NCAA

GW gave their best shot, but No. 6 Miami remains undefeated

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USA TODAY Sports

GW gave their best shot, but No. 6 Miami remains undefeated

WASHINGTON -- Dewan Huell scored 15 points, Lonnie Walker IV had 13 and No. 6 Miami used a fast start to beat George Washington 59-50 on Saturday.

One of six remaining unbeaten teams in Division 1 entering the weekend, the Hurricanes (9-0) ripped off 13 of the game's first 15 points on their way to a 21-point lead. The scrappy Colonials pulled within seven with 13:53 remaining, but the rally fizzled down the stretch.

Playing its first game since Dec. 5, Miami shot 41 percent from the field, including a 5-for-21 day from beyond the arc. The Hurricanes made at least half of their field-goal attempts in seven of their first eight games.

Jair Bolden had 13 points and Terry Nolan Jr. scored 10 for the Colonials (5-6), who used a 17-3 run overlapping halftime to cut Miami's lead to 35-28.

George Washington shot 18.5 percent (5 for 27) from the field in the first half and finished at 30.2 percent overall. Miami ranks second nationally in scoring defense and field goal defense.

DJ Vasiljevic scored 10 points for Miami, which is 9-0 for the first time since the 2007-08 team opened the season with 12 consecutive wins.

The matchup wrapped up a home-and-home series. Miami won 72-64 last season.

Why you need to watch every bowl game; a guide from the weird and wacky to the College Football Playoff

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USA TODAY Sports

Why you need to watch every bowl game; a guide from the weird and wacky to the College Football Playoff

Bowl season is upon us and while you think there may be too many or matchups you don't like, I'm here to give you a reason to watch every single game. Plus a pick if, you know, you're "tangentially interested." Let's get weird. 

Saturday, December 16th

R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, 1 p.m. ET on ESPN 

Who: North Texas (+6.5) vs. Troy 

Why: It has been a week since Army-Navy and you need your scratch that college football itch. I get it, man. You don't have to explain yourself to me.

AutoNation Cure Bowl, 2:30 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network

Who: Western Kentucky (-6.5) vs. Georgia State

Why: You want to justify paying for CBS Sports Network.

Las Vegas Bowl, 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Who: No. 25 Boise State vs. Oregon (-7)

Why: Neither of these teams like each other. Remember that LeGarrette Blount punch? So does Boise State.

GILDAN New Mexico Bowl, 4:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Marshall vs. Colorado State (-5.5)

Why: It can't be worse than watching the Chicago Bears set football back 50 years in the same time slot.

Raycom Media Camellia Bowl, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Arkansas State (-4) vs. Middle Tennesse State

Why: Last chance to watch a bowl game for a few days and these two should put on a pretty fun offensive show for you thanks to ASU QB Justice Hansen and MTSU QB Brent Stockstill.

Tuesday, December 19th

Cheribundi Tart Cherry Boca Raton Bowl, 7 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Florida Atlantic (-22.5) vs. Akron

Why: Lane freakin' Kiffin. You know he's going to be celebrating early on the sideline as FAU runs up the score.

Wednesday, December 20th

DXL Frisco Bowl, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: SMU (-5) vs. Louisiana Tech

Why: SMU WR Courtland Sutton will likely have a big day. Also, the endless opportunities to see DJ Khaled "DXL" commercials. 

Thursday, December 21st

Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Temple (-7) vs. Florida International

Why: I'm sorry, did you miss the title sponsor? Bad. Boy. Mowers. Gasparilla. Bowl. Think of the disdain the announcers are going to have by halftime for repeating that over and over. 

Friday, December 22nd

Bahamas Bowl, 12:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: UAB (+7.5) vs. Ohio 

Why: UAB wasn't a program last year. They went 8-4 in their first season back after a two-year hiatus. That's awesome.

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, 4 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Wyoming (PK) vs. Central Michigan

Why: You get a chance to see Blake Bortles Josh Allen before your favorite team overdrafts him in April! 

Saturday, December 23rd

Birmingham Bowl, 12:00 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: South Florida (-2.5) vs. Texas Tech

Why: Defense will be set to "Optional" for what could be the most entertaining offensive game of the bowl season.

Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl, 3:30 p.m ET on ESPN

Who: San Diego State vs. Army (+7)

Why: If you like to be efficient with your time, this game should be over in under three hours. Army may not attempt a pass. 

Dollar General Bowl, 7 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Toledo (-7.5) vs. Appalachian State

Why: I have a tough time finding a reason to steer you away from Aaron Rodgers against the Vikings, but maybe you went to Toledo or Appalachian State. Or, maybe you are an Ohio State fan still gleeful about the Mountaineers win over Michigan. To each their own.

