Games that Matter: Rooting Guide for Week 12

We’ve spent so much time this week ruminating on the loss to TCU, Mr. Badger is afraid we may have lost sight of what’s most important right now: San Diego State.

He says he wants us to focus, focus, focus on our future. Because yesterday is gone. But tomorrow is always something to look forward to. He says our Boys in Blue need our support now more than ever. As soon as he gets done with his nap, that is.


Join me and Mr. Badger after the jump for a rundown of this week’s games to watch.

There are a few categories of games to watch:


The better our opponents fare, the better we look.

Ranked Non-AQ Conference (Likely) Champions (Houston, Southern Miss, TCU)

Although a long shot, winning the non-AQ automatic bid is still a mathematical possibility.

Ranked AQs from ACC, PAC-12, Big 10 (Clemson, VaTech, Stanford, Oregon, Mich St, Mich, Wisconsin, Nebraska)

The Badger is betting his den that the Fiesta Bowl will select the "Highest Ranked Team" (AQ or not) to fill its at-

large spot. Right, Fiesta Bowl?

The games are put in order of Time, with the best games first within each time slot.

Keep in mind these BCS rules…

  1. The BCS can only select at-large bids from the Top14.
  2. The BCS cannot select more than 2 teams from a conference.
  3. That makes the following teams uber-important:
  • Stanford
  • Clemson
  • VaTech
  • 2nd place Big10 team

The resulting "Best Guess" Bowl Chart will look something like this...


Let's get started then!

Fri 5PM

*** 3 Stars ***

West Virginia (7-3, 3-2 Big East) vs Pitt (5-5, 3-2 Big East) ESPN

Root for: West Virginia

If West Virginia can jump TCU and Houston, and keep TCU and Houston ranked lower than 12th, it would take away TCU and Houston’s auto-bid spot, opening up another at-large spot. Highly unlikely? Yes. Possible? Probably not, but who cares. That’s what makes this such fun! Most likely scenario… West Virginia ends up ranked 16, while TCU and Houston are 17 or lower.

Friday 6PM

**** 4 Stars ****

(2) Oklahoma State (10-0, 7-0 Big 12) at Iowa State (5-4, 2-4 Big 12) ESPN

Root for: Oklahoma State

Keeping Oregon out of the NCG will prevent Stanford from potentially grabbing a Rose Bowl bid (even if Stanford is ranked below us), which would mean one less at-large bid.


*** 3 Stars ***

(14) Georgia (8-2, 6-1 SEC) vs Kentucky (4-6, 1-5 SEC) SEC Network / ESPN3

Root for: Georgia

The more SEC teams clog up the Top 14, the more at-large bids there will be. Go Dawgs!

*** 3 Stars ***

(15) Michigan State (8-2, 5-1 Big10) vs Indiana (1-9, 0-6 Big10) Big Ten Network

Root for: Michigan State

The Big Ten is a mess. There are so many possible scenarios and so many resulting impacts to the Top 16teams, that for now… the only thing we know for sure is we want Michigan State to win the Big 10 title.

We play them next year, and we’d prefer they take the Big Ten title. Plus, some Big Ten team has to take the title. Might as well be our friend Sparty.

** 1 Star **

(12) South Carolina (8-2) vs Citadel (4-6) ESPN3

Root for: South Carolina

Should be a cake walk for the Gamecocks.


***** 5 Stars *****

(11) Houston (10-0, 6-0 C-USA) vs SMU (6-4, 4-2 C-USA)

Root for: SMU

For simplicity sake, let’s hope Houston loses at least one game the rest of the way. The good news: this would knock them out of the Top 14. The bad news: they might fall below TCU, which is flirting with that precarious #16 spot. Best case: Houston loses, but both TCU and Houston are jumped by West Virginia. Is this possible? Probably not, but you never know…

**** 4 Stars ****

(7) Clemson (9-1, 6-1 ACC) at NC State (5-5, 2-4 ACC) ESPN / ABC

Root for: NC State

After keeping their wits about them in the "trap" game against Wake last week, look for Clemson to return to its dominating form. Root against them though. A loss knocks them below our Broncos, and might keep them out of a BCS bid altogether. Go Pack!

*** 3 Stars ***

(6) Arkansas (9-1, 5-1 SEC) vs Mississippi State (5-5, 1-5 SEC) CBS

Root for: Arkansas

The more SEC teams that "clog" the Top 14, the better. A number 6 ranking for Arkansas??? Woo Pig Sooie!



***** 5 Stars *****

(10) Boise State (8-1, 3-1 MWC) at San Diego State (6-3, 3-2 MWC)

Root for: The Good Guys

Watch out for Ryan Lindley and Ronnie Hillman, a dynamic duo in the MWC. Hillman’s hurt, but says he’ll be playing no matter what. Expect him on the field. Expect a battle in front of 55,000 fans. With the Chargers out of it, the San Diego sports community is jacked for this one. Go Broncos!


***** 5 Stars *****

(4) Oregon (9-1, 7-0 PAC-12) vs USC (8-2, 5-2 PAC-12) ESPN
Root for: USC

Knocking Oregon out of contention in the PAC-12 would be just as good as knocking Stanford out of contention. A loss by either team would put them below our Broncos. Go Trojans!

***** 5 Stars *****

(8) VaTech (9-1, 5-1 ACC) vs North Carolina (6-4, 2-4 ACC) ESPN

Root for: Carolina

While Bronco Nation usually roots for our Hokie friends, this past week has thrown everything up in the air. A loss by VaTech would vault us above them in the rankings, and may keep them out of the BCS altogether. Go Heels!

***** 5 Stars *****

(13) Kansas State (8-2, 5-2 Big 12) at 23 Texas (6-3, 3-3 Big 12) FX

Root for: Kansas State

Keeping more Big-12 teams in the Top 14 will help open up more at-large bids. Go Wildcats!

**** 4 Stars ****

(5) Oklahoma (8-1, 5-1 Big 12) at 22 Baylor (6-3, 3-3 Big 12) ABC

Root for: Sooners

Remember, our focus is twofold: keeping Oregon out of the NCG, and maximizing the number of SEC and Big 12 teams in the Top 14.

A win by Baylor would almost certainly propel them past TCU, which is on the precipice of the Top 16. However, they’d still have to get by Texas Tech and Texas. A risky proposition at best. A safer bet: keep Oklahoma and Okie State in the Top 14, with the winner of their final game earning a trip to the NCG against some SEC team.


***** 5 Stars *****


(9) Stanford (9-1, 7-1 PAC-12) vs Cal (6-4, 3-4 PAC-12) ESPN

Root for: Cal

Stanford is our primary obstacle. If they lose one of their final two games, they will slip below us in the ratings – enabling us to take the coveted Fiesta Bowl spot. Go Bears!

That’s all for this week. Happy watching!

This content was not created by OBNUG and therefore may not meet our standards. On the contrary, it probably exceeds them.

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