LSU has one regular season game left. That means Saturday is the last chance to make a statement before bowl destinations are determined the following weekend.
LSU came in at No. 15 in the playoff poll last week. With Oregon State, No. 11, losing to Washington, the Tigers could jump a spot in this week’s rankings.
That would give LSU an outsider’s chance at the NY6 entering rivalry week.
The Sugar and Rose will serve as the playoff this year, making most of the NY6 bids at-large spots.
Here’s what LSU needs to happen over the next two weeks to have a shot at a premier bowl game.
Beat Texas A&M
This goes without saying. LSU needs to beat Texas A&M.
That would put the Tigers at 9-3, the same record they were in 2018 when they still managed to earn a NY6 bid.
The only difference is that team had signature wins, including beating a top-10 Auburn team on the road and upsetting No. 2 Georgia at home.
This year’s squad doesn’t have the same resume, but the continued success of Missouri has given LSU one of the most impressive wins this year, considering LSU beat Missouri by double-digits on the road.
Ole Miss loses to Mississippi State
LSU needs some chaos. The good news is the Egg Bowl often provides it.
Ole Miss is a 13.5-point favorite and MSU is led by an interim coach, so the odds are in the Rebels’ favor. But this game tends to be close, no matter the strength of the teams.
Even with three-losses, LSU could have trouble jumping Ole Miss. The Rebels beat LSU and both would be at 9-3.
But the committee could give less weight to that game, given it was in September.
Florida State and Louisville lose
This is significant because the ACC has an Orange Bowl tie-in. The highest-ranked non-playoff team from the ACC will get a bid.
If the ACC is knocked out of the playoff race, that could open up a spot in the NY6. FSU could get the Orange Bowl bid while a Louisville team with a weak schedule falls below LSU.
If FSU cruises to 13-0, the Noles will make the final four while another ACC team is put in the Orange Bowl, even if it’s ranked below LSU.
Oklahoma and Oregon State lose
Oregon State could fall below LSU this week, but a win over Oregon on Friday could boost the Beavers right back into NY6 contention.
In that case, Oregon would likely remain above LSU while Oregon State makes the jump, stealing a spot without opening another one in the process.
With Oklahoma, the path is simple. A three-loss Sooner team will fall below a 9-3 LSU team. The Sooners are hanging at No. 14 right now, but we’ll see how the committee feels about their close win over a bad BYU team.
A Penn State loss wouldn't hurt
This is unlikely, but it’s worth monitoring.
Penn State rolled through the rest of its schedule, going 8-1 against the spread in those nine wins.
This isn’t a team that loses games it’s supposed to win. And they’re supposed to win against a downtrodden Michigan State team on Friday night.
But if the Spartans somehow pull the upset, Penn State will be 9-3 and out of a New Year’s Six bowl.
This would really help LSU, given the Tigers need to get to No. 10 or No. 11 to have a real shot.