2012-11-30 14:52

I'm back from vacation and the final week of the regular season is on (OK, there is also the Navy - Army game NEXT week, but that's it!)

This week is for some teams the last chance to become Bowl Eligible but winning a sixth game or to improve the record to get a better chance for a Bowl.

And for some teams it means championship game, win it and be it or lose it and nobody will remember your effort of the season.

One crucial game is already played, the Louisville - Rutgers game was on Thursday.
I missed that and I had not the chance to write something for a preview, I was basically on the road the whole day yesterday.

So they played and Rutgers was one win ahead before that.
So if they had won it, they would have the championship of the Big East all for themself, if they had lost it, they would share the title with at least 3 teams, Rutgers, Louisville and Syracuse and even Cincinnati has the chance the get also a share if they win against UConn on Saturday.
BUT the winner of this game would also get the very lucrative BCS-Bowl-Berth, either Fiesta-, Orange- or Sugar-Bowl, depened on the seating of the other teams playing for it.

To make it short, i would have guessed Rutgers would win it all behind their stingy defense, but they LOST against Louisville 20-17.

So the Big East will be split between 3-4 teams and Louisville will play for the big money.

Now let's have a look at the conferences which do NOT play a championship game, since those will be on my list.

Big 12:
There is Kansas State and Oklahoma with the same conference record (7-1) and then there os no team with two losses.
Means, if Kansas State wins this week, they win the championship-share of the Big 12 and the BCS-Bowl-Berth for the Fiesta Bowl.
Oklahoma would win also a share of the title with a win and they would get the BCS-Bowl-Berth with a KSU loss.

Big East:
Already settled, Louisville, Rutgers and Syracuse get a share of the title and Louisville will play the BCS-Bowl.
Open is, if Cincinnati also will get a share of the Title.

Mountain west:
There are Fresno State and San Diego State already fixed with a share of Mountain west Championship.
Boise will have to play Nevada and if they win, they get also a share of the title.
The TOP 5 of the conference, if eligible (which they are this year), can play in bowls, they do not qualify for a BCS-Bowl this year, because of their rankings.
The MWC is not an automatic BCS Bowl bid chonference, so they have to rank in the TOP 12 or TOP 16 to have hope for a place their and the best team so far is Boise State ranked 20th.
They won't jump that high. 99% sure.

Sun Belt:
Arkansas State and Middle Tennessee will battle it out this week.
The winner takes it all.
First two teams in the conference will play a Bowl for sure if eligible (which they are this year).
The SBC also has no automatic bid for a BCS Bowl and they fall under the same rule as the MWC.
There is NO team out of this conference ranked at the moment, so no chance here.

This is over, Utah State has won the title.
Utah State also would have to be ranked TOP 12 to get an BCS Bowl bid, which they do not, since they are ranked #24 at the moment.

At the moment there are 71 Bowl eligible teams and 2 teams can also become eligible if they win this week.

But there are only 35 Bowls with 70 participants. So some teams will be left out.
Who this will be, we will, but probably a team out of the SBC ( they have 5 eligible members and only 2 garanteed spots) or from the MAC (they have 3 garanteed spots, but also 5 eligible teams)


#17 Kent State vs #21 Northern Illinois
The MAC Championship game will be interesting to see.
Kent State did win this season out of nowhere.
Darrell Hazell, the HC of Kent State did start last year as the new HC with 5-7 and that was around the best Kent State did in the last decarde.
So their 11-1 record (with the lone loss against Kentucky from the SEC) is VERY impressive.
I see them as a favorite in this, Northern Illinois is a very good football team, but I think the momentum is on the side of the Golden Flashes.
NIU by the way is the defending Champion and do also have a 11-1 record and both teams are perfect in the MAC.
Close game expected, but Kent State will win.
If Kent State wins, it MIGHT happen that they jump enough spots to get a BCS Bowl Berth.

#16 UCLA @ #8 Stanford
The PAC 12 Championship game.
Damn it. What should I do?
They played that game last week and Stanford did win on the road.
So why should UCLA win NOW?
I still think that it is tough to beat an opponent twice a season, so there come my doubts.
But I can't ignore the fact that Stanford plays at home, so I pick Stanford and I hope for a close game.
The winner will play in the Rose Bowl (a BCS Bowl) against the winner out of the Big Ten.

UCF @ Tulsa
The Conference USA Championship game matchup was also played once this season, and Tulsa had won by 2 points.
So expect another close game here.
I do expect Tulsa to win again, I think they are a the better team, but we will see.
No BCS Berth possible, so all regular Bowl rules are valid, means the TOP 6 teams would get a Bowl bid if eligible, this season only 5 teams are.

#2 Alabama @ #3 Georgia
The SEC Championship game is one of the biggest games of college football, each year, since almost a decade.
Because since it is played the winner did go almost for sure to the BCS Finals and except last year where TWO SEC teams did play for the title, in all other years, when a SEC team was in the finals, the SEC team won.
So that means, both teams KNOW for shure the stakes are high.
Again, this year the winner will play in the BCS Finals, the teams are ranked #2 and #3 and the winner can only go up, the loser will for sure go down.
So who will win?
I saw some previews, seeing GEORGIA up front, but I can't see Alabama lose here.
They lost only once, against Texas A&M and did also lose once, against South Carolina.
I think it will be a close game, but I pick the Crimson Tide for the winner and to go to the BCS Finals.
Loser will for sure play in a Bowl, but not automatically in a BCS Bowl.
More likley in another Bowl.
(The SEC Champion normally plays in the Sugar Bowl, if not in the BCS Finals, but then only the ranking counts and the amout of teams out of the Conference already selected.
Since the Loser will drop in the rankings it depends on the rankings. Probably the loser will drop behind Florida, which then would play in a BC Bowl.)

#13 Florida State vs Georgia Tech
The ACC Championship game will be a bit boring I think.
FSU is to good to be really challanged by the Yellow Jackets.
I can't see them lose this one, so FSU is may Pick.
The winner will go to the Orange Bowl, the second one will probably play in some other Bowl.
If GT loses, they would be 6-7 and it could happen they do not get an ivitation.

#18 Texas @ #6 Kansas State
This is for KSU the title game, even if it is only a regular season game.
If they lose they will probably not get a share of the Big 12 title and then also not play in the Fiesta Bowl.
I see them here as the winners, Texas is not good enough.

#12 Nebraska vs Wisconsin
The Big Ten Championship game will also be a rematch.
Nebraska did win with 3 points and I'm picking them again to win this.
But this time with much more points difference.
Wisconsin is on a low, dropping 3 out of 4 and Nebraska did win 6 in a row.
The winner will play the PAC 12 Champion in the Rose Bowl.

‘Til next time

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