Sunday, December 24th

Hawai'i Bowl, 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Fresno State (+2.5) vs. Houston

Why: There is no Sunday Night Football and you've already seen Home Alone a dozen times by now. 

Tuesday, December 26th

Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl, 1:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Utah (-6.5) vs. West Virginia

Why: You can't be guilted to wear that awful sweater your Aunt Mildred got you in public if you don't leave the couch.

Quick Lane Bowl, 5:15 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Duke vs. Northern Illinois (+5.5)

Why: Duke's David Cutcliffe didn't leave for Tennessee and it is never a bad time to poke fun at Tennessee for that coaching search.

Cactus Bowl, 9 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Kansas State (-2.5) vs. UCLA

Why: Chip Kelly is back at the college ranks; plus, a look at future top-10 pick QB Josh Rosen.

Wednesday, December 27th

Walk-On's Independence Bowl, 1:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Southern Miss (+15.5) vs. Florida State

Why: To see the team Alabama fans spent hours arguing was the key to propping up Alabama's strength of Schedule and why the Crimson Tide made the playoff. A 6-6 Florida State team!

New Era Pinstripe Bowl, 5:15 p.m. ET on ESPN 

Who: Iowa (-3) vs. Boston College

Why: To see the other reason Alabama fans spent days arguing they deserved to be in the playoff -- Iowa! 

Foster Farms Bowl, 8:30 p.m. ET on FOX

Who: Purdue (+3.5) vs. Arizona

Why: Arizona QB Khalil Tate is a cheat code. He didn't start the first four games, but finished with almost 1,300 passing yards and 1,400 rushing yards. He is a human highlight reel. 

Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl, 9 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Missouri (-3) vs. Texas

Why: Because Texas might be ... BACK! (Probably Not)

Thursday, December 28th

Military Bowl presented by Northrup Grumman, 1:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Navy (+1) vs. Virginia

Why: You love America, that's why.

Camping World Bowl, 5:15 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 19 Oklahoma State (-4.5) vs. No. 22 Virginia Tech

Why: We have our first matchup between ranked teams and it should be a fun contrast of styles.

Valero Alamo Bowl, 9 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 13 Stanford vs. No. 15 TCU (-2.5)

Why: Bryce Love was a Heisman finalist and you probably haven't watched him yet because you live on the East Coast and the Pac-12 Network does not exist here.

San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl, 9 p.m. ET on FS1

Who: No. 18 Washington State (-2.5) vs. No. 16 Michigan State

Why: Hopefully you have multiple TV's so you can watch both of these games. Also, Mike Leach is a pirate and conspiracy theorist. 

Friday, December 29th

Belk Bowl, 1 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Wake Forest (-3) vs. Texas A&M

Why: The Belk Bowl has the best twitter account and you should reward good tweets.

Hyundai Sun Bowl, 3 p.m. ET on CBS

Who: No. 24 NC State (-6) vs. Arizona State

Why: Maybe a chance to find out if Herm Edwards really knew the mascot for Arizona State was the Sun Devils before he accepted the job.

Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl, 4:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: Kentucky vs. No. 21 Northwestern (-7)

Why: Northwestern RB Justin Jackson will keep your interest if nothing else.

NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl, 5:30 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network

Who: New Mexico State (+4) vs. Utah State

Why: New Mexico State hasn't been in a bowl game since 1960, which oddly enough was against Utah State. Revenge game for Utah State?

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 8 USC vs. No. 5 Ohio State (-7.5)

Why: A top-10 matchup of two teams that had legitimate shots at the playoff and both probably had better profiles than Alabama. Plus, future No. 1 pick Sam Darnold!

Saturday, December 30th

TaxSlayer Bowl, Noon ET on ESPN

Who: Louisville vs. No. 23 Mississippi State (+6.5)

Why: Lamar Jackson. You know he is going to do something insane one more time in college football and it is your last chance to see him. 

AutoZone Liberty Bowl, 12:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Who: Iowa State vs. No. 20 Memphis (-3.5)

Why: Iowa State's Matt Campbell and Memphis' Mike Norvell aren't going to be at these schools long before they go up to bigger programs.

PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, 4 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 11 Washington vs. No. 9 Penn State (-2)

Why: A few of my bosses are Penn State fans and I like seeing them upset when they lose. 

Capital One Orange Bowl, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 6 Wisconsin vs. No. 10 Miami (+6.5)

Why: Two words -- Turnover Chain.

Monday, January 1st

Outback Bowl, Noon ET on ESPN2

Who: Michigan vs. South Carolina (+7.5)

Why: You're probably still going to be hungover and on the couch and don't want to move. Oh, and BLOOMIN' ONION MAN!

Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl, 12:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 12 UCF (+9.5) vs. No. 7 Auburn

Why: UCF has a chance to go for an undefeated season and send Scott Frost out to the cornfields of Nebraska in style.

