Last week was a bloodbath for ranked college football teams as 11 lost their matchups.
Teams like Texas (a game we warned about) and Florida saw their playoff dreams extinguished.
Georgia and Washington State saw their title odds improve, although both have tough tasks this week.
SEC title game spots are up for grabs on Saturday as there are some massive matchups.
Looking into the futures…
No game is bigger than Alabama (#1, -210 at FanDuel Sportsbook to win National Championship) vs. LSU (#4, +2900). Alabama opened as a two-touchdown favorite at LSU, making this the most points the Tigers have been an underdog at home since 1997. At stake is a spot as the SEC West representative in the real National Title SEC Championship game. A loss would set Alabama up in a similar position as last year, where they’d still likely make the playoffs despite not participating in the SEC title game. A win by LSU would certainly improve their +2000 and set up a rematch with most likely Georgia for the SEC crown.
If this sounds somewhat familiar, it is. That’s exactly what happened last year. Auburn beat both Georgia and Alabama in the regular season, but lost to Georgia in the SEC title game and Alabama slipped into the playoffs. LSU is simply this year’s Auburn. An LSU win would surely see their +2000 improve, potentially to a +1000.
Speaking of Georgia (#6, +1600), the Bulldogs face off against the surprising Kentucky Wildcats (#10, +10000) for the right to be the SEC East rep against the winner of ‘Bama vs. LSU. Georgia is a 9.5 favorite on the road against Kentucky, and FiveThirtyEight gives the Dawgs a 71% shot at winning. Some of Georgia’s futures improvement will hinge on if LSU can pull off the upset against ‘Bama. Vegas will surely like Georgia’s title chances more if it has to go through LSU for the SEC title as opposed to Alabama.
Michigan (#5, +1600) has two more big hurdles to clear to have a shot at the playoffs, the first being this weekend at home against Penn State (#14, +10000). While a win won’t improve Michigan’s futures much (their match-up against #8 Ohio State carries too much weight), a loss all but submarines Michigan’s title odds.
One last match-up worth paying attention to is Washington State (#10, +10000) vs. Cal. Washington St. is the PAC-12’s only hope for playoff consideration, and Cal is no joke even as a 10.5-point dog. Expect Washington St’s futures to tick upward with a win.