Ohio State Football: College Football Playoff, a scenario to consider

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 17: Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes motions to his team against the Oklahoma Sooners at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on September 17, 2016 in Norman, Oklahoma. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 17: Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes motions to his team against the Oklahoma Sooners at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on September 17, 2016 in Norman, Oklahoma. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images) /

Ohio State is ranked No. 6 but at the end of the season  the Buckeyes will be in the final four.

Calm down Buckeye fans and remember back to the first year of the College Football Playoff when Ohio State was 16th in the country the first week of the rankings. Of course all of you know that season ended with a National Championship, proving if teams in front of them stumble anything can happen.

Tuesday night the top 6 teams were as follows: Georgia, Alabama, Notre Dame, Clemson, Oklahoma, Ohio State.

Many of you probably were probably disappointed, angry, or even shocked at Ohio State’s ranking at 6th, and I understand why. However, I think the committee set a precedent with how they are going to evaluate teams going forward, and got the ranking correct.

It is very rare that things play out the way anyone thinks they will, and there is still so much football left, but I think this year more than ever things are going to really shake up. I am going to focus on the top 6 for now and how I think things will play out.

I will share what I think the playoff will be, and guarantee the majority of you will strongly disagree. I think after “championship weekend” is all said and done, the playoff standings will be as follows.

  1. Alabama
  2. Notre Dame
  3. Ohio State
  4. Oklahoma State

Here will be the scenario that will shape the top four.

I’ll begin at the top with the Crimson Tide. I believe Alabama is the best football team in the country no matter where they are in any poll, and that’s just by watching them play. The Tide has looked like the most complete team so far. Nick Saban has repeated over and over he couldn’t care less about the playoff rankings, and that’s just the Alabama way.

The Crimson Tide are the most locked in team in the country and have went out and handled their business with ease every week. The only real threat of a loss in the regular season will be to Auburn, because of the historic rivalry.

Facing Georgia in the championship game (assuming they meet) will be a challenge. While these are two intriguing matchups, the coaching and consistency of coach Saban and his team will allow them to prevail and lock them in at the top spot.

Notre Dame is a team not many people predicted to be in the mix to make the final four at the beginning of the season. But the Irish are on a roll and are my second lock. The Irish have two clear-cut tests left to finish their season.

They have to play on the road at Miami, and again versus Stanford. Since their one point loss to Georgia early in the season, Notre Dame has been locked in and realized they cannot afford any more losses to fulfill the hopes of a national title.

Brian Kelly and his men have possibly the most talented running game in the country with Brandon Wimbush and Josh Adams. I think Adams will be a Heisman finalist, and lead his team to finish off the rest of their season.

As cliché as this may sound, the Ohio State Buckeyes mindset right now needs to be worry about themselves. The ranking at No. 6 may be scary, knowing they don’t completely control their own destiny, but we have seen this scenario before.

Of the top six teams, I expect three to lose at least one game. If the Buckeyes just do their job and win out, that would allow them to grab a playoff spot. I have them solidifying the 3rd spot in the Final 4 after a convincing win in the Big 10 championship against the Badgers from Wisconsin.

The last spot is the one I am most uncertain about, and it is the most heated discussion every year. As of right now, if those 3 teams align one, two, and three that would involve Oklahoma,  Clemson, Miami, and Wisconsin, and Georgia losing at least a game. That would then leave the 4th spot door open to TCU/Oklahoma State, the Pac 12 champion, or Penn State/Georgia.

You could string together a numerous amount of scenarios on who gets the 4th spot, but the scenario I have come up with has the Cowboys grabbing the final spot.

Penn State is one point away from controlling their own destiny all the way to the playoff, but with a loss last weekend in Columbus they need some major help to get in. The Nittany Lions résumé is looking less and less impressive with Michigan and Michigan State both falling apart.

With no key wins to secure left on their schedule, and no chance at a conference championship, I just don’t see a way Penn State can find their way in without some major help.

I believe the Pac 12 has the worst chance of getting a team into the playoff because I think the winner is going to come from the Pac 12 South. I also think the best and definitely hottest team in the conference is two loss Arizona.

Washington has the only legitimate chance of getting the 4th spot out of their conference, with games left against Washington State, Stanford and potentially a conference championship matchup. But I don’t think they have what it takes to win out. Sorry Pac 12 fans, it’s not happening this year.

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Everyone is assuming both Alabama and Georgia are going to win out until the championship game, which is exactly why it won’t happen. Watch out for road matchups against Auburn and Georgia Tech, two teams that would love nothing more than to play spoiler. I think Georgia will lose  a game before the SEC championship and then fall to Alabama when it’s all said in done finishing 11-2.

The Oklahoma Sate Cowboys were in my playoff before the season started and I am still confident they find their way in. With a matchup Saturday against Oklahoma, a win will boost them into the top 10 and allow them to win their way into the first ever Big 12 championship game.

I believe they will take down TCU or even Iowa State convincingly and show they deserve a spot in the playoff at 12-1. The Cowboys offense clearly is able to keep up with anyone in the country and have a defense that is often overlooked.

As far as a semi final matchup against Alabama goes, that could be a scary sight for Oklahoma State, but I like their chances of getting in.

Next: Who has the lead in the Heisman Trophy race?

There is still a lot of football to be played and anything could happen. That’s what makes college football the game we all love so much. The committee has shown us where things stand at the moment, and now there is nothing for fans to do but see how things play out.