After 10 weeks of action-packed craziness, the roller coaster ride that is the 2015 college football season is inching closer and closer to its final stop: the College Football Playoff. However, before the “best” four teams in the country face off with college football supremacy on the line, we have to remember that there is still some big-time games to play. And these contests cannot be overlooked.
While the selection committee has released its latest edition of the College Football Playoff rankings, we all know those are subject to change on a weekly basis. If the country’s top teams wish to remain in contention for the sport’s ultimate prize, then they better be prepared to handle their business for the rest of the season. After all, one hiccup is all it takes to shatter the hopes and dreams of an entire fan base.
This upcoming week is filled with an abundance of great games. Yet, some matchups have greater implications than others. With that in mind, here’s a look at the four biggest college football games in Week 11.
1. (21) Memphis Tigers at (24) Houston Cougars
The Memphis Tigers hope to bounce back after their embarrassing 45-20 loss to Navy last week. Justin Fuente’s group may not be undefeated now, but they are still No. 21 in the country — per the latest CFP rankings — and find themselves with an opportunity to play spoiler to another upstart from the American Athletic Conference (AAC) in Tom Herman’s undefeated Houston squad. For the Cougars — currently 9-0, first place in the AAC West, and No. 24 in the CFP rankings — this is a chance to further prove their legitimacy among the college football elite. We certainly don’t want to miss this affair.
2. Oregon Ducks at (7) Stanford Cardinal
Unlike last season, the Stanford Cardinal have everything on the line when they square off with the Oregon Ducks in Week 11. The Cardinals enter this clash of Pac-12 heavyweights riding an eight-game winning streak and No. 7 ranking in the latest CFP standings. If this team wishes to remain in the hunt for a possible berth in the College Football Playoff, it will have to overcome a Ducks team with nothing left to lose. Mark Helfrich’s Oregon squad may not be the same since Marcus Mariota took his talents to the NFL, but it still has enough speed to cause problems for the Cardinal. This matchup is definitely worth watching.
3. (2) Alabama Crimson Tide at (17) Mississippi State Bulldogs
After cruising to a 30-16 victory over the LSU Tigers and climbing to the No. 2 spot in the latest College Football Playoff rankings, the Alabama Crimson Tide have every reason to feel good about themselves. However, just because this group looks like one of the two best teams in college football that doesn’t mean it can afford to get ahead of itself — especially when it has to face a quarterback with the caliber of No. 15, Dak Prescott. Through nine games, the senior QB for the No. 17 Mississippi State Bulldogs has thrown for 2,351 yards, 18 touchdowns, and just one interception, while also amassing 418 yards on the ground and 7 rushing scores. If anyone has the goods to topple the Tide, it’s him. The question is, will he be able to?
4. (12) Oklahoma Sooners at (6) Baylor Bears
The only way for the Baylor Bears to prove they deserve to be higher than No. 6 in the CFP rankings is by defeating a quality team. Week 11 provides them with that opportunity. The Oklahoma Sooners comes into the contest with an 8-1 record, a No. 12 CFP ranking, and an undeniable sense of legitimacy. If Art Briles and his high-scoring Baylor squad want some love from the selection committee, then taking it to Big Game Bob and the mighty Sooners is a good place to start.