Russell Athletic Bowl Projections Round-Up, Week 13
Phil Steele (Phil Steele’s College Football Preview) – Clemson vs. Kansas State
Brett McMurphy (ESPN) – Duke vs. Oklahoma
Mark Schlabach (ESPN) – Notre Dame vs. Oklahoma
Stewart Mandel (Fox Sports) – Clemson vs. Kansas State
David M. Hale (ESPN ACC Blog)/Jake Trotter (Big 12 Blog) – Notre Dame vs. Oklahoma
Jerry Palm (CBSSports) – Clemson vs. Oklahoma
Bill Bender (Sporting News) – Louisville vs. Oklahoma
Brant Parsons (Orlando Sentinel) – Georgia Tech vs. Oklahoma
The Oklahoma Sooners are the most popular choice to play in the Russell Athletic Bowl heading into week 13 of the season. The Sooners bounced back from a loss to knock off Texas Tech on the road last week, 42-30, earning a selection from six of eight media members.
The ACC’s representative in the game is wide open among the media, with Clemson coming in at the top with three picks, while Notre Dame and Kansas State each received two. The Tigers lost to Georgia Tech 28-6 last week, putting them two games back of Florida State in the ACC Atlantic Division with two to play.
Notre Dame suffered its third loss in its last four games, surrendering a fourth quarter lead and losing to Northwestern in overtime. Phil Steele and Stewart Mandel kept Kansas State in their picks this week following last week’s bye.
Georgia Tech, Louisville and Duke all received one selection. Georgia Tech received its first mention in the projections since week 7 after their victory over Clemson. The Yellow Jackets have not lost in three Orlando bowl appearances and were 51-14 victors over Syracuse in the 2004 Champs Sports Bowl (now Russell Athletic Bowl) during their last visit.
Louisville remained in the projections, earning a spot in Bill Bender’s projections this week following their 38-17 win against Boston College. The Blue Devils received their second loss on the season, falling to Virginia Tech 17-16 to give Georgia Tech a two-game advantage in the ACC Coastal Division.
Six of the seven teams in the projections are ranked in this week’s College Football Playoff Rankings with Kansas State coming in at No. 13 to lead the way. Both Louisville and Oklahoma reentered the rankings following wins, while Notre Dame dropped out of the rankings for the first time following their loss to Northwestern.