22 Utah at #17 Arizona
2:30PM Kickoff on PAC12 (11/18)
Utah: 7-3 (4-3 Pac-12)
Arizona: 7-3 (5-2 Pac-12)
It’s shame this in on the PAC12 Network, because this is an exciting match between two 7-3 teams, one holding steady after a ton of injuries derailed a “what could have been season (Utah), while the other is having its best season in 6 years and hoping to build upon it when they jump to the Big-12 (Arizona). Both teams have 3 losses, Utah’s are all to ranked teams (Oregon State, Oregon, and Washington), while Arizona’s has two ranked losses and one non-ranked BUT all three losses were by less than 1 score (two were in overtime). I have said this the last couple weeks, I firmly believe Arizona is the best 3 loss team in the country (sorry LSU) and Utah will be able to keep pace with the Noah Fifita led offense for a bit, but the injuries continue to old them back. Arizona wins and Utah is still left wondering “What if this team was fully healthy?”.
UNLV at Air Force
3:30PM Kickoff on CBSSN (11/18)
UNLV: 8-2 (5-1 MW)
Air Force: 8-2 (5-1 MW)
I love me some fun Group of 5 matchups with huge championship game implications, plus both of these teams have fun offenses. UNLV is having their best season in at least 20 years, using the “GO GO GO” Offense they are able to move the ball quickly and have a dynamic passing and rushing attack based off quick plays. On the flip side you have Air Force which is one of three teams in the FBS level: Air Force, Army, and Navy (seeing a pattern I hope), that still run the triple option offense, and they run it super well (averaging a whopping 275.9 rushing Yds a game). UNLV needs to win their last two games of the season to clinch a spot in the MW Championship game (a loss to Fresno State could keep the out if they slip up), Air Force could drop one of their final two and still make it it, but it really is do or die for both programs. MY gut is leaning towards UNLV in this game, but don’t be shocked to see Air Force run the ball all over the Rebels.
New Mexico State at Auburn
4:00PM Kickoff on SECN (11/18)
NMSU: 8-3 (6-1 C-USA)
Auburn: 6-4 (3-4 SEC)
Do I really think New Mexico State is going to win this game? No, but I can’t look past how they are having probably their best season in program history. Their best season since 1965, back to back winning seasons, clinching a spot in the Conference USA Championship game in their first season in the conference, Jerry Kill deserves coach of the year awards. Auburn is in year 1 of the Hugh Freeze era, 3-4 in the SEC is not awful, he had his team almost take down Georgia a few weeks ago. The Iron Bowl is looming for the Tigers, and a chance to knock Alabama out of the playoff picture. I think NMSU might make this game a little closer than people think to start off, Auburn will get caught looking a head, but come the second half Auburn will pull away. Auburn wins.
5 Washington at #11 Oregon State
7:30PM Kickoff on ABC (11/18)
Washington: 10-0 (7-0 Pac-12)
Washington: 8-2 (5-2 Pac-12)
What will it take for Washington to finally break into the CFP Top 4? A win over #11 Oregon State would almost guarantee them to jump Florida State in next weeks polls, but the Beavers will not go down without a fight. Oregon State is surprisingly the favorite in this game (2.5 Pt favorite at the time of writing this), that just shows how Vegas feels about Washington as of late, coasting through games/being in tight ones with teams they should be blowing out of the water with such a high-powered offense led a by the Heisman frontrunner (Penix Jr.), this Husky team might be looking wayyyy ahead to a potential rematch against a VERY scary Oregon team firing on all cylinders. But Washington isn’t playing Oregon this week they are playing Oregon’s rival Oregon State (Oregon and Oregon State play next week). Oregon State is in a position where if they win out they are in the Pac-12 Championship game, they would knock their rival Oregon out having the tie-breaker over them and would most likely have a rematch with Washington. The numbers say Oregon State wins this game, but I am truly 50/50 on this, I flipped a coin before writing this and I am going with Oregon State with the upset.