The regular season has come to a close. Let’s take a look at Auburn’s weekly outlook according to the experts at College Football News.
Auburn closed the regular season on Saturday by falling to rival Alabama, 49-27. Auburn had a great day running the football, as it posted 318 rushing yards. Running back Jarquez Hunter and quarterback Robby Ashford each rushed for more than 100 yards, posting 134 and 121 yards, respectively.
Ashford rushed for two scores, becoming the first Tiger since interim head coach Cadillac Williams in 2003 to rush for multiple touchdowns.
The loss dropped Auburn’s record to 5-7. Despite not gaining bowl eligibility, College Football News wrote there is still a way for the Tigers to go bowling.
How did Auburn’s loss to Alabama affect its placement within College Football News’ rankings and bowl projections? Here’s a look at where Auburn lands ahead of “Championship Saturday.”
Overall Ranking: No. 49
Austin Perryman/AU Athletics
Despite a loss to Alabama last Saturday, Auburn remains at No. 49 in this week’s overall rankings.
The win over Auburn did not aid Alabama, as it remains No. 8 in this week’s rankings. The Crimson Tide received help in the College Football Playoff rankings, however. LSU and Clemson lost their Week 13 games, helping Alabama rise to the No. 6 slot heading into championship Saturday.
SEC rank: No. 12
Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports
Auburn’s loss may not have affected its’ overall ranking, but it cost them a spot in the SEC rankings. Auburn falls to No. 12, joining Texas A&M and Vanderbilt as teams within the conference that finished the season 5-7.
Ole Miss owns the biggest drop of the week, falling four spots to No. 9 following its’ Egg Bowl loss to Mississippi State. South Carolina pulled off an upset over rival Clemson in Death Valley, boosting it three spots to No. 5. Kentucky also upset Louisville over the weekend, which moves it to No. 6.
Bowl Projection: There's still a chance
Todd Van Emst/AU Athletics
Auburn finished the regular season 5-7, which, by usual standards, is not a strong enough record to earn a bowl bid.
However, College Football News reports there’s a chance Auburn could make a bowl game via the Academic Progress Report.
If the bowls need 5-7 teams, APR determines the pecking order. Rice is the top APR-ranked 5-7 team, UNLV is second. If more teams are needed, Michigan State and Auburn – tied in APR behind the Owls and Rebels – would be possibilities.
With one team (Buffalo) still able to win a sixth game in the regular season and earn bowl eligibility this weekend, there are three unfilled bowl spots. So at least two, and possibly, three of those APR programs could receive invites.