College GameDay: Football conferences playing out the regular season
With two weeks to go, teams across nation still have a lot at stake
11/24/2011 11:25 PM
11/24/2011 11:50 PM
The six conferences that have championship games wrap up their league races today. The five conferences without title games still have two weekends of games remaining. Here is an overview of how all the conference races shape up:
Atlantic Coast: Clemson has clinched the Atlantic Division and will play the Virginia Tech-Virginia winner in the championship game.
Big East: Five teams have two losses: Louisville and Rutgers are 4-2 and end their seasons this weekend. Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and West Virginia are 3-2 with two games remaining each. Louisville can wrap up the conference's BCS bowl berth with a win and losses by Cincinnati and Pitt. Rutgers can take that spot with a win and losses by Louisville and West Virginia.
Big Ten: Legends Division winner Michigan State will face the Penn State-Wisconsin winner in the championship game.
Big 12: Oklahoma State, which is idle this weekend, can clinch the championship if Oklahoma loses to Iowa State on Saturday. Otherwise, the Oklahoma-Oklahoma State winner on Dec. 3 will be the champion, even if Kansas State is part of a three-way tie for first place.
Conference USA: The winner of today's game between Houston and Tulsa will win the West and host the championship game. Southern Miss will win the East if it defeats Memphis. If Southern Miss loses, Marshall would win the division by beating East Carolina.
Mid-American: Ohio has clinched the East. Northern Illinois wins the West if it beats Eastern Michigan. The West is Toledo's if it defeats Ball State and Northern Illinois loses.
Mountain West: TCU has clinched a share of first place and will be the conference's top team.
Pac-12: Oregon takes the North if it defeats Oregon State. If Oregon loses, Stanford wins the North. The North winner will host the championship game. USC leads the South but is ineligible for the championship game and postseason play. UCLA wins the South if it beats USC. If UCLA loses, as many as three teams -- UCLA, Arizona State and Utah -- could win the division.
Southeastern: Georgia has won the East. LSU will win the West if it defeats Arkansas. If Arkansas beats LSU and Alabama loses to Auburn, Arkansas would win the West. Wins by Arkansas and Alabama would put them in a three-way tie with LSU and the tie-breaker would go down to a formula that involves the BCS standings to determine which team would play Georgia.
Sun Belt: Arkansas State leads Louisiana-Lafayette by one game with one game remaining for each team, and Arkansas State holds the tie-breaker advantage.
Western Athletic: Louisiana Tech wins if it defeats New Mexico State in its final game Saturday. For Nevada to win the conference, it must defeat Utah State and Idaho and have Louisiana Tech lose.
One in the books
UT San Antonio concluded its first season with a 4-6 record. The Roadrunners, an independent who will play in the WAC next season, defeated Northeastern State, Bacone, Georgia State and Minot State. They averaged 35,521 fans per game at the Alamodome, an NCAA record for a first-year program. "We're very proud of what we were able to accomplish this year," coach Larry Coker said. "We're a long way away and we know that, but we made some big strides."
UT El Paso visits UCF today. A Miners victory would make them bowl eligible in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2004-05. But... they're 0-16-1 all time in the Eastern time zone.
Virginia is No. 24 in The Associated Press rankings. That's the Cavaliers' first national ranking since 2007.
Southern Cal's win at Oregon last week was the first time a team has defeated the Ducks with only one week of preparation since Chip Kelly became coach of the Ducks in 2009.
If Purdue defeats Indiana, 10 of the Big Ten's 12 teams will be bowl eligible. The conference also had 10 bowl-eligible teams in 2007.
Game of the week
No. 3 Arkansas (10-1, 6-1) at No. 1 LSU (11-0, 7-0)
1:30 p.m. today, KTVT/11, Line: LSU by 12 1/2
Arkansas is LSU's last hurdle before the Southeastern Conference title game. Arkansas has won three of its past four meetings with the Tigers and has scored at least 44 points in three consecutive games, but the Razorbacks have not been impressive in their three road conference games. Other than its 9-6 defeat of Alabama, LSU has won all its games by at least 13 points and no team has stayed within 28 points of the Tigers at Tiger Stadium.
Best of the rest
No. 8 Houston (11-0, 7-0) at Tulsa (8-3, 7-0)
11 a.m. today, FSSW, Line: Houston by 3
The Conference USA West co-leaders play with a berth in the league championship game on the line. Each team has won only one conference game by fewer than 18 points.
