TAMPA, Fla. - Conference championship weekend is upon us. Like a good chocolate porter, it's bittersweet. Bitter because it's the last weekend of college football's regular season. Sweet because it provides us with great match-ups and a ton of intrigue as to which teams will lock up the four spots in the NCAA College Football Playoff.
Okay, to be honest, we already know three of the teams that are getting in: Ohio State, LSU, and Clemson could probably all lose their respective conference title games and still be selected for the playoff (unless one of them gets blown out in embarrassing fashion -- but that's not going to happen).
The drama surrounds that fourth spot. Georgia is slotted there now. Most people who aren't wearing tomato-red and black expect the Dawgs to lose to LSU in the SEC Championship Game. If that happens, it opens the door for Utah, Oklahoma, or Baylor to slide into that 4-hole.
Utah, ranked 5th, faces 13th-ranked Oregon Friday night in the Pac-12 Championship Game.
No.6 Oklahoma takes on No.7 Baylor in the Big 12 Championship Game at noon on Saturday.
No.2 LSU and No.4 Georgia kick-off later that day at 3:30.
Needless to say, the Utes, Sooners, and Bears have to treat their games like play-in games, even though a Georgia upset could spoil their plans. If Georgia loses and Utah wins, it will be up to the Playoff Committee to decide if the Utes or the winner of Oklahoma/Baylor belong in the playoff.
Scott and Chris have different takes (of course they do) on how the race for that final playoff spot is going to shake out. Check out the video for some mind-blowing analysis -- and for the guys' craft beer selections of the week!
Scott stayed local with an interesting twist on a red IPA from Tampa Bay Brewing. Chris ventured out to Oregon, the land of hops and hazelnuts -- and Scott's dad -- for a delicious brown ale by Rogue Brewing. As always, thanks to World of Beer on Avion Park Drive in Tampa for hosting us.
In other major conference championship games on Saturday, top-ranked Ohio State faces No.8 Wisconsin for the Big Ten Championship at 8 p.m. on FOX 13, and No.3 Clemson takes on No.23 Virginia for the ACC title.
And by late Saturday night, the best regular season in sports will be over. So, like a good chocolate porter, drink it in slowly and savor every sip this weekend. You'll miss it when it's gone.