What’s it going to take to get to the 2018-2019 College Football Playoff? Here are the five things Ohio State has to do to get into the fun.
Path To The College Football Playoff: Ohio State
What has to happen for Ohio State to get into the College Football Playoff again? Along with the obvious – just win everything, and get in – here are five key steps for the Buckeyes to make it three trips in the first five seasons of the format.
5. Win at TCU … and be impressive about it
For all of the hand-wringing and gnashing of teeth over the ugly loss to Iowa last season, what really did in the Buckeyes was the 31-16 home loss to Oklahoma in early September.
Of course, had they shown up against the Hawkeyes and won, or at least not be so miserable, they would’ve been in the College Football Playoff. But it was that loss Baker Mayfield and OU that screwed things up; there wasn’t a buffer left.
In 2016, Ohio State didn’t even win the East, but it was able to withstand the shocking loss at Penn State to get into the CFP. And why?
1) It was a heartbreaking minor-miracle loss in Happy Valley against a team that ended up winning the Big Ten title, and 2) it whacked around Mr. Mayfield and the eventual Big 12-champion Sooners 45-24 in Norman early on.
There are more than enough landmines to sidestep in Big Ten play. Lose to a nasty TCU team that’s good enough to play for the Big 12 title again, and there’s going to be a big, big problem. Win in a walk, and the tone is set.