It's NCAA football rivalry week, and the action has already started with multiple College Football Playoff Top 25 games prior to Saturday's traditional kickoffs.
Some teams cost themselves dearly with losses, while others improved their stock.
The Baylor Bears blew their outside chance at the CFP with a double-overtime loss to the TCU Horned Frogs on Friday.
The Iowa Hawkeyes, on the other hand, strengthened their case for a CFP spot by knocking off the Nebraska Cornhuskers to remain undefeated.
There are plenty more games to be played, so let's take a look at the latest CFP rankings with updated records and a sneak peek of what's ahead in Week 13.
|Week 13 CFP Standings: Updated Results and Previews|
|Rank||Team||Week 13 Result|
|1||Clemson Tigers (11-0)||Nov. 28 @ South Carolina|
|2||Alabama Crimson Tide (10-1)||Nov. 28 @ Auburn Tigers|
|3||Oklahoma Sooners (10-1)||Nov. 28 @ No. 11 Oklahoma State Cowboys|
|4||Iowa Hawkeyes (12-0)||Defeated Nebraska Cornhuskers, 28-20|
|5||Michigan State Spartans (10-1)||Nov. 28 vs. Penn State Nittany Lions|
|6||Notre Dame Fighting Irish (10-1)||Nov. 28 @ No. 9 Stanford Cardinal|
|7||Baylor Bears (9-2)||Lost to No. 9 TCU Horned Frogs, 28-21|
|8||Ohio State Buckeyes (10-1)||Nov. 28 @ No. 10 Michigan Wolverines|
|9||Stanford Cardinal (9-2)||Nov. 28 vs. No. 6 Notre Dame Fighting Irish|
|10||Michigan Wolverines (9-2)||Nov. 28 vs. No. 8 Ohio State Buckeyes|
|11||Oklahoma State Cowboys (10-1)||Nov. 28 vs No. 3 Oklahoma Sooners|
|12||Florida Gators (10-1)||Nov. 28 vs. No. 13 Florida State Seminoles|
|13||Florida State Seminoles (9-2)||Nov. 28 @ No. 12 Florida Gators|
|14||North Carolina Tar Heels (10-1)||Nov. 28 @ North Carolina State Wolfpack|
|15||Navy Midshipmen (9-2)||Lost to Houston Cougars, 52-31|
|16||Northwestern Wildcats (9-2)||Nov. 28 vs. Illinois Fighting Illini|
|17||Oregon Ducks (9-3)||Defeated Oregon State Beavers, 52-42|
|18||Ole Miss Rebels (8-3)||Nov. 28 @ No. 21 Mississippi State Bulldogs|
|19||TCU Horned Frogs (10-2)||Defeated No. 7 Baylor Bears, 28-21|
|20||Washington State Cougars (8-4)||Lost to Washington Huskies, 45-10|
|21||Mississippi State Bulldogs (8-3)||Nov. 28 vs No. 18 Ole Miss Rebels|
|22||UCLA Bruins (8-3)||Nov. 28 @ USC Trojans|
|23||Utah Utes (8-3)||Nov. 28 vs. Colorado Buffaloes|
|24||Toledo Rockets (9-2)||Lost to Western Michigan Broncos, 35-30|
|25||Temple Owls (9-2)||Nov. 28 vs. Connecticut Huskies|
|ESPN.com/Records as of 11/28/2015|
It's Must-Win Time
Right now a loss would hurt any team's stock, but the Clemson Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide could possibly weather the storm of a Week 13 defeat. Some other teams that still have a shot at the playoff don't have that luxury.
No. 3 Oklahoma Sooners: A two-loss team from the Big 12 Conference doesn't stand a chance, especially when one of the losses was to the 4-7 Texas Longhorns.
No. 5 Michigan State Spartans: A loss against the Penn State Nittany Lions would be their second against an unranked team. That won’t cut it.
No. 6 Notre Dame Fighting Irish: They dropped two spots this week after winning; imagine what a loss would do to them. Although, a win against the No. 9 Stanford Cardinal would go a long way toward Notre Dame moving back into the CFP rankings.
No. 8 Ohio State Buckeyes: If Ohio State beats Michigan and then tops Iowa in the Big Ten Championship game—should Michigan State lose Saturday—a CFP spot is possible. However, a loss in Week 13 would mean it is just another Top 25 team.
Undefeated Season on the Line
The Clemson Tigers have not lost this season and have been the No. 1 team in the country the past four weeks. So why, then, would the South Carolina Gamecocks, who lost to The Citadel in Week 12, pose a threat to Clemson's first undefeated season since 1981?
In reality, they shouldn't. However, Clemson has had some close calls this season against lesser competition.
The Tigers skirted by an 0-2—at the time—Louisville Cardinals team, 20-17, and let the 3-8 Syracuse Orange hang around in a 37-27 victory two weeks ago.
There also is the "Clemsoning" label the Tigers have had to deal with, which is slang for a team always finding a way to lose in big games. Yet, they proved that wrong in their biggest test of the season, defeating Notre Dame, 24-22, earlier in the season.
While the 3-8 Gamecocks are bad, ranking toward the bottom of the SEC with the Missouri Tigers and Vanderbilt Commodores in nearly every offensive category, they did hand the No. 14 North Carolina Tar Heels their only loss of the season and strange things can happen in rivalry games—especially when the favored team is on the road.
Despite the poor season, South Carolina isn't backing down from this tough challenge and showed how it felt about the Tigers, per this tweet from Sports Illustrated:
Quarterback Deshaun Watson—32 total touchdowns—and the Tigers rank toward the top of the ACC in nearly every offensive category, which won't bode well for South Carolina.
The Tigers will win this game, but with the pressure of the ACC and national championships on the line, look for it to be closer than the 15.5-point opening spread, per OddsShark.com.
Result: Clemson wins, 31-23
The Big 12 Title Belongs To...
The Bedlam Series matchup between the Oklahoma Sooners and Oklahoma State Cowboys has now become the de facto Big 12 Championship game.
Oklahoma has dominated the series, leading 84-18-7, but the teams have split the past four matchups, and the game is old hat for the two veteran coaches, per ESPN Stats & Info:
That intensifies the game itself, but the fact both have a chance at the CFP makes this matchup even more intriguing.
The CFP committee showed last season that a one-loss Big 12 champion is not guaranteed to be in the CFP, and it wasn't until this week that the Sooners came in at No. 3 in the rankings.
The Bedlam Series loser will have two defeats, and has no chance at the national title.
So buckle up, and enjoy this one between two teams averaging more than 43 points per game in Big 12 play.
Last season, a 61-58 Baylor victory over TCU essentially cost the Horned Frogs—and the Big 12—a shot at the national title.
So for old time's sake, how about a shootout this year that determines the conference champion and possibly a spot in the CFP?
The Sooners have been scoring in bunches since the loss to Texas and will prove to be too much for a Cowboys defense that has allowed 94 more points than the Sooners' in conference play.
Result: Oklahoma wins, 55-52.