Well, it’s finally here.
Outside of the Army-Navy game next Saturday, Week 15 serves as the final weekend of the 2013 “regular” season. Despite the fact that 14 weeks are already in the books, though, there are still several critical questions that remain unanswered.
Can Ohio State run its winning streak to 25 straight and claim a spot in its first BCS title game since after the 2007 season? Would a one-loss and SEC champion Auburn do the unprecedented and leapfrog an unbeaten AQ team into the championship game? Will Missouri and/or Michigan State make the argument that dominated the week leading into Championship Saturday a moot point? Can Florida State avoid tripping up against Du… sorry, couldn’t finish typing that with a straight face.
The ACC, Big Ten and SEC championship games aren’t the only ones of import this weekend, though, as the Big 12 and Pac-12 will also send a team apiece into the BCS with automatic bids:
- If Oklahoma State can defend its home Stillwater turf and beat Oklahoma in Bedlam, the Cowboys claim the Big 12 championship and the automatic BCS berth. If not, the winner of the Texas-Baylor game — in Waco — will earn the conference’s postseason honors.
- The Pac-12, as it relates to the BCS, is simple and straightforward: the winner of the Stanford-Arizona State conference championship game in the desert will play in the Rose Bowl against either the Big Ten champion or an at-large team.
Of course, a handful of other games litter the Week 15 schedule — MWC (Utah State-Fresno State) and Conference USA (Marshall at Rice) league championship games as well as regular-season finales in the AAC and Sun Belt — although most eyes will be on the games mentioned above.
So, how will the weekend play out? How will the questions posed earlier be answered? Allow the CFT staff to peer into their respective, sometimes cloudy crystal balls and take a stab at just that.
AUBURN (11-1, No. 3 BCS) vs.MISSOURI (11-1, No. 5 BCS)
SEC Championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Ga. 4 p.m. ET kickoff
Chris Huston: Auburn 42, Missouri 35
Kevin McGuire: Auburn 34, Missouri 32
JJ Stankevitz: Missouri 38, Auburn 34
John Taylor: Missouri 41, Auburn 34
OHIO STATE (12-0, No. 2 BCS) vs. MICHIGAN STATE (11-1, No. 10)
Big Ten Championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind. 8:17 p.m. ET kickoff
Chris Huston: Ohio State 27, Michigan State 10
Kevin McGuire: Ohio State 24, Michigan State 20
JJ Stankevitz: Michigan State 27, Ohio State 24
John Taylor: Ohio State 37, Michigan State 24
Ohio State, 3-1
FLORIDA STATE (12-0, No. 1) vs DUKE (10-2, No. 20)
ACC Championship game at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, NC. 8 p.m. ET kickoff
Chris Huston: Florida State 51, Duke 24
Kevin McGuire: Florida State 42, Duke 17
JJ Stankevitz: Florida State 59, Duke 10
John Taylor: Florida State 54, Duke 10
Florida State, 4-0
STANFORD (10-2, No. 7) vs. ARIZONA STATE (10-2, No. 11)
Pac-12 Championship game at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Ariz. 7:45 p.m. ET kickoff
Chris Huston: Arizona State 31, Stanford 28
Kevin McGuire: Arizona State 30, Stanford 26
JJ Stankevitz: Stanford 30, Arizona State 21
John Taylor: Stanford 34, Arizona State 31
Arizona State/Stanford, 2-2
OKLAHOMA (9-2, No. 17) vs. OKLAHOMA STATE (10-1, No. 6)
Chris Huston: Oklahoma 38, Oklahoma State 35
Kevin McGuire: Oklahoma State 38, Oklahoma 28
JJ Stankevitz: Oklahoma State 41, Oklahoma 27
John Taylor: Oklahoma State 34, Oklahoma 17
Oklahoma State, 3-1
TEXAS (8-3, No. 25) vs. BAYLOR (10-1, No. 9)
Chris Huston: Baylor 48, Texas 41
Kevin McGuire: Baylor 43, Texas 27
JJ Stankevitz: Baylor 56, Texas 38
John Taylor: Baylor 52, Texas 24