Can Ohio State Still Get Into The College Football Playoff?
Really? Is it possible now that a two-loss Buckeye team cam make it into the fun?
Two-Loss Ohio State and the College Football Playoff
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The desperate tweets were flying with screaming too profane to republish. But the feelings of a big portion of the college football nation were clear.
Please, no Ohio State in the College Football Playoff.
Not only did the Buckeyes get smoked by Clemson in a brutally ugly Fiesta Bowl in last year’s CFP, but getting trounced at home by Oklahoma and destroyed by Iowa two weeks ago should’ve ended any and all discussion.
But this team just won’t go away, and now there’s a very, very good chance they’ll have a shot to at least get close.
The Buckeyes have been CFP trailblazers as the first national champ in the new era, and last year being the first team to get in without winning a division or conference title. And now they’re trying to be the first two-loss team to make it into the tournament.
Here’s the problem. When they’re on, this is absolutely one of the four best teams in college football. The 48-3 destruction of Michigan State showed just how good they really are – but there’s still the 55-24 loss at Iowa.
Ripping apart the midsection of the Big Ten schedule with brilliant efficiency was awesome – and they lost to Oklahoma 31-16 at home.
There’s the Penn State win to go along with the Michigan State blowout, and there’s something to be said for hammering Nebraska, Maryland and Rutgers by a combined score of 174 to 28, but …
It’s going to take a lot of work to get behind that CFP velvet rope this year.
The Oklahoma win over TCU hurt. If all things are equal, even if OSU wins the Big Ten title and the Sooners lose the Big 12 Championship, doesn’t 11-2 OU get the call over 11-2 OSU?
Yeah, probably – but 11-2 Big 12 champion Oklahoma State or TCU would likely get in over OSU by beating the Sooners.
And what about the SEC mess? Would a Big Ten title be enough to get OSU in over a two-loss Georgia team that loses the SEC Championship?
If Alabama wins it, yes. If Auburn wins it, problem, because 11-1 Bama might pull a 2016 Ohio State and get in without winning its own division.
However, Notre Dame is out of the way now, and so is the Pac-12. So here’s how this happens.
Assume Oklahoma is in. The Buckeyes lose just about every argument to OU or any Big 12 champ, so let that one go.
The Buckeyes must get the Alabama pom-poms out, because they need to get Auburn out of the way and yes, they get the call as a B1G champ over two-loss Georgia.
It would be nice if South Carolina beat Clemson and/or Miami stumbled over its last two games, but really, all that matters is that there’s one viable ACC option, not two.
11-1 Clemson beating an 11-0 Miami in the ACC championship would be a big, big problem. Miami beating Clemson, though, wouldn’t – the Buckeyes would play the conference championship card.
So for this to work, Oklahoma, Alabama, Miami – done, done and done. However, there’s one other big issue.
On the one hand, it would help the Buckeyes’ stature to be the ones to take down a 12-0 Badger team. Do that in a blowout and it’s all good. However, last year Ohio State went 11-1 and got in over an 11-2 Big Ten champion Penn State – could that possibly come back to bite the Buckeyes?
Does the committee value one-loss teams more than anything a two-loss team can do? After all, Washington didn’t have any sort of a schedule, and it got in with one loss.
If the Badgers rock Michigan and the Wolverines give the Buckeyes a hard time, there might be a debate. But nah …
It’s Ohio State. You can’t kill this program.
So now the message is clear from Urban Meyer to his team – utter annihilation or bust.
Destroy Illinois. Beat Michigan by three touchdowns. Blowout Wisconsin like it did in the 2014 Big Ten Championship. Make the committee have to take you.
And erase any and all proof of that thing that happened in Iowa City.