Iowa vs Maryland : Iowa have had a week off and are no doubt ready to get back on the field. On Saturday they take on Minnesota at 3:30 p.m. Iowa don’t have the home-field advantage, but they do enjoy a 7-point advantage in the spread.
Iowa vs Maryland
It was all tied up at halftime, but Iowa weren’t quite Wisconsin’s equal in the second half when they met two weeks ago. Iowa came up short against Wisconsin, falling 17-28. Iowa’s loss came about despite a quality game from Nathan Stanley, who passed for 256 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Meanwhile, after a dominant victory in their contest three weeks ago, Minnesota were humbled. They have to be aching after a bruising 13-42 defeat to Maryland. Minnesota were down by 13-35 at the end of the third quarter, which was just too much to recover from.
There’s a ton of action standing between today and the final College Football Playoff Top 25 rankings, but there is clear separation up top for now. Alabama, Ohio State, Clemson and Notre Dame are all undefeated, were each ranked in the top five of every single AP Top 25 ballot this week and are the obvious candidates to reach the playoff.
LSU, Michigan and Oregon made the biggest upward strides in the latest AP poll, which is reflected in the updated bowl projections below. Both the Tigers and the Ducks have moved up into New Year’s Six bowls. The Wolverines were already projected for the Fiesta Bowl last week, but it now looks like they’re headed for a more coveted spot in the Rose Bowl.
Conversely, West Virginia, Washington, Penn State, Wisconsin, Miami and Auburn all lost, plummeted in the rankings and slipped into less desirable spots in the bowl projections.
If Auburn doesn’t win at Ole Miss this weekend—it opened as a 2.5-point favorite, so a win is hardly a given—it might not even become bowl-eligible. The Tigers are 4-3 with likely losses at Alabama and Georgia and a potential home loss to Texas A&M remaining. If they fail to reach six wins, it would be the first time that a preseason Top 8 team failed to play in a bowl game since Texas in 2010.