Daily Archive: Monday, June 18, 2012

Euro 2012: Previewing Final Games in Group D

Compared to the others, Group D’s advancement scenarios are quite clear heading into the final matchday. If England and France win or draw, they both will advance. Lose, and that’s when things could get complicated. In the second round of games, France and Ukraine were delayed for an hour due to thunderstorms. Once the game resumed, the French cruised to a 2-0 win over the co-host. In the second game, England downed Sweden 3-2 in a wild second half. England led 1-0 at halftime, but Sweden scored two goals in 10 minutes to take the lead. England answered five minutes later and a beautiful heel-kick goal from Danny Welbeck turned out to be the winner. Before we preview the final games, let’s recap what each team needs to advance: England – Advance with win or draw Advance with loss if Sweden beats France and England wins tiebreaker against France (currently trail goal differential by one. Second tiebreaker is goals scored, third is UEFA coefficient, which England wins). France – Advance unless they lose to Sweden by more than one, Ukraine wins and England finishes ahead on tiebreaker. Sweden – Eliminated Ukraine – Advance with win, otherwise eliminated Tuesday’s games: England vs. Ukraine – 2:45 p.m. ET England

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Conference Championship Odds: Big XII

Last year was the first time since its 1996 inception that the Big 12 conference didn’t play a conference championship game. It was also first time since 2003 that a team not named Oklahoma or Texas wore the conference’s championship crown. Mike “I’m a Man, I’m 40” Gundy’s Oklahoma State Cowboys sprinted to the title in 2011. The Red River Rivalry is slated to determine the conference’s BCS bid in 2012, but don’t tell that to a pair of newcomers that could very well represent the Big 12 at the Fiesta Bowl. West Virginia enters the league after a roller-coaster ride in the Big East while TCU slides in after it became tired of dominating the Mountain West Conference. Both teams are good enough to win the conference every year, making the league’s Top 5 as strong as any other league’s Top 5. In the 15-year Big 12 Championship Game era, either the Sooners or Longhorns played in 13 of the 15 title bouts, winning 10 (7 for Oklahoma, 3 for Texas). That’s why before looking at sleepers and major long shots, the smartest play is to always scan the Oklahoma and Texas rosters and schedules; one of those teams is the most likely to

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