How to Watch College Football on ESPN Plus in 2023

By Jim Kimble / Updated September 15, 2023

ESPN Plus is carrying more than 500 college football games in 2023 across Smart TVs, streaming devices and smartphones. 

As in years past, fans of Big 12 Conference, Ohio Valley and many teams within the NCAA Division I Football Subdivision (FBS) can watch live games without cable or a subscription to a live TV streaming service. 

The 2023-24 season on ESPN Plus promises to be “the most expansive lineup in the history of the platform,” according to ESPN, with games from the Southeastern Conference, Big 12 Conference, and Atlantic Coast Conference throughout the season.

Teams from Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) are also flooding into ESPN’s streaming platform this season. The FCS teams include the Big Sky, Patriot League and Ivy League.

Kickoff weekend has exclusive games from 9 teams including the ACC, Big 12, and SEC.

You can sign up for an ESPN+ subscription for $9.99 per month. But remember, you can also get ESPN+ through two Disney Bundle plans, and Hulu + Live TV.

How to Watch College Football Live on ESPN Plus

Cord-cutters have a wide variety of options to watch college football games live on television, Mac computer or smartphone. 

Smart TVs, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Google Chromecast or Apple TV support streaming college football games on ESPN+ just like a live cable TV channel.

One key difference is that subscribers use the ESPN app to watch live TV that’s streaming on ESPN Plus.

Samsung Smart TVs, Sony Bravia, and any TVs running on Android TV, Google TV or Roku software support watching ESPN Plus through the ESPN app. 

college football on espn+
(Photo credit: Jim Kimble / The Cord Cutting Report)

Game consoles including XBox and PlayStation support watching ESPN Plus. You can likewise stream college football games through the ESPN app on an iPhone or iPad (with current iOS), or any Android mobile device. 

With all of the above devices, you just need to take the following steps: 

  1. Sign up for ESPN Plus online
  2. Download the ESPN app from the app hub of your TV or streaming device
  3. Launch the ESPN app on your TV, and sign in with your ESPN Plus account

There are plenty of ways to watch ESPN Plus on any TV if you have an LG Smart TV, Vizio or another popular brand that is unsupported. 

Fans using a PC, Chromebook and Mac computer to watch games can simply watch ESPN Plus through a current web browser.

Why can’t I watch college football on ESPN Plus?

Not every college football game or conference is available on ESPN Plus. 

The Big Ten Conference has negotiated multi-year deals with broadcast networks such as NBC, FOX and CBS. Some games may be on local ABC stations as well.

Most games from Power 5 conferences such as the Atlantic Coast Conference or Big Ten Conference require a subscription to a live TV streaming service, or a cable or satellite service. 

The good news for cord-cutters is that you can watch local broadcast networks for free by using a TV antenna.

You can read my guides on how to watch ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, ACC Network (ACCN), Big Ten Network, CBS Sports Network, FS1, and SEC Network, which covers most college football games during the season. 

DIRECTV STREAM, Fubo, Hulu + Live TV and YouTube TV have the most comprehensive channel lineups for NCAA football and college basketball coverage. 

Sling TV is the best budget option at $40 per month, but remains thin on local channels and doesn’t carry CBS anywhere. 

Pac-12 Network and Longhorn Network are available on only a few live TV streaming services. 

Some of these streaming services such as DIRECTV STREAM, Fubo and YouTube TV have a free trial that lasts a week without any obligation. 

Hulu + Live TV is the only live TV streaming service that bundles ESPN+, Disney+ and carries local and cable channels that have NCAA football games from major conferences.

Just remember to cancel before the trial ends if you decide that the streaming service isn’t for you.

ESPN Plus College Football Schedule

The ESPN Plus college football schedule includes the NCAA Division I Football Subdivision (FBS), formerly known as Division 1-A. FCS schools from the Big Sky, MVFC, Patriot League, Ivy League, Southern, Southland, MEAC, SWAC, ASUN/WAC, the Big South-OVC Football Association and Pioneer are on ESPN+ as well.

The 2023-24 season starts Thursday, August 31, 2023 with 218 games in September that are exclusive to ESPN+.

The Bulldogs host UT Martin on September 2 at 6 pm/ET exclusively on ESPN+. Nine other teams, including #17 Kansas State, #22 Ole Miss, Arkansas, Baylor, Cincinnati, Kansas, Iowa State, Oklahoma State and Syracuse are part of the opening weekend lineup. 

