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College Football Games To Watch: Week 11

College Football Games

Pitt vs. UCF Opening Play” by elisfkc is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Did you enjoy watching last week’s college football games? Did you see West Virginia’s risky two-point conversion in the final seconds to beat Texas 42-41? How about Michigan continuing their revenge tour with a big win over Penn State (42-7)? How about the dominant performances by Georgia and Alabama, as they are set to go head-to-head in the SEC title game?

What do this week’s college football games have in store for us? We’ll find how real Notre Dame is coming down the stretch of games. Can they keep their playoff hopes alive? How about Central Florida and Ohio State trying to make a final push for a playoff spot? We should also get a better idea of whether or not we’ll see West Virginia versus Oklahoma in the Big 12 title game.

Let’s take a look at the best college football games of Week 11.

 

TOP 25 VS. TOP 25

1 Alabama versus 16 Mississippi State 

Can anyone beat Alabama? That’s been the biggest question all season long. It’s been even more of a question over the last week after they handled LSU in a 29-0 shutout. LSU struggled to move the ball on offense, which forced the defense to play more snaps and Alabama to take advantage. Will Mississippi State give Alabama a run for their money? Mississippi State was projected to be a better team this year than they are. We’ve seen flares of greatness this season, but can they do the unthinkable?

I believe Alabama is vulnerable despite being 9-0 and having dominated the SEC again this year. I say that because we finally got to see QB Tua Tagovailoa throw his first interception of the season against LSU. That’s possibly the only good thing LSU did all game. With that interception, teams now know Tua is not invincible. Be prepared to see a lot more pressure on Tua as the season winds down.

2 Clemson versus 17 Boston College

Clemson has finally gotten back to where we all thought they’d be. We will see them in the ACC title game again for the fourth straight year. This could also be the fourth straight year they play Alabama in the playoff. But first, Clemson will have to finish taking care of business in the ACC, making sure they don’t get upset like they’ve been over the past two seasons.

For Boston College, it’s about getting a big win in the ACC to help them get a better bowl selection. They won’t be able to make playoff or represent in the ACC title game, but knocking Clemson from the undefeated ranks will help give them a good boat of confidence as the season wraps up. Will Clemson continue their dominance, or does Boston College take advantage?

10 Ohio State versus 18 Michigan State

Ohio State’s big loss to Purdue has continued leaving them out of the playoff picture, but with a big win over Michigan State, their chances will once again increase. They have to play a lot better if they want to do that. Their slim win against last place Nebraska rises a lot of questions for the Buckeyes and Urban Meyer. This game should help them bounce back and look forward to the showdown with their biggest rival, Michigan.

Michigan State will not be able to compete for the Big Ten title because of their loss to Michigan, but they can position themselves for a better bowl game with a big win over over Ohio State.

6 Georgia versus 24 Auburn

Georgia took care of Kentucky last week to clinch their second straight SEC East title. That gives them a date with Alabama in the SEC title game. For Georgia, all games are must wins. If they want to make it back into the playoff, winning is what they’ll need to do.

After starting off with an easy schedule, Georgia has finally been challenged. They lost their first real challenge to LSU, but have since turned back to their dominant ways.  This game against Auburn will be the Bulldogs’ fourth straight ranked opponent. They’ll be looking to start their preparation for the Crimson Tide on December 1st.

 

BOUNCE BACK GAMES

19 Texas versus Texas Tech 

Texas lost late to West Virginia after the risky two-point conversion attempt worked for the Mountaineers. With that loss, Texas’ chances of winning the Big 12, or at least being in the title game are very slim. They would need both Oklahoma and West Virginia to lose another game. That could happen, seeing as they both still have to play each other.

But Texas’ attention has now turned to the in-state rival, Texas Tech, who is more than capable of beating the Long Horns. Both teams are searching for another big win as they finish the season and head into their bowl games.

