Nov 29, 2021 - Sports

A Rivalry Week for the ages

Fans celebrate after Michigan beat Ohio State on Saturday.

Photo: Steven King/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Rivalry Week delivered an epic end to the regular season, headlined by three marquee matchups that shook up the College Football Playoff race ahead of next weekend's conference championships.

No. 5 Michigan 42, No. 2 Ohio State 27: Jim Harbaugh finally got his first win over the Buckeyes (1-5) and the Wolverines are likely one win away from their first CFP berth.

  • Stars: Michigan RB Hassan Haskins tied the school record with five rushing TD and DE Aidan Hutchinson notched three sacks, setting a single-season school record with 13.

No. 3 Alabama 24, Auburn 22: With 24 seconds left and their playoff hopes slipping away, Alabama QB Bryce Young tied the game with a 28-yard dime before ultimately winning in quadruple overtime.

  • Wild stat: Prior to Saturday, Auburn had won 118 consecutive games when leading by double digits in the fourth quarter.

No. 7 Oklahoma State 37, No. 10 Oklahoma 33: Bedlam lived up to its name, featuring a 100-yard kickoff return TD, two muffed punts that led to scores and a safety.

  • Streak over: The Cowboys beat the Sooners for the first time since 2014, and just the third time since 2002.
Georgia players celebrate
Photo: Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

More Rivalry Week: The full slate of games provided plenty more intrigue than just the three games above.

  • No. 1 Georgia 45, Georgia Tech 0: The Bulldogs are the first team since Texas in 1979 to allow 17 or fewer points in each of their first 12 games.
  • No. 20 NC State 34, UNC 30: The Wolfpack became the first team this season to win after trailing by at least nine points with less than 2:30 to play (0-451 previously).
  • No. 16 Iowa 28, Nebraska 21: The Cornhuskers are the first team in FBS history with nine single-digit losses in a season. Brutal.
  • Minnesota 23, No. 14 Wisconsin 13: After losing 14 straight meetings, the Golden Gophers have won two of the past four Battles for Paul Bunyan's Axe — college football's most-played rivalry (131 meetings).

What's next: Conference championship matchups are set. Depending how they play out, it's possible that Alabama, Clemson, Oklahoma and Ohio State — who've combined for 20 of the 28 CFP spots — will all miss the playoff.

  • SEC: No. 1 Georgia vs. No. 3 Alabama
  • Big Ten: No. 5 Michigan vs. No. 16 Iowa
  • Big 12: No. 7 Oklahoma State vs. No. 8 Baylor
  • ACC: No. 17 Pittsburgh vs. No. 18 Wake Forest
  • Pac-12: No. 11 Oregon vs. No. 19 Utah
  • American: No. 24 Houston at No. 4 Cincinnati
  • C-USA: Western Kentucky at No. 22 UTSA
  • MAC: Northern Illinois vs. Kent State
  • Sun Belt: Appalachian State at Louisiana
  • Mountain West: Utah State at No. 21 San Diego State
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