After an exciting Week 6 of college football, the conference landscape is starting to take shape in both the Big 12 and PAC-12. Some unlikely frontrunners have emerged, as well as some teams who still have some work to do if they want to get back into the mix.
The highly anticipated Red River Rivalry turned into a blood bath in Dallas as Texas (4-2) walloped Oklahoma (3-3) by a score of 49-0. Oklahoma is still winless in conference play, and seem to be entirely out of the mix for the conference championship.
The matchup between TCU (5-0) and Kansas (5-1) delivered, and TCU stayed perfect on the season by defeating Kansas in a close one. The Horned Frogs have now played themselves into a spot in the top 15. The Jayhawks, who managed to give TCU all they could handle without the services of Jalon Daniels for much of the game, will get to remain at #19 for a second straight week.
There’s still a long way to go, but after week 6 the frontrunners of the Big 12 are Oklahoma State (5-0), TCU (5-0), Kansas State (5-1), and Kansas (5-1). Oklahoma State plays TCU in week 7, so someone will be getting their first loss.
Both USC (6-0) and UCLA (6-0) refuse to lose. UCLA beat Utah (4-2) to earn the #11 spot on the AP top 25 poll, and USC cruised past Washington State (4-2) to remain the highest ranked PAC-12 team. UCLA has a bye in Qeek 7, but will take on Oregon (5-1) the following week in what should be a fantastic conference matchup.
Oregon (5-1) continues to steadily climb the rankings. After only mustering three points in their week 1 loss to Georgia, the Ducks have now scored over 40+ points in each of their last 5 games. They sit at #12 in the polls, just an arms reach behind UCLA.
Washington (4-2), who started the season 4-0 has now dropped two conference games in a row, including one to a struggling Arizona State (2-4) team. Despite their overall record, the Huskies are 1-2 in conference play, so they’ll need to figure it out soon if they want to keep up with other Pac-12 frontrunners like USC, UCLA and Oregon.
Here are what some experts are predicting for the 30th Valero Alamo Bowl matchup:
Yahoo: #23 Texas vs #7 USC
ESPN (Bonagura): #23 Texas vs #11 UCLA
Action Sports (McMurphy): #13 TCU vs #12 Oregon
CBS Sports (Jerry Palm): #23 Texas vs #11 UCLA
247 Sports: Baylor vs #11 UCLA
USA Today: #17 Kansas State vs #11 UCLA
Week 7 Previews
This Weekend in the Big 12
The Big 12 leads all conferences in scoring (36 ppg), total yards (444), rushing yards (189) and pass completion percentage (66%).
Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma State and TCU are 1 win away from bowl eligibility.
Thursday, Baylor (3-2) travels to Morgantown to meet West Virginia (2-3). Both teams had a bye last weekend but are coming off loses (Baylor lost to Oklahoma State 36-25, while West Virginia lost to Texas 38-20).
#7 Oklahoma State (5-0) goes to Fort Worth to take on #15 TCU (5-0). The Cowboys have won their last 6, most recently defeating Texas Tech 41-31; while the Horned Frogs have run off 5 in a row beating Kansas 38-31 last weekend.
#20 Kansas (5-1) heads into Norman to play Oklahoma (3-3). The Jayhawks lost their first game of the season in a 38-31 loss to TCU, while the Sooners have lost their last 3 – most recently 49-0 to Texas.
Iowa State (3-3) flies into Austin to face #24 Texas (4-2). These two teams come in on 2 game streaks – Iowa State has dropped their last 2 (14-11 to Kansas, 10-9 to Kansas State); while Texas has won their last 2 (38-20 over West Virginia, 49-0 over Oklahoma).
Kansas State and Texas Tech have byes.
This Weekend in the Pac-12
5 of the 15 FBS teams who average at least 40 ppg reside in the Pac-12: 9 Oregon (42), 10 UCLA (41.5), 12 Washington (41), 14 Utah (40.3) and 15 USC (40.2).
USC and UCLA are bowl-eligible, Oregon is 1 win away.
#6 USC (6-0) ventures into Salt Lake City to square off with #19 Utah (4-2). The Trojans have won their last 6 after defeating WSU 30-14, while the Utes come in off a 42-32 loss to UCLA.
Arizona (3-3) heads into Seattle to play Washington (4-2). The Wildcats come in off a 49-22 loss to Oregon, while the Huskies have dropped their last 2 after a 45-38 setback to ASU last weekend.
California (3-2) goes to Boulder to take on Colorado (0-5). Both teams had byes last weekend. The Bears are looking for win #4 on the season in route to a bowl berth, while the Buffs are looking for their first win of the season.
Washington State (4-2) travels to Corvallis to meet Oregon State (4-2). The Cougars come into the contest off a 30-14 loss to USC, while the Beavers won in dramatic fashion (a 58 yard TD reception with 13 seconds remaining) at Stanford 28-27.
Stanford (1-4) goes to South Bend to face Notre Dame (3-2). The Cardinal are in the midst of a 4-game losing streak after a heartbreaking 28-27 loss to Oregon State, while the Irish come into the contest on a 3-game winning streak after beating BYU 28-20 last weekend in Vegas.
Arizona State, Oregon and UCLA have byes.
Other Games of Naitonal Interest
#1 Alabama (6-0) goes to Knoxville to face #8 Tennessee (5-0).
#10 Penn State (5-0) travels to The Big House to take on #4 Michigan (6-0).
#13 NC State (5-1) heads to Syracuse to meet #18 Syracuse (5-0).
#17 Mississippi State (5-1) goes to Lexington to play #22 Kentucky (4-2).