Are there any C-USA title game ties left to break?

November 26, 2014 by Derek Redd

It remains a mystery as to where the Conference USA football championship game will take place, insomuch as the conference has yet to announce the game site. The participants are down to three. Marshall, the East Division champ, is a lock. The West Division comes down to Saturday’s game between Rice and Louisiana Tech, the winner taking the West.

But is the game site really a mystery? Let’s look at the conference’s tiebreaker scenarios and where the Herd fits into them:

1. Highest regular-season winning percentage based on overall C-USA play. — If Marshall wins Friday over Western Kentucky, it’ll finish the conference slate at 8-0. Both Rice and Louisiana Tech have a conference loss, so Marshall would host in that scenario.

2. If tied, head-to-head between tied teams. — If Marshall does happen to lose Friday, the Herd already owns the head-to-head edge over Rice through its 41-14 win over the Owls on Nov. 15. Marshall has not yet played Louisiana Tech, so if both are 7-1 in conference, we head to the next tiebreaker.

3. If still tied, the most recent College Football Playoff Selection Committee poll will be used if one team or both teams are ranked. — That most recent ranking would be the one that was released Tuesday, which had Marshall at No. 24 and neither Rice nor Louisiana Tech anywhere on the list. They’re not going to wait until next Tuesday’s poll, because the conference isn’t crazy enough to wait until Tuesday night to announce the site for a noon Saturday game. At least it shouldn’t be. So this tiebreaker falls in the Herd’s favor, too.

4. If still tied, highest average computer ranking (computed after eliminating the highest and lowest rankings; then averaging the four remaining rankings). — Based on the wording of the third tiebreaker, it shouldn’t even get to the fourth tiebreaker. But, for the sake of argument, let’s ask this question: How would an 11-1 Marshall fall below an 8-4 Louisiana Tech in the computer rankings?

I’m almost certain you won’t hear anything from the conference office about a game site until the weekend. But if you’re a Marshall fan, I think you can comfortably book a hotel room in Huntington for next Saturday.

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