No. 19 Penn State (9-2, 6-1) at No. 16 Wisconsin (9-2, 5-2)
2:30 p.m. Saturday, ESPN, Line: Wisconsin by 141/2
Despite all the turmoil on campus the past three weeks, Penn State is one win from playing in the first Big Ten title game. After giving up 70 total points in back-to-back losses to Michigan State and Ohio State, Wisconsin has allowed 47 points during a three-game winning streak.
No. 2 Alabama (10-1, 6-1) at No. 24 Auburn (7-4, 4-3)
2:30 p.m. Saturday, KTVT/11, Line: Alabama by 21
Even if LSU wraps up the SEC West on Friday, the Iron Bowl still carries significant importance in the BCS title-game picture. The winner of this game the past two years went on to win the national championship.
No. 5 Virginia Tech (10-1, 6-1) at Virginia (8-3, 5-2)
2:30 p.m. Saturday, ESPN2, Line: Virginia Tech by 4 1/2
By winning four consecutive games, Virginia has given itself a chance to win the ACC's Coastal Division. A Virginia Tech win gives the Hokies the chance to play for their fourth ACC title in five years.
Washington State (4-7, 2-6) vs. Washington (6-5, 4-4)
6:30 p.m. Saturday, at CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Line: Washington by 9
Washington has lost three in a row -- none close -- and this game is being played at the home of the Seahawks because of renovations at the Huskies' home. Washington State quarterback Connor Halliday is out with a lacerated liver, but replacement Marshall Lobbestael is a senior and can handle the hype of the Apple Cup game.
BCS Top 25 schedule
1. LSU (11-0)
vs. Arkansas, 1:30 p.m. Today
2. Alabama (10-1)
at Auburn, 2:30 p.m. Saturday
3. Arkansas (10-1)
at LSU, 1:30 p.m. Today
4. Oklahoma State (10-1)
5. Virginia Tech (10-1)
at Virginia, 2:30 p.m. Saturday
6. Stanford (10-1)
vs. Notre Dame, 7 p.m. Saturday
7. Boise State (9-1)
vs. Wyoming, 1 p.m. Saturday
8. Houston (11-0)
at Tulsa, 11 a.m. Today
9. Oklahoma (8-2)
vs. Iowa State, 11 a.m. Saturday
10. Oregon (9-2)
vs. Oregon State, 2:30 p.m. Saturday
11. Kansas State (9-2)
12. South Carolina (9-2)
vs. Clemson, 6:45 p.m. Saturday
13. Georgia (9-2)
at Georgia Tech, 11 a.m. Saturday
14. Michigan State (9-2)
at Northwestern, 11 a.m. Saturday
Big Ten Network
15. Michigan (9-2)
vs. Ohio State, 11 a.m. Saturday
16. Wisconsin (9-2)
vs. Penn State, 2:30 p.m. Saturday
17. Clemson (9-2)
at Clemson, 6:45 p.m. Saturday
18. Baylor (7-3)
Texas Tech, 6 p.m. Sat. at Cowboys Stadium
19. Penn State (9-2)
at Wisconsin, 2:30 p.m. Saturday
20. TCU (9-2)
21. Nebraska (8-3)
vs. Iowa, 11 a.m. Today
22. Notre Dame (8-3)
at Stanford, 7 p.m. Saturday
23. Georgia Tech (8-3)
vs. Georgia, 11 a.m. Saturday
24. Auburn (7-4)
vs. Alabama, 2:30 p.m. Saturday
25. Texas (7-4)
Def. Texas A&M 27-25
UNT this week
North Texas, which lost to 31-21 to Western Kentucky last week, is idle. The Mean Green (4-7, 3-4 Sun Belt) ends its season at home on Dec. 3 against Middle Tennessee.
This week's Scripps Howard News Service Heisman Trophy Poll. The poll has correctly predicted the Heisman winner in 20 of its 24 seasons, including last year.
QB Andrew Luck
2,937 yards, 31 passing TDs
QB Robert Griffin III
3,572 yards, 33 passing TDs
RB Trent Richardson
1,380 yards, 20 rushing TDs
QB Case Keenum
4,269 yards, 38 passing TDs
QB Brandon Weeden
4,111 yards, 34 passing TDs
Staff writer Jimmy Burch's ballot: 1. Griffin, 2. Luck, 3. Richardson, 4. Keenum,
5. Kellen Moore, Boise State.
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