Changes At The Top This Week
Hello everyone and welcome to our 2023 Last Word On College Football Week 12 Bowl Projections. Most of the biggest news happened off the gridiron. Jim Harbaugh accepted his three game suspension, missed the Maryland game and will miss Saturday’s epic match up with Ohio State. In addition linebackers coach Chris Partridge was fired.
In other news to the surprise of no one the NCAA denied James Madison’s appeal for a waiver on their bowl ban. Then with the ESPN Gameday crew on hand they suffered their first loss of the year to Appalachian State. We still think they get to play in the post-season but more on that shortly.
There was some major news with one of our playoff teams. In addition we’ve moved around some of the selection committee games. If you’d like to see how things differ from last week click here.
College Football Playoff
Allstate Sugar Bowl: January 1st- (1)- Georgia vs. (4)- Washington- The Huskies picked up a big win on the road at Oregon State. By the way the Bulldogs had no trouble with Tennessee and remain a solid number one.
Prudential Rose Bowl: January 1st- (2)- Michigan vs. (3)- Florida State- The biggest news came with the injury to Seminoles quarterback Jordan Travis against North Alabama who is out for the year. The Wolverines survived an upset scare from Maryland and now host Ohio State on Saturday.
College Football National Championship: January 8th- (1)- Georgia vs. (2)- Michigan- Our title game remains the same as the last few weeks.
Heading into our next set of match-ups ups there are numerous changes this week.
Selection Committee Games
Goodyear Cotton Bowl: December 29th- Missouri vs. Texas- We’ve talked about flipping Ole Miss and Missouri and we did. They are headed to Texas to face a Longhorn squad that won 10 games for the first time since 2009.
Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl: December 30th- Tulane vs. Penn State- For this week we’re moving the Green Wave east. However, they’ve got a huge game against Texas San Antonio. Should they falter then Liberty is waiting in the wings.
Capital One Orange Bowl: December 30th- Louisville vs. Ohio State– The Cards held off Miami and clinched a berth in the ACC title game. OSU had no trouble with Minnesota setting up the game with Michigan.
VRBO Fiesta Bowl: January 1st- Oregon vs. Alabama- As expected the Crimson Tide had no trouble with Chattanooga. The Ducks meet Oregon State in the “Civil War” on Friday night.
Continuing with our 2023 Week 12 Bowl Projections let’s roll through the games by date. One thing to note there are no games on December 24th or 31st to not go up against the NFL schedule.
And Then There Were 67
Currently, that’s the number of bowl-eligible teams with one week remaining. Adding in James Madison and Jacksonville State makes 69. That leaves 13 spots which means the final week of the regular season will go a big way to determining how many 5-7 teams we need, if any.
There are currently 24 five-win teams in conferences with one week remaining. If half of those schools win then we’re up to 79. If James Madison and Jacksonville State get in then only one 5-7 team is needed. Going on APR ranking the top schools in order would be Minnesota, Rice, Mississippi State, Central Florida, and South Carolina. We project Rice and UCF to get to six wins.
Games Around the New Year
Cheez-It Citrus Bowl: January 1st- Big 10 vs. SEC- Ole Miss vs. Iowa- As we talked about we swapped the Rebels and Missouri. On the other side of the ball, the Hawkeyes won the Big 10 West and are headed to Orlando.
ReliaQuest Bowl: January 1st- SEC vs. Big 10- LSU vs. Notre Dame- Barring any upsets this week the “Brian Kelly” bowl looks on tap for Tampa.
TransPerfect Music City Bowl: December 30th- SEC vs. Big 10- Texas A&M vs. Wisconsin- The folks in Nashville are reportedly very interested in the Aggies so we have them slotted there this week.
Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl: December 30th- MAC vs. MWC– Fresno State vs. Toledo
TaxSlayer Gator Bowl: December 29th- SEC vs. Big 10 or ACC/Notre Dame- North Carolina vs. Tennessee
Tony The Tiger Sun Bowl: December 29th- ACC/Notre Dame vs. Pac-12- Miami (Florida) vs. Utah
AutoZone Liberty Bowl: December 29th- Big 12 vs. SEC- Mississippi State vs. Kansas State
Post Christmas Games
Quick Lane Bowl: December 26th- Big 10 vs. MAC- Northwestern vs. Ohio- A huge shout out to the Wildcats who went from one win in 2022 to six and bowl eligibility this year.
