Welcome to one of the biggest weekends in college football- RIVALRY WEEK. This week brings us some great matchups that include playoff implications. Let’s dive right in to some of the big-time matchups:
5- USF (9-1) @ #15 UCF (10-0)
It’s the battle of some lesser-known Florida teams. UCF is playing at home trying to remain undefeated. If they can win this week and remain undefeated, do they deserve a playoff spot? The answer is no. One player to watch, however, is Shaquem Griffin, who is the reigning AAC defender of the year. Did I mention he only has one hand? I’m taking UCF to remain undefeated.
4- #8 Notre Dame (9-2) @ #21 Stanford (8-3)
While this game will not have any direct impact on the CFP race, it will have an impact on the Pac-12 championship. If Stanford can pull out a win at home, this will hurt the resumes of teams such as Miami and Georgia, who were able to beat Notre Dame. Stanford can clinch a spot in the Pac-12 championship with a Washington win over Washington State. It will be a close game, but the Irish pull out a close one.
3- #3 Clemson (10-1) @ #24 South Carolina (8-3)
This game will be a big test for Clemson, battling against in-state rival South Carolina. With one loss already to Syracuse, Clemson cannot afford to lose again if they hope to make the playoff. From the outside, there will be a lot of South Carolina fans around the country. Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Auburn are playoff hopeful would all greatly benefit from a Clemson loss. Going to be a tough environment on Saturday, Go Gamecocks!
2- #9 Ohio State (9-2) @ Michigan (8-3)
Huge Big Ten matchup to finish off the season. Michigan, one of the most disappointing teams all season, could crush Ohio State’s slim playoff hopes with a win in the Big House. If Ohio State loses and then goes on to beat Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship, say goodbye to a Big Ten team in the playoff. Ohio State comes out on top in this one.
1- #1 Alabama (11-0) @ #6 Auburn (9-2)
The game everyone has been waiting for- The Iron Bowl. Alabama has taken a lot of heat this year for having a soft schedule, and didn’t look too hot in one of their tougher matchups against Mississippi State a couple weeks ago. Auburn, who is coming in with two losses already, will make the playoffs if they can pull off the win. After two close losses against Clemson and LSU on the road earlier in the season, Auburn blew the doors off top-ranked Georgia and looks to continue that momentum against ‘Bama. I see Auburn winning this one in a close game at home. If Alabama loses, are they out? Would need some assistance from the rest of the country if they can’t get it done come Saturday.