Monday, 11 December, 2017

Badgers climb into College Football Playoff field

Kirk Herbstreit explains how Alabama can still make the Playoff Clemson No. 1 in College Football Playoff Rankings
Elias Hubbard | 30 November, 2017, 14:01

But with the Tigers No. 1 in the CFP rankings there is at least a chance they could be in the top four even with a loss to the Hurricanes.

Alabama (11-1) fell from No. 1 to fifth after losing to Auburn, and Georgia (11-1) was sixth. That loss dropped the Hurricanes from No. 2 to No. 7, and their only hope at getting back into the top four begins with a win in Saturday's ACC title game against Clemson.

J.T. Barrett has a chance to win another Silver Football, the award given by the Chicago Tribune to the Big Ten's best player.

Alabama vs. Ohio State: Who would deserve fourth playoff spot? The Big 12 championship game could join that group if the selection committee's rankings on Tuesday night elevate TCU into the top 10 as the AP top 25 did this week. Miami slipped after taking its first loss of the season last week from No. 2 to seventh, just ahead of Ohio State at eighth.

Again, there's one team in the top seven that doesn't play: No. 5 Alabama. Ohio State would be coming off four straight wins and a highly-valued conference championship, but one of its two losses was an unexpected beatdown at the hands of a lesser team.

The SEC Championship and the ACC Championship games essentially are play-in games. The Pac-12 is not going to get a team in the playoff, and with the Rose Bowl reserved as a semifinal game, the Pac-12 champ has to go somewhere else; the Fiesta Bowl feels like the best fit to me. Oklahoma plays No. 11 TCU in Arlington, Texas, in the Big 12 title game.

The Playoff was instituted in 2014 and has yet to feature two teams from the same conference in a single Playoff. The Sooners have wins over No. 8 Ohio State, No. 11 TCU and No. 19 Oklahoma State, but the committee has been reluctant to show the Sooners - and their mediocre defense - total respect, clearly preferring Clemson ... and now a two-loss Auburn.

Kelvin Kuo  USA TODAY Sports
Kelvin Kuo USA TODAY Sports

Let's take a look at the top 25.

The weekly hype video produced by the Buckeyes video team never disappoints, but they save their best stuff for the biggest matchups.

Auburn is right behind the Tigers at number two. Washington (10-2) and Stanford (9-3) both jumped the Knights. Auburn advanced to the SEC Championship Game to face Georgia, while Alabama must await its postseason fate.

"They just worry about the next game". Auburn and Oklahoma are the only two teams with two wins over teams which will appear in the top 10 this week.

Clemson would go to New Orleans because, as the No. 1 team, it would get the most favorable geographic position. Maybe Notre Dame could move up and in if some of its previous opponents play well this weekend.

Looks like it, especially if Auburn wins the SEC, but it likely will require a loss by either Wisconsin or Oklahoma.

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