Tuesday, October 10, 2017

TCU one game away from bowl eligibility.

The Big 12 chances of having a representative in the 2017 College Football Playoff took a huge hit when Iowa State upset Oklahoma in Week Six. Not only has Jerry Palm downgraded Oklahoma in the CFP, but had downgraded the Sooners out the New Year Six bowls altogether.

The Sooners loss leaves TCU as the best candidate for a CFP appearance. The Sooners and Horned Frogs are the only teams in the Big 12 conference currently with five wins. Three teams have four wins, and four teams have three wins. Kansas and Baylor are the only teams currently with losing records.

Here is where the eight Big 12 schools still in the hunt for bowl eligibility currently stand. Bowl projections unless otherwise noted, are via CBS Sports' Jerry Palm.

Five wins (Magic number: 1)

TCU (5-0, conference 2-0)

Barring a massive collapse, TCU should be able to get the necessary sixth win to become bowl eligible sometime in October. The hardest challenge comes on October 14, when TCU travels to Manhattan, Ks. to face Kansas State. The Horned Frogs host Kansas on Oct. 21, then travel to Iowa St. on Oct. 28.

The bigger challenge for TCU? Proving to skeptics that it can earn a spot in the College Football Playoffs semi-finals. That will most likely require the Horned Frogs going unbeaten, and having a few of the current CFP contenders suffer an upset or two.

Projected bowl:

2017 Alamo Bowl (Dec. 28, San Antonio, Tx.)

Projected opponent:

Washington State

Jerry Palm seems to have zero faith at the moment in TCU making it to either the CFP or the New Years Six bowls. There is a fair chance a one-loss Big Ten or Pac-12 team would jump a one-loss TCU in the College Football Playoff Committee final rankings.

Four wins (Magic number: 2)

Oklahoma State (4-1, conference 1-1)

TCU was responsible for Oklahoma State's only loss so far in the 2017 college football season. The Cowboys need two more wins, and n could get one of them when they host Baylor on Oct 14. The challenges get bigger as OK State travels to Austin to face Texas on Oct. 21, and then to Morgantown to face West Virginia on Oct. 28. Bedlam follows as OK State hosts Oklahoma on Nov. 4.

Projected Bowl:

2018 Peach Bowl (Jan 1, 2018, Atlanta, Ga.)

Projected opponent:


Oklahoma (4-1, conference 1-1)

Oklahoma possibly lost more than just a game to Iowa State in Week 6. The loss may have cost the Sooners a spot in the CFB semifinals. Getting that spot back will require being near perfect during the rest of its season.

Between the Sooners and getting back on track in October is a Kansas St. team sandwiched between  two of the Big 12 teams from Texas. The Red River Shootout against Texas inside the Cotton Bowl Stadium comes on Oct. 14. Kansas St. hosts the Sooners on Oct. 21. The Sooners host Texas Tech on Nov. 14. As stated above, Oklahoma travels to Oklahoma St. for Bedlam on Nov. 4

Projected Bowl: 

2017 Camping World Bowl (Dec. 28. Orlando, Fl.)

Projected opponent:

Virginia Tech

Is facing Va. Tech in a bowl a good substitute for missing out on a CFP appearance? It might be less than Oklahoma wanted, but if it happens, it could make for a good game.

Texas Tech (4-1, conference 1-1)

At this point last season (between Weeks Six and Seven) , Texas Tech was 3-3. It went on to a 5-7 record. The Red Raiders are 3-2 now, and could use some quality wins in the coming three weeks.
Texas Tech travels to West Virginia on Oct. 14, hosts Iowa State on Oct. 21, then travels to Oklahoma on Oct. 28.

Projected bowl: 

2017 Liberty Bowl (Dec. 30, Memphis, Tn.)

Projected opponent:


Texas Tech vs. Kentucky is not the sexiest matchup, but could have its moments.

Three wins (Magic number: 3)

Texas (3-2, conference 2-0)

Texas has a chance to crush Oklahoma's CFB chances for good this weekend in the Red River Shootout. That's followed up with hosting Oklahoma State on Oct. 21. A road trip to Baylor ends the month.

Texas' chance to go 3-0 for the next three games? Give it a 60% of happening.

Projected bowl:

2017 Cactus Bowl (Dec 26, Tempe Az.)

Projected opponent:


Fun game: How many former Big 12 schools will Texas face before it faces Texas A&M again?

Kansas State (3-2, conference 1-1)

Kansas State has a chance to play spoiler on a major level oner the next two games. TCU comes to Manhattan on Oct. 14, followed on Oct. 21 by Oklahoma. The Wildcats finish the month visiting in-state rival Kansas On Oct. 28.

Projected bowl: 

2017 Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dec. 26, Dallas, Tx.)

Projected opponent: 


In your heart, you know BYU should be a Big 12 school.

West Virginia (3-2, conference 1-1)

West Virginia's next three games should provide the Mountaineers at least two places that could increase their win record. Texas Tech faces West Virginia Oct. 14., followed by a road trip to Baylor on Oct. 21. The Mountaineers return to Morgantown to face Oklahoma St. on Oct. 28.

Projected bowl: 

2017 Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dec. 27, Dallas, Tx.)

Projected opponent:

Texas A&M

This just doesn't sound like it's going to be anything but an ugly game.

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