Saturday, September 16

NoonLong Island University at BaylorBig 12 Now on ESPN+
NoonCentral Connecticut at Kent StateESPN+
NoonHoly Cross at YaleESPN+
NoonCornell at LehighESPN+
NoonDavidson at MaristESPN+
12:30 p.m.Stonehill at GeorgetownESPN+
1 p.m.Penn at ColgateESPN+
1 p.m.St. Thomas (MN) at HarvardESPN+
2 p.m.Norfolk State at TempleESPN+
2 p.m.Indiana State at Ball StateESPN+
2 p.m.UMass at Eastern MichiganESPN+
2 p.m.Robert Morris at Youngstown StateESPN+
3 p.m.Illinois State at Eastern IllinoisESPN+
3 p.m.Florida Memorial at GramblingESPN+
3:30 p.m.East Carolina at Appalachian StateESPN+
3:30 p.m.Hampton at HowardESPN+
4 p.m.Brown at BryantESPN+
4 p.m.William & Mary at Charleston SouthernESPN+
4 p.m.Utah Tech at Northern ArizonaESPN+
4 p.m.North American at Portland StateESPN+
5 p.m.Furman at Kennesaw StateESPN+
6 p.m.Georgia State at CharlotteESPN+
6 p.m.The Citadel at ChattanoogaESPN+
6 p.m.Presbyterian at WoffordESPN+
6 p.m.Northern Iowa at Idaho StateESPN+
6 p.m.Clark Atlanta at Savannah StateESPN+
6 p.m.Kentucky State at AllenESPN+
6 p.m.Gardner-Webb at Tennessee StateESPN+
6 p.m.Western Carolina at Eastern KentuckyESPN+
6 p.m.Towson at Morgan StateESPN+
6:30 p.m.Villanova at UCFBig 12 Now on ESPN+
7 p.m.South Alabama at Oklahoma StateBig 12 Now on ESPN+
7 p.m.Tarleton at Texas TechBig 12 Now on ESPN+
7 p.m.Miami (Ohio) at CincinnatiBig 12 Now on ESPN+
7 p.m.Prairie View A&M at SMUESPN+
7 p.m.Samford at AuburnESPN+/SECN+
7 p.m.Louisiana at UABESPN+
7 p.m.Texas Southern at RiceESPN+
7 p.m.North Texas at Louisiana TechESPN+
7 p.m.Murray State at Middle TennesseeESPN+
7 p.m.San Jose State at ToledoESPN+
7 p.m.Stony Brook at Arkansas StateESPN+
7 p.m.Jackson State at Texas StateESPN+
7 p.m.Duquesne at Coastal CarolinaESPN+
7 p.m.Lindenwood at Western IllinoisESPN+
7 p.m.North Alabama at Tennessee TechESPN+
7 p.m.Southern Illinois at Southeast MissouriESPN+
7 p.m.Houston Christian at UT MartinESPN+
7 p.m.Stephen F. Austin at Northwestern StateESPN+
7 p.m.East Tennessee State at Austin PeayESPN+
7 p.m.Alabama A&M at SouthernESPN+
8 p.m.Lincoln at Cal PolyESPN+
8 p.m.Incarnate Word at Abilene ChristianESPN+
10 p.m.Southern Utah at UC DavisESPN+

