Week 13 games to watch:
No. 8 Penn State (9-1) at No. 2 Ohio State (10-0), Saturday, Fox, 9 a.m. PST
The only game between teams ranked in the College Football Playoff top 25 is getting all of this week’s hype, to the point that ESPN’s “College GameDay” and Fox’s “Big Noon Kickoff” preview shows will both be at Ohio Stadium. The competition between Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and Lee Corso and Urban Meyer, Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart for Saturday morning football supremacy is likely to be more entertaining than the game. Ohio State is clearly the better team and has been all season, plus it gets defensive end Chase Young, a Heisman Trophy candidate, back from suspension. If Penn State somehow pulls the upset, it will blow up the playoff bracket, so it’s worth keeping an eye on for that alone.
Texas A&M (7-3) at No. 4 Georgia (9-1), Saturday, CBS, 12:30 p.m. PST
The Bulldogs seem like a totally different team than the one that fell on its face against South Carolina. They’ve won four in a row, including victories against Florida and at Auburn, showing they’re deserving of the last playoff spot. Texas A&M at least has the potential to keep this close with quarterback Kellen Mond leading the offense, and if the Aggies pull off a stunner, Georgia is likely eliminated from the playoff with its second loss.
UCLA (4-6) at No. 23 USC (7-4), Saturday, ABC, 12:30 p.m.
Hello, awkward tension. There will be a contingent of USC fans in the Coliseum that would be able to live with a loss to UCLA, as crazy as that may sound, because it would almost certainly lead to the firing of embattled coach Clay Helton. The Trojans have other plans, though, as they look to finish with three straight wins and keep their faint Pac-12 South hopes alive. UCLA needs to win its last two to become bowl eligible and would be favored over California if it can pull off this upset.
Texas (6-4) at No. 14 Baylor (9-1), Saturday, FS1, 12:30 p.m. PST
Baylor is likely out of the national championship picture after blowing a 28-3 lead last week to Oklahoma in Waco, Texas. But the Bears still have so much on the line this season, starting with a chance to beat Texas and send the Longhorns to 6-5. Is Texas back under Tom Herman? It certainly doesn’t seem so after another loss last week to Iowa State. Win or lose Saturday, Baylor will have its rematch against Oklahoma in the Big 12 championship.
No. 6 Oregon (9-1) at Arizona State (5-5), Saturday, ABC, 4:30 p.m. PST
If this game were played on paper, Oregon is the better team and should continue its march toward a possible playoff berth. But this game will be played under the lights at Sun Devil Stadium in the desert, where chaos always feels ready to strike. This will be played in primetime on ABC with Herbstreit and Chris Fowler on the call, which will give the Ducks a shot to put on a show for a national audience. Arizona State, with Jayden Daniels, Eno Benjamin and Brandon Aiyuk, has the firepower to keep the pressure on Justin Herbert and the Ducks’ offense.