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  • After Week 7's upsets forced us to forget what we thought we knew about the playoff race, the New Year's Six lineup looks significantly different in this week's bowl projections.
By Eric Single
October 17, 2017

While the Pac-12 and ACC were thrown into a state of upheaval by the upsets that felled four top-10 teams last weekend, the SEC merely took a glancing blow. Auburn’s loss to LSU casts a little more doubt on its ability to knock Alabama off its perch atop the SEC West on the final Saturday of the regular season (the victorious Tigers’ Nov. 11 trip to Tuscaloosa had already largely been written off), but it seems clear now that the Crimson Tide’s only true obstacle on their way to a fourth consecutive College Football Playoff is Georgia, which could take a matching 12–0 record into the SEC title game. If that game comes down to the final minute, the committee would be hard-pressed to leave the loser out of the playoff.

The SEC’s middle and bottom tiers might be weaker than usual, but that shouldn’t take away from what Georgia and Alabama have done to their competition so far in league play, reaching a combined 8–0 record by a total score of 363–76. If the ACC and Pac-12 continue to cannibalize their leading contenders while the Bulldogs and Tide continue to cruise, we could see a two-bid league for the first time in playoff history.

Below, the latest look at the projected (but far from official) matchups for all 39 bowl games leading up to the College Football Playoff national championship in Atlanta on Jan. 8. 

Saturday, Dec. 16

R + L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, New Orleans (1 p.m., ESPN)
Sun Belt vs. C-USA
Louisiana-Monroe vs. UAB

AutoNation Cure Bowl, Orlando, Fla. (2:30 p.m., CBSSN)
AAC vs. Sun Belt
Temple vs. Georgia State

Las Vegas Bowl, Las Vegas (3:30 p.m., ABC)
​MWC vs. Pac-12
Colorado State vs. Oregon

Gildan New Mexico Bowl, Albuquerque (4:30 p.m., ESPN)
C-USA vs. MWC
UTSA vs. Wyoming

Raycom Media Camelia Bowl, Montgomery, Ala. (8 p.m., ESPN)
MAC vs. Sun Belt
Akron vs. Troy

Tuesday, Dec. 19

Boca Raton Bowl, Boca Raton, Fla. (7 p.m., ESPN)
AAC vs. C-USA
Tulane vs. Western Kentucky

Wednesday, Dec. 20

Frisco Bowl, Frisco, Texas (8 p.m., ESPN)
AAC vs. C-USA/MAC/MWC/BYU
Houston vs. North Texas

Thursday, Dec. 21

Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl, St. Petersburg, Fla. (8 p.m., ESPN)
C-USA vs. AAC
Marshall vs. South Florida

Friday, Dec. 22

Bahamas Bowl, Nassau, Bahamas (12:30 p.m., ESPN)
C-USA vs. MAC
Florida Atlantic vs. Northern Illinois

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, Boise (4 p.m., ESPN)
MAC vs. MWC
Ohio vs. Boise State

Saturday, Dec. 23

Birmingham Bowl, Birmingham, Ala. (12 p.m., ESPN)
AAC vs. SEC
Memphis vs. Tennessee

Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl, Fort Worth, Texas (3:30 p.m., ESPN)
Army vs. C-USA
Army vs. Southern Miss

Dollar General Bowl, Mobile, Ala. (7 p.m., ESPN)
MAC vs. Sun Belt
Toledo vs. Appalachian State

Sunday, Dec. 24

Hawaii Bowl, Honolulu, (8:30 p.m., ESPN)
AAC vs. MWC
SMU vs. San Diego State

Tuesday, Dec. 26

Heart of Dallas Bowl, Dallas (1:30 p.m., ESPN)
Big 12 vs. Big Ten
Kansas State vs. Nebraska

Quick Lane Bowl, Detroit (5:15 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. Big Ten
Duke vs. Western Michigan

Cactus Bowl, Phoenix (9 p.m., ESPN)
Big 12 vs. Pac-12
Texas Tech vs. Utah

Wednesday, Dec. 27

Independence Bowl, Shreveport, La. (1:30 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. SEC
Boston College vs. Mississippi State

New Era Pinstripe Bowl, New York (5:15 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. Big Ten
Syracuse vs. Purdue

Foster Farms Bowl, Santa Clara, Calif. (8 p.m., FOX)
Big Ten vs. Pac-12
Northwestern vs. Washington

Texas Bowl, Houston (9 p.m., ESPN)
Big 12 vs. SEC
Texas vs. Texas A&M

Thursday, Dec. 28

Military Bowl Presented by Northrop Grumman, Annapolis, Md. (1:30 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. AAC
Wake Forest vs. Navy

Camping World Bowl, Orlando, Fla. (5:15 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. Big 12
Georgia Tech vs. Oklahoma State

Valero Alamo Bowl, San Antonio, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
Pac-12 vs. Big 12
Washington State vs. West Virginia

San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl, San Diego (9 p.m., FS1)
Big Ten vs. Pac-12
Michigan vs. Stanford

Friday, Dec. 29

Belk Bowl, Charlotte, N.C. (1 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. SEC
Virginia vs. South Carolina

Hyundai Sun Bowl, El Paso, Texas (2 p.m., CBS)
ACC vs. Pac-12
Florida State vs. Arizona

Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl, Nashville, Tenn. (4:30 p.m., ESPN)
SEC vs. Big Ten or ACC
Vanderbilt vs. Iowa

Arizona Bowl, Tucson, Ariz. (5:30 p.m., CBSSN)
Sun Belt vs. MWC
Arkansas State vs. Fresno State

Saturday, Dec. 30

TaxSlayer Bowl, Jacksonville, Fla. (12 p.m., ESPN)
SEC vs. Big Ten or ACC
Florida vs. Virginia Tech

AutoZone Liberty Bowl, Memphis, Tenn. (12:30 p.m., ABC)
Big 12 vs. SEC
Iowa State vs. LSU

Monday, Jan. 1, 2018

Outback Bowl, Tampa, Fla. (12 p.m., ESPN2)
Big Ten vs. SEC
Michigan State vs. Kentucky

Citrus Bowl, Orlando, Fla. (1 p.m., ABC)
SEC vs. ACC/Big Ten
Auburn vs. NC State

New Year's Six Bowls

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, Arlington, Texas (Dec. 29, 8:30 p.m., ESPN)
At-large vs. At-large
Oklahoma vs. Notre Dame

PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, Glendale, Ariz. (Dec. 30, 4 p.m., ESPN)
At-large vs. At-large
Ohio State vs. USC

Capital One Orange Bowl, Miami Gardens, Fla. (Dec. 30, 8 p.m., ESPN)
ACC vs. Big Ten, SEC or Notre Dame
Clemson vs. Wisconsin

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, Atlanta (Jan. 1, 12:30 p.m., ESPN)
At-large vs. At-Large
Miami (FL) vs. UCF

Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual, Pasadena, Calif. (Jan. 1, 5 p.m., ESPN)
CFP semifinalist vs. CFP semifinalist
Penn State vs. Georgia

Allstate Sugar Bowl, New Orleans (Jan. 1, 8:45 p.m., ESPN)
CFP semifinalist vs. CFP semifinalist
Alabama vs. TCU

College Football Playoff National Championship, Atlanta (Jan. 8, 8 p.m., ESPN)
CFP semifinal winner vs. CFP semifinal winner

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