SERVPRO First Responder Bowl: December 26th- American/ACC/Big 12/ SEC- Air Force* vs. Texas Tech
Guaranteed Rate Bowl: December 26th- Big 12 vs. Big 10- West Virginia vs. Minnesota
Military Bowl: December 27th- ACC/Notre Dame vs. American- Virginia Tech vs. Memphis
Duke’s Mayo Bowl: December 27th- ACC/Notre Dame vs. SEC- Duke vs. Kentucky- Two teams who have struggled the second half of the season meet in Charlotte. The Blue Devils and Wildcats haven’t played since 1933 with Duke holding a 4-0 lead.
TaxAct Texas Bowl: December 27th- Big 12 vs. SEC- Kansas vs. Auburn- A tough week for the Tigers as they were blown out at home by New Mexico State.
Wasabi Fenway Bowl: December 28th- ACC/Notre Dame vs. American- Syracuse vs. SMU- The Orange fired coach Dino Babers and need to beat Wake Forest to get their sixth win.
Bad Boy Motors Pinstripe Bowl: December 28th- ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big 10- Georgia Tech vs. Rutgers
Pop Tarts Bowl- December 28th: ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big 12- North Carolina State vs. Oklahoma State
Valero Alamo Bowl: December 28th- Big 12 vs. Pac-12- Oklahoma vs. Arizona- There may be no hotter team right now in college football than the Wildcats.
As we roll on with our 2023 Week 12 Bowl Projections let’s move to the set of games just before Christmas. That includes a whopping seven games on December 23rd.
Games Right Before Christmas
TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl December 23rd: American vs. SEC- South Alabama* vs. Illinois*
Camellia Bowl- December 23rd: MAC vs. Sun Belt- Bowling Green vs. Coastal Carolina
Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl: December 23rd- Big 12 vs. Pool- Colorado State* vs. Louisiana
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: December 23rd- MAC vs. MWC- Miami (Ohio) vs. San Jose State
68 Ventures Bowl: December 23rd- Pool vs. Sun Belt- Georgia Southern vs. Utah State
RS Distribution Las Vegas Bowl: December 23rd- Big 10 vs. Pac-12- Maryland vs. UCLA
Easy Post Hawai’i Bowl: December 23rd- Conference USA/MWC/American- Rice vs. Wyoming
Union Home Mortgage Gasparilla Bowl: December 22nd- American/ACC/Notre Dame/SEC- South Florida vs. Central Florida
RoofClaim.com Boca Raton Bowl: December 21st- Group Of Five vs. Group Of Five- Appalachian State vs. New Mexico State- Under coach Jerry Kill the Aggies got 1.8 million from Auburn and blew them out 31-10.
We wrap up our 2023 Week 12 Bowl Projections with the first set of bowls on the schedule. That includes a massive seven-game slate on December 16th alone.
First Weekend Games
Famous Toastery Bowl: December 16th- Conference USA vs. MAC- Central Michigan vs. Marshall- The former Bahamas Bowl being played in Charlotte this year has a new sponsor.
Cricket Celebration Bowl: December 16th- MEAC vs. SWAC- Florida A&M vs. Howard+- The Bison became the first team to clinch a bowl bid by winning the MEAC.
R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl: December 16th- Conference USA vs. Sun Belt- Troy vs. Liberty
Duluth Trading Cure Bowl: December 16th- Group Of Five vs. Group Of Five- Jacksonville State vs. James Madison
Isleta New Mexico Bowl: December 16th- C-USA vs. MWC- Boise State vs. Western Kentucky
LA Bowl Hosted By Gronk: December 16th- Pac-12 vs. Mountain West- USC vs. UNLV
Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl: December 16th-Big 12 vs. Pac-12- Iowa State vs. Arkansas State*
Myrtle Beach Bowl: American/MAC/Sun Belt- December 18th- Northern Illinois vs. Georgia State
Scooter’s Coffee Frisco Bowl: December 19th-Group of Five vs. Group Of Five- Texas San-Antonio vs. Texas State
*Denotes a replacement team.
+Denotes a team that has accepted a bid
Thanks for checking out our Week 12 2023 Bowl Projections here at Last Word On College Football.