The winner of this Thursday’s head-to-head matchup between Grambling and Texas Southern will take control of the berth from the West, but only Grambling can clinch with a win.
If Texas Southern wins vs. Grambling, it would still need one more win in its remaining game vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff, or a Grambling loss to Southern in the Bayou Classic.
Only Alcorn State currently controls its own fate to get to the championship game. The Braves can defeat Prairie View and Jackson State in their final two games and make it to the title game.
If Alabama State defeats Southern in the Hornets’ final SWAC game of the year, then Jackson State is eliminated as Alabama State would own the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Tigers. Ironically, if Alcorn defeats PV and Alabama State defeats Southern, the Hornets would need Jackson State to defeat Alcorn State to qualify.
The best way Jackson State can make the championship game is to have Southern defeat Alabama State, and then JSU defeat UAPB and Alcorn State head-to-head.
There can still be a three-way tie if Alabama State loses to Southern, and then either JSU or Alcorn loses to UAPB or PVAM. The one that lost the previous week would then have to win the Capital City Classic (JSU vs. Alcorn), and then there would be a three-way tie for first at 5-4. However, if that happend AND Alcorn defeated JSU, Alcorn would qualify with head-to-head wins over both Alabama State and Jackson State. If that happend AND Jackson defeated Alcorn, then we have to wait and determine the final WEST division standings (and its gets complicated).
A couple quick updates to the scenarios on the Eastern side.
Alabama State would clinch this weekend if the Hornets defeat Southern AND Alcorn State loses to Prairie View A&M.
Alabama State would also, by virtue of its win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff (JSU and Alcorn both lost to UAPB), win the complicated three-way tie described in the original email (listed below).