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Who Needs a Blogpoll Regular Season Finale: Mountain West, Big Ten take it on the chin

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A largely anticlimactic regular season draws to a close.

NCAA Football: Auburn at Alabama John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Biggest Winner: By far, the Washington Huskies. With Louisville getting housed, and Penn State hanging on to playoff hopes in the face of Ohio State’s victory, the Huskies delivered a command road performance, easily their best of the season. Colorado, like Penn State, also needs some help, but overall the Big Three in the Pac 12 really helped themselves, at least for high profile bowls. Washington will almost certainly be ranked 4th by the Playoff Committee this Tuesday. And, with another game against a Top-10 team on tap next week, the Huskies should be able to hold off a challenge from Penn State, which takes us to our loser...

Biggest Loser, Power Five: Womp. Womp. Big Ten: The Lions have been destroying people the last two months of the season, but more and more people will look at a potential win over Wisconsin as a valedictory. Really, who has Wisconsin beaten? It’s gotten a lot of credit for an early season win over LSU, a now-unranked Nebraska team, and two moral victories (the Iowa win does look better, though.) That’s a thin resume. The playoff berth was, in all probability, just wrapped up by Ohio State who now sports a commanding 3-1 record against teams in the committee’s Top 10. That’s a helluva resume by any reckoning, and one the Lions can’t overcome. Still, having the conference throw itself behind a team that didn’t win its division is funny as hell, but, a very necessary development for the playoff. Down the road, this precedent will help the SEC West teams more than it will the Big Ten. (A USC-Penn State Rose Bowl would have two of the nation’s most improved teams and would be an excellent ball game, so cheer up, Jim Delany.) Still for the reasons above with Washington, the Big 10 is looking at just one slot.

Biggest Loser, Group of Five: Mountain West. Let’s just a look at the conference leaderboard, shall we: Wyoming? Blown out by an average New Mexico squad. San Diego State? Blown out by an average-but-improving Colorado State team. At home. Boise State? Lost its third in a row to the Air Force Falcons. The entire conference pooping the bed the last week of the season opens the door for this year’s big money winner...

Biggest Winner, Group of Five: Barring an absolute collapse in the MAC championship game, the Western Michigan Broncos are going to a New Year’s Big Six bowl. They played superbly on Friday night too, dominating a good Toledo team to wrap up the Western Division. This undefeated team has the potential to be a handful for a P5 squad who disregards the Broncos great running game.

1

Alabama Crimson Tide

1

2

Ohio State Buckeyes

2

3

Penn State Nittany Lions

4

4

Clemson Tigers

5

5

Washington Huskies

7

6

Michigan Wolverines

3

7

Colorado Buffaloes

13

8

Wisconsin Badgers

6

9

USC Trojans

12

10

Oklahoma State Cowboys

14

11

Oklahoma Sooners

11

12

LSU Tigers

18

13

Navy Midshipmen

14

14

Western Michigan Broncos

15

15

West Virginia Mountaineers
22

16

Florida State Seminoles

23

17

Houston Cougars

8

18

Iowa Hawkeyes

--

19

USF Bulls

--

20

Troy Trojans

T-25

21

Florida Gators

16

22

Stanford Cardinal

T-24

23

Auburn Tigers

8

24

Memphis Tigers

--

25

Louisville Cardinals

10

Predicted Playoffs and Seeds:
These have changed some over the season, but, at the end of the day, if the favorites hold serve on Saturday, there’s not going to be too much hassle: the playoffs will closely mirror the polls.

  1. Alabama
  2. Ohio State
  3. Clemson
  4. Washington