When it comes to measuring respect in college football, there's one clear way to see which teams are getting their due: see who's on TV. In the BCS era, there are four big players — CBS, FOX, NBC (for Notre Dame games) and, of course, ESPN — driving college football forward. To appear every week on those four channels (plus ABC and ESPN2, both in the ESPN family) is to be accepted among the college football elite, and to be part of the national conversation.
Through eight weeks of the season, here's how many times each AP Top 25 team has played on each of those networks:
The biggest winners: Alabama, Ohio State and LSU, each of which has played six national TV games.
(No team has played as many national TV games as Notre Dame, though. Thanks to their deal with NBC, they've played seven nationally televised games — but they're just outside the Top 25.)
And the teams whose fan bases have a reason to complain: