2021 Week 12 Summary

Week 12 in the Group of Five (G5) saw the following breakdown of games:

  • 26 G5 Conference Games
  • 3 G5 vs P5 Games
  • 4 G5 vs G5 Non-Conference Games

Week twelve provided increased clarity in conference races.  Here is a summary of where conference races stand heading into the last week of the regular season.  In the American Athletic the championship game is set with Houston and Cincinnati clinching spots.  Cincinnati can clinch the home field for the game by beating third place East Carolina next week.  In Conference USA, UT San-Antonio will host the championship against the winner of the upcoming Western Kentucky and Marshall game.  In the MAC, Northern Illinois has clinched and will play the winner of the upcoming Kent State and Miami (OH) game.  The MAC Championship is a neutral site game, to be played at Ford Field in Detroit.

In the Sunbelt, Louisiana will host Appalachian State in a rematch of the 2018 and 2019 Sunbelt Championships (both won by Appalachian State in Boone, NC).  Both divisions of the Mountain West are still up for grabs. 

In the Mountain Division, three teams are tied at 5-2.  Air Force holds the head-to-head over Boise State, Utah State owns the head-to-head over Air Force, and Boise State owns the head-to-head over Utah State.  Air Force and Utah State will be favored in their final games against UNLV and New Mexico respectively.  Boise will face a difficult assignment facing west-leading San Diego State.  In the West Division, San Diego State clinches with a win over Boise State or a Fresno State loss to San Jose State.  Should the Aztecs fall to Boise and Fresno prevails, the Bulldogs would win the West.  At this juncture it looks as through the West winner will host the championship game. 

Winners

Cincinnati.  The Bearcats had been caught in a cycle of close games for the past few weeks, bringing some to believe they might stumble against a strong SMU squad.  Cincinnati puts those thoughts to rest early by jumping out toa 27-0 halftime lead and cruising to a 48-14 win.   In the process the Bearcats clinched a spot in the AAC Championship and should move into the #4 spot in the CFP rankings with Oregon losing. 

Louisiana. The Rajin Cajuns were 4-point underdogs on the road at Liberty.  They responded with thorough beatdown of the Flames, winning 42-14.  The Cajuns have been underdogs two time since their season-opening loss to Texas.  In those two games (Appalachian State and Liberty), the Cajuns have outscored their opposition 83-27.  We expect the Cajuns to get some more love in the rankings this week.

Division Clinchers.  UT San Antonio moved to 11-0 and clinched a spot in the CUSA Championship with a dramatic 34-31 win over UAB.  Northern Illinois clinched the MAC West with a hard fought 33-27 win over Buffalo.  Appalachian State started slow but scored 42 unanswered points to dominate Troy 45-7 and clinch another Sunbelt East title. 

Losers:

Utah State.  The Aggies needed a win against Wyoming to continue to control their own destiny in the Mountain Division of the MWC.  The Cowboys dominated both sides of the ball and beat the Aggies 44-17 to throw the Mountain Division into a three-way tie heading into the last week of the season. 

New Mexico State, Connecticut, Massachusetts.   All three fell to 1-10 with losses this week.  They have rarely been competitive this season, with opponents outscoring them 41-17 on average.  UConn closes with Houston and seems destined to finish 1-11.  In the only bright spot in an otherwise dismal year, New Mexico State and UMass meet in last week, giving one team the prospects of a 2-10 finish. 

G5 Gurus Top 20 following Week 11.

The G5 Guru Top 20 saw no changes in the top 7. Fresno State and Coastal Carolina move up a spot each with SMU’s loss.  Army jumps two spots to claim #10. 

SMU leads off the second ten, followed by Boise State and Air Force.  Northern Illinois jumps 3 spots to #14, Utah State slides back to #15, and Western Kentucky jumps 3 to #16.  UCF jumps 3 to #17, followed by Nevada and Liberty. East Carolina slides past UAB for the #20 spot.

TeamConfRecord
CincinnatiAAC13-1
LouisianaSBC13-1
HoustonAAC12-2
Utah StateMWC11-3
San Diego StateMWC12-2
Brigham YoungInd10-3
Fresno StateMWC10-3
Texas San AntonioCUSA12-2
Air ForceMWC10-3
Coastal CarolinaSBC11-2
ArmyInd9-4
Appalachian StateSBC10-4
Western KentuckyCUSA9-4
UCFAAC9-4
Alabama BirminghamCUSA9-4
Central MichiganCUSA9-4
Northern IllinoisMAC9-5
LibertyInd8-4
Western MichiganMAC8-4
SMUAAC8-4

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