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Week 13 College Football Rooting Guide, Open Thread and TV Schedule

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The Huskies have punched their ticket to the Pac-12 Championship and now turn their attention to the playoff race.

NCAA Football: Washington at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Purple hand prints? Hmmm, there is an idea. I’ll have to mention that one to my wife.

Anyhooooo, I digress. Forgive me. I’m still on an Apple Cup high and a bourbon-and-beer hangover. But we’ve got serious business to discuss.

Thanks to UW’s dominating 45-17 Apple Cup victory over Washington State, the Huskies have finished the 2016 regular season in just about as good a shape as they could ever have dreamed. They are the North Division champions for the first time ever and they are positioned very well for a possible selection to the College Football Playoffs.

But that dream is not yet fully materialized. The Huskies still could use a little help and they could use it starting today.

So, here is your Week 13 rooting guide. I encourage each and every one of you to sit down with some hot turkey sandwiches on a plate, a beverage of your choice in your left hand and the television remote in the other. Watch some college football. Join the open thread discussion. Root for the guys that I tell you to.

You’ll thank me tomorrow.

Week 13 Rooting Guide

#3 Michigan at #2 Ohio State

The math here is pretty simple. The Huskies are the #5 team in the nation. Two of the teams ahead of them square off today. One of those teams has to lose. One way or another, UW theoretically should jump into the top four no matter what happens. Right?

“Stick to the plan.”

Michigan winning is the ideal scenario for Husky fans. That’s been the plan and should remain the plan for Husky rooting purposes. If the Wolverines win, they take the Big Ten East title and effectively eliminate both Ohio State and Penn State from playoff contention.

I know that Michigan has suffered some injuries—in particular a devastating broken collarbone to their star QB Wilton Speight—and are coming down from whatever peak that they enjoyed in October. But this is still a gritty football time that is built from the line of scrimmage out. They have the pieces required to go into the Horseshoe and take care of business against the Buckeyes.

An Ohio State victory isn’t necessarily a tragedy, but it complicates things. The Buckeyes need a Penn State loss in addition to this win to take the Big Ten East. UW would still be a theoretical favorite to jump into top four in this case, but the debate about whether or not UW deserves to be in the top four ahead of a one-loss, eliminated Ohio State would become much more heated and would really test the committee’s resolve on the notion of conference championships being a significant factor in the rankings.

Michigan State at #7 Penn State

This one is easy. Husky fans everywhere are Spartan fans today. The question is really whether or not Mark Dantonio’s 3-win team has any emotion left in the tank after what they spent in last week’s loss to Ohio State. They took the Buckeyes to the last few seconds, only to lose the game on a failed two-point conversion attempt.

I’m guessing that Penn State will take this one, but it may very well be close.

Minnesota at #6 Wisconsin

The Badgers have already clinched the Big Ten West thanks to Nebraska’s loss to Iowa yesterday. They’ll get Michigan, Ohio State, or Penn State in the championship game next weekend. Husky fans are rooting for the Golden Gophers here. A victory over the Badgers would really weaken Wisconsin’s stature going into next weekend no matter whether they win or lose the Big Ten championship.

Don’t sleep on this one. The Gophers are better than you think. They have a pair of huge WRs, Drew Wolitarsky (6-3, 225) and Rashad Still (6-5, 205), who present a classic x-factor dimension in a game in which they are big underdogs. I’m calling the Gophers in the straight-up upset.

#13 Auburn at #1 Alabama

We want ‘Bama. Literally.

South Carolina at #4 Clemson

The Tigers seem to be the committee’s favorite team so far this season. An honest assessment of their schedule doesn’t result in a solid justification of keeping them ahead of UW in the playoff rankings. A Clemson loss at home against a barely eligible SEC in-state rival would be make that honest assessment moot and put the playoff rankings into a bit of chaos. UW could well jump into the top three, and open a path into the top two, in that scenario.

Root for chaos.

#22 Utah at #9 Colorado

This one is pretty clear now. No matter how USC does hosting Notre Dame, Colorado will be a higher ranked team should they beat a ranked Utah opponent in their last game of this dream season. UW is better off playing the highest ranked team in the Pac-12 championship.

