The College Football Preview, Week 14: All These Bowls Are Making Us Groggy

The college football regular season ends this weekend. And all I can say is it’s about time. I mean, we’re looking at a BCS Championship Game of Missouri versus West Virginia.

Yawn.

There are two really important games this weekend, and they’re both going on at the same time on Saturday night. Starting at 6:45, ESPN will be televising Pittsburgh at West Virginia. And at 7:00, ABC will have Missouri versus Oklahoma. If West Virginia and Missouri win, that sets the BCS title game. If they lose, then it’s more of the standard chaos that has so dominated this season.

No matter what happens, there is probably no way Georgia or Kansas, among two of the top-ranked BCS teams, will advance to the title game, primarily because neither one is a conference champion.

Missouri, which is currently the number one BCS team, is actually an underdog in its game to Oklahoma. This is based on the fact that on October 13, these two teams played and Oklahoma won the game.

An Oklahoma victory means several things. First, Ohio State probably advances, once again, to the BCS title game. This also means that the Big 12 will probably have two BCS Bowl eligible teams, which shakes up the bowl picture and probably leaves the Texas Bowl with TCU facing the University of Houston, instead of Big 12 team.

If West Virginia loses as well, which it shouldn’t since it’s playing 4-7 Pittsburgh, then another team, along with Ohio State, moves up to the title game. The other teams, along with Ohio State, waiting for a Missouri and West Virginia collapse are LSU and Virginia Tech. Of course, they both also have to win this weekend.

LSU will be taking on Tennessee in the SEC title game, and Virginia Tech will be taking on Boston College. And if those two teams should tank, USC probably pops into the picture.

USC will be taking on UCLA. A USC win clinches a sure appearance in the Rose Bowl. But it’s possible that, if UCLA wins, UCLA, with 7 wins, could advance to the Rose Bowl – UCLA would need to not only win, but would also need an Arizona State defeat. If UCLA beats USC, and if Arizona State wins, then it’s Arizona State in the Rose Bowl.

But forget those games. There are two other games which are more interesting this weekend. Hawaii is taking on Washington. If Hawaii wins, it clinches a BCS Bowl Game and the chance to be the next Boise State. And you should also check out Army vs. Navy. Sure, Army stinks and Navy is bowl bound, but this game is always worth it because of the pageantry involved in the two military academies playing against each other. And if you have any interest, I suggest you read John Feinstein’s A Civil War, which is an excellent account of the Army/Navy series.

So, here’s to bowl season. – John Royal


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