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College Football Roundup: Week 15
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“If you’re going to slogan around and say One True Champion, and all of a sudden you’re going to go out the back door instead of the front? Don’t say one thing and do another.” —Baylor head coach Art Briles on his conference’s slogan of crowning “one true champion,” which seemingly got passed over this weekend when the Big 12 announced that Baylor and TCU were “co-champions” of the conference. Both teams had one loss, and though Baylor won the head-to-head match-up against TCU earlier this season, the Big 12 presumably said they were “co-champions” because the College Football Playoff committee ranked TCU above Baylor last week.
THINGS TO KNOW
The College Football Playoff Committee’s Votes Are In, and the Big 12 Isn’t Happy
All of the favored teams won in this week’s biggest match-ups, that is, the conference championships of four of college football’s biggest conferences. And the College Football Playoff committee selected every single one of them to play in the four-team playoff at the end of the season. These teams will play in two semi-final games Jan. 1, and the winners of those games will compete for the National Championship on Jan. 12.
Which teams were selected? SEC champion Alabama, Pac-12 champion Oregon, ACC champion Florida State, and Big Ten champion Ohio State. (More info about those games below.)
Wait, I thought there were five major conferences in college football?
Glad you’re paying attention. There are, but the fifth, the Big 12, got left out. Although many sports commentators predicted this might happen, given the fact that the College Football Playoff committee said earlier this season that they would give preference to conference champions (and the Big 12 doesn’t host a conference championship game), the Big 12 isn’t happy about being left out.
What’s the big deal? Didn’t we know that with only four spots, at least one of the power five conferences would be left out?
Yes, but many people thought it was going to be the Big Ten, who started the season playing terribly. But the Big 12’s biggest point of contention is the fact that TCU, a member of the Big 12, was ranked No. 3 by the committee just last week. TCU fell to No. 6 this week even though they beat unranked Iowa State 55-3.
The committee’s response? “Ohio State’s performance in a 13th game gave them a quality win over a highly ranked team that allowed them to move into that fourth spot,” said committee chairman Jeff Long. Baylor finished at No. 5 just one spot ahead of TCU.
LOOK AT IT THIS WAY
How do you make grown men cry?
Take away their football. This week, UAB announced that it would shut down its football program at the end of this season. UAB is the first program in a major college football conference to shut down its football program since 1995. UAB officials said the decision was made because of the rising expense of the school’s football program, which president Ray Watts said “is simply not sustainable.” Players cried after leaving the team meeting during which the shutdown was announced.
Bowl games are out-of-conference, postseason games played at the end of the season. Typically, teams play for cash payouts that benefit the schools and conferences that the teams represent. Teams are said to be “bowl eligible” if they finish with at least six wins, and bowl committees select two teams from the pool of bowl eligible teams to decide who plays in what bowl, with each team playing in a maximum of one bowl game per year. Teams with similar records are often pegged against one another in these games.
Read up: postseason, rivalry weekend, head-to-head, overtime, conference championship, take a knee, shut out, strength of schedule, wildcat, tiebreaker, rushing yards, trap game, pick six, cupcake, conference
GAMES TO WATCH
Oregon (#2) vs. Florida State (#3): ESPN, Thursday, Jan. 1, 5 p.m. EST
Alabama (#1) vs. Ohio State (#4): ESPN, Thursday, Jan. 1, 8:30 p.m. EST
As many bowl games as you can muster
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