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Screen Gems: TV the week of December 6

The U (9 p.m. Saturday, ESPN) -- This documentary on University of Miami football in the 1980s Um contains enough ugly spots -- the pay-for-play allegations, the NCAA violations, the arrogance and hot-doggery of the players -- that the university tried to kill it. But it's also got the on-the-field performances that led to four national championships during the decade.

Alice (9 p.m. Sunday, Syfy) -- A surrealist adaptation of Alice in Wonderland that's more Jefferson Airplane than Lewis Carroll, this two-part miniseries (it concludes in the same slot Monday) has a cast of heavy hitters, including Tim Curry, Harry Dean Stanton and -- as the merciless Queen of Hearts, of course -- Kathy Bates.

Men of a Certain Age (10 p.m. Monday, TNT) -- Ray Romano, Scott Bakula and Andre Braugher go middle-age crazy in this series about college buddies in their 40s wondering if they really should have grown up, or even if they did.

The Christmas Hope (8 p.m. Saturday, Lifetime Movie Network) -- The third -- and, everybody involved swears on pain of lobotomy-by-chainsaw, final -- film of the morbidly sentimental Christmas Shoes series has Madeleine Stowe as a social worker who brings a foster kid home for the holidays. Will the cute, spunky little girl save Stowe's rocky marriage? Maybe, but this is a Christmas Shoes movie, so it's just as likely that somebody will croak. Prettily, of course.

Let me program your TiVo! Just click on my best bets for the week at www.tivo.com/guruguide.


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