How the final weekend’s impacting the College Football Playoff rankings so far
The committee’s final top 25 comes out Sunday afternoon, but let’s keep track as we go of which teams are helping and hurting their cases. We’ll update this after each round of games goes final.
The main thing for Oregon: it took care of business, and it’s in. Now to spend Saturday scouting semifinal opposition.
The biggest question for the Pac-12 champs is now whether they hop potential SEC champion Bama for No. 1, especially after the Ducks destroyed a top-10 team and avenged their only loss with authority. But they’re hosting a semifinal at the Rose Bowl regardless. If the season ended right now, the Ducks would get No. 3 TCU in Pasadena, but there’s a whole Saturday still to go. Other potential opponents include Baylor, Florida State, and Ohio State, along with any CHAOS TEAMS that might arise due to mayhem elsewhere.
With a high ranking, the Wildcats looked like they’d have a shot to finish in a New Year’s bowl, perhaps the nearby Fiesta. But with this one being such a hideous blowout, you gotta think there’s a chance the Wildcats slip out of the top 11 (with a mid-major taking a spot, that’s the cutoff for power-conference teams this time). Who would take advantage? No. 12 Ole Miss already seemed likely to sneak upward due to Saturday losses. Could somebody like No. 9 Kansas State hang around, if it loses close to No. 6 Baylor, perhaps?
I think the committee goes gentle on the South Division champs for losing in their 13th game, but that’s a total guess.
Current New Year’s Six projection
|Rose||No. 1 Oregon||No. 4 TCU||1/1/2015||Pasadena, CA|
|Sugar||No. 2 Alabama||No. 3 Florida State||1/1/2015||New Orleans, LA|
|Cotton||Baylor||Michigan State||1/1/2015||Arlington, TX||At-large|
|Fiesta||Boise State||Arizona||12/31/2014||Glendale, AZ||At-large|
|Orange||Georgia Tech||Mississippi State||12/31/2014||Miami, FL||ACC 1 vs. Big Ten/Notre Dame/SEC|
|Peach||Ohio State||Ole Miss||12/31/2014||Atlanta, GA||At-large|
MAC champ NIU and American co-champ UCF are now among the teams that could take No. 22 Boise State’s automatic New Year’s Six bowl bid, if the Broncos lose the Mountain West title to 6-6 Fresno State. Remember, that autobid can only go to the top conference champion from among the non-powers, so the entire MWC would be out if Boise loses.
AAC co-champ Memphis (9-3 with two losses to ranked teams) is the other team currently on the list. Sun Belt champ Georgia Southern is ineligible, due to NCAA rules against first-year FBS teams making bowls.
On Saturday, 11-1 Marshall and 8-3 Cincinnati could also join the group.
Here’s Saturday’s schedule of games that will (or could) change things, with conference championship implications in each:
|Noon ET||Louisiana Tech||Marshall||ESPN 2||espn.go.com/watchespn|
|Noon ET||Iowa State||No. 3 TCU||ABC||abc.go.com/watch-live|
|3:30 p.m. ET||Oklahoma State||No. 20 Oklahoma||FS1||foxsports.com/foxsportsgo|
|4 p.m. ET||No. 1 Alabama||No. 16 Missouri||CBS||cbssports.com|
|7:45 p.m. ET||No. 9 Kansas State||No. 6 Baylor||ESPN||espn.go.com/watchespn|
|7:45 p.m. ET||No. 4 Florida State||No. 11 Georgia Tech||ABC||espn.go.com/watchespn|
|8:17 p.m. ET||No. 13 Wisconsin||No. 5 Ohio State||FOX||foxsports.com/foxsportsgo|
|10 p.m. ET||Fresno State||No. 22 Boise State||CBS||cbssports.com|