Friday, September 22

7 p.m.Brown at HarvardESPN+

Saturday, September 23

NoonCornell at YaleESPN+
1 p.m.Wofford at VMIESPN+
1 p.m.Stonehill at FordhamESPN+
1 p.m.Butler at StetsonESPN+
1 p.m.Marist at ValparaisoESPN+
1:30 p.m.Lehigh at DartmouthESPN+
2 p.m.Mercer at FurmanESPN+
2 p.m.Morehouse at Edward WatersESPN+
2:30 p.m.Charleston Southern at Western CarolinaESPN+
3 p.m.Chattanooga at SamfordESPN+
3 p.m.Bryant at PrincetonESPN+
3 p.m.Virginia-Lynchburg at Robert MorrisESPN+
3 p.m.Utah Tech at Missouri StateESPN+
3 p.m.McNeese at Eastern IllinoisESPN+
3 p.m.Bethune-Cookman at Jackson StateESPN+
3:30 p.m.Penn at BucknellESPN+
4 p.m.Montana at Northern ArizonaESPN+
4 p.m.Cal Poly at Portland StateESPN+
4 p.m.Clark Atlanta at MilesESPN+
4 p.m.Houston Christian at SE LouisianaESPN+
6 p.m.Gardner-Webb at East CarolinaESPN+
6 p.m.Northern Colorado at Idaho StateESPN+
6 p.m.Southeast Missouri at Eastern KentuckyESPN+
6 p.m.Albany at Morgan StateESPN+
6 p.m.The Citadel at South Carolina StateESPN+
6 p.m.Alabama State at Florida A&MESPN+
7 p.m.Sam Houston at HoustonBig 12 Now on ESPN+
7 p.m.Kennesaw State at Tennessee TechESPN+
7 p.m.Charlotte at FloridaESPN+/SECN+
7 p.m.Lincoln (CA) at LamarESPN+
7 p.m.North American at Incarnate WordESPN+
7 p.m.Abilene Christian at Central ArkansasESPN+
7 p.m.UT Martin at North AlabamaESPN+
7 p.m.Austin Peay at Stephen F. AustinESPN+
7 p.m.Southwest Baptist at TarletonESPN+
8 p.m.Western Illinois at Southern UtahESPN+
10 p.m.Eastern Washington at UC DavisESPN+

Saturday, September 30

NoonMorgan State at YaleESPN+
NoonHoward at Robert MorrisESPN+
NoonMiles at Central StateESPN+
NoonStetson at MaristESPN+
12:30 p.m.Fordham at GeorgetownESPN+
1 p.m.East Tennessee State at SamfordESPN+
1 p.m.Virginia Lynchburg at Delaware StateESPN+
1 p.m.Dartmouth at PennESPN+
1 p.m.Drake at Morehead StateESPN+
2 p.m.Southwest Minnesota State at ValparaisoESPN+
2 p.m.North Carolina A&T at Norfolk StateESPN+
2 p.m.Colgate at CornellESPN+
2 p.m.Western Carolina at The CitadelESPN+
2 p.m.Austin Peay at LindenwoodESPN+
3 p.m.Weber State at Northern ColoradoESPN+
4 p.m.VMI at MercerESPN+
4 p.m.Campbell at North Carolina CentralESPN+
4 p.m.Tarleton at SE LouisianaESPN+
5 p.m.Missouri State at Southern IllinoisESPN+
6 p.m.Chattanooga at WoffordESPN+
6 p.m.Fort Valley State at AllenESPN+
6 p.m.Kennesaw State at Charleston SouthernESPN+
6 p.m.Fort Valley State at AllenESPN+
7 p.m.Indiana State at Murray StateESPN+
7 p.m.Tennessee State at UT MartinESPN+
7 p.m.Eastern Illinois at Northwestern StateESPN+
7 p.m.Lamar at Houston ChristianESPN+
7 p.m.Eastern Kentucky at North AlabamaESPN+
7 p.m.Texas A&M Commerce at Stephen F. AustinESPN+
7 p.m.Grambling at Prairie View A&MESPN+
8 p.m.Central Arkansas at Southern UtahESPN+
8 p.m.Nicholls at McNeeseESPN+
8 p.m.UC Davis at Cal PolyESPN+

How to Watch College Football games on ESPN Plus FAQs

These are questions that NCAA football fans ask when searching for ways to watch their favorite teams on ESPN Plus.

Does ESPN Plus Have College Football?

While it doesn’t carry the ESPN suite of cable TV channels, such as Big Ten Network or the Pac-12 Network, ESPN+ does cover college football games you won’t find elsewhere. 

In 2023, ESPN Plus will stream more than 500 games from the NCAA Division I Football Subdivision (FBS) and Football Champion Subdivision (FCS). 

There are 133 schools and 10 conferences in FBS. The FCS has 128 teams.

ESPN Plus streams live NCAA football games from FBS conferences including the SEC, Big 12, American, ACC, CUSA, MAC and Sun Belt.

college football on espn+
(Photo credit: Jim Kimble / The Cord Cutting Report)

The FCS schools on ESPN+ include the Big Sky, MVFC, Patriot League, Ivy League, Southern, Southland, MEAC, SWAC, ASUN/WAC, the Big South-OVC Football Association and Pioneer.

