Northwestern was no doubt the biggest winner of Week 12. The challenge for me was finding the other four teams to round out this article, since the Wildcats’ monster win over Wisconsin all but locked up the B1G West. If they win out and defeat Ohio State in the title game, they will likely be in the College Football Playoff.
Pretty strange, right?
Let’s dive into the 5 biggest winners from Week 12:
Anytime you win in double-overtime you’ve gotta be happy. The Golden Hurricane is 5-1, ranked, and the biggest threat to the dominant Cincinnati Bearcats (more on them in a minute). Making the win even sweeter was that (1) they forced overtime on a hail mary and (2) they won on a walk-off pick-six. Party time!
The LSU Tigers have to be happy about their win too, because nobody can face Arkansas anymore without a fight. There’s a large gap between 3-3 and 2-4, and the Tigers got one in the win column at the right time, since Texas A&M awaits this Saturday.
There’s really only one Pac-12 team that can make the CFP, and it’s an 7-0 Pac-12 champion Oregon squad. They can’t control how many games they get in, but they can control the games they do. In other words, they’ve been winning. Honestly, though, the competition probably isn’t good enough to launch the Ducks into the playoff unless something crazy happens. Regardless, they needed to survive against UCLA and they did, just barely holding on.
This team is taking UCF’s spot in the best Group of Five talk, and they further proved that by earning a big road win over the Knights on Saturday night. They’ve probably only got the Tulsa game and the AAC championship left, but if they win both they’ll be in line for a shiny bowl.
Now here’s the team that hit the jackpot. The Northwestern Wildcats found a way to get it done against Wisconsin, improving to 5-0 with three easy games the only thing separating them from the B1G Championship game. To win the West they had to beat the mighty Wisconsin badgers and their stud quarterback Graham Mertz. Mission accomplished.
Congratulations, Northwestern. You’re the biggest winner of Week 12.