Pat Kinnison

Cowboys Bowl Options: Sugar Or Alamo

After college football results from across the country the last several days It's now all but assured that Oklahoma State will be playing in the Sugar Bowl (with a Bedlam win) or the Alamo Bowl (with a loss Saturday).

I believe this post is simply preaching to the choir as I give almost all of you here on Go Pokes credit for knowing what needed to happen over the Thanksgiving weekend to make it much more possible, even likely, for the winner of the Bedlam/Big 12 Championship Game to break into the final four of the College Football Playoff Committee.

The only thing that happened in the Big 12/Oklahoma State's favor was the Ohio State win over Michigan, but even the way that happened, double overtime, leaves Michigan as a legitimate option for the committee. I do not expect Michigan to fall below Oklahoma and Oklahoma State in the CFP rankings on Tuesday. Alabama and Clemson both won and both were expected.

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There is no reason to try to count on miracles. However, the reasonable results to count on and hope for did not happen as Penn State beat Michigan State and Wisconsin beat Minnesota leaving the CFP committee every reason to consider a Big 12 champion along with Ohio State and, depending on championship weekend results, even Michigan for the final four. Washington won big in the Pac-12 and so did Colorado over a ranked Utah team to keep the Pac-12 hopes sturdy for the final four.

It is now very hard to see any combination of events that would open up a spot in the final four except for the Big 12 champion, short of a complete blow out in the Bedlam game which I don't see happening.

The Bedlam game now becomes an easy situation bowl-wise as the winner takes the Big 12 championship and will go to New Orleans and play in the Sugar Bowl with the loser heading to San Antonio for the Alamo Bowl. The Sugar Bowl is on Monday, Jan. 2, 2017 against the best team available from the SEC, and the Alamo Bowl is on Thursday, Dec. 29, versus the second best team available from the Pac-12.

Even those games took unexpected hits for opponents over the weekend. The Sugar Bowl's SEC representative looked like a Tennessee or Florida affair until Tennessee lost to Vanderbilt to drop to 8-4. Florida, which will only play 12 games even with the SEC Championship because of the LSU-UF scheduling debacle, lost to Florida State and will almost assuredly lose in Atlanta next week to Alabama leaving the Gators with an 8-4 record as well.

That means Auburn could now get the nod. It will be interesting who the SEC will push forward here. Tennessee beat Florida head to head early in the season, but Florida is the SEC East Division champion. Auburn finished somewhat strong and played competitive for awhile with Alabama.

The Alamo Bowl is more cut and dried with Colorado the likely team in San Antonio if Washington wins the Pac-12 Championship Game and does not get in the CFP. That would send Washington to the Rose Bowl and Colorado to the Alamo. If Washington gets in the CFP then Colorado would go to the Rose Bowl and Southern Cal and former OSU running back commitment Ronald Jones, from McKinney North HS, would be heading to the Alamo. If Colorado wins the Pac-12 Championship Game then CU would be in the Rose Bowl, unless the Buffaloes got in the CFP. Washington would be heading to San Antonio for the Alamo.

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