 21 Iowa versus Northwestern

Iowa was a favorite to win the Big Ten West just two weeks ago. That was before they lost back-to-back games against conference opponents, Penn State and Purdue. I will share more about Penn State in the next pair of games, but Purdue has beaten Iowa and Ohio State and may be able to win the Big Ten West now.

Iowa also still has a very slim chance, but it will be very hard to imagine Northwestern losing the rest of their conference games. That is what it’s going to take for Iowa to represent the West. Iowa is currently fourth in the West and has already lost to Wisconsin and Purdue, who are third and second in the standings. This game is very important for Iowa’s chances.

Northwestern has been a surprising team in the Big Ten, and could be the West champ this year. They’ve already beaten Michigan State (29-19), Wisconsin (31-17) and Purdue (31-27). With a win over Iowa, it will practically be the final game of importance for Northwestern. They’re still out to prove they belong with the big boys in the Big Ten.  Imagine them winning and getting a rematch with Michigan, who they lost to earlier in the season after a very competitive game (20-17).

20 Penn State versus Wisconsin

Penn State is really missing Saquon Barkley this year. They’ve now lost their third conference game after Michigan beat them. Their chances of being in the title game were over after their second loss to Michigan State.

For Wisconsin, it all leads back to the game against BYU when they lost their first game. Wisconsin was never the same team after that loss. They were able to beat Iowa, but have losses to Northwestern and Michigan. They still have a very slim chance to win the West, but they need a lot of other things to happen too.

First, would be a win over Penn State, followed by losses by Purdue and Northwestern. However, if Northwestern wins, Wisconsin’s chances are pretty much done.

 

GAMES OF INTEREST

3 Notre Dame versus Florida State

Now this is where things get very interesting. In Fourth Quarter Sports’ Buy or Sell this week, we spoke about whether or not Florida State will make another bowl game and continue their streak of 36 years. Or will it be over this season?

For Florida State to have a chance, they need to win at least one more game. I would love it to be this week against Notre Dame. Every week Notre Dame is looking more and more vulnerable. This week they’ll be without QB Ian Book and will go back to Brandon Wimbush at quarterback. That change at QB may be the difference maker in this game.

7 Oklahoma versus Oklahoma State

Oklahoma took care of Texas Tech in a shoot out and are now looking ahead to the conference title game. Despite their one loss against Texas, Oklahoma has been a powerful offensive team who can’t be stopped. This week they look to continue their winning in pursuit of another Big 12 title, which should happen as long as they take care of Oklahoma State and West Virginia.

12 Central Florida versus Navy

Oh UC….. F! Despite still being undefeated, Central Florida continues to fall in the rankings. That’s why I put them on this list almost every week. The game against Navy shouldn’t be much of a challenge for Central Florida, but they want to be in the playoff picture. This should be a statement for them. Let’s see what happens and how high the committee decides to raise them.

8 Washington State versus Colorado 

The PAC-12 is in the control of Washington State, with only one loss on the season. They’ve beaten Stanford and Oregon to take control of the PAC-12 North, and will likely remain in control as long as they continue to win. Colorado is one of those teams who started strong, but has since fallen down and are looking to keep their hopes of a bowl game alive. With Phillip Lindsay on bye in the NFL this week, maybe he can return and play some snaps for his former team in Colorado!

9 West Virginia versus TCU

West Virginia’s two-point conversion attempt that won them the game last week against Texas has put them in the driver seat of the Big-12 conference. They would like to remain there and hopefully knock off Oklahoma from the conference title again.

TCU is looking to play spoiler for West Virginia. Despite their mid-season struggles, they may very well be able to pull it off. Stopping Will Grier will be the biggest challenge in this game. He is playing on another level right now. Let’s see what tricks TCU has up their sleeves to stop the Mountaineers from climbing to the top.

 

Until then, we’ll be watching and waiting to see if this week’s college football games hold any upsets. Can Alabama, Clemson and Central Florida continue to stay undefeated? How about Notre Dame? Or Ohio State? How will they finish the weekend? Tune in Saturday to find out what your favorite college football team does and how these college football games play out!

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