By Keith Antigiovanni
This week will determine the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) conference championships, bowl and BCS match-ups and the National Championship Game.
The #1 LSU Tigers (12-0) will face the #12 Georgia Bulldogs in the 20th annual SEC Championship game in Atlanta's Georgia Dome. If LSU wins, they will advance to New Orleans and play in the National Championship Game. If Georgia wins then who knows what the BCS computer will do but in either case the Alabama Crimson Tide has already earned a berth in the title game.
The #10 Oklahoma Sooners (9-2) are going up against the #3 Oklahoma State Cowboys (10-1) to decide the Big-12 championship which no longer has a championship game after the departure of Colorado and Nebraska. If the Sooners win it will be their eighth conference title in the Bob Stoops Era (12 years) but if OSU wins it will be their first conference title they shared the Big-8 in 1976.
The first PAC-12 and Big Ten championship games will be held this weekend. The #15 Wisconsin Badgers (10-2) and #13 Michigan State Spartans (10-2) will square-off at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The winner will earn the Big Ten BCS berth. In the PAC-12 the #9 Oregon Ducks (10-2) host the UCLA Bruins (6-6). The Bruins are in the title game because of USC's probationary status and were soundly defeated by the Trojans 50-0 the week before. The result was Bruin Head Coach Rick Neuheisel's firing on Monday.
The Bruins will have a chance to pull of a major upset and can knock Oregon out of a BCS Bowl game.
The ACC Championship Game will be held in Charlotte on saturday and will pit the #21 Clemson Tigers (9-3) versus the #5 Virginia Tech Hokies (10-1). Clemson was undefeated thru the first eight weeks but finished poorly. However the Tigers were able to clinch a division title for the second time in three years.
Virginia Tech will be making their fifth conference title game appearance and have won in three previous tries (2007, 2008, 2010). The Hokies have a chance at the National Championship game if they win and LSU loses but would have to win convincingly against Clemson.
The #6 Houston Cougars (12-0) also have a chance at a BCS Bowl if they can beat #24 Southern Mississippi (10-2) in the Conference USA Championship Game. The Cougars also appeared in the 2006 and 2009 Conference title games with a win in 2006 over Southern Miss.