College Football Week 15 betting preview
It’s conference championship weekend around college football, and we have a pretty good idea which conferences will make up 75 percent of the College Football Playoff – the final rankings will be unveiled this Sunday.
Odds courtesy of OddsShark.com
The final spot could be decided Friday when No. 5 Utah plays No. 13 Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship Game from Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California. The Utes are -7 and have covered their past eight games. If one-loss Utah destroys two-loss Oregon, it would be tough to keep the Utes out of the playoff no matter what happens on Saturday among the other Power 5 conference title games. The Utes have never won the Pac-12 title.
Utah’s only loss this season was back on September 30 to a Southern Cal team that ended up being pretty good. That defeat is certainly “better” than Georgia’s one loss, for example, which came to a bad South Carolina team. If the Ducks pull off the upset, the Pac-12 will be shut out of the playoff yet again. The Utes and Ducks didn’t play this regular season but did last year, with Utah winning 32-25 at home.
No Group of 5 school has come close to reaching the playoff yet and it’s not happening this year, either. However, the highest-ranked Group of 5 school will earn a spot in a New Year’s Six bowl, this year the Cotton Bowl on December 28.
That Group of 5 spot will come down to four schools: Cincinnati, Memphis, Boise State and Appalachian State (rather unlikely for Appalachian State). The No. 20 Bearcats and No. 17 Tigers play one another on Saturday in the American Athletic Conference title game in Memphis. The Tigers get to host because they just beat Cincinnati 34-24 last Friday in Memphis to clinch the AAC West title. The Tigers were -11.5 then and are -9.5 for the rematch. The Bearcats are on a six-game cover streak in Memphis.
Boise State is close to being unbeaten, losing only by three at BYU out of conference on October 19. On Saturday, the No. 19 Broncos host unranked Hawaii in the Mountain West Conference title game. Boise is -13.5 and has covered the past six in the series. It’s the first time in that game for Hawaii, which lost at Boise on October 12, 59-37. The Broncos are 7-0 all-time at home against the Warriors.