55-a-month service includes all the local broadcast channels in most markets, plus FS1, the Big 10 Network, the Pac-12 Network, and CBS Sports Network. An $8.99-a-month Sports Plus add-on includes multiple Pac-12 and Fox Sports network feeds. But Fubo.TV doesn't offer ESPN or any of its affiliate channels.View Deal
Hulu + Live TV: The $45-a-month Hulu + Live TV service probably offers the most straightforward package of channels. In addition to local channels in most markets, you get five ESPN channels, FS1, CBS Sports Network and the conference TV channels for the ACC, Big 10 and SEC. A cloud DVR feature lets you record college football games and watch them later at your leisure.View Deal
PlayStation Vue: The entry-level Access plan gets you ESPN and ESPN2 plus FS1 and your local channels in most markets for $49 every month. Upgrading to the $55-a-month Core tier adds more ESPN channels, the CBS Sports Network and the ACC, Big 10 and SEC networks.View Deal
Sling TV: Sling splits its channels between the Orange and Blue tiers, each of which cost $25 a month. ESPN's channels live on the Orange tier, while FS1 is part of the blue package. Your best bet is to combine them both in the $40 Orange + Blue offering, especially since a sale cuts the cost to $25 a month for the first month. A $10-a-month Sports Extra add-on tacks on ESPNU and the Pac-12 and SEC networks, among other channels. Note that Sling TV only offers local TV channels in select cities.View Deal
YouTubeTV: Like Hulu, YouTubeTV offers a pretty straightforward package. You pay $50 and you get 70-plus channels including four ESPN channels, FS1, CBS Sports Network, and channels for the ACC, Big 10 and SEC. You'll get local channels, too, in most markets, plus a cloud DVR feature for recording college football games.View Deal