It is that simple. Root for Colorado.

#15 Florida at #14 Florida State

Okay. Let’s talk SEC. There is a clear two-SEC-team scenario that involves Alabama losing either today or in the SEC championship. In the latter case, Florida would be the SEC champs and their playoff entry. That would be a problem in UW’s playoff calculus.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: the best hope is chaos. A Seminole win over the Gators dilutes Florida’s case as an elite team by just a little bit and helps to mitigate a UW worst-case SEC scenario. In truth, it probably doesn’t matter. But every little bit helps.

Week 13 TV Guide

Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016
Matchup Time (ET) TV / Streaming
(3) Michigan at (2) Ohio State 12 p.m. ABC / ESPN3
Kentucky at (11) Louisville 12 p.m. ESPN / WatchESPN
Georgia Tech at Georgia 12 p.m. SECN / WatchESPN
Illinois at Northwestern 12 p.m. BTN / BTN2Go
Kansas at Kansas State 12 p.m. FS1 / FS Go
Purdue at Indiana 12 p.m. ESPNU / WatchESPN
Rutgers at Maryland 12 p.m. ESPNEWS / WatchESPN
Virginia at Virginia Tech 12 p.m. ESPN2 / WatchESPN
UCF at USF 12 p.m. CBSSN / CBSSports.com
Arkansas State at UL Lafayette 12 p.m. ASN / ESPN3
Syracuse at Pittsburgh 12:30 p.m. ACCN / ESPN3
Boston College at Wake Forest 3:00 p.m. RSN / ESPN3
(13) Auburn at (1) Alabama 3:30 p.m. CBS / CBSSports.com
Minnesota at (6) Wisconsin 3:30 p.m. BTN / BTN2Go
Michigan State at (7) Penn State 3:30 p.m. ESPN / WatchESPN
Notre Dame at (12) USC 3:30 p.m. ABC / WatchESPN
(18) West Virginia at Iowa State 3:30 p.m. FS1 / FS Go
(25) Navy at SMU 3:30 p.m. ESPNU / WatchESPN
Duke at Miami (FL) 3:30 p.m. ESPN2 / WatchESPN
FIU at Old Dominion 3:30 p.m. ESPN3
Mississippi State at Ole Miss 3:30 p.m. SECN / WatchESPN
San Jose State at Fresno State 3:30 p.m. CBSSN / CBSSports.com
South Alabama at Idaho 3:30 p.m. ASN / ESPN3
Oregon at Oregon State 4:00 p.m. Pac-12N / Pac-12.com
Appalachian State at New Mexico State 4:00 p.m. ESPN3 / AggieVision
Nevada at UNLV 4:00 p.m. ESPN3
Troy at Texas State 4:00 p.m. ESPN3
Tulane at UConn 4:00 p.m. ESPNEWS / WatchESPN
Florida Atlantic at Middle Tennessee 5:30 p.m. beIN Sports / beIN Sports Connect<
UCLA at California 7:00 p.m. ESPN2 / WatchESPN
Charlotte at UTSA 7:00 p.m. CampusInsiders
WKU at Marshall 7:00 p.m. ESPNU / WatchESPN
(22) Utah at (9) Colorado 7:30 p.m. FOX / FS Go
South Carolina at (4) Clemson 7:30 p.m. ESPN / WatchESPN
(17) Tennessee at Vanderbilt 7:30 p.m. SECN / WatchESPN
East Carolina at Temple 7:30 p.m. ESPNEWS / WatchESPN
(15) Florida at (14) Florida State 8:00 p.m. ABC / ESPN3
Rice at (24) Stanford 8:00 p.m. Pac-12N / Pac-12.com
North Texas at UTEP 8:00 p.m. CUSA.TV
Colorado State at San Diego State 9:00 p.m. CBSSN / CBSSports.com
Utah State at BYU 10:15 p.m. ESPNU / WatchESPN
Wyoming at New Mexico 10:15 p.m. ESPN2 / WatchESPN
UMass at Hawaii 11:00 p.m. Oceanic PPV