Citrus Bowl presented by Overton's, 1 p.m. ET on ABC

Who: No. 14 Notre Dame vs. No. 17 LSU

Why: Can you imagine how angry Brian Kelly will be if Notre Dame loses?

College Football Playoff at the Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual, 5 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 3 Georgia vs. No. 2 Oklahoma (+2)

Why: The Granddaddy of Them All is way less of a mouthful than the official title and way more fun to say in Keith Jackson's voice. Also, and this is probably more important, it is the first playoff game and Baker Mayfield is facing an SEC defense.

College Football Playoff at the Allstate Sugar Bowl, 8:45 p.m. ET on ESPN

Who: No. 4 Alabama vs. No. 1 Clemson (+2.5)

Why: You know why.

MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: BOWL GUIDE ON TV

Villanova takes top spot in new AP Poll, but West Virginia is climbing

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Villanova takes top spot in new AP Poll, but West Virginia is climbing

Villanova's unbeaten start now includes a No. 1 ranking in the AP Top 25 , while Arizona State is making a rapid rise into the top 10 under third-year coach Bobby Hurley.

After a tumultuous week in which unanimous No. 1 Duke and No. 2 Kansas lost, the Wildcats (10-0) earned 41 of 65 first-place votes to hop over Michigan State and reach the top for the third straight season.

Villanova and Michigan State were the favorites to take over at the top after the Blue Devils' weekend loss at Boston College, though there was far less certainty for voters about who was now the nation's top team. The Spartans (9-1) earned 19 first-place votes to climb from third to second, while the other five first-place votes went to the Sun Devils -- who leapt 11 spots to No. 5 after Sunday's win at Kansas.

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Arizona State (9-0) is off to its best start since the 1974-75 season. Now the Sun Devils — who also have a win against Xavier this season — have their highest ranking since reaching third during the 1980-81 season.

Wichita State climbed three spots to No. 3, followed by Duke and Arizona State. Unbeaten Miami climbed four spots to No. 6, followed by North Carolina, Kentucky, Texas A&M and Xavier to round out the top 10.

Villanova helped itself with an impressive win against No. 12 Gonzaga last week in New York, though the Wildcats had to fight to the final minute Sunday to close out a La Salle team that entered at 5-5.

"It's always an honor to be ranked No. 1," Villanova coach Jay Wright said in a statement. "It's great for the Nova Nation and we appreciate the respect of the writers. We know it's early, though, and we need to get a lot better."

West Virginia made one of the biggest jumps this week in the poll, climbing seven spots to No. 11 from No. 18 last week. Virginia — following its 68-61 loss to West Virginia — dropped one spot to No. 16. 

Although it's not quite in the mix yet, Virginia Tech received 15 votes this week, and Georgetown — which grabbed a few votes last week — is no longer in the mix, despite remaining undefeated with the best record in the Big East.

KANSAS' FALL

The Jayhawks (7-2) slid 11 spots to No. 13 after two losses last week, the first coming against Washington in Kansas City, Missouri, before losing to the Sun Devils in Allen Fieldhouse.

SHUFFLE UP

Only two teams — No. 8 Kentucky and No. 12 Gonzaga — stayed in the same spot. Thirteen teams rose in the poll, while four of the seven teams that fell slid at least eight spots.

TOP RISERS

Arizona State's leap was the biggest, though No. 11 West Virginia (9-1) moved up seven spots after beating then-No. 15 Virginia. No. 14 TCU (10-0) climbed six spots after a win against a then-ranked Nevada team.

Miami, UNC, No. 15 Seton Hall, No. 17 Purdue and No. 20 Tennessee all climbed four spots.

LONGEST SLIDES

While Kansas' losses stood out, No. 22 Florida had the biggest fall of the week.

The Gators (6-3) slid 17 spots after home losses to Florida State and to Loyola Chicago — a game in which they led for all of 93 seconds. Florida salvaged a win against Cincinnati in the Never Forget Tribute Classic in Newark, New Jersey, to avoid a four-game skid.

No. 18 Notre Dame (8-2) fell nine spots after an upset loss to Ball State, while the No. 25 Bearcats (7-2) slid eight spots.

NEWCOMERS

There were three newcomers to this week's poll, though one is more of a welcome back.

The list included No. 19 Florida State (9-0) and No. 24 Texas Tech (7-1), while Arizona returned to the rankings at No. 23.

Arizona's 0-3 showing at the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas made the Wildcats the first team in three decades to go from No. 2 in the AP Top 25 to unranked in a week. But four straight wins have the preseason Final Four favorite back in the poll.

SLIDING OUT

Minnesota (No. 14 last week), Nevada (No. 22) and Southern California (No. 25) all fell out of the poll.

NBC Sports Washington contributed to this report.

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