Last week the first College Football Playoff (CFP) rankings were released and we caught our first glimpse of the rankings that will ultimately decide team’s bowl fate. As always, the CFP will release their updated weekly poll tonight at 6:30 p.m. CST.
With the new College Football Playoff in place the Valero Alamo Bowl will now feature the top teams from the Big 12 and Pac-12 conferences outside of the CFP structure. Currently there are 10 ranked Big 12 and Pac-12 schools in all three major polls.
Based on the latest media bowl projections, Baylor from the Big 12 and Arizona State from the Pac-12 are the popular picks to play in this year’s Valero Alamo Bowl.
Baylor is currently ranked #10 in the AP Poll and Amway Coaches Poll, and was ranked #12 in the first CFP Poll last week. The Bears boasts one the nation’s most prolific offenses behind the arm of senior quarterback Bryce Petty. Baylor ranks first in the country in points per game, averaging 50.4 ppg, while throwing for 349 yards per game. They have scored at least 45 points in six games this season and have eclipsed 60 points four times. Baylor’s lone loss comes at the hands of West Virginia two weeks ago. Looking ahead, the Bear’s travel to Norman this week to take on Oklahoma and a date with #9 Kansas State is looming on December 6.
After defeating #17 Utah in double-overtime last weekend, Arizona State finds itself on the cusp of the Top 10 in the traditional polls; #11 in the AP Poll and #12 in the Coaches Poll. The Devils have already defeated three ranked teams this year and will face their fifth of the season this weekend when they host #8 Notre Dame. After missing three games earlier this season due to injury, senior quarterback Taylor Kelly is back at the helm for Arizona State and has thrown for 1,010 yards and nine touchdowns on the year. Junior wide receiver Jaelen Strong is among the best receivers in the Pac-12 and leads the team in receptions, yards and receiving touchdowns. After Notre Dame this weekend, Arizona State will go on the road to play Oregon State.
Jerry Palm (CBS Sports): #16 Oklahoma vs. #21 Arizona
Bill Bender (Sporting News): #9 Kansas State vs. USC
Phil Steele: #10 Baylor vs. #21 Arizona
Athlon Sports: #10 Baylor vs. #11 Arizona State
USA Today: #10 Baylor vs. #11 Arizona State
Jason Kirk (SB Nation): #10 Baylor vs. #11 Arizona State
Brett McMurphy (ESPN): #10 Baylor vs. #21 Arizona
Mark Schlabach (ESPN): #10 Baylor vs. #11 Arizona State
Valero Alamo Bowl Travel Plans
Each week the Valero Alamo Bowl sends representatives to various Big 12 and Pac-12 games to scout teams that could potentially play in this year’s game. This week’s games are:
#8 Notre Dame at #11 Arizona State
#10 Baylor at #16 Oklahoma
#9 Kansas State at #6 TCU