Originally posted on Crystal Ball Run  |  Last updated 10/19/12
With half of the college football season finished (I’ll try not to cry), it should only get better as we watch for who is going to finish second to Alabama. Naturally, there are some great SEC games on the horizon (not so much for the Big Ten). There are even a couple nice Big East games with Louisville, Rutgers and Cincinnati. But here are the five must-see games for the second half of the season. No. 7 South Carolina at No. 2 Florida (Oct. 20) South Carolina may be reeling a bit from a tough loss at LSU’s Death Valley last week, but the Gamecocks can put that one behind them real quick by getting a win at The Swamp. Not an easy task as Will Muschamp has the Gators playing tough SEC defense and Jeff Driskel is starting to put it together at quarterback. This game has major implications on who wins the SEC East and reaches the conference championship game. Whenever Steve Spurrier returns to Gainesville it’s going to be an interesting weekend. No. 5 Notre Dame at No. 9 Oklahoma (Oct. 27) Who would have predicted Notre Dame would make the must-see list at this point. But Brian Kelly is doing what he said he could accomplish in South Bend, but he’s doing it with one of the nation’s most stifling defenses. Even if you don’t like the Irish you have to be impressed with how this unit plays, especially senior Manti Te’o. The Sooners slipped up at Kansas State, but it seems like Oklahoma is back on track and could still win the Big 12. It’s also nice to see such a huge non-conference game this late in the season. No. 1 Alabama at No. 6 LSU (Nov. 3) This game makes the list almost every year. Alabama and LSU are legitimate contenders every year and 2012 is no different. Last year, LSU snuck into Tuscaloosa and pulled out a close win. Could the Tigers do the same at home? Right now it’s hard to see anyone beating Alabama. Have you seen that defense? Have you seen the depth at running back? I could go on. One thing is clear; this will be the hardest hitting game of 2012 (apologies to Manti Te’o). No. 9 Oklahoma at No. 13 West Virginia (Nov. 17) Oklahoma again? Well, the first trip to Morgantown is a game you shouldn’t miss (and I won’t). Now if WVU loses to Kansas State this week, this game will lose some luster but it won’t damage the atmosphere at Mountaineer Field. There’s also a special opportunity to see two great college quarterbacks in Geno Smith and Landry Jones go at it in primetime. No. 3 Oregon at No. 8 Oregon State (Nov. 24) The Civil War is one of the game’s best rivalries, but the 2012 version may have the biggest stakes. If everything holds true, this game will be for a spot in the Pac-12 championship and maybe even a spot in the BCS Championship. The Beavers probably don’t have the horses to keep up with their rival, but the game is in Corvallis so you have to give them a shot. What a great way to finish out the second half of the season.
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