Entering this weekend, 72 teams have clinched bowl eligibility. Seven teams — BYU, Hawaii, Louisiana, Miami, Oklahoma State, South Carolina and Toledo — joined the party thanks to Week 12 wins. On Tuesday night, Miami (Ohio) became the latest bowl eligible team by beating Ball State 42-21.
While those teams reached the necessary six-win plateau (seven wins for Hawaii because of its 13-game schedule) in Week 12, 15 others missed out on a chance to do so by losing and seven teams registered their fifth win to keep their bowl hopes alive. On top of that, there are two other teams with four wins and two games left on the schedule.
So what does all of this mean?
There are 72 teams who have clinched, 18 more that can do so in Week 13 and two others with a shot in Week 14.
With 40 bowl games and 80 total bowl slots, it’s pretty likely that some bowl-eligible teams will not be invited to a postseason game. That happened to three teams — Buffalo, UTSA and Western Michigan — in 2017. It could be more this year.
Below is a full breakdown of the bowl picture, organized by conference.
[Related: Post Week 12 bowl projections]
These 72 teams have clinched bowl eligibility
AAC (6): Central Florida, Cincinnati, Houston, Memphis, South Florida, Temple
ACC (9): Boston College, Clemson, Duke, Georgia Tech, Miami, NC State, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Virginia
Big 12 (5): Iowa State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, West Virginia
Big Ten (7): Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin
C-USA (6): Florida International, Louisiana Tech, Marshall, Middle Tennessee, North Texas, UAB
Independent (3): Army, BYU, Notre Dame
MAC (7): Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, Miami (Ohio), Northern Illinois, Ohio, Toledo, Western Michigan
Mountain West (6): Boise State, Fresno State, Hawaii, Nevada, San Diego State, Utah State
Pac-12 (7): Arizona State, Cal, Oregon, Stanford, Utah, Washington, Washington State
SEC (10): Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, South Carolina, Texas A&M
Sun Belt (6): Appalachian State, Arkansas State, Georgia Southern, Louisiana Lafayette, Louisiana Monroe, Troy
These 19 teams can reach six wins in Week 13
AAC (2): SMU, Tulane
- SMU can reach six wins with a road win over two-win Tulsa.
- Tulane hasn’t played in a bowl since 2013 but can become eligible with a home win over Navy.
ACC (2): Florida State, Wake Forest
- Florida State can extend its bowl streak to 37 years by beating rival Florida. FSU hasn’t missed a bowl game since 1981.
- Wake Forest needs a road win over Duke to be eligible for the third straight season.
Big 12 (3): Baylor, Kansas State, TCU, Texas Tech
- Baylor and Texas Tech play each other with a bowl berth on the line.
- Kansas State can extend its bowl streak to nine years with a win over Iowa State.
- TCU needs a home win over Oklahoma State.
Big Ten (3): Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Purdue
- Indiana and Purdue play for the Old Oaken Bucket and bowl eligibility.
- After Saturday’s OT loss to Ohio State, Maryland needs a road win over Penn State.
- Minnesota needs a road win over Wisconsin.
Conference USA (2): Florida Atlantic, Southern Mississippi
- Lane Kiffin can bring FAU to another bowl by beating Charlotte at home.
- Southern Miss, which will not play a 12th game, needs a road win over UTEP.
MAC (1): Miami (Ohio)
- Miami beat Ball State, 42-21, on Tuesday night to reach six wins and become bowl eligible.
Mountain West (1): Wyoming
- Wyoming, which travels to New Mexico on Saturday, has never played in a bowl game three years in a row.
Pac-12 (3): Arizona, Colorado, USC
- Arizona can clinch a bowl with a win over Arizona State in the Territorial Cup.
- Colorado, losers of six straight, needs a road win over Cal.
- USC (5-6) hosts No. 3 Notre Dame. The Trojans haven’t had a losing record since 2000.
SEC (1): Tennessee, Vanderbilt
- Vanderbilt hosts rival Tennessee with bowl eligibility on the line.
Sun Belt (1): Coastal Carolina
- This is the first season Coastal Carolina can play in a bowl as an FBS program. It needs a road win over South Alabama to become eligible.
These four-win teams are still alive
Akron: Akron (4-6) travels to Ohio on Friday before a Dec. 1 trip to South Carolina. Both the Zips and Gamecocks had a game canceled because of weather, so they scheduled a 12th game.
Virginia Tech: The Hokies (4-6), holders of a 25-year bowl streak, host rival Virginia on Friday. If the Hokies beat Virginia for the 15th straight time, a 12th game will be added to the schedule on Dec. 1 against Marshall in an effort to keep the bowl streak alive. If the Hokies lose to Virginia, the Marshall game will not be played.
Week 12’s impact
Eliminated from bowl contention in Week 12 (3): Air Force, Charlotte, Illinois
Failed to clinch bowl eligibility in Week 12 (15): Arizona, Baylor, Coastal Carolina, Colorado, Florida Atlantic, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Purdue, SMU, Tennessee, Texas Tech, Tulane, USC, Wake Forest
Kept bowl hopes alive in Week 12 (7): Florida State, Kansas State, Miami (Ohio), Southern Mississippi, TCU, Vanderbilt, Wyoming
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