• No. 5 Washington-No. 11 Oregon State: The undefeated Huskies are underdogs for the primary time this season as they journey to Corvallis.
• No. 1 Georgia-No. 18 Tennessee: The defending back-to-back champs will attempt to beat their third top-25 opponent in as many weeks.
• No. 22 Utah-No. 17 Arizona: The Wildcats want to maintain their scorching streak alive at residence towards the Utes.
Estimated Studying Time: 8 minutes
Solely two weeks stay within the 2023 faculty football common season, and the pool of Faculty Football Playoff contenders has been whittled all the way down to primarily 9.
4 of these contenders are embroiled in large matchups this week that ought to present an excellent clearer image of what the ultimate 4 might appear like. Listed below are the storylines to know, matchups to observe and predictions for the six greatest video games of Week 12.
NO. 10 LOUISVILLE CARDINALS AT MIAMI (FL) HURRICANES (12 P.M. EST ON ABC)
Storyline to know: Can Louisville clinch a spot within the ACC Championship sport?
Louisville has been faculty football’s Cinderella story this season. After beginning the season unranked, the Cardinals now place tenth with a 9-1 report in Jeff Brohm’s first 12 months on the helm.
With a win Saturday, Louisville will clinch a spot within the ACC Championship sport for the primary time in program historical past. A victory can even maintain the Cardinals’ playoff possibilities, albeit slim, alive. It gained’t come straightforward, although, as Louisville is simply one-point favorites on the street towards a Miami (FL) staff that simply went down toe to toe with No. 4 Florida State.
Matchup to observe: How does Tyler Van Dyke reply to being benched?
Miami quarterback Tyler Van Dyke was exhibiting within the first half of the season why he was as soon as a projected first-round choose. Nevertheless, he’s taken a whole nosedive prior to now three weeks.
Tyler Van Dyke in 2023 | Amongst FBS QBs
|Span||Passing Grade||Huge-Time Throw Price||Turnover-Worthy Play Price|
|Weeks 0-7||91.2 (third)||8.7% (sixth)||2.4% (thirty third)|
|Weeks 8-11||46.5 (a hundred and thirtieth)||2.6% (104th)||9.9% (136th)|
It culminated in his benching this previous weekend towards Florida State in favor of true freshman Emory Williams. However with Williams struggling a season-ending arm harm, Van Dyke is again within the lineup. Louisville isn’t precisely a very good “get-right” staff to face, both. The Cardinals rank sixth within the nation in anticipated factors allowed per play this season.
Prediction: Louisville 27, Miami (FL) 23
Louisville takes down Miami on the street and clinches a spot within the ACC title sport for the primary time, establishing a matchup with Florida State.
NO. 22 UTAH UTES AT NO. 17 ARIZONA WILDCATS (2:30 P.M. EST ON PAC-12 NETWORK)
Storyline to know: Can Arizona maintain this scorching streak going?
Arizona has been on hearth as of late, successful 4 straight video games, together with three over ranked opponents — No. 19 Washington State, No. 11 Oregon State and No. 19 UCLA. Within the two weeks earlier than that, the Wildcats misplaced to No. 7 Washington and No. 9 USC by a mixed 9 factors.
They’ll attempt to maintain the great occasions rolling towards a Utah staff that has misplaced two of its previous three. Granted, these defeats got here by the hands of Faculty Football Playoff contenders in Oregon and Washington.
Matchup to observe: Jonah Elliss towards Jordan Morgan
Elliss has been a one-man wrecking crew for the Utes, as his 13 sacks tempo all Energy 5 edge defenders this season. After beginning the marketing campaign as a relative unknown, he’s now a top-50 prospect on PFF’s 2024 NFL Draft large board.
One other top-50 prospect is Arizona left deal with Jordan Morgan, who will probably be matching up with Elliss for many of this sport. His 82.6 general grade and 89.4 pass-blocking grade each rank fifth amongst all FBS tackles.
This can be a must-see one-on-one matchup this weekend, particularly for individuals who are followers of the NFL draft.
Prediction: Arizona 24, Utah 21
The Wildcats beat their fourth top-25 opponent of their previous 5 video games.
NO. 1 GEORGIA BULLDOGS AT NO. 18 TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS (3:30 P.M. EST ON CBS)
Storyline to know: Can Georgia get by this brutal stretch unscathed?
That is the third straight week that the Bulldogs are going through a top-25 staff. Georgia beat No. 12 Missouri by 9 factors two weeks in the past and annihilated No. 9 Ole Miss this previous weekend by 35 factors.
Each of these video games have been in Athens, although. The defending back-to-back nationwide champions should go right into a hostile setting in Knoxville to protect their good season this week.
