College Football Bowl Projections 2019, Week 12: LSU up, Alabama down

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LSU’s 46-41 win over Alabama on Saturday afternoon in Tuscaloosa caused a domino effect in this week’s college football bowl projections.

We knew the LSU vs. Alabama result would have a major impact in the bowl projections, particularly in the race for the College Football Playoff and the New Year’s Six, and that proved true after LSU’s 46-41 thrilling victory over the Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa.

LSU broke out to a 33-13 first half lead, but Tua Tagovailoa and Alabama refused to go gently into the night, rallying with a 28-13 second half, coming up just short in its comeback rally. LSU’s win bumps them to the top of the rankings; no team in college football boasts a resume that can stack up with the Tigers at this point of the season.

I’ve had LSU and Alabama projected as playoff teams for the last few weeks, and while I think that’s still a strong possibility, that was based off an LSU loss in Tuscaloosa. The Tigers had the resume to support a singular defeat and still remain in the top four. The question now becomes whether Alabama — which has a current best win of Texas A&M — can do the same. There’s already plenty of vitriol from fans and analysts fighting against the thought of the Crimson Tide getting into the playoff again without winning their division, but I expect Alabama to remain No. 4 in this week’s playoff rankings.

Alabama’s defeat opens the door up for the Pac-12 in particular. A one-loss Pac-12 champion in Oregon or Utah probably controls its own destiny. Oklahoma is now back in the thick of the race, too, though the Sooners could benefit from some style points after narrowly staving off a second straight upset to Iowa State in Norman.

How does the playoff look after LSU’s win over Alabama? How high did Minnesota climb after proving its legitimacy with a win over Penn State?

I answer that and more in this week’s bowl projections.

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