Is Big 12 Football on ESPN Plus?

Big 12 football games will be on ESPN Plus during the 2023-24 season. More than 20 Big 12 Now games have been confirmed for the season.  

Big 12 games are scheduled to air on ESPN+, ESPN, FS1, FOX and CBS.

This year the Big 12 Conference will have 14 teams, including newcomers such as BYU, Houston and Cincinnati. The Big 12 Football Championship game airs on ABC.

Does ESPN Plus have Ohio State Buckeyes Football?

ESPN Plus does not stream Ohio State Football. You can watch the Buckeyes on Big Ten Network, ABC, and FOX.

Can I watch SEC football on ESPN Plus?

You can watch select, non-conference SEC football games on ESPN Plus throughout the 2023 season. There will be 14 SEC games total on ESPN+ with one game from each school.

You can look at the upcoming SEC game schedule for ESPN Plus.

Do I get NDSU Bison Football on ESPN Plus?

You can watch North Dakota State University (NDSU) Bison football games with an ESPN Plus subscription. You can sign up for ESPN+, and pay only $9.99 per month. You can look over the NDSU football schedule on ESPN Plus for more information. 

Can I watch BYU football on ESPN Plus?

Brigham Young University, home to the BYU Cougars, is part of the Big 12 Conference this year. You can watch live games on ESPN+, ESPN, FS1, FOX and CBS.

Can you watch Drake University football on ESPN Plus?

You can watch the Drake University Bulldogs on ESPN Plus during the 2023 season. A subscription costs $9.99 per month.

Can I watch Clemson football on ESPN Plus?

You might be able to watch an occasional Clemson Tigers game on ESPN+ because some ACC games are expected to be on the streaming platform this year. But most games air on ACC Network, ABC, ESPN and ESPN2.

Is Florida State football on ESPN Plus?

Florida State Seminoles football may have some games on ESPN Plus this year. But since the Seminoles are part of the ACC Conference, you will find most games on ABC, ACC Network, ESPN and ESPN2.

Can you watch Georgia Football on ESPN Plus?

You can watch some Georgia Football games on ESPN Plus. The Bulldogs will be on the service during some non-conference games during the 2023 season. 

Can I watch Montana Grizzly Football on ESPN Plus?

You can watch most Montana Grizzlies football games on ESPN+. The team is part of the Big Sky Conference. The team has one game scheduled to air on ESPN2 on Oct. 14 against the Idaho Vandals.

Can I watch ISU football on ESPN Plus?

Yes. You can watch the Iowa State University (ISU) Cyclones on ESPN Plus. So far, games are scheduled to air on ESPN Plus and FOX.

Is Michigan Football on ESPN Plus?

Michigan Wolverines Football is not on ESPN Plus this season. You can find games on CBS, Big Ten Network and FOX. 

How to get college football on ESPN Plus

There are multiple options when it comes to watching college football on ESPN Plus.

ESPN Plus subscribers stream live NCAA football games within the NCAA Division I Football Subdivision (FBS). Subscribers can watch live NHL, MLB, soccer matches and UFC. A subscription is $9.99 per month.

Disney Bundle Trio Basic has Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ (all with ads) for $12.99 per month. You save 49 percent compared to having separate subscriptions. 

Disney Bundle Trio Premium has Disney Plus and Hulu (no ads) with ESPN+ (with ads) for $19.99 per month. Trio Premium lets you save 44 percent compared to separate subscriptions. 

Hulu + Live TV rolls together 75 live TV channels such as ESPN, ESPN2, and Big Ten Network along with local NBC, CBS, ABC and FOX networks. Subscribers get full access to ESPN+ and Disney+ for $69.99 per month. 

For more news on streaming, how-to guides and reviews, head over to the main page of The Cord Cutting Report or follow the CCR on Google News.

Jim is a seasoned industry expert with over two decades of journalism experience. He has been at the forefront of the cord-cutting movement since 2016, testing and writing about TV-related products and services. He founded The Cord Cutting Report in 2016, and serves as the editor.

Major publications, including MarketWatch, Forbes, and South Florida Sun Sentinel, have interviewed Kimble for his years of expertise. He gives advice on the complexities consumers are navigating with streaming options, and over-the-air TV. Kimble has been a staff writer or correspondent for several award-winning, daily newspapers, including The Boston Globe.