Eliminator Week 12: Playoff hopes remain for a dozen

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney had better start ordering some pizzas.

Maybe Ohio State coach Urban Meyer can get him a good deal.

With only two weeks left in college football's regular season, we're down to 12 teams for the four spots in the College Football Playoff. With plenty of important games left to play, including the conference championship games, there seem to be seven legitimate contenders for the four spots, unless there's a big upset in the final two weeks.

We saw a few surprising results this past weekend, including UConn's stunning 20-17 victory over previously unbeaten Houston. As a result, the Cougars were one of three teams eliminated from contention by The Eliminator, which is narrowing the 128-team FBS field to the four spots for the playoff. TCU and Wisconsin also were eliminated.

Through 12 weeks, 116 of the 128 teams from FBS have been eliminated from playoff contention.

Here's where FBS stands after Week 12:

Jump to sections: Better luck next season | Previously eliminated | Who's in | Still in contention | On the fence

Better luck next season

Houston Cougars

Trending: DOWN

I imagine it's pretty hard to focus on beating UConn when you're contemplating a $1.65 million raise, turning down job offers from Miami, Missouri and South Carolina and trying to fix Ohio State's broken offense all at once.

TCU Horned Frogs

Trending: EVEN

I'll tell you one thing: The next time my putting, driving and chipping go out simultaneously, I'm calling TCU coach Gary Patterson to fix it. The man has put in yeoman's work piecing together a team the past couple of months.

Wisconsin Badgers

Trending: DOWN

You're lucky it wasn't Ralphie on the other end of those snowballs, Wisconsin fans. He would have bloodied your face like Scut Farkus' in "A Christmas Story."

Previously eliminated

Eliminated in Week 1 (30 teams): Akron Zips, Arkansas State Red Wolves, Army Black Knights, Bowling Green Falcons, Central Michigan Chippewas, Charlotte 49ers (not bowl-eligible), Colorado Buffaloes, Eastern Michigan Eagles, Florida Atlantic Owls, Georgia Southern Eagles, Georgia State Panthers, Idaho Vandals, Kansas Jayhawks, Kent State Golden Flashes, Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns, Louisiana Monroe Warhawks, New Mexico State Aggies, SMU Mustangs, Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles, Texas San Antonio Roadrunners, Texas State Bobcats, Troy Trojans, Tulane Green Wave, UCF Knights, UNLV Rebels, UTEP Miners, Vanderbilt Commodores, Washington State Cougars, Western Michigan Broncos, Wyoming Cowboys

Eliminated in Week 2 (27 teams): Appalachian State Mountaineers, Arkansas Razorbacks, Ball State Cardinals, Buffalo Bulls, Cincinnati Bearcats, Colorado State Rams, East Carolina Pirates, Florida International Golden Panthers, Fresno State Bulldogs, Hawaii Rainbow Warriors, Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, Louisville Cardinals, Marshall Thundering Herd, Maryland Terrapins, Massachusetts Minutemen, Miami (OH) RedHawks, Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders, Nevada Wolf Pack, New Mexico Lobos, North Texas Mean Green, Rice Owls, San Diego State Aztecs, San Jose State Spartans, South Alabama Jaguars, South Florida Bulls, Utah State Aggies, Virginia Cavaliers

Eliminated in Week 3 (14 teams): Air Force Falcons, Auburn Tigers, Boston College Eagles, Connecticut Huskies, Iowa State Cyclones, Nebraska Cornhuskers, Northern Illinois Huskies, Old Dominion Monarchs, Purdue Boilermakers, Rutgers Scarlet Knights, South Carolina Gamecocks, Texas Longhorns, Tulsa Golden Hurricane, Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

Eliminated in Week 4 (9 teams): Arizona State Sun Devils, BYU Cougars, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, Ohio Bobcats, Oregon State Beavers, Tennessee Volunteers, Virginia Tech Hokies, Wake Forest Demon Deacons, Washington Huskies

Eliminated in Week 5 (4 teams): Arizona Wildcats, Minnesota Golden Gophers, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Texas Tech Red Raiders

Eliminated in Week 6 (12 teams): Georgia Bulldogs, Illinois Fighting Illini, Indiana Hoosiers, Kansas State Wildcats, Miami Hurricanes, Missouri Tigers, Navy Midshipmen, NC State Wolfpack, Oregon Ducks, Syracuse Orange, USC Trojans, West Virginia Mountaineers

