Certainly the most important game as far as LSU’s bowl chances are concerned is the Tigers’ home finale Saturday against Ole Miss (2:30 p.m., CBS). But there are a number of other games that could impact where LSU ends up spending the holidays.
Here’s a primer:
Western Carolina at Alabama (SEC), 11:21 a.m.; Jacksonville State at Florida, noon; Wofford at South Carolina, noon; Georgia Southern at Georgia 12:30 p.m. (last three on PPV): None of these games likely to result in an upset, but if any of them did it would take each of those schools out of likely BCS contention.
Iowa at Michigan (ESPN), 11 a.m.: If the Wolverines could win out and eventually capture the Big Ten title, it would put Michigan in the Rose Bowl and pretty much cancel out the prospect of a rematch with Notre Dame.
Kansas State at Baylor (ESPN), 7 p.m.: Currently No. 1 in the BCS, an upset loss by the Wildcats would benefit LSU in that it would set up the opportunity for an Oregon-Notre Dame BCS championship game. With Notre Dame in the BCS title game, LSU’s chances of grabbing an at-large spot in the Rose Bowl would be greatly enhanced.
Stanford at Oregon (ABC), 7 p.m.: The No. 2 Ducks can be LSU’s best friend in terms of its Rose Bowl hopes by clearing out the three remaining contenders to be the Pac-12 replacement pick: Stanford, Oregon State next week and the Pac-12 South champion. Tough road for the Ducks, though.
Wake Forest at Notre Dame (NBC), 2:30 p.m.: An upset loss by Notre Dame and a loss next week at USC would likely drop the Irish behind a 10-2 LSU team in the final BCS standings. If LSU can get into the BCS top four it would likely be an automatic at-large selection, but at least one of the unbeatens would have to lose twice.
Sam Houston State at Texas A&M (ESPN3.com), 2:30 p.m.: The Aggies are a hot team suddenly as far as BCS bowl prospects are concerned, but not if they drop a third game. The Bearkats out of the Southland Conference are a substantial underdog but at 8-2 are not incapable of playing up to the competition.
Oklahoma at West Virginia (Fox), 6 p.m.: If Nebraska is the Big Ten champion, the Rose Bowl could look to Oklahoma as a replacement pick to renew their old Big 12/Big Eight rivalry. A third loss would send the Sooners tumbling out of BCS bowl contention.