The College Football Playoff picture entering the final weekend was pretty straightforward. Georgia, Michigan, Cincinnati and Oklahoma State were all favored to win their games and would be the four participants in the semifinals.
Those results changed the calculations, but there’s still no mystery about the four teams that will be in the playoff. Michigan and Cincinnati confirmed their spots with wins. Georgia stayed in, despite the loss. Out goes Oklahoma State and in comes Alabama.
The only question is where the quartet will be ranked. Cases can be made for Michigan and Alabama. Yes, the Crimson Tide looked fantastic against Georgia. However, their three previous wins against SEC opponents were by a combined 15 points, including a four-overtime defeat of 6-6 Auburn.
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HIGHS AND LOWS:Winners and losers from Week 14 in college football
Meanwhile, the Wolverines have dominated both Ohio State and Iowa in their final two games after also beating Penn State on the road. Michigan was ranked ahead of Alabama by the committee last week, too.
The other part of the calculation is where to put Georgia. It’s likely the committee will try to avoid a rematch of the SEC title game in the semifinal. If the Bulldogs don’t fall behind Cincinnati, would the Wolverines jump to No. 1?
Given all the considerations, expect Alabama to lead Michigan, Georgia and Cincinnati in that order when the reveal comes Sunday afternoon.
A couple of other pieces of business were resolved this weekend. Utah and Ohio State are set for the Rose Bowl. Baylor and Mississippi will head to the Sugar. Pittsburgh confirmed its place in the New Year’s Six with its ACC title.
Also, there was a bowl added this week to allow the postseason to accommodate the 84 teams that finished with six wins. The date and location are TBA but are shown in the chart.
Reminder: Some conferences may not fulfill their bowl allotment. Asterisks denote a replacement pick. Teams in bold have accepted berths.