Eliminated in Week 7 (6 teams): Boise State Broncos, Kentucky Wildcats, Northwestern Wildcats, Ole Miss Rebels, Penn State Nittany Lions, UCLA Bruins

Eliminated in Week 8 (2 teams): California Golden Bears, Texas A&M Aggies

Eliminated in Week 9 (3 teams): Duke Blue Devils, Pittsburgh Panthers, Temple Owls

Eliminated in Week 10 (3 teams):Florida State Seminoles, Memphis Tigers, Toledo Rockets

Eliminated in Week 11 (3 teams): LSU Tigers, Stanford Cardinal, Utah Utes

Who's in

The weekend started with five undefeated FBS teams, but only two were still standing after Ohio State, Oklahoma State and Houston were upset Saturday. With defending national champion Ohio State falling from the unbeaten ranks, No. 1 Clemson and No. 2 Alabama seem to be the clear front-runners for the top two spots in the playoff. Michigan State, which upset the Buckeyes 17-14 at the Horseshoe, might climb into the top four with two impressive victories over top-15 teams (Ohio State and Michigan). Oklahoma might grab the fourth spot, even after nearly blowing a 17-point lead in the fourth quarter of a 30-29 win over TCU. Iowa, Notre Dame, Baylor, Stanford and Ohio State remain in the mix.

Still in contention

Alabama Crimson Tide

Trending: EVEN

Sure, Charleston Southern can laugh about having more rushing yards than LSU's Leonard Fournette had against Alabama. At least the Tigers had four more first downs than the Buccaneers' eight.

Baylor Bears

Trending: UP

How is that Bears coach Art Briles can get three quarterbacks ready to play, but eight SEC teams can't get one ready? Welcome back to the playoff hunt, Baylor.

Clemson Tigers

Trending: EVEN

The Tigers play at rival South Carolina in next week's regular-season finale. The Gamecocks are coming off a 23-22 loss to The Citadel, which plays at Coastal Carolina in the first round of the FCS playoffs. It's a shame the loser doesn't get to play the Gamecocks for third place in the state.

Iowa Hawkeyes

Trending: UP

Unless you live in the Midwest, you might not know that Iowa has "ANF" decals on the back of their helmets. ANF stands for "America Needs Farmers." Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz thinks the CFP selection committee needs more farmers.

Michigan State Spartans

Trending: UP

Spartans coach Mark Dantonio said his team finally got to be the "chaser" in Saturday's 17-14 upset at Ohio State, after being chased by opponents all season. I'd be scared as hell if Dantonio were chasing me.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Trending: DOWN

Luck of the Irish? Not quite. The Fighting Irish lost starting cornerback KeiVarae Russell to a broken leg in Saturday night's' 19-16 win over Boston College at Fenway Park. He's the seventh Notre Dame player lost to a season-ending injury this season. Tailback C.J. Prosise is also doubtful to play in the regular-season finale at Stanford because of a high ankle sprain.

Oklahoma Sooners

Trending: EVEN

Sooners starting quarterback Baker Mayfield is questionable to play in Saturday's Bedlam game at Oklahoma State because of a concussion. If Mayfield can't go, Trevor Knight will start against the Cowboys. A few words of advice: Just pretend it's Alabama's defense, young man.

On the fence

Florida Gators

Trending: DOWN

Gators coach Jim McElwain said his team's offensive line is playing with the same energy as dead fish on ice at a supermarket. If the Gators don't play much better against rival Florida State this week, it's going to be a fish kill in The Swamp.

Michigan Wolverines

Trending: UP

Now Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh is really going to be fired up. Didn't the Buckeyes know that he's the only one who is allowed to mouth off before The Game?

North Carolina Tar Heels

Trending: DOWN

You might have a six-pack, Larry Fedora, but there's only one true "Dab Daddy."

Ohio State Buckeyes

Trending: DOWN

Was it a meat lover's or Italian this time?

Oklahoma State Cowboys

Trending: DOWN

Somebody needs to tell OSU coach Mike Gundy that T. Boone Pickens might fire him if the Cowboys don't beat Oklahoma this week.