12 games that will determine the 2021 College Football Playoff

D.J. Uiagalelei, Clemson Tigers. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
D.J. Uiagalelei, Clemson Tigers. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) /
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Spencer Rattler, Oklahoma Sooners
Texas Longhorns, Oklahoma Sooners. (Mandatory Credit: Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports) /

10. Oklahoma vs. Texas (in Dallas, TX), Oct. 9

Hey, look everyone; it’s the future storied SEC matchup known as the Red River Rivalry. Of course, Texas and Oklahoma are still in the Big 12 for the 2021 season and at least the next couple of seasons before they will make their eventual change in conference affiliation. And as that’s the case, the Red River Showdown offers fans one of the most exciting games of the year.

That’s par for the course with the Longhorns and Sooners as, even if there is a discrepancy in quality between the two teams in a given year, they always seem to play one another close. And that will certainly be the case this year as Texas transitions to a new quarterback under a new head coach in Steve Sarkisian while Oklahoma is ranked No. 2 in the preseason AP Top 25.

For all that Lincoln Riley has already accomplished in Norman, this is his best team yet. From Spencer Rattler and a loaded cast of offensive weapons to Nik Bonitto and the most talented, best-coached defense he’s had at his disposal, the Sooners are legit. But Texas is going to be hungry to prove themselves under Sark and, though it’ll be a slight transition, they do have enough talent in guys like Bijan Robinson to push Oklahoma in this game.

On paper and based on what we’ve seen from the squads that the two rivals will run onto the field, Oklahoma should be favored relatively heavily. Yet you still can’t rule the Longhorns out in this matchup, which makes it a make-or-break game for the Sooners as they eye a spot in the College Football Playoff.