So much history goes down on the final week of the college football season. The hero Bowl between Nebraska and Iowa. Minnesota and Wisconsin battling over the Paul Bunyan axe. The Governors Cup, awarded to the winner between Kentucky and Louisville. The Palmetto Bowl that features South Carolina and Clemson. Or what about Baylor and Texas Tech duking it out in the BUTT Bowl. This is such a great weekend and it was hard to narrow it down to five games, but whichever games you watch, enjoy the history and tradition behind each.
Honorable Mention - Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. USC Trojans
This used to be a clash of college football titans, the two have 11 titles each and seven Heisman winners a piece. However, the Irish has fallen out of favor and now this is more of a trap game for the revamped Trojan squad. With Sam Darnold at the helm the Trojans have a shot now to work into the top 10 after falling out of the top 25. Now they face off yet again for the Jeweled Shillelagh trophy.
#5 - (15) Florida Gators vs. (14) Florida State Seminoles
There are heavy in state bragging rights tied up in this game but the Seminoles are after a loftier goal. The senior class is out to claim an 8-0 run against the in state rivals in Florida and Miami. With their win over the Hurricanes, FSU is one victory away from a historic sweep. While this FSU team has a better offense, the Gators and their defensive front will prevail. Much like they did against LSU on the one yard line last weekend.
Prediction: Florida wins 20-13
#4 - (22) Utah Utes vs. (9) Colorado Buffaloes - Rumble in the Rockies
After they had a 51 year hiatus, these two have been battling it out since Colorado joined the PAC-12 conference five years ago. Now as they gear up for another clash, but this time the opportunity to play for the conference title is on the line. While Utah has played the most consistently all year long, Colorado has a clamp down defense and an offense that churns out points. The Buffs also have the confidence on their side after knocking off the Cougars last week.
prediction: Colorado wins 35-24
#3 - (5) Washington Huskies vs. (22) Washington State Cougars - Apple Cup
This one goes down on Friday and will decide who gets to play for the conference title or if the PAC-12 gets a bid in the College Playoff. The added bonus is also having in-state bragging rights and the Apple Cup. While Washington’s defense has played better and Jake Browning is a top level quarterback, I see an upset coming. The last big game that the Huskies played in, they were romped by the Trojans. The Cougars also are a strong underdog team that can attack the Huskies’ defense from all over the field with the dynamic attack Luke Falk leads. The Cougars also are a heavy first quarter team and when they jump out to a lead in the first quarter, this will give Washington problems.
Prediction: Washington State wins 43-38
#2 - (13) Auburn Tigers vs. (1) Alabama Crimson Tide - Iron Bowl
Auburn knows how to beat Alabama, spread out the defense and get their quarterback making plays outside the pocket and on the move. However, this is one of the best defenses that the Tide has ever had under Nick Saban. They have 40 sacks on the season and have forced 20 total turnovers, with seven touchdowns. This defense is going to sink their teeth into the Tigers and make this an easy game for Jalen Hurts and the Tide’s offense.
Prediction: Alabama wins 45-28
#1 - (3) Michigan Wolverines vs. (2) Ohio State Buckeyes - The Game
The most highly anticipated game of the year is finally here as the number three and number two teams face off in what was predicted in the preseason, as a top four face off. This will have massive implications on the college playoff, the Bowl games proceeding the playoff, to who can play for the Big 10 conference title. While the Wolverines may be without their starting quarterback Wilton Speight will probably sit out but the Michigan defense is still a force to be reckoned with and Jabrill Peppers could play quarterback for a win. The Michigan defense also has 36 sacks and 16 turnovers. But the Ohio State is ranked 2nd in sacks(40) and turnovers(22). They also have their starting quarterback, and JT Barrett will be the difference in this matchup.
Prediction: Ohio State Wins 31-28