Matchup to observe: James Pearce Jr. vs. Amarius Mims
Pearce is likely one of the greatest pass-rushers in faculty football this season. The true sophomore ranks third amongst FBS edge defenders in pass-rushing grade (91.6), third in pass-rush win charge (22.8%) and fifth in stress charge (21.3%). Pearce is staking his declare as one of many early prime prospects within the 2025 NFL Draft.
He most frequently traces up towards the proper deal with, that means he’ll have loads of repetitions towards Georgia’s Amarius Mims. The junior missed six video games this season because of ankle surgical procedure however returned final weekend for Georgia’s win over Ole Miss. On 107 pass-blocking snaps this season, Mims hasn’t allowed a sack and has surrendered just one stress. He’s presently a first-round prospect on PFF’s 2024 NFL Draft large board.
Prediction: Georgia 41, Tennessee 17
For the second straight week, Georgia manhandles a top-25 opponent.
NO. 21 KANSAS STATE WILDCATS AT NO. 25 KANSAS JAYHAWKS (7 P.M. EST ON FS1)
Storyline to know: One of many greatest video games within the Sunflower Showdown’s historical past
Kansas State and Kansas have met in each season since 1911, making it the fourth-longest uninterrupted rivalry within the FBS.
Longest Uninterrupted Rivalries within the FBS
|N.C. State-Wake Forest||1910|
*Bedlam is ending after this season with Oklahoma leaving the Huge 12 for the SEC
This 12 months’s Sunflower Showdown is one in all historic significance. That is solely the second time in 121 conferences that Kansas State and Kansas are each ranked once they match up, with the one different occasion occurring in 1995.
Matchup to observe: Will Jason Bean be capable to play?
Kansas’ possibilities on this sport might in the end hinge on Jason Bean’s availability. He suffered a head harm within the second quarter towards Texas Tech and didn’t return, which in the end resulted in a Jayhawks’ loss. With starter Jalon Daniels lacking seven video games this 12 months because of again tightness, Kansas turned to true freshman walk-on Cole Ballard, who posted a 54.5 passing grade within the loss.
The excellent news for the Jayhawks is that head coach Lance Leipold is “very optimistic” Bean will be capable to go Saturday towards Kansas State.
Prediction: Kansas State 34, Kansas 27
Even when Bean performs, Kansas State pulls off the street victory.
NO. 5 WASHINGTON HUSKIES AT NO. 11 OREGON STATE BEAVERS (7:30 P.M. EST ON ABC)
Storyline to know: Is that this lastly the week that Washington goes down?
Washington has gained its previous six video games by a mean of simply seven factors after successful their first 4 by a mean of 33 factors.
The Huskies head to Corvallis this week to tackle Oregon State, and for the primary time this season, they enter the sport as underdogs (2.5 factors).
Matchup to observe: Two contrasting offenses
Moreover having home-field benefit, Oregon State is favored over Washington due to their physicality on offense. The Beavers lead the nation in run-blocking grade (84.4) and rank tenth within the Energy 5 in yards earlier than contact per try (2.5 yards). Washington’s protection, in the meantime, is simply 73rd in staff run-defense grade this season.
Washington’s bread and butter offensively is its passing sport, led by a Heisman candidate at quarterback in Michael Penix Jr. and the highest-graded receiving corps within the nation (87.2). Oregon State fields the 18th-best protection within the nation when it comes to how usually it permits 15-plus-yard passes (11.6%). Nevertheless, the Beavers haven’t confronted an offense even corresponding to Washington’s this season.
Prediction: Washington 34, Oregon State 31
Washington pulls off the victory as an underdog and retains its undefeated season alive.
NO. 7 TEXAS LONGHORNS AT IOWA STATE CYCLONES (8 P.M. EST ON FOX)
Storyline to know: What does Texas’ offense appear like with out its celebrity?
Proper when Texas returned beginning quarterback Quinn Ewers from his shoulder harm, the Longhorns suffered one other devastating blow to their offense. Star working again Jonathon Brooks tore his ACL towards TCU and can miss the rest of the season. Earlier than he went down, the redshirt sophomore was PFF’s prime working again prospect within the 2024 NFL Draft.
True freshman CJ Baxter, the highest working again recruit within the 2023 class, will begin in his absence.
Matchup to observe: Can Quinn Ewers step up?
With Brooks out, there’s much more stress on Ewers to hold this offense. The redshirt sophomore has improved his grade to 81.1 from 72.4 a 12 months in the past, however he’ll possible have to take his sport to a different stage with out Brooks. Fortunately for Ewers, Texas’ receiving corps is one in all faculty football’s greatest, as is the offensive line defending him.
Iowa State’s protection has simply the 113th-best pass-rushing grade within the nation this season, so it’s unlikely they’ll be capable to get residence on Ewers usually. The place the Cyclones do excel is in protection, posting the ninth-best protection grade within the FBS (91.3).
Prediction: Texas 28, Iowa State 20
Ewers does simply sufficient with out Brooks and Texas retains its playoff aspirations alive.