|November 16, 2017|
After several weeks of wild and unexpected results, week 12 brings a bit of calm to the college football world. There is only one matchup of ranked opponents on the docket this week, No. 24 Michigan at No. 5 Wisconsin, but that doesn't mean there couldn't be additional chaos.
Every season of college football is filled with "what-if" scenarios, but this year it felt like those questions were even more prevalent. From the moment the College Football Playoff rankings were released, fans and talking heads were looking down the road and offering scenarios of who would be left out of the CFP when it is all said and done.
But, as we all should know, college football has a way of figuring itself out. The fears of Notre Dame crashing the CFP party and taking a coveted spot from another conference were mitigated when the Irish fell to Miami. The worries of an undefeated Georgia taking on an undefeated Alabama in the SEC Championship were squashed when the Bulldogs lost to Auburn.
And now, we have an even clearer picture of the future as many teams have clinched spots into their respective conference title games. The ACC is set with No. 2 Clemson and No. 3 Miami, which will effectively bump one of the two teams out of the top-four. Georgia, despite its loss to Auburn, has wrapped up the SEC East. Wisconsin, after beating Iowa last week, won the Big Ten West, while USC has already captured the Pac-12 South title.
The SEC West will be decided in week 13 when Alabama takes on Auburn in the Iron Bowl. The Pac-12 North will likely come down to the Apple Cup between Washington and Washington State. Ohio State has control of the Big Ten East, but "The Game" against Michigan looms on November 25 and could upset the apple cart in the East.
So while on the conference level, several items have been determined, there is still a lot of football left to be played in terms of the College Football Playoff. Let's take a look at the games that will lead us into the weekend:
Thursday, November 16
Buffalo at Ball State, 4 pm, CBSSN
Tulsa at South Florida, 4:30 pm, ESPN
Friday, November 17
Middle Tennessee at Western Kentucky, 5 pm, CBSSN
UNLV at New Mexico, 6:30 pm, ESPN2
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