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College Football Bowl Projections | Brett McMurphy’s Week 14 Predictions

Week 14 College Football Projections

With less than a week to go until the official bowl bids are announced, it’s still unclear how many teams are eligible for the bowl.

We pause our weekly bowl screenings for breaking news: Action Network is reporting that Middle Tennessee and San Diego State are heading to the Hawaii Bowl…now back to the bowl screenings.

It’s unclear how many teams are eligible as Buffalo (5-6) takes on Akron in a Friday game postponed due to weather. It’s simple for Buffalo – win, and the Bulls are the 80th bowl-eligible team.

If Buffalo wins, there will be two five-win teams needed to take the bottom two spots. A win in Akron means three five-win teams will be needed to fill the 82 spots.

The order of teams to five wins is based on Academic Progress Rate (APR) scores. Rice had the highest APR score of five-win teams, followed by UNLV and Auburn. Regardless of the Buffalo-Akron result, Rice is guaranteed to have a bowl. UNLV has the second highest APR, followed by Auburn.

If Buffalo loses, then UNLV and Auburn would be the next to receive bowl offers.

However, New Mexico State Athletic Director Mario Moccia told Action Network that the school filed an appeal today with the NCAA Football Oversight Committee, seeking a waiver that would allow 5-6 NMSU to play in a bowl.

New Mexico State is requesting a waiver because the Aggies were unable to play their full 12-game schedule due to tragic circumstances, involving the death of a San Jose State player and the cancellation later of the NMSU-SJSU game.

New Mexico State tried unsuccessfully to find another FBS opponent. Learn more about New Mexico’s statewide appeal efforts.

If NCAA rules favor New Mexico State, the Aggies would be selected ahead of Rice, UNLV and Auburn. Regardless of whether New Mexico State receives a waiver or not, Rice will still be tied to the bowl. For UNLV and Auburn, they will have to wait to see (a) if Buffalo wins, and (b) if New Mexico State’s appeal is successful.

As for my bowl projections this week, I project Buffalo will become the 80th bowl-eligible team, leaving spots for two five-win teams. Until the NCAA rules on the New Mexico State appeal, I put Rice and UNLV in my bowl projections.

After Tuesday’s penultimate college football playoff standings, I’ll have a special bowl projection update on Wednesday. And plan accordingly – all bowl matchups will be officially announced on Sunday.

Here are this week’s projections with current college football betting power odds from Action Network lead writer Collin Wilson.

CFP National Championship Prediction

  • CFP National Championship

College Football Playoff Semifinal Projections

New Year’s Six Bowl Games

Projections for all other bowls

* The highest-rated champion from the Five Five conferences (American, Conference USA, Mid-American, Mountain West, and Sun Belt) will be selected to play in the Cotton Bowl if they do not qualify for the College Football Playoffs.

**A highlighted team name means the team is already confirmed for their respective bowl.

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