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Winners and losers from Week 15 college football games

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Associated Press
Marcus Mariota might have locked up the Heisman this week; Bob Stoops' Sooners lost in stunning fashion to rival OSU.

Week 15 of the college football season brought us highlights galore and a number of surprises nobody could have predicted earlier this year. While we know who won and who lost the games from the box scores, who really came out of Saturday able to hold their heads high?


» Things you need to know from Week 15's college football games


Winners

Marcus Mariota: Thanks to his performance in the Pac-12 Championship Game against Arizona on Friday, the Oregon quarterback basically locked up the Heisman Trophy this season.

College football: Week 15

Northern Illinois: Yet another MAC title is headed to DeKalb after a beatdown of Bowling Green on Friday. With a win over Northwestern, and with Illinois looking like it might not get a bowl game, the Huskies are really the state of Illinois' flagship program.

Marshall: There was no perfect season for the Thundering Herd, but capturing the first Conference USA title in program history following Saturday's dramatic fourth-quarter comeback against Louisiana Tech still makes for a good season.

SMU: The Mustangs made one of the splashiest coaching hires of the offseason in luring Clemson coordinator Chad Morris to Dallas and followed with their first win of the year Saturday -- a 27-20 road victory over Connecticut.

Blake Sims: Few thought he would even play this season for Alabama, but here he is, standing tall as the Crimson Tide's starting quarterback and SEC Championship Game MVP.

Florida State: It hasn't been pretty, but the Seminoles have made it into the playoff undefeated. As Al Davis liked to say, "Just win, baby."

Cardale Jones: Ohio State's third-string quarterback was named Big Ten Championship Game MVP and helped make an impressive statement for the Buckeyes' playoff hopes with a rout of Wisconsin.

Losers

East Carolina: The Pirates nearly locked up a share of the AAC title after a big second-half comeback against UCF on Thursday night, but those hopes were dashed when the Knights completed a miraculous Hail Mary.

Bob Diaco: This was not the first season the UConn coach was expecting, going 2-10 and losing to previously winless SMU to end the year. Ouch.

Bob Stoops: Remember when the Oklahoma coach was riding high and talking a big game? Neither can we after the Sooners blew a big fourth-quarter lead to rival Oklahoma State in the Bedlam game to suffer their third home loss of the season.

The Big 12: The conference has rightfully been raked over the coals for its "One True Champion" slogan and declaring co-champions on Saturday. Not settling the TCU/Baylor debate